• Published 7th Apr 2013
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The misadventures of some random person turned Manticore - Cloverleaf



Well, I never expected this. A world full of mystery, danger, and.... talking ponies? Also, why am I a big cat?

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Frogs and Horses

My travels found me on a winding path, going who knows where. The forest itself seemed to be encroaching on me, whispering to me, like there was somebody there, trying to divert me from my path. Like staying on it was helping, I couldn't tell if I was going in circles or not. First off, I didn't have my compass, second of all, my foot...err, pawprints, being masked by similar ones. Guess I'm not the only big cat in the forest. Did others fall to the same fate, or was I still on some drug trip?

Course, the whole fact that there are big cats like the body I have now roaming in here was a troubling thought. There was a town near the edge that Evan and I passed through. People there had seemed nice, pointed us to the campsite. If they knew about the felines, why didn't they tell us. On that matter, why wouldn't they alert us to big bugs out there, or the fact a person can turn into one of the cats while sleeping in here? Even then, I still didn't see a sign of my brother.

Finally, the treeline let up, and I had found a pond. A scummy lake, so covered in green, I questioned if I could stand on it, and there were frogs everywhere. They kept clear luckily, guess afraid of me. I looked around at them, and for some reason my mind contemplated frog legs. I couldn't help but chuckle at the thought. My voice, even then, sounded different, grittier, almost a growl. It makes me chuckle more. Like I could fill the role of fierce predator. Course, now that my funny bone was tickled, it went the extra mile and I was laughing, falling to my side.

This caused a sharp pain to go up my side as my weight landed on, something. Yelping, and killing my mood at the same time, I rolled onto my stomach, relaxing as the pain faded rather quickly. Whatever it was, I couldn't put my full weight on it like that. Putting aside those thoughts, I got up and decided to finally get a look at what I was. splashing away some of the scum off the water, i was able to get a clear enough idea. I looked like some kind of lion, though not any normal lion. Oh, i had the fierce eyes and the flowing mane of a large male lion, but my nose seemed...more batlike in appearance, my ears too. My lower canines seemed to be poking up in huge sharp fangs. How I didn't notice that earlier I don't know. Turning sideways a bit, I looked again to see what had caused the pain. On my side was something leathery, somewhat thick, and covered on the top by the same fur my paw had been. It was a wing, a batlike wing.

I had wings.....Hot damn I had wings! I tried to focus on what muscles controlled them, and found it rather easy to flex them. This was incredible! Self powered flight was in my grasp, I could feel it, this was gonna be so much....what the heck kind of tail do I have? Something long, segmented, and almost insectoid in appearance greeted me in my reflection as it came more into view. At the end of it was a long and very dangerous looking stinger. That tore it, I wasn't just some cat, I was a cat of mythical legend, a freak of nature. That tail sealed it in my head, and reflecting on various mythology before had helped. I was a manticore. A freaking manticore!

I don't know if my mind was able to wrap my head completely around that, but in my excited state, I had at some point tried to take flight, and was immediately getting a deep drink. It took a few seconds of flailing wildly, thinking I was drowning, before my paws hit the bottom. Of course, just a short ways away from the edge, it was still the shallows. Glad nobody saw that, I waded out, and shook myself dry as best I could. The smell that I had been ignoring up to this point finally got to me and caused me to gag. Ok, needed to find high ground, find civilization, and find a shower. I was not going to spend the rest of my life smelling like this. The very thought of it was....was the ground shaking?

A quick turn back to the pond shows that bubbles are forming. Big bubbles, and a bunch of ripples over the pond. Thinking it best to avoid any kind of confrontation with whatever can make bubbles that big, I darted back into the treeline, and watched from my new hiding spot. What popped out of the water was a serpent's head, and then another, and another, and another! They snaked up into the air as they got taller and taller, until what seemed to be the big thing making the ground shake came up out too. All four of these serpents were connected to one body, and they were HUGE! All of them seemed to be looking around, trying to find something. The realization hits me like a ton of bricks. They were looking for me.

I needed to stay hidden until they gave up, or run off now before they could potentially spot me. Getting caught by one of these things, well, I was probably big enough to warrant being labeled a snack to this thing. The whole fact there is a multi headed serpent the size of a semi truck, no, bigger than a semi truck, a...I had nothing to properly compare it to! Anyway, the fact something this big, lived here!? What was that town thinking!? This beast could stomp right in and take it by storm! I needed to get out of here, but how?

That question fell to the side as one of the heads looked this way, and kept it's gaze there. I swear it was looking right at me, and I would have pissed my pants....If i was wearing any. Fairly certain I wasn't, so I just ended up standing in a warm puddle for the moment. The staredown continued for what seemed like an eternity, until finally, that head turned away...and another head looked this way. Again, a minute of crippling fear, followed by another as the third head did it, then the fourth. Good thing I couldn't piss more.

After what seemed like four eternities, the heads convened, and then, the whole thing went back into the depths of the swampy area. I waited for around what I figured was ten minutes, with nothing happening. Stepping out, with my eyes darting back and forth, I slowly make my way around the water, avoiding making any noise possible, and start climbing my way up a rocky outcropping nearby. Given there was a path up, it was easy. Can't imagine rockclimbing would be easy as I am now. The trip up takes a good twenty minutes, with a few actual rockclimbing sessions that dare not be repeated again, until finally at the top, I get a good view of the world around me. The trees spread out into a vast forest, and I kicked myself, or tried to at least, for taking myself deeper into it. I needed to find a landmark, something to get me out of here. A few mountains off in the distance, what appears to be a small renaissance style village somewhere closer. I blink and double check as my gaze falls on one mountain past this village.

No way, no way a city could hold itself up on a mountainside like that. It was impossible! 'As impossible as turning into a manticore overnight is?' My mind pushed. Ok, so my head made sense. What else could explain it, or that bug, or the serpent, thing....HYDRA! It was a hydra! Another mythological creature. Seriously, what in the world was going on? Was I on earth? Did I get sucked into some new world? No, it has to be mushrooms, or some drug, it'll wear off soon. Just have to wait...Not waiting, that hydra could wake up again, and it would have spotted me up here, and there's no ay I'd feel pain in a hallucinated limb. So, I look to climb down, when another bit of curiosity catches in my head. I obviously couldn't power flight with these wings, but...what if I tried acting like a hang glider?

A quick look around finds a suitable ledge to take off from, and convenient for me it was pointed at the village. I needed to get there, find a doctor, and hope that they can tell me what happened to me. Oh gees I hope it's not contagious. Rearing up, I unfold my wings again. That still felt weird, but give it enough time....A hop, skip, faceplant. Shaking my head, I step further back, and bound forward and leap off the edge. Keeping my wings steady i begin to fall, very slowly. It, it was working! If only I had a certain toy or two I'd be mimicking one classic of a movie scene here.

The glide itself was rather uneventful, though my inner self was simply going weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! Eventually the treetops came up to me, but I was so close to the edge of the forest it didn't matter. A few proken branches, a couple bruises, and a definite thud later, I was on the ground again. I congratulated myself for making it safely out of these crazy woods. 'Hey bonehead, what about your brother?'

Well shit, there went my mood. He had to be in there somewhere still. In the forest, with, all the fantasy creatures and the same forest that turned me into one. No, if I was going to look for him, I needed to find help first. A quick scan again, there was a cottage nearby. Looked quaint. Maybe they knew about the forest. All it took was a quick stroll and-

"Halt!"

Shit, the cops now? I look around, nobody there, so wait, did I just imagine that. A light thud in front of me tells me otherwise, followed by several others. It, was a horse, in golden armor, carrying a spear, surrounded by other horses in gold armor also carrying spears. But the kicker, the big kicker. They all looked exactly the same, from their cartoonish looking eyes, to their armor, to their spears, their pure white coats, and finally to their....wings?

Ok, really, this was getting completely absurd. Too much, and my brain told me it was going to stop trying to contemplate the situation. I went from surprised, to smiling. Smiling went to snickering, and finally i flopped down laughing my weird looking head off. I figured they'd ease up, but nope. The spears came down, fully pointed at me.

"Back in the forest monster." The one closest to me was snarling, and this just sent me into another fit of laughter. That face, it was, it was just too much. A face like that just can't look menacing. I look up at him as my laughing dies once again to snickering and the occasional giggles. And for the first time in hours, actually open up my big fat mouth to say something.

"Pfft, You guys, pegasuses, or, what is the plural for a pegasus? Doesn't matter, this, this is too much." My good mood faded when they were looking at me in mild shock, and a couple of them murmured something about it talking. Was it that odd? They could after all, so why was it so odd I could?

"Sir. Clearly it's sentient, we can't drive it from society." One of the two in the back says. Which one was he talking to, how could they tell?

"It's still a dangerous creature, and was clearly heading for the home of one of the Elements. It goes back in." The one in front. Ok, he was in charge. Again the one in the back pipes up.

"Comet, Sir, with all due respect. The sentiency law enacted last year, from Rorandun vs The State, clearly says any creature showing signs of sentiency is to be considered under the law the same as any Equestrian citizen." Equestrian? Horse puns now? Oh gees this was either one heck of a drug trip, or I've gone insane, killed my brother, and am now making a whole new world in my head. But then again, Equestrian, where have I heard that before? Again the one in charge, his name known to me now, glares.

"You have a point Sunburst. Still, Sunburst, Cutting Edge, you two will escort this manticore to Canterlot. I want him kept him check at all times. The rest of you are with me. We still need to find that changeling that flew off earlier." I resisted the urge to snicker at the name Canterlot. Again with the horse puns. Changeling stuck in my head though, like, again, I'd heard it before, Canterlot too. I brush it aside for now and try to get their attention.

"Hey, as much as I would love to go to this, Canterlot, I still need help finding my brother. He's in that forest still." Comet looks at me funny for a second, then glares.

"I'm not letting you lead my squad into a trap here. Go, before I have you put behind bars for resisting a military officer." What, the life of someone else wasn't enough to warrant him helping me. Sunburst and Cutting edge flanked me, and motioned for me to follow. The spears were pointy, I'll give them that much. I lowered my head, and went along. We passed the cottage on our way, and a butter yellow horse with a pink mane watched on. I gave her a weak smile. She looked on the verge of jumping in and doing something rash. Something about her, it tugged at me, so I looked her in the eyes and just mouthed no. I think she got it, or maybe she thought I was crazy, cause she swooped inside. Maybe she mistook it for boo, I don't know.

Our trip was short, and I was ordered into a covered carriage. Soon as the door's locked up, i look out a knothole in the wood. They were harnessing....themselves up? Ok I guess that made sense, if not a little weird and- I was shaken from my train of thought as they take off, not running, flying, and taking me with them! I looked out the back window, yes, the village we had been in for a short time was slowly fading away. I sigh and turn to see a bright pair of blue eyes in my face, surrounded by a pink coat and a mane that looked very much like cotton candy. I'll be honest, I nearly screamed like a little girl, but she put a hoof in my mouth before I could.

"Shh." She looks around real quick, then whispers. "I was gonna say hi and welcome you to Ponyville, but I'll wait till you come back to throw you a proper party. Bye!" She hopped up on my head, and I reached up to grab her, but nothing. I looked up, all over, rolled over, nothing. She was gone. My brain decided to just cut away all pretenses and just shut down. And so then I fainted.

Author's Note:

Well, honestly, this got written while waiting for the submission approval. Ah well, it turned out over twice as long as chapter one, which i'm happy for. Still asking for constructive criticism of course. Let me know where I'm messing up, please.

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