• Published 4th Sep 2012
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Gobbling and Other Traditional Pursuits - LadyMoondancer

Nightmare Moon was once considered an "old pony's tale." But what exactly did those old s

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Old Favors [Dark]

Author's Note: This particular tale is dark and not suggested for young kids.

Old Favors

Once upon a time, a hungry griffon was fleeing from a mob of angry ponies. They had spotted him prowling around their village and now they sought to kill him. He ran and flew, ran and flew, feathers ruffled and panting for breath, until he spotted a peasant-pony walking home, pulling a cart loaded with sacks of grain.

“Do me a favor, little pony, and hide me in your bag,” begged the griffon, “for a mob is hot on my trail.”

The peasant agreed, emptying a sack into the ditch. “Hide quickly, then.”

No sooner had the griffon crawled in and the peasant tied the bag shut than the mob caught up to her. Strong pegasi landed all around her and hardy earth ponies tossed up puffs of dust as they skidded to a stop. “Have you seen a griffon run by?” they demanded.

“No, I haven’t seen any griffons,” the peasant replied. And so the pegasi rose back into the air and the earth ponies raced off over the horizon, still searching.

“Come out, griffon, for your hunters have gone,” said the peasant, releasing the beast.

But no sooner had she done so than the griffon grabbed the little pony up in his talons. “If they’re gone then nopony will hear me devour you!” said the griffon.

“Oh griffon, griffon,” moaned the pony. “I saved you from your death and now you want to eat me!”

“Such is the way of the world. Old favors are soon forgotten,” replied the griffon.

But the pony argued, “Who says so? Only you. I say differently. Come, let us walk along the road and put the question to the first one we meet. If they agree with you, you can devour me. But if not, let me go.”

Well, the griffon agreed and they both walked along until they met an old cow walking slowly up the road. The peasant said, “Oh little old cow, settle our argument. I hid the griffon in this sack and deceived the hunters, saving him from death. Yet now he wants to eat me, claiming old favors are soon forgotten. Say it is not so!”

The cow looked from the pony to the griffon from eyes sunk in her gaunt face, and then she gazed at nothing for a while, chewing her cud and thinking hard. At last she said, “For twenty years I lived in the village, nourishing everypony with my own rich milk. Yet when I grew old and my udder withered, they drove me from their midst, and now I walk aimlessly down this road. Yes, truly old favors are soon forgotten.”

This was not the answer the pony wished to hear, so she begged the griffon to wait until they found another traveller to put the question to. The griffon grudgingly agreed, and off they went.

After a time, they came across an old sheep walking slowly along the road. “Oh little old ewe, settle our dispute,” said the pony. She poured out the whole story, how the griffon wished to devour her, no matter that she had saved his life.

The sheep looked from one of them to the other with her strange, slit pupils, and then she thought for a time. Finally she said, “For twenty years I lived in the village, and my own soft wool kept everypony warm when the winter wind blew. But when I grew old and my wool became poor and coarse, they drove me from their midst, and now I wander aimlessly without flock or home. Yes, it is true, old favors are soon forgotten.”

“You see, I am right,” said the griffon, but the pony begged him to wait until they met one more creature along the road, and the griffon finally relented.

They kept walking and soon they met a little changeling along the road by the forest.

“Oh little changeling,” said the pony, “settle our argument.” And she began to tell the story. But when she reached the part about the griffon hiding in the sack, the changeling acted bewildered.

“But how did such a large griffon fit in such a small sack?” she asked again and again, and would not believe the tale, although both the griffon and the pony insisted that it had happened that way. Finally the griffon stuck his head inside the sack to demonstrate.

“They must have been dim-witted hunters if they were fooled by that!” said the changeling incredulously, and then the griffon had to crawl all the way in to show the changeling how it had been.

“Well, little pony,” the changeling said, “show me how you tied the bag.”

So the peasant tied the bag shut.

“Well, little pony,” said the changeling, “show me how the hunters galloped away.”

The pony began to trample and pummel the bag with her four hard hooves.

“Well, little pony,” said the changeling, “tell me what the griffon said when you let him out.”

The pony swung around, kicking the changeling in the head and killing her, saying, “Old favors are soon forgotten.”