• Published 9th Jan 2015
  • 640 Views, 64 Comments

Spark Notes - Sharp Spark

A collection of shorts, digressions, and abandoned works.

  • ...

Cymothoa Exigua

Blinky always wanted wings. Life was hard for an earth pony colt in Cloudsdale. His parents loved him, but Dad's job at the weather factory didn't pay well enough for a fancy cloud house with cloudstone floors. Instead, they lived in one of the shabby houses in the shadow of the city.

It was all Blinky's fault, really. His sister Winky told him that once, when he had made her really angry. And even though she apologized afterwards and looked really sad, he knew it to be true.

So that's why every night before bed, Blinky would stare out at the bottom of Cloudsdale, and imagine the stars shining on the other side of the clouds. He'd always make a special wish that one day he would get his wings. He dreamed about it constantly. When he had his wings, he'd be able to fly around wherever he wanted, and wouldn't need special help to get to school, and his family could move on up to a deluxe apartment in the sky.

One morning, Blinky woke up feeling different.

He felt all sweaty, but shivery at the same time too. His tongue tasted like spoiled milk and he itched all over, especially on his sides. Mom made him stay home from school that day, and told him not to scratch himself. But she had to go to the Diner for work, so he had to stay home alone. And even though he tried, he couldn't stand the itchiness.

He had to crane his head around in a weird way that hurt his neck to gnaw at the fur on his side. But that helped a little. He chewed and chewed, and it felt really good, up until he bit a little too hard and tasted something gross and metally. He dragged himself out of bed to find a band-aid and hoped Mom wouldn't be too upset.

But by the time she got home, he was feeling so woozy that he hardly even understood what she was saying. Instead he slept.

For three whole days, it turned out. And when Blinky woke up, he had wings!

Kind of.

Well, there were hard bumps on his side that hid under his fur and moved kinda weirdly when he poked with a hoof. Mom said they were getting him a doctor, but since without many bits they were on a waiting list and it'd be a while. She also said that she wasn't working at the Diner anymore, so now she could stay home with him.

Blinky wasn't scared though, even though Mom and Dad whispered to each other when they thought he wasn't listening. He knew the truth: he was getting his wings! Just like he had always wanted.

He waited until Mom fell asleep in the chair next to his bed to start biting at his sides again. It felt even better this time, and the metally stuff didn't taste so gross. He could feel his wings trying to flap. He just had to get them out from under his sides, first.

It only got weird when he got all the way down and felt his teeth click right up against something hard. At first it felt super satisfying. And then it hurt really really bad and he started crying and Mom woke up and screamed.

Two weeks later, his sides had mostly healed, and his wings were much larger. Blinky was excited, because they were almost big enough to fly.

They weren't like Mom's or Dad's though. Or even his sister's wings, which were smaller and didn't have all the primary feathers.

Blinky's wings didn't have feathers at all. They had a hard covering that protected a thin flappy bit. They were brownish-blackish-clearish-green, not light blue like his coat. And they usually stayed closed. He couldn't really control them very well at all. But he knew he'd figure it out in time. Sometimes they flicked and buzzed and felt funny, and also pushed a lot of air around!

Blinky had lost a lot of weight, but that was just his body adapting to the wings. He'd need to be lighter, then he'd be the best flyer in his class.

He tried to tell Mom that, but she just went really quiet. And Dad's work must have been busy, because Blinky hadn't seen him in at least a week. The doctor was supposed to come soon, though.

Blinky couldn't wait to show off his wings.

Author's Note:

From the Writeoff, October 2017, "Cold Comfort."

There's more discussion of this story on that site that explains the intent a little more. But I'll leave it ambiguous here. Happy Halloween!

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