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Dadonequus Discord (The After Years) Tea for Two

Erf1111 Jul 2nd, 2017 (edited) 164 Never
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  1. >You sat in the carriage, next to your mother. She was dressed professionally, as were you. With a black suit with a very professional looking tie.
  2. >You felt proud to be by her. She was the pinnacle of the family business and the better of your two parents.
  3. >She gave birth to you, nurtured you, and believed in you. For her you'd do anything.
  4. >Well, almost everything. You refused to go to any school that would impede your own work or take away your time with Scrappy.
  5. >your father was inept as well. Everything he tries to do is usually foolish, you wondered why mother saw anything in him.
  6. >But you didn't care. For you are Illustrious Rich. And you were going with your mother to make sure some sponsored parade in Manehatten went smoothly. Something you were sure your mother could handle. But you'd be there, just in case.
  7. >"Illustrious! We're going to have so much fun! We never get to hang out! And look, I brought Chryssy along too! That way if you get lonely, she can keep you safe! Just like she does me!"
  8. >Ahh yes, your sister. Crown Jewel, was here too. That is a tad bothersome.
  9. "I don't need the protection of an inanimate object. Jewel, a doll can't protect you from anything. The sooner you realiz-"
  10. >"Illustrious. " Your mother interrupts, as she glares at you. That glare...it made you feel inadequate in her eyes. "Don't say things like that." She then turned to Crown Jewel with a smile "Crown Jewel"
  11. >Crown Jewel, who was feeling immediately crushed from what her brother was saying. Looked up to her mother with sad eyes as she cuddled her doll a little tighter than usual. For comfort. "Yes mommy?"
  12. >"Illustrious meant that he's a very brave colt and PROBABLY doesn't need Chryssy's protection. But..." Your mother looked to you with a gentle smile and gave you a pat "I'm sure if something did scare him. You'd be the first pony he sees for protection"
  13. "...Mother..."
  14.  
  15. >Humiliating. Why would she say such a thing? This was something your father could never overcome. Was your mother's ability to get what she wants. Or to correct what doesn't need correcting. And it was something you could never beat as well. How could you? To make her truly upset would be devastating. You knew she could handle you rejecting other schools or tutors. But mother, and even father was highly protective of Crown Jewel for some reason. As if they didn't want her to suffer some sort of fate. You remember the story of how your grandmother used to be towards your mother when she was a filly. But perhaps you were thinking too deeply into it.
  16. >And Crown Jewel herself just lit up with a happy grin as she looked at you with excitement "Is that true Illustrious? Are you super brave like AJ is?"
  17. >Well, when she puts it that way.
  18. >You smirked as you sat up with pride. adjusting your glasses just a tad to seem more heroic.
  19. "Well, in comparison to our brother. I would say I'm rather brave. Perhaps braver. Yes, I'd say I am. Since I am able to look at even the most complicated problems as if they were nothing and solve them accordingly!"
  20. >"That's so super cool! So that means you're not afraid of anything except bears, right? I remember when we visited Auntie Fluttershy and Mr.Bear was there and you screamed really loud." After mentioning that however, Crown Jewel looked down, feeling sad about something "I wish I remembered to bring Chryssy or Mr.Floppy with me. They would have made you feel better..."
  21. >Of course she'd mention your fear of bears. She never seemed to realize anything she says.
  22. "...It's fine."
  23. >you then dismiss Crown Jewel as you look up to your mother with a smile
  24. "So Mother, what exactly will we be doing in Manehatten. As your son, I will do anything required to make sure your work goes smoothly."
  25. >Your Mother seemed to find your words very assuring. As she gave you a gentler, more appeasing head rub with her soft hoof. You liked this..
  26.  
  27. >"It's nothing complicated Illustrious. It's just some of the griffons in the parade are demanding a few more bits and Mommy has to negotiate with them." You could suddenly feel a terrible aura emanating from her, behind her gentle smile "They thought they get more than what we agreed to by all jumping out at the last moment. But they obviously didn't realize they'd be causing an issue with me and as you know." She then looked ahead with a serious scowl on her face "Mommy likes to grind issues into dust"
  28. >Not the most eloquent way to put it. It was just rather...frightening. But admirable.
  29. >Crown Jewel just looked up at her with an ignorant smile on her face "I don't like issues too mommy! If there's an issue, then the parade won't happen. And that would mean Nopony would get to have any fun....and that's bad"
  30. >"Very Right, Crown Jewel" Your mother looked to her with soft pride "And that would also mean that the theaters and small businesses that are taking part in the parade wouldn't be able to participate in the parade. The parade itself exists to advertise failing or small businesses that could use a little boost in sales and customers."
  31. >"So everypony wins if the parade happens?" Crown Jewel asked
  32. >Your mother nods "Everypony wins"
  33. >"Yaayyy! Did you hear that, Illustrious? Everypony wins! I like it when that happens" Crown Jewel said as she hugged her doll happily.
  34. >You supposed that was important. What was more important was doing your mother proud.
  35. "Yes yes...That's fine. However, Mother. It is obvious that you might not be able to do this alone. Griffons are rather stubborn and stingy. Perhaps we should go over a few plans to show these griffons that their disobedience will not be tolerated"
  36. >"Oh oh! like asking them nicely to stop being mean and stingy!" Crown Jewel looked up at mother with an excited smile, as if that would actually work.
  37. "Crown Jewel, that obviously won't work"
  38.  
  39. >".....oh" She said with disappointment before coming up with another idea "What if we gave them hugs! Maybe their just mad or sad about something. I know when I'm sad. Hugs always make me feel better" She seemed really REALLY excited to have that answer accepted.
  40. "Also a terrible idea, Griffons care not for hugs and cuddles. Only bits"
  41. >"Huh? Erm...Is that true? Because Gabby seems really nice. And Rainbow Dash says Gilda is a nice Griffon when you get to know her. I'd really like to meet her too. I bet she'd like to meet all my dollies" Crown Jewel said, with such naivete
  42. "...depends on your definition of nice.."
  43. >You didn't like Griffons at all. Always a shady sort.
  44. >Again, your words sting Crown Jewel's optimism. Which catches your mother's attention.
  45. >She leans forward and hugs and holds Crown Jewel close. "Don't listen to Illustrious, he's just being a stingy griffon himself"
  46. >w-what?!
  47. "M-Mother?! I am not being a stingy griffon! I merely speak the truth! Surely you can see that. I'm trying to help.We have to look at this issue realistically and objectively. How else are we supposed to deal with those griffons?"
  48. >"I'll be dealing with those griffons, Illustrious." Your mother tells you in a harsher tone. As if she was getting upset at you. "I brought you and Crown Jewel along so you both could watch the parade and enjoy each others company. I think you spend too much time in your little shed. It's making you reclusive." Your Mother stated with a caring yet stern look.
  49. "What?! Are you saying I'll be staying at the hotel?! But I put these clothes on so I may present myself as a respectable member of the family and company!"
  50.  
  51. >"Illustrious, you will be showing that you are both those things. By staying at the hotel room and by being in public during the parade. But the griffons, that's my business. I don't want you to be left alone. Alright?" Your mother raises Crown Jewel up and boops her nose with her own. " Crown Jewel, do you want to spend the day with your brother?"
  52. >"YES!YES!YES!YES! I never get to hang out with him! Oh! Can me and him have a tea party, mommy? I promise I won't break anything!" Crown Jewel looked happier than you've ever seen her before.
  53. >Yet you were the one put in a tiresome position.
  54. >"Of course you can sweetie. I even had your favorite tea set brought over for just that." Your mother gave Crown jewel a kiss on the nose and hugged her once again. Making her squee in delight.
  55. >You just sat there, cheeks puffed. Defeated. You had friends.....a friend.
  56. >Scrappy was fine.
  57. >And it's not like you hated Crown Jewel. You stuck around with her sometimes. She was fine on her own or with AJ.
  58. "Mother...I think you should reconsider. I just know I'd make a valuable asset."
  59. >"You already are a valuable asset. Your my son. And as my son, I just want you to spend some quality time with your little sister. You can be her little protector. Her herocolt, you can do that for me, can't you?" She looked at you, stared at you, giving you a gentle pat once more.
  60. >Herocolt...
  61. >ugh, that was your father's former title.
  62. >But that look she's giving you. She would surely get upset at you if you denied her request.
  63. >And you could deal with that, as you know normally she'd understand. But this? She wouldn't. She would look at you with true disdain. She would be ashamed. Perhaps, she'd even distance herself from you.
  64.  
  65. >You can't have that. Everything you have is thanks to her and her diligence. To upset her that badly...
  66. "...Yes mother. If you request I stay with Crown Jewel, then I will stay with her."
  67. >"yay!" Crown Jewel jumped and hugged you in excitement. You put your legs slowly around her. Not very enthusiastic about what your future holds. "We're going to have lots of fun! You'll see! I can't wait to hang out with you Illustrious!"
  68. >As she cuddled into you. You silently lamented being unable to prove how valuable you truly were to your mother.
  69. >Even after arriving at the hotel. And entering such a luxurious room. Your mother refused to allow you to accompany her. Even telling you that you already said you'd watch Crown Jewel.
  70. >It was so frustrating. But you had already agreed. Why could this be something simple? Why make it so complicated? You just wanted to help her! To show her how good of a son you could be!
  71. >But no. She just gave you both a hug and a kiss. And left you to your fate.
  72. >as you sat in front of a tiny table. With Jewel's doll next to you. With Jewel serving tea.
  73. >At least the tea was real.
  74. >"Oh Mr.Rich, did you see that dragon by the garden today? so many ponies would say he was dreadful. But I thought he was cute...erm...Adora....Precious. I thought he was just simply precious. How about you?" Crown Jewel said as she finished pouring the tea. trying to sound eloquent and full of class.
  75. >you just rolled your eyes.
  76. "..what dragon? What garden? what are you talking about?"
  77.  
  78. >"Hrn..e-erm..Well...ahrm" At first, she seemed hurt from your words. But she recovered from the recoil. And continued to speak as she bowed her head to her doll, Chryssy. "Me and Miss Chryssy were talking about it earlier today. We thought you may have noticed but perhaps we were wrong...erm..mistaken. Ahh! But surely you noticed the happy rainbow that showered our home with happiness and goodne.....good will. correct?" You noticed she was becoming nervous. Looking into your eyes for, what you could guess, any sight of you enjoying yourself.
  79. >You finally realized what she was actually doing.
  80. >She really was just playing pretend.
  81.  
  82. >Though, no matter how much she played pretend. It wouldn't make anything real. Aside from the tea.
  83. >You really had no answer for that question. So you waited a moment for her little game of pretend to pass.
  84. >You then took a sip. And as expected, it was a quality drink. Crown Jewel did have some positive qualities about her. Such as her ability to prepare tea. She would also often bring father a sandwich should he happen to end up on the couch.
  85. >"Illustrious...do you think rainbows are pretty?" She looks at you intently. waiting for your answer.
  86. >They were...alright.
  87. "I suppose. They aren't of any real use. But they are indeed "pretty" if that's the answer you want."
  88. >She shook her head. "I don't want that to be the answer. I want that to be your answer. It would make us ever so happy to know your thoughts."
  89. "Rainbows are generated from either magic or the refraction and reflection of light. I've seen them many times before, either from the sky itself or in my experiments. They mean nothing to me"
  90. >Crown Jewel's ears drooped as she looked down at her tea. and slowly pushed it away. Losing her drive to partake in her pretend game. "oh...I guess if you're super smart. Rainbows would be boring"
  91. "Yes, that would be the case."
  92. >You put down your tea cup and look over at your downtrodden sister. For some reason, you felt a small twist in your chest. It made you feel a somewhat awful feeling.
  93. "But erm...the tea is perfect. As usual"
  94. >"....yeah...." Was all she could muster.
  95. >She just sat there, glancing at you every so often. you had no idea what more to say.
  96. >Or perhaps she was bored. Perhaps you could entertain yourself and her with one game. That should be enough time for mother to return to have you assist her.
  97. "Jewel, would you care for a game?"
  98. >Her ears perk up a little when you say that. she slowly glances at you with timid curiousness. "Game?"
  99. "Mhmm, a counting game. Tell me, do you know what Pi is?"
  100.  
  101. >"Pie! Ohhh! I like pie!" She says with sudden excitement. You didn't expect her to get THAT excited over it.
  102. >But that was probably due to the fact that she did seem intent on having fun with you in some way. It's as if she had already forgotten about the tea party. A good sign indeed.
  103. "Good, very good. Well then, listen closely because the game is simple. Pi is an infinite number. a mathematical constant. Therefore, the game is to say every number in sequence until somepony makes a mistake. Understand?"
  104. >But she just blinks at you. confused.
  105. "Jewel? Is there some sort of issue?"
  106. >She nods silently
  107. "What is it?"
  108. >"Pie isn't a number. It's a food"
  109. >....
  110. >You groan.
  111. "Never mind...."
  112. >Her ears droop as she curls up. hiding her face behind her legs as she looks at you with big sad eyes "I-I'm sorry...did I do something wrong?"
  113. "It's fine. We'll simply do something else. Surely mother packed my chessboard. We can play a few games of chess together"
  114. >Your chessboard, while not as immaculate as Scrappy's one of a kind ensemble. Was still something you always wish to have around should you ever find a challenging opponent. And while Jewel was no challenge. You could easily set up challenges for yourself to help improve your game.
  115. >You manage to find the chessboard in one of the suitcases. in perfect condition as always.
  116. >You never really played against Crown Jewel before. But, as you set up the chess board. She just looked on with more curiousness. "Do you really want to play chess with me?"
  117. "Of course I do. It's good practice"
  118. >"And you won't get mad at me if I make a few booboos?" She asks, in a timid tone
  119. >You sigh, a tad frustrated. "Yes, it will be fine. I'll allow you to try another move if you make a move you can't actually make and-GYAH!"
  120. >She jumps onto you, nearly scattering your pieces.
  121.  
  122. >She happily rubs her cheek along yours "YAY! I GET TO PLAY CHESS WITH MY BIG BROTHER! YOU NEVER LET ME EVEN TOUCH YOUR CHESSBOARD! THIS IS GONNA BE FUN AND..." She giggled as she hopped back and gave you a rather adorable yet arrogant look "Ya better be careful! Or I'm going to beat you!"
  123. >interesting. She seemed confident in her abilities. Perhaps you shouldn't underestimate her after all.
  124. "Well then Jewel, show me what you have."
  125. >And the game was on....
  126. >For all of a few turns.....
  127. >You easily crushed her.
  128. >"Darn! Oh well! You want to play again?" She looked at you with a playful grin as her tail wagged to and fro
  129. "Jewel...I....mnnn...fine"
  130. >you hold your breath as you set up the board again. This time, you'd instill a challenge onto yourself. Since Jewel was actually a garbage player.
  131. >forcing yourself to use each piece within an order. That should be sufficient.
  132. >But alas, it was not. Though it took a few rotations. You were STILL able to easily defeat Crown Jewel.
  133. >"Wow, you're really good! But I got better too! See, it took you longer this time!" She points out. being none the wiser to your self challenge.
  134. >"Can we go again? I'm having lots of fun playing with you!" She hopped about happily.
  135. >but you weren't. She was painfully terrible at the game.
  136.  
  137. >You agree to yet another game. Which, of course, makes her cheer in excitement.
  138. >This time, you self impose a challenge to yourself to force you to move any piece you choose three consecutive times.
  139. >And still, you crush her. She doesn't make any attempt to set up a trap or mind game you. It was as if she was just moving pieces around, just trying to bum rush your king and failing hard.
  140. "Jewel, why are you playing like this? It's amateurish"
  141. >You were annoyed that you were beating her so easily. it was an insult to the game itself.
  142. >"...Really? I thought I was doing good. But I knew I'd lose, you're just too great at the game! I'm having fun though, do you want to play again?" She looks at you in earnest, revving up for another game.
  143. "No"
  144. >"Oh..." At first she seemed nervous, but then she smiled again "Do you want to play something else?"
  145. "No..."
  146. >"...oh" Her ears drooped as she looked down, but again, she perked up once again with enthusiasm. "Do you want to look out the window with me? I bet we can see a lot of neat things from this room! We're really high up!"
  147. "No, I don't want to do anything."
  148. >"....Illustrious? Am...I making you sad? I'm..sorry if I am. O-oh!" Her enthusiasm is half hearted this time. She was faltering. "H-how about we do what you want to do?"
  149. >What you want to do?
  150. "All I want to do is meditate and plan. I really have no time to play with you"
  151. >Crown Jewel tensed up when she heard those words. She started to nervously stroke her mane as she looked away "I-I understand. You just want to help mommy, right? I didn't mean to bother you. I just wanted to have fun with my big brother."
  152. >You adjust your glasses as you stand up and walk past her as you move to a corner and sit.
  153. "Well that was a wasted effort. I don't have time for silly games and pretend. You'll be fine on your own. Go make some lunch or something"
  154.  
  155. >"A-a wasted effort? U-umm..." She started to stroke her mane a little faster. "Illustrious, do you hate me? I-I could do better at chess if you want. I-I just needed practice....please don't hate me" She was already feeling crushed. All she wanted to do was have fun with you. be around you. She just wanted to spend the day with her big brother. she admired both you and AJ. AJ for his heroism and ridiculously stupid pranks. And you? Well, you were of above average intelligence. Which you could say is well deserved through your hard work and genetics on your mother's side. Which you were thankful for since your father was a twit.
  156. >You also had no more time for Crown Jewel. This was too important.
  157. "Not right now Jewel, I'm focusing. and it requires all my concentration."
  158. >She didn't say anything after that. And you didn't bother yourself with what she said.
  159. >And surprisingly. She never piped up after she had said what she said either.
  160. >Finally, some peace to plan.
  161. >And of course. There was various ways of dealing with griffons. But if you had to pick the quickest and most effective way?
  162. "Firing and blacklisting them should be fine. Well, threatening to blacklist and fire them anyway. The fact that they dare try to ruin mother's work is unforgivable."
  163. >Oh yes, absolutist perfect.
  164. "Jewel, you're going to love this. I found the perfect way to help mother."
  165. >You smirk as you turn around. but as you face away from the corner. you notice she had not replied. and upon closer inspection. She was nowhere to be seen.
  166. "...Jewel? Hrn...odd"
  167. >You decide to look around. The hotel room also had a fully stocked kitchen with a bar. But as you looked around there, the room itself, and even the bathroom. She was nowhere to be seen.
  168. "Hide and seek is a stupid game Jewel. And I refuse to play. Just come out so I can explain my plan to you."
  169. >Still nothing.
  170.  
  171. >you suddenly heard a tapping.
  172. >You looked towards the window. and saw a chair. occupied by that silly doll of hers, and a note.
  173. "Hrn?...What's this?"
  174. >You looked upon the note, and noticed it had dabs of water on it. or maybe it was something else.
  175. >You begin to read it.
  176. >"Dear Illustrious, I'm sorry that I annoyed you. And that I made you hate me. I'm sorry I'm not as good as Scrappy at chess. I'm a wasted effort. Just like you said. All I ever do is get in the way. I always make you mad, And no matter how hard I try. I can never be as amazing as you or AJ. I can't do anything to help Mommy. And maybe, keeping Daddy warm and safe when he's sleeping on the couch is just a dumb thing to do too. I decided to run away, so you won't be distracted when you make Mommy proud. I just know whatever you come up with. It'll be great!...I love you, big brother. Please say Hi to everypony for me."
  177. >there wasn't anything more after that.
  178. >you grimaced.
  179. >Surely she wasn't so stupid as to just run off.
  180. >you started to call out her name as you quickly take a closer look around the room. You even stepped out to see a passing bellhop. You asked him if he had seen a little pink filly anywhere. But he just shrugged and said he hadn't seen any filly all day.
  181. >...oh no. If anything happened to her. Mother...She would..
  182. >You rushed back into the room and once again took another look, just to be sure. Any nook and cranny cannot be overlooked.
  183. >But then..you did notice something peculiar.
  184. >The doll on the chair.
  185. >It wasn't there.
  186. >She was still in the room.
  187. "Jewel?! Jewel! come on out this instant! This is not funny! Stop being ridiculous. I don't hate you, you were simply being a nuisance!"
  188.  
  189. >Suddenly, the room started to slowly fill with an eerie green mist. Darkening the room as if it was night.
  190. "What in the hay is this? Jewel...I am not amused. As your big brother. I order you to come out!"
  191. >She must have found some sort of smoke making machine. Obviously some careless moron left it behind.
  192. >"Astounding, surely Jewel would respond favorably to such words..."
  193. >A voice? So...familiar.
  194. >It was coming from on top of the bed.
  195. "who is there? Jewel, if that's you..."
  196. >That voice, it sounded like..you
  197. >Had she become skilled in some sort of ventriloquy?
  198. >you raised your forelegs to pick yourself up to look on top of the bed.
  199. >And sitting on top?
  200. >It was you
  201. >It was you?
  202. >....this doppleganger. It stared at you with an arrogant smirk. As it adjusted it's glasses, it's eyes flashed a quick green.
  203. >"Surprised to see me?"
  204. >But you just narrow your eyes at it.
  205. "No, I'm clearly dreaming. As this is impossible."
  206. >"Dreaming? A sensible hypothesis. Except with one glaring flaw."
  207. >you raise an eyebrow
  208. "And that is?"
  209. >The doppleganger got up, put it's right hoof on your forehead. and pushed you off the front of the bed and onto your back. As the back of your tender head hits the floor.
  210. "G-GYAH! W-what was that for you idiotic...idiotic....wait."
  211. >You registered pain. And yet the cloned figure looked down at you from the edge of the bed with an evil smirk.
  212. >It was real. How?! How could it be real?!
  213. "Impossible! There's no way you can exist."
  214. >"And yet here I am." It said, still arrogant, as it hopped off the bed with a cocky smile. Tilting it's head as it eyed you closely. "You see Illustrious. We're one in the same. And yes, I know the feeling of frustration you have. The fact mother will hate us for losing Crown Jewel."
  215. >you cringed. Mother would be more than furious if she found out.
  216. "....Do you know where she might be?"
  217. >"As if I knew. I only know as much as you do. If you haven't realized it yet. I'm your conscious."
  218. >Seriously?
  219.  
  220. "That's ludicrous. A conscious does not take physical form"
  221. >"I've already proven I exist. So that's a moot point. So let's talk about a more important matter shall we?"
  222. >You started to feel tense. This doppleganger was circling you. that arrogant smirk never leaving it's face.
  223. "..And what's that?
  224. >"Our sister of course. Or rather, the lack thereof. I find it amazing, despite being you, how heartless you can be. You read the note, and yet you still worry about your status with mother."
  225. "that's because Crown Jewel is overreacting. She's probably not too far away. She gets frightened easily. She'll come back. "
  226. >"Will she? She's already been gone for an hour"
  227. >What?
  228. "Excuse me, but that is ridiculous"
  229. >your doppelganger pointed to a wall mounted clock.
  230. >.......oh no, it was right. How?! were you meditating for that long?!
  231. >"Is something wrong?" it said, adjusting it's glasses as it gave you a cocky grin.
  232. "....."
  233. >you couldn't say a word
  234. >"Oh, I get it. Now you care. But you didn't before. Ohhhhh..." Your doppleganger's smile became of an evil sort. "You're thinking about something else, right? Because you don't care about such a waste. Right?"
  235. >Were you truly so heartless? Did you really make her run away just because you refused to play with her? Because she was bad at chess? No,...no..it can't. Your logic wasn't wrong. Surely she realized you only meant she was being too childish.
  236. "She isn't a waste!"
  237. >"Just a nuisance. That's what you're thinking. Right?"
  238. "N...n-no!"
  239. >The doppleganger chuckled "Such a lie."
  240. >You froze
  241. >And you started to turn white
  242. >you were suddenly feeling fear
  243. >worse than meeting any bear.
  244. >Did you hate her?
  245. >Did you hate your own sister?
  246.  
  247. >"Just forget about her. What good is she to you? You could simply act as if somepony foalnapped her. You're smart enough to make sure any injury you may have incurred from such a heinous...say....griffon would be real enough. Ohhh, yes. That would make sure mother would destroy those stupid griffons. Wouldn't it?"
  248. "Shut up!"
  249. >"You'd be her number one for sure. Comforting her all the way as she looks desperately for Jewel. She'd never want you out of her sight after you bravely tried to fight off those nasty griffons."
  250. "SHUT UP!"
  251. >You were losing rational thought. You were scared. Scared for Jewel...and scared of yourself. Was this truly your fault?
  252. >You started to flash back. All the times you avoided her, all the times you wouldn't play with her, all the times you said the things she liked was stupid. Everything.
  253. >You did that. All she wanted was your company.
  254. >"She really was an idiot...wasn't she?"
  255. "SHUT UUUPPP!"
  256. >You lose it. And attack the doppleganger. But somehow, this consciousness of yours was powerful, too powerful, with one swipe of it's hoof. It knocked you into a wall.
  257. >"Pathetic. Just accept it. She'd gone, and it's your fault!"
  258. >.....
  259. >....
  260. >it was right. You could see horrid images of terrible things being done to her. How could you let her walk off? How could you be so cold? How could you say such horrid things?
  261. >She never did anything to hurt you. She just wanted to keep you company.
  262. >She just wanted to brighten your day.
  263. >And you just thought of her as a nuisance.
  264. >....something was going to happen to her.
  265. >Your fault..
  266. >your fault...
  267. >suddenly, you could hear her screaming.
  268. >You look up.
  269. >...that was...
  270. "Jewel!"
  271. >you pathetically reached out to her. But she moved away from you in horror. and screamed as the mist started to envelope her. You could hear her scream for Father, Mother, AJ...
  272. >But not you...
  273. >She was scared of you...
  274. >No..NO
  275. >YOU CAN'T LET THIS BE!
  276. "JEWEL!"
  277.  
  278. >You got up, and rushed into the mist.
  279. >When you tried to desperately attack whatever was there however...
  280. "What in the?"
  281. >There was nothing. As the mist cleared. The only thing that was standing under you was her doll.
  282. >You just stared at it.
  283. >You could feel it. The pain of being a terrible older brother. You could have done better. Give her an undeserved compliment here and there. Keep her company. Try telling a joke.
  284. >Play pretend. There was, in fact, many a topic you could bring up during a tea party.
  285. >You started to produce tears as you picked up the doll and gave it a hug.
  286. "Jewel, I can assure you, when I find you. I will do whatever you wish. I will become the ultimate big brother. Beyond that of even AJ. I promise."
  287. >You would not rest until you found her.
  288. >You kept Chryssy close as you went off to search for your sister. No matter what. You would not give up until you found her. Even if it took forever. You would not rest.
  289.  
  290. >You prepared yourself.
  291. >You took a small saddle bag and filled it with your books. Perfect for subduing larger foes with a swing to the head.
  292. >you held the doll close. And took the note with you, to remind you of your mistake.
  293. >You made your way through the hallways of the hotel. Each hallway was well lit. with beautiful white floral wallpaper and a scent of flowers flowing throughout.
  294. >You wasted no time in your search. Asking every passerby if they had seen your sister. You didn't have a picture of her with you. But you were proficient in describing what she looked like. Especially since nopony could miss a filly with an expensive tiara on their head.
  295. >But as your search became more and more fruitless. Your worry began to grow.
  296. >Surely she wouldn't leave the hotel.
  297. >You knew her enough to know that she wouldn't leave without somepony to protect her. She was much to timid to handle the bustle of a city.
  298. >You started to explore some of the higher floors after failing to locate her on the lower floors. You knew the highest floor had a cider bar. Not a place for foals. But perhaps you could find some information there.
  299. >You climbed the stairs to the highest floor to reach the bar. when you came upon it. There was a set of royal purple doors ahead of you with golden apples as knobs.
  300. >There was a pony guarding the doors, making sure no minors were trying to get through.
  301. >An obstacle. something you had to get past.
  302. >You sat, hiding in the corner, and pondered.
  303. >But as you pondered. A griffon holding a flask came through the doors from the other end. He didn't really say anything to the well dressed bouncer.
  304. >You eyed him suspiciously as he passed by.
  305. >"Heh, this is the stuff the boss ordered. That little filly ain't gonna know what hit her" The griffon said with a chuckle.
  306. >Little filly?
  307. >What does a griffon want with a little filly
  308. >what is that "stuff"?
  309. >......could it be?
  310.  
  311. >your eyes widen when you start to immediately piece together what he could possibly mean.
  312. >A griffon has no business with a little filly
  313. >And your sister, a filly. Went missing a little over an hour ago.
  314. >that griffon's boss must have taken her!
  315. >And unlike AJ. you we're smart enough to tail him carefully to find out where he might be going. Direct confrontation would be ill advised.
  316. >You follow him down a couple of floors. oddly, with relatively ease. the brute wasn't too bright if he wasn't checking his surrounding area for anypony who might be following him.
  317. >Or maybe nopony would think to look around while inside a luxurious hotel.
  318. >But you thought about it.
  319. >Eventually the Griffon reaches his room. Room 1337
  320. >You felt an ominous feeling about that number. A sense that your father was giggling like an idiot about it.
  321. >As he carelessly stepped inside. You slowly followed then moves to the side of his room beside a potted plant.
  322. >He made a turn to the dining room. And when he did. You heard the scream of a filly.
  323. >not just any filly.
  324. >That was Jewel!
  325. >Those curs! They we're doing something terrible to her! Perhaps...they were going to poison her! That's what the "Stuff" must be!
  326. >You slowly moved across the wall, until you were right next to the dining room.
  327. >All you had to do was smash the griffon's or griffons' heads. Grab Jewel. Then run.
  328. >But as you prepped yourself. Jewel started speaking. Not for help, not to tell them how awful they are.
  329. >but instead, she sounded absolutely elated.
  330. >"You really got it! You're amazing!" Jewel said
  331. >A griffon, not the one you heard, says in a calm and good natured way "Well, what did I tell you? I told you Gasper would get it for ya. Wasn't that hard anyways, was it Gasper?"
  332.  
  333. >"Easy peasy Boss. But what exactly are ya gonna make with that Jewel?" That voice you recognized. That was the voice of the Griffon you followed.
  334. >"I'm going to make tea for the three of us, silly." She giggled "I hope you both like it. I'm really really good at making tea."
  335. >"Too right. You know Jewel, nopony has ever done anything nice like this for us before." The "boss" Griffon said
  336. >You hazarded a look. And saw Jewel being gently scratched under her neck by a huge burly griffon with a suit and bald head. His feathers were blue. As was his suit. The other one, who was obviously Gasper. Wore nothing but a scarf, and seemed scruffy looking.
  337. >Jewel giggled from the physical attention, but then frowned when he moved his claw away. "Nopony? Y-you mean. Nopony has ever made you tea or anything Mr.Geraldo?"
  338. >The "boss". Geraldo, gave her a nod. "Yep, not too respected among the rich due to my way of speaking and this achievement of shine right here on me head" He points to his bald spot.
  339. >That just made Jewel frown all the more "I respect you though. And I don't think you look too bad. I think it makes you look cute!" Her frown turns to a pure, good hearted grin, tilting her head as she titters happily.
  340. >"Awww, Jewel.You ain't gotta say that. I know it looks like a ugly pig up there." Geraldo said as he looked away with a frown.
  341. >"But I'm telling the truth! Really!...hmmm" She tapped at her chin as she thought, then grinned "I know!"
  342. >"What do ya know?" Gasper asked, curious.
  343. >"You'll see! You're both going to smile. Promise." She said, proud of her plan
  344. >She then looked to Geraldo and asked him to lean his head close to her. When he did. She gave it a kiss,
  345. >Geraldo seemed stunned from that as she cheerfully smiled "See? If you were ugly. then a girl wouldn't kiss you. And I kissed you! So you're ok! Isn't that great?"
  346.  
  347. >Gasper started to tear up, taking his scarf and wiping his eyes. "awwww, boss. I don't think I ever saw nothin so beautiful. It's like a fairy tale, it is."
  348. >"Come off it Gasper" Geraldo said with a stern voice. But then he turned to Jewel, giving her a look that suggested that whatever rock hard heart he had, had been pierced. "You know Jewel, yer a special little filly you are. The fact that your brother can say things like that to you. Well, let's just say if he was my boy. He'd be getting quite the whippin, he'd be"
  349. >You started to understand what was going on.
  350. >And you started to feel crushed. She had told them about what you had said to her.
  351. >She ran away because of all those awful things you said.
  352. >And they must have found her wandering around. And took her in to take care of her until mother arrives.
  353. >She must have hated you. You could only imagine all the things she must have said.
  354. >"A whipping? No no, I didn't say those things because my brother is bad. He was just being...well...himself." She stopped for a moment, and took a breath "My brother? He's very smart...and I'm not. But I want to be as smart as him one day. So I can play chess with him. And help him with his experiments. I want to be a sister he can be proud of. I want him to look at me like he does mommy. I love both my big brothers. and I just want to be the best little sister I can be! But I'm not there yet...So I can understand why he gets annoyed at me sometimes.. But one day, it won't be like that anymore. You'll see"
  355. >"Never have I met as pure a soul as you Jewel, me boys downtown could learn a thing or two from you" Geraldo said as he turns his head, to wipe a tear secretly from his eye.
  356. >The boys down town? The griffons mother went to sort? Was he the boss of them all? Then Gasper must be his foreman. Mother must have not realized they were also at the hotel. As they hadn't mentioned running into her yet.
  357.  
  358. >Jewel just looked at him inquisitively, and came to the same conclusion you did as she questioned the about it.
  359. >But you? Those words...
  360. >That was nothing like the letter you read.
  361. >In fact, when you went to check the letter again. It was gone.
  362. >It wasn't anywhere on you.
  363. >Was that too, a hallucination?
  364. >She didn't hate you at all. And still spoke highly of you despite how you treated her.
  365. >If you hallucinated all of that. Then your guilt truly must have been heavy. Your crime, truly unforgivable.
  366. >You started to cry. Hugging onto her doll once again. You came to realize that had you lost her. That if you truly lost her. You would be no better....no..worse than those you looked down upon. That if you had messed up, your sister would suffer a fate she didn't deserve.
  367. >You realized. That despite the way you treated her. That you loved her.
  368. >and that you were lucky that these griffons were agreeable. And kept her safe. Much better than you could have.
  369.  
  370. >"Oh oh! Did you speak to my mommy? She was really upset about this deal thingy that didn't go like she wanted it to" Jewel said, with curiousness in her tone.
  371. >Gasper and Geraldo looked around with nervous looks. Rubbing the back of their necks, as if they had done something dishonest.
  372. >"Ah, yer mum. the deal. Right..." Geraldo meekly says in a low voice. As if he didn't want to say anything heinous in front of Jewel.
  373. >"Is something the matter Mr.Geraldo?" Jewel looked into his eyes. He found it very difficult to look back into hers.
  374. >"Ahrm, well, my little filly. if yer thinkin' about how....how..." When he looked back into her eyes, he stopped speaking, and flinched.
  375. >"You wouldn't do anything dishonest. Would you Mr.Geraldo? Mr.Gasper?" Jewel's eyes began to shimmer in sadness. she didn't want to find out that her new friends were doing anything bad.
  376. >Gasper covered his eyes as he he slammed his face on the table. "Boss, ah can't look at er. That's the face of an angel, it is"
  377. >"Oh oh! I like angels! My dolly Chryssy is my guardian angel. She protects me and tells me really good advice. She's the bestest angel ever!" Jewel says with a giggle.
  378. >"Cripes boss! Me 'eart can't take it!" Gasper was literally holding on to his chest.
  379. >Geraldo sighed. and looked to Jewel. Giving up on whatever thoughts he had. "Jewel, it'd make you happy if I just made yer mum happy. wouldn't it?"
  380. >Jewel nodded.
  381. >Geraldo just put his talons onto his forehead and sighed as he leaned forward "So much fer that bonus. Gasper, when we're done here. tell the boys we are goin with the lady's plan. Oy, who would av' ever thought i'd waste an opportunity like this"
  382. >Jewel didn't seem to fully understand what was going on. But she got up from her chair to make the two griffons some tea. "You two are really nice. I don't want to make you wait for the tea so I'll make it now! I promise it'll be really good!"
  383.  
  384. >Gasper had to clench his talons at his chest "Oy' boss. just put on me grave that I went down fightin'
  385. >You went wide eyed. She...she managed to solve the issue.
  386. >Not with a well thought out plan. Not by crushing the opposition. But by being gentle, and nice.
  387. >...She wasn't the failure.
  388. >You were.
  389. >How could you be such a fool...
  390. >No wonder Mother didn't want your help. You'd be useless.
  391. >You should just go. That'd probably be for the best. She'd be ok with them.
  392. >You turn around to make your leave. And, being caught up in emotional feelings you rarely feel. Smack your head directly into a small table with a vase on it.
  393. >You yell out in pain as you bounce backwards along the floor. landing on your back.
  394. "Ugghhhhhh..."
  395. >"Ey' boss. Look, there's a spy in our mitts" Gasper points to you. Making you reach for your saddle bag in your daze.
  396. "Stay back! I know how to use this as a lethal weapon."
  397. >Geraldo raises his head to look at you. Then raises an eyebrow "Tis a colt Gasper. Ey! what do ya think yer doin' bargin' into our room mate. Ain't no ponies allowed in 'ere"
  398. >"Huh? oh oh! Wait!" Jewel's attention is also caught by your blunder. She rushes up to you and looks over you as you lay on your back. "This is my brother! Illustrious...what are you doing here? Are you ok?...do you need ice...I promise not to make it too heavy for you." Her voice started to immediately become frail and timid.
  399. >It made you look away in shame.
  400. "Jewel..I'm alright. And thank you...and..."
  401. >You looked to the side. To see the doll had fallen upright. next to you.
  402. "...and....I'd like to apologize"
  403. >"A-apologize? F-for what?" She seemed genuinely confused. And yet, she seemed to be waiting. yearning in anticipation.
  404. "For being a terrible fool. And a brother most inadequate. Everything I said? I didn't mean it...or I did mean it. But came to realize they were only the words of the biggest idiot in Equestria."
  405.  
  406. >"Who's that? who would make you say those things?" Jewel said, upset with whoever she thought made you say hurtful words. Despite that not being the case.
  407. "N-no no. I'm the biggest idiot in Equestria"
  408. >"No you're not. You're super smart!...remember?" She didn't seem to realize what you were getting at.
  409. "....I suppose. Look, what I'm getting at is that I'm terribly sorry. Very VERY sorry. That I have mistreated you. I should have treated you with more respect and love, like a big brother should. I..I had a fearful vision. And I fear it may be true. Please.."
  410. >You rolled onto your stomach. then pathetically leaned your head on her chest as you began to sob.
  411. "Please do not run away. I promise, I shall do better as your big brother."
  412. >"Big Brother..." Jewel started to tear up. and hugged onto your "Don't cry...please? I knew it was just you being you. I'm sorry I got upset. But I was never going to run away. Why would you think that? If I ran away...everypony would cry. You're crying. Please don't cry"
  413. >But you couldn't stop. It seemed the note really was a terrible hallucination. You were so scared. That she hated you. That she really did want to run away. Your glasses fell to the ground as you just cuddled close to her. your tears never stopping.
  414. "I can't. I can't do that! I must improve myself. I must show you that I can indeed be as good a brother as you expect me to be"
  415.  
  416. >Jewel moved back just a tad to gently grab your face with her hooves. so she can look at you eye to eye. Her eyes were also teary eyed. But she gave you the sunniest smile she could. "But you're already the brother I expect you to be. You're smart! You're good at chess! And you always help me with my homework when I ask. I know the only reason you get angry at me is because I do dumb things sometimes. But I was never mad at you. Or thought you were a bad brother. You're my big brother. And I'll love you no matter what...So no more crying...ok? Big Smiles! See?" Jewel pointed to her teary eyed grin.
  417. >It...was so absurd.
  418. >So absurd...that you couldn't help but grin yourself. Despite still feeling crushed.
  419. "S-so...you really forgive me?"
  420. >She giggled as she hugged you again "Of course! I'll always forgive you! You're my big brother and oooohhh!"
  421. >She notices Chryssy on the ground. and hugs you tighter. "You brought Chryssy with you! See? you are a good big brother. You brought my dolly back to me! Did she protect you? I bet she did. That's why you found me so fast. She guided you, right?"
  422. >Her words...it pierced your heart. All you wanted to do was make her feel content.
  423. "She did.She is rather amazing"
  424. >You lied...or you thought you lied. Part of you felt there was some truth to her words. But you had no idea why.
  425. >"Isn't she? She's even been helping me with chess too! That's how I was able to play at all. She taught me to remember a song so I know how all the pieces worked. I'm still learning a lot and she's very very patient with me. So I know, someday soon, we'll be able to play together and I'll do good enough that you won't get mad at me." She explains. Was your irritation and anger that much of a norm for her?
  426. "No Jewel. You needn't worry. Never again will I be angry at you for such trivial things. I was the one who was wrong. And I will work on myself to make sure it never ever happens again."
  427.  
  428. >...you stop, then give her a hard stare
  429. "You ask too much...."
  430. >She just puffs up her cheeks and gives you a harder stare. Before breaking up from it with a giggle and booping your nose.
  431. "Ok....but you love Daddy and AJ...right?"
  432. >She looks at you. curious.
  433. >You roll your eyes
  434. "...yes yes. I do, despite how they are. And Grandpa too...so don't ask."
  435. >"Yay!" Jewel hugs you "I knew you did!....oh...I was making tea for my new friends. Do you want to have some too?"
  436. >You look over at the griffons. Who, at this point. Had broken down in tears from the tender moment.
  437. "....Yes, I'd love some tea. And I'd love to make some wonderful chit chat."
  438. >You do a gentlecolt's bow
  439. "it'd be my honor, m'lady, to attend such a prestigious affair."
  440. >Jewel squeed and held her cheeks. She found it all too happy and adorable. "You're so great Illustrious!"
  441. >You were, to that there was no doubt.
  442. >The only thing that irked you however. Was her mention of the doll. But then again, after having such hallucinations. You realized to think anything of it would be pure paranoia. So you let it go.
  443. >And so you joined the griffons and Jewel. And came to realize that despite being the smartest in the room. That they all had interesting topics to talk about. Apparently Geraldo used to be a bounty hunter. and Gasper cleared areas of dangerous creatures. But had both long since retired into landscaping and construction.
  444. >And Jewel? She just treated it like pretend. And you obliged her. If it meant her being happy. Then you'd do it for her. Especially after seeing how impressive she truly is, what, with the "business" chat she had with the griffons.
  445.  
  446. >You knew mother would be proud when she found out.
  447. >And you'd make sure to give Jewel all the credit as well. As she deserved it.
  448. >Though....you would have to talk to Jewel about omitting details about your behavior,
  449. >You didn't want mother finding out.
  450. >"Illustrious, look! I can get this spoon to stick on my nose! See, See!" Jewel breaks your thoughts as she points to the spoon on her nose
  451. >you just smiled. finding humor in her absurd behavior. In fact...
  452. >You grab the spoon and begin to try to put it on your nose.
  453. "Look Jewel, I too can..."
  454. >It falls off.
  455. >..mnnn
  456. >you try again
  457. "I too...mnnnnn"
  458. >You fail again
  459. >you try once more
  460. "I.....GRRRR! WHY WON'T YOU STICK YOU ACCURSED SILVER UTENCIL!"
  461. >You throw the spoon at the wall.
  462. >And when you look around, you notice the griffons and Jewel just staring at you. making you blush in embarrassment and slink down on your chair.
  463. >Jewel grabs her spoon, still saying nothing, and sticks it on your nose.
  464. >And it sticks...
  465. "...H-how did you?"
  466. >" You have to lick the spoon first for it to work." Jewel smiled at you, with innocence
  467. >Amazing....you had no idea. It should have been so obvious. But you failed to notice her lick her own spoon.
  468. "Quite interesting...You are a truly amazing little sister, Jewel"
  469. >"So are you Illustrious! You're super great!" She says as she gives you another warm adorable hug.
  470. >Yes, everything...would be fine.
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