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Windy Winters can't escape his past

Jun 25th, 2018 (edited)
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  1. An unauthorized spinoff of this great CYOA story from 4chan.org/mlp/SPG:
  2. https://pastebin.com/FJiLSTHN
  3.  
  4. >>32557580
  5. I would adopt (buy) Windy Winters: that pegasus stallion who helped attack Mocha and was sold to Gregory the trainer. He wants to do the right thing, he's just not always sure what that is. He seems impulsive, but easily led. I would be relaxed with him, let him fly around the back 40 and over to the neighbors and such, but he would always wear his tracking collar. Almost always.
  6.  
  7. >"Hey 'Non, can you have a look a this collar? It's flopping around when I run."
  8. "Hmmm, looks like the strap is wearing out! Guess not even chain mesh lasts forever, I'll order up another. C'mon inside, let's get that off of you."
  9. >You lock the back door, dig the 'Pony Stuff' box out of the attic, and find the wingbinders that Windy came from Gregories Slave School with. He's only grown a little bit since, they should still fit fine.
  10. >"Hey, where in Tartarus did those come from?!" You slip your fingers through his collar and hold him while you secure the first wing. Lucky you noticed: that really is loose!
  11. "They came from the same place your halter, lead rope, hobbles, and whip went. Good thing they're nylon, leather would have cracked to pieces by now!"
  12. >"Non! We’re partners. I don't need that junk!"
  13. >You switch hands, and move to his other side. Windy is trying to be a good boy, but he feels a bit panicked and flighty under your touch. His other wing extends and starts flapping wildly. You release him and he clatters across the kitchen. He tries to hop up on the table but forgets about the bound wing, and falls hard on his side! His hooves scrabble frantically on the smooth hardwood floor...
  14. "Windy!"
  15. >You rush over and push on his shoulder, gently pinning him down, and he quietens. Then you slide your hands underneath, lift, and stand him up on the table yourself. Most pegasi like Windy feel more comfortable and confident when they can at least look a taller human straight in the eye. He's already upset, no need for you to loom over him too. Most of your serious conversations happen in the kitchen for just this reason.
  16. "Windy. Don't worry about this. You won't have to sleep with those 'binders on, you can be chained to the bed overnight. I'll order up a new tracking collar today, and it will be here before the week is out. You'll be flying free again before you know it.
  17. >"CHAINED to the BED?!" His ears fold back against his neck, his tail clamps down, and his wings snap out in an intimidation display, instinctively trying to make himself look bigger. The effect is spoiled with only the one wing, but you're not cruel enough to laugh. Really: you're very careful to not even smirk, and hold the worried frown on your face instead.
  18. "Well, I don't trust that collar anymore Windy. Look at it: it's falling apart. You know I'm always willing to work with you on these things. Your comfort is important to me too! Do you want me to put a lock back on your door instead, just for the few days?"
  19. >Windy just looks at you for a moment, really looks into your eyes. His own are glistening, like he's fighting back tears. "It's not about 'trusting the collar', it's about trusting ME. What do you think I'm going to do, run away? Do you think I would hurt you if you weren't holding your finger over the shock button?! You know me, 'Non! I've never given you any trouble in all the time I've been here. Now you're tying me up like some fresh-caught from the portal. What gives?"
  20. >The old 'Pony Stuff' box also has a looseleaf binder holding all of Windys paperwork, except for the ownership certificate at the bank. Gregory didn't just sell raw meat, every graduate came with everything there was to know: The 'Windy Winters:' photo and blurb that first caught your eye... Training records...  Performance scores... A white 'Third Best In Show' ribbon from his brief career as a showpony (so cute!)... State registration... FAA flight authorization... Veterinary report (he's overdue)... And a full history back to his capture in Equestria.
  21. "You HAVE always been a good pony for me, and I've tried to be a good master for you, but I'm not your first master am I Windy?"
  22. >"That was a long time ago 'Non..." His head lowers, and his free wing droops down to the table. The other stays strapped to his barrel, of course.
  23. "I don't think you would do anything, if given the chance, but why take that chance?"
  24. >You flip over to an account of one incident in particular. It's no surprise of course, Gregory made sure you were fully informed before he took your money, but it's still not easy to read.
  25. "Two owners ago, before you came to Gregory. A camp called 'Slaveventure'? A mare called 'Mocha Cream'? It's not the only mark on your record, but it's the worst. If you were me, what would you think?"
  26. >Poor Windy can't even answer; he just turns to the side and tucks his wing in for you. You calmly slip the other wingbinder over it, fasten it with a final-sounding 'click!', and lift him up off the table. You don't want him jumping while he's deflighted. He barely waits for you to unlock his old collar before sulking off, his wings folded far tighter than the straps require.
  27.  
  28. >Later that night, as you're threading his restraints around the bed and locking them around his fetlocks , Windy finally quits with the silent treatment. "I'll never truly 'fly free' ever again, even with my new collar, will I Master?" His flexible neck is turned away so you can't see, but you can hear the tears in his voice.
  29. "Is flapping around the property here not enough? If you could, where would you go? What would you do? Don't let these old chains weigh you down too much; It's only a few more days! You know you're important to me, Windy. I can ask our neighbors to maybe expand your airspace... I could get some time off, we could maybe take a road trip somewhere?"
  30. >"That's not the point, 'Non. I thought the collar was just a formality. I kept it charged up so it wouldn't alarm, but I thought you had sort of forgotten about it. I thought you would just swap the new collar when it arrived, not make such a great big deal about all of this. I thought we were more like partners than 'owner / slave’. I thought you trusted me! Even calling you 'Master' just now felt weird, after that first year you've always been just 'Non to me.”
  31. "I'm sorry Windy, I never meant to hurt or trick you. I want you to be my friend, but I need to be careful too! Remember: I'm responsible for whatever you do, whether I know you’re doing it or not.
  32. >Your fingertips stroke the place on his neck where the missing collar rests. The imprint is quite noticeable under your touch; his coat is worn away there and some callus has built up. That old collar was almost a part of him, and you've ordered an identical model to fit just the same. Your hand slides down his mane to unfasten one wing.
  33. “Roll over for me, eh?”
  34. >”Yes, Master" is all he says, and you free up his other wing. You know he wants to stretch out and flap them in relief, but he keeps them folded tight while you’re there watching. There’s just nothing more you can do for him but turn off the light, close the door, and let him stretch and sob while chained up alone in the dark.
  35. >On the one hand, you can hardly blame him for being angry at being a slave. No amount of kindness could ever make up for your own freedom, that's for damn sure! On the other hand, you just can't accept the risk he seems to be asking you to take; He's an impulsive little thing, and there's no telling what sort of trouble he might get into. No telling how ruinously expensive that 'trouble' might end up being. At your age, bankruptcy would be almost worse than his condition! Sometimes paraequine slavery makes even you, his master, feel so powerless...
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  37. >You pass by the 'Pony Stuff' box again and his old halter catches your eye. It's built like a horse halter, but with complex buckles a hoof can't undo, made of magic resistant alloy. The noseband can be tightened down around his jaw, and it has removable blinders to cover his huge paraequine eyes. You can still remember how nervous he was on Delivery Day when you unpackaged him right here in the kitchen, the last time it was ever used. He was perfectly still under your command, but trembling and sweating with tension under your touch; he wanted so badly to make this work out with you. You also remember how overjoyed he was a year later when that fancy new collar let you loose the other restraints, and toss them in this box for seven good years. His little hooves didn't touch the ground for a week! The collar was a great idea and the new one is on its way, but perhaps too much freedom, without actually freeing him, is its own subtle sort of cruelty. Perhaps he needs you to give him more structure in his life. If he learned some discipline, if you were able to really trust him, maybe you could give give him real freedom instead of just 'trusting the collar'. Perhaps if he were more accustomed to strict controls, they wouldn't hurt him so much when they did become necessary. You twist the halter in your hands and think back to how good he looked, all shivering and vulnerable, on that day eight years ago...
  38. "Perhaps I SHOULD act more like 'The Master’, at least sometimes.”
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