• Published 4th Apr 2013
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Foal - thelittlestpony



History can tell us many things, but what if the truth is not always one of them?

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Chapter 2: The Ceaseless Search


An excerpt from Canterlotian tome; 'The Lore of the Land'. by Frostmane the Elder;


2:14 And so it came to pass, the two sisters descended upon Equestria amidst great turmoil and strife;
2:15 The celestial bodies the Moon and the Sun looked upon the land with great sorrow;
2:16 Themselves, pitying the Kingdom of Pony’s, brought forth their avatars of divine beauty Celestia and Luna;
2:17 The Goddesses arose with mighty armies and banished the heathen element of Chaos to his granite coffin; keeping vigil over their fertile land.


The young foal did not sleep much. His tired mind was contemplating his solitude through a maelstrom of nightmarish sounds. The forest was not a pleasant place to be at night, the lack of his father by his side did nothing but heighten his senses to the darkness outside. The shack was not quiet, rattling and creaking in the wind, the prison in which he was stuck though was not the only noise he endured.
Wind rustled the leaves of the trees surrounding his temporary home and an open window allowed cold air to circulate mercilessly through the small shack. The foal did not move from his resting place beneath the table, the only movements he allowed were his flinching ears pirouetting endlessly to witness the sounds outside.
A pattering of steps nearby; a growl of an angry carnivore; the fall of rain; each preventing the sleep he craved but was unwilling to relent to alone.

Gradually his eyes became too heavy to keep open and he reluctantly acquiesced to his bodies demand for rest, and he slept.

It was not a sleep of foals dreams.


As morning drew closer and the Sun breached the horizon for another day, a solitary squirrel approached a worn shack barricaded with the tiniest of barricades. A small thin twig, one end buried under a pebble on the ground the other end nestled at the crook of a door handle above. It was not a barricade designed by Canterlotian engineers to pause an stampede of raging beast, but an improvised doorstop to prevent an infant from stumbling into danger at the dead of night.
The animal gently knocked the pebble aside with its snout...
… the stick fell.

The foal awoke to the day to the door opposite him slowly creaking open, its un-oiled hinges screeching unpleasantly. The little unicorn rose and moved to the doorway to witness the saviour who had released him from his prison...
...The squirrel glared back at him.

“Erm, hewwo?”

The squirrel tilted his head to the side looking back.

“Ermmm... Imma find daddy!”

The squirrel looked back to the foal again for a moment, then turned in the direction that he had led the foal from the evening before. The little foal followed.

It was not far to the same hill but on the way the squirrel stopped at a patch of mushrooms growing from the cadaver of a broken tree. The little pony looked at the strange fungi before him, narrowed his eyes, and patted the largest one in the patch on its cap. A brief smile escaped him as he repeated his gesture. A sound like a wet hoof slapping a flank replied causing a grin to creep across the foals tiny features.
Patpatpat
“heeehehehehee”
patpat “heeehehe.... Owwww!”
An acorn rebounded from his forehead and landed on the mushroom ahead of him stopping him in his childlike reverie in an instant. A squirrel looked up at him and shook its head and started off again to the hill the child would be certain to circumnavigate again. The foal suddenly remembered his task and followed again; 'Daddy'.

The squirrel watched from his vantage point atop the tree the little unicorns foalish endeavour, he was not moving as quickly as the previous day but his motions were certainly the same, never venturing far from the furrows surrounding the hill, not raising his head to survey the area. Stopping only to drink muddy water from the base of the ditch, and rest for fleeting moments.
The squirrel satisfied the child was to go nowhere leapt from his perch and swiftly ran between trees and brush alike heading to the borders of the forest once again. To visit the yellow and pink pony.
To bring a friend.


Fluttershy was in the middle of her morning routine. Sacks of foodstuffs weighed her down, but her face always bringing a smile to the work she committed to. Every so often she spoke to the collection of animals gathering around her waiting for their feed. Her soothing voice a paragon of harmony. But her mind was unnaturally occupied though as she went about her tasks.

Her 'friends' had been restless... Her mind was cast to the previous day when one of the woodland animals had came to her, gesturing to follow in to the woods. Her mind curious and fearful in equal measure as to the reason of the visit.

Had she neglected one of the poor animals injured children?

Was she really the caretaker of animals that they deserved?

Perhaps... but her commitment to the task at hoof was never to be questioned.

Her eyes flashed sporadically to the forest ahead. Many times she had ventured in to the woods and came back alive with stories the greatest playwright could never imagine, but her fear of the unknown was ever-present.
That she had a home so close to the forests edge was a bitter pill she would rather not swallow, but swallow it she did in her conviction to her chosen profession. Nobody had told her that in order to be kind you needed to be brave.

Feeding chores complete she turned to the front door of her cottage. One last glance to the forest edge revealed yesterdays visitor returning with a haste that only a worker late for a day on the farm could manage. Her expression now grave she turned to the squirrel and called;

“I'm sorry Mr Squirrel, I simply don't have time to come in to the woods today.”

The squirrel stopped and looked at the yellow and pink pony, raising to its hind legs in response and flicking its head to gesture back to the woods.

“Oh.. Oh, my. Maybe I can come tomorrow?”

The squirrel repeated his gesture.

Fluttershy was being torn apart inside, her precious animals were a great source of solace to her. Could she ignore them so?
She took two steps towards the forest then floundered. A few moments passed and over the hill three fillies approached.

“HELLO MISS FLUTTERSHY! WE ARE HERE TO EARN OUR ZOOKEEPING CUTIE MARKS!”

Fluttershy's head spun to the three fillies bounding down the hill.

“Oh my, I almost forgot!”

The appearance of the Cutie Mark Crusaders was a welcome distraction. How could she be kind if she broke promises! She could not go in to the forest today when three needy fillies were in such need of her kindness!

“Of course girls!, this way”

Fluttershy turned back to the door of her cottage with the trio of trouble in tow and held open the door to let them inside.
Stopping for a moment she watched the squirrel returning to the forest which he came from.

Surely it can wait until tomorrow?.


The foals venture in the woods in search of his father was continuing in earnest. The furrow he was traversing was surely the route to his destination. His foalish mind continued its ever present meander through his fathers words to him on that fateful night but drawing little conclusion replaying the words he was privy to.

'This... thing is the reason she is not here'

Exhaustion was creeping up on him now, his regular pauses becoming more frequent and greater in length, ten metres was now a merciless mile in the deepest desert. His saddle bags wore into his skin, but reminded of words his father had said he refused to remove them.

A squirrel returned to keep his vigil over the young ponies endeavour, perching itself upon the branch of the tree atop a hill. Ever silent, but unwavering in the labour he assigned to himself. Celestias sun was high in the sky and there would be hours to go until nightfall.

The foal stopped and took in his surroundings, tiny hoof marks ahead and behind, much too small for his father to have made. A frown painted his face as he looked to the tree at the centre of the hill with a squirrel nestling easily.

“hewwo mister”

The squirrel did not respond, but turned to the child with a quizzical face.

“umm, I dont know where daddy”

The foal dropped to his haunches and brought his hoof to his sweating face, dragging fetlock over his fore head he sat waiting for a response which would never come.

“why daddy mommy not want me?!”

The foals violet eyes shimmered in the noon sun close to tears. Infantile mind unable or unwilling to admit to the fate before him; he raised a hoof, and placed it on the horn protruding from his forehead and tapped three times.

“DADDY!.

.. MOMMY!”

Silence.....


As darkness fell a squirrel waited by the wayside of the little foals path. The little unicorn approached his guardian increasingly slowly, exhausted from his days walk.
Upon seeing the little creature the foal made no sound, simply looking at the woodland inhabitant and focusing his movements in its direction.
The journey they took was not so short now, drained from his endless circling of the hill the foal had little left to give, and every step was a mammoth undertaking. Relentless though the squirrel lead back to the shack from the previous night.

As the foal finally reached the shack he walked apprehensively to the doorway, the squirrel had moved to the windowsill already but neither seemed willing to make another move.
A step forward by the foal, and the squirrel was gone.
“eeEEEP”
The foal was bashed on his flank by a jumping rodent causing him to jump into the shack ahead.

Turning once more the foal saw a squirrel looking back at him...

Before the the door closed...

With no heart left to attempt to open the door the infant moved to the corner of the shack underneath the table he had slept the evening before.
The only light refracted from the axe above him

Alone,
Still.