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(H.E.R.O) Genisis

By SaltAnon
Created: 8th December 2020 05:14:15 AM

  1.  
  2.  
  3. >You woke up gasping for air.
  4. >It was that damned dream again.
  5. >You rubbed your hooves into your eyes and looked down at your sheets. Covered in sweat.
  6. >Wait.
  7. >*sniff*
  8. >Well, mostly sweat.
  9. >Really? that nightmare wasn’t that scary...was it?
  10. >You throw your sheets off and attempt to go clean your self off only to fall onto the floor.
  11. >The rest of your limbs haven’t woken up yet.
  12. “Oof, ow!”
  13. >You rubbed your foreleg as you picked yourself up and hobbled to the bathroom.
  14. >After a quick shower to clean yourself you attend to your sheets.
  15. >After they were stripped from your mattress you glance at the clock on the wall.
  16. “Five o’ clock. *sigh* Well, no since going back to bed I guess.”
  17. >After throwing your soiled bedding into your hamper you went to go cook some breakfast.
  18. >You sat next to the kitchen window overlooking the street outside and rubbed your temples, still not recovered from he nightmare you had just been through.
  19. >This was the second night in a row you’ve had it.
  20. >Usually it only occurred occasionally. Only happening once or twice a week but not one after another. And they were beginning to get worse.
  21. “Maybe Acorn Bits was right.”
  22. >You took a slow slip from your mug, making sure you didn’t burn yourself on the dark liquid pouring down your throat.
  23. “I should visit a therapist.”
  24. >But you really didn’t want to.
  25. >You were too busy at the zoo to go and talk to somepony about your nightmares.
  26. >You’d thought you could just sleep them off, take a vacation and forget about it.
  27. >Work could be troublesome from time to time.
  28. >But they followed you there as well, and weighed heavy on your time off like you were pulling one of those carts of apples the farmers back home would bring into the market.
  29. >You should check up on the Apple family.
  30. >You haven’t seen Pear butter since you left for the city.
  31. >You hoped she was doing alright.
  32. >The Oranges lived here in Manehatten, so you could always talk to them you suppose?
  33. >A light shined through your window and you squinted.
  34. >It was finally sunrise, you’d need to be at work soon.
  35. >You ate the rest of your breakfast and slid your khaki vest on.
  36. > It matched well with your beige coat and blonde mane.
  37. “Maybe Zoro will help me feel better.”
  38. >You say with a half grin as you make your way out of your apartment.
  39. ~~
  40. >You stood on a platform.
  41. >A class of little fillies surrounded you, watching attentively, a few apathetic, most were horrified to come close to you.
  42. “Now come on, don’t be shy. Zoro, is well trained.”
  43. >A little filly calls out in concern, her hoof in the air.
  44. >”But what if he throws his dookie at me!”
  45. >One of her teachers nudged her and gave her a look.
  46. >You just giggled.
  47. “Don’t worry. She’s trained. And besides, the Chimps here are the ones who, eheh, throw dung. Zoro here is a well behaved little marmoset.”
  48. >The monkey in question was gnawing on a carrot you had given it earlier.
  49. >You run your hoof along her back as she sat on her perch.
  50. “Isn’t that right Zoro?”
  51. >Zoro leaned into and accepted your affection still nibbling on her carrot.
  52. “See? She’s harmless. Now come on, who’s brave enough to come and pet her?”
  53. >You look into the crowd expectantly.
  54. >One colt finally raised his hoof.
  55. >”I-I’m not scared.”
  56. “That’s great! Come on up, be careful not to startle her though.”
  57. >The small colt walked up timidly, slowly reaching out his hoof.
  58. >Zoro just stared at him while she continued to chew on her snack.
  59. >The poor kid’s hoof shook as it made contact with the top of the monkey’s head.
  60. >Zoro closed her eyes and leaned her head into the gesture and continuing to nom on her snack.
  61. >After a few seconds the colt began to laugh.
  62. >”Heh, haha! H-hey, she’s pretty cute!”
  63. >You beamed at this.
  64. “See? She’s not so scary yea?”
  65. >”Haha yea! She’s actually pretty cool!”
  66. >Seeing their classmate finally petting the marmoset, one after another, fillies and colts began to get up and were forming a line around Zoro so they could get turns petting her.
  67. >All the while you were keeping a close eye, making sure none of the children pet her too rough or startled the poor simian.
  68. >The rest of the two hours you had with the class was spent showing them tricks and teaching them trivia about marmosets and other primates.
  69. >One of the fillies asked about your cutie mark.
  70. >”Miss Zookeeper? What does your cutie mark have to do with animals?”
  71. >The same teacher from before nudged the child and glared at her for the rude comment. Though you didn't mind.
  72. >You looked back at your flank and smiled.
  73. “Well, yes actually. Heh, and it isn’t a ‘blob’, it’s the paw print of a primate. I got it when I was nursing one back to health. Zoro’s grandma actually!”
  74. >The children oo’s and aww’d at the explanation.
  75. >Another classmate raised their hoof.
  76. >”Miss zookeeper, what other kinds of monkeys do you like?”
  77. “Well, all of them actually. I’ve taken care of apes, simians, lemurs, you name it. Also, just for further reference, I DO have a name.”
  78. >”O-oh! I’m sorry.”
  79. “Oh you’re fine. It’s Goodall! Mane Goodall.”
  80. >”Oh! Thank you Miss Goodall!”
  81. “And thank you for asking! Not too many of you students care to ask anymore!”
  82. >You carried on for the next twenty minutes asking questions until your time was finally up and the students had to go see the rest of the exhibits.
  83. >Just in time as you began to feel your stomach grumbling.
  84. “Come on Zoro, you’ve been munching on fruits and nuts all day. Let’s get you back to your habitat so I can eat.”
  85. >Zoro hopped onto your withers and hugged your neck as you left the platform to bring her back to her friends.
  86. ~~
  87. >You ate in silence in the workers lounge.
  88. >Conveniently up high in a sort of watch tower over looking the whole zoo, and the forest on the edge of town it sat next too.
  89. >You looked over the dandelion sandwich you had brought from home.
  90. >Inspecting every crumb in the bread as you meticulously chewed your food, lost in thought from what happened this morning.
  91. >It was always the same.
  92. >The running, the sweat, the dark night.
  93. >It felt like you were reliving a faint memory rather than a nightmare.
  94. >But none of it was like what happened two months ago.
  95. >You could only remember one of the chimps escaping into the woods nearby. Sultan.
  96. >You running through the damp shrubbery to catch up to the ape, and then, well it was hazy from there.
  97. >All you could remember these strange noises and silhouettes.
  98. >You swear they...
  99. >A loud thud snapped you from your contemplation, causing you to choke on the masticated food still in your mouth.
  100. >”HEY GOODIE!”
  101. >You pounded on your chest, desperately trying to get the food lodged in your throat out.
  102. >Finally, with a forceful whack, the half eaten sandwich flew out of your maw and into the mare’s face who had, quite literally, nearly scared you to death.
  103. >”AH! Mane! Ewwwww!”
  104. >Still coughing and gasping for air you raise your head and glare at the pony who was trying to get your lunch out of her eyes.
  105. “ACORN! WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU! I almost died!”
  106. >”Hey, hey, I’m sorry! You were just alone in here and were very quiet. I wanted to see if you were all right!”
  107. “You do that by scaring me and making me almost choke on my lunch?”
  108. >”I, well, no! I didn’t mean to do that! I’m sorry.”
  109. >Finally catching your breath, you rub your forehead and gain composure.
  110. “Look just, please, don’t scare me like that again.”
  111. >”Okay, I’m sorry. I just wanted to check on you to see if you were okay. How was your show with the kids?”
  112. >You let out a small sigh.
  113. “It was fine I suppose. It took some time for the students to get used to Zoro. But eventually they did, and they loved her.”
  114. >”Hehe, who wouldn’t?”
  115. “That’s what I’m saying! She is such a sweetheart!”
  116. >”Heh, yea...hey, by the way.”
  117. >You cock your head, your coworkers face turns to that of concern.
  118. >”You look really tired. How well have you been sleeping lately?”
  119. “Uhhm, I’m not tired, I just woke up very early this morning and couldn’t get back to bed.”
  120. >Acorn Bits placed her hoof on your shoulder and looked you down.
  121. >”Goodie, you haven’t been sleeping well for a while. For almost a month and a half as a matter of fact!”
  122. >She pouted.
  123. >”Have you gone to a therapist like I’ve asked?”
  124. >You swipe her hoof away and groan.
  125. “I’ve looked into it. They’re just too expensive, and honestly, I have to focus on taking care of the monkeys.”
  126. >Acorn just sighed, a disappointed look on her face.
  127. >”Mane, I care about you. Your work shouldn’t be interfering with your health.”
  128. “No, really I’m fine, I’m-”
  129. >”Something happened the night Sultan got out didn’t it? We got him back, and he’s fine, so something happened.”
  130. “I...what? No, nothing happened. Nothing I know of anyways. I was worried for the chimp, yea, but I went into the woods, got him, and brought him back.”
  131. >”And that’s ALL that happened?”
  132. “Well, I remember looking for him in some bushes deep in the woods, and then a fall, and it was sort of hazy from there, but it was a long day of work. I don’t remember a lot from that day. Point is, found him in that cave, gave him a banana, and he followed me back.”
  133. >Your friend stared at you for a few seconds, reading your face to see if you were being honest.
  134. >”You suuuuure?”
  135. “What? Do you not believe me? Why would I make something up?”
  136. >”No, no, I believe you Goodie! But, maybe you should consider still visiting a therapist.”
  137. “What?! Why?”
  138. >”There maybe something that happened you just don’t remember?”
  139. “That doesn’t make any sense, if I don’t remember it, then WHY would it be affecting me?”
  140. >Acorn shrugged.
  141. >”I don’t know? But who knows, it could be some deep subconscious problem you don’t know about. Something you’ve repressed?”
  142. >You remember reading something like that a while back when you were taking the psychoanalyst course at university.
  143. >But nothing happened that night that was really life changing.
  144. >And you had a very good life growing up.
  145. >The most traumatic experience you had was when you walked in on your parents doing the uh...thing that grown up ponies do when they really like each other.
  146. “Well what about the animals?”
  147. >”Your monkeys will be fine. You aren’t the only pony working in that exhibit and we can find someone to fill in for you while you’re gone.”
  148. >You groaned and slumped your head down on the table.
  149. >It was all just too out of the way.
  150. >In truth you didn’t think a therapist would work, and you were too dedicated to taking care of Zoro and the others to take any time away from it.
  151. >You could feel the gentle petting on your head from your friend’s hoof.
  152. >”Please Mane, it’ll be good for you. I promise we’ll take good care of Zoro.”
  153. >You looked up and then finally shook your head.
  154. “Fine. I’ll go and see somepony about this.”
  155. >Acorn beamed and pulled you in for a hug.
  156. >”Good for you Goodie! You’re finally seeing reason.”
  157. “I get say in who replaces me and who takes care of Zoro though!”
  158. >Your friend chuckles.
  159. >”Well duh silly, you’re in charge of the primate exhibits.”
  160. “And you’ll get off my back if I do this?”
  161. >”Yes.”
  162. “Fine. I’ll see one tomorrow then.”
  163. >”Good! And I’ll leave you to your lunch. I have Squirrel droppings to clean.”
  164.  
  165. ~~~~
  166.  
  167. >You were sat down, reading a magazine in the waiting room of the shrink’s office.
  168. >You let out an exasperated sigh and flipped through the pages.
  169. >More boring drama, something about celebrity couples cheating on each other...again.
  170. >An up and coming star slept with a group of zebras behind her husbands back.
  171. >Other than the horrible unfaithfulness her music was what most ponies knew her for.
  172. >She seemed to be very popular among your friends but you really weren’t all that interested in that kind of music to be honest.
  173. >A bell rang out.
  174. >”Mane Goodall?”
  175. “Oh, yes! That would be me!”
  176. >”You may see Mrs. Anima now.”
  177. >You placed the magazine down and walked through a small door to the back.
  178. >You really didn’t want to be here. Though, you might as well try.
  179. >Several water faucets and fountains lined the thin walls of the hall way.
  180. >The white noise let a strange calm wash over you.
  181. >Relaxed, but still a little nervous.
  182. >They were probably here to help ease the nerves of the clients who come in with more irritable nerves?
  183. >Maybe they were to help cover the sound of conversation in the various rooms so that ponies may have a better sense of privacy?
  184. >You weren’t sure but it was all welcome.
  185. >At the end of the hall you stopped at the door labeled “Mrs. Anima Hoof” and knocked on the door.
  186. >You could hear hurried hoof steps rush to open the door.
  187. >An older gray maned unicorn mare pokes her head from behind the door.
  188. >”Shhh. You don’t have to knock.”
  189. >She placed a hoof over her mouth and scolded you in a hushed tone.
  190. >”Please come in, come in.”
  191. >You attempt to stammer out an apology.
  192. “I-I’m sorry, I didn’t mean-”
  193. >”No, no it’s fine, you’re okay.”
  194. >She closed the door softly, making sure she doesn’t disturb any of the other clients in the small building.
  195. >”Sorry hun. We deal with anxious ponies who get startled very easy here. The associate pony at the desk should’ve told you that.”
  196. “Oh, no I’m sorry I didn’t-”
  197. >”Oh hun shush, you’re fine, if the mare at the desk didn’t tell you or you forgot it’s fine. We just want to be considerate to the other ponies looking for help.”
  198. “I understand, it won’t happen again.”
  199. >The old mare went over to her desk to grab a clipboard and quill and sat on a small couch in the room.
  200. >”Thank you. Now you aaaare, Mane Goodall correct?”
  201. “Yes ma’am.”
  202. >”Great, I’m Mrs. Anima Hoof, but you may call me Ani if that makes you comfortable. You can drop the formalities.”
  203. “Well...that sounds fine, thank you.”
  204. >”Great, and if you’ll have a seat on the couch opposite of mine we will start in a moment Mane. Oh, do you mind if I call you Mane? Is there anyway you’d like me to address you?”
  205. “My friends call me Goodie on occasion.”
  206. >”We’ll go with that then. Please have a seat, enjoy some of the fruit or candy if you wish, I also have some water, tea, coffee, and juice if that fancies you hun. Just get comfortable and let me write some stuff down. I’ll only be a moment.”
  207. >You sit down on the leather couch and lean back. Getting as comfortable as you can.
  208. >You drink in the atmosphere, listening idly to the scratching of quill on parchment.
  209. >The office you were in was so comfy.
  210. >The shades were down but open, letting in just a little bit of the still early sunlight into the room.
  211. >The walls were covered in various books, nick nacks and photos of young mares and foals.
  212. >Vines and plants snaked around the corners and sides of things.
  213. >The room appeared so cluttered yet there was a sort of beautiful harmony to it.
  214. >Lived in, but not chaotic or confusing.
  215. >You let out a breath you didn’t know you were holding and allowed yourself to sink into the couch.
  216. >”Good, now, how would you like to start?”
  217. “Wuh-huh?”
  218. >”Well hun, what would you like to talk about? You can go as slow as you would like.”
  219. “I...oh, well, we can jump right into it.”
  220. >”Are you sure? We don’t have-”
  221. “I’m positive. It isn’t at all hard to talk about. Well...okay it is, but not because it hurts. It’s...complicated. I honestly don’t see a need to be here. I’m here at the request of a friend really.”
  222. >”Oh! Well, they sound like a very nice one, please go at any pace you wish to then.”
  223. >You rubbed your temples and took a deep breath.
  224. “Phew. Okay, I’ve been having some trouble...with...sleeping.”
  225. >”Oh?”
  226. >The mare started scribbling notes down.
  227. >”And why is that?”
  228. “It’s uh...well I thought I could sleep them off, but it’s a reoccurring thing.”
  229. >”Which is?”
  230. “I...I don’t know what they are. I want to say nightmares, but, they’re more thrilling than horrifying really.”
  231. >She takes down some more notes and taps the tip of her quill to her chin.
  232. >”Are you comfortable telling me what happened in these, urm, let’s call them dreams? Goodie?”
  233. “Yea, I can but...ugh let me think it through. Its more confusing than anything else.”
  234. >”Take your time no rush.”
  235. >You rub your temples some more, deep in thought.
  236. “Okay so it’s actually a dream of some thing that happened a while back at work.”
  237. >Anima nodded and began taking down some more notes.
  238. >”I’m listening.”
  239. “See, I’m a zookeeper, for primates mostly. I work at the zoo near the forest at the edge of the city? Well, we have this one chimpanzee, Sultan, who’s infamous for his escape artistry. He’s been given the nickname Hoofdini for it.”
  240. >The mare giggled.
  241. >”Oh like the escape artist? That’s cute.”
  242. “Hehe, yea, wish I thought of it. Well, anyways. He escaped one night and actually got into the forest. Deep into it. Me being the mare in charge of the primate exhibits, I was one of the ponies who went in to get him back.”
  243. >”Well did you find him?”
  244. “Well, yes, eventually we did. I did specifically. I was separated from the rest of my party.”
  245. >The old mare cocked her head.
  246. >”But the forest isn’t that thick.”
  247. “Oh, ma’am, the chase was TERRIBLE! It was dark, the cicada broods were causing a ruckus, and the lanterns we had weren’t much help at all. And the trails aren’t well maintained either.”
  248. >”Oh, well yes I suppose that would cause problems huh?”
  249. “Yea, it was an annoyance.”
  250. >”And was being separated from your group what you think caused all of this?”
  251. “Oh, no ma’am. It may have been a little creepy, and slightly dangerous, but none of that was an issue with me.”
  252. >”It’s okay if it was Goodie. No judgment here. Why, I’d be screaming like a filly if I were deep in the woods without my husband.”
  253. “No really it wasn’t. I was just exhausted from a long day at the zoo and, Sultan, as much as I love him, was just being a pain in my flank that night.”
  254. >”But you did get him back right? I hope he wasn’t such a fuss.”
  255. “Yes we did, and no, he was a good boy and all it took was a banana to get him back. Really, the whole night, other than Sultan escaping, wasn’t really eventful.”
  256. >”Well…”
  257. >The quill began to move again across the page.
  258. >Mrs. Anima pushed her glasses up her snout.
  259. >”Is that all the happened that night then?”
  260. >You pondered.
  261. >From what you remembered, yes, but…
  262. “Well, actually…”
  263. >Anima perked at this and scribbled some more notes down.
  264. >You rubbed your scalp with your hoof, finding the floor very interesting all of a sudden.
  265. >”Yes?”
  266. “Between getting separated from the search party, and finding Sultan, moments are hazy.”
  267. >”Is that so?”
  268. >Her quill was moving in her aura more enthusiastically now.
  269. >This maybe an important detail.
  270. “Yea, and every night, those hazy parts begin to get more and more clear.”
  271. >”Well, what do you remember so far?”
  272. >Your hoof traveled from the top of your scalp down to the base of your muzzle.
  273. >You were trying desperately to fetch the memory of what had happened that night. Or at least the bits you remember.
  274. “I remember running. Yes I was running, just galloping for what must’ve been my life.”
  275. >”And why is that?”
  276. “I’m not sure. But I do remember certain things. I’m not sure where in the timeline of events they happened but they stick out.”
  277. >”And those were?”
  278. >”Well, silhouettes. Large silhouettes. Just in the bushes. Actually that’s another thing. They looked JUST like the bushes. Leaves in all.”
  279. >”Hm...I see.”
  280. “Yea, no YEA, and I think I remember these noises...oh Celestia.”
  281. >Anima perked up at you in concern.
  282. >You were beginning to sike yourself out now.
  283. >You could feel your heart rate increase.
  284. >Just being some strange details in a dream was fine on it’s own. It really didn’t seem to bother you.
  285. >But now you aren’t so sure.
  286. >”Goodie? Are you all right?”
  287. >You nodded.
  288. “I-I’m fine.”
  289. >”Are you sure? We can stop if you-”
  290. “No no. I can push through this.”
  291. >You take a deep inhale through your nostrils and out your mouth.
  292. >”You really-”
  293. “No, I can do it!”
  294. >The poor mare flinched a little at that.
  295. “Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to lash out like that.”
  296. >She shook her head and readjusted her glasses.
  297. >”No, no. You’re fine. If you wish to continue you may. But please don’t feel pressured.”
  298. “Okay well...those...those uhm…”
  299. >”Noises.”
  300. “Yes thank you. The noises they...they sounded unnatural. Like, you know when you’re tuning a radio? The strange noises that play when you change between stations?”
  301. >”They sounded like garbled static?”
  302. “Kind of. But...I really don’t know how to explain it. It was almost like they were talking?”
  303. >”Most strange indeed. You mentioned originally that nothing more of note happened the night in question yet, this all seems very relevant.”
  304. “Well, you see, all of that? I don’t remember ANY of it happening the night all of this happened. I went home that night with out issue. All the weird stuff were from the dreams I’ve been having.”
  305. >”I see.”
  306. >The quill wrote down some more notes, and with a quick tap of the page she set it down on the side.
  307. >”Well this is all very interesting. I’m not entirely sure what I make of it all. Though I do have some suspensions.”
  308. “Like what? What do you think happened that night?”
  309. >”Well, I am doubtful anything strange ACTUALLY happened that night. But what you bring up from your dreams IS interesting.”
  310. “Why?”
  311. >”Well, Goodie hun, do you like reading old stories?”
  312. >You were slightly taken a back by this.
  313. >I mean, what did stories have to do with anything?
  314. “Uhm. Not necessarily? Why do you ask?”
  315. >”Well, everything you described sound vaguely similar to golems.”
  316. “Golems?”
  317. >”Yes. Hold on let me grab a book.”
  318. >The unicorn gets up and steps over the shelf on the far side of the room and looks over it.
  319. >”Yes let’s see. Urban settlements, Urban and rural lifestyle differences, Urban earth ponies during the reign of the two sisters...ah! Urban Myths and Legends.”
  320. >She grabs the old book in her magic and walks back to her couch.
  321. >Flipping through the pages she stops on one and places it down on the coffee table between the two of you.
  322. >”Yes right here. Golems. Have you heard of them?”
  323. >You shook your head.
  324. “No I don’t think I have.”
  325. >”Really! Hm, that’s strange. Although I suppose it is a tad more obscure than other urban legends. It is a little older than most as well.”
  326. “Why?”
  327. >”Well, from the descriptions you have given me, they honestly sound like golems. An old urban legend that most scholars trace to more rural settlements. They are mostly a story now. Something parents tell their foals to scare them not to go into the woods or these beasts will gobble them up.”
  328. “Well, I’m from Ponyville, and I’ve never heard of a golem before.”
  329. >”Really? Are you sure? Your parents never warned you not to go out and play in the woods at night or stray too far in?”
  330. “I mean, yes, they did, but I don’t think they ever mentioned anything called a ‘golem.’ Are you saying I saw golems?”
  331. >She chuckled.
  332. >”No hun. I’m saying I think what you were dreaming about were golems. Here, look. They are creatures made of the earth and flora of the region they inhabit. They are very private creatures that like to eat any little foals or lonely travelers who wonder too deep into forests, especially at night. A few ponies claimed to have seen them or have been chased by them. Examples of the legend have been found from the outskirts of White Tailed woods, all the way to Saddle Arabia.”
  333. “Okay, but I’ve never heard of these things. Why would I be dreaming about them?”
  334. >The mare shrugged.
  335. >”A variety of reasons. Maybe you have, but don’t remember. Your subconscious may be connecting dots to try and figure out and rationalize what you saw that night?”
  336. >You looked at the illustration of one of these things.
  337. >A bulky mess of leaves and dirt. Big cheeks, and huge, cold, glowing eyes.
  338. >A few can be seen on all four of their limbs or on their hind legs.
  339. >You were skeptical.
  340. >You never recalled hearing of any creature like this.
  341. >It honestly just looked like a bear with big eyes and covered in mud and shrubbery.
  342. >The proportions were just off though.
  343. >You’ve never seen a creature like this, fairytale or not.
  344. >But the details were eerily similar to what you’ve been seeing in your dreams.
  345. >”What do you think hun?”
  346. “I...don’t think I’m convinced honestly. Or at least I don’t want to be. I’ve honest to Celestia, never heard of these things before.”
  347. >The mare shrugged and closed the book.
  348. >”It was just a thought. It may be a coincidence, you may just now be remembering some legendary folklore from way back when you were a filly. I just think it’s an interesting observation.”
  349. “I see…”
  350. >Anima looked at the clock on her wall and winced.
  351. >”Ohh, um, hun, it appears we’ve gone over our original hours by about ten minutes. I’m sorry but I’m afraid out time is up.”
  352. “Oh! O-okay, that’s fine. Thank you for seeing me then.”
  353. >”You can make another appointment at the front desk if you’d like. And if you’d like any of the refreshments before you leave that’s also okay.”
  354. “No thanks I think I’m…”
  355. >You paused.
  356. >Some thing innate was pulling you back to the book.
  357. >You stared at it for a few seconds.
  358. “Actually, Mrs. Anima?”
  359. >”Yes?”
  360. “Would you mind if I um...borrowed that book?”
  361. >She looked over to the book, and back at you.
  362. >Clearly confused as to why.
  363. “I just would like to read more on these golem things. Maybe on some other creatures I’ve never heard of.”
  364. >The pony thought for a moment, tapping her chin to her hoof.
  365. >”How about this. I’ll let you borrow my book, IF you promise to visit me again. If that’s fine with you.”
  366. >Hey, sounds reasonable.
  367. “Yea. I’ll make sure to do that. I really appreciate you seeing me today Mrs. Anima.”
  368. >”It was all my pleasure hun. It’s not to often I get to hear stories like the one you have. I’ll see you whenever you decide to schedule.”
  369. >You grab the book and make a final goodbye before leaving the office, making sure to talk to the pony at the front desk before leaving.
  370. >Looking back at the experience, it wasn’t as bad as you thought it’d be.
  371. >It actually felt really good to get some of that off your chest.
  372. >Although you were really missing Zoro and the other simians back at the zoo.
  373. >Hey at least Acorn can get off your back now.
  374. >Damn mare is too well meaning.
  375. >*Boom*
  376. >A huge explosion rang out in the sky.
  377. >Ponies and carriages stopped to look up into the sky.
  378. >Gasps and chatter could be heard from all around the block.
  379. >What they were looking at was obscured by a building.
  380. >You cantered up the street to get a better look.
  381. >When you finally made it to the end of the cross walk you were stunned to see it.
  382. >A huge circular rainbow filled the sky, going in all directions.
  383. >It was vibrant and magnificent. You’ve rarely seen anything so beautiful.
  384. >You were so struck by the sight you were tripped over by a young orange filly running through the streets.
  385. >”OUTTA MAH WAY, OUTTA MAH WAY! I KNOW WHAT I WANT NOW! IT’S ALL CLEAR NOW! AH’M GOIN’ HOME! AH’M GOIN’ HOME!”
  386.  
  387. ~~~~
  388.  
  389. >It was dark.
  390. >You couldn’t see more than a meter in front of you.
  391. >The tiny lantern in your mouth was all the light you had.
  392. >But you kept running.
  393. >Something was in the bushes.
  394. >Something you thought for sure was going to get you.
  395. >The rustling was accompanied by strange voices.
  396. >Were they voices?
  397. >The thought on these noises evaporated as you concentrated more on dodging the trees and roots that would suddenly pop into your vision.
  398. >You wanted to scream but you knew if you tried you’d drop the only source of light you had in these woods.
  399. >All you could do was whimper, muffled by the lanterns handle.
  400. >Sweat poured down your face, some of it would get into your eyes and sting a little bit.
  401. >Blurring up the little precious vision you already had.
  402. >Your hoof hit something.
  403. >A root?
  404. >It kind of stung.
  405. >You hoped you weren’t bleeding.
  406. >Galloping through all this mud you’d be lucky to not get some sort of infection from it.
  407. >You could see something just up ahead.
  408. >A hill?
  409. >You squinted through the sweat and darkness.
  410. >No...no that was no hill.
  411. >You stopped and buried your hooves into the earth.
  412. >Leaning back as far as you could, your flank dragged across the ground.
  413. >You stopped just at the edge.
  414. >A deep ditch, a story deep and while not a drop off, it was very steep.
  415. >You looked around and tried to book it to the side.
  416. >No sooner could you start moving a shape emerged from the bushes.
  417. >You halted and turned the other way.
  418. >Two more dark figures.
  419. >You were surrounded.
  420. >You backed up to the edge of the ledge.
  421. >You got into a defensive stance, low to the ground.
  422. >Flight had to give in to fight.
  423. >You were ready for this.
  424. >And that’s when it hit you.
  425. >Literally.
  426. >*pomf*
  427. >Something got you in the neck.
  428. >Something small and sharp.
  429. >You began to feel woozy.
  430. >You tried to stay your ground.
  431. >The figures began to get closer. Every inch of the distance they closed the more the world began to spin.
  432. >You took a slight step back.
  433. >Your hoof slipped.
  434. >One of the shapes made a noise.
  435. >You began to drop.
  436. >…
  437. “*gasp*”
  438. >You jolted from your pillow, a hoof on your neck.
  439. >You searched for the...what ever it was stuck near your trachea.
  440. >Nothing.
  441. >You had to calm yourself down, you were panting.
  442. >Wet fabric clung to you, the sheets drenched with sweat again.
  443. >Or was it just sweat?
  444. >*snif*
  445. >*sigh*
  446. >Yep. Just sweat.
  447. >You dragged yourself out of your bed and into the shower, you let the warm droplets run across your body as you leaned your head against the glass door.
  448. >Another dream, it wasn’t as blurry as the last one.
  449. >You’d have to tell Anima tomorrow, see what it means, what she thinks happened.
  450. >You engorged your self on the stories her book had to offer.
  451. >You’d actually gone to the library to check out more after another nightmare.
  452. >You felt a little embarrassed, your mane was a mess.
  453. >The more you read about these things the more suspicious you began to be.
  454. >You were growing more and more anxious by the day.
  455. >It was almost like somepony was watching you.
  456. >Studying you as intensely as you were studying these golems.
  457. >You were becoming more confused and disorganized.
  458. >Stuff wasn’t always were you remember last leaving them.
  459. >You’d come home and something would be off about your apartment.
  460. >A book would be just a little too crooked.
  461. >A spoon would be on one side of the sink instead of the other where you’d thought you left it?
  462. >You didn’t feel alone in your home anymore.
  463. >It was almost like you were being haunted.
  464. >Some ponies treated you differently too.
  465. >After a performance with Zoro last week a mare began to ask you some odd questions.
  466. >Where you worked, what your hours were, details about your job.
  467. >She became a regular visitor for a few days after that.
  468. >Why?
  469. >What happened in that forest that night?
  470. >Did you really run into golems?
  471. >Is it some government secret?
  472. >Maybe the Equestrian government was doing horrible mad science experiments and they got out and now they want to hunt you down and silence you before you can get the word out?!
  473. >…
  474. >You turned off the water and grabbed the towel in your teeth.
  475. >No, that was too silly.
  476. >You’re not a conspiracy theorist.
  477. >You are a rational pony.
  478. >The nightmares were just that, and your therapist siked you out.
  479. >Your unwarranted anxiety was playing tricks on you and making you doubt yourself.
  480. >Your lack of sleep was to blame.
  481. >After drying off and having breakfast you slip your work vest on and make your way out the door.
  482. >You just needed time with Zoro.
  483.  
  484. ~~
  485.  
  486. >”And the I said, ‘Lily, you’re mane is a RATS NEST!’ And then she retorts by screaming, ‘YEA I KNOW ACORN! I TAKE CARE OF RATS!’ And I start dying!”
  487. >You and Acorn begin to giggle at the story.
  488. >Your friend was recounting the time one of the keepers at the zoo had an entire exhibit escape because a unicorn foal was exceptionally good at picking locks.
  489. >At least she found her cutie mark that day.
  490. >The both of you were sitting in the tower above the zoo eating an early dinner, the view today was especially nice.
  491. >There’s something about sunsets contrasting with the skyline that gave you a sense of calm.
  492. >A calm you desperately needed.
  493. “Yea, Lily was so angry. She didn’t stop smelling bad for a week.”
  494. >”HeheHA! Yea, working with her was like working in a cage that hadn’t been cleaned in WEEKS! Oh, hey, I wanted to ask you something.”
  495. “Yea? What is it?”
  496. >”Did you ever end up going to that therapist?”
  497. “Oh! Oh, yea, I did.”
  498. >”Welllll, do you feel better now?”
  499. “Eh, it was nice to get it all off my chest, but I honestly don’t feel any better or worse than before.”
  500. >That was a lie.
  501. >Your problems have seemingly doubled since seeing her.
  502. >But you were having a great moment with Acorn Bits and you wanted to soak up as much of this moment as you could.
  503. >”Aw well, at least its good to hear that talking about it felt good! Are you gonna go again?”
  504. “Yea, I’m kinda obligated to go again. At least one more time.”
  505. >”Obligated?”
  506. “Oh, yea, I asked to borrow a book she had. She said it was fine so long I booked another appointment, if only to bring it back.”
  507. >”Oh! That makes sense. One of those self help books huh?”
  508. “Uhhhhh, yea. A self help book.”
  509. >Telling Acorn about the stories may not be a good idea.
  510. >Conspiracy theory talk may cause her to push you into more visits.
  511. >Or just call a mental hospital on you.
  512. >”Well has that been helping?”
  513. “Oh, nah. I thought it would. Hasn’t really given me any helpful information other than better ways to sleep at night.”
  514. >”Well, that’s always good. You’ve been looking like a zombie more than usual Goodie.”
  515. “Nah, I’m fine.”
  516. >”Mhm, sure you are.”
  517. >Acorn glances at a clock on the wall and frowns.
  518. >”Well, I need to pick up my little foal and get back home before my husband comes looking for me.”
  519. “Oh! That’s alright. I’m going to finish this salad and enjoy the view before we lock up.”
  520. >”What ever makes you comfortable.”
  521. >Acorn gets gathers her things and gets up to leave, but turns around before she passes through the door.
  522. >”Oh, and Mane?”
  523. “Yea?”
  524. >”Sleep well tonight.”
  525. >You smile and wave to Acorn.
  526. “I’ll try.”
  527. >Acorn waves back as she leaves, leaving you alone in the cafeterium.
  528. “I’ll try.”
  529. >You lean your head against the glass, looking over the zoo and the sky line.
  530. >You take in the view of Manehatten.
  531. >The sky was a deep purple, every building was lit up and glowing.
  532. >The river reflected the buildings.
  533. >A cruise ship sailed down in colorful splendor.
  534. >A truly calming sight.
  535. >If only your apartment bedroom had a view like this.
  536. >You take a sip of your juice and exhale.
  537. >You look over to the woods bordering the zoo.
  538. >You honestly didn’t know why they’d build a zoo so close to a wooded area.
  539. >To make it appear more natural?
  540. >Would the animals be too anxious in a completely urban environment?
  541. >Maybe the city just wanted to be different.
  542. >Your eyes rolled over the hills and bushes.
  543. >The oaks, pines, and birch hugging together.
  544. >A flock of birds flew over.
  545. >You even caught a view of a fox.
  546. >Despite being where your nightmares take place, the forest is actually very beautiful.
  547. >Especially during the fall.
  548. >Orange leaves, crisp air, moving bushes.
  549. >…
  550. >Wait.
  551. >You got up and rushed to one of the spyglasses you use to get closer views of the exhibits.
  552. >You turn it towards the woods.
  553. >Your eyes dilated and you could feel your breath quicken.
  554. >Two huge empty eyes stared back at you all the way from a hill in a grassy part of the woods.
  555. >Another bush like creature stood up behind it, moving to point its freakish limb.
  556. >Right in your direction.
  557. >The two things look at each other and duck into the tree line from whence they came.
  558. >…
  559.  
  560. ~~
  561.  
  562. >You cantered down the streets of Manehatten, taking looks behind you to make sure you weren’t followed.
  563. >You almost ran into a few ponies, resulting in a few coarse remarks.
  564. >You really weren’t concerned with them though.
  565. >You just needed to get home.
  566. >NOW
  567. >You swiftly turned down the street your apartment was on.
  568. >There it was, almost home.
  569. >You picked up your pace, almost to a gallop.
  570. >You made it to the lobby and hurried to the elevator, pushing pass an elderly mare.
  571. >”Gah! Watch where you’re goin’ missy!”
  572. “Sorry ma’am!”
  573. >You slipped in and pressed the button to the third floor.
  574. >The ride up felt like it was taking forever.
  575. >You zipped down the hallways.
  576. >Almost there, almost there, almost…
  577. >”Oh! Hello there!”
  578. >An older pegasus mare was standing right in front of your door.
  579. >She tapped your on your door twice.
  580. >”I was actually hoping you’d be home from work!”
  581. >It was the same mare that asked you all those strange questions about your job just a few days ago.
  582. >”Sorry I know it’s a little...unusual to just show up at your home but I wanted to have a word about-”
  583. “You…”
  584. >”I beg your pardon?”
  585. “You...I-I remember you, what are you doing here, why are you at my apartment?”
  586. >The mare in question just stared at you in confusion, her mouth agape.
  587. >Then she smacked her self on the head.
  588. >”Oh, yes, I’m sorry. I hope I don’t come off as weird or creepy. I’m new to the area and I was wondering about a job at the zoo.”
  589. >She grinned and stood away from the door.
  590. “Oh! Ummm, well, if you want to apply for a job you’d have to talk to the owner. If you’ll excuse me, it’s been a long day and I REALLLLY just wanted to get me a shower and go to bed. Hehe.”
  591. >”Oh! Yes! Haha! How silly of me. I should do that instead huh? Well, I’m sorry to bother you. I’ll be on my way.”
  592. >You stared the pony down as she made her way down the hall.
  593. >Turning the corner she took one last look at you and grinned before continuing off.
  594. >You threw the door open ran in and shut it, engaging every lock and pushing a chair up behind it.
  595. >You locked every window in the apartment and closed your blinds.
  596. >You peaked out your window and looked down to the street.
  597. >You watched the old mare walk out of the lobby and down the street, again taking quick glances up toward your window.
  598. >You hid behind the blinds and backed up.
  599. >Cold sweat dripping down your face.
  600. >Were you safe?
  601. >Was she with the government?
  602. >Were you right all along?
  603. >Why was she here?
  604. >What did you see in the woods?
  605. >You grabbed all your books and lit a candle.
  606. >You read and reread everything you could.
  607. >They’re supposed to be fictional.
  608. >Who WAS that mare?
  609. >Could you trust her?
  610. >Were you safe to leave your apartment?
  611. >What would happen if you did?
  612. >You just stayed in your little corner refusing to move.
  613. >Why was ANY of this happening?
  614. >You couldn’t sleep that was for sure.
  615. >You curled up into a ball.
  616. “I just want to be left alone, I just want to be left alone, I just want to be left alone.”
  617. >You muttered over and over again.
  618. >Soon a stillness and quiet washed over the room.
  619. >The whole building was still.
  620. >You couldn’t even hear the normal commotion of the city outside.
  621. >All that was was the candle and books by your side.
  622. >And you shivering in a corner in your living room.
  623. >Just calm.
  624. >All was still.
  625. >And darkness gave way as the candle smoldered.
  626. >After a few minutes you got up to go and get another one to light.
  627. >You dug through a match box and lit it, the room now glowing in the faint light of a new candle.
  628. >*Thump*
  629. >What was that?
  630. >What the buck was th-
  631. >*pomf*
  632. >*thwack*
  633. >Something sharp entered your neck.
  634. >You began to panic.
  635. >Before you could let out a scream somepony rushed up from behind you and covered your mouth with their hoof and tackled you to the floor.
  636. >You squirmed and tried to buck the pony off of you.
  637. >But they had an iron grip and refused to let up.
  638. >You tried screaming but it was muffled, you kicked and tried to wriggle yourself free.
  639. >But all it managed to do was tire you out.
  640. >Draining you of energy.
  641. >A lot of energy.
  642. >Your heart was slowing down.
  643. >Your eyes began to flutter.
  644. >The assailant behind you kept you in a headlock.
  645. >”Shhh, shhh. Just sleep. Just sleep.”
  646. >You tried in vain to keep kicking and screaming.
  647. >What ever they shot into your neck was draining you of your energy.
  648. >The room began to spin.
  649. >Your eyelids began to get heavy.
  650. >And then darkness.
  651.  
  652. ~~~~
  653.  
  654. >Pure darkness.
  655. >That’s what it felt like.
  656. >You weren’t really sure how you felt about it.
  657. >You felt dead.
  658. >Was this death?
  659. >Were you really dead?
  660. >How did you get here?
  661. >You remember a struggle in your apartment.
  662. >A strange mare at your door.
  663. >Everything else was hazy.
  664. >You groan.
  665. >A dull pain washed over your body.
  666. >No. No you definitely weren’t dead.
  667. >You groan and shift, trying to stand up on your own two hooves.
  668. >You didn’t make it up a few inches until you flomped back onto the ground.
  669. >Your limbs were tied together.
  670. >You pry open your eyes and strain at your restraints.
  671. “B-buh. Wumf?”
  672. >You were gagged as well.
  673. >You finally begin to take in your surroundings.
  674. >You were outside, clouds blanketed the night sky.
  675. >Trees surrounded you from all sides, you lay in a clearing.
  676. >A clearing!
  677. >You were in the woods?!
  678. >You roll over and sit your self up.
  679. >You scan the surroundings around you.
  680. >Oh no.
  681. >Nononononono
  682. >Not the woods, not at night.
  683. >Not after what you saw at work.
  684. >Not after the nightmares.
  685. >You weren’t about to be stuck out here, not with those things.
  686. >Anything but them.
  687. >Did that mare at your door do this?
  688. >She did didn’t she!
  689. >If...no, WHEN you get out of this, you were going to throttle that piece of-
  690. >You heard a rustle from the tree line.
  691. >Buck.
  692. >Buck buck buck buck!
  693. >You had to hide, to get away, you had to get out of these bindings.
  694. >You huffed as you inched your way away from the movement towards the other side of the clearing.
  695. >Like hay you were going to go out like this.
  696. >Not until after you teach that pony a piece of her mind.
  697. >You strained at the rope tying you together as you squirmed your body away.
  698. >COME ON! Where was that Earth pony strength your mother always told you about?
  699. >You take a glance back, if only for a second, and froze.
  700. >It was staring right at you.
  701. >Those large featureless eyes chilled you.
  702. >You let out a muffled scream as you desperately continued your attempt to flee.
  703. >You heard it make one of those horrible noises.
  704. >That static mess.
  705. >From this distance and clarity you could tell it was attempting something like speech.
  706. >But no way of speaking you’ve heard before.
  707. >Something landed in front of you.
  708. >Another leafy appendage.
  709. >You followed it up to see another pair of glassy eyes looking down at you.
  710. >You muffled and rolled back.
  711. >Backing away from the golem.
  712. >More noises.
  713. >They were coming from the wood works.
  714. >You looked around you.
  715. >Five. Five golems surrounded you.
  716. >You desperately looked for a way out, and escape.
  717. >You tugged and fought against the ropes tying you together but it was no use.
  718. >It just began to leave bruises.
  719. >There was no way out, they surrounded you from all sides.
  720. >You curled up into a ball and began to sob.
  721. >This was it, this was where your life ended.
  722. >Eaten alive by some obscure monster from the forest.
  723. >You thought back to everyone you knew and loved.
  724. >Your parents, all your old friends from Ponyville, Acorn Bits.
  725. >Celestia, you hoped Zoro would be okay.
  726. >You’d miss the poor girl.
  727. >You braced yourself.
  728. >You just let the tears fall as you waited for it to be over.
  729. >You just hoped they would be quick.
  730. >…
  731. >But there was silence.
  732. >No more movement.
  733. >You didn’t dare open your eyes though.
  734. >You clamped them shut.
  735. >Only your quiet sobs filled the void.
  736. >”Cavalla”
  737. >You flinched.
  738. >The sound was garbbled and demonic.
  739. >”Guadarmi”
  740. >You furriously shook your head.
  741. >You burried the side of your face into the ground.
  742. >Just get it over with.
  743. >Why were they letting you suffer through this?
  744. >You heard movement coming closer to you, another one of them started to speak.
  745. >”Voi. Stai indietro.”
  746. >”Sì.”
  747. >You had no idea what they were saying.
  748. >The thought of opening your eyes again crossed your mind.
  749. >You dared to crack one eye open.
  750. >The golems face was just a few inches away from yours.
  751. >You flinched back.
  752. >The thing was hideous.
  753. >Its eyes were empty and its cheeks were massive.
  754. >It raised up its claws when it saw your reaction.
  755. >You flenched back, ready to be torn to shreds.
  756. >But it didn’t come.
  757. >Instead, the golem slowly moved its claw to the side of one of its cheeks and grabbed it.
  758. >With a turn of the claw you could hear a click and a static pop.
  759. >”Ma’am. Please, don’t be freightened.”
  760. >Your heart sunk.
  761. >The horrible static noises were gone but now the thing was speaking to you in Ponish.
  762. >You really couldn’t do anything but shivver and stare into the featureless eyes of the monster.
  763. >”You are Mane Goodall, is that right?”
  764. >You stayed still for a few seconds before nodding your head.
  765. >”I understand you must be freightened for your life. But please know we mean you no harm.”
  766. “W-wuhmf?”
  767. >”Ah, the gag, my apologies. Do you mind?”
  768. >It reached its claws up to you, waiting for your permission.
  769. >You nodded and it reached behind your head to undo the bindings.
  770. >”There we go. I must apologize for the restraints but we have our reasons.”
  771. “What are you! Why are you doing this?”
  772. >The golem again rose its claws, extending a digit over where its mouth should be.
  773. >”Ma’am, shhh. Please. Be quiet. I will answer your questions. I only ask you to work with us calmly.”
  774. >The golems voice was slow and calm.
  775. >You really weren’t sure how to react to any of this.
  776. >You had no real reason to trust them.
  777. >You kept your muzzle shut and continued the staring contest with its unblinking eyes.
  778. >”Uhm...are you comfortable? Would you like to sit up?”
  779. >You nodded and the creature backed up, giving you space to sit up on your haunches.
  780. >”Is that better?”
  781. “Who are you and why am I here? I didn’t do anything I swear, I just wanted to go home and live my own life. I never hurt any of you.”
  782. >”We understand that.”
  783. “Then why am I here? Why am I tied up?”
  784. >”We only wanted to talk to you.”
  785. “About what? Look I don’t remember what happened in the woods that night okay? I won’t tell anypony about you, I just want to go home.”
  786. >“Ma’am, I’m afraid we can not send you home.”
  787. “Why? If you just wanted to talk to me you could have sent th-that mare you sent to my front door. You could have just come up and talked to me, you didn’t have to do any of this.”
  788. >”All of this is for a reason.”
  789. “For what reason!”
  790. >The golem raised its claws again at your outburst, giving you a gesture to be quiet.
  791. >”It is about what happend the night of the fourteenth two months ago.”
  792. “What about it? What did I do to you? Why is any of this neccesary?”
  793. >”Give me a chance to explain first. And then you may ask your questions.”
  794. “…”
  795. >”Is that not fair?”
  796. “I...you...yes, I suppose it is.”
  797. >”Thank you. Mane Goodall, almost two months ago you encountered my team while we were working in the forest adjacent to the zoo where you worked at, correct?”
  798. >You nodded.
  799. >”Because of the encounter we were required to inject you with something called an amnesiac.”
  800. “W-what’s that?”
  801. >”It is a drug that inhibbits memory loss.”
  802. “Well, that would explain why the night was such a blur. But wait, why did you have to do that?”
  803. >”I will answer that in a moment. See, Miss Goodall, as you are probably aware by now, we...’golems’, would rather be left alone.”
  804. “I’m aware, yes.”
  805. >”We try our best to hide and stay away from your inhabitants and civilizations as best we can. Although sometimes we are found, and sometimes, we need a way to make the ponies who find us well...forget.”
  806. “I...I still don’t understand.”
  807. >”Well, Ms. Goodall, you didn’t forget. You began to remember.”
  808. “Listen, if that is what this is all about, I promise, I won’t tell anypony anything. I just want to take care of monkeys and apes and lemurs.”
  809. >”We understand that. But we can not take chances.”
  810. “Well, clearly you aren’t perfect at making ponies forget or hiding huh? We know about you creatures. You’re in our story books.”
  811. >”We know.”
  812. “Yea, so how did that happen?”
  813. >”We aren’t perfect. Sometimes, a few civilians slip through the cracks, make up wild stories in the process as well. So long your society beleives we are a myth we have no interest in the few who spin conspiacies.”
  814. “So how am I different? Until tonight I thought I was going insane, who would’ve believed me? You could’ve let me be another crazy pony conspiracy theorist.”
  815. >”It is not exactly that reason, you discovering us, why we’ve...erm...extracted you.”
  816. “Foalnapped, you foalnapped me!”
  817. >”Regardless, you are not here because of just that. If you’ll remember, you DIDN’T forget.”
  818. “S-so? What does that have to do with anything?”
  819. >”It means you’re resistant to the drug. Something very rare to see in you Equestrians.”
  820. “And?”
  821. >”And that’s a problem.”
  822. “S-so what are you going to do with me then? Eat me? Like the other ponies that’ve gone missing in your stories?”
  823. >”Well, not eat you. Like I’ve said, we don’t mean to harm you. But you will end up like those other ponies.”
  824. “W-what do you mean?”
  825. >”We want to hire you.”
  826. >…
  827. >What?!
  828. “What?!”
  829. >”We want to hire you.”
  830. “Hire me? I’m a zookeeper, I wash gorilla butts for a living, what could I do for you? And you said all those other ponies that went missing were ‘hired’ by you golems?”
  831. >”Yes. Do you not remember the mare at your front door?”
  832. ”I...uh…”
  833. >”Although you wouldn’t have the same job she has. Because of your...special trait...of being resistant to amnestics, you would be working closer with us.”
  834. “You still didn’t answer as to how I could possibly be of any help to you. I work...with...monkeys…”
  835. >You trailed off.
  836. >While you finishing your sentence, the golem took off, what you now know is not a claw, but a glove, and showed you what was underneath.
  837. >You went slackjawed at the sight.
  838. >Connected to the alleged ‘monster made of dirt and leaves’, was a pale, hairless, and very primate like hand.
  839. >After a few seconds of allowing you to gawk at the appendage, the golem slipped back on the dark glove.
  840. >”As you can see, you would actually be able to provide more help than you originally thought.”
  841. “Y-you...wha...I-I don’t…”
  842. >”We would give you time to think about the offer, but time is not something we have.”
  843. “I...you’re all-”
  844. >”Yes, we are. And not like any you’ve ever seen before. Like I said, our time is beginning to run short, if you have any questions, please, ask them now.”
  845. >You thought about it for a momment.
  846. >These were primates!
  847. >The monsters that have been haunting your dreams, the golems that chased you through the woods.
  848. >The horrible creatures you were talking to RIGHT NOW!
  849. >They were primates. They were apes!
  850. >And they were offering you to work with them?
  851. “Alright, I have seceral questions now.”
  852. >”I will answer what I can.”
  853. “Okay, first, what exactly am I being hired to do?”
  854. >”I can not answer that. We have plenty of positions you could fill, though as a new hire you may start with something mundane. Though I can give you the benifets you would receive.”
  855. “And what are those?”
  856. >” Number 1. Because you will be required to leave your native Equestrian society for an indefinite ammount of time, all of your debts and obligations will be covered by highly trusted Equestrians who currently work in the field. This includes a feasible backstory and coverup to your disappearence. Number 2. Your family will be given protection and receive compensation, without their realizing of course, and you will be given constant updates on their wellbeing. Number 3. You will have access to health care, luxuries, and security that not even your monarch has access too. Any further perks will be given with promotion, dedication, and loyalty.”
  857. “Loyalty?”
  858. >”Please do not worry. Our work is beyond the geopolitics of your society. Our orginization is sworn to pure neutrality and isloation from any acts of aggression towards your species. We will not ask you to do anything against Equestrian state interest.”
  859. “This all sounds very unlikely. You’re saying I’ll be protected better than Princess Celestia?”
  860. >”Yes.”
  861. “Hm.”
  862. >You nodded.
  863. “Alright. I have a second question.”
  864. >”I have a second answer.”
  865. “What if I refuse.”
  866. >The golem pauses and sighs.
  867. >”Unfortunately, given how...unique, your situation is. Refusel is not an option.”
  868. “So I’m basically your slave now?”
  869. >”Slaves are not paid and given the rights you will be.”
  870. “And free ponies are not forced into labor.”
  871. >The golem paused.
  872. >”Fair point. But you can not refuse, sorry. It is not up to me. I am not even the captain of this squad.”
  873. “Then why are you the one talking to me?”
  874. >”I am the only one who can speak your language.”
  875. >You look around to the other golems standing over you, and then back to the one you’ve been talking to.
  876. >Fair enough you suppose.
  877. >Although, being a slave to so strange, and possibly alien, race of primates doesn’t sound like it’d be in your best intrerest. Shockingly enough.
  878. >They promise you great benifets.
  879. >But are these promises hollow?
  880. >”Even though this may only be a formality. I would still like to know if you agree to this?”
  881. >You weren’t even sure they could be trusted.
  882. >Although it wasn’t like you had much of a choice.
  883. >You’d be working with them either way from what the golem was saying.
  884. >What would happen if you refused anyways?
  885. >Would they treat you worse?
  886. >”I see that you’re thinking. If this helps your decision, we have a team ready to go in and collect your favorite marmoset. So that you may continue to be together during your employment.
  887. “Really? You’ll let me keep Zoro?”
  888. >”All we need to do is give the word and you and her will be together.”
  889. >Your mind was really telling you no.
  890. >Thinking rationally, they were still an alien form of primates, you were being forced into working with them, you had no way to verify if their promises were genuine, they foalnapped you, and you were still tied up.
  891. >And just to say it again, THEY FOALNAPPED YOU!
  892. >Although…
  893. >You really didn’t have much of a choice.
  894. >You looked up to the golem.
  895. “Alright. I accept. And I want Zoro.”
  896. >”Good. I’m glad you’ve accepted. Although there is still one more thing we must do before we continue.”
  897. “Uhm…and what would that be?”
  898. >The golem looked up to one of his buddies and nodded.
  899. >”Mettila a dormire.”
  900. >One of the golems behind you took out a syreinge and stabbed you in the soulder with it, injecting the thick liquid.
  901. “Ah! Wha?”
  902. >”Again I must apologize, but the locations of our operations must be kept secret. We will see you when you awake. Welcome to the orginization. The Human race appreciates your offer!”
  903. “I...wuh..huh.”
  904. >You slummped over.
  905. >Darkness once again embrasing you.
  906.  
  907.  
  908. >Name: Mane Goodall
  909. >Previous occupation: Zookeeper
  910. >Age: 22 (equestrian years)
  911. >Assigned Nation: Rome
  912. >Current Assignment: Awaiting Orders
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