• Published 23rd Aug 2016
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The Pony Dreadfuls - No one is home



A series of stories about ponies. Dreadful in both subject and quality. Enjoy :)

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Chapter 63 - Windows to the Soul

“Why are we going this way? I thought you wanted to stop Alice?” Ki cocked his head curiously.

“I want to stop all of this.” Jack shook his massive head. “This place… it’s wrong.”

“Everything here is wrong. Where’s the orderlies? Hell, where’s the patients? I’ve never seen a nut-house this dead.” The pegasus colt noted grimly.

“Celestia’s School for Special Foals doesn’t exist… not anymore.” The horse pony replied without turning. “It burned to the ground years ago.”

“Wait? Are you sure this was supposed to be a school? Because I’m pretty sure it’s an asylum.” The colt retorted. “I mean, not bragging, but I know asylums, and this is definitely one of those. And what do you mean, ‘it burned down’? It’s right here. We’re right here in this place, that is freaky empty, but not at all burned down.”

“Nothing you see now is even remotely what’s going on. I told you, we’re in Tartarus.” Jack said glumly as he plodded down the empty hall.

“So if you’re trying to stop Alice from whatever she’s going to do, why aren’t you going that way? I mean, I can barely walk on four legs. I’m not doing that good a job at stopping you.” Ki kept talking, hoping that he was somehow buying the others the time they needed to… do what, exactly?

“You’ll see. When we get to Scarlet Hearts’ office it will make sense, I promise.” The giant’s voice carried an odd echo for a moment.

-=-=-=-=

“As you can all see, the patient is beset by extreme psychosis.” Scarlet Hearts paced the floor of the operating theatre with a sad smile. Beyond the glaring lights the shadows of assembled unicorns watched passively. “In earlier, more barbaric, times we would have little choice but to imprison this poor filly indefinitely. But now through the miracles of modern thaumatic surgery, we can remove the evil that torments this poor innocent at its very source. Doctor Westwitch, if you would care to elaborate…”

“Yes.” A green unicorn mare with a greying black mane and tail walked before her audience with arrogant confidence. “Tonight, we shall explore the mysteries of the pony brain, and it’s limitations. We will isolate and remove disharmony like the cancer that it truly is…”

-=-=-=-=-

“We only have one shot at this Diane.” Alice grinned wickedly. “You have to kill Scarlet Hearts.”

“Kill her?” Diane took a sudden step back.

“Do you want to save Thirteen or not?” The filly snapped. “If you don’t kill the Red Queen then Westwitch is going to cut up your sister’s brain.”

“Then why am I after her, why not go after this Westwitch pony?” Diane argued back. “Either way, I don’t have to kill her to save Thirteen.”

“It’s already too late.” Dorothy shook her head sadly, speaking in a hollow echoing voice. “And in any case the Witch of the West is dead. It never brought them back.”

“Dorothy, dear,” Oxwell moved to comfort the young pegasus. “It wasn't your fault.”

“Just trust me Diane! Scarlet Hearts is evil. She’s the one who keeps us all here.” the pale, blonde filly pressed on. “She caused all of this! She’s going to break every part of your sister that makes her… her… I’ve seen her do it before.”

“We should go find Charlie.” Diane shook her head, as if to clear her thoughts. “He’ll know what to do.”

“There’s no time!” Alice hissed urgently. “He stayed back to buy us what time we do have. Don’t make his sacrifice in vain… again.”

The last word cut the little changeling queen to the quick, her face contorting into a sobbing mask for only a moment before her features hardened. “I… no… not again!”

Alice smiled viciously as the trio advanced on the operating room.

-=-=-=-=-

“As you can see, ladies and gentlecolts, the basic skull structure of a changeling is really no different from that of the average unicorn pony.” An overly cheerful voice drifted from the surgery table. “Despite the outer layer of hardened skin, as you can see, changelings are not, as commonly believed, exoskeletal. In fact, in terms of skeletal structure, they are most familiar to the modern breezy. This has led many researchers to speculate the possibility of a common ancestor between the two…”

“What are you doing to my sister???” Diane screamed in rage, drawing a bemused grin from the surgeon.

“Well, depending on your point of view, it’s either a lobotomy… or maybe an autopsy. It depends on if you really want to pretend you can ‘save’ her.” The green mare flashed a manic smile to the would-be heroine.

“No… it can’t…” Diane’s brain reeled with momentary recognition, before the gaunt form of Scarlet Hearts interposed herself between them.

“Orderlies! Get those foals out of here!” She screamed desperately. “Ozwell! What are you doing?!?!”

“I’ve turned a blind eye for far too long, Scarlet. This… it isn’t right.” The older stallion pleaded with his former lover.

“I’m doing what has to be done Oz! Can’t you see? She’s gotten to you! She’s gotten to all of us!” The mare’s eyes were alight with fear and revulsion.

“It’s a pity Diane.” The thing that took the form of Westwitch sing-songed. “You really shouldn’t be allowed to play ‘follow the leader’, you’re really the worst at it!”

Without warning, the green mare was drenched by a sudden onslaught of cold water. Behind her, Dorothy stood defiantly, pail still hanging from her jaws.

-=-=-=-=-

“What the hell is this???” Ki swept the stacks of papers forcefully from the desk.

“They’re the reason we’re here…” Jack spoke softly. “They’re the reason she had to do what she did… the surgery... I didn’t understand… Alice was her own daughter...”

Scattered across the floor were reams of crayon drawings. Cheshire cats, and mock turtles and ponies laying still in grass green fields beneath a smiling lemon yellow sun in pools of fire-engine red blood.

“We thought we were saving her…” The giant colts voice rang hollow. “We were too late… And I burned it all down. But that’s not why I brought you here.” Jack Nimblehooves gestured to the window. “It’s the only window in the whole school. Look outside, it will all make sense then…”

And the night was cut by the scream of a broken mind...

Author's Note:

And there are still typos in past chapters to be hunted, I know. And they will not escape, for real, I promise. :pinkiecrazy:

But what do ya figure was on the other side of that window? :twilightoops:

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