>"Maybe if you loved her more she wouldn't have turned out a goddamn retard!"
"You can't put this all me!"
"Name the last kind thing you did from the bottom of your heart your majesty!"
>"How's that for kind?"
>A young girl stayed silent in the middle.
>Sobbing quietly to herself.
>Trying not to focus on the loud, angry blurs.
>Her hands moved over her ears as she wished to be anywhere else.
>"Oh see, look what you're doing to her!" one of the blurs gestured towards the small gray child.
>"You're making her spaz out by being a dumbass!"
"She gets this from your fucked up family!"
>The small, blonde-headed girl continued to try and block out the dreadful noises.
>But the vile sights of those two angry blurs stayed in her head.
>Her mind held onto that image like a desperate mountain climber.
>It burned at her heart.
>She was going to be sick.
"Sto-sto...stop..." she managed to quietly stutter out.
>Tears were still rolling down her cheeks, but the blurs grew more dark, more animalistic.
>"I FUCKING HATE YOU"
"I HOPE YOU ROT IN HELL!"
>Their roars echoed throughout the frightened girl's very being.
>Right down to her core.
>All of a sudden one of the dark creatures lunged forward and completely destroyed the other.
>With a vicious swipe of its long, shadowy claws.
>The beast turned it's attention to the girl.
>Who already fell to the floor.
>A blubbering, scared mess.
>The beast's maw was inches away from her.
>A low growl escaped from it's throat.
>Then, like a mighty lion, it let loose a terrifying roar.
>The location started to melt away into blackness.
>Soon it was just the girl and the monster.
>The beast shrieked her name once more.
>And like that.
>The shadow vanished.
>What came in its place was warm and soothing.
>The girl felt her arm jostle.
>Her head jolted straight up as screamed bloody murder.
>Sweating a mile a minute.
>Seeing the smiling pictures of happy people calmed her down slightly.
>But her arms continued to shake.
>Down to her fingers.
>She wrapped them around herself as the tears continued to drip from her baggy eyes.
>A loving glow proceeded to wrap itself around her as well.
>"Shhshh, it's okay"
>"Ah'm here, Ah ain't letting you go"
>The grey girl buried her face into the straw blonde hair of her protector.
>It smelled wonderful.
>Like fresh apples.
>Derpy sobbed once again.
>"Hush little blueberry, don't you cry."
>"Mama's gonna bake you an apple pie"
>"And if that apple pie tastes rough."
>"Mama's gonna give you lots of love"
>The sweet, melodic voice was like pure honey on Derpy's ears.
>Almost instantaneously she began to calm down.
>Every muscle in her body was relaxing all at once.
>It was amazing.
>"But if you're lost and don't know what to do."
>"Well mama's just gonna keep on loving you"
>Derpy sniffled once more, but finally felt her tears stop.
>She pulled herself out from the blonde hair pile she was hiding in.
>And looked her savior right in her eyes.
>The freckles under her eyes were curved as she was sporting a small smile.
>Derpy felt her heart soar like a rocket to space.
>Her love carefully wiped away the tears from Derpy's eyes.
>"There." she emphasized with a small peck on Derpy's cheek.
>"Feeling better darlin?"
>Inside Derpy's chest her heart swelled like a balloon.
>A big, beaming, joyous grin spread across her face.
>The two continued with their hug.
>"Ah always feel good when mah little blueberry is happy."
>Derpy's face flushed deep red as she snuggled the apple scented girl closer.
>The nightmare a distant memory.
>The gleaming ray of morning light fell upon the bed where Derpy slept.
>She opened up her eyes.
>Still in her bedroom.
>Letting out a sigh of relief, Derpy grabbed to the side of her.
>Expecting to grab a fistful of adorable.
>But instead grabbing empty space.
>That's when she noticed a particularly delicious smell in the air.
>Getting dressed she stumbled her way downstairs almost tripping over herself on the staircase down.
>Luckily she's used to fixing little mistakes like that.
>She crept up on the entrance to the kitchen and took a peek inside.
>There was a happy, looking girl.
>Stetson on her head.
>Modest work apparel around her body.
>Standing over a hot stove.
>Fixing up some breakfast.
>Derpy heard her hum a tune.
>In a strange way she was more drawn by the singing than with the food.
>It was mesmerizing in its own way.
>Derpy found herself drifting into the kitchen.
>Where she sat herself down at the table.
>Tripping slightly on her feet.
>Making a scuff sound.
>On a dime, the elated humming cook turned around towards the table.
>She let out a happy gasp when she saw it was Derpy at the table.
>"Look who's finally up and at 'em." she stirred one of the pans.
>"Especially with how darn peaceful you were lookin this morning."
>"Didn't want to leave the bed, but...Ah figured making breakfast makes up fer it" she nodded over to Derpy.
>Blushing deeply, Derpy gave a shaky thumbs-up back to her.
>"...Ya, did sleep good after..."that"...didn't ya?
>Before Derpy could form her next word.
>An overly excited ball of pure energy stormed into the dining room.
"Mornin Applejack!" the little bow-wearing girl stopped and hugged the cook around her waist.
>"Hehe, mornin to you too sugarcube." Applejack nervously chuckled.
>The bow-wearing blur made her way over to Derpy.
>Where she was assaulted with a spine-breaking bear hug.
>A staple of the Apple family.
>Derpy returned with a soft, but sweet hug to the little girl.
>The wall-eyed girl gave a warm smile to the little apple.
>"What's got you so chipper today Apple Bloom?" a voice from the side asked.
"Oh, well umm, today me and Scootaloo were gonna hang out a bit and...have a sleepover?"
>"And this is the first Ah'm hearing about it why?"
>Then out of the blue the bow-wearing girl groveled to Applejack.
>Clinging to her jeans as she begged and pleaded her case.
"Please Applejack, pleassssssssssssee?"
>Derpy stifled a snicker at the adorable family moment before her.
>She had gotten so used to the apple family these events just felt like natural occurrences anymore.
>Applejack continued to stir the food in a pan.
>"Did ya clean out the hen house?"
>"Did you give Bessie her medicine?"
>"Cleaned out the pig pen?"
>"Are ya just saying yes so Ah'll let ya have the sleepover?"
"I mean, no!" Apple Bloom corrected herself.
>Applejack chuckled as she plated the food from the pans.
>"Ah'm teasin, just go make sure yer room's all cleaned before ya git to gittin." Applejack ruffled her little sister's hair.
>It was as if Christmas, her birthday, and the two-for-one candy sale at Mr. Sugar's occurred all at the same time.
>Stars were twinkling in Apple Bloom's eyes as she sped off out of the kitchen.
"Thank you!" she hollered behind her.
>Small snickers were coming from Derpy's mouth.
>She couldn't keep them in.
>"She's a handful Ah know" a giggly sounding voice said as she put a plate full of food in front of Derpy.
>"But...she's worth it" Applejack took a seat right beside Derpy.
>In a beautiful state of bliss.
>Derpy grabbed a scoopful of the scrambled egg and potato in her fork.
>Simple, but delicious.
>"Taste alright?" Derpy heard from beside her.
>The grey girl nodded her head up and down as she munched on the food to her heart's content.
>"Good enough fer me!" Applejack declared as she dug in to breakfast as well.
>A small silence filled the air.
>The only sound was forks scraping against plates.
>Around Derpy though Applejack had gotten used to the quiet and calm.
>Probably due to the fact she was mute.
>All the bits and pieces were still there.
>She just didn't want to speak.
>Applejack knows it's not a topic she likes to bring up.
>But still, what kind of girlfriend would she be if she wasn't a little overprotective once in a while?
>"So..." Applejack mumbled as she mindlessly poked at her empty plate.
>"Ya did sleep well...didn't ya?" a hint of worry coated her question.
>Derpy swallowed her munched up food and looked over beside her.
>Applejack was trying to keep a positive face, but the cross-eyed girl could sense her troubled feelings.
>A burden fell upon Derpy's shoulders.
>It wasn't something she wanted to put over Applejack.
>So she shyly smiled and nodded once more.
>"A...alright, Ah trust you blueberry"
>Derpy smiled brightly at her pet name.
>She glanced up at a nearby clock and saw it was almost ten 'o' clock.
>She excused herself from the table as she pointed over to her postal uniform.
>"Well, Ah guess if yer feeling up to deliverin mail you must be feeling good" Applejack's words formed a small, cozy fire around Derpy's heart.
>Sure it was a white lie, but maybe if she believed it long enough it'd become the truth.
>Sliding into her uniform, Derpy slipped her carrier bag around her chest.
>And popped her post hat on top of her head.
>"Well, if yer gonna head out then Ah guess...ah guess ah can get started on my things too." she took her plate and Derpy's put them in a sink full of bubbly water.
>"Y'all just...be careful alright?"
>Applejack wrapped Derpy in a warm embrace.
>She gently caressed the back of her head.
>Tenderly kissing Derpy's soft cheek.
>"Ah'll be right here if ya need me for anything, okay?"
>Derpy returned the kiss back to Applejack by planting one right on her nose.
>She chuckled that innocent laugh.
>"Love ya blueberry!"
>"You worthless girl."
>"Can't you do anything right?"
>Tears were staining the cross-eyed girl's eyes as she tried to read the map.
"I...I...I don't know where we are" she admitted as she flipped the map all around trying to make sense of it.
>The older woman driving the car was gritting her teeth as she let out a grunt of anger.
>"You're just like your fucking father" she hissed as the air in the vehicle grew dense.
>The young blonde-haired girl foolishly attempted to try and read the map once more.
>But in a flash of rage the older woman clawed the map away from the young girl.
>"That's obviously not working!"
"Can-Can't we just call dad for help?" the young girl cried out.
>This just infuriated the driver even more.
>"I'd sooner die than ask your worm of a father for anything!"
>She groaned as she continued to not be aware of where she was heading.
>The cross-eyed girl beside her sniffled as she wished herself as far away as possible.
>She even thought of opening up the car door and making a break for it.
>"DERPY!" the shrill voice of the young girl's nightmares rang in her ears.
>Her heart threatened to explode in her chest.
>"Quit being useless and do something!" her shout only serving to make her hands shake even more.
>She glanced around the car until something outside the window caught her eye.
>A lone man in a trenchcoat was waiting at crosswalk where they had stopped for a moment.
>Derpy rolled the window down.
"S-Sir, s-sir?" she tried to hide the fact she was crying.
>"What the hell are you doing?"
"Cou-Cou-Could you give us directions to...to...New Shetland?
>The cloaked man looked between Derpy and her mom.
>His face was hidden in shadow.
>But these facts didn't bother the young girl.
>She just needed someone to help.
"Sure, not a problem kid." he spoke in a gruff voice.
"Just head down until you reach the highway and then hang a left onto the exit by Dairy Queen."
"You'll be in New Shetland in no time"
"Than-Thank you." she swallowed a sob.
>The shadowy figure nodded towards the girl.
>She rolled up her window just as the light turned green.
"Did...did you hear that mo-"
>"Yes Derpy, I heard that." she snapped as she turned on the radio.
>To drown out her anger and her daughter's tears.
"Every silver lining's got a touch of grey"
>That song stayed in her head as a grim reminder of that day.
>It was the worst day of her life.
>"Excuse me, M'am?
>The sound of fingers snapping caused her eyes to refocus on the world around her.
>She wasn't back in her mom's car.
>She was out in the town.
>With her carrier bag and her mail outfit.
>She was safe.
>"Hey M'am, you had a package for me" a pair of fingers snapped once more.
>Derpy's heart went cold as she realized what had just happened.
>In a fit of embarrassment she went deep red and pulled out a square box from her bag.
>She held it out to the man who took it rather roughly.
>"Thank you" he sarcastically spat towards Derpy as he walked back into his home.
>Slamming the door shut.
>Derpy shut her eyes and took in a deep breath.
>It was going to be a long day.
>She looked at the next piece of mail in her bag.
To Mr. and Mrs Rich.
>A rock settled in the mailwoman's stomach.
>She hated delivering anything to the Rich family.
>Derpy may have not showed it, but even seeing the name was enough to make her heart drop to her stomach.
>At least their daughter was nice.
>She gave Derpy a box of homemade cookies last year for Christmas.
>They were some of the best tasting cookies she had ever eaten.
>Derpy swallowed her fear and began the journey to the Rich Mansion.
>To hopefully get it over with as quick as removing a band-aid.
>Another good part about the route to the Rich mansion was the fact Derpy had to cut through the town square.
>The small vendors and shops always had something wonderful to sell.
>Plus the entire square usually smelled like apples.
>Fragrant, spellbinding apples.
>"Hey you!" a voice rang out from behind her.
>Warm arms hugging around her waist.
>How so much love could fit into one person Derpy would never understand.
>But she wasn't complaining.
>She turned around to be face to face with the shining face of Applejack.
>Her signature stetson still on her dirty, blonde hair.
>A simple t-shirt and jean shorts completed her outfit.
>"Wasn't expectin to see y'all around here darlin." she spoke with her usual upbeat gumption.
>One of Derpy's eyes looked down to Applejack's side and saw her own carrier bag strapped to the side.
>She pointed her finger towards it.
>Applejack's glance turned towards her side for a split second.
>"Ah, gotta make a quick pit stop by Sugarcube corner."
>"Pinkie's got some ingredients Ah need to make Auntie Orchard's world famous apple fritters"
>"It's gonna be so excitin!"
>A warm smile crept up on Derpy's face.
>Whenever she talks about apples she gets so passionate about it.
>That kind of energy is infectious.
>"So...deliverins going good?" she added in that question towards the end.
>Raising a finger upwards at first Derpy caught herself and thought for a minute.
>"...Not good?" that motherly worry returned to Applejack's voice.
>Derpy raised her hand flat and shook it up and down.
>Hopefully signifying it hasn't been great nor terrible.
>Applejack's eyes fell down to the ground
>"Chin up blueberry." she gently cupped Derpy's chin and lifted her head up.
>"Day ain't over yet so don't count this one up to the crows ya hear?" she playfully punched Derpy's arm.
>A happy nod was all Derpy returned.
>"Right, so whose your next delivery?"
>Derpy felt her smile turn upside down as she held out the letter to Applejack.
>And seeing her eyes widen in response made her reluctance feel all the more justified.
>"Uhh..." her train of thought was obviously derailed.
>"Darlin, maybe Ah should just do this one..."
>"You can jus' take care of some of the other ones in the meantime."
>The offer was tempting, but a good postal worker does his/her duties no matter what.
>Derpy held her hand up and held out her other hand to get the letter back.
>Applejack hesitated just a little bit.
>"...If you're sure about this..." she slid the letter back into Derpy's hand.
>"Ah trust ya completely sugarcube."
>A confident smile appeared on Derpy's face.
>Her rosy cheeks grinning from ear to ear.
>Applejack rubbed the back of her head.
>Obviously still unsure of the whole thing.
>"If anythin happens..." Applejack felt her smile dipping into a frown.
>But she took one look at Derpy's worried face and knew she had to be strong.
>For both of them.
>"Ah'll just be over with Pinkie okay?"
>Derpy took in what Applejack just said and gave her a firm salute.
>That got a chuckle out of her.
>In the moment of distraction however, Derpy sneakily planted a kiss on Applejack's cheek.
>And gave her a quick hug before running off with a skip in her step.
>Towards the Rich Mansion.
>Applejack rubbed her cheek feeling all warm and fuzzy inside.
>"...That silly girl" she swooned over the cross-eyed cutie.
>The sheer magnitude of the Rich mansion never failed to wow Derpy's simple eyes.
>A monogrammed "FR" adorned the crest of the front door.
>In the side of the yard was a gold plated swimming pool within another gold plated swimming pool.
>Fenced off of course.
>With a deep breath she faced the door and put on her game face.
>Knocking but only three times on the large, wooden doors.
>She stood back to attention as she heard the sound of the door handle beginning to turn.
>The anxious mailwoman braced for impact.
>A minute went by and no berating, no screaming, and no insults.
>Just complete silence.
>"Uhh...hi?" a confused voice broke the silence.
>Derpy noticed her eyes were shut so she quickly opened them.
>She was greeted by a young-looking girl in a yellow and black outfit.
>Which complimented her light pink skin and her lavender hair.
>"Can...I help you or something?" the girl's smiled grew slightly nervous at the awkward situation.
>Derpy's eyes widened when she remembered the letter in her hand.
>And with a smile of pure victory she proudly placed the envelope out in front of her.
>The young girl looked down at the letter and back up to Derpy's innocent, bright face.
>"Oh, uhh thank you. she said as she grasped the letter from Derpy's hand.
>The mailwoman drew her hand back and gave her a silly salute.
>A shy half-smile crept up on the young girl's face as she tried to hold back a snicker.
"DIAMOND TIARA!" a booming, shrill voice bellowed out
"WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU'RE DOING?"
>Derpy could feel the color drain from her face.
>That voice was too familiar.
>The young girl's head drooped low as she turned around.
"We do NOT do the work of the..."help""
>Expensive haircut, feathered boa, name brand dress, and an interesting pair of green, leather heels.
>To say this lady looked like the caricature of Saturday Morning cartoon villain was an understatement
>But to everyone in town they knew the mighty roar of Spoiled Rich.
>"Randolph h-hurt his shoulder earlier..."
>"I just wanted to hel-"
"Don't you talk back to me missy!
>Diamond Tiara's eyes fell as she averted her away away from Spoiled's venomous hiss.
>"...Yes mother." she spoke as if she had to rehearse that line one thousand times.
>Derpy felt a weird tightness in her gut.
>Like it was pulling at her from the inside.
"Dear, you're being too hard on her again."
>A gruff, male voice grabbed everyone's attention.
>If Derpy had to make an educated guess she'd say that it was Filthy Rich.
>And seeing a brief glimpse of that slicked back hair and shady eyes only proved her right.
>"I'm building her to be "resilient""
>"You being too soft on her is what's holding her back!" she yelled off to the side where Derpy couldn't see well.
>"She'll be nothing in this world if I don't do something about it.
>A swirling, twisting void inside the poor mailwoman's head was pounding away at her sanity.
>The yelling was dredging up old memories better left forgotten.
>Instinctively she held her hands over her ears and shut her eyes.
>She counted backwards from ten.
>Chest heaving with labored breathing.
>Cold sweat beads running down the sides of her head..
>The muffled screaming was still finding its way into Derpy's head.
>Just when she couldn't take it anymore.
>She was still shivering and trying to find her happy place however.
>A stinging force to the side of her face drew her eyes wide open to what just happened.
>There standing before her was the tall, intimidating figure that was her mother.
>"Quit acting like a spaz and listen when I talk to you!" her shrill voice echoed throughout their kitchen.
>This wasn't real.
>Derpy's mind refused to acknowledge this as anymore than a fever dream.
>Tears were welling up in Derpy's eyes as she still felt the sting of the slap on her cheek.
>"I"m doing this for your good Derpy."
>Her heart pounded furiously in her chest.
>"Mama loves you."
>"...An' that's why Granny always leaves out two whole lemons on Groundhog's Day."
>Applejack pulled the last of the metal trays from the oven.
>Each held the treasured dessert of a scrumptious apple fritter.
>She took a satisfied glance at her hard work before looking up at the clock nearby.
>"Oh shoot." she let slip as she took off her apron.
>"Ah promised Big Mac Ah'd help him clean some cider barrels today.
>"Pinkie, wouldja mind just droppin these off by the barn later this evening?"
>The cotton candy ball of sugar let out a squee of pure delight.
"Okie dokie loki!" she sporadically gathered up all the pans in her arms and neatly set them to the side.
>"Thanks Pinks, you're a lifesaver." she nodded her head towards the baker as she began to open the door.
"And you're an apple!" she excitedly shouted out as she wrapped each pan with tin foil.
>Applejack chuckled lightly. as she walked out once again in town square.
>The sun was still out in full force, but that was going to change in an hour or two.
>As long as there was still daylight she could scavenge some more work to do.
"Uhh, excuse me?" came a nervous voice to her side.
>Applejack stole a glance to the side where the voice came from.
>There stood Diamond Tiara with an uneasy look upon her face.
>She meekly waved at the confused Applejack.
>In response Diamond Tiara kicked at the ground with the tip of her boot.
"You're...close with that...umm...blonde girl right?"
>"The one that doesn't like to...talk?"
>Applejack cocked a suspicious eyebrow towards the girl.
>"Ah reckon we'd be close on account of the fact she's mah girlfriend." Applejack tried to hide the snark in her voice but it found a way out of her.
>Diamond Tiara's eyes widened in response.
>"Wait a minute...y'all Rich's lil girl ain't ya?"
>A half-hearted nod was all she gave Applejack.
>And like a thousand light bulbs turning on at the same time.
>The connections were being made.
>"Mom...whenever you and dad scream...an-and yell at each other.
>"Using those ugly...words"
>"It-It makes me not want to be around anymore..."
>The imposing looking woman across from Derpy's expression changed like she just dropped something important out her window.
"Look what you're doing to my baby you prick!" she yelled past Derpy towards the living room.
>A brash, raspy voice screamed back.
"You're the one making her want to kill herself you psycho!
>Derpy's mom gasped over dramatically.
"This is obviously all your fault!"
>Derpy had wandered away from the kitchen.
>She had wanted someone to care about her in this time of need.
>Someone to help bear her burdens.
>From her mom and dad.
>But as she turned the corner to the bathroom she glanced back.
>She saw nothing but two angry blurs.
>Bitter angry blurs.
>The sound of a wild bird caused Derpy to look up.
>Clear, blue sky.
>Not her mom's house.
>But not Sweet Apple Acres either.
>Curious as to why she was in the middle of the woods of all places.
>She tried to recall anything prior to waking up here.
>As she took a break near the base of a large tree.
>A memory popped into her head.
>It was Spoiled Rich shouting in her face and in Diamond Tiara's face.
>And like that she began to remember the whole day.
>Nightmares and all.
>She curled up near the tree on the grassy, hard floor.
>Figuring waiting was the best option right now if someone was trying to rescue her.
>She just wanted to go home.
>When one is alone, one tends to think, but when one is an emotionally scarred individual.
>One would rather not think that much.
>This was the case for Derpy.
>Countless therapists, and doctors, and friends all told her the same thing.
"Those weren't your parents they were just sad, angry people"
>Like a broken record it's what they always told her.
"It wasn't your fault" was the only thing she ever believed out of their mouths.
>And even then she had her doubts about that.
>Maybe that was her legacy.
>She inherits these attributes, traits, or quirks that someways down the line just turn her into...that.
>A sad, pathetic person who lashes out at the world for everything and for nothing.
>Her "true" self just like with her parents.
>She only hoped that she wouldn't live long enough for her or Applejack to see it.
>As the subject turned towards Applejack, she imagined her bright, smiling face.
>Her guardian angel.
>Derpy still had no idea what Applejack saw in her, but maybe that's a good thing.
>The cross-eyed girl adored the way she called out her name.
>As if her words were being carried on a warm Summer breeze.
>Yeah, just like that.
>It was at this point Derpy had begun to listen carefully.
>The sounds of the woods seemed to have died down quite a bit.
>The calls were getting louder.
>It could only be one person.
>Derpy stumbled over herself as she cleared through a nearby bushel of trees .
>Leaves and sticks brushed against her cheeks.
>Crunching beneath her feet.
>Soon she saw the makings of a clearing.
>A wide open field with large, mountainous trees all beside them.
>Scanning the trees on the other side.
>Her eyes stopped on a wonderful familiar sight.
>No doubt about it.
>It was Applejack's stetson, and Applejack herself wearing it.
>Derpy was so excited her heart felt like it was flying.
>There was an overwhelming urge to rush out into that field and grab Applejack in the biggest bear hug she could manage.
>But, a strange feeling appeared in her gut.
>A knot that was pulling her attention to it.
>Just like back at the Rich Mansion.
>Besides the sound of Applejack shouting out for Derpy.
>The woods were quiet.
>Not a bird chirp or leaf falling down.
>A nausea feeling overcame Derpy as she was still hiding in the grove.
>Derpy shook the nerves from her head and refocused on Applejack and Diamond Tiara.
>They were walking away with their backs turned to Derpy.
>"Blueberry?!" Applejack shouted to the empty-sounding woods.
>The cross-eyed girl stayed completely still.
>Not twitching a muscle.
>So it made it all the more challenging to stay still when she heard twigs breaking a few feet down from her.
>Time felt like it had froze completely.
>But not for whatever was emerging from the woods.
>Derpy tried to keep herself from shaking like a leaf among leaves.
>But hearing a low, guttural growl did not help one bit.
>She carefully turned her head to her right.
>Through the empty spaces in the trees she saw patches of dark, grey fur.
>Cuts, scrapes, and bruises along the body.
>Yellow, beady eyes.
>Devoid of soul.
>A bloodthirsty wolf
>And it looked like it had started to size up its next meal.
>Applejack and Diamond Tiara continued to shout into the woods without a second thought.
>Not knowing they were being hunted.
>Poor Derpy had no idea what to do.
>She couldn't run, talk, or move without fear of becoming wolf chow herself.
>But she had to warn those two somehow
>She quickly peeked at the ground to see if there were any large rocks, or sticks she could use as weapons.
>But as soon as she took her eyes off the wolf.
>A fast rustling noise caught her attention.
>Derpy glanced out back at the clearing and saw a bone-chilling sight.
>The wolf had begun to close the distance between it and the girls.
>Soon it would pounce.
>There was a little voice inside Derpy's head.
>In times of strife it would always speak softly.
>Offer advice on what it knows Derpy should do.
>This time was no exception.
>As the wolf crawled closer to the girls.
>An intrusive thought entered her mind.
"Because of you the only person who ever loved you is going to die"
"Your mom was right."
>Derrrrrpy!" Applejack's worried sweet voice rang out once more.
>The cross-eyed girl felt so conflicted.
>She didn't know which way to turn.
>Derpy's eyes focused on Applejack.
>That got her thinking.
>What would Applejack do?
>The more she stared the more she felt the fire under her heels light up.
>She knew what Applejack would do.
>So she ran into danger headfirst.
>Heart ablaze with adrenaline.
>She ran as fast as her legs would take her.
>But even she couldn't keep up the pace with a hungry wolf.
>There had to be another way to get their attention.
>And before she knew it.
>That fire inside her gut began to burn and twist around her insides.
>It stopped in her throat.
>She felt like she was going to throw up, but in the good way.
>As the wolf was practically a leap away from tearing into both girls.
>Derpy realized there was only one thing she could do.
>Something snapped inside.
>It was like someone started up machinery that hadn't been used in years.
>"A...Apple...jack." she coughed out.
>But it wasn't loud enough.
>She swallowed a deep breath.
>And from the bottom of her lungs.
>Derpy drew on a mighty roar.
>"APPLEJACK!" her voice cracked as it echoed through the trees.
>Her lungs on fire.
>Derpy continued her sprint to save Applejack and Diamond Tiara.
>They had both stopped.
>And for a brief moment.
>Applejack stopped in place and cocked her head around.
>Surprise was an understatement..
>But the wolf was just within striking distance.
>Running on all cylinders, Derpy pushed as hard as she could.
>But fate seemed to have other ideas.
>Applejack froze in place as she witnessed the brute of a wolf preparing to go in for the kill.
>It all happened in a flash.
>Derpy was neck and neck with the wolf for a split second.
>Until it lunged.
>There was barely any time to register any other option.
>Summoning all of her strength she charged a tackle at the scared stiff Applejack.
>Shoving her clean out of the path of the wolf.
>But the furry beast landed against Derpy's back.
>Knocking her towards the grassy floor. face first.
>Desperation fogged her vision.
>She tried to crawl away, but the wolf held the petite girl in place with it's leg strength.
>It's claws dug into the sides of Derpy's legs.
>Making sure she couldn't escape.
>Through her panicked screaming, Derpy tried to shake or kick the wolf off her.
>But after one kick too many.
>The back of her legs felt like they were ablaze.
>They didn't want to kick anymore.
>Derpy shut her eyes.
>She didn't want to see what happens next.
>At least she'll go on knowing that her life wasn't a total waste.
>As Derpy accepted the finality of the situation.
>A rustling sound from the front caught her ear.
>Then a thunderous crack followed by a pathetic whimper.
>The weight fell off of Derpy's back as she could hear a ragged retreat from behind.
>Slowly, she opened her eyes.
>And saw a wonderful sight.
>Applejack standing before her.
>Her guardian angel.
>She looked back down at her floored girlfriend.
>And quickly slid to her side.
>Applejack carefully tried to lift Derpy off the ground.
>But the pain of trying to stand up was beyond all measure.
>Applejack's eyes traveled down to the back of Derpy's legs.
>Practically all the color drained from her face.
>The frightened farm hand grasped her back.
>Tears were welling in her eyes as she looked like any minute she would just break down.
>"Apple...jack?" the cross-eyed girl began.
>"Can...can you sing for me?"
>She shut her eyes for a moment.
>"I like it when...you sing for me."
>Her body was starting to feel numb.
>No tingles, fuzzies, or pain.
>Applejack still held her like any minute she would break apart.
"Of course darlin..." her voice broke towards the end.
>More tears fell onto Derpy's face.
"Bu-But you gotta promise me something." she petted the back of Derpy's messy hair.
>It didn't phase her.
"You can't...you can't close your eyes okay?
>A weak nod was all Applejack got out of her.
>Time was running out .
>She sat Derpy up in her lap.
>Her head resting in Applejack's caring hands still.
>She kissed Derpy's pale hand and squeezed it firmly.
"Momma used ta sing this one to me...."
"Least...that's what Granny always said"
>The rustling of the trees were the only sounds of the forest.
>Wind blowing between leaves.
>Otherwise pure silence.
>A simple sweet hum broke through the quiet.
>It was melodic.
>Even her humming was beautiful.
>Before she could sing a single line.
>A voice rang out beside them.
"They're over here!"
>The sounds of frantic steps rushed to their location.
>For a shining moment, Applejack felt everything was going to work out.
>It was going to be okay.
"Derpy, you're going to be okay!"
>Looking down, Derpy's eyes were shut.
>Her body grew colder to the touch.
"Darlin...?" she shook her head gently.
>Her one moment of hope fleeing from sight.
"...Blueberry?" she whispered through her raspy voice.
>One last desperate attempt to do what Applejack knew couldn't be done.
>But she didn't care.
>A crowd of ponies all lead by Diamond Tiara ended up in front of the two girls.
>The ones in medical scrubs rushed to their side.
>"M'am, m'am are you alright?"
>"Are you injured?"
>Applejack had her face buried in Derpy's disheveled hair.
>Eyes red like fire.
>She sobbed as she pulled herself away from her hair.
>There was nothing.
>Nothing except a blinding white light.
>It was a strange glow, but it was enticing.
>Like a moth to the flame she was drawn to it.
>An odd comfort radiated from within.
>But in one final act.
>It coated everywhere in a brilliant light.
>Revealing the oddly familiar place.
>Average looking walls.
>Average looking table.
>But a sink full of dirty dishes.
>Average looking woman sitting at the average looking table.
>Taking a long drag of her cigarette.
>Tear streaks ran down the sides of her face.
>She had the same blonde hair and golden colored eyes as Derpy.
>A long plume of smoke exited from her lips.
>The cross-eyed girl had a strange inkling about what happened here.
>All she remembered from it was how it made her feel.
>The older woman turned towards the open window.
>Cigarette still hanging between her fingers.
>"...No one will ever love you as much I do" she rubbed the cigarette out into the ash tray on the table.
>She stood up and slowly walked towards Derpy.
>Dark bags accenting her thousand yard gaze.
>Then with the force of a wet noodle, she limply wrapped her arms around Derpy's form.
>It was a hug.
>"...No one." she whispered into her ear.
>Then barely a second later, she broke herself off from the hug.
>And walked through the back door.
>Just an empty home, and an empty girl.
>All of a sudden however she felt herself being dragged backwards.
>The kitchen shrank out of view into a point of nothingness.
>A noise through the darkness.
>For some reason she found herself following the sound of that voice.
>It just felt like the right thing to do.
>A dull, orange light appeared on the horizon.
>It beckoned the troubled Derpy.
And she answered the call because she knew that's what her gut told her to do.