• Published 15th Dec 2013
  • 1,199 Views, 47 Comments

Prompt-A-Day Collection - Admiral Biscuit

A collection of random stories from the Prompt-A-Day group's challenges

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4: "You're Something Different"

Have you ever woken up in a strange place with no idea how you got there? It’s a pretty unpleasant feeling, let me tell you. It’s hard not to panic.

Now, imagine that you’re not only in a strange place, but you’re in a strange body. I did what anyone would do. I ran around screaming for a good long while, before collapsing, curling into a fetal position, and crying my eyes out.

I’m not sure it helped my situation, but at least it didn’t attract any unwanted attention.

I finally stood back up and decided to do the mature thing, and re-assess my position. To do that, I’d first have to see what changes had been wrought. I still had four legs, and I could feel my ears and tail responding, so whatever had changed me hadn’t been too cruel.

Everything seemed . . . bigger, though. From a distance, the forest looked the same as it always had but . . . oh horseapples, the forest! I’m in the Everfree forest!

I had to get out, before something worse happened. My granny had told me—in no uncertain terms—that anypony who goes into the Everfree never comes back out! I hoped she was wrong . . . but some strange transformation magic had already corrupted my body. It might already be too late.

I galloped in what I hoped was the right direction, my stupid new legs covering only a fraction of the ground I should have been able to cover. Still, it wasn’t a total loss; I was able to race under fallen trees that I would have had to jump over in my former body.

The howling of a distant predator froze me for an instant, before I leapt at a tree and scrabbled my way up to safety. I couldn’t climb trees before, I thought. That was small consolation. Once I reached a safe crutch in the tree, I noticed that my formerly beautiful tail had been replaced with a length of fluffy rope. Batting a hoof in the direction of my mane, I was distressed to discover that it had vanished entirely; even worse, a glimpse at my hip revealed no cutie mark. I had totally lost my identity.

A closer howl reminded me that I might lose more than that. I clutched the branch tightly and tried to blend in.

I spent the rest of the night in that stupid tree. It was cold and uncomfortable. A pony—even a former pony—should not sleep in a tree. But the new dawn gave me some small hope: I was still alive, and seeing the sunrise oriented me. I knew which way Ponyville was, so at least I could go back home. It would be safe there, and the librarian—Twilight Sparkle—would know what had happened to me, and could change me back.

The first part of the morning—rather longer than I’d like to admit—was spent descending the tree. Getting up it had been easy; getting back down turned out to be an entirely different affair. I almost fell several times before figuring out I had to descend rump-first in a kind of controlled fall. That’s not fair; squirrels can see where they go when they descend trees, I thought. But I finally got all four paws on the ground, and trotted off towards the east. Towards Ponyville.

When I reached the road, I breathed a sigh of relief. That lasted all of one second. My feet slipped out from under me and I began sliding uncontrollably down the road—which was now made of soap. I crashed in a heap at the bottom of the hill, dodged a group of stampeding bunnies on stilts, and fell into a puddle of chocolate milk.

Shaking off my coat as best I could, I looked wide-eyed into what my home had become. Houses floated upside-down in the sky and ponies ran around in a panic. It was worse than the parasprites. What happened?

I wove my way through the now-unfamiliar streets, hoping to find an answer at the library. Something had happened there, too: there was a gigantic hole in the wall. Through it, I heard Twilight ordering Spike. “Pack our bags. We’re leaving.”

My ears flattened. If Twilight was leaving, there was no hope. I was stuck like this forever. I would spend the rest of my days as . . . a cat.

Author's Note:

You're something different, you don't know how, nor why.