• Published 10th May 2016
  • 1,879 Views, 414 Comments

The Titan's Orb: Rising Storm - Old Man Dusters



While Callum and the Mane Six continue their quest to find the shards of the Titan's Orb, their path ahead grows only more deadly as they are now stalked by a relentless shadow that will stop at nothing until they are vanquished...

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Chapter Three - Walking on the Lonely Road

I woke a ditch, and my head was thumping like a bass drum; I still wasn’t used to the technique for a smooth teleportation, along with my mind not being focused due to Twilight’s last words.
I grumbled as I assumed what she had done, I took out my phone and looked at my Maps app to confirm my thoughts.

“God, fucking, dammit…” I muttered as I kicked the ground in frustration.

As I thought about it, it made a lot more sense that Twilight would have used this teleportation as an advantage to get rid of me. After all this time I still couldn’t figure out why she hated my guts; I didn’t really give two shits after all we’ve been through now, it’s just something I learned to live with, until now.
This really crossed a line, and I promised myself that when I eventually find the group again, I would be having some serious fucking words with her, I was going to get to the bottom of this once and for all.
Until then, there was only one thing I could do.
And so I began to walk.

And walk.

And walk.

And walk.

Days and nights passed and I just kept walking, and as the days went by I grew thinner and thinner as hunger slowly sapped away at me.
I’d been walking for almost two weeks when my legs finally gave out; I fell to my knees before rolling over onto my side and hitting the dirt with a thump. My vision was blurry and I couldn’t think straight, my thoughts were just a jumbled mix of “food, mission, water, orb, sleep, Twilight”…

I shook my head and waited for the dizziness to fade, and I was able to clear my head slightly. I wasn’t a fool, I knew full-well I’d never get to the orb shard like this, I needed to keep myself fit and healthy, even if it meant delaying my journey; I needed to survive…

{Survive… Survive…} My brain kept playing over and over again.

I spotted a car on a nearby road and had a feeling there would be a village or something further ahead; I picked myself up, took a deep breath, and kept walking…


“I hate purple…” I spat.

I watched from a distance as the same car from earlier parked next to an old isolated cottage in the middle of nowhere; no town, village, or city in sight. An elderly woman got out the car and waddled to her home and went inside, closing the door behind her.

At this point I was beyond desperate, I could safely say without exaggeration that I was actually dying at this point; I was starving and dehydrated, and hadn’t slept properly in weeks. So after making sure my phone and Kroksbane were well-hidden, I tiredly shambled over to the cottage and knocked on the door. While I waited for an answer, I looked at the sign above the door.
[Pereira]
I hummed as the sign meant nothing significant to me, and I continued to wait.

A little while later, the door opened the same old lady appeared, she looked at me and frowned.

“Do you… Do you have any food?” I asked hoarsely, my throat dryer than the Sahara Desert.

She tilted her head aside, not knowing what I said; before I remembered I was in Portugal, I used my hands to imitate eating food, and made a few munching sounds.

“Food?” I said again.

She opened her mouth and nodded with understanding, and went back inside; a moment later she came back with a small basket containing some bread, gammon, and a glass bottle of milk.

“Thank you, thank you so much…” I wheezed looked up at her with a look of pure joy.

She smiled, and I dipped my head with respect as I backed away and she closed the door. I sat on her doorstep and began to quickly consume the food, I was so foolish to leave the six ponies without any supplies; what was I thinking!?
After washing down my meal with the milk, I put the lady’s basket down on the doorstep and headed off until the cottage was out of sight.

I smiled to myself, and had a lovely warm feeling inside; that charitable act of kindness had saved my life. I’d been through so much, with Ingeo in Brazil and the horrors of Chernobyl in Ukraine; it was wonderful to experience something nice on my journey for once; that old woman’s act of kindness wouldn’t be forgotten.


I’d been walking for another week, when I wondered how far I’d actually walked. I pulled my phone out, luckily the thing was still intact; thanks to my modifications it was borderline Nokia strength, which is saying something, as those things could stop a bullet. I turned on the screen and looked at the map; the next orb shard was still a long way off, but I was just over halfway now.
It was then when the rain began to fall, at first it spat slightly, and I could only feel minuscule droplets of water tickling my arms, but within seconds it began to rain properly. I felt large drops of water hitting the back of my neck, making me shiver.
A single bottle of milk was just enough to keep me alive, so this rain was a godsend, I desperately looked to the sky and opened my mouth, sticking my tongue out as far as possible, trying to catch as much rain as I could. It was so refreshing, even in such a small quantity. With each drop, I felt life flowing back into my body. I took off my shirt and held it to my mouth, bunching it up and sucking more water out, my shirt was incredibly dusty at this point and provided me with an unclean drink, but at this point, my hydration was more important than a few mouthfuls of dirt.

I’d been hydrating myself for at least ten minutes, when the cold kicked in, and I started to shiver. This supposed godsend, transformed into a threat, as hypothermia could become a possibility if I didn’t find shelter.
I ignored the rain and the cold to the best of my ability, and began to trek down the muddy road.



I had walked for some time, and the rain hadn’t stopped, I was now soaked to the skin. I kept walking without looking back, I needed to find shelter. The sound of the rain was quite therapeutic though. Over the sound of the rain I heard a sound behind me, the deep rumble of an engine. I turned to see a rusty old car coming along the road towards me; I ignored it and kept walking. As it approached me it honked its horn, making me jump slightly. I turned around to see a man inside yelling at me, gesturing for me to get out of his way.

{I could always beat the fucker up, and use the car to get to the shard…} I thought for a second.

But I was not that sort of person, regardless of the fucked up events back in Brazil and Ukraine. Despite my experiences, I was still a man of righteousness, and wouldn’t condemn someone else to freeze to death in this rain.
I walked off the road, and the car whizzed past me.

“Garotoestúpido!” The driver shouted at me as he went by.

“Yeah, well fuck you too.” I said dryly.

I was tired, soaking wet, and hungry, and didn’t have the energy to shout back.


After another few minutes of walking, I saw a town up ahead in the distance. It looked like an old shanty town; the majority of the buildings had lights on, meaning it was getting pretty late. I began to speed walk towards the town, I needed to get out of this rain. Suddenly I tripped on a rock and hit the hard path beneath me, I felt a sharp pain shoot across my wrist; I grunted with pain and wheezed.
I picked myself up to find I was now coated in mud, I groaned and wiped as much off me as I could, upon wiping my left arm I was met with a stinging sensation. I looked down to find a nasty scrape all the way from my wrist to my elbow, small streams of blood trickled in-between the coat of mud.

“Could today get any worse?”

I jumped as a loud ‘BOOM’ sounded off in the clouds and a flash of white light appeared in the sky as the thunder began to start.

“Sorry I asked…” I mumbled.



I finally reached the shanty town and saw the road was empty, the houses mostly had red brick walls, no painting. The road was scattered with litter and plastic bags, and above most porches lay large sheets of corrugated iron as a form of shelter. This place was pretty slummy, but it would make do as shelter for now. I went to one of the porches and slumped myself against a wall, dry at last. I held myself tightly and closed my eyes, in attempt to get some rest.

I was able to sleep for about half an hour, before I was woken by another thunderclap, I jolted slightly and looked around, not a person in sight. I then heard the door next to me open, and a woman walked out. She was rather pale for a Portuguese woman, and she had a lot of wrinkles around her eyes.

“Ruimmenino! Sair! Sair! Váembora!” She shouted.

“English?” I asked.

“Váembora! Ruimmenino!” She repeated.

“I don’t speak your goddamn language.” I said back.

“Váembora!” She screamed.

“Alright! Alright! I’m going! Jesus…” I growled as I got up and walked off the porch and back into the rain.


I walked through the town, seeing a few dirty faces here and there looking at me. A man in a dark blue puffer jacket and a beanie hat slithered out of an alleyway and walked next to me, the man was old and scruffy, he had a front tooth missing and pretty much resembled a rat. He eyed up my pockets like a vulture would a dying animal; I ignored him and kept walking.
After a good few minutes he still hadn’t left my side.

“Fuck. Off.” I barked deeply, turning to look at him.

He jumped back, looked me in the eyes, and his lips twitched slightly. Then he quickly scampered away back towards the alley again.

“Nob jockey…” I grunted as I kept walking.

The rain didn’t stop, instead it chose to rain harder, to the point where the drops became painful, each one of them stung my cold, shivering face; I looked around frantically for a shelter. Ahead of me the road split into two different smaller roads, and at the centre cross point was a public building with some stairs, a school perhaps? I jogged to the building and climbed up the stairs to find it was locked, and there was no rain shelter either. I sighed in disappointment and climbed back down the stairs. I then looked around the small stairwell to find it was hollow, and underneath the porch was a small space, enough to fit a person or two. I shrugged and squeezed under the steps, getting myself covered in more mud, which really didn’t matter to me, as I was filthy enough.

I lay there shivering under the stairs for a good hour, the temperature had dropped as night began to fall, and I needed some warmth before hypothermia truly set in. I searched around the small space and found a torn bin bag. I had no choice but to take it and cover myself with it, at this point in time, anything and everything was a useful item, no matter how filthy or disgusting it was.

“What I’d give right now for a hot bath…” I mumbled, gagging slightly at the smell of the bin bag.

It stunk of rotten food, I opened it up to find some blackened mouldy bread and some wrappers, I shook the bottom slightly and the smell only got worse, and I almost threw up. As the wrappers moved, a dead seagull came into sight, it was stiff and cold, looking like it had been dead for quite a few days.

“Well, I guess I could be worse off.” I shrugged.

I crawled to the exit and dumped the contents of the bag outside, before curling up under the bag. I closed my eyes, blocked out the smell and the cold, and just let the sound of the rain carry me off to sleep.


About an hour or two later, I was awoken by the sound of yet another thunderclap. I jolted as the unexpected booming caught me off guard. I looked outside to see the weather hadn’t changed, it was raining more than ever now, looking up at the clouds told me the storm wasn’t going to end for quite some time, the clouds were almost as black as the night itself. Very faintly over the sound of the rain I could hear another car. Judging by the sound of things, it was getting closer, it got louder and louder, until the volume came to a standstill, telling me that the car had come to a halt; I heard the door open and then slam shut, and then a second door being opened.

“Você pode morrer para todos I cuidado! Você estúpido menina!” A man shouted.

I then heard a young girl scream in pain. I quickly crawled to the exit of my shelter and stuck my head out to see what was going on. The car was white, and the bonnet had a strange black symbol painted on it, it almost looked like a hand or something.
The man was on the other side of the car, and I could just about see him, he was struggling. He walked away from the car, and I saw a horrible sight before me. He was holding a young girl by her hair, dragging her back; she was kicking and screaming in pain.

“Ser silenciosa criança! Parar de gritar ou I irá cortar o seu língua de fora!” He growled.

The girl kept struggling and yelping, and the man then smacked her in the jaw, she spluttered and kept sobbing loudly. The man growled and grabbed her arm, before throwing her to the ground.

“Por favor pai! Por favor!” The girl wailed.

She attempted to get up and cling to the man’s leg, in response he hit the girl in the face a second time, harder than before; he kicked her back to the ground and spat on her. He then got in the car and drove off.
The girl lay there in the rain, sobbing loudly; the poor thing simply curled up into a little ball in the road and wept. She was already soaking wet from the pouring rain and needed some shelter. I had just spent about an hour walking in the storm, so I felt a ton of sympathy for her.

“Hey, over here.” I weakly called out.

I didn’t have the energy to shout properly and my words did not reach her; I tried to shout to her again, but to no avail, my tired voice was drowned out by the sound of the torrential rain. After a moment’s though, I took my phone out and switched to the LED light button, and shone the bright light at her for a second before turning off the phone. She looked up and saw my face. I gestured for her to come closer, nodding slightly. She looked scared, very scared, but the rain eventually drove her to get up and come to me. I shuffled back and gave her some room to come into the small space, she was hesitant at first, but eventually crouched down and squeezed in with me.

She was very thin, so she didn’t take up much room; she stayed at the entrance for a few seconds, not sure what to do, if she should trust me and join me, or stay by herself. I put my hand in my pocket and she quickly flinched and lent back, I looked at her, nodded slowly to show it was safe, and I carried on rummaging in my pockets. I found the handkerchief Rarity had made me, and passed it to her.

“Obrigada...” She mumbled, wiping her face and arms.

I simply smiled and looked back to my phone again, my battery was on ninety eight percent. The girl looked at the phone curiously, and then to me; I turned the phone off and put it inside my pocket.
I decided I needed to break the ice with this poor girl so I could check her over, to see if she was alright. By the sounds of her cries earlier, she had been hit pretty hard. I edged closer to her, and she instantly moved away.

“Por favor…” I said gently.

She shook her head and stayed put, so I tried a new tactic; I pointed at myself.

“Callum.” I said.

She frowned in confusion.

{I’m telling you my name you silly tit…} I thought to myself.

I pulled out my phone again, and pointed to it.

“Phone.”

Then I pointed to myself.

“Callum.”

I then hummed with curiosity as I pointed to her; which was when she finally understood what I was getting at.

“B... Bu… B-Bunnie…” She stuttered.

I extended my arm to shake her hand gently, I nodded slightly as I said her name with a smile.

“Bunnie.”

I was finally able to crack a smile out of her, which I could only just see with the little light provided. Unfortunately the smile didn’t last long, as she whimpered in pain as she put a hand to her forehead, and then she began to cry; I shuffled closer and put my hand on her arm, and she flinched once again, but did not move, as she simply continued to cry, louder now.

“Sshh… Sshhshshsshh…” I hushed.

Without warning the girl lunged forward and latched onto me, and sobbed into my chest, she tightly gripped my arm and pressed her cheek into my shoulder, and just didn’t stop crying.

{Oh you poor thing… What the fuck has that man done to you…?} I thought.

I didn’t even think about what I did next, it was on natural impulse. I put both my arms around her and cuddled her; with my right hand I began to pat her back gently to the rhythm of a human heartbeat.

“Ssshh…” I hushed again, still patting the rhythm.

“Não é justo.” She coughed.

I said nothing, and just continued hugging her and shushing her for the next few minutes until she finally calmed down and sat back.

“Obrigada senhor…” She sniffed, rubbing her eyes.

I merely nodded and smiled, I wanted to tell her it was okay, but I knew about as much Portuguese as a faithful nun knew about sex; basically, fuck all. Pardon the pun.

“Quem é você?” Bunnie asked.

“I’m sorry; I don’t speak Portuguese, I’m English.” I said slowly.

The girl looked at me blankly, and then swallowed; she blinked at me a few times, as if she were trying to process my words.

“English.” I repeated, pointing to myself.

Her eye widened with shock, as if I had just told her that I was God himself or something.

“You… You… You’re English?” She said with difficulty.

This was my turn to be confused; she just spoke English, and her accent sounded English.

“Yes, I’m English.” I answered.

Without warning she latched onto me again.

“Oh my god! Oh my fucking god! You’re English!” She shouted.

“Wait, so, you are as well?” I asked.

“Yes! Yes! Oh my fucking god you’re English!” She shouted a second time.

My mind was now boggled, this girl was British. I looked around in all directions, trying to process this.

{What the actual fuck is going on here!?} I thought to myself.

I looked back to Bunnie to see her crying, but not like before; she was crying with joy. Tears were streaming down her cheeks but she had a great big grin on her face, the sort of grin you can’t control, when you simply cannot hold in your happiness any longer.

“What are you doing here? Who are you? How did you find me?” She asked, firing the questions like bullets.

“Not so fast.” I said, I had some questions of my own.

She tilted her head.

“What the heck is going on? I heard you talking fluent Portuguese a second ago, and now you’re English? Who was that man?” I paused, “Who are you?”

The girl couldn’t sit still, she was shaking all over, and it wasn’t because of the cold.

“M-My name’s Bunnie; I was born in England. That man… He’s… He’s my father…” She sighed.

“Ok… Wait, what?” I said in shock and disbelief.

“Yeah, he’s my dad. I lived here in Portugal a long time ago, he’s violent and horrible and runs a gang. My mum and I ran away from him when I was still a little girl, when he couldn’t find us he eventually formed a large drug cartel, they’re ruthless and will kill anyone who stands up to them, even the Portuguese police are afraid of them!” She told me.

That fucker was this poor girl’s father? Jesus…
However, this story still made no sense to me, I needed more information.

“I don’t understand Bunnie, what are you doing here if you live in England? Why did you come back here? Why are you with that guy?” I asked, firing my own range of questions.

Bunnie took a deep breath, and calmed herself down, so she could tell me her story.

“Right… My mum was forced to marry him, she was a slave. He abused her, hit her, raped her. Then one day, they had me; things got no better, if anything I made things worse, my dad started to take more drugs, and then started to trade slaves to other cartels. I overheard him on the phone, saying that I was going to be a sex slave when I grow up.”

{What… The… Fuck…?} I thought, already starting to feel sick inside.

“Fucking hell…” I mumbled.

“After that, mum packed some bags, and we ran away to our grandparents, from there they set us up with a place to stay in England. We tried to let that part of our life go; we changed our family name so we couldn’t be traced, and from there we’ve lived our lives as normally as we could.” She explained.

“Wow… That’s one heck of a life story… But, that doesn’t explain why you’re here now...” I asked.

Bunnie paused, and rubbed the back of her neck, and then she took a long sigh.

“About two months ago, he found us. He still had contacts in England; they came for us… They… They kicked the door down and started shooting everything and trashed the house…” She said, then stopped to take another deep breath.

In the little light given, I was just able to spot a tear running down her right cheek. The poor girl has gone through so much trauma; she began shaking more than ever and her words were choked.

“They took me and mum, they put a bag on my head, and they poisoned me or something because I blacked out. It felt like I was asleep for days on end…
When I woke up, mum was gone, I was in a room, all on my own…” She continued, shivering even more.

I put my hand on her arm again to find she was practically vibrating! She could give Michael J Fox a run for his money in a shaking contest... I rubbed up and down her arm to keep her calm.

“Then… Then he, he was there… He walked into the room… I didn’t even recognise him… Then he squatted in front of me and told me ‘Daddy’s got you’, and I’ve been imprisoned here since.” She concluded.

“Jesus fucking Christ…” I breathed.

“I can’t leave, I tried to run away, and his gang found me, they took me back to him, he hit me, and he didn’t stop hitting! I was screaming but nobody came and he just didn’t stop hitting me! He didn’t stop! HE DIDN'-

“Hey, hey, calm down, it’s ok…” I soothed.

But to no avail, she burst into tears and planted her face into my chest and began to wail. For some reason I felt inclined to look after her. I barely knew her, and I had a mission to fulfil; yet I felt like I needed to do something about this.

“Do you know where your mum is?” I asked.

Ufmffummphu!Mfumphu-

“Bunnie, I can’t hear you…” I interrupted.

She pulled back from my chest, her eyes still streaming with tears.

“I… I don’t know… I haven’t b-been allowed out of m-my room since I came here… All my meals are brought to me, I can only leave to go to the toilet, and even then, I’m followed by a guard…” She said, taking a deep breath.

“Well, she might have made it out; you should run away, he might come back.” I advised.

“That’s the point…” Bunnie said dully, “This has happened once before. He locked me out as punishment, but he came back the next day.”

“So, basically this is an extreme version of ‘the naughty step’.” I joked.

With that comment, I was able to squeeze a smile out of her, which was always good.

“Pretty much…” She agreed.

“So, why not run away?”

“I can’t…”

“Why not?”

“Do you honestly think he’d give me the chance? He’s got his gang all around this town, if they see me leave, they’ll get me… And if they see you with me, they’ll kill you.” She said.

“Many have tried…” I said.

“They’re armed Conor-”

“Callum.” I corrected.

“Sorry… But Callum, they have guns, don’t even think about helping me, they’ll kill you, I’ve seen them kill people; they have no remorse.” She warned.

“I repeat. Many have tried.” I told her.

“Really?”

“Yes.”

“Ever had a gun pointed at your head?”

“Yes.”

She paused and blinked at me.

“I don’t believe you.”

I had no evidence besides the large scar on my chest and the marks on my arm from Brazil, but those were from a knife, not exactly a gun.

“I can’t exactly prove it to you right now, can I?” I asked rhetorically.

“So you’re trying to tell me you’ve been at gunpoint?” She questioned.

“Yes. I’m not exactly your average British kid am I? I’m here in Portugal for crying out loud.” I answered.

Bunnie stopped and sighed, and then came to me with a whole new mind frame.

“So… Why are you here? Who are you?” She asked.

I took a sigh, a very long sigh. I recalled back to the time in the aeroplane cargo hold, when I told Fluttershy my whole life story. I decided I’d tell Bunnie the same, and went on to explain my life story to her. I doubt she would have believed me if I told her I was travelling with six technicolour talking ponies, so I decided to leave that part out, I altered the tale to make it seem like I went to Brazil alone after faking my death, and unfortunately got captured by Ingeo and his men.
As for Chernobyl, I skipped that part, as I didn’t want my adventure to seem too impossible for her to believe.
It took a long time to tell her everything, and we certainly became comfortable with each other’s company as I revelled on about my story, from Ingeo’s torture, to attending my own funeral in disguise...

“Wow…” She breathed.

“So yeah, that’s my life.” I finished.

“That’s pretty interesting; I guess we’ve both been through a little trouble…” She said.

At that, I gave a slightly amused huff.

“So, how come you’re here now?” She asked.

“Well, I wanted to travel the world, Portugal happened to be the next on the list.” I answered.

She hummed, before looking down and clenching her fists, trying to warm up her fingers, which were pale as cream from the icy cold that surrounded us.

“So, what part of England are you from?” I asked, trying to make some more small talk.

“Southeast, in West Sussex.” She answered.

“Really?” I asked in shock.

“Yeah, in a place called Burgess Hill.”

My heart skipped a beat or two as I took a blast from the past.

“You are joking…?” I said in complete and utter disbelief.

“No, why?” She asked.

“I lived really close to Burgess Hill! In Crawley!” I exclaimed.

“What!?” She squealed in surprise.

{She’s from Burgess Hill! This is awesome!} I thought merrily.

“Oh… My… Gosh… You’re him aren’t you…?” Bunnie breathed.

I hummed in confusion.

“You’re Callum Horncastle aren’t you? That boy in Crawley, that was stabbed in his house last year in June? The whole place was trashed, in Ifield right? The killer was never caught, there was no evidence to trace him! It was all over the news for weeks! Oh my gosh! You’re HIM aren’t you?” She squealed in excitement.

I began to smile, which gave her my answer.

“You’re Callum fucking Horncastle! Oh my god I’m talking to Callum Horncastle!” She continued to squeal.

“Alright, calm down, I’m not a celebrity, I’m just a walking dead man.” I joked.

She didn’t laugh, as she was in shock, she just looked at me, her mouth agape.

“You look different, from the pictures they showed.” She mumbled.

“Well, it’s been just over a year, a lot’s changed.” I replied, running my fingers through my hair.

“Yeah… It has…” She agreed, looking down.

“Hey, it’s going to be okay.” I hushed, nudging her arm.

“How can you say that? I’ve been kidnapped and I’m being held hostage!” She blurted out, before she began to sniff.

“I’m going to help.” I said, lowering my head in attempt to make eye contact.

“How can you do anything?” She choked.

“I’ve already said, I’m not just some average kid. I’m dangerous when I need to be.” I replied.

“Have you ever killed a man?”

I looked at the ground and sighed, I had killed, more than I’d like to admit.

“Yeah, I have… Quite a few actually...”

“Oh…” She said, taken aback slightly.

I looked back to the first time I ever killed, the clone of myself. It was one of the most traumatic experiences I’ve ever had, meaning that killing other men wasn’t as difficult. They say that once you have drawn your first blood, it is easy to kill again; it takes away your initial fear of ending life.

“I have seen things Bunnie. I’ve done things that not many people in the world have done, or ever will do. I’ve had to kill men. I’ve had to beat someone to death with my bare hands just to save my own skin. Since I left my home and faked my death, my life has been based on survival, I’m not given much choice now.” I explained reluctantly.

Bunnie looked down, before taking one of hands.

“Callum I really want you to help me, but I don’t think you can, my father’s gang is dangerous, one of the most feared gangs in all of Portugal.” She told me.

“I destroyed the most feared gang in Brazil, and killed its leader, Ingeo Montenegro. Try me.” I retorted.

“How can you prove that?” She questioned.

“I have a picture of Brazil if that’s worth anything; I also have a scar on my chest which he left me.” I replied.

“Can I see?” She asked.

“Which one?”

“The picture.”

I took my phone out of my jacket and went to my gallery. The many pictures I had taken came into view and I had to quickly scroll past all the ones with the ponies in them in order to hide them. I went to my early pictures and found one of my first pictures, a picture of me sitting on a dead crocodile in the jungles of Brazil.

“Wow…” Bunnie breathed.

“Why would I lie Bunnie?” I said.

Bunnie said nothing, and just stared at the picture, and then eventually to me.

“Now let me help you.” I offered, holding out my hand.

She hesitated at first, but soon lent forward and shook it gently.

“Okay… Thank you…” She murmured.

“Tomorrow in the morning, I’m getting you out of here, I promise.” I reassured her.

“I don’t believe in promises anymore.” She huffed.

“Then that’s something we’re going to fall out on.” I joked, chuckling slightly.

“Why’s that?” She asked curiously.

“Because I’m a Horncastle, I hold a vow by blood. A Horncastle never breaks his promise.” I told her.

She stopped and took a small breath, slightly star struck by my words.

“I’ve never broken my promises Bunnie, I mean it; I am true to my word...”

“Okay…” She replied as she smiled.

I lay down on my side and tried to rest on the hard ground below, and found it very difficult. I closed my eyes nonetheless. Without warning, I felt Bunnie lie down right next to me, her back touching mine.

“I’m cold…” She said.

I don’t really know why I did what I did next, perhaps it was driven by a instinct. I rolled over and put an arm around her and held her tightly, giving her my body warmth, and feeling hers in return.

“Thank you…” She whispered.

I only just heard her over the pounding rain outside; I closed my eyes and held Bunnie close, protecting her like a wolf protects its pup. For reasons beyond me, Bunnie was somewhat important to me now. She’d appeared out of nowhere and needed my help, and I was going to do just that; for no other reason than that it was the right thing to do.
Within a few minutes she was asleep, she didn’t snore, she just quietly breathed in a slow, calm, relaxed state, and not long after that, I fell asleep too…


I awoke the next morning to find I hadn’t moved an inch; Bunnie was still in my arms. I tried to wiggle my fingers to find I couldn’t feel them, sleeping so still for so long had given me a dead arm.
The rain outside had stopped, and a warm orange-yellow light shone into our little hidey hole. I yawned and stretched my legs slightly, before tensing up my torso, as I did so my upper back crunched, causing me to sigh in relief.

“Bunnie…” I said quietly.

She did not respond, she didn’t move in the slightest.

“Bunnie.” I repeated, louder than before.

She moaned slightly and moved one of her arms.

“Come on, time to wake up.”

“No sir…” She mumbled in sleep talk.

“Oi, come on, wakey wakey.” I said gruffly as I moved my left arm, which she was lying on.

At last, the Sleeping Beauty awoke.

“Huh, what?” She mumbled, confused.

“My arm is numb, care to move?” I asked.

“Sorry.” She groaned as she took a stretch, nearly crushing my arm.

“Oouuch.” I growled as she stretched.

“Sorry!” She said again and rolled the other way.

I raised my numb arm and gave it a small shake, and was greeted with the ‘pins and needles’ feeling from my hand to my shoulder, before it went back to feeling normal.

“Wow, I wasn’t dreaming, you really are still alive…” Bunnie said.

“Yup, call me Harry Potter, for I am the boy who lived.” I chuckled.

Bunnie giggled, and bloody hell was it adorable; cuter than Fluttershy’s by far!

“Let’s get out of this shithole…” I yawned as I got on my hands and knees to exit the little pit.

“No argument here.” She replied, crawling out with me.

The sun was bright and warm; it was as though it hadn’t been raining at all. The ground was slightly damp from the rain, but had mostly evaporated already. Bunnie stood next to me and stretched, I turned around to face her, and this was when I finally got a proper look at her.
She looked about my age, perhaps a little younger; she had chest length, dark brown hair. Her nose was round and button-like, just like mine. Her lips were evenly shaped and ruby red. Her skin was a little paler than mine, and looked smooth as silk. She looked a little bit like me to be honest; as in, she had some similar facial features, such as a perfectly rounded chin and a large, smooth forehead. Not to mention the cute baby cheeks.

And then I noticed her eyes…

Her iris was dark brown on the outside edges, but as the colour came closer to her pupils, they became a beautiful light hazel with a small tint of green. Her pupils were still wide with fear, but within those pupils I saw a cloudless night of twinkling stars, northern lights glistened and shone a whole array of colours.

I could only describe what I saw with three simple words...

She was beautiful…

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