• Published 8th Feb 2013
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Harmony's Warriors: Flutterhulk - Avenging-Hobbits

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Act II - 05 - The Long and Winding Road

Act Two:
“You Better Run”

Chapter Five:
“The Long and Winding Road”

Hoofcuff quietly surveyed the crime scene in Greifstadt. Suddenly a loud voice called out from behind her.

"Hey babe! You ever been with a REAL male?"

Hoofcuff turned at the sound of the voice. She was greeted by a couple of teenage griffins males, all eyeing her rather lustfully. Her horn flared and a bolt of magic went flying in their direction, sending them scattering with them shouting expletives as they flew off.

Stupid punks, she thought. Looking around, she saw the various military troops from Iron Will's unit mulling about, idly chatting or standing guard.

She trotted over towards one of them.

"Excuse me, but can we put a tarp up or something, we seem to have become quite the spectacle." She pointed over towards the covered carcass and the growing crowd of curious onlookers.

The soldier nodded, barking some orders to a pair of unicorn troops who nodded and lit their horns, encasing the crime scene in a special magical dome that allowed the ponies on the inside to see out, but those on the outside couldn't see in.

Almost as if they've never seen police before. She thought.

Hoofcuff let out a contented sigh as she watched the group quickly disperse, having quickly lost their enthusiasm, now that the dome was in place. Hoofcuff hated being watched, made her feel like she was under a microscope or something.

She turned towards the crime scene. She once more took in the scene, content that she wasn't being distracted by any unwanted noises.

The body under the tarp honestly didn't even look like that of a pony. It pummeled and bludgeoned beyond recognition, and the only thing even hinting that this might once have been alive was the scraps of white clothing that poked out here and there.

Starlight walked up, still chewing his gum. "Geez Boss, that's the single most disgusting thing I've ever seen in my life. Looks like a big bowl of gumbo or something."

Hoofcuff gave Starlight a frustrated look. "Starlight, if you just want to randomly point out the corpse, please, I had at least thirty griffin's doing that about thirty seconds ago." She pointed towards the dome, where a couple of the griffins remained, idly watching the dome and tossing small rocks at it every so often, causing it to ripple like a pool of water.

There was an awkward silence between the two as they both looked at the corpse.

"Starlight," Hoofcuff finally said, "Did you happen to get around to those interviews I asked for? The ones with the survivors of the attack?"

Starlight nodded. "Yeah Boss I did."


Starlight pulled out a small notebook with his magic that was covered in random doodles.

"Well boss, the griffin survivor said that our friend who caused all this turned green or something. He has trouble remembering."

Hoofcuff raised an eyebrow. "Turned green? Are you serious?"

Starlight nodded. "Yeah, the other guy said so as well. Said he was tossed from there…" he pointed to a couple dozen feet away where a tattered old backpack lay. "…to over there." He brought his hoof around so it pointed at the opposite wall, where, as if to confirm it, there was a small indent.

Hoofcuff said nothing as she trotted over to the backpack. It was a rather normal looking bag, with its contents spilled on the floor. Its contents consisted almost entirely of bottles of various sizes, all containing various forms of pain killers.

"Well, well…" Hoofcuff muttered as she levitated an evidence bag over and placed several of the bottles inside it, sealing it with a spell so it couldn't be tampered with. She then motioned towards Starlight who trotted over.

"Get this," she levitated him the bag. "Over to the evidence ponies, tell them to check it for hoofprints and such. And take the bag too."

Starlight nodded and took both bags in his magic and trotted over to a soldier, who nodded and proceeded to take the bags to a tent where the evidence was being studied.

Hoofcuff turned back to the crime scene. Weird, she thought, suddenly noticing two large, hoof shaped indentations in the ground to her left. What's this?

The weird shapes in the ground reminded Hoofcuff of hoofprints, but they seemed too much too large to be that of any pony she knew about.

She put her own hoof inside one of the holes. Whatever caused these marks had hooves at least six times the size of mine. She thought. What on earth could cause that?

She then trotted over to the opposite wall, where the imprint of the unicorn was still in the wall. She looked back towards the opposite end. Running some calculations in her head, she motioned towards Starlight.

"Starlight, how far would you make it between each of these walls?"

Starlight looked between the walls, and Hoofcuff could tell he was running some calculations of his own.

"Um….I'd say about…twenty-five feet or something. Why?" he gave her a quizzical look.

Hoofcuff then trotted over. "Well, Starlight, if what the victims are saying is true, then that means our friend managed to toss a two hundred pound unicorn twenty-five feet without so much as a second thought. What kind of pony is capable of that?"

Starlight looked at Hoofcuff and then at the crime scene. "Well, maybe she got a unicorn to jack her up, like with that crazy Fillydelphia bat nut."

Hoofcuff nodded. "I guess…" she scanned the bridge, hooves tapping the ground lightly. Something wasn't adding up. For one thing, how could a pony the size of Fluttershy be capable of such destruction? Also, if it was her, why were there those strange hoofprint like holes in the ground?

"Starlight, did you notice that." She pointed towards one of the holes in the ground.

Starlight nodded. "Yeah, I was wondering about that too. Guy had big hooves, that's for sure."

"That's if it is a pony…honestly things are looking awful suspicious…" Hoofcuff said, warily eyeing one of the guards, who simply waved back.

"What do you mean boss? I mean, everything so far is checking out with that Iron Will told us, a bunch of random blunt force trauma and dead ponies. What's suspicious?"

Hoofcuff huffed. "Starlight, I'm not one to go around piping wild conspiracy theories, you know this, but look at the evidence. We've got a small pegasus pony that apparently was able to kill two ponies with her bare hooves, crushing one to a pulp and slamming the other into the roof above…" she pointed at the hole above. "And throw a four hundred pound griffin like a rag doll. They're hiding something. I can feel it."

Starlight gave Hoofcuff a long look. "So what would they be hiding, if they're hiding anything?"

"I don't know…but something, maybe she is being jacked up by spells I don't know. I'll ask Snowflake about it, hopefully he'll be straight with me. Maybe they told him something because he's military." Hoofcuff said as she turned. Starlight cocked an eyebrow.

"But we're NEIGHS. If it were a secret, wouldn't he have told us?"

Hoofcuff shrugged. "General Iron Will told me right off the bat that he doesn't like Director Armor poking around, and these military nuts are always big on keeping it 'in the clique'. So it's worth a shot right?" she answered as she began to walk over to Snowflake, whom, the entire time, had been intensely studying the crime scene.

"Snowflake, can I ask you something?"

Snowflake spun around and snapped to attention. "Yes, what do you want?"

Hoofcuff leaned in. "Snowflake, did the General tell you any more information about Fluttershy besides what he told all of us?"

Snowflake paused and tensed up slightly. "Um, no ma'am he did not." Hoofcuff noticed he seemed to be hiding something.

"Okay then…" Hoofcuff finally said, making sure to mask her suspiciousness with a laid back tone. "Just remember, don't call me 'ma'am'. I really do prefer Agent Hoofcuff, okay?"

"Affirmative, Agent Hoofcuff." With that, Snowflake returned to studying the crime scene.

Oh he's definitely hiding something, Hoofcuff thought as she herself returned to her part of the crime scene.

Don't know what exactly, but it's something….


Days Without Incident: 1

The moon rose over the distant mountains as Fluttershy plowed onward. She hadn’t stopped walking since she came to, knowing that since New Fluttershy got out, the government would probably be right on her tail.

Her body groaned and ached in protest as it always did after an incident. Her hooves were now raw from her walking, her old horseshoes lost after the transformation. She hoped that somewhere there would be a place where she could stay the night and not attract attention.

It was freezing cold, and her breath made small clouds in front of her. But Fluttershy had lost her hoodie, leaving her exposed to the elements. She'd had to go dumpster diving for something to cover herself, and now only had an old, beat up, funny smelling trench coat to protect her from the full brunt of the frigid South Griffinhiem nights.

And that’s when she caught sight of something.

It looked somewhat like a house, Fluttershy honestly couldn’t tell in the darkness. There was a small lamp next to the building that lit up the front porch.

I really should keep going. She thought. Can’t stay in one place too long...they’ll find me for sure that way.

The building steadily grew in size until she was standing right in front of it. She paused. Her body once more groaned and sent sharp pains through her legs. She looked at the road ahead. It stretched on for what seemed like forever with absolutely no signs of civilization. She looked back at the building. It was a small home with a mailbox in the front. It reminded Fluttershy of her home in Ponyville.

At least…when I had a home.

She let out a sigh and tried to continue walking, but her body continued to protest her every movement.

Suddenly a voice called out to her. She tensed up and turned to look in the direction of the source of the voice.

It was a rather short looking griffin who stood on the front porch, babbling on in what sounded like Griffin or Old Scoltish, she couldn't tell. He beckoned towards her.

Fluttershy looked around. The road was totally and utterly deserted aside from herself. Against her better judgment she turned and walked towards the griffin, who seemed quite ecstatic.

“Lassie!” he suddenly said in Equestrian and a very thick Scoltish accent.

Fluttershy smiled slightly, No use being rude, she thought.

“Um…hello…” she replied, waving meekly.

The griffin smiled and walked up to her. “Hello lassie, what possessed ye to be out here on this frigid night aye?” he extended a talon in greeting.

“I um….” Fluttershy searched her mind for an excuse. “I think I got lost.”

“Really? ‘tis a shame lassie. Come inside, the fire’s warm and I have some soup a brewin’.” He motioned towards his home.

“Um…that would be really nice, but I really must keep going.” Fluttershy insisted, and tried to walk away.

“Nonsense lassie! It’s only fifteen degrees outside tonight! That beat up old rag ain't gonna help!" he replied, motioning towards the coat she was wearing as he walked over. "An' ye hooves look horrible! I insist, deary, come inside me house 'fore ye catch a cold or worse.” He put an arm around her and began to escort her to the house. Fluttershy reluctantly went along with it, deep down being glad with the prospect of being out of the cold.

They entered the house and the griffin closed the door behind him.

“Here’s me humble abode lassie.” The griffin motioned towards the living room. It consisted almost entirely of a table and a few chairs, a small fireplace where a kettle was brewing, and two beds. There was a door on the left that Fluttershy assumed was the bathroom, and another door that lead to a small bedroom.

“Um…wow…this is rather nice…” Fluttershy said, savoring the warmth that the fire provided.

“Aye, that it is. Not a mansion, but good enough for me and my Gladys.”

As if on cue, a loud female voice shouted from inside the bedroom. “HAMISH! What ‘ave ya managed to bring home now ya crazy wanker!”

Fluttershy darted behind the table at the sudden noise. The boy griffin simply laughed. “Oh don’t be scared lassie, that’s Gladys.” He then walked over to the bedroom and leaned in, his head disappearing into the room.

“Gladys honey, don’t be so vulgar. We ‘ave a guest.” His voice came from inside the bedroom.

“What guests come over at 3 AM Hamish!” the rather abrasive voice of Gladys screeched.

“Honey, if’in you just come out of yer cocoon and say hello…” Hamish replied, his voice sounding like he’d had this conversation many times in the past.

There was an indistinct groan and suddenly the male griffin, who was apparently named Hamish, appeared again.

“Lassie, I’d like ya ta meet me beloved wife of thirty years, Gladys.” He made a theatrical wave of his talons and a girl griffin, done up in curlers, appeared.

She eyed Fluttershy rather aggressively.

“Hamish,” she squawked. “This is a pony. What’s a pony doin’ in me house at this hour?” she crossed her talons and gave Hamish a dirty look. Hamish simply smiled.

“Now, now Gladys, this here wee lassie was a-wanderin’ outside alone. Are ya seriously going to throw this poor filly out in the cold night air?” he put a talon on Fluttershy’s shoulder.

Fluttershy hid behind her mane again. “Y-you know…I could just leave….if t-that’s okay with you.”

Hamish looked down at Fluttershy. “Nonsense lassie! As I said, it’s too cold out fer ya an' yer hooves are in no condition fer walkin'. How’s about ya stay the night eh?” he smiled a warm smile at Fluttershy.

Fluttershy blushed slightly, and thought about his offer.

Here was a nice, kind hearted fellow who was totally willing to let a complete and total stranger stay at his house for the night.

Gladys, however, only glowered at them. “Hamish, are ya seriously lettin’ a total stranger stay at the house?”

Hamish simply laughed and walked over to Gladys. “Gladys, deary, where’s the beautiful, kind hearted girl I married all them years ago? She would never let a lass like that stay out on a cold night like this would she?”

Gladys rolled her eyes. “She went ta bed ‘bout two hours ago.”

“Well wake her again, ‘cause this here mare is in need of lodging.” He gave her a playful nudge.

Fluttershy didn’t say a word as she watched the two. She was quite exhausted and simply wanted some rest.

Gladys let out a sigh, rolled her eyes, and gave Hamish a gentle hug. “Okay then…” her voice contained none of the venom from before, but rather a tone like that of a rather tried, but patient housewife. “She can stay the night.” She then looked at Fluttershy, her expression softening. “And goodness knows the lass is rather pitiful lookin’. Awful thin too. ‘ave ya eaten anythin’ lass?”

Fluttershy slowly shook her head.

“Oh righty then, I guess we can spare some soup an' shoes then.” Gladys shrugged and walked over to the fireplace. “Do ya happen to ‘ave a name lassie?” she asked as she knelt down and poured out a bowl of soup.

Fluttershy let out a breath she didn’t know she was holding and smiled. “Um, uh, yes…it’s…” she paused, mentally going down her checklist of crossword puzzle names. “You can call me Golden Feathers.”

“That’s a fine name.” Hamish chuckled as he sat down at the table. Gladys poured two more bowls and the three them all sat down and went about eating their soup.

Fluttershy quietly ate her soup, a wistful smile on her face. She thought back to the dinners she would have with her family. All of that was gone now of course, but at least right now, in this moment, she felt as if she was home.

Wow, she thought. Maybe things will start looking up for a change.


The next day, Fluttershy bid the old couple goodbye.

They had insisted that she stay, but, after breakfast, Fluttershy decided to leave, instead of risking her hurting them somehow.

They had been incredibly kind to her, having provided her with a pair of boots that were a size too big to cover her worn hooves, a new backpack, a coat and enough money they said to get her to the next town. She had asked if they had anything for her aches, and Hamish had been kind enough to lend her some pills without a second thought.

However, within a few hours of walking, all the happiness in Fluttershy had had been drained dry by the desert air. Night had fallen once again, and with it, the temperatures too. She pulled her coat a little tighter.

Her stomach rumbled as she continued onward, her aches once more making their presence known. She hadn’t eaten since that morning, and now she was regretting not asking for some food as well.

Her eyes however, caught sight of a small diner.

Her lost energy came back at the thought of food and her pace quickened ever so.

She arrived at the diner after a few minutes, and finally got a chance to see a name for the establishment.

A large neon sign blinked on and off with the words “Welcome to Gus’ Gourmet Greasy Spoon, home of the finest fried food this side of the Griffin Pass.”

Fluttershy smiled slightly, the thought of anything warm filling her stomach being a welcome thought.

She took a deep breath and opened the door. A small bell tinkled as the door swung open and she walked in.

The diner was completely bare, with the exception of a single apparently middle aged griffin who was wiping the counter. At the sound of the bell he looked up from his work and smiled.

“Hello, I’m Gus.” He said in Equestrian, if with a noticeable Scoltish accent.

Fluttershy nodded. “Hello.” She answered quietly as she quietly walked up to the counter and sat down.

“Well, you seem to be a pony. Don’t see many of those around here.” Gus said as he started to wipe the counter again. “Do you want something to eat?”

Fluttershy nodded. She figured that if she remained quiet she could simply eat and maybe ask for directions to the nearest motel.

“Well, I don’t normally serve ponies here, but I’ll see what I have, aye?” Gus said as he pulled out a small menu and slid it over to Fluttershy. “Take a look, see if there’s anything you like.”

“Thank you.” Fluttershy said as she opened the menu. She looked over the contents. Most of it was various forms of meat and most of it was completely covered in some form of fried crust or gravy.

Wow, is there anything on this menu that isn’t swimming in gravy? Fluttershy thought to herself as she paged through the menu. Her eyes eventually settled on some hay fries.

“Well? Anything?” Gus asked, leaning on the counter.

"Um, yeah, I think I'll have some hay fries and some water...if that’s okay with you." Fluttershy said.

The griffin nodded. "Sure thing lassie." he turned towards the kitchen window. "Oi! Klaus!" he shouted into the kitchen.

A large burly diamond dog wearing a chef hat appeared in the window.

"Vat?" he grumbled in an incredibly think South Griffinheim accent.

"Klaus, give this here fair lassie a spot of hay fries and water aye?" Gus said.

The diamond dog shot Fluttershy a quick glance. "Jawhol." he grumbled.

With that he turned and disappeared into the kitchen.

Gus returned to wipe down the counter. "Well, lassie, they oughta be 'round in a minute, okay?" Fluttershy nodded.

They sat there for a moment, neither speaking as Gus wiped the counter and Fluttershy simply sat there, looking at her reflected image.

Gus suddenly stopped wiping the counter and looked at Fluttershy. "You know lassie, I never got yer name." he said, smiling again.

Fluttershy's head snapped up from the counter. She had been worrying about this. Maybe, she thought, just maybe he won't know who I am, like the others...

"Um, you can call me Golden Feathers." she said, reusing the name she'd given to the old couple, as she quickly hid behind her mane, mentally kicking herself for using the same name twice.

"Ah, Golden Feathers, eh? Fine name lassie. Had a girlfriend named that once," Gus said, resting his elbow on the counter. "Funny thing was that she was totally bald, so no idea how the lass got that name." he chuckled to himself.

Suddenly the bell at the door rung again, sending the hairs on the back of Fluttershy's neck on end. She shot a quick glance over her shoulder to see a gang of five boy griffins, all wearing black leather jackets, strode in. She quickly looked back down at the counter and tried to look as small as possible. She could feel her heart rate jump slightly.

"Hello, what can I get ya lads?" Gus said, approaching the apparent leader of the quartet.

The other griffin nodded. "Yeah, you can get me and my clutch here some cider. But the good, hard stuff, not that watered down shit."

Gus nodded. "Sure thing. Anything else?"

The other griffin shrugged. "Nah." he waved his claw dismissively and walked over to one of the tables and sat down, motioning to his friends.

Gus nodded and turned to the fountain when a small bell rung, causing him to turn towards the kitchen.

"Nahrung für das Pony." Klaus grumbled, sliding out a plate of piping hot hay fries. Gus nodded.

"Thank you Klaus." Gus said, taking the plate from the window and setting down in front of Fluttershy.

"Now careful there lass, that’s hot aye?" Klaus said, turning to fill a small glass of water for her and setting it next to the plate.

Fluttershy smiled, the thought of fresh food making her forget her aching bones and tired body. She reached into her bag and fished out her bottle of painkillers, which she opened and popped out two small bright orange pills.

She popped them into her mouth and swallowed them, taking a snip of her water. She put the bottle of pills back into her backpack, zipping it shut.

Meanwhile, one of the griffins took it upon himself and walked over to a jukebox in the corner and clicked through the selection. He eventually settled on an oldie and clicked play.

A deafeningly loud series of guitar chords began to burst from the jukebox speakers and the griffin started to move to the rather brutal music and sat down with his peers.

Meanwhile, Fluttershy did her best to avoid attracting attention and quietly ate her hay fries, hoping that the griffins wouldn’t take notice of her.

Gus emerged from behind the counter with four large cider mugs in his claws, overflowing with cider. He walked over to the table where the other griffins sat and set the glasses on the table.

“Will there be anything else lads?” Gus asked.

The leader of the griffin shot him a dirty look. “Nothin’. Piss off.”

Gus simply shrugged and walked back behind the counter, seemingly not taking any offense to the other griffin. He picked up a glass and started to wipe it.

Fluttershy finished her hay fries and gently pushed the plate forward.

“Ah, done already lassie? Didja like ‘em?” Gus asked, still wiping the glass.

Fluttershy nodded. “Thank you. I hope this covers it.” She quietly pulled some bits out of her pocket and plopped them on the counter.

Before Gus had a chance to take the money, the doorbell rung, and a rather grizzled looking girl griffin walked in, wearing a black leather jacket with yellow stripes.

Gus set the glass he was cleaning down and waved at the girl griffin, who now sat at the counter a couple of chairs away from Fluttershy.

Fluttershy pulled her coat collar up and did her best to remain unnoticed. She could feel her heart rate go up slightly at the sight of the gruff looking griffin. The griffin apparently noticed her as she turned to look at her.

“Hey, wadda you lookin at, huh?” She grumbled.

Fluttershy shook her head, looking back at her reflection. “N-nothing, n-nothing at all.”

The griffin then turned back to the counter. “Fine. Keep it that way.”

Gus walked up to the griffin. “Well, lassie? What’ll it be?”

The griffin looked at Gus. “Coffee. Black. No sugar. Now.” She grumbled.

Gus nodded. “Sure thing.” He turned and set the coffee to brew.

“Here ya go lassie.” Gus said as he slid the fresh coffee in front of the mysterious griffin.

“Don’t call me that, got it?” She spat.

Gus shrugged. “Fine.”


Meanwhile, at the table of the diner, one of the griffins finally noticed Fluttershy. He was a rather thin fellow, his jacket didn’t quite fit and he constantly fidgeted.

He leaned next to the leader. “Hey, Rog, Lookie there.” He tapped the larger griffin. The leader, Roger, looked up from his cider.

“What is it Syd?” he grumbled turning to look at Syd.

“Um, well, there’s a pegasus over there.” Syd said, pointing a claw at the pegasus in the hoodie across the diner. Roger looked at the pegasus for a moment before turning back to Syd.

“And? What about it?”

Syd shrugged. “I donna know, I figured that since it’s a pony, we could maybe have a little fun? You know, rough her up or something.” He quietly took a sip of his cider, looking at another griffin. “Wadda do you think Dave?”

Another griffin, larger than Syd but smaller than Roger shrugged. “I don't know, Syd, what about that other griffin.” He pointed at the other griffin who was pouring what seemed to be alcohol into her coffee.

Syd and Roger turned to look at the other griffin. She looked rather grizzled and downing coffee and alcohol like no one’s business.

Syd’s eyes widened. “Um, wow. Didn’t think about her.”

Roger sighed, looking at Syd. “Of course you didn’t Syd.” He jabbed a claw into Syd’s forehead, making Syd yelp in pain. “You never think things through. Seriously dude, where’s your mind at?”

Syd simply shrugged, rubbing the sore spot on his forehead. “Sorry Rog, just figured we could have some fun. You know, been awhile since we had any real fun you know.”

Roger rolled his eyes returned to his cider. There was a long pause between the five griffins as they each drank their cider at their own pace.

The song ended and another record popped onto the turnstile another loud guitar chord blared from the jukebox.

“Jeez, Rick, couldn’t ya have picked some other playlist?” Roger grumbled and looked at another griffin who was sitting next to Dave.

Rick shrugged. “What can I say, I like the classics dude.”

“Yeah man. Respect them dude.” Another griffin sitting between Rick and Dave piped up.

Roger rolled his eyes. “Nobody asked you Nick, okay?”

Nick shrugged. “Well I still think you should respect them.”

Roger sighed, once again taking a shot from his cider as he scanned the diner, looking for anything to add some spice to what had been an incredibly dull evening.

His eyes eventually landed on the little Pegasus in the coat that Syd had mentioned.

Something about her seemed off. Roger couldn’t quite peg it, but she seemed to shaking or something, almost as if she was scared that the griffin sitting across from her would suddenly jump up and try to rip her head off or something.

Perfect for a good roughing up, some fun for the boys. Roger thought. Maybe Syd isn’t really such a space cadet.

The gears in his head started to turn as he looked at the girl griffin, who was now quite obviously drunk off whatever she was drinking. An idea started to form in his head.

Yeah….we’re going to have fun tonight. He thought, a barely noticeable smile tugging at the end of his beak.

“Um, Syd.” Roger said, tapping Syd on the shoulder.

“What?” Syd asked, looking up from his cider glass.

“That pegasus, there” Roger pointed to the hoodie wearing Pegasus. “That’s the pegasus you were talking about right?”

Syd turned to look and nodded. “Yeah huh. That’s the one. Why? I thought you said we’re weren’t going to rough her up.”

Dave, Rick and Nick nodded in agreement.

“Yeah Roger? What’s the give?” Nick asked, a quizzical look on his face.

Roger gave Nick a bemused look. “Boys, I never said that we wouldn’t rough her up. As Dave here pointed out,” he motioned to Dave. “There is that other griffin we have to take into account.” He waved his claw in the general direction of the girl griffin.

Dave nodded. “Yeah, but Roger, she looks pretty tough.” He pointed out, a rather concerned look on his face.

Roger nodded. “Yes, yes she does. But did you also notice my friends, that our griffin friend over there is also completely and totally wasted?”

The four other griffins looked as discreetly as possible at the girl griffin.

She sat at the bar, sloppily trying to pour her small bottle of alcohol into what seemed to be her tenth mug of coffee, all the while drunkenly singing some little ditty. Her flask however, slipped from her drunken grip and dropped straight into the coffee, causing the griffin to slur an incredibly vulgar curse word and try to fish it out.

The four griffins all turned back to Roger. “You’re absolutely sure you wanna do this?” Rick asked, raising an eyebrow.

Roger nodded. “Yes. If anything it’ll kill this awful boredom.”

The other four griffins looked at each other and shrugged. They too had been feeling terribly bored and wanted desperately to do anything to spice things up. If roughing up a pegasus in an over-sized coat was the only method, it seemed fine by them.

“So, you game?” Roger asked, already getting up from his chair. The others nodded and all stood up.

“Right. Let’s do this.” Roger said, turning and walking over to the pegasus.


Meanwhile, Fluttershy had finally begun to relax, her painkillers kicking in as the dull ache that emanated from her body faded.

The griffin next to her continued to sing whatever song it was she was singing, though, to be honest, Fluttershy couldn’t make it out, the griffin was so drunk.

“Hey.” Suddenly a male voice came from directly behind her. Fluttershy tensed up.

“Um….yes?” she whispered, feeling her heart rate begin to accelerate again. This couldn't end well.

“Well,” suddenly a rather large griffin appeared from behind her and leaned on the bar. “Me and my clutch saw ya over here and, well, we were wondering if you could, I don’t know, give us some spare bits you might have?” he was idly running his claw along the counter top.

Fluttershy began to sweat. She had just spent all her money on the hay fries, so she knew that there was no money left in her backpack.

“Um, well, I’m s-sorry t-to t-tell you, b-but I d-don’t think I h-have a-any m-money left…if that’s okay with you…” She whimpered as she noticed four more griffins step into her line of vision.

The first griffin nodded. “Oh….well…that really does suck…” he continued to run his claw along the counter top. “Really does. If more for you then for us that is.”

With those words he grabbed Fluttershy by the shoulder and flung her to the floor, laughing.

Fluttershy lifted her head from the floor to see one of the griffin, a thin fidgety fellow, rummaging through her backpack.

“Hey Rog,” he said, turning to look at the first griffin, a rather disappointed look on her face. “There’s nothing in here. Just a bunch of pills.”

The large one sighed and stuck his claws in his jacket pocket. “For shame.” He clicked his tongue. “And we were hoping for a few bits at least. Well, guess we just gotta persuade you now don’t we?” he said, looking down at Fluttershy.

Fluttershy’s pupils shrunk to pin points as she started to hyperventilate, her heart rate climbing even higher with each second.

The other griffins started to surround her, all with the same smug grin on their faces. Suddenly the girl griffin spoke up.

“Hey, guys, leave the dork alone huh? Pick on someone your own size.” she grumbled, her voice slurred by the amount of alcohol she must have consumed.

“Shut your trap drunkie.” The leader said, as he clicked his knuckles.

The girl griffin suddenly sat up, her face suddenly very serious. “What didja call me?” she said, standing up from her chair, nearly falling over however in her drunken state.

“You heard me.” The leader griffin replied.

The girl griffin cracked her neck. “Nobody calls me ‘drunkie’. Got that?”

The boy griffin turned to face her. “Look drunkie, I don’t give a damn what you think, kay? Me and my boys are going to have some fun with the pegasus here. And there ain’t nothing you can do to stop it. You get me?”

The girl griffin smiled. Fluttershy noticed that the smiled was anything but nice. “Yeah. I get ya.”

With that she let out a shriek and leaped towards the boy griffin, pinning him to the floor.

Fluttershy instantly took this as a chance to escape. She grabbed her backpack and made a flying leap behind the counter and curled into a ball, Relax, she thought as she started taking deep breaths as her heart rate went sky high. Just try and relax....

She looked to her right to see Gus the Griffin had already hit the floor and was now muttering something about repairs and this being the third time that week.

She could also hear the sounds of the fight coming from beyond the counter, with various vicious expletives coming from all involved.

Fluttershy continued to breathe in and out rapidly.

Oh no, she thought, as her hooves started to turn a shade of green around the edges. She heard an odd 'snikt' sound and the voice of the girl griffin cursing somepony out followed by a yell and cutting sounds.

Fluttershy suddenly remembered something.

"My pills!" she whispered as she reached into her backpack and pulled out a small bottle with pills in it. She fumbled with the safety lid, trying her best to keep calm in spite of the circumstances.

Finally the lid popped off and several pills spilled out onto the floor in front of her. She desperately grabbed a few and popped them into her mouth. Instantly she felt her heart rate go down and watched as her hooves returned to their normal light yellow color. She leaned back and let out a sigh of relief.

She then noticed that the sounds of fighting had stopped, the strange silence broken only by the sound of ragged breathing.

She peeked over the counter and saw that the diner was completely destroyed. Standing in the center of the diner was the girl griffin. From each claw came what looked like three long knives. The claws suddenly retracted into the griffins knuckles.

The griffin let out a long sigh, obviously exhausted. Around her where the battered and bloodied bodies of the punks from before, only now their bodies were littered with various cuts and gashes. The girl griffin then staggered over to the counter and poured herself another cup of coffee and cider. Fluttershy simply stared at the griffin.

"Th-thank you." Fluttershy said her voice barely above a whisper. The griffin gave her a funny look and shrugged. "Yeah, sure. Whatever." she took a gulp of her coffee and turned and walked out of the diner.

“Wait.” Fluttershy said, raising a hooves. The griffin stopped in the doorway.


Fluttershy swallowed, doing her best to build up some confidence. “Well, I’m wondering why you stood up for me like that.” She hid behind her mane again.

The griffin gave her quizzical look. “Would you prefer I did nothing?”

Fluttershy shook her head rapidly. “No, no, no. But I was just wondering why, that’s all. You don’t seem to care about anything else.”

The griffin sighed. “Well, I felt bad for ya, that’s all. Didn’t want them to just go around bullying ya for no good reason.”

“Well, t-thank you.” Fluttershy peeped.

The griffin shrugged. “Yeah sure whatever.” and with that she stepped out of the diner and flew away into the night sky, leaving Fluttershy alone in the destroyed diner.

Author's Note:

Chapter title from the song "The Long and Winding Road" by The Beatles.

And there we go! That was really fast.

Kinda scary actually.

I hope to have the action pick up next chapter, but you know how it is. The story has a life of it's own and all.

Anyways, reference time:

The Griffin gang who get the living snot beaten out them in the diner are all named after the members of Pink Floyd:

Roger (Roger Waters)
Syd (Syd Barrett)
Dave (David Gilmour)
Rick (Richard Wright)
Nick (Nick Mason)

And yes. That IS Gilda as Wolverine. You may go and have a nice fangasm now, thank you very much.

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