To whom it may concern, I leave the story of my life: the story of Retribution-Lord Anninnicus Ravenfury, Captain of the Army of Retribution, and survivor of the Great War. I should first start by saying I wasn't even born as a gryphon...
( yep this entire slop is getting a re write of a few earlier chapters )
Hello. My name is Anninnicus. Anninnicus Ravenfury... It's a name I came up with on my own, truthfully... My real name is... Chirp.. And that name was given to me by, well... everypony.
It started with my adoptive mother, Lovely Lights. And I suppose my name change never went through, and I also suppose I'm far too lazy to do it again.
It's totally contradictory thinking, yes, bad name, want to change it... and too lazy to change it. That's just how I function. I'm perfectly fine with it, even if I have to cringe every time someone tries to use "Chirp" to refer to me.
I can expect you all are here to hear all the stories of the War, and my... 'excursions' following it's end.
However, I'd rather talk about the most joyful years of my life, as it was only after the war ended that I became even remotely relevant in this world.
I'd much rather talk about my life... before the war...
If you really want to hear stories of the war, I'd recommend you to... well.... I don't know if she'd want to talk about it either. I'll send you her way afterwards, if you stick around long enough.
(Random and comedy tags for.... just trust me on it.
Alternate universe tag will come up much later, but it's due to the fact I've merged it with another series I'm planning on making.... At some point. As it stands, I'm not using the official Mlp map, so that's the tag at work for now.
I leave my story to any and all who would indulge it. Be you human or pony, Terran or Equestrian, if you are reading this now, then it is to you I write.
My story here, in Equestria, began on this same very mountain I was resting on now. Albeit at a different point of the mountain, and I could see my home town of Buckston from this vantage point, a little roost I was slightly surprised to have found to still be there, and unoccupied. Flying certainly had it's advantages when it came to traveling, as Buckston was a bit isolated from the rest of Equestria, as there were no trains leading to the town, and it wasn't a particular place of interest, other than being the most northwestern settlement in Equestria.
No, I wasn't born on a mountain, if that's what you were wondering. I sort of....... wound up here... after a bike accident on my home world. Don't ask, I have no idea how I am here, in a world I thought was fictional. Just 'Blam!'. Dropped off in the middle of nowhere in a seamless transition from then to there. I was placed in the body of a child, and found by a nice unicorn named Lovely Lights who totally took me in like a pet and gave me a name befitting of one kindly adopted me, fed me, sent me to school, and supervised my upbringing in this world. I made friends and rivals, who I can remember to this day.
Speaking of those friends and rivals, I think I might have been the only one to ever leave Buckston, among my childhood acquaintances. Well, there was Sunny Skies, of course, who had a few months in the Wonderbolt Academy near Cloudsdale, but just when she was about to graduate, and be placed on the reserves, she admitted she only wanted to impress her mother, White Thunder, who retired from the Wonderbolts three years prior to her daughter applying to the academy. Sunny Skies had decided she'd rather stay at home and work on the weather team. Leaving me as still the only one from my generation to leave Buckston, and to not come back to live there again.
Well, about that... maybe I was getting a little home sick, which is why I was here now. Back after seven years, though only for a brief visit. I'd decided it was here I'd renew my hunting license for the year, and it was a perfect opportunity to update on my old acquaintances.
Oh, yeah, hunting license. I should mention before the confusion overload hits, that I'm not a Pegasus. Guess what? I'm a gryphon. You know, the other sentient flying species in Equestria? No, not dragons. Actually, to be fair, I'm not sure there's anything preventing a Pegasi from getting a hunting license, so yes, forgive me for that, but it's just that I haven't seen any Pegasi hunters in all my days. Not that I've lived for many days, since I was only 21, legally.
Yes, you heard me right, twenty one. Yes, Coming back after seven years. Yes, that means I left at the age of fourteen. Turns out Equestria is far different from Earth in terms of legal ages and stuff like that, you see ( On Earth, I'd be just old enough now to be allowed to leave...) If you can prove you can handle yourself in the world, it really doesn't matter how old you are. There's no high school system, either. You go to school, finish school, usually have an idea of what you want to do based on your cutie mark talent, and pursue it the moment your parents give you their consent to do so, or when you turn 18, at which point they no longer have the legal right to hold you back from leaving. To put it plainly, I was hardly the youngest... person, that is, to leave and 'join the workforce', so to speak.
I was a gryphon, however, and didn't have any special talents to consider. I'd decided to take up hunting and skinning pelts as my profession, along with a few temporary jobs. Believe it or not, some ponies use animal leather as coverings for couches, bags, and clothing. Ponies might be herbivores (for the most part, someone please explain cakes and cookies to me, and those eggs you have to add to the mix to make them.), but in Equestria, it's all a matter of being sentient, really. Some of them actually eat meat on certain occasions. But don't tell them I said that. They might get offended, oh no.[/] Christ. Can't even speak two words about omnivorous ponies without somepony calling them savages or something similar. Meanwhile, the gryphon currently eating some rabbit in front of them is perfectly fine ( well, I mean... if you define 'not illegal' as perfectly fine, but that's where the line stops).
Speaking of gryphons, we were a pretty diverse species as a whole. It's not as simple as being half eagle and half lion, like how it is in mythology. In Equestria, 'gryphon' extended to a vast wealth of hybrids between cats and birds. Not all of us looked quite the same, aside from body shape. I've seen Owl-leopards, hawk-tigers (do not ask me what the visual difference is between a hawk gryphon or an eagle gryphon is, the guy had the body and markings of a tiger, and the word 'hawk' in his name, so take that as you will) , and heard all sorts of other combinations. You know, as if the world wasn't insane enough?
Anyways, I've gone on long enough of a tangent already. I sat and stared for a good long while at the town, observing it from a distance, far from the sight of any pony there. "Well, it's now or never." I said, though to no one in particular. I stretched out my black wings, preparing my descent into the town.
Soaring past the forest that stood between the mountain range and the town, I came upon the home the housed me long ago. The home of the pony who cared for me as a child. Lovely Lights. She was a.... well, a designer. Of lights. Lovely lights. Simple enough, right? I still don't understand the reason behind naming yourself after your special "cutie mark talent".
But, you know what? I don't have to understand it. Not a pony, after all.
I made the decision not to visit just yet, though I did land in the town, to give my wings a rest from the flight, and stretch my legs, which had been subjected to minimal use over the last two days.
Looking around the town as I walked, I noticed that, in addition to not much having changed in the landscape of Buckston, that not many ponies seemed to recognize me at all.
Likely due in part that I was much very clearly not the only gryphon in the town anymore... I wouldn't say there were a lot of us, but compared to most towns I've been to ever..... They were... everywhere.
And I couldn't help but feel a sense of dread in me, for some reason...
"Greetings to you, child of the North. " Something sounded behind me, causing me to flinch.
Turning around, I was staring down at a vermilion-grey unicorn, in a black robe that hid most of his body and cutie mark.
"Do I happen to know you?" I responded, not knowing who this was, or why he would say something like that to me.
"Perhaps. Blinking Dagger is the name. I assume you are here with the rest of these gryphons." He told me, as if stating I was.
"No," I told him, causing him to raise an eyebrow. " I am here to visit family. Ravenfury. Anninicus Ravenfury. " I replied, though I was wary of his name. I mean, Who was this guy? There weren't particularly a lot of profession there to warrant a name such as his. He certainly didn't dress like a guard, and the other alternatives were hardly good.
Speaking of guards... I didn't see any. Not that Buckston had many guards, but understandably, I was certainly on the eye out for one right about now.
"I understand. I do, however, wish you luck, Ravenfury." Blinking Dagger noted, before turning and leaving, without another word.
"That... wasn't something you see everyday..." I muttered, before shaking my head. "All right, Ravenfury, you're wasting time here." I scolded myself, before heading on my way towards the town hall, all the while keeping a lookout for somepony to report that unicorn to.
I never did find anypony, though....
And it wasn't very long that I discovered I was right to be worried.
I woke up from my after-work nap, packing my things for my evening hike up the scenic mountain. It was always lovely to watch the sunset and moonrise from the side. Of course, there was a reason that I was the producer of the bestselling sun and moon shaped lights over all of Equestria. Always went out to admire the setting of Celestia's sun, and rising of Luna's moon. Haven't missed a day for the past seven years, and that's something, I was barely 25 years old!
I entered my kitchen, grabbing a few canisters of water using my magic, and I strapped on my hiking boots. Was a serious pain without them, I can say from experience. I also grabbed my alarm clock, a bedroll, some food ( a few oats here and there, and a nice daffodil sandwich for breakfast), and a pillow, because I had special plans tonight. I was going to sleep on the mountainside. I wanted to catch the opposite of my daily routine this time. Besides, what kind of pony doesn't want to go on a mini camping trip every once in a while?
I'd have to get up real early however, and the faster I got to the mountain side, the more time I'd have to sleep. I do admit, I had to go to work tomorrow as well, but when I have a plan, I go through with it! So I'd have to get home quickly to prepare for the day. But it was all okay, I had a hobby to do, and I was dedicated to it. I hadn't been late to work in the past seven years.... Okay maybe a few times, but it wasn't too serious.
I looked at the time, and I still had a good three and a half hours till sunset. I looked at the food I had packed, and... It was pretty pitiful, really. I only ever had enough food in the house to last a few days, what with the vegetable garden I had outside.... another one of my hobbies. So my food situation in terms of traveling was poor at best...
Picking up a bag full of bits, and leaving my things, I decided to head over to the local grocery store. A little bag of oats and a sandwich wasn't proper nutrition for camping. In fact, the sandwich would probably go bad overnight. So I stuck it in the refrigerator, deciding it would make a decent breakfast or lunch, and left.
***An hour and a half later***
I left the store with well... a big bag of oats, enough to get me through much more than just my little overnight. I decided that, since oats don't go bad (For a long time at least), and that I'd probably make another, maybe longer trip at some point, I might as well get a stockpile of them. I also got some hay, figuring that, hey, hay doesn't go bad either so.... Oh dear, what a poor choice of words....
I did get some more bread and apples(from Sweet Apple Acres, no less!) though, so... I guess I needed to go to the store soon anyways. I mean, I had some extra bits, and I didn't really spend my money on a lot of things. After taxes, there's really just the water bill, the electric bill, and I tend to have money just piling up. My garden was well maintained, so I just gathered the seeds when ready, and replanted them. So yeah... Extra money that I didn't need, might as well buy some surplus. Actually, I probably did buy too much, because it looked like I could live on oats and hay for the next month.... Oh well, it's good to have a fall back plan in case your garden fails or something. I even bought a container of sleeping pills, for those hard nights.
I also bought a coconut. What? I have cravings some of the time! Everypony gets them at some point.... I think....
Returning home, I quickly packed up my things, and packed some of the oats and hay I'd just bought, as well as a few apples. Was going to take me at least an hour to get to the spot I always chose, and sunrise was in two hours, so I had to be quick if I wanted to have enough time to unpack my things at the site.
I bit into an apple, for now, as I hastily double checked for all my supplies, and left the house. Huh... You know what I forgot to buy? A tent, but that store was 40 minutes away from my home, and I wouldn't have had time to get to the mountain before sunset. Get a tent...Add that to the to-do list when I get back... Living on the edge was rough. Living on the edge of town, I mean... My life was pretty normal.
Though it did mean I was already pretty close to the little forest path that led up to and through the mountain, and I wouldn't have had it any other way. I was probably the only pony in town who knew the woods like the back of his or her hoof, and it meant I could always sleep in a bit before I ended up taking my little hikes.
A few minutes later, I found myself trotting in the little forest, the Horseshoe Mountain Woods. It stretched for barely a mile long, really, and you could easily and clearly see the mountain trail that the forest led to from the other side. It certainly wasn't as big as the Everfree Forest way down south, but It made up for that, given how winding the path was. Nopony really ever made an effort to straighten the path. The forest wasn't dangerous or anything, minus maybe a few bee hives in the area, and the occasional timberwolves, but the latter was few in number, and the former was perfectly fine with you passing through, so long as you didn't bother them.
It's important to note that ponies generally run faster than timberwolves can, and they also didn't tend to venture out of the forest, on either side, so it was pretty easy to get away from them. I was also prepared with a few minor, easy offensive spells, but in all these years, I never had to actually use them. The timberwolves weren't really too dangerous, there was maybe a single pack of them in the entire forest.
Beyond those, the forest was populated with little animals, which was pretty normal, I suppose. Squirrels, rabbits, mice, and birds, Nothing really too interesting.
Thirty minutes or so later, I was at the final trek of the forest path, and from here on, It was just a straight journey to the end of the forest, where the little road continued. I drank some of the water I carried, and looked ahead, seeing the end of the trail and the mountain beyond.
But something else caught my eye. I saw a little shape skittering forth, towards the forest. It was too small to be anything in particular, not even a timberwolf pup, but it was much too large to be a mouse or rabbit. I stepped into a nearby bush, and continued forward, a little wary, but it was quite apparent that it had already noticed me, as it was frantically looking around, up, left, and right. Then it.... covered its head and went low to the ground, motionless?
And that's what I found strange. If it was an animal, it would've darted off, scared. If it was a predator, It would've dove into the bushes or something, and tried stalking me. At the very least it would've stayed in the trail, standing, while I trotted forward...
I emerged from the bushes, getting closer, keeping my guard up, until I noticed exactly what it was. It was, what seemed to be, a very young, black gryphon. It was barely a year old, I'd dare say.
But that was even stranger. I knew for a fact that there were no gryphons in Buckston, the town that I lived in, and while I knew that there were such things as wild gryphons, not only had I never seen any in the forest (Which again, I came here every single night. I would know if there were any at all), but if the stories I'd heard were true, young wild gryphons were invariably never found without their parents, or at least their mother.
So why was one here now? I looked around frantically, scared that I would be pounced upon by an angry mother. But there was nothing around to account for such a thing. The child was alone, with no family.
I approached the young gryphon, who was still clutching its head, as if it was waiting for a death blow.
"Are you alright, little one ? What's wrong? And what are you doing here?" I asked softly, taking care not to appear threatening.
The gryphon looked up at me, eyes wide with fear, though it didn't seem to understand my words, which hinted that it might not know Equestrian at all. Which, while it was young, was also strange.
It only looked at me, and cawed weakly, though I did notice a slight change in it's expression while doing so.
I looked around one last time, to confirm if there were any parents nearby.
"Hello? Anypony.... Anybody there? I..." I called out, uncertain, and waited for a few moments... No answer came.
So I did only what any sane pony would do. I lifted the young gryphon with my magic (as well as confirmed his gender), and placed the child on my back, and turned home.
I wasn't going to watch the sunset tonight. No, this was far more important.
Let me explain. I get hit by a car, and suddenly, I'm not a human any more, and I get aged down 19 years. You've got to be kidding me.
Well, I snapped out of my terror quite easily, and I was more or less, just concerned. Wait, I'm not out of the gutter yet, what if she's really going to take me somewhere and kill me, or do other horrible things?
Get yourself together man, it's a fucking horse, my brain told me. You really think the devil is sending a horseto collect you and bring you to Hell?
So now that I thought about it, I decided that it was stupid. Can't blame me though, I watched all the Final Destination films, and watched a let's play of Until Dawn, courtesy of Markiplier. I get paranoid when things go seriously wrong. And right now, things were going seriously wrong! So anything, in my point of view, was possible. That includes the type of Hell that disguises itself as Heaven, and just when you think you've got everything you could ever ask for, Wham! Fire! Wham! You're engulfed in burning acid! Wham! You fall through a hole that opens up in the ground, and you fall, and fall, and fall, forever and ever and ever! Wham... Okay, I should stop.
Still though, I bet that someones Hell out there is they arrive at the gates of heaven, they enter the hall of eternal fortune, and the freaking devil is sitting in God's seat, the ground opens up, and fire spews out the floor, burning them for all eternity! On the other hand, no one deserves to be tricked like that. Except maybe Hitler. It would be pretty fitting for him to believe he's gone to heaven for his actions, and then he gets the old switcheroo. Actually, no, that's pretty mean. Even for Hitler.
Anyways... Yeah, I was pretty stupid to think this white, multi-coloured unicorn was my harbinger of eternal torture. Or was I? Shut up brain, I'm not going to be tortured to undeath. At least, not by a damn horse.
Well, the Shengeki no Kyojin( that is, translated literally, advancing giants) pony picked me up in some sort of levitation magic, and placed me on its back. I was pretty surprised that I was being picked up like that though, you'd think that kind of thing would be something only........
Wait. I get hit by a car, get turned into a kid of a quadruped species, get dropped off in the middle of no where, practically near a forest, and I get found by a talking unicorn, and I get picked up by said unicorn.... With levitation magic? Not only that, but... I paused to bite my shoulder with my beak(you know, for science!). Ouch..... Not only that, but it's clearly not a dream?
I better still be a boy... But, besides that, there was only one explanation. Or I could be totally wrong, but this seemed like, 90% likely: I died, and for some reason, I got sent to Equestria, and now I'm going to live my life as a My Little Pony character.
Or maybe I was originally a gryphon, and I had a dream that felt like 19 years long, and I lived a real, unphased lifespan in the time it took for a night to pass. Highly unlikely, because I'm sure dreams have a limited amount of time dilation. Those were 19 full years. 365 days each. I'm also sure I'd have a parent nearby if that was the case.
Anyways, My Little freaking Pony. My favorite tv show. Well. Remarkable. But I didn't even get to be one of my OCs... Darn it. I bet I'm in the body of some other guys OC, and I stole his spot, and he's going to get one of mine. Oh that's going to be so un-fucking fair, half my OCs are just short of Mary Sues. And I get reborn as a little gryphon with, so far, no special abilities that I know of.
Actually, I pity the fool who gets stuck with Nixran. Sure, he's half freaking dragon, but I don't think that's worth being (explicitly, I made the story!) born a 5 months walk away from the nearest Equestrian town.
And Little Cloud.... Gets driven from his home, forcefully, non stop( and I absolutely mean no stopping at all, no sleep, no rest.) for a week straight. And since he's a changeling whoever becomes him has to learn on his own, how to shift forms. Or starve to death.... And his entire lifeline kind of depends on running for another week and getting to Ponyville ( or I'd be completely lost, and I'd be unable to rely on his backstory.)
With most of the others, ponies would immediatly figure out they're dealing with the wrong pony from the slightest change in attitude for personality..... Yeah...
Okay, I'm glad I'm not any of my OCs. That would be a death sentence....
So I'm a little gryphon, riding on a ponies back, to... Ponyville? I don't remember the Everfree Forest having a mountain near it in the show, or having a trail. Come to think of it, I hadn't seen the unicorn I was on in the show either. But I was definitely in Equestria, so where was I?
The unicorn kept walking away from the direction I came from. At least I was going in the right direction, before the unicorn came. I looked down, confirming I was still a male. What? I read these kinds of fanfics, and I know for a fact, that the chance of you keeping your gender when you are transformed into a pony(or gryphon, in my case) and sent to Equestria is only 80-90%. Which is low, especially if we are talking about gender, for crying out loud. I definitely wouldn't want to be a girl... However intriguing it would be.....
Nnnnng, I'm a guy, I shouldn't be thinking about that. No, wait, for all terms and purposes, I'm a kid, I shouldn't be thinking about that! Oh lord, the sheer amount of foalcon I'd be headed for if I turned female. I'd totally be grinding this unicorn already.
I still couldn't believe it, really. It just wasn't possible. I'd found a baby gryphon in the middle of the road on which I'd travelled through every night. There simply weren't any gryphons in the surrounding area, I know for a fact! Yet here I was, bringing one home with me... How'd he ever even get out to this location?
I made it home easily enough, and set the child down, lying on the little sofa I had. And I began thinking about the implications of what I was doing.
Would I be accused of kidnapping? What if his parents simply told him to stay where he was until they got back, possibly in pursuit of prey? I asked myself. No. No parent would leave a child unattended like that... As for the kidnapping part.... I didn't know. What do you do when you find a baby in the woods with no parents nearby?
I then realized my most fatal error. Parent. I didn't know the first thing about taking care of a child, let alone one of a different species! I suppose I could take him to an orphanage, but..... Would they know how to take care of one? There weren't any gryphons in Buckston, so the chances that the orphanage would be able to care for a gryphon were slim at best... I mean, I didn't know how orphanages worked, I'd never been in one. Would he even ever be adopted? And how would he be treated there? Gryphons didn't exactly tend to be the most friendly-looking of things.
And if the stories I'd heard were true... He might not be a herbivore.... I remembered. From what I'd been exposed to, what a gryphon can and couldn't eat was all pretty randomized. Some could eat fruit and meat, but not plants. Some ate plants and fruit, but not meat. Some ate nuts and fruit, and meat.... And some ate only meat.... By Celestia, I was dealing with a roulette wheel when it came to feeding him! I'd have to, quite blatantly put, 'figure it out', something that kind of... Sent chills up my spine. How would I know? I suppose he'd spit it out, or throw up, but... Everypony had different taste buds. He was a child, and might spit something out just because he didn't like the taste. I was making a gamble I couldn't win....
But I didn't know anypony else who'd be experienced enough, or with enough free time to take care of the gryphon. So it was a gamble I was going to play. I looked over to him, and.. He wasn't there. Rather, he was at my side, looking at me.
"What is it, little one?" I asked, though I already knew he couldn't understand me. I suppose I'd have to teach him to talk, or get somepony who could. And If that was the case, I suppose I couldn't keep calling him 'the gryphon' or 'little one'. I'd have to give him a name.
He only tilted his head to the side and chirped. Hmmm... I didn't know how to name a gryphon. I didn't know their naming customs, and it would be just strange to give him a pony name. I could name him in the style a pet would be named, but that would be degrading... Well... I could have it changed later, maybe... I suppose.... So, for the meantime, I named him after the little sound he made. Chirp.
And at that, as if just waiting for the right moment, I heard a stomach rumble. And it wasn't mine.
Well, time to play that roulette. I told myself, before looking around to see what... Chirp.. Could eat... Oats were too hard to chew, and bread... I don't know. I had a few apples, but I was afraid he'd choke on something like that. I had some hay, but I was sure he wouldn't like that. Well, I could give it a try, I guessed. There was also my vegetable garden.
So I grabbed some of the hay I'd stored, and lifted it up to Chirps nose... Which, while he did lick up one of the straws tentatively, he... Blew the rest of it into my face.
"What a little trickster, you are." I said, laughing. Well it was clear he didn't want the hay, though he did, for some reason,n keep a straw of it in his mouth. But he wasn't chewing or swallowing it, and when I made a move to get it out, he turned away.
So maybe he likes hay... But not for eating... I noted to myself. Made me able to get two apples on one stem. Could get food for myself, as well as... A toy?... In one package. Huh. Well, I moved on to the vegetable garden, and I plucked a few small cherry tomatoes off the vine. They were small enough to eat, or swallow for him, so I decided that I'd give some to him.
He didn't seem happy with the offer, however, by the angry look in his eyes that I swear was directed at me... Nonetheless he bit at one of the tomatoes, and... Promptly started gagging and spitting it out. I guess he didn't like tomatoes either....
I moved on to the raspberries, blueberries, and rhubarb plants, of which while Chirp liked the raspberries and blueberries, the other... Not so much. Spit them right out. I guess he kinda liked fruits? Though he definitely couldn't live on the blueberries and raspberries, especially at such an early age. I suppose maybe nuts? Or... Maybe meat? I'd have to see...
It was at this point I noticed him sniffing the ground, as if inspecting something.... And.....
Ew.... Chirp just ate a worm! Well... I suppose he was part bird....
I was happy to have finally reached the end of the forest, and well... I was definitely nowhere near Ponyville. No Fluttershy's cottage, no Twilight's Castle, and certainly no Canterlot in the distance. In other words, I was absolutely lost in terms of location.
The unicorn came to a stop at a house that was practically the first one we ran into, and opened the door. And well, it was as I'd expected a home to look like. It had lighting, a kitchen, a refrigerator, a little sofa, stairs to a second floor, bags of oats and bags of hay....okay maybe those last two were for ponies only.
She set me down on the carpet mat and lay down on the couch, and began staring off into space, as if she was thinking about something.
Huh, guess feet are allowed on the couch, I decided, before jumping up onto the couch, flexing my talons and paws and 'getting a feel' for the sofa, which turned out to be quite comfortable. Meanwhile, I padded over to the little unicorn, kinda well.... Inspecting her, really. I hadn't seen her in the show, so I wanted to look. She had a hanging lamp for a cutie mark, and she actually seemed quite young.
Huh... how old is she? I wondered. She seemed in a word, pretty. With cute little freckles on her face. Couldn't be that old.
And that's when she turned her head to where I previously was, before looking to me. Snake, your cover's blown, get outta there!
"(What is it, little one?) she asked softly, in that same language that I didn't get earlier.
"Hmm?" I tried to sound out, but instead of the 'hmm' sound, I let out a shrill collection of noises that I could only describe as some sort of short bird call. Oops.
She didn't seem to be phased by my unexpected outburst (at least to me. That was freaky!) Instead, she zoned out again. Jeez, what was she thinking about?
And at that moment, I heard, and felt, a rumbling. My stomach. Oh lord, I didn't even know it could do that! Well the unicorn must of heard me, as she snapped out of her little phase, and got up and went towards the kitchen, looking around quizzically.
Oh right... Damn, I was a gryphon. She wouldn't know how to feed me. I'm sure somewhere along the lines that eagle-Lion had paired with some sort of herbivore, right? I mean, Gilda ate an apple in the show, so I guess I was an omnivore, right? Then again, I hated that part about the show. There's no way any combination of a bird of prey and a lion would be able to process that type of food. The only headcanon I ever came up for that was that griffons didn't have to be a cross between an eagle and a lion in the Poniverse, just a cross between any feline and any bird. Though that headcanon is shattered with the fact Gilda's clearly eagle on the bird side, and lion on the feline side ( they even addressed it as so in the show), so.... Yeah. I don't know how that works. But chances were that life was still going to be a bit of a living hell anyways.
How would ponies even treat a predator such as me? I wondered, so... I mean, I'm a child now, they'll understand, sure. But when I'm older? Would they expect me to find some other way to eat? Will I have to hunt in secret just to get proper nutrition enough to live? Wow, that would be a pain, with my white beak and claws. At least my main body was pretty black. Being white would suck so badly... Wow, the racist undertones....But back to the seriousness of all this. What would I be expected to do when I was older? Would ponies call the guards because they witnessed me killing little creatures? And even if it was permitted, there's surely some ponies out there that would persecute me so hard for killing animals. Now I'm glad I'm not in Ponyville.... Actually, remind me never to go there, at this point. I'd rather not face the Staremaster.
Well, the unicorn came back with some hay, as if she expected me to eat some. Well, it was time to test out these new tastebuds, so I sniffed it a little, before pulling one of the straws into my mouth... It tasted like... Hay. Though the taste was a even blander than I thought it would be ( it's hay, so... That's already beyond bland. Now picture it even blander than that.) . So... That was a nope. I still didn't appreciate hay. Yes, I tasted it when I was a human. It tasted like hay.
The unicorn just kept holding the pile in my face, probably waiting for an answer from me or something. Well I decided to let her stop waiting, and did the single most jerkwad thing I could do at that moment. I blew the rest of the hay into her face.
Though there was one thing that the single piece of hay still in my mouth reminded me of.
Hey, look, I'm Jet now! I silently claimed to no one in particular. What? That was my favorite show when I was a kid. And I wasn't letting her take the piece of hay, which she inevitably tried to do. Nope, my chewing twig, not yours!
Well she herded me outside the house, where I noticed it was getting darker, and she led me to the little garden she had out there. Oh goodie, more taste tests. I spit out the piece of hay, and the unicorn plucked some plants off a vine, and the plants oddly enough... Looked like... Tomatoes... Oh god... I hated tomatoes( And I let her know that, by giving as much of a death stare as I could with my big ol' eyes) , especially if they were alone, and not in a salad. Too juicy and weird tasting to eat straight. I mean, grapes tasted good, so the juiciness was actually nice... But tomatoes.... Eww. Just weird.
Well... Again, different taste buds, so I might as well taste it, so I bit one.
Let me tell you now, it tasted like a tomato. Only weirder... And it felt even juicier than a tomato of that size should. Oh my god. Like biting into a little balloon, filled with 90% water, and 10% ketchup..
Needless to say, I spit it out in the first second it exploded in my mouth. And I had to get that damned taste out of my throat, so I started gagging.
Well... Next she presented me what looked like raspberries and blueberries. Okay, I liked those. I mean, in my old life, at least. So I bit into them, and well... They also tasted juicier and more watery than fruits of their size. Like, mostly water, then the actual taste of the fruit. I'm sensing a pattern here... Well, tomatoes weren't fruits, but the general makeup of it was the same. Filled with wet insides, and a solid outside...
Any ways, I could live with the blueberries and raspberries, though not on them alone of course. The unicorn then moved onto some weird stalk plant that she pulled out the ground, taking some of the ground with it. I can only really describe it as some sort of lettuce-celery hybrid, and when she gave some to me... Same problem with the hay, it tasted pretty bland... Only this one tasted more like celery than anything, but blander... I'm using that word way too much, aren't i? I hate celery without ranch... So I spit it out. Nope. I mean did it taste edible? Not exactly, but I'd hit on it if I was absurdly hungry. I'm a spoiled little brat.
She seemed done with the things she had in the garden, I guess, even though I noticed a few other things. I guess she had enough information? Dunno.
But I wasn't done. I noticed something squiggling on the ground where she pulled the Lettuce-Celery thing from. A worm. It was also at that point I realized my vision was way better than I used to have, probably those eagle eyes at work.
I dashed upon it, and.. Left it up to my mind to start thinking.
I was half-bird wasn't I? And birds eat worms. Hmmmm.... What I was thinking of doing was beyond stupid, but I was curious. And nothing could taste worse than those tomatoes. I mean... Oh god, I'm trying to rationalize eating a worm.
Well, here goes nothing, I decided, and dove to eat the worm that was far too slow to escape my killer beak. Surprisingly, it tasted... Not bad. Maybe sweet, even. Ew.... The hell I just do? Apparently the unicorn was thinking the same, with the look of disgust that was on her face.
Well, it tasted better than those tomatoes, and no one can call me out on how wrong that is. It's not like i was going to degrade myself to the point of eating just worms. That's where I'll draw the line. I'm sure I'd wise up eventually to the fact that I was eating worms, and it wouldn't taste good after a while....
Anyways, we both went inside, and the unicorn gave me some tablet thing. Maybe an antibiotic, because I just ate a worm... And then she went upstairs, probably to the bedroom, as it was getting even darker outside now.
*** twenty minutes later...***
"Fuck....She gave me a sleep pill, didn't she?" I asked myself, felling a little more than just relaxed, eyes half-closed, and laying on the couch.
I gave Chirp half of one of the sleeping pills I'd bought, since he seemed to still be wide awake. I went upstairs, to my room, though leaving the door open, just in case he got hurt or something, So I'd be able to hear him. I looked around my room, seeing if there was some space I could reserve for a crib or a small extra bed. I'd need one eventually, if I was going to take care of him.
Tomorrow, I'd try to get to the store and buy some nuts, and see if he could eat those. If not.. I suppose the grocery store did have ( albeit a very limited supply of) meat, so he wouldn't be living on just berries... I mean, hopefully, if the nuts worked out, I wouldn't have had to buy meat.
Though he wouldn't really have much of a dinner tonight, I'd get up first thing in the morning to go to the grocery store, maybe take Chirp with me so I could show my boss why I probably wouldn't be making it to work for the next week, at least, until I could hire a foalsitter. And before that, I'd have to teach him at least his name and my name, just to start on teaching him Equestrian. I'd try to get him a tutor, I suppose. I'd look in town for one. Preferably a Pegasi, so he could learn to fly at some point.
And with that I finally went to bed, my plans for the next day laid out.
__________***The following morning***_________-
The alarm clock rang loud, and, however groggy I was, I quickly turned it off, and got cleaned up. Exiting my room, and making my way downstairs, I noticed little Chirp was still asleep... Shouldn't wake him, I guessed. I'd get the meat, and make my way back home before he woke up, as he'd no doubt be hungry waking up. He hadn't eaten the night before, so hopefully, I could get enough to satisfy him for the day at least.
I filled my bag up with bits again, and it looked like I was really going to need the extra money I'd saved up. I was glad I didn't have much to spend on. The garden really cut down on costs of food, and I was going to need all that it saved. Not that I was poor, as I had a pretty good income from what the lights I produced were selling. The garden simply helped, since it meant didn't have to go to the market so much.
I sneaked my way out of the door, and shut it quietly, praying to Celestia that he'd stay asleep, at least until I got back( actually, I was sure that he'd be able to smell the meat once I did come back, so that was all I needed.)
30 minutes later, I found myself at the grocery store again, and it was still pretty early, so not many ponies were out yet, so the store was practically empty, except for me, a few clerks, and the butcher who was there, which made what I was about to do... A little less uncomfortable.
"I'd... Like..." I began, my blushing easily visible on my white coat... I didn't even know how this sort of thing worked... "To buy raw meat.." I finished quickly.
"Shor, any t'ang in p'ticula'?" The butcher asked in a calmness that I found terrifying. We were dealing with meat here, wasn't he concerned, in case I was some sort of cannibal or something?!
"I... Anything that could.....satisfy a young gryphon?... Uh.... Rabbit? Duck? Chicken?" I asked tentatively. Never in a million years, would I have believed I'd be in this position... I had no idea what to do.
"At t' moment, I only gots chicken, ma'am. Will t'at do?" He responded, though it was a little hard to understand his accent.
"I guess? I'll buy... Some chicken? " I asked, trying to move on with this... The hardest part was actually going to be bringing it home, if I took too long, and ponies began their days.
"How big ye gon' have t'em??" He asked, though this time, I really couldn't understand him... These questions were nerve-wracking at best...
"Just... Get me two, or something," I started saying, "... No, three... No cutting, Don't care how big.... I just want to get home...and can I get more than one bag?" I asked before paying the butcher. I was going to need the extra bag after all this...
" 'Aight, t'en" the butcher said, before simply placing the three uncooked, skinned birds, in what appeared to be a leather saddlebag, likely so that it could hold the weight.
" I meant.. I want the second bag to be plastic..." I asked, when the butcher was about to place the third chicken in the second bag. He simply nodded and handed me one, placing the third chicken in the original bag, which was now bulging with the blatantly visible raw meat. Best to get home quickly..... Ponies could probably smell me a mile away at this rate.... I was going to need another shower after this....
I began walking... No, trotting... Okay, galloping home from the grocery store, ignoring the looks that I found myself getting, and finally, made it home, breathing heavily. And just as I'd predicted, Chirp was wide awake, looking at me, or more specifically, the leather bag, of which I quickly tossed in the freezer, trying to get my breath.
"No.... Not now, Chirp... " I told him sternly. Could he even eat raw meat? Possibly, if he was a wild gryphon, then his body would be adapted to not suffer from such a thing... I wasn't going to take chances, though, so I began heating up the oven. To think I thought I'd only ever use it to bake cakes and pies....
Well... That was out of the way... For now, I decided to stick to my other plans. I had to start making plans for how Chirp would learn his name..... Which I had no idea how to start... I still had his attention, so that was a head start.
I sat down in front of him and did what I thought would work best.
"Repeat. After. Me," I started saying, making gestures with my hoof from my mouth , forward, and pointing At myself. "Chirp. Chirp. Chirp." I repeated, pointing at him every time I said his name.
"Repeat. After. Me. Chirp. Chirp. Chirp." I kept going, for maybe 7 times.
He chirped again, just like yesterday, though this time he looked he was preparing to say it.
"Repeat. After. Me. Chirp. Chirp." I began again, until-
"(Me) Chirp?" I heard him say, and he pointed at himself.
"Yes! You. Are. Chirp. Chirp. Chirp!" I said, doing the motions again, reinforcing the name.
"Chirp Chirp Chirp?" He asked, tilting his head.
No! I mean... "No." I said firmly, shaking my head.. "Just Chirp." I said once again., pointing at him.
"(I) Just Chirp?" He asked, pointing at himself again.
"Chirp." I confirmed, pointing at him the little gryphon.
"Chirp!" He repeated happily, and I smiled.
"Yes!" I congratulated, clapping my hooves. I pointed at him gesturing with my head, trying to let him know to speak.
"Chirp!" He said, and I lowered my hoof, and pointed at him again. He repeated in turn, and a clapped again. I went over it with him a few times, and then I started saying his name. He pointed at himself, and I knew then, that he knew his name.
Now it was time for my name. "Shhhhhh," I went, putting my hoof to my lips, and he seemed to get the clue. I pointed at my self and began speaking.
"Lovely Lights. Lovely Lights. " I said, lightly pounding my chest twice for each time.
He pointed at me and seemed to get it, so I nodded. "Yes."
"Lovely Lights. Lovely Lights." I started, and-
"Lights?" He questioned, pointing at me, and I had to shake my head. "No."
I tried pounding my chest once this time. "Lovely Lights. Lovely Lights." I kept repeating.
"Lovely lights?" He said, pointing at me, and I nodded, clapping. "Yes! Lovely Lights."
"Lovely Lights!" He exclaimed, pointing at me, and clapping himself.
"Yes!" I said. I pointed at myself a few times, and he was able to get my name. I pointed to him, and he said his.
Now for some advanced stuff... And then I was done for now.
I pointed at him with one hoof, and the other, I put my hoof to my mouth. "Shhhhhhh. Shhhhhhh." I went, and he seemed to stay quiet, even as I had my hoof pointing to him.
"I. Am. Lovely Lights. You. Are. Chirp." I started repeating, pointing at myself and him in turn, once for each word.
Then I changed it up a bit, and started pointing at him. "I. Am- " I started, signaling him to speak.
Then pointing to my self: "You. Are-"
"Lovely Lights." He said.
We repeated this as well for a few times, and I finally got him to say what I wanted him to say.
"I am Chirp! You are Lovely Lights!" He said, clapping. I'd taught him how to identify, at least, and over the course of the next several minutes, I taught him both Yes, and No, so his ability to speak was shaping up quite nicely.
Dear, Celestia, I'm teaching a foal how to speak.
By now, the oven was ready, and I levitated one of the uncooked chickens into the oven. I didn't now how long it would take, but I figured I could check over time. Though I thought it would take at least an hour, so there was another matter on hand to do. My workplace. Taking care of a foal was something I couldn't keep from Mr. Frosty, my boss. I wouldn't ask for a raise or anything, but I'd have to let him know. Things could pop up in an instant, especially when I started sending Chirp to school. Huh... Already thinking about school.... If I could hire a tutor to teach him some Equestrian, even just a bit, he'd be ready to attend, possibly in the next two months, at least.
I picked little Chirp up and set him on my back, and began walking to work. Actually, looking at the time, I wasn't even going to be late. If I went to work today, that is. But no, I needed to get a foal sitter, before I could get back to working. I finally reached my workplace, and walked into the building, where one of my co-workers, a yellow Pegasi stallion with green hair, greeted me.
"Hey-a, Lovely Lights! How did the camping trip g- WHAT is that on your back?!" He yelled, stunned at the sight of the young gryphon.
"I am Chirp! You are...?" He asked, as if almost on signal.
"Hey, Fluorescent Bulb. This is Chirp," I said, pointing to both of them as I said their names. "Is Mr. Frosty here yet? My trip got cancelled, for the reasons you can see."
" Uh, yeah, he's out back. Sorry about your trip..." He said. Pretty much everypony here knew about it, and then I wasn't able to go.
"Could you go get him? I can't take Chirp back there. I'll hold the fort while you're gone. " I asked nicely, to which Fluorescent nodded, and went out the door behind the counter.. The place where the lights were being made.
Sure enough, Mr. Frosty came through the door after about two minutes, and well, he was just as stunned as Fluorescent.
"Where'd you find find it?" Was the first question he gave me, which was where even I became a bit worried.
"Him. Just... Out on the road walking towards me. But it's weird, there aren't any gryphons in the surrounding area. He wasn't even near his mother or anything, so I took him back home, and decided to well, adopt him. I'll need at most, a week off, until I can get a foalsitter. I've named him Chirp..." I told him, a little nervous.
"Hehe, you don't know the first thing about taking care of a kid." He told me, laughing.
"Well by Celestia, I'm going to try. Unless you know anypony who can take care of a gryphon? " I mused, though I got no responses.
"Alright, I'll give you two weeks. Just come back as soon as you can, Lovely. " He said, before waving me off, smiling.
"Thanks, boss, will do. I'll keep you updated!" I said, leaving the building and returning home. I was getting a little hungry, and I was sure that chirp was going to be even hungrier, so maybe the chicken would be done cooking by the time I get back.
Well.. I guess that today is the day I try to hire a foalsitter.
I woke up with a bit of a start. I was hungry, and I smelled food. But I didn't see any. But it smelled... Oddly enough, like chicken...huh.....
Then I noticed somepony( was I already using that as a pronoun?) at the door, and sure enough, it was the mare. She seemed a little sick, though I quickly figured out why. As well as where my nose was trying to lead me. She had a leather saddlebag just... Filled with... Meat. And from her breathing, you'd have thought she'd murdered somepony or stolen something to get it. Hopefully that wasn't the case.
Well, she clearly noticed me staring, and quickly threw the bag, leather, chicken and all into her freezer... Which I was sure was bad for the leather. I wonder how leather tastes... I wondered, out of curiosity. You can't blame me. I was a mostly carnivorous being, and leather was just tanned animal skins... Most of the time. I'm getting a real bad habit of of seeing how things taste.... I'm going to end up choking on something, one of these days.
"(No... Not now, Chirp.)" the mare said firmly, before turning on the oven, and siting with me. Huh. I was ready to just eat it... That would be bad. Well, wouldn't my stomach be adapted to that kind of thing? Eh.. Dunno.
"(Repeat. After. Me. Chirp. Chirp. Chirp.)" she started saying, pointing at me. Jeez, what did you want.... I really needed to learn this language. She kept repeating the words and pointing to me, like... Too much.
Wait. Was she actually teaching me now? I said I'd need to learn, but not so soon! Well, she repeated it a few times more and well...
"Hmmmm....." I tried to say, but it came out as that short bird cry again. There was one word she kept using, while pointing at me. She was either teaching me the word 'You', or she was.... Giving me a name? I suppose there was one way to figure it out.
"(Me) Chirp?" I asked, pointing at myself, careful not to use words that she wouldn't know. Otherwise, we would be at an impasse of mutual cluelessness. And that would be bad.
She seemed real happy when I did though, so I must of said the right word. "(Yes! You. Are.) Chirp. Chirp. Chirp." She kept repeating, so my name must of been 'Chirp' three times? Is that how it worked an equestria?
"Chirp Chirp Chirp?" I asked, to which she shook her head and said something which I... Could safely assume meant no, so I made a note of that to myself. "No. (Just). Chirp."
Um...... "(I)Just Chirp?" I tried again, pointing at myself once more.. I figured the other word meant some sort of 'only'.
"Chirp." She repeated once more, and, I was pretty much on board with it. So that was my name.
"(Chirp!)" I shouted, smiling. As much as a beak could smile at least.
"Yes!" She said, clapping. Well.... I guess that was easy? She went over it with me until she thought I got it, I guess, and then she moved on.
"Shhhhhh." She went, and I stopped speaking. Then she began speaking again, this time pointing at herself. " (Lovely. Lights. Lovely. Lights)"... Was that her name?
"Lights?" I ventured, though from her reaction, it was the wrong way to say it.
"No. Lovely Lights. Lovely Lights." she corrected, and I realized, or more of, remembered, ponies usually had two (or more) parts to their names. She didn't name me as one though, clearly.
"Lovely Lights? " I tried, and she nodded, and started clapping again, in which I joined her. I dunno. I felt so much like a kid again. Oh wait. I actually was... Yeah, this was really strange, now that I thought about it. Oh well. Was kinda fun. I was learning a new language, something I blew F and below in high school. Yeah. Je ne comprendre pas Français. That would translate to 'I don't understand French'... I think, it's been 4 years since I took that class. So.. Yeah, I was doing pretty well right now, compared to before.
Well, Lovely Lights was able to get me to learn her name, after a few repetitions, after which she started teaching me a few other words, which I waited for eagerly.
"(I. Am.) Lovely lights, (You. Are.) Chirp." She began, all the while making her hoof gestures. Oh god. Sentences. I hated sentences... But this was kinda necessary?
I was about to speak, cause it was pretty clear Lovely Lights was teaching me to identify ponies, but then she reversed the first words . Damn it, lady, what you playing at? Bullshit. This is hell. I can't understand the native species if this new planet/universe/country/what-have-you. At least I'm not an adult in this body.
Well, she kept trying, so might as well....something about my name and hers... Wait. I listened more closely to what she was saying this time, and paid even more attention to the hand gestures she made, which she changed every so often on similar words.
"You?" I tried, pointing at myself, at which while Lovely Lights shook her head, her expression told me I was sorta correct, so I pointed at her, said it again, and she confirmed that I was correct.
Which meant the other word was.... "I?" I tested, pointing to myself. Lovely Lights assured me it was correct, so.... Now the other words, which was some sort of 'be' in terms of definition, I suppose.
I tried clapping along with the words I was saying, so I could keep track of the syllables, and it kinda worked.
"I am Chirp! You are Lovely Lights!" I claimed, and by her reaction, first time was correct. Good. I didn't want to sit through this shit anymore, it was just more or less, interesting... However, apparently, Lovely Lights didn't think I had the words 'yes,' and 'no' learned, which I DID, so... The next few minutes was taken up with me proving I did, because I was being a jerk and getting them wrong on purpose. Though that failed when I finally slipped up and went 'Ye-Noooo......', and she ended up calling it off.
She seemed to be done with words however, as she (finally) put a chicken in the oven that was as of now, turning into a heater. But then she picked me up and left the house. But you don't leave an oven unattended like that! I dunno. Magic? Really, I was still wondering where ponies got electricity, living in some sort of medieval fantasy setting. Okay, maybe I wasn't really thinking about it, actually. But... We better not come back home to a burning house. All the food was in there.
I've been thinking a lot about food lately..... Maybe cause I haven't eaten in... 12 hours? I thought to myself. Come to think of it, how long had this body gone without food?
Well, Lovely Lights took me a little far into the town, which was definitely not Ponyville. And from my surroundings, nowhere nearby, either. So I had even less of an idea where I was. Actually, where in time was I? Before season 3? Season 1? There's a lot of major events in the Poniverse that might have not happened yet, or even, just taken place.
I looked around the town, and it seemed ponies were coming out of their houses, so they must've been getting ready for the day. Surprisingly, the sun wasn't all the way up, more or less, it was... Actually similar to Earth's sun, it didn't jet up, it more of stayed pretty static, with ever slight movements.... Or not. Maybe I'm just seeing things from looking at the sun too long. So I should stop.
We ended up entering a pretty wide and long building, which happened to be a store for lights. There were a lot of them too, in shapes I didn't even know you could get light bulbs in. No, shapes I didn't even know you could get the filaments in. I swear I saw one on the shape of the sun. How the hell do you even do that? Let me guess: Magic...... That better not be the answer to everything. Even though it probably is.
Anyways... So the male yellow Pegasi who was at the front desk began speaking to Lovely Lights, but... He didn't seem to thrilled to see me. I would be pretty concerned too, if a baby animal was hanging on someone's back. I decided to begin a little conversation with him, even if I knew a maximum vocabulary of 9 words, including my name and Lovely Lights' name.
"I am Chirp! You are...?" I tried asking. What? I get to learn more words by saying five.
"(Hey,) Florescent Bulb. (This is) Chirp. " I heard Lovely Lights say, but... Let's just say that beyond names, I wasn't really interested in the conversation, and instead, I was looking around at all the different lights in the store. They were amazing, really... some of the lights didn't even look like lights at first glance... Or second... Or third.... Or.... Yeah, some of the lights didn't look like lights at all, yet they clearly glowed with bright radiance, which even some of that was sorted in different colors. Heck, I even saw some bush light that was covered in flora-styled bulbs. And I swear that the windows and plants were blinking when I wasn't looking!
Wait...... It only now occurred to me that Lovely Lights' cutie mark was lamp. Did she work here? That would certainly explain why she wasn't buying anything yet. Oh, and why the other pony knew her. Or she could of just been a frequent customer... and she had a big interest in lamps?
If it was the former, did she make some of the lights? Wait, how many items in the house were really just lamps shaped to look like them? I wanna know! Ooh.... Maybe they have fancy flashlight beams, like in the episode 'Bats'!
Before I knew it, we were actually walking out the store, and... Towards home... How long was I just looking around? I mean... OkY. There was a lot of stuff in the store. It was like a christmas shoppers paradise.....
I really need to stop letting my mind run on tangents like that.
First things first.... A foalsitter... I didn't really know many ponies in Buckston who had the free time to watch a child... Okay, I could think of one, but she already had a foal herself, so there was a chance she might not accept.. Most ponies in Buckston were workers really. It also dawned on me that not only would I need a foalsitter, I needed one who wouldn't be uncomfortable with feeding Chirp meat. I was also going to need somepony who would also teach Chirp Equestrian in the meantime. I wouldn't be able to do it on my own, and if I did, it would take forever, especially if I kept going to work. Maybe, if I could get at least two of those in one pony, It wouldn't be so bad...
I finally made it to my home, where I set Chirp down on the couch and opened the oven, using my magic to take the chicken out and set it on a platter, after which I turned the oven off. It smelled... Better now, but it still gave me a queasy feeling. I suppose the only thing to do was to cut it.... Which I had no idea how to do... Would a knife even cut through bone? I didn't want to touch or inspect it, and I maintained my distance from it. It was still hot, just coming out of the oven, but.... I mostly just didn't want to touch it... I levitated one of the little butter knives I'd had, and while the knife... Easily went through the cooked flesh, there was still the bone, which I suppose wasn't edible... So I cut around it, carving out a slab of the chicken, which was bending over and, admittedly... I was going even faster... It wasn't alive anymore or anything... But... The way it moved, and how resistant it was to the knife.... It was the most disgusting thing I'd ever think to see in my life.... Well, that and maybe when Chirp slurped a worm off the ground.
But this had to be done, however, otherwise Chirp would starve. He couldn't live off of berries and.... That was really it, actually... Well, and worms... I certainly couldn't be the only pony out there dealing with this sort of thing... I'm sure some ponies actually have it worse. At least Chirp wasn't a bear or something like that.... Maybe sometime in the past, some other pony was once in the exact same situation I was in right now?
Nonetheless, I had to be strong for this task. There might be a time where I might have to be the one to go out and kill an animal myself to feed Chirp, and this would have to be a normal task for me, an everyday thing.... Powers above, have mercy on my soul....
Well, Chirp, of course, didn't seem to have the inhibitions I'd held, because the next time I saw him, he'd somehow gotten onto the counter, and was clawing at one of the pieces of chicken, at which point he grabbed and ripped part of the chicken off, and bit into it....... It was discomforting, no, repulsive, even, even more so than actually getting the chicken and walking home with it.... Needless to say, I went out the door, and proceeded to empty the contents (or lack thereof. I hadn't eaten since last night...) of my stomach...
After a few moments, and getting a hold of myself, I went back inside, and it seemed that Chirp was still gnawing on the bone of the chicken, though he had also eaten the large slab I'd cut out, so... I suppose he'd finished? Though now was the matter of storing the chicken... Hmm....
An idea in my head, I'd grabbed a bowl and a plate, and began using my magic to, for lack of a better term... Strip (there's no other way to describe what I was doing) the chicken of its meat , placing the meat in the bowl, and covered it with the plate. The piece Chirp was gnawing on I suppose was too big for him to choke on, but beyond that, I disposed of the rest of the chicken, and put the meat in the refrigerator. Would save a lot of grief to just get the entire thing over with.... I decided to let Chirp gnaw on his bone, while I went out to find somepony that was free enough to foalsit him. Though first, I went a few houses over, ( It was more like, 14, but that's still a short walk, compared to whst I'm used to.) to see if a certain pony I knew could do the job.
Knocking on the door, it only took a few moments before a middle-aged Pegasi Mare with a yellow mane answered the door. White Thunder.
"Oh, Lovely Lights!" She greeted, surprised. The last time I'd seen her was a months ago, before she'd headed to Cloudsdale for a training bout. She was allegedly getting too old though, and was planning on retiring soon, within the next few years. She'd gotten back about three weeks ago, since supposedly she was at the shop at around that time.
"Hey, White Thunder, how's Sunny Skies doing? I have a favor to ask." I told her. Sunny Skies was her daughter, and she'd been attending school. If Sunny was doing well, and didn't need parental attention, maybe White Thunder would be able to foalsit Chirp.
" Sunny Skies is doing great! She's getting A's and B's all around! What kinda favor you need me for?" She asked, her attitude unchanged. It was interesting really, and I always wondered if she'd stay like this throughout her years.
" I'll have to show you, it's a bit of a story, one that doesn't make sense. Even I don't know. " I said. I didn't want to go through the entire 'But how?' conversation again.
When we finally reached my house, I opened the door, and sure enough, Chirp was still on the counter, trying to chew on the bone.
"So who's the lucky father?" White Thunder asked, smirking, and I quickly became embarrassed.
"Wha- no! No no no no no no! I mean... No. This is Chirp. I found him out on the road last night while on my afternoon hike. You know, the one I take every night?" I said, and White Thunder only nodded, listening.
" But since I knew there were no gryphons nearby, I thought I'd take him home, but.... Long story short, I need a foal sitter, one that can teach him to talk, and since you're a Pegasi, maybe you could teach him to fly?" I asked, before looking around at the counter again. "I think he already has a head start on that though... " I quickly added.
"I can certainly teach him to fly! I'm a Wonderbolt, remember? And I've got practice enough to get him talking before you know it! " She said, smiling. Though the smile quickly faded as she brought up the dreaded question I was sure anypony was going to ask.
"But he's a gryphon, isn't he? I've met a few gryphons, but it's not enough for me to assume, so... What does he usually eat?" White Thunder asked, slightly narrowing her vision.
"I was afraid you'd ask that, and I won't force it to be up to you, but..." I started, opening the fridge, the clear bowl easily showing the meat inside. "Meat." I finished quickly.
"I figured. Most gryphons I meet are always complaining about the food in the area or something, like it isn't enough for them. I can feed him, though I'd probably have the need to wash my mouth out after it all...." She stated. Wait, she was volunteering to actually.... I guess I couldn't complain, after all.
"Really? So how much do I owe you? " I asked, getting out my note book, though White Thunder simply raised a hoof.
"Ah, nothing. Though it'd be nice to have a godmother for Sunny Skies, whenever I'm away on my little 'outings'. I always ask a neighbor, but I suppose it would work out just as fine. Mutual needs, y'know. I'm actually heading out in another few months, so maybe by then, Chirp'll be able to hold a decent conversation, hmm?" She said, and I was okay with the terms, so I nodded. Huh, this might go even better than I thought... Actually, it already has, but, I meant the tutoring.
"Deal, White Thunder. I won't forget this. Maybe I can get you an Equestria-wide discount at Mr. Frosty's Light Emporium?" I offered, and by the looks of it, White Thunder agreed, as told by her nod.
"When do you think we can start? Tomorrow? Next week?" I asked. I couldn't stand by too long.
"Well I'm here now, and you said Chirp's got a head start on flying, right? Let's see just how big that start is." She said, flexing her wings.
More than too happy to speak, really, I nodded and began my way to the door. I had to tell Mr. Frosty I'd already gotten a sitter! Though I'd probably need adjusted hours ate least one day a week so I could fix up the chicken I'd bought. Speaking of time, maybe tonight I'd be able to take trip with me to see the sunset! Hmm... Shaping up to make way for a family tradition, huh?
"Wait." I heard White Thunder say before I walked out the door. "How many words does he know alreasy?" She asked.
"Oh. I, am, you, are, yes, and no. As well as my name and his, though I don't think he knows the meaning of either. Just see if he can learn a proper vocabulary, I guess. I have to tell my boss the news." I told her.
"Alright, I'll see ya later, and I'll have him flying by the end of the week!" White Thunder called.
Did I already say this town clearly wasn't Ponyville? Yeah, I actually finally saw that, on the other side of the town, opposite the mountain, it was pretty flat lands that kept going so long, until I saw another mountain range so far away, it was blue with the distance. I wonder what that was? Maybe that was Canterlot? Or maybe the Smokey Mountains (some other thing on the official map. Forgot where it was, though.)?
How similar was this Equestria to the show, even? Did it even follow? There's so many questions beyond just where I was. For all I know, I might actually be in Ponyville, just a different version of it.
Well after passing... More than few houses, and a little extra walking, we finally got home, and Lovely Lights set me down on the couch, and got the chicken out the oven. It smelled wonderful... Though Lovely Lights didn't seem to think so, as she just stood still. I suppose this was something she hadn't done before, and wasn't prepared to do, given the way she'd grabbed a knife and how slow she was cutting the chicken.
No, wait, she was using a butter knife. I don't even mean those serrated edge ones, either. I mean those things you can slide your finger acrossthe edge of 20 miles an hour, and not get cut( though it's recommended you don't. I'm Just exaggerating). So, yes. Anypony would be cutting slowly with one of those. They weren't exactly supposed to be used on meat. Though I suppose it must of been the only knife she had....
But I was getting more than just hungry at this point. If I could get on top of the counter, I could probably grab a bit of the chicken, probably faster than the unsharpened knife. But how was I going to get up there? It was much too high for me to jump, and there weren't any knobs to grab on below the counter, on the subject of climbing at least.
Wait... I was a gryphon. I had wings! Maybe I could fly up to the counter? I felt one of the wings with my claws, trying to get a clue as to where the muscle was, and how to move them. The wings appeared to be attached to the back of my chest, just behind my shoulders. I tried moving my right wing, which responded slowly, but instantly, so I tried to flex both of them, and I was actually able to get them into get into a fully-extended position, perpendicular to me, as if I was preparing to glide. Now I just had to get them back in a folded position, which was easy enough, I simply had to relax the muscle, and my wings would go back into their original position. Almost like extra arms, really.
I was smart enough not to actually try flapping, yet, though, since I knew I'd probably end up on my back, or worse, by doing that. Though I was going to have to try the movements, so I began slowly, carefully making a flapping motion, which was accomplished by tensing the muscles slightly, so that step was already down. I could easily feel the weak lift that was being generated from me simply moving my wings downwards, so it was easy to assume that I could do what I was thinking of doing.
Well, time for the leap of faith, I told myself. I turned my wings and body a little, and flapped slowly, trying to get trajectory of where I'd be launched, and.... Well.... I gave it a big push, and I almost instantly found myself head first into the wall, if it wasn't for the fact I had my claws out in front of me. Instead, I was able to react to the impact and do a mini wall jump to the counter below, and well.. I was on the counter, just like I was aiming for. Flying was going to be a piece of cake, I bet.
Well, I walked my way over to the chicken, and Lovely Lights still seemed to be stunned at what she was doing, so I did what I always do when it's chicken for dinner( though this time, I wasn't being told to wash my hands first.): grabbed the leg of the chicken, and ripped it off, as well as any meat that came with it, and began devouring it. And that's when Lovely Lights saw me, apparently, because she dashed out the door, and I could only hear gagging sounds. Go figure, I guess.
Well, I quickly finished the meat on the bone, and, Still a little hungry, I ate what Lovely Lights had already carved out. With that done, and Lovely Lights still outside, I began trying to get the rest of the meat off the bone. What? It tasted great. I wasn't letting any go to waste!
Lovely Lights did eventually return though, and began shredding the chicken in chunks, and placed I t in a bowl that she stored in the fridge. Huh, maybe she got over it? I kept sucking on the bone, and honestly, let's just say I didn't notice Lovely Lights leave the house, until she returned, with another white mare, though this one was a Pegasi. A friend of hers?
They engaged in a little conversation, which ended with Lovely Lights leaving the house, and going somewhere. Was the other mare in the room there to watch over me, then? I suppose I had my question answered when the Pegasi walked over to me.
"(Hello), Chirp. I am White Thunder. White Thunder." The mare said, waving. Uh... Was that word a greeting, then?
"Hello, White Thunder???" I said back, waving to her. She nodded, which I thought meant I was correct.
"Hmm.. You (really do learn fast)." She said, though in a tone I had to assume meant she wasn't teaching me anything yet. "(Well. First things first)." White Thunder said, before pointing down with her wing. "(Down), Chirp. (Down. Down.) Down. " she ordered, which I assumed she meant for me to get off the counter, so I jumped down.
"Yes! (Now follow me. Follow. Me. Follow. Me.) Follow. Me" she repeated, motioning me towards her, and heading outside, which I did as well.
Finally outside, White Thunder turned around and motioned to her eye. " (Watch me), Chirp. (Watch. Me. Watch. Me.) Watch. Me." She continued, before flapping her wings in quick up, and slow down motions, generating a bit of a gust, until she stopped, in a position that looked like she was going to take off, before looking at me. As if expecting me to do something... But what....
My eyes went wide. Wait...wait. Wait wait wait wait wait wait, WAIT! Was this really happening, right now? Was she going to try to get me to learn how to fly?! I mean, it's only been a day, maybe, but we're already going there??? I tried to calm down, and I outstretched my wings to match her own, however small mine were. Let's see if I can keep the number of faceplants under 5. I was feeling a little confident and safe really, knowing that if anything went wrong, I guess the Pegasus would know when to save me from crashing too hard( and maybe when not to save me, actually... Damn it).
So before we even got to the air, White Thunder was showing me a bit of control, and after about an hour and a half, I was able to do that flapping thing without leaving the ground, though I did find myself leaving the ground quite a lot in that time. And while I did fall over, I only faceplanted once, so that goal was still actually possible. I also was able to learn how to recover from a messed up wing flap, thinks to a few staged slip ups from White Thunder, as well as the catlike reflexes I had.
After that, it was actually time to fly, which I supposed I wouldn't screw up too badly, long as I remembered to recover. Let me tell you now, after White Thunder had verified my wings were in shape, she... Took off. And waved me to follow ( though she did stop a bit of a ways up.
"(Well fuck you too,) White Thunder." I said under my breath. Did she expect me to just try? Meh... Trial by error.
I did the little stunt we were doing earlier for a few moments , and after measuring my jump and which way I'd be going, just like in the kitchen with the counter, I flapped my wings and.....I wasn't touching the ground anymore, and I was getting higher, and closer to my mentor. Holy shit, I was flying. I didn't dare look down really, I feared how high I already was. Except I didn't really know how to go down....well shit...
I reached White Thunder and she caught me in her hooves, preventing from going higher, and she quickly brought me back down to the ground, where she set me down.
I had a guess for what my next lesson was going to be, though, and maybe I'd be able to get down on my own soon enough.....
Did I say I could fly? Yes? Well I'll say it again.
I made my way to the the shop and, sure enough, I was able to get there without much of a problem. Florescent Bulb, though he was a little surprised to see me, waved over to me, though he seemed to be occupied with a customer, so I simply waved back. There were quite a few ponies in the store, so it seemed like a pretty normal day. I headed through the door behind the counter, and into the factory. This was where the lights were made. The glass was shaped and formed entirely with magic, the reason for the extremely diverse designs that were featured in the store. After that the lights were left to harden overnight, and in the end, they'd be ready for use. I didn't exactly know too much about it, I more or less, was just the one to provide the designs, and helped around the store during the day.
I turned right after entering the factory, and found myself at the door of Mr.Frosty's office. I knocked on the door, and I heard him give the go ahead to enter. I opened the door, and, of course, he was also surprised to see me.
"Lovely Lights? Back so soon? Whatever happened to... Uh, Chirp?" He asked, though he remained in his seat. I nodded, letting him know It was the correct name.
"It turns out, one of my neighbors, White Thunder, said she could watch him, and she said she could start today. Though I don't know how long it'll last. I just want him to learn enough vocabulary for me to start enrolling him in a school, really. " I said, a little unsure.
Mr. Frosty smiled, nodding. "Well I'll be glad to have you back, Lovely. But for today, take the day off or something. You got a family to care of now, y'know? Go home and check on the kid, and tell him I said 'Hey'. That'll be your job for the day." He told me, before attending to the papers on his desk, no doubt shipment orders to other towns. Or review letters, perhaps.
"Oh, And Mr. Frosty? I might have offered her a discount at all the stores... She wasn't asking for any money or anything, so I felt like it was some ripoff scandal I was pulling..." I told him, and he chuckled.
"Hmm, what's one pony going to do to affect our sales? I'll think about it, at least. Just get home, I have to sort these orders. " he told me, and I left the room, closing the door quietly.
I waved goodbye to Florescent Bulb, and headed out the door on my way home. Actually... Maybe I could go get that tent I was meaning to buy. Or at least look at them. My little camping trip was going to happen again, that was a given. It was just delayed. Besides I had to make up for... Was it really only last night that I'd found Chirp? Seemed like it was weeks ago, with the progress I was making, and how fast I was coming to terms living with him.
So I made way to the outdoor recreation store, and I bee lines straight for the tents. I wanted one that was easily carry-able and... One that could fit two.... I almost forgot that Chirp would likely be coming with me as well( I couldn't leave him in the house alone all night and morning) , so he needed camping gear as well. There obviously weren't any boots that would work with his paws and talons, and I'd need extra water to bring. I selected a tent I'd found suitable, however, and if Chirps paws were starting to feel pain, he could ride on my back until we got to the campsite.
I made a note of what to get, and began my long walk home. I wondered how they were doing already?
Well I got home, and Chirp and White Thunder were sitting on the couch, relaxing, apparently. White Thunder got up after seeing me, wide grin on her face.... Was I missing something?
"Chirp here really does learn fast, Lovely. I've already gotten him flying. We've just now gotten inside, all that's left is for him to learn how to go down, and how to turn. We've got straight flying ready to go, though, and that's what counts. First steps first, after all!" She told me, and my jaw dropped (metaphorically, of course).
"Wait, already? But how? It takes weeks to learn how to fly, doesn't it? I've only been gone for little more than an hour!" I asked. It was rather hard to believe that Chirp would be learning to fly in near record time.
"Can't exactly tell you, Lovely Lights. Trade secrets. Can't exactly uphold the name of being a Wonderbolt if you're resorting to tutors to teach your foal to fly. Would be rather embarrassing, don't you think?" She said, shaking her head. I simply shrugged. I hadn't been near many Pegasi, but parents would often complain about things like this. It's why Flight School was such a popular thing. The parents weren't the ones to deal with teaching their foals to fly.
"Well, I'm not a Pegasus. Couldn't you at least show me?" I asked, though she shook her head again.
"Nuh-uh. Not supposed to even show it to anypony other than another Wonderbolt or anypony, specifically any foal, that I'm personally teaching, in a one-on-one environment. Beyond that, I'll just say it's one of our practice routines. On the other hoof, if Chirp shows it to you, I can't argue. Though I'll be sure to tell him at some point when he's older to not just show it to everypony he sees." She stated, and I suppose I understood. I couldn't just pressure her into telling me.
"Well I only came home really to get some notes, so I can buy some things. Did you want anything? " I asked, before grabbing a few bank notes. The tent was going to be too expensive to purchase with just bits, so I was going to have to pull money from my banking account. Which wasn't a problem really. Like I said, I had a lot of extra money. I could move across Equestraia and back with what I had.... Which would probably be the one thing that would completly bankrupt me, however (that and trying to get a mansion. My wealth came from the fact that I didn't use my money, not that I gained a lot of it. Mansions require too much maintenance).
"A chocolate bar? Some oats?" White Thunder replied, chuckling, though she shook her head afterwards. I still noted the chocolate bar down on my list of things to purchase, and grabbed a few bits. Don't know why, though, she was clearly joking.
I made my way back to the store, and since I'd already singled out what I was getting, I was quickly able to buy the tent and a bedroll, as well as a small hiking pack. I wasn't going to be able to carry everything at once, so I got a second pack for Chirp to carry, where'd I'd put the smallest of things.
I stopped by the grocery store on the way back, and bought some fruit ( as well as a chocolate bar, as per White Thunder's request). If Chirp could eat fruit, I may as well balance his diet with it. Which reminded me I hadn't eaten since last night... I suppose I still had that sandwich in the refrigerator, and those apples.
Then I walked home. Approaching my little building, I noticed White Thunder trying teach Chirp to land. He really did learn how to fly already, huh?
I went inside and set the fruit into the bowl I kept it in, and put the chocolate bar in the fridge, and began eating the (cold) sandwich. I went outside, and watched the two flyers go at work. It seemed that Chirp had a hard time trying to slowly land, but it looked like he developed his own technique of landing, talons first, at an angle to the ground. He also seemed to be able to turn quite easily, with a few moments of practice. He looked like he knew what he was supposed to do, which was strange, but it all worked to the benefit.
And then he did something that, by White Thunder's reaction, was completely unexpected. He turned upside down while he was flying, closed his wings, and dove downwards, almost like a falcon . Thankfully, he pulled up at the last second, and, with a flap of his wings, was able to come to a (near) complete stop, before landing. What even was that? I'd never seen something like that before, from any Pegasi, not even White Thunder! It was... Well... Odd... I can't think of any other words to describe it.
A dark little thought crossed my mind, before I shook it off. If he was one of those, he probably would've at least understood Equestrian. And his attitude didn't seem to match up with what how I'd expect them to act.... Could they even transform into gryphons?
He was a very strange child, indeed... I just didn't know why, or how...
After a few more drills on taking off, we finally went inside, and I leapt onto the couch, tired. White Thunder joined me, though not for long, as Lovely Lights quite promptly came walking through the door. She got up, and began talking to her, but I simply closed my eyes, and tried to nap, even though they kept on saying my name( it didn't sound like they were calling me). Soon enough, Lovely Lights left, and I continued my little sleep session.
Don't know how long I'd slept, but when I woke, Lovely Lights was back, and White Thunder once again had me outside. This time, she adjusted her shoulders and hooves in mid flight, which affected her direction. I followed close behind her, though I was always late to turn with her by a large gap. But I was able to turn in flight, which was... Well... Nice? With practice, maybe I wouldn't be flying into walls when doing hard turns. But other than that, it was pretty easy to deal with turning, long as I didn't overextend it.
I was also able to learn that using my shoulders would let me move in some sort of strafing maneuver, and I could also use them to twist around if I did it fast enough. I was nowhere near as good as White Thunder, though, but she obviously had more practice. She slowed down a bit as we neared the ground, before breaking and descending.... Something I didn't exactly know how to do yet. Luckily, she stopped me before I could find myself stuck in a bush. White Thunder set me down, instructing me to watch her again, to which she began flapping her wings to ascend and descend multiple times. I tried to follow in suit, but I simply had trouble getting up into the sky without a jumping start. I was able to do it (after more than a few times), but, of course, me being me, I decided I had a better idea.
Have I ever mentioned I played World of Warcraft? That was kinda my first introduction with flying gryphons in detail really. And I've always thought, 'this thing is part cat, right? It's gotta have some weird unique landing, especially if it's a winged, quadruped hunting animal.' Landing while hovering has too many steps involved for a predator. Landing on hind legs just doesn't work out for gryphons in the long run. But the forelegs... Now we were getting places.... I love the roleplay aspect of the game, y'know?
I simply took off on my own, and, staying close to the ground, I tested my theory. I slowed down, and landed front first, but I still followed up with my hind legs, and well, in an instant, I was just running. Got it on the first try. Or it just could've been dumb luck. I slowed to a stop, and returned to my previous position, using the same technique. White Thunder looked impressed with what I'd done, so I guess that was good.
"(Eh... That...works too...)" I heard her mumble, before motioning me to follow again, which I did, of course. It was kind of fun trying to keep up with her... Emphasis on trying. She got faster everytime I got close. Then again, I was a child, competing against an adult Pegasus.
Though I had one hell of an idea to try and beat her at her own game. But it was stupid. Dangerous as hell. I mentioned video games? Alright. I looked down, and we were pretty high. But I needed to be even higher. I slowed down, and went straight upwards. And then I fell backwards( entirely on purpose, of course), closing my wings. I contemplated closing my eyes, but I wasn't asking for a death wish. I waited a few moments, before spreading my wings again, and pulling up, slowing down.
Granted, I didn't do the dive completely correct. But I'm not landing at terminal velocity, cartoon world or not. I'm not that stupid.(so I said, after attempting a dive without knowing how to do it at all...) Okay, I'm pretty stupid. Just blame it on the boogie.
Of course, I did the most jackass thing I could do, and waved upwards at White Thunder, who seemed shocked, and with good reason, really. I would've been stunned too, if I saw a young gryphon fall out of the sky like that. Or if I even saw a gryphon.
White Thunder landed very quickly, however, smiling at me slightly. "Yes, yes, (Good work, kid.) " She said, nodding her head.
At some point later, we finally went inside again, and White Thunder looked towards the counter, and began to laugh.
"(You.. Actually got the chocolate bar? I betcha you hate having displeased company, then.)" she asked, walking towards (what I assume) was a fruit bar. Or chocolate. I wasn't keen on taste testing anything else for the rest of the week.
"(Well, Mr. Frosty sends me out on errands, at times, not all of which are buisness related. So I'd say that it's second nature for me to accept simple tasks...)" Lovely Lights told her, and the two kept going on in a conversation that I could only make out a few words to.
Which was, of course, pretty boring, so I explored the house. It was apparently a two floor house, though the top floor was a bit crowded, and only actually featured a bedroom and an office of sorts, which was full of designs, as well as what appeared to be maps.
I took a closer look at the maps, and I discovered even more details. I saw maps of Equestria... But none of them looked like anything I saw in the show. I couldn't even read some of the text. Equestrian writing seemed a bit... Runic.
Hell, even the maps looked different, and there were a lot more cities on the map than on the official one produced by Hasbro. (Which is to be expected, right? Equestria couldn't have only the ten or so cities on that map.)
I looked towards the middle of the map, spotting the golden sun hovering over what I assumed to be Canterlot. There seemed to actually be multiple cites around it, as well, so any one of them could be Ponyville. If there even was a Ponyville; the only familiar thing I've seen is Magical Legend Ponies, and that's not much.
Of course, with the luck I generally have, Lovely Lights eventually came upstairs to find me staring at the map on the wall.
"Chirp?" She called, before seeing me. "(What are you doing up here?)" she asked, looking around the room. I pointed at the map in response, and she smiled. "(I will tell you later.)" she said, and beckoned me to come back downstairs.
And when I followed her back to the main floor, I noticed something new in the room: backpacks, bedrolls, and what, at this point, I assumed were tents. Two of each, and the second of the pair was noticeably smaller. Oh hell no.
I've mentioned at least once I'm afraid of insects. Bees, ants, ticks, and all the other things that bite. I'm willing to smack a spider, though. I'm not allergic to them or anything, just some childhood fear. I've slightly gotten over it, but.... Camping? That is a no go, unless it's Yogi Bear park, where I can at least stay in a cabin, shrouded in the toxic fumes of Deet, waiting for the moment my mom comes in and nags me about using too much bug repellent.
Uh... Forget that last one. It's not like I used the whole can or anything. But I generally go to the extreme of using actual, bonafide insect extermination fluid as my personal Raid spray ( you know, the stuff that also kills bugs entering the affected area for the next month?). Just pour some of that into an empty perfume bottle, and mmmmm, I mean buisiness. Fuck bees, and fuck Raid.
Well there's no bug spray in Equestria, far as I know, but even if there was, I'm sure as hell Lovely Lights wouldn't let me anywhere near it.
I saw White Thunder was getting ready to leave, so I did what I'd naturally do in this circumstance as a kid. I hugged her leg and started saying "No", over and over. And over. And over. And over. I'd at least annoy them enough not to take me, if it came down to it. I'm quite the professional at being a nuisance.
"(I don't think he's fond of going, Lovely Lights.)" I heard White Thunder say. Of course, I couldn't apunderstand it, but I was more or less hoping it was in my favor.
"(You think so?)" I heard her reply, and her tone pretty much confirmed I'd won.
"(Think about it, who knows what's out there? You may have found Chirp in the forest, but that doesn't mean it's safe out there for him.)" White Thunder told Lovely Lights. " (Why don't you let him stay with me, and you can take him out on a day you aren't staying overnight?)" She offered, before smiling at me. " (Besides, Sunny Skies might want to know herself who's The reason I can't be home when she gets home from school.)"
"(I guess.... I'll see you tomorrow, then?)" Lovely Lights suggested, and with a simple nod, White Thunder had me out the door, and towards the town.
I'm such a horrible son.
The Domain of Thunder......heheheh..... No really, it's her house, so it applies.
White Thunder herded me a good number of houses over (though the distance between each house was sin-worthy...) , until we stopped at a house that seemed... Well, it looked exactly the same as the others to me, but I wasn't known for attention to detail. White Thunder approached the door, so I followed, assuming it must of been her house.
The first thing I noticed, however, was the badge hanging from the door. The insignia of the Wonderbolts. I mean, even I remember the thing from 'Rarity Investigates'. Was White Thunder a recruit or something along those lines? Or was it a parents' badge? I definitely wouldn't leave it on the door. It has to be pretty valuable, right? Or it could be fake. Most likely a fake, there's no way this old lady ravishingly young mare was a Wonderbolt (What? I have to keep my thoughts hidden as well, you know. Sure as hell there's some mind-reading magic out there. No chances.)
White Thunder had opened the door, though, so by the time I came back from my thoughts, there was no symbol, hidden behind the forsaken crevice that is known as the " open-door-corner". Every house has one, sometimes even 3. They hide your beautiful door ornaments, and every once in a while, your white clothes brush against it while they're hanging for you to grab when you walk out the door. And you wonder why they always have a few brown spots, no matter how much care you put into keeping them away from dust (Yes, I just solved all your problems with white clothes. Don't expect me to solve more.).
White Thunder beckoned me to come inside, so with the badge out of the way, I ventured inside, looking around.
The layout, of course, was certainly different from Lovely Lights' home, and actually, reminded me of my own home, minus the basement, at least. The front door opened up into the living room, void of a television, of course, but the couches were set up around the center, backs facing the windows, and with a glass table in the center, smothered in a pile of board game boxes, among of which I swore one was some equestrian Dungeons and Dragons, based on the cover art on the side. There were stairs going up on the right, at the end of the living room, but that was all I could see from the door way. The ceiling was pretty high, certainly more so than my own home, but that could of been just from my small perspective, seeing that I wasn't exactly a full-sized gryphon.
"(Like what you see, little guy?)" I heard a voice call. Turning my head, I realized I'd nearly forgotten White Thunder was even with me. I was too busy looking around, I guess. I shrugged, of course. My only real response at this point.
"(Sunny Skies, I'm home, and I've got someone you ought to meet!)" I heard White Thunder shout up the stair case, and I heard hoofsteps coming down from upstairs.
"(Don't you mean somepony, mother?") I heard a younger voice respond, in an accent that I could WILL swear had a hint of British in it.
"(Not exactly.)" White Thunder stated, as a Pegasus filly, as white as.. Well, White Thunder, and the yellow mane to match came downstairs. She looked to seem just as old as I was... Which, I actually didn't know at all, I hadn't even looked in a mirror yet. Add that to the list of things to do.
The young filly looked at me, a confused look on her face. You'd think she'd never seen a gryphon before, with the way ... No, Dammit, nevermind, that's probably true.
"(Who's that, mother?)" I heard the filly ask.
"Chirp, this is Sunny Skies. Sunny Skies, this is Chirp. Lovely Lights' (son.)" White Thunder introduced, making The same gestures as before, though at this point, I had a feeling of learning names.
"Lovely Lights? (But he's not a pony. How? )" Sunny skies questioned, though White Thunder only shrugged.
"(Long story. For now, I want you two well acquainted. He's going to end up a classmate of yours at some point, in the following few months.)" White Thunder had told the young filly, and with that she went towards what ( if the layout was exactly how I'd pictured ) I assumed to be the kitchen, probably to get something to eat after a day of working with a child.
Sunny Skies seemed interested, however, and came to inspect me. And sure enough, she seemed to be as tall as I was, though that didn't exactly mean we were the same in terms of age. She knew how to talk, it seemed, so we couldn't be too far apart( or she might have learned fast is all. I didn't even know my own age in this body.
"Hello, Chirp! I'm Sunny Skies. (Nice to...meet you)?" She introduced, extending her hoof to me, which I accepted by extending one of my forelegs? Probably a bad idea, but she'd be too young to be suspicious of me already knowing how to do a shake... Then again, she's the one who got the idea to initiate it, so unless she's a changeling-hunting agent, I have nothing to worry about. Speaking of which, did ponies even have changeling-hunting agents? Eh, it probably would be going a little overboard... But then again, (not-so-fictional) talking ponies.
Well, Sunny Skies beckoned me to follow her upstairs, which, with nothing else to do, really, I did. The stairs spiraled upwards, leading to a platform of sorts at the top. The ceiling was a bit lower here, however, which was probably to be expected, from how large the lower floor was.
Looking around, I saw that there were four rooms on second floor, two of which had doors, while the other two, which were across from each other, had open archways. Sunny Skies led me through the arch on the left which opened up into what was clearly a bedroom. There was a desk in the corner, which quartered a stack of paper, a pencil holder, and several books (one of them open), though I was unable to discern what kind they were. A bookshelf near the bed told me Sunny Skies was also an avid reader. Huh, just like me.
Several stuffed animals lined the base of the bed, which undoubtedly made this Sunny Skies' room. Wasn't as big as my collection though... I mean... Uh... All right, it's not my fault I kept nearly every toy I got when I was a kid, okay? And it's not my fault that I have eleven stuffed animals that I still cherish and don't plan on giving away in my lifetime... Forget that last part.
Just as with White Thunder, however, Sunny Skies' voice brought me back to reality. "(This is my room,) Chirp!" She exclaimed, to which I shrugged yet again. I tried thinking back to Lovely Light's room, but I couldn't remember at this point. My memory was never really good with long term.
Some things however, I never forget. Ever. Like.... I'll think of something.
"Year One, Day One."... What? Fancy Titles Are Best Titles...
In the following months, I continued with both my flight training and learning the Equestrian language. Writing wasn't too hard ( Even though I hated every minute of it. Screw hand writing), and although it was pretty runic, It still followed the algorithm that the English language did, where sounds translated to 'letters'. Speaking of writing, I could actually hold a pencil, compared to having to use my mouth.
I also ended up actually going with Lovely Lights on her little trips, once I found out that it was only that one night that she stayed overnight. Which took a while for me to figure out, considering I avoided her every time, once she started packing her bags.
I 'learned' about Princesses Celestia and Luna, and their control over the sun and moon. It wasn't really new info to me, of course, being a fan of the show.... which.... O' shite mate, I'm missing the rest of season six, right now, aren't I? Fuck me.
I ended up making friends with Sunny Skies, since I was at White Thunders'( who I'd figured out was actually a Wonderbolt) house pretty often. When I finally had flying down in order (I mean, good enough at least), the two of us would often race each other.
Naturally, I beat her by a mile every time, and followed up with a "gg ez" comment the daughter of a Wonderbolt would utterly, outclass me, having more training and more practice. So much for Gryphon master race.
Well, On the topic of learning, and getting to the present, This was the day I was due to start school. Lovely Lights was quick to purchase school supplies, and used the hiking pack she bought for me as bookbag. It wasn't fancy or anything, but... I'm sure the only 'fancy print' bags in Equestria were floral patterns.
"Chirp, are you ready? School starts in an hour." I heard Lovely Lights call from outside, and well, I wasn't ready. The books I had were still on the kitchen table, the pencils sitting next to them, and I wasn't dressed at all. Wait. I don't need clothes. Huh, not needing to get dressed would seriously cut down on preparation time.
"Coming!" I announced, before making haste to pack the bag in a ramshackle mess that only I'd be able to find stuff in. Taking the bag with me, I approached the door, just as Lovely Lights came inside, finished with watering the garden.
She smiled, and signaled for me to follow her out. Speaking of going out...
"Why do I have to go to school an hour early?" I asked, as we moved farther and farther away from the house.
"Because our house is on the edge of town. It's a thirty minute walk, unless you want to fly there-" Lovely Lights began, though I interrupted her in the middle of it..
"Then I'll fly, right?" I asked, spreading my wings and preparing to simply take off. Lovely Lights raised an eyebrow in concern however, and from that I knew the answer was no.
"I'm not about to let you fly off alone on your first day of school. Not to mention you don't even know the way. Maybe by next week, but until then, you're 'grounded'." She ordered, and I folded my wings in disappointment. Well, you can bet I'll be asking again next week. And the next week, and the next week, and the next week.... And the next week.... Or I could ask Sunny Skies to take me, since she was also attending the same school. That could work...
Speaking of Sunny Skies, she was just about the only filly or colt I really knew. I hadn't seen any others over the time is been here, besides the occasional passerby parent and child heading home. I wonder how they'd react to a gryphon? Oh goodie, I'm a major minority, sounds fun.
Sure enough, halfway through the walk, I found myself catching stares from the nearby ponies, and it made me feel uncomfortable. I mean, it's not like the ponies would hurt me or anything, because well, ponies, but the staring was unnerving. I'm black with ADHD, and even I didn't get this many stares in the real world. So do I call this Flying and Feathered Rain, or is it still chocolate? Actually, I'm still a black gryphon, though it's more of a charcoal rain with white coconut at the ends, now that I think about the different types of candies there are.... Why the hell am I trying to compare myself to a candy bar? Eh, it distracted me long enough to forget about the staring, and I could see what I assumed to be the school building in the distance, what with the parents and children waiting outside.
I was able to spot Sunny Skies outside as well, waving to me, though White Thunder was no where to be found. She must've gotten to school on her own, I guess. As we approached the school, many of the fillies and colts turned to look at me, and I began to get uncomfortable again, looking away from the stares. I overheard some of the parents at least telling the children not to stare, though I knew the majority was still watching. Indeed, this was definitely the first time most of them, even the parents, had seen a gryphon in person.
I stayed near Lovely Lights and Sunny Skies the whole time, until a pastel blue unicorn, with an orange/red mane that reminded me of Sunset Shimmer ( but the hairstyle was way off, this unicorn had her hair fashioned into a bun) approached the school building, at which the children, including Sunny skies, lined up at the door. I figured this was the teacher, but I didn't move. I just wanted to go back home, and fly for the rest of the day, away from the staring.
As the teacher unlocked the door, and the children flooded in, I felt a nudge pushing me towards the door.
"Go on, Chirp. I'll be here to pick you up after school." Lovely Lights assured me, to which I nodded, and slowly made my way inside. I mean, they were just kids, right? If anything went wrong, I suppose I could scathe them with my talons and flee..... wow, that's a dark and messed up thought... Being in Equestria, awesome. As a gryphon, even more awesome.... but this? I didn't like it. Probably was just the new school anxiety getting to me...
Looking around, the school looked just like the one in the show, in Ponyville. A long bookshelf sat in the corner near the door, full of books, most of which seemed to be for recreational reading. Made sense, since we had our own books. There were definitly more seats, however, and the school was much bigger, likely due to there being quite a few more children in it, almost like a full high school classroom.
Speaking of seats, I needed to find one. I looked around, and there were a few empty seats available. None of the available seats, however, and to my disappointment, were close to Sunny Skies, the only non-stranger around. Scanning the others, I decided to sit near the back, where I assumed I'd be a bit more isolated.
And that's the moment the teacher called me towards the front.
"Morning class, my name is Sunshine Leaf." The unicorn began, looking around the room. "I Know that many of you know that name by now, but at least one of you do not. We do have a new student we have joining us for the rest of the school year..." She told the students, some of which who looked around, likely not having seen me yet.
"Chirp, would you come to the front and introduce yourself?" Sunshine Leaf asked, looking to my direction. And before anyone says anything, I am absolutely shy from attention. Controversial, I know. I like the spotlight, and I try to grab it, but as soon as I get it..... Yeah... not what I was really aiming for.
I stayed in my seat, not wanting to move. The ponies in the room all turned to stare at me, however, recognizing by now that a gryphon they'd never seen before was in the room. Some of them smiled, some of the smirked. Some of them looked confused, and some of them waved.
"Chirp, would you please come to the front?" Sunshine Leaf asked again. She noticed the other ponies looking at me, and frowned. "Class, don't stare. It's rude... Chirp, would you at least stand up in your seat, and tell the class about yourself?"
I stood up, and well, I had to think. I actually didn't know a thing about myself in this body, other than my own name and adoptive family. Fortunatly, I'm a wonderfully good liar. So I began to say what came to my head.
"Hello... My name is Chirp... And I'm three years old... My mother is Lovely Lights... Nice to... Meet you?" I said, with a partial sense of confidence. Most of what I said was true, I guess. I didn't exactly want to mention anything about being found in the woods, or I'd be digging myself a ditch full of lies. A few of the children snickered when I said my name, but I thought nothing of it.
One of the children, a brown, male earth pony with orange hair (and come to think of it, one of those "some of them waved" kids.) , was all too happy to know my name. "Hey-a Chirp! My names Acoustic String, nice to meet you too!" He said, at a volume that wasn't quiteyelling, but it was still PRETTY LOUD
Alright call me as hypocrite, I used to be that kind of kid too, but hell, he was in the same row as me! Two seats over, in fact! Could you not speak like we were on separate sides of the entire room, top left corner to bottom right corner?
I think this is going to be a pretty fun first day of school, please pass the sarcasm shaker.
"Year One, Day Two." Because Day One Was So Horrible, That Maybe Just Saying That I Fell Asleep In Class All Day And Night, And Now This Is Day Two, Will Help Me Forget About It.
The classes weren't really interesting, just a bit of math, some history (which, while I would have loved to learn some extra history in Equestria, was more or less a recap on what I already knew from the show)
Remember how I said some of the classmates snickered when I mentioned my name? Yeah... So when recess came, I found out why: Some ponies are jerks, even children.
As I looked around for Sunny Skies, the only friend I had in this world, really, I was approached by an earth pony, and a group of his friends. This wasn't Acoustic String, however. No, this kid was light green, and his hair was a shade of brown-orange that one could realistically see on a human. And he didn't look like he wanted to have a friendly talk.
"So your name is Chirp, huh? Did mommy name you that 'cause you look like some weird bird thing?" He said, in that same semi-British accent that I heard from Sunny Skies.
"Bird?" I asked, not knowing what he meant. My name was my name, wasn't it? Oh... Shit... I didn't know many (Equestrian)onomatopoeias, and beyond ducks, I wasn't taught any for birds. Oh goodie, my name is one of those, isn't it?
"Yeah! Bird. Like you. Do you make Chirp sounds? Can you go (Quack)? Quack? Quack? Tweet? Tweet?" He joked, and soon enough, the troupe that came with him started to do the same. They were childish insults, and I knew it, but I had a history of not taking well to jokes concerning my name. And the nicknames always stuck. It's things like this that I hate.
A few minutes passed, and I started to wonder if anypony would notice if I ripped a few throats out with my razor sharp beak, until a familiar voice rang out.
" Cut it out, Sour Dough!" Sunny Skies yelled, as she, quite literally, came down from above, charging the earth pony, an act that, really, even I was shocked by. The other ponies backed off, likely not wanting to be the next on the list of ponies getting knocked to the ground.
Sour Dough, however, got up, a look of contempt in his eyes. "Oh goodie, so you're friends. Guess Birdie here needs his little filly in shining armor. "He said, as a few light scrapes on his face started to bleed.
"You never back off, do you? Name insults, Sour? Your name is a type of bread, should I call you 'toasted'? Apologize.. Now. " Sunny Skies continued. I hadn't seen this side to her...
"Oh, alllllright, if you insist." Sour Dough mocked, before walking up to me. "Sowweeee" he said, though he clearly didn't mean it.
"(You're a fucking shitty ass son-of-a-bitch), Sour Dough." I told him, loud enough for only him to hear, making him narrow his eyes in confusion.
"Wait, huh?" He said, Unable to understand.
"(English best language twenty-sixteen. GG EZ.) " I said this time, making him even more confused. How wonderful it is to be fluent in two languages, one of which doesn't even exist in this world!
"Can you say that slower..." He requested,, and he sounded like he was genuinely asking. Huehuehue.
"(Prezent yer arze to me, fer I know ye' like it up the poopdeck, ye' landlubber)!”... Okay, maybe I went a little overboard (you know, like a pirate who just angered his captain) . I mean, really? GG EZ? In a spoken conversation? No, the other insults were completely sensible, and well deserved.
Sour Dough eventually walked off, tired of not being able to understand the words I was saying. Technically, that means I win the insult-slinging match, right? All hail Chirp.... Alright, now even I don't like my name. That was awful. Well... I'm good at making up random, exotic names, so let's get to that... after school of course...
Recess was called inside pretty soon after the little scuffle, and I could overhear Sour Dough explaining his injuries to the teacher.
"Sunny Skies came out of the sky and hit me for no reason!" I heard him say in his defense, though Sunshine Leaf... Wasn't buying any of it.
"From what I witnessed, it wasn't without reason. When I get inside, I'll be sure to give you some bandages. And your parents will be notifiied, both yours and Sunny Skies'. " Sunshine Leaf informed Sour Dough, as he hung his head in defeat. Well, I hope he's solved for now.
Sunshine Leaf, however, beckoned me over to the door. Yay....
"Would you like to say something, Chirp? I could see, but I couldn't hear what was going on. " She asked, and I glanced downwards, wondering if Sunny Skies would get in trouble for intervening.
"Sour Dough was making fun of my name... And I didn't like it. He and his crew just kept following me, until Sunny Skies came around..." I told Sunshine Leaf, and she nodded in response.
"All right, then. If this happens again, could you at least come talk to me as soon as it start? I don't want any fighting to break out." She asked, to which it was my turn to nod. Right. Probably should of just said something in the first place, really. Actually, naw, I'm glad that asshat got beat, and I hope he gets beat even more when his momma find out.
As I went inside, I noticed some of the fillies and colts packing up. I guess dismissal is right after recess, then, huh? Made sense, I suppose. I packed my things as well, before making my way to the door where the children were beginning to line up.
After a few minutes, once all the ponies were lined up and ready, the door opened once again, and I could (sorta...) recognize a few mares and stallions from earlier this morning. I could see Sour Dough rushing to who I assumed was his mother, urging her to leave quickly, Though Sunshine Leaf was quick to call her over before that could happen. Sucker.
Lovely Lights was waiting outside, too, and she waved me over to her, to which I waved back, and approached her.
"So, How was the first day?" Lovely Lights asked, smiling as we started the walk home.
"Bad," I stated plainly. " One of the colts teased me during recess." I told her.
"How so? It's hard to tease when you have nothing to go on. They don't even know you." She asked, her smile fading.
" Why would you name me after a sound? A bird sound, even?" I questioned, stopping in the middle of the road.
"Oh... well, I didn't know any gryphon naming customs, and I didn't think it would be right to give you a pony name. So I went with something simple..." she admitted, after figuring out what went on.
"Could I... change it?" I asked. From where we were we could see the clock tower, where the town hall was. Would be a simple task to stop by on the way home.
"Hmm...." Lovely Lights began, thinkning. "Generally, a pony is allowed to change their name after they get a Cutie Mark.... however...... I don't know about gryphons." She said, which... kinda cleared up a bit of information missing from the show. If this was even the same Equestria.
"I'll tell you what," Lovely lights began, to which I listened. " Tomorrow I'll see about getting your name changed, even if its over a simple thing as namecalling. In the meantime, We'll need to get to the library to find something about gryphon names. Maybe by next week, we'll have something to work on." She assured, to which I nodded, And we continued the uneventful walk home.
So while we walk home... Hmmmm.... Jaraltri.... Ghandritol..... Alequai.... Deishtrotem... Ikandramungr.... Yeah.... None of those. I'm not a demon.
Library ( Also known as, the shortest Chapter title in the story. Wait, nevermind)
I took my position, just outside the library. I was here to make a visit, yet I was not here to read.... well, not to stay and do so, that is.. A certain book, however, did have my eye.
I signaled the King's Talons ordered to guard me to stop at the entrance, before making my way inside, alone. The librarian I was here to visit was a gryphon that I'd trust with my own life, even without a royal position akin to that of a personal guard.
I hailed the elderly gryphoness who sat behind the library's front desk, dipping my head in respect.
"Prince Alevrus? What brings you here, mi'lord?" The old gryphoness asked, attempting to bow, even with her frail bones. I stopped her, knowing her venerability myself. No more than twelve years ago, said bow would have been accompanied by a nuzzle on my forehead, followed by the then (relatively) young gryphoness escorting me, a young child, through the massive building. Now I was fifteen years of age, and it was no longer appropriate to show such affection.
"No need, Taltria. You're too old to be bowing to royalty." I informed her, as I made my way towards her desk.
" Ah, you're a good boy, Alevrus. I'm sorry to hear how your father is doing. He's supposed to be younger than myself, but it seems that fate has decided otherwise..." Taltria told me, her face decaying into sadness.
"He's been a great leader Taltria, but all leaders fall... he still has time, but it won't be long now. It's unfortunate how soon it's come, but if my father is willing to give me the crown in the wake of his death, I am ready." I assured her, staying confident myself.
It is true that my father, King Antrius, has fallen terribly ill in the last few weeks. The doctors don't know what the cause is, and the castle servants have run amok, wondering if poison is the cause. The guard have been on high alert, pushing their efforts to protect me, my mother, and the castle in the wake of all this. I left today because I couldn't stand it anymore.
"Right you are, my prince. You've grown in all these years, and you should remember that. " Taltria told me, and I simply nodded.
"Yes, but that isn't the reason I've come. I'm here for a book. The same one from when I was a child. I want it, please." I asked the librarian, and she raised her brow at my request.
"You mean the tale of Hearth's Warming Eve? You know that tale is a children's story, right? And for Equestrians." She questioned, to which I nodded.
"Yes, Taltria. A foal's story. But I'm not a child anymore. I know for a fact, however, that the story is true. And there's a lot of information that can be derived from it. Things I've yet to figure out, but I know are out there: Secrets. Answers. Mysteries, all hidden in the text.... " I began, becoming sterner as I went on.
"It may be a child's story, but I need that book, Taltria. I won't ask again."
Taltria stepped back, her eyes growing wide. " I.... why are you... It's in section B-374, under Equestrian Tales, sir... you may have the book."
"Good. Thank you." I told her, before making way to the section Taltria stated. It was easy enough to find the book, and to get it off the shelf.
Hearth's Warming Eve: A Foal's Tale of the Birth of Equestria. My favorite childhood story. My father would bring me here every day, to teach me history and reading. And we'd end every day with this same old book, that I picked out every day, every time. My father was proud, and hoped one day I'd be well informed with equestrian history, and would become a perfect king to have as a trade ally to them.
Back then, maybe. But now? That wasn't exactly my goal. I opened the book, and began reading. I knew the story like the back of my talons, but I read it anyways.
I already knew the synopsis of the story:
Before the time of Celestia or Luna, equestria was split into three tribes: the Unicorns, the Earth Ponies, and the Pegasi. The Earth Ponies grew large surplus of food, of which for in return for bringing good weather, the Pegasi wanted a portion, and the Unicorns wanted payment for bringing about night and day with their magic. The Earth Ponies, feeling pressured into giving up more than they had, refused, which brought a lot of hate between all of the tribes.
In time, a new land was found, unclaimed by any tribes, of which they all wanted. The Earth Ponies, Pegasi, and Unicorns all sent their delegates, which included their leaders, and servants. Upon finding the land, they yet again were unable to agree upon settlement, after which snow began to fall heavily, though with no foreseen source. After retreating to a cave together, the tribes leaders began to fight among themselves, alone, with even more ferocity, after which the source of the snowstorm was revealed: Windigos, Ice Spirits that fed off of hate, who promptly froze the tribal leaders, as well as started to encrust the entire cave in ice.
Their servants, who were also in danger of being frozen, met at the center, accepting their fate, while also declaring their acceptance of one another. And like poison to the windigos, their acceptance unfroze the leaders, and drove the windigoes away.
In honor of how the three tribes ceasing hatred of one another, the leaders claimed they would live off the land together, and in harmony, naming the land 'Equestria', and vowing to help one another.
It's almost too good to be true. On the brink of war itself, simple servants acted as diplomats to end the coming conflict. I didn't care about the ending, however.
No... my concern was with a single line that is stated near the beginning: Before the time of Celestia and Luna.
At some point, the moon and sun were controlled by unicorns, which implied one thing.
The two rulers of the neighboring kingdom of Equestria.... Were disposable.
I took the book with me, and left the library, and back towards the castle.
When I become king, my first order will be to find whatever spell allowed unicorns to control day and night...
What in Tartarus... (there's no stupid secondary chapter this time. Unless this counts.)
I woke from my slumber with a start, my eyes wide open with surprise. I looked out the window from the couch upon which I slept, seeing that it was morning, the darkened light of the gradient dusk sky just slightly coming through the linen blinds.
I've had strange dreams.... but hell, at least they made a lick of sense. And I certainly didn't remember them clearly when I woke up. This dream, however, I recalled vividly: The elderly gryphon hen, the fact that 'I' was royalty... even the unspoken things of which I 'knew'. Even as a human, it was very hard to remeber the events in my dreams. Was this one different?
"Must of been nothing..." I told myself, before looking around the house. It must of just been that we'd gone to the library yesterday? That would vaguely justify the dream, right? That's the only way that I felt I could picture it.
My ears perked at the sound of my talons and paws hitting the carpet floor of Lovely Lights' home, and from the silence, save some singing birds,I quickly figured that Lovely Lights wasn't awake yet, or at least being particularly quiet in an attempt to not wake me yet... Go figure, it was probably, what, the Equestrian equivalent of five AM? If I yelled, I'd probably more likely wake than startle anybody.... ( *slap* no. Bad thoughts. Do not wake the entire damned town).
Seeing I was awake, and didn't have anything else much to do, I walked over to the fridge. I was thirsty, and I was hungry. Pulling it open was still after all this time an unexpected challenge, considering my size and physical age. It's like when you go to the fridge and tug the door very lighly, because you honestly can't believe that you are too weak to open a fridge, but then you underestimate how much force you need to pull it open, and you are stuck there for about half a second wondering why you can't open the fridge. Like that, only worse because you actually are weaker than you are used to being.
Regardless, it proved simple to open the fridge, which contained an assortment of fruits and vegetables. And very few select choices of meats, mostly cooked, though there were some raw meats inside. Raw meat, I found, was pretty nice. You can usually guarantee it fresh, provided it's refrigerated. Or provided you make the kill yourself. Which I've managed to do with quite a few rabbits and wild birds. Oh yes, great thing about being a gryphon is you can catch birds. They'll always fly up because instincts tell them you are likley a land predator if you pounce them from the ground. And then you prove them wrong.
I swiped off the legs of a raw chicken (the best part, in my opinion, even when I was back on earth.) before heading outside. I wasn't supposed to eat raw meat in the house. Cooked meat was fine, but ever since I started to occasionally hunt my own food, Lovely Lights placed a bar on eating anything inside that didn't have the 'red liquids'( as in either mytogoblin or blood. It didn't matter which) dried out of it.
I looked around the town, or at least what I could see from where I was. We lived on the last stretch of the town, in the last group of houses before leading to the path that went towards Horseshoe Mountain Woods, the name of the place where I'd first encountered Lovely Lights. Maybe one or two buildings were closer to the woods than us, but those were off to the side for the most part.
In any event, I could barely see anything anyways. The sky was gradually getting lighter from beyond the woods as I finished my meal. My thoughts cameback to the dream... of which I still remembered clearly. The memories felt real, as if I truly was there at that instant. As if it was me in that dream, being referred to as Prince Alevrus... Prince Alevrus Ironbeak...I never heard, I just knew.
The stirring of sound in the house snapped me out of my thoughts, and I peeked my ears to hear. It seemed that Lovely Lights had awoken, and was likely on her way downstairs to wake me. She'd find me alreadyawake, however. Though I decided to spare her the calling of my name, and went back inside, tossing the bones of the chicken into the trash bin.
"Oh... Chirp..." She hesitantly began, having understood my earlier desire to change my name. Which I still, of course, intended on doing. We already went to the library yesterday, even. "You're already awake, then? How long have you been up?" She asked, before heading to the fridge and using her magic to open the door.
I nodded, as I tried to measure how long it's been. "About twenty or thirty minutes? I also already ate. " I informed her, closing the front door behind me. "Yes.... I can see that..." Lovely Lights noted, as she looked in the fridge, having likely seen the now leg-less chicken.
"So have you picked out something? For a name, I mean?" Lovely Lights asked, eyeing the book on the kitchen table. The book we had rented from the library was sitting there, still open from when I'd looked over it last night. It was filled with quite a bit of information concerning traditional gryphons, though mainly focused on naming procedures. Gryphons apparently would typically have Romanesque first names (ending is -us for males, -ia for female), followed by a last name that was what I could describe, at best, as a Warriors-styled name, though almost always centered around avian qualities. And last names weren't hereditary, either. They were something to be earned. It was certainly unique. Kind of. Which is bullshit, I'm still going to give my self my own last name.
Of course, I wanted my name to be unique as well. If I was going to go by a different name, I was at least going to be creative with it. And so, what better thing to do than to make one up yourself? In my own opinion at least, I always came up with good names for my video game toons, and I don't mean names like 'roflbeartank' or 'kittydeeps'. I'm an avid role player who would be ashamed of even rping with someone ELSE who had that as their in-game name.
So that left me with one thing to do, make up a name. As in, I hadn't decided yet... "I'm still... thinking about it?" I answered slowly. I wasn't going to tell her I was planning to make it up, or she'd think I was crazy. Or she'd d at least assume that I would think of something stupid. And I'd like to note I'm only slightly crazy at most. Then again, I was contemplating using the same process I used to make video game names on making a name I'd actually be stuck with...
"Are you sure you don't want me to pick one for you?" She ventured, to which I shook my head. I'd kinda already forbidden her to even look in the book, after having her looking over my shoulders for an hour-and-a-half straight trying to help me pick out a name from it, going 'Oh, that one sounds noble.' or 'Are you having trouble? What about that one?'. Like seriously, shut the hell up, I can't even think.
" No, I can pick my own name." I insisted, skimming the pages, not really even reading the names. Anything to make it seem like I was looking. Eventually I decided on something.
"Anninnicus." I declared, closing the book. "Anninnicus Whitetalon." ..... I swear, I'm not fucking crazy.
"An... nin.. " Lovely Lights tried to pronounce, before trotting over to the book. I was done with it anyways. I felt pretty proud of myself, really. Maybe I should of done something easier to pronounce like..... Taladrius... No, Taladrimus... Taladrimus Blackfang. Yes. Yes, yes yes. No. No no.
"You mean..." She started, flipping through the A section of the book. "Chi-... I mean... That first name, not in the book at all." She told me, obviously utterly confused.
Implying the last name I offered was already taken? "Fine, Anninnicus Ravenfury." I instead offered. My god I'm such a troll.
"... That's... not the first... Chirp, that name isn't anywhere in the book at all. Can't you pick something a lot more... Easier to pronounce?" She asked, her voice betraying a hint of annoyance.
"Ranimialatrius, then. That's my second choice. Or Gallamandriatus." I said plainly, causing her expression to change into one that I couldn't call anything other than absolute disgust. Best thing about having a beak is you can't exactly smile without opening it. Then again, also means your expression is permantly stuck to the lines of your beak, and whatever you can do with your eyes. And I was a frowny beak. I see so many non-gryphon friends in my future...
"Spell it," Lovely Lights requested, catching me off guard. "Spell the name." She asked, to which I ended up finding out the flaw in my strategy. I could easily spending a good portion of ten minutes on whether to use one a or two, and other phonetics, when I made the names I did.
"Well..." I began, trying to piece together the names I thought up. "Anninnicus... A...n... n... i... n... n... i... c u s." I listed, somewhat nervously, trying to disguise the pauses as simple breaks. Jesus Christ, that was consonant hell. "And thus shall be how one should spell... Anninnicus." I declared. Is it obvious yet that I'm the type of guy who reads dictionaries?
I counted about 20 seconds of absolute silence from Lovely Lights. I dunno, did I break her brain? .exe has stopped working, I guess.
"I... wha-... fine. Anninnicus Ravenfury it is... though I'd prefer if you'd change your mind by the time school is out... but if that's what you want, I suppose it'll do... " She finally admitted. "But I hope you remember you're still Chirp until the days over. Now go get ready for school." she reminded me, to which I shrugged.
"Right. I will, don't worry." I answered, before heading upstairs.
Exit Chirp, enter Ravenfury.
Day three, mistakes were made. ( It's really day two, but lets not get carried away, darling.)
It didn’t take me that long to get ready... Actually, that just might be a lie. I ‘simply’ had to wash my fur in the shower upstairs (one of another few things I started to tell Lovely Lights to back the hell off on.) . And my feathers... And my...come to think of it, it’s really awkward when you have multiple types of... I really don’t know what to call it. But hell, I had everything. From the black fur covering the lower half of my body to the jet black tuft at the end of my tail, and to the base of my black wings, from the jet black feathers that came up from my chest overlapping my fur, all the way up to my curved white beak, and down the white talons that started from what I could best describe as my forearm. What the heck do you even call what that’s made out of?
Easy enough, right? I looked around, noting the mane shampoo outside of the glass chamber. I made the decision long ago not to soak the feathers from the chest up in soap meant for an entirely different ‘hair’ type. I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t end well, probably with my head looking spiky, with feathers jutting out in an absolutely unsightly manner.. Soap would do for me. At least it’s just..... Soap. I was still light on applying it to my feathers, as my experiences with washing feathers were obviously limited from my previous life. I felt like it would never feel any less alien.
The feathers on my wings, however, were of a different layout, and half as thick, and the shampoo worked well enough on those. The fact I even had wings that I had to wash still felt strange. Two extra appendages is a lot when you are only used to having four. And don’t get my started on tails. If I was sent here as a pony, it might have been so much easier. Instead of just an extra long piece of hair extending up and over my backend, I had a long, somewhat thin piece of flesh, covered in hair, ending in the most leaky paint brush I’ve ever had the displeasure of using. (Speaking of paint, remind me to never pretend to be a Smeargle whenever I so much as look at a jar of paint. Twenty bucks says, if it dries, it’s going to be harder to get off than on fingers... Oh dear mother of god, contact cement on fur, even, what about that? Yet another experiment on the list of 'do not try ever under any circumstances forever until the end of time not on your life not for a million dollars')
And I swear, just looking at it gave me some form of OCD, because I couldn’t stop trying to make the tip taper to a point or some shit like that. And after I finally did that, I’d look at it each time and think to myself ‘that’s just not right..’ and be at it all over again. I’ll likely develop a degree of insanity if I don’t get my paws on some hair gel. Or maybe I’m overreacting.
At least my talons and beak sort of felt familiar, but just barely, and mind you, they made up a fraction of my entire body. It felt strange rubbing my talons against each other, and my beak... I was basically washing what replaced my mouth and nose. You tell me how that feels. I clicked my talons a few times, trying to see if I could make a snapping sound, like with fingers, but I had little success.
So in reality, it may of taken me all of twenty minutes to be done with the shower, after which I had to brush my teeth. Because apparently gryphons have teeth and beaks, which makes no sense. Of course, I was in a world where I’ve literally been placed in the body of a gryphon less than a seventh of my actual age, and sent to a world where the population is dominated by magic horses. I can’t even say ‘Hey, I’m a pony in a pony world, so at least THAT makes sense, right?’. Nope, I’m still an uncommon occurrence, even in a supposedly fictional setting. Yes, the sensible meter is totally still in the green zone. Considering all things up to recently, maybe it really does make sense.
Well, 22 minutes and counting, but I was done cleaning myself up, though my wings were still quite damp, as I wasn’t exactly all too comfortable with drying them thoroughly. There’s a certain abhorrence you attain from the combination of sharp claws and soft towels that just makes you feel a quite bit tender in...certain areas. I could lie down on a towel to dry my belly and crotch, at least, but for wings, there were quite fragile bones that definitly didn’t appreciate that sort of route, and It felt almost as bad as trying to plank while naked. Certain ‘things’ felt squashed, which, thanks to gryphon anatomy, I didn’t actually have to deal with anymore. Most of the time, at least.
So when it came time for me to open the door, Lovely Lights was obviously waiting patiently for her turn, and she immediately snatched the towel I was using from off the floor with her magic. " Your wings are still wet. Again.” she noted, levitating the towel towards me.
“Well, I told you that these things hurt,” I replied, raising my right talon, half-heartedly attempting yet again to snap a few times. Lovely Lights merely shook her head.
“And I told you that you can always ask for help with showering. It’s not like you are an adult yet, you know.”
Oh no you didn't, lady. " Well maybe I’m trying as hard as I can to grow up fast? " I argued. I did not enjoy when Lovely Lights decided to play the age card on me. I was probably old enough to be her brother. Or cousin, at the very least. Was already the main reason why I rarely referred to her as ‘mother’. That, and perhaps I was afraid the word would make me homesick.
“In any event, I don’t like it when you feel you can do everything yourself. You know, even some adult pegasi have trouble with maintaining their wings.” She started, beginning to gently towel me off. " Just ask White Thunder. Way I hear it, she goes to a spa and salon once a month. And she’s a Wonderbolt, I reckon she’d had at least a bit of training on proper wing care.” She told me, just as she finished drying off my right wing, and the towel shifted to my left.
“Well I’m not a Pegasus, now am I? And besides, once a month? She obviously knows how to dry her own wings, so why can’t you try and let me do it？” I complained, though I started to see she was right. Ponies can’t do everything on their own. Well, at least most of the fan fiction I read back on earth claimed non-unicorns have a very hard time washing their backs... But god damn, this was basically the real deal.
Lovely Lights frowned, and spoke again. “And I certainly dont like when you talk back to me like that. And I can also see that you are trying, but I can also see that you are failing at it.” She informed me, as she finally finished drying my wings. I’m going to need to find some aloe for these burns. “Sometimes, you just need help. Just don’t forget that, okay?” She ended with a smile, before disappearing into the bathroom.
• • •
I told Lovely Lights I wanted to fly to school with White Thunder and Sunny Skies. Perhaps my boldest move since coming here. She took it well, at least, and escorted me the ways over to their home, though Lovely Lights didn't want to knock. Instead, she sat me down near a shrub just out of the way of the door and looked at me sternly. “You’ll wait here until they come out, and you won’t move from this spot, unless it’s back home. Or you’re really grounded.” She instructed me. Oh goodie, prison. Though that’s not what I was really thinking at the moment.
“Isn’t this a little dangerous?” I asked. I was really questioning the idea of somepony who’d leave a child unattended.
“I am happy that you are worried.” Lovely Lights replied, relaxing her expression. " Buckston is a good town, however, and it’s been many, many years since anything serious has happened. I’m also pretty sure you’re close enough to have everypony come rushing out if you so much as speak a little loudly. Other than that, I truly mean it. Don’t leave this spot.”
Right, this was Equestria of all places. It’s probably not as perfect as in the show, but its probably not bad in the slightest. And Lovely Lights was right, I’ll be sure to scream loudly if some stranger so much as looks at me funny... Right after I see how much genital mutilation these talons can do to the idiot who does that exact same thing. Sadism is ~~~fun~~~.
“... Anninnicus? Did you hear me? Do you understand?” Lovely Lights lights questioned, snapping me back to reality. “I’m not leaving until you do.”
“Oh. Yes, I yell if I see somepony acting strange, and don’t move from here.” I summarized from earlier. Lovely Lights nodded, and then turned to leave, glancing back a few times, and I laid back against the house, and started humming tunes.
And then it hit me that I’d never be able to listen to YouTube again. Fuck. Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck. FUCK. I tried to remember the lyrics and tunes of a few of my favorite songs, and started to sing quietly, just to make sure I remembered the ones I liked.
“Covered, in dirt and mud, aching and spitting blood, cursing, you stir to rise and groan...” I started, just singing the first few lines of every single song they came to my head.
“I am one sword out of many, I am one face out of three... No, no way I’m forgetting that... Holy fuck I’ll never be able to listen, though...”
“It is not too late, it’s our home, so don’t say that it’s fate...”
I kept rattling off a few songs, to their full lyrics. Not like any pony around me would understand me, however..
I did of course have the sense to go back to Equestrian before I forgot what language I supposed to be speaking. Then I had an idea.
“I wonder how wrong it would be if I put some of these songs into Equestrian and wrote em off as my creation... " I wondered. Oh it would be wrong all right, but definitely would be a sure way to remember them. Remind me to get a dictionary so I can translate these songs...
A while later, I hear the door fly open, and I legitimately was scared for a moment there. Sure enough, White Thunder and Sunny Skies were flying out the door. Jesus, they must of been flying all morning to be that quiet. Or they had thick walls. Actually, with those two, maybe both.
And I was about to miss them. “Wait!” I shouted, just loud enough for them to hear. Sunny Skies was the first to turn around. " Oh, mother, it’s Chirp!” She exclaimed, landing just as fast as she’d taken off. " Hey, Chirp, what’s you here for? Lovely not takin’ ya?” She asked, looking up to White Thunder, who looked around, before shaking her head.
“No, I asked her if I could fly with you to school. And it’s Anninnicus Ravenfury now. I mean, not officially. But it is.” I proudly stated.
“Anninnicus, huh? Well, Anninnicus, let’s just see if you can keep up, then.” She challenged, before dashing back into the sky,waving her beckoning at me with her hoof to follow. Of course Sunny Skies would get the name perfectly on the first try. She was all too much like that, I suppose.
I spread my own wings and took to the sky after her, steadily getting up to their position, maybe a story or so above the houses. “So... maybe I really don’t know the exact way to get to the school from here...” I told the two of them. I wasn’t exactly paying attention on the way to the school. Namely, I was busy wondering if ponies were as racist and xenophobic as they were in the Chess Game of the Gods-verse. Because that was obviously a goooood representation of Equestria. The staring was more or less likely due to the fact they’d never seen me before.
“You mean to tell me you don’t recognize that big red building way over to the left? It’s kind of hard to miss with the big bell.” She asked, pointing towards a red building in the distance. And it certainly looked like a school house. Maybe I should try looking around before talking.
" Well I've only gone once, and I wasn't really taking note..." I admitted.
"Well any case, here's a chance now. How's a race sound?" Sunny Skies offered, to which I frowned. I absolutely did not compare to her in the slightest, even when she proclaimed to be 'going easy' on me. Her definition of easy was a slow-going speed of very fast, divided by fast. Sunny Skies definitely saw my reaction, however. " Ah c'mon, You get some practice, you'll get faster, right?" She argued, but I wasn't hearing any of her side.
"Still sucks to lose every time. " I bitterly stated.
"Well I hope you two are done, now," I heard White Thunder call, casually drifting away from us, on her back. "Because school's goin' to start without you two if ya stay there." She said, gesturing back towards the school behind her.
"Coming mother!" Sunny Skies called back, before flying after White Thunder. Holy balls, how long was I outside singing? I was pretty sure it was at least an hour and a half until school started at the time I arrived at their home. Was school really about to start?
I suppose that was my cue to get moving, so I sped ahead to catch up to them, and the three of us flew at a steady pace towards the school. We flew by a few other pegasi ponies, probably off to work, and I could very well see many earth ponies and unicorns on the ground. I tried to see if I recognized any of them from my class, but there were none of them I could pinpoint for sure. After a while I simply gave up and tried to enjoy the flight.
It was all of 15 minutes to get to the school, give or take, without any buildings blocking the way. The first thing I noticed was Sour Dough. Oh goodie.
"Well I suppose I'll see the two of you after school, unless Lovely comes and takes you, Ch-er... Anninnicus. I've got Cloud-busting work to do. And no fighting. Either of you. " White Thunder told us, before heading off.
And the moment the two of us had landed, Sour Dough decided to step forward. "So the bird decided he couldn't come back without his filly in shining armor escorting him?" I heard Sourdough begin to tease, before Sunny Skies started to step in. This kid didn't learn from last time, did he?
Regardless, I was done letting Sunny Skies fight my battles, even after one time. "Sunny, wait. " I told her, before looking around. Sunshine Leaf, our teacher, wasn't here yet. And there weren't too many students this early. Just a few parents, and maybe three other children around.
"Perfect." I muttered under my breath, before narrowing my eyes, stepping forward towards Sour Dough. " First, it's Anninnicus, now. Anninnicus Ravenfury. You will address me as such." I demanded, though Sour Dough didn't seem fazed.
I stepped closer, and began to speak low enough for him to barely hear. "Second. I want you to remember who's above who on the food chain. If it weren't for the fact you could talk, I'd see no difference 'tween you, or the next rabbit that crosses my way. I want you to remember that every time you so much as look at me the wrong way." I advised him. Maybe it was a little much. But fuck it, this ass needed to stop. What better way than intimidation? Intimidation is a wonderful thing, is it not?
That last statement seemed to do the trick, as Sour Dough went wide eyed with shock and began to back away. "I-I..I...I'm t-telling! I'm telling Miss Sunshine Leaf what you said!" he claimed, trying (and failing) to hold a straight face.
"Go ahead. Then I'll already be in trouble. I won't get into any when I make my move." I told him, still boring my gaze into him. On the other hand, if he didn't take my bluff, I was beyond dead. Pretty sure threatening to eat somepony was way up there with the 'prison for life or worse' list of crimes. Also pretty sure the 'I'm just a kid' excuse won't work in that scenario.
With that I stepped away, back to where Sunny Skies had landed, leaving Sour literally back against the wall. It was clear that no pony had heard what I'd told Sour Dough. If they weren't required for me to stand, I would of been crossing my talons, dreadfully hoping he wouldn't say anything. Perhaps I took things a little too far.
"What did you do to him?" Sunny Skies inquired, her eyes showing concern, as if accusing me of hurting him. To which I raised one of my talons.
"I swear, I didn't do anything to him. Though I might have said... things. Maybe a few threats..." I admitted, looking back to the green earth pony, who still stared at me, frozen in fear, with the most grim expression on his face. You'd think I was a titan from Shengeki No Kyojin. And while nopony had heard our conversation, they were definitely starting to notice the way he looked.
"And what did you SAY to him?" Sunny Skies asked, her expression now one of disbelief. "Anninnicus, you don't just threaten anypony who teases you, find another way to deal with it!" She scolded me, though I couldn't help but let out a chuckle.
"Didn't seem to be your opinion on that matter yesterday." I stated, trying to remind her of what happened the day before.
"Yes, and I got in trouble for that, and all I did was knock him over a little hard. Mother tells me if an incident like that happens again, I'll be grounded for the year. " she informed, making me start to feel a little guilty. Definitely took things too far, considering these were children I was dealing with.
"Well, I suppose I should go and apologize." I openly decided, before turning around to face him yet again.