• Published 15th Apr 2021
  • 1,010 Views, 76 Comments

Bound Snow - notaproxy



A human makes a faustian bargain to save their own life, ending up as a griffin chick in the care of Fluttershy. With dark powers hanging over their head, will they be able fulfill their end of the bargain even if it means betraying their new family?

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Asking Questions

995 CE
(Twilight Sparkle)
I let out a sigh of contentment as I consumed another Considerable Cup of Celestia Condoned Creamy Caffeinated Cappuccino Coffee (C8 for short). It had been a tough week. Recently the Princess had assigned more and more bizarre tasks. She insisted that I 'get more experience in the field' that I 'might even make some friends if I left the library for once' and that I 'needed to take a shower more than once a month'. While I trust the Princess implicitly and would never dare to doubt her infallibility, I have to wonder about some of her recent assignments. Fieldwork is all well and good, but everypony knows that success comes from one's ability to pass standardized tests and recite previous works, not solve frustrating and vague real-world problems that don't even always have a correct answer. With all she is asking, even I am having trouble keeping up with the workload in addition to my more traditional studies.

With my brief respite over, I turn back to the project I am working on.

On The Melting Point Of Thaumicly Aware Crystal

Sparkle, T

An object reported to be the remains of a mirror made of thamumicly aware crystal (TAC) is analyzed in order to explore the conditions required to melt TAC, a phenomenon that has never been observed in laboratory conditions. The remains, as well as the surrounding areas, were examined by comparing the results of three standard thaumic tests with baseline TAC, as well as the observations of Starswirl et. al. (100 BCE). The result of this examination suggests that the artifact must have been subjected to temperatures of 108 C to melt. As these temperatures are observed nowhere except in the interior of the sun, more testing is...

I was interrupted by a knock. Without looking up from my work, I granted the knocker permission to enter. It was a member of the Solar Guard, the symbol on his uniform indicating a lieutenant. Seeing a lieutenant doing a trivial task was enough to get my attention.

"Ma'am, the Princess requires your presence in the court-side tea room."

Great, another assignment. At least I will have an excuse to put off this paper.

I grabbed one of the books I was going to cite so I would have something to read on the way as we left for the Princess's favorite tea room. In partiality no time, my study of the material properties of thamumicly aware crystal was interrupted by the guard announcing that we had arrived. A quick knock later and the lieutenant and I were standing at attention in front of the personification of the sun.

"Twilight, have you been getting enough sleep?" Was the first thing out of my teacher's mouth. My eye twitched at the question. I would be getting more sleep if she let up on the work. Probably. If there wasn't a good book nearby.

"I have been doing fine Princess, " I replied, suppressing my frustration. "However, I do have much work to do. May I ask why you summoned me?"

"For the thousandth time Twilight, you can call me Celestia."

"Of course Princess," I replied with no intention of changing my naming convention.

With a sigh, the Princess continued. "Recently in the small town of Ponyville, just down the mountain, an object was discovered that had some sort of teleportation enchantment on it. Anytime it would get far from the town, it would teleport back."

That was certainly concerning. I had recognized the name Ponyville from talks with my brother. About seventy-five percent of all good going to or from Canterlot passed through the town. That, when combined with its position near the Everfree and one of Equestria's largest damns made the small town surprisingly strategically important. Perhaps the object the Princess mentioned is some sort of explosive meant to disrupt the capital? Not likely. I know there are S.M.I.L.E. agents in the area who could take care of something like that, plus I doubt the Princess would send me out of Canterlot for something as mundane as a teleporting bomb.

It was at this point I realized the Princess had stopped talking a while ago. A little embarrassed at being so caught up in my thoughts, I indicated that the Princess should continue.

"A S.M.I.L.E. agent in Ponyville requested a magic expert to come down and look at it, and I recommended you. Please pack your things for a day trip. The lieutenant here will arrange transportation for you and Spike."

That was all the Princess was giving me? There is no way she would send me on a mission like this without some sort of twist.

"While you are in Ponyville, I have a secondary objective for you."

Ah, there it was.

"I would like you to see if you find any friends well you are there. I know you have not been having luck in Canterlot. I am hoping that a change of scenery will allow you to open up a bit."

I agree with a sigh. the Princess had been giving me 'secondary objectives' like this for a while now, each of which I have enthusiastically failed. I am not one to settle for anything but perfect, but if success means listing to some random mare ramble on about sports or animals or makeup or farming or parties or something, I am fine with a B.

"Of course Princess"

"Good. Then please go pack," I turn to leave before being interrupted "Oh, and lieutenant. Please tell the staff to draw a bath for Miss Sparkle. I don't want her falling out of the sky because her charioteers fainted."


(Applejack)

"Could you state your name for the record?"

"Applejack," I say to the mare in front of me, trying my best to stay calm. This had not been how today was supposed to go. I had been helping the cows when the mares in black showed up. Apparently, the egg that Pinkie Pie had found yesterday went missing from the Griffonian embassy and appeared on Fluttershy's front porch. Now S.M.I.L.E. was all over town trying to figure out how a live egg made it from a secure location in Canterlot to a cottage in Ponyville in only six hours.

"Where were you last night?" The slick city pony with his slick suit and slick shades asked.

"Ah was at home, asleep. The rest of ma family will tell ya the same thing. Us farm folk are early to rise, early to bed."

"Have you been to Canterlot, or been in contact with anyone who has been there recently?"

"Ma friend Rarity goes to Canterlot on occasion, but ah don't know the last time she was up there."

"How much did you interact with the griffin egg that was found in Ponyville yesterday?"

"I didn't have much to do with it. I only saw it after all the excitement was done. I pretty much just got the guard."

"I see. Moving on. What is your opinion on griffins and Griffonia?"

"I ain't got nothing against dem feather dusters. My grandpa fought them in the war, but that was an awfully long time ago. I just wish those stubborn birds would give in and let Celestia help them."

"I see. I think that is all the questions I have for you right now. Would you please tell Miss. Bell to come in as you exit? And be sure not to leave town for the next few days in case we have more questions."

"Ain't no problem"


(Rarity)

"Could you state your name for the record please?"

"Rarity Bell." I can't believe I am going to lose another day of work over all this. Of course, I would not hesitate to give all the help I can, but this is ridiculous. Ponyville had nothing to do with that egg after it got on to the train to Canterlot. Besides, I know for a fact that nopony in Ponyville would be so cruel as to steal an egg. At least I get to see the standard S.M.I.L.E. suit up close. I must compliment the designer, it looks sharp on both a colt and a mare.

"Could you tell me what you were doing last night?"

"Oh, I was working on this fabulous design. I got inspired by the purity and tragedy of that egg and just had to get it on paper. My boutique is right in town. Surly the night patrol can verify that my light was on."

"I have been told that you frequently travel to Canterlot. When was the last time you went and have you ever been to the Griffonian embassy?"

"I haven't been up the mountain in about a month. A shame really, fashion moves so fast. There have been a few times when I stopped by the embassy. I have not seen much of the interior though. I had to drop off a few dresses I designed for state dinners hosted there."

"What interactions did you have with the egg that was found in Ponyville yesterday?"

"Well, I don't mean to brag, but I saved the poor things life. I caught it with my magic and stopped it without leaving a single crack.

"I see. One last question Miss. Bell. What is your opinion on Griffonia and griffins?"

"I don't have anything against griffins if that is what you are insulating. To be completely honest, sometimes I am a little jealous. Griffin feathers and coats come in so many colors and designs, I would love to be able to design for more of them. It is such a shame most griffins are more concerned about making a quick bit than appreciating beauty."

"I believe that is all the questions I have for you today Miss. Bell. Please make sure to stay in town for the next few days in case we have more questions. Oh, and could you send in that rainbow-haired pegasus?"

"Of course dear."


(Rainbow Dash)

"Could you state your name for the record?"

"Rainbow Dash. Fastest flier in Equestria and future Wonderbolt." I can't believe these suits were treating us like this. All we did was help, and here they were, treating my friends like criminals. From the few things I heard well trapped in here waiting, S.M.I.L.E. had trashed Sugarcube Corner and Fluttershy's place looking for 'clues'. I bet these jerks are just power-mad and throwing their weight around just because they can.

"Fastest flier in Equestria you say? So how long would it take you to get to Canterlot and back?"

"About two hours each way. I know what your thinking, but I didn't do anything."

"I just want to know the facts. So, where were you last night?"

"I was just at home like usual."

"Do you have anyone that can verify that?"

"Um... N..No, I live alone. But I didn't do anything!"

"Like I said, I am just looking at the facts. As the facts stand, there was enough time for you to get to Canterlot and return with the egg. You have a friend who has been to the embassy multiple times and another friend who referees to griffins with racial slurs. Is there anything you want to confess? It would make this whole thing easier."

"Wha...who... For the thousandth time, me and my friends didn't do anything! We were just trying to help! It is the lest we could do after what happened with Pinkie."

"Oh, and what happened with Pinkie."

"Nothing! It was just an accident! She had never seen a griffin egg before and thought it was some other kind of egg. She was going to make cupcakes with it, but Fluttershy and Rarity stopped her before she could."

"So you're saying this Pinkie attempted to kill and eat an unborn, sentient creature?"

"WHAT! NO! PINKIE WOULD NEVER DO THAT! IT WAS AN ACCIDENT! STOP TWISTING MY WORDS!"

"Please calm down miss. There is no need to yell. Neither you nor any of your friends are being charged with anything as of this moment. I see you are upset, so I just have one last question for you, then I will get out of your mane. What is your opinion on Griffinstone and griffins?"

"Okay... jerk... I don't know much about Griffinstone, but griffins are good fliers. They not as fast as us pegasi, but they great endurance fliers. Let me tell you, never do a pegathon against one. I heard the best of them can fly all day and night straight."

"Well, Miss. Dash, that is all I need from you today. Please stay in town for the next few days. You are not under arrest, but we would like you nearby just in case. Also, could you see Miss. Pie in?"

"Sure, but you better not be mean to her, or you'll regret it."


(Pinkie Pie)

"Could you state your..."

"Oh, oh, oh. Are you using a repetitive format to give the story a unique structure?"

"What? No. I was just going to ask what your name was.

"Okay. I'm Pinkie Pie! What's your name!"

"You can call me Agent Tight Lips. Now would you mind if I ask you some questions about the egg!"

"Oh.... sure I guess. Sorry, I ruined your pattern. I have been ruining a lot of things recently."

"I see. Could you tell me what happened?"

"I...I was just trying to do something nice. Ponyville doesn't have a lot of creatures besides ponies. I guess that kinda makes sense, pony is in the name of the town, and the title of the show. But I was really happy that we would be getting somepo...someone from a different culture around town."

"Isn't there a zebra that lives nearby?"

"Ya, but she is pretty scary, and these days you need more than just token minority representation."

"I think we are getting off-topic. Could you tell me more about what happened with the egg?"

"Right. I was making some cupcakes for the 'Welcome to Ponyville' party I was going to throw when the new griffin came to town. I really wanted to make them special, so I decided to use the ostrich egg I had ordered. Ostrich eggs have to come all the way from southern Farasi, so they are really expensive, but I had always wanted to try and bake with one, so I saved up for it. I was just able to buy one a few days ago, so that is what I thought the big egg that turned up on my doorstep was. Looking back, there was no way an egg could have traveled all the way here so fast, but those types of things just happen to me, so I didn't think anything of it. So I thought this griffin egg was an ostrich egg and was about to use it to make the cupcakes for the 'Welcome to Ponyville' party, but then Fluttershy and Rarity stopped me. If they hadn't, that poor griffin would have never had a single birthday party, and it was all my fault."

"I see. Do you mind if we move on to more recent events?"

"I guess not..."

"Okay, then can you tell me what you were doing last night."

"I...I was in my room,... crying. The Cakes can tell you. I think I really worried them. Just another thing I ruined."

"I think I have a good picture of what happened. I have one last question. What is your opinion of griffins and Griffinstone?"

"They are just like us, but a little different. We both could learn a lot from each other."

"Thank you, Miss. Pie. That will be all for today. You can go, just please stay in town in case we need you again. Could you please send in your last friend when you leave?"

"What?! That's it! You're not going to arrest me and then banish me! or put me in jail! Or banish me, then put me in a jail in the place you banished me!?"

"No Miss. Pie. If you don't mind a little breach of protocol, I would like to give you some advice. What happened was an accident, even somepony like me who has never meet you in my life can see that. Instead of punishing yourself for what almost happened, you should learn from your mistake. Be more careful in the future, don't assume that everything will work out, but plan to make it work out. And in this case, that means making sure that that little grif lives the best life it can."


(Fluttershy)

"Could you please state your name for the record?"

"Fluttershy."

"I'm sorry, I didn't catch that?"

"Fluttershy."

"Okay. I can tell you are nervous Miss. Fluttershy, but I can assure you, neither you nor your friends are in any trouble. We just want to know what happened."

"That's good. Um, if you don't mind me asking, what happened to the egg?"

"What happened to the egg? I am afraid I can't give you any details, but rest assured that it is in a secure location and is being provided the best care possible."

"That's a relief. I was so worried about it after you folks took it away."

"Speaking of which. Could you tell me what happened before you found the egg this morning?"

"Well, my friends and I were all pretty tired after yesterday, so we all went our separate ways and had planned on meeting this morning to cheer up Pinkie and put this whole ordeal behind us. I went to bed pretty early, just after I made sure all my animal friends were good for the night. I was going to stay up later, but I got really tired around ten, I think I was just wiped out from all the excitement. In the morning, just after I had breakfast, I was going to head into town, and that is when I found the egg."

"That is similar to how your friend, Miss. Pie found it, correct?"

"That's right."

"So what did you do after you found the egg?"

"While I took it into town. I had hoped that one of my friends would know what to do. We decided to take it to the guard again, but by the time we got there, S.M.I.L.E had had already showed, up."

"I see. Do you have any guesses as to who might have brought the egg to you?"

"No, I think only my friends, the Cakes, and the guards knew it was in town."

"Do you have any idea why whoever stole the egg might have given it to you?"

"I don't know. I guess I hear that a lot of ponies think of me as the nurturing type. While that is very flattering, I don't think I am ready for a little foal,.. er chick."

"Okay, I have one last question for you. What..."

"I am terribly sorry, but I am feeling really dizzy, can I have..."

"Miss. Fluttershy, are alright? Gah! What was that flash!? The egg! That's impossible! We are in an anti-magic cell! Miss Fluttershy!? What happened? Can you hear me?! Miss Fluttershy! MEDIC! MEDIC! I NEED A MEDIC IN HERE!"


(???)

We had been in this non-space for what seemed like a long time, as much as time had meaning here, going over the details of the contract. At long last, we had finally come to an agreement. Something that was at least, acceptable, to both sides, although the figure defiantly got the better deal. That just left one question.

"Why you? Well, a verity of reasons." The figure responded to my unspoken question. Of course, all my questions were unspoken, as I didn't have a mouth, but the figure was always able to hear them anyway. Let's just say being a disembodied spirit is weird and leave it at that.

"For one, your introversion and asexuality should help you blend in when you are young. Plus you are smart enough to both be able to improvise and know what will happen to you if you cross me. But there is a more, essential reason."

"Let me put it this way. If you agree to my deal, you will be sent to another world which you will likely grow to love. To another family, which will love you and you will likely love back. You will live there for years, getting to know your new family and new life. Then, after you have integrated yourself into their lives and them into yours, you will mercilessly and cruelly stab them in the back. You will spend the entity of your new life with the guilt of your original sin. Every hug, every warm meal, every happy moment, tarnished by your sudden but inevitable betrayal. A betrayal that will likely see every person you ever meet hurt. Despite knowing that upfront, knowing that the deal you are making is faustian. Do you still agree?"

It was a little disturbing to hear it laid out like that, it was enough to make me hesitate. Was I really willing to possibly doom another world just for a chance at another life? While I don't wish to harm anyone, I can't do anything if I am dead. Besides, nothing is inevitable, even with this contract. With that in mind, there was only one choice. I had to keep moving forward because there was nothing left behind me.

"That, that is why I choose you."

Author's Note:

Third chapter. This one was longer then all previous chapters combined. I don't know how some authors are able to do 10,000 or even 20,000 words. Anyways, I would love to hear your thoughts.

For this weeks lore corner, I figured I would go over some demographic data! So in my version of Ponyville, you have about 50% earth pony, 25% unicorn, 25% pegasus, and Zecora. This is actually more diverse then most town of that size, as most are pretty homogeneous. Larger cities are more cosmopolitan, with most minorities living in one. For griffins in particular, the largest equestrian griffin community is in Manehatten, followed by Cloudsdale. As a bonus, ponies measure temperature in degrees C- degrees Celestia.