Zephyr Part 8
Jul 30th, 2012
- It all happens again. The p0nies, the hands. This time you can feel hot breath on your neck before the hands begin to pull and twist.
- You wake with a start, jerking around a bit before realizing that you're safely in bed. Your movement hasn't roused Autumn at all, and you realize that the breathing in your dream must have been Autumn's. Your movement did get someone's attention though, as a barely awake Master rolls over, flops an arm onto Autumn, and pulls the two of you over to him. Master murmurs out "s'okay" before falling back to sleep. Your eyes dart between the window and the door for a bit, feeding off irrational fear, until the shared warmth of your two bedmates calms you back down. Caught in the middle of a sandwich, there's nothing for you to do but relax and go back to sleep. This time there are no nightmares.
- An intoxicating smell pulls you back into the waking world, though you're not entirely willing to give up on sleep at the moment. A single blearily open eye informs you that Master seems to have gotten up, but Autumn's still got both forehooves wrapped around you with her face buried in the pillows.
- Taking a moment to admire exactly how goddamned cute Autumn is, you catch another whiff of what woke you up in the first place. It fills the air, sweet and hint of something fruity, and you know with absolute certainty what's happened.
- After gently nudging Autumn awake and letting her come to the same glorious realization you have, the two of you set off toward the kitchen with zeal approximating children on christmas.
- Master seems genuinely surprised at the two p0nies scampering through the house, and the two of you hold nothing back. Stumbling on the stairs, sliding on hardwood floors, and finally coming to a dead stop on the floor in front of him. He breaks out in an honest laugh, and serves up the food with a grin.
- "If I'd known you'd be so excited, I'd have done this sooner. Dig in."
- You do so with gusto, pausing to consider that you haven't eaten anything but fruits, veggies and grain since being changed. The blueberries add a pop your new tastebuds savor, and Master seems to be the type to put a little vanilla in the batter. They are delectable. As you chew, you contemplate the situation. You and Autumn are seated on the floor near Master's feet as he sits at the table, forming an idyllic vision of a master/pet relationship. Should this bother you, too? Except for yesterday's awfulness, your days have largely consisted of being fed well, treated well, and, ah, getting laid. Despite dehumanizing you at every possible turn, Master hasn't asked a thing of you except for obedience. Gizmo's words come back to you- "no more work, just a master to love and get loved by!".
- That's the life he's trying to give you, and the life he hopes to have given to all the others he changed. But you didn't want this before he took you. It's a fair bet to say none of his p0nies really did. If all of the buyers really were as nice as Jake, or Gizmo's owners, how ethically terrible were the things he'd done? This is just too difficult to wrap your head around.
- Food eaten, the three of you lounge around for a few minutes as Master sips at his coffee. Autumn lays herself down on the floor perpendicular to you, and you let out a small "oomph" as her head flops onto your flank. You whip your head about to complain;
- "Hey! Mind telling me why you're using my butt as a pillow?"
- She gives you a cheeky grin before replying unapologetically; "I just wanna see what sleeping on a cloud feels like."
- You're utterly baffled by what she said until you manage to put two and two together. Cloud... Zephyr... Cutie mark... Oh goddamnit.
- You throw her an annoyed "Really funny.", but don't do anything about kicking her off. Her head isn't that heavy and you've apparently got enough padding back there that it's no big deal. Did Master have to design the junk in your trunk?
- You're about to ask him when he rises from his seat.
- "You two feel like going outside?"
- Autumn removes herself from you in a flash, and you're on your hooves in a few seconds. She's always excited to go out, and you're quickly developing a similar enthusiasm for stretching your legs. If there's one thing to be said about being a p0ny, it's that you have energy like never before. Maybe your metabolism is different now?
- You do realize with some chagrin that going out isn't even about relieving yourself anymore. It's still a matter of substantial embarrassment, but you've been forced to use the litter boxes more than a few times by now. It's just... fun? That's all you've got.
- Master and Autumn are way ahead of you. You resolve to at least go the rest of the morning without any more angst about the transformation. There's nothing you can do about it.
- You stop at the door, expecting to be leashed before exiting, but Master just ruffles your mane and steps out. He's really going to trust you off a leash? If you run, he wont be able to sell you...
- But you have no idea where to go from these woods, and being seen by any normal person is too risky. If you could get to Jake's place you'd be golden, but that may as well be another planet right now. Maybe he thinks you wouldn't run, but he has to know you can't run, unless you want to live in the woods like an animal for the rest of your life.
- You cross the threshold and trot up behind Master. Autumn seems to be doing a lap of the yard, and you're about to join her when Master turns to face you.
- "I know this has been hard for you, but you've been a very good girl in spite of it all. I'm going to let you try to fly, but I want you to promise me you wont try to run off somewhere. These woods go on for miles, and you could get hurt out there by yourself."
- He's going to let you try? Based on his last sentence, the logic is solid. He doesn't think you could get anywhere from here even if you could. The most he seems to think you could do is get lost or hurt in these mountains. He's probably right, too. You've never even been hiking for more than a few hours at a time.
- "So you're not sure if I really can fly?"
- "No. Most of the pegasi to come before you had wings just for show, but the... man... who ordered you seemed to have a real interest in a flying p0ny. Light bones, light musculature, large wings. If anyone could pull it off, it would be you."
- Of course the bastard wanted you to be able to fly. What's the point in ruining your wings if they weren't good for anything to start? Light bones, light musculature... flight probably wasn't what he had in mind when he thought of those.
- "So, are you gonna try or what?"
- Master's input thankfully interrupts your train of thought, allowing you to focus on something besides snapping bones. You quickly scope out the yard, looking for a suitable launching point. The driveway is flat and runs a while, but the grass next to it has a gentle downward slope. You ponder for a few moments before recalling the Wright brother's first flight, and trot to the "top" of the slope.
- You take a few moments to steel yourself with deep, steady breaths. You prime yourself into a good running position and extend your wings fully, when you realize you have no goddamned idea how to actually go about this. Start running, then flapping? Or the other way around? Should you hold your wings out until you've got speed?
- You settle for a few experimental wing flaps to see how much force you can get out of them. Repeating the motion fluidly is a bit tricky, but once you've got them going you do feel some lift. They're not enough to just take off whenever, but you might really be able to do this. You try to remember everything you can about how flight works, and decide to work your wings at an angle that should generate lift and thrust when you run. You get back into running position, and as Master and Autumn perk up to watch, you begin your sprint. You get good forward momentum from your snap, but your wings flap erratically and you begin to stumble as your coordination falls apart. It's like trying to do that stupid belly rub-pat yourself on the head thing from when you were a kid, only this could break your neck! You manage to avoid eating dirt, but this attempt ends unsuccessfully. Master looks like he's about to make a comment, but you're already on your way back to your starting point.
- You're light, you're fast, and you've got big wings. All you need is the focus to pull it off.
- You can do this.
- It's been at least an hour. You've been through two dozen aborted attempts, and you've eaten dirt on half of those runs. Master's been asking if you want to try again tomorrow. If he orders you to pack it in, you'll do it, but until then you're going to keep going. You've never wanted anything more than this in your whole life. You've got the lift, you're sure of it. It's just getting the speed. You're going to fly, damn it!
- You fall into your running position, muscles tense and wings flaring up, and take one heavy, deep breath.
- You spring forward with everything you've got and take off running down the hill. Your wings pump furiously, scooping air and forcing it under you. Blood is pounding in your ears and your lungs are on fire, but you're so close! You let your eyes shut for a moment, whole body straining with effort as you approach the point where the slope levels off.
- All of a sudden your forehooves find no purchase on the soil, and with a few more desperate wing strokes your rear legs are off the ground. You try to extend them as straight as you can, and throw everything your back muscles can give you into your wings.
- You hear Autumn cheering over the wind in your ears, and butterflies dance in your stomach when you open your eyes.
- Your forelegs are stretched in front of you, and while your wings feel like they're going to fall off if you keep this up much longer a look down confirms it.
- You're off the ground!
- You can fly!
- You're unstable in the air and struggling to stay up, but here you are, a couple yards off the ground. This is incredible! ...At this juncture it occurs to you that you have absolutely no idea how to land without hurting yourself. You fight panic for a second and decide you're going to need some help.
- With titanic effort you manage to roll a bit to one side and turn yourself back around to face your audience. Your wings are going to hurt like hell later, but now you're gliding toward Master. The look on his face seems to be a mix of exuberance and surprise. You begin to rear up and flap straight down, in the hopes of coming in gently.
- "Catch me!"
- It takes him a second to process what you've asked and get himself ready, but you've slowed down enough that he only stumbles a bit when you hit his chest. His arms wrap around you, and you're laughing hysterically, high on adrenalin and the feeling of being airborne.
- "I can FLY! Thankyouthankyouthankyou!"
- You're wrapped him in another foreleg hug, nuzzling his shoulder all while teary-eyed and shouting with joy. He's laughing too, and Autumn's seems to be jumping up and down and shouting. Master is the first to regain control of himself.
- "What are you thanking me for?"
- For a second you're not really sure yourself. For a few perfect moments in the air, you couldn't have cared less about who you used to be or why this is all wrong. You can't be certain, but you're pretty sure you just thanked him for doing this to you.
- He's been nothing but good to you.
- He's a bad person.
- He saved you from a man who wanted to mutilate you!
- He was going to sell you to him in the first place!
- Oh, the hell with it!
- Even Master seems taken aback when you plant your lips firmly on his.
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