Eyes Without a Face

by theycallmejub

Chapter 9: Best Enemies

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Chapter IX: Best Enemies

Redheart’s normally serene face vanishes behind a mask of anger and worry as she stuffs what few things she owns into a worn suitcase. From the doorway I watch her hooves as they work carelessly. Tossing things. Dropping things. She packs a few trinkets into the suitcase. Some clothes. A small sack of bits and a pair of shoes she only wears on special occasions. Watching her pack is almost sad. Her entire life, everything she has to show for forty plus years on Celestia’s green earth; it all fits so neatly into one suitcase. No one’s life should be so sparse. So empty. They are only material possessions, I know, but as I watch Redheart fumble with her trinkets, I can’t help feeling that a pony Redheart’s age should have more…more things. Trophies. Lockets. Books. Gifts given by friends or lovers. Redheart doesn’t have anything of the sort. All she has are some trinkets and a few memories.

But then, I suppose you can’t pack memories into a suitcase. Can’t the stretch the worn leather seams with thoughts of a mother who left you and a father who died in your forelegs, pissing into a bag and muttering nonsense in his final moments. You can’t pack up the happy days you spent in a shitty apartment, in a shitty part of town with the only pony who will look your way. Acknowledge your presence. Huh... As I watch Redheart pack it occurs to me that even her memories must be sparse. The good ones at least. She could fit them all in that sad worn suitcase, if only suitcases could hold something as delicate as a memory. As fragile as a deferred dream or a broken heart. I watch her. It’s almost sad. Almost makes me want to lie down on the carpet and curl into a ball. Cry. I want to hide my face and cry, but instead I set my mind to the task of filling Redheart's sparse life.

A gift. I’ll get Redheart a gift. A necklace. A ring. Something material. Tangible. Something she can put in that worn out suitcase of hers that won’t make me feel like shit when I watch her pack. Something that will be here when the two of us are gone. Proof that we were ever here at all.

It’s a silly thing to think of now. A gift. With things being as bad as they are. With me insisting that Redheart leave her tiny flat to go stay with old Storm Chaser until I’ve settled the score with Manehattan and her criminals. I can’t have her staying here with me where one of my enemies could find her. Hurt her. I sent Sparkle a pretty clear message on the matter a few nights ago.

Sparkle…I was too hard on her. To rough. A point needed to be made. Still, I was too hard on her. I let myself forget the important lesson learned in that oppressive room. Those white walls. Those echoes…

But at least Sparkle isn’t stupid. She got the message. She knows I’ll snap her like a twig if she tries anything. Sparkle’s taken care of, at least for the moment, but I can’t say the same for the others. Filthy Rich. Scope’s killers. Redheart is in danger. Whether she wants to acknowledge it or not, she’s in danger, so I’m sending her away. Somewhere safe. Convincing her hasn’t been easy.

“And what about you, huh?” Redheart says. She slams her suitcase closed, exaggerating the action to make clear how furious she is with me. “What will you do when you come home all busted up, and I’m not here kiss your boo-boos? I swear you’re such a child, Rose. Living out some stupid superhero fantasy while I sit at home worrying myself sick.” Redheart zips up the poor worn thing, then turns to face me. Stares. Waits for me to say something. I don’t. She sighs. Starts again.

“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean that about you playing superhero. It’s just -- I wish you would let me in, Rose.” Redheart moves closer and swallows me in a tight hug. I look over her shoulder at the bag lying on her bed and try to feel something other than dread. Redheart helps. She hugs me tight. Squeezes me until it hurts to breathe. Until a cool blue hue spreads itself thin across my cream colored face. For a while I just inhale her scent and feel her warmth against my coat. For a while I don’t move. I hold Redheart as tight as I can. I squeeze her until the effort makes my forelegs hurt, and for a moment that doesn’t last long enough we become indistinguishable. For a moment I am lost. Unable to tell where Redheart ends and I begin.

“I’m not trying replace Daisy or Lily, and I won’t pretend I understand what you’re going through. But let me stay. I can help you.”

“You already have. You’ve done more than enough.”

“I just don’t want to see you hurt is all.” The space between us widens. Redheart leans away and caresses the scar on my underbelly, remembering a night not as peaceful as this. Remembering what was perhaps our most intimate moment together. A shame. All of my most intimate moments seem to be moments of suffering. Violent suffering.

Redheart’s searing cherry-red knife digging the slug out of my gut.

Baritone's bellowing as I pushed him into Manehattan's embrace.

Sparkle’s cord around the mare’s throat. Her rough lips against mine and then my baton between her thighs.

Daisy’s eyes as the life leaked out of them and onto the floor -- or wherever life goes when it leaves a body. Her eyes. She was happy then. She loved me as fully as one pony can love another, and I loved her even more. Were the two of us ever as close to one another as we were then? At the end of it all?

It hasn’t even been that long, but I remember so little about Daisy other than her velveteen purple coat and her happy lifeless stare. As if I’d never know her before the noose slipped easily around her neck. As if the day she died had been the day we first met. The childhood we spent together is hazy. The classes we slept through, and the colts we giggled over, and the jobs we groaned about, and the gardens we tended together. The flowers we grew, we smelled, we ate. My lilies. And Lily’s daisies. And Daisy’s roses. Twenty plus years. Twenty plus years of memories suddenly made cloudy and muddled. Replaced by the face of a dying mare I hardly even knew.

I stroke the scar on my underbelly and make a promise that this will not be the most intimate moment Redheart and I share. I’ll get her gift. Make it special. Make it as intimate as a thing can be.

“Nothing like this will ever happen again,” I say, still groping the bad memory, not believing the words even as they leave my mouth. I take Redheart’s hoof in my own and the look she’s wearing tells me she doesn’t believe it either.

“You have to go now. Don't worry, old Storm Chaser will take care of you. He's a bit of an ass, but he's a good stallion. He'll take care of you,” I hear myself say, not liking the way I say it. I sound like somepony who’s speaking from her deathbed. Like somepony who’s saying goodbye forever. “I have to go too...I’m sorry.”

“No you’re not,” Redheart almost scoffs. She rests her chin on my shoulder as we embrace one final time. I don’t see her smile. I feel it. I feel it spread across her face as if it were spreading across my own. It’s her laugh-so-you-don’t-cry smile. The kind that tugs at the corners her mouth when everything hurts so bad it’s funny.

“Really, I am sorry. Not just about this, but all of it.”

“No, you’re not,” Redheart says again. “Look, I don’t care about any of that.” She presses her forehead against mine and before she kisses me, she says, “I don’t care what you do, and I don’t care why you do it, and I don't care who you do it to. Just come back me. You come back to me, and you come back in one piece. Okay?”


“You have to promise me. Really promise me this time. No lies like before.”

“Okay. I promise.” Redheart presses her forehead against mine. Then she kisses me. It is a mother’s kiss pressing against the face of a sick child: healing. A partner’s kiss caressing the face of a lonely lover: promising.

I feel the old fear start leave me. The tremble in my hooves grasps at my fur as Redheart takes the burden from me and bears it up on her own shoulders. I grasp at it too. My fear. My fear has been with me for as long as I can remember and even though I hate it, being without it is unthinkable. I need it. My fear. My tremble. I need it. It’s who I am. It’s all I have. All I deserve.

A cold tremor skulks through my forelegs from shoulder to hoof.

“None of that now,” Redheart coos. “Give it here,” she says, “you don’t need it anymore.”

The coldest tremor I've ever felt skulks through my forelegs from shoulder to hoof, and I shake in Redheart’s forelegs like the coward she knows I have been for years.

I feel my hooves tremble for what I know will be the last time…

…And then it's gone. Redheart takes it from me. She takes my tremble.

Then she picks up the last of my pieces. She’s been picking them up ever since that night she rescued me from the hydra’s neck. Ever since we first met in that sleepy little diner. Ever since her mother left her alone to care for her senile old father. She’s been picking up pieces, and picking up pieces, and picking up pieces, and now finally all the little broken bits are starting to knit themselves back together. Now all the pieces are falling into place. Falling and settling right where they’re supposed to be.

I don’t think Redheart sees it, but in the darkness, I smile. I can’t help it. We aren’t broken anymore. I can’t help but smile.

“Go on,” I tell her, “Dee is waiting for you outside.” Reluctantly, we let go of each other. Redheart leaves. She isn’t a water fly anymore. As she goes the ripples created in her wake are tremendous. They sweep me up in their tide and nearly pull my hooves out from under me.

Redheart says she doesn’t care about my reasons but as I watch her go, I become aware of a strong desire to know hers.

I call after her. “Why did you come back, Redheart?”

Redheart pauses. Looks over her shoulder. “I guess I just needed something to fix,” she says thoughtfully. The words hang in air long after Redheart disappears through the doorway, down the stairs, and into the taxi carriage waiting for her on the sidewalk four stories below. The words and the ripples. They are still in the room, floating up by the ceiling fan as I leap out the window. My hook claws into one of the city’s many rough edges. I swing. Fly. Come down running.

I was born an earth pony and tonight Redheart reminds me that I am just that. An earth pony. Not a pegasus or a unicorn or an alicorn. Not a creature of the night. Not a mangy thing with hungry eyes. Not a vigilante. Not a shapeless, formless animal. Or a monster. Or a god. Tonight I am just a pony. Just a mare with some cord, and a hook, and a pair of batons and a sturdy pair of boots. Tonight I have something to fight for other than revenge. I have a mare to protect. Not just her but every single pony like her. Ever pony like Stephen Scope. Like Sparkle. Daisy. Lilly…And even me. Even Rose. I may be just a mare, but tonight I will show Manehattan that there will not always be chasing and fleeing. That one pony with a mended heart and some cord can do something to change it after all.


The glass sparkles brilliantly in the silver moonlight as it shatters. The broken bits sprinkle down to the sidewalk below in small shards, their luminescence otherworldly. Like stardust. Like flecks of light made tangible, given shape and form and depth and texture by the moon goddess herself.

My hind hooves crash through the window of Filthy Rich’s penthouse suite, and the glass sparkles as it shatters, and the small flecks of hard light travel down to the sidewalk nineteen stories below. Glittering. Decorating Manehattan’s ugly face.

I hear a small, alarmed yelp come from somewhere in the dark bedroom, followed shortly by the click of a light switch being flipped. Then somepony who must be Filthy shouts for his bodyguards. The lights come on. I catch a glimpse of a stallion dressed in a bathrobe with a greasy slicked-back tail and a greasier slicked-back mane as he slips out the bedroom door. He slips out and one of his bodyguards slip in, a dusty grey-faced diamond dog, his collar adorned with precious stones.

The dog's ears perk. His nose perks. He snarls. Bears his teeth. Charges. Dives headlong. The speed and raw recklessness of his attack surprise me. I’ve dealt with diamond dogs before, but always their speed surprises me. Catches me off guard.

The grey-face dog charges, and his limbs are gangly, like old branches on a dying tree, and as he reaches for me, I almost misjudge the distance. Almost miscalculate the number of seconds it will take him to snuff the space between us and tear out my throat.


I sidestep. Bite his collar. Spin. Use his own weight and momentum to send him careening.

A jagged fissure tears into in the wall behind me as his nose meets the solid surface. Before he can peel his face off the plaster, I slam both hind hooves into the back of his head, and the fissure stretches. Widens. Deepens. I kick the hound again and his body spasms. Then falls to floor like broken toy.

Another bodyguard comes in the bedroom. Flies in. A surprisingly small pegasus with a sickly yellow coat and a clever face. He looks at me. Then over my shoulder at the diamond dog lying unconscious, slumped against the wall. He twitches. Hesitates. His eyebrow arches. He looks back to me. Then away. Then back. Away. Back.

“I don’t get paid nearly enough,” he mutters before zipping out the way he came in.

As I pass through the doorway the bedroom shrinks behind me, giving way to a colossal common area. It is the biggest room I have ever seen. The theme appears to be some interior designer’s interpretation of the Ancient Romane Empire. Great silvery cloud-white pillars stretch from floor to ceiling, and the walls and ceiling are painted to look like a clear blue sky. A hot tub is bubbling in the center of the room, and all around it are leather couches and sofas, sprouting up from the cream-colored carpet like pony-made bushes. To the left of the hot tub there is a bar annexed to the dining room, and to the right there is a griffin.

To the right there is an enormous monster of a griffin. Her feathers are pointed. They are the color of mud, and her talons are the color of brass, and her beak is the color of brass, and if the cry resonating from it had a color it would be brass as well.

A griffin?

Before I can make sense of what I’m seeing, a brass talon rakes across my side, yanking the floor out from underneath me and sending the colossal room pitching. Turning. Wheeling. The suite spins as if swept up in a hurricane, and for a few long seconds there is nowhere to stand and nothing to grasp as the Ancient Romanenian villa is carried away by a storm.

It’s not until my back crashes into the shelf of glass bottles behind the bar that I realize it’s me pitching through the air and not the room. The shelf erupts with a flurry of breaking glass that scratches my back and splashes liquor into the newly opened cuts. The pain is sharp. I wail. The shrill sound escapes my open mouth like a prisoner escaping her cell.

Somewhere in the room a heavy wing beat announces itself, and then a cry that’s somewhere between an eagle’s scream and a lion’s roar erupts from behind the bar counter. A few seconds later a head appears above me, and the head has a scowling face, and the face has a fierce beak, and the beak has a brass hook at the end of it. A baleful brass hook. Ready and eager to sink into me. To make a meal of my intestines. To relieve me of the thumping in my chest, the heaving in my lungs.

I try to stand but slip on dizziness and wasted liquor

The griffon dives. Leads with her brass talons. Her brass hook. Last night such a sight would’ve terrified me but earlier this night Redheart took my fear. Carved it out and carried it away on her shoulders.

The griffon dives.

My legs are under me now. I meet her face to face. Hook to muzzle.

I meet her. Move against her like a strong wind. My mouth finds the hilt of a baton holstered on my hip, and my teeth clench, and the strain on my neck is almost unbearable as I set every muscle in my body to the task of cutting the air with my blunt blade.

My baton whistles. Flashes her inanimate grin.

Somewhere out in the storm raging beyond these walls a pegasus kicks thunder out of a raincloud.

Then a wicked vibration sprints through my neck, and the griffin’s body goes slack in midair before crashing into me.

The next few seconds tick away without me. The moment of impact. The feel of my baton’s inanimate grin kissing the griffin’s head. I miss it. The griffin dives, and I meet her, and my neck strains, and my baton grins -- and the next thing I know she is on top of me, flattening me, her body completely limp. Like a ragdoll. Like a broken toy.

It takes some doing, but I manage to roll the heavy beast off my chest. She’s out like a light, and her temple has already changed color and started to swell, but she’ll live. So will I. For a long moment I’m content with just being alive. Happy to have survived both attacks without having to take kill anyone. Happy with my small victories. Then I look around the massive empty room and the small victories become a bit smaller.


I slam a frustrated hoof into an unbroken wine bottle on the self. Damn griffin slowed me down. Let Filthy get away. Damn griffin. Filthy Rich must be in a bad way if he’s employing bucking monsters to protect him. Diamond dogs and griffins and Luna knows what else. Was he expecting me? Damn it. Damn it. Damn it! I put the thought on repeat as I look down at the defenseless griffin and stifle a sudden surge of violent impulses. The urge to snap her neck. Grind her beak into powder. I think about the lovely popping sound her bones will make as I break her talons one by one. As I dislocate her wings. Fortunately for the griffin, thoughts of Redheart stay my hooves. The image of her lips against mine flashes through my head, and a voice speaking from behind the memory tells me to let it go. Tells me I’m not that pony anymore. That I’m better than all that.

Still, I'm sure tearing those mud brown wings out of her back would make me feel better.

…Mud brown wings…Her wings. Wings! That’s right. Filthy doesn’t have wings. He can’t have gotten far. If he’s fleeing, he’s fleeing on the street. He’s in a carriage down on the street, and even if he’s already a few blocks away, I can catch him. He can’t fly, but I can. I can catch him. He can’t have gotten far.

I sprint back to the bedroom window, twirling my hook overhead as I go. Ready to leap. Ready to fly. To chase.

I sprint to the window but before I leap, a long black carriage barrels past the open window. I was wrong. Filthy Rich can fly. Unlike Baritone’s, Filthy’s getaway carriage is drawn by a pair of pegasi.

I sprint to the window where I made my entrance, but I'm too late. The carriage barrels past me.


…The carriage is barreling past me. I am sprinting. My hook is twirling. It is happening now. Fast and slow and right now.

There’s still time. No time for thinking, but there’s still time to catch the flying cart.

It's happening. I am sprinting. My hook is twirling. The carriage is barreling. The wings of the pegasi drawing the cart are beating, and their chests are heaving, and the night sky is wet with rain. As I leap out the window, the drops are ice cold on my cheeks and neck and shoulders and back and limbs.

And then I'm airborne. Flying. Chasing.

It is happening…

Something is growling at my back.

...Happening now…

I am throwing my hook, and the bedroom is falling away, and the window is falling away, and the broken glass is falling away--and the distance between me and the flying carriage is shrinking like a deflating balloon.

...All of it. All together…

A sudden pain is darting up my left hind leg. Something is growling at my back, and something else is digging into my hind leg. Digging. Holding. Sinking into my skin--and as it sinks, I am becoming heavier. Plunging. Drowning in Luna’s wet night sky.

...All of it at once... all of it…right…now!

Then my hook catches the back wheel of the flying carriage, and when the cord goes taut--pulls itself straight with a wicked snap--it stops happening. My teeth try to rattle themselves out of my skull, and my neck nearly gives as the cord bungees, and then all it once it stops happening. The world turns slower. My senses go dull. Fail me. I don’t have a heartbeat. I can’t breathe. Can’t smell. Can’t see or hear or feel anything. It stops happening. Nothing is happening. Nothing. There is only the vague sensation of movement, and the rusted taste of blood and cord in my mouth, and the empty, oppressive void tugging at me from someplace out in the black, black night.

I go numb.

The city has herself a chuckle. Just an earth pony? she laughs from inside my own head. What happened to the alicorn that killed so many of my criminals, she sneers. What happened to the mangy thing with the hungry eyes? Where are your dark parts? Your ugly parts? Where’s the real Rose? You can’t fight me without her.

I tell her to shut up. Tell her I’m not that pony anymore.

You need her. You’ll die without her.

“Shut up.” I hear myself mumble aloud through a mouthful of cord.

They all will. Sparkle. Dee. Redheart. You can’t protect them without her.

“Shut up.”

She doesn't. She laughs. Manehattan laughs. She throws her head back, and she clutches her stomach, and she laughs. Hot and haughty and madder than Lord Discord himself.


The sensation of falling sharpens my senses. Brings me back to reality. Back to the screaming carriage dragging me through the wet sky. Me and whatever is clinging to my back leg. Once again I bite the cord I involuntarily spat out a moment ago while screaming at a voice in my head. The city has never spoken to me before. She laughs, but she’s never spoken to me directly. Her voice is haunting. I shuddered at the sound of it. Shuddered because her voice sounds so much like my own.

I hear the growl billow up from beneath me. Same one I heard at my back as fly out the window. I hear the growl. Then the growl becomes words. Broken words. Like an animal trying to speak.

“Flower pony bad. Kill friend.” I look down and see the silhouette of the diamond dog with the glittering collar gripping my back leg, his body flailing dangerously.

“Now flower pony die.” His voice heaves. Quivers. I can’t tell if he’s crying through all the rain, but it sounds like he might be.

With my free leg I kick him square in his face. He holds on. I kick him again. I feel his teeth rattle. A few of them give. He holds on. I kick again. Again. I feel his nose go squishy under my boot. He holds on. Doesn’t let go. Then he reaches for me with his free paw, scaling me as if I were a mountainside. I kick. He reaches. The nails of his free paw pierce my hip like a climber’s pick piercing the edge of a cliff.

“Flower pony kill friend. Best friend. Only friend.”

The diamond dog scales higher. Is scaling higher.

The cord is in my mouth, and it is slippery, and my grip is weakening. I try to slow the hound’s climb. I kick at him with my front legs, but his advance is implacable.

“Flower pony bad.” He climbs. “Flower pony die now.” His maw opens and his breath is the breath of Cerberus.

With nothing tethering me to Celestia’s green earth but the cord in my mouth, I hold back the hound’s gaping maw with tired forelegs. He growls. Snarls. My eyes narrow. They fix on his diamond collar. Glinting. Reflecting my weathered face.

The maw inches closer. A vindictive tongue laps at my throat, anticipating the coming meal.

The maw inches closer. It is voracious. The tongue laps. Closer. Laps. Closer. Laps. Closer. Closer. Laps.

Then a bolt of lightning illuminates the night sky, and I see the dog’s face clearly. The light comes and goes faster than a pony can blink, but it’s enough time for my sharp eyes to drink in the image. The features are so rich. So vivid. I’ll never forget them. The face belongs to the diamond dog I nearly beat to death on the rooftop outside of Scope’s apartment, three stories above room 110. And the dog I threw off the rooftop must have been this one’s…his what? His friend? Funny. How callous of me. How cruel. It never occurred to me that these things can feel.

The maw is just about to end me when one of the long black carriage’s long black doors slides open. A pony pokes its head out. Wind and hasty forward movement whip its mane about, obstructing the pony’s features. It’s not until I see the hot yellow light illuminate his face that I realize he is a stallion, and that he is a unicorn, and that he must be one of the many officers of Manehattan’s Finest on Filthy’s payroll, because the charge gathering at the tip of his horn is the first sign of their calling card. Their signature. Not a bullet, but a bullet would hurt a hell of a lot less.

His horn sparks.

First there is light. Then sound. Then fury.

A shrill cry escapes the diamond dog as a magic bolt explodes against the top of his head. The heat from the blast brushes against my face, kissing my cheeks with lips made of smoke. The hound's flesh steams. Bubbles. The smell is rancid. It bucks inside my nostrils and makes me gag. Almost makes me spit out the cord.

The dog's grip loosens, but his desire for revenge, to taste my throat in his mouth, keeps him tied to me for one moment longer.

Tied to me. A part of me. I took from this poor hound what was taken from me, and I did it without a second thought, and I enjoyed it. I did it with a smile on my face, and something like glee in my chest, and something else like mad lust in my loins. Once again I see my own face reflected in the face of my enemy. Once again I hear the city laugh as she reminds me what I really am. What we all are.

“Kill friend…flower pony…” he tries to say more but he is falling.

“I’m sorry,” I say. Or perhaps I only try to say it as I reach for him. “I’m sorry.”

No time for thinking. There’s plenty of need for it but no time.

I spit out the cord tethering me to the flying carriage. To the world. I spit it out.

The diamond dog is falling.

I am falling.

And the aggressive stallion is falling.

And the hound's only friend is falling.

And Stephen Scope is falling, tumbling out of my closet and onto the carpet.

And Sparkle's hat is falling...

We are falling... All of us. All together. We are all together, and we are the same, and we are always falling. Chasing. Fleeing. Falling. Going to meet the sidewalk. To rest in Manehattan's assuaging embrace.

“I’m sorry…”

I catch the cord with my tail, hanging upside down and scissoring the cord uneasily between my hind legs. Then I catch the falling hound. Stop his fall. My teeth find his collar and I hold him like I won’t ever let go.

His collar. It is adorned with precious stones. It is glinting. It is beautiful, and so is he; and for one impossibly wonderful, impossibly harrowing, impossibly beautiful, impossibly morose, impossibly precious, silent, intimate moment, my teeth find his collar, and they alone are enough to stop his fall. To stop all the falling.

The unicorn fires another magic bolt. I don’t see his horn spark, but I feel a malicious, ill-tempered heat graze my coat. I smell it. Stinking. Like brimstone. Like sulfur. Like the end of days.

If I cried out as the plume of fiery yellow light tore the diamond dog from my grip, from Celestia’s green earth, I didn’t hear it.

And then the diamond dog is falling. Going to the place where the dead are reunited with their loved ones. Where the blemishes go when the winter storms come and wipe Manehattan’s face clean.

“Forgive me.” I don’t say it. I want to, but I don’t. I don’t deserve it. I took from him what was taken from me. Something that must be guilt worms its way behind my eyes and makes them water. Makes them puff up and cry.

Another intimate moment ending in violence. How many more will I have to endure before it ends, I wonder almost idly.

The diamond dog disappears into the lonely abyss. His collar is still in my mouth. Glinting. I spit it out. Spit it into tired hooves. Stare at it. Into it. I stare at it, and without life or eyes, it stares back.

…I'll get Redheart a gift...

It’s a crazy thing to think of now. Hanging half a mile above Manehattan. Dangling from the back wheel of a flying carriage. Barreling through the empty wet sky. Crazy thing to think of…Crazy.

I put on the collar -- the glinting memory of a fallen kindred spirit. I put it on. Fasten it around my neck.

I put the collar on just as another bolt whizzes by. Is whizzing by. Missing me by inches.

The unicorn’s horn is glowing as I crawl along the cord toward the back wheel of the carriage. It’s not easy. My limbs are sore, and hooves are clumsy things, and the cord is slick with rainwater -- but I focus on the light of the unicorn’s horn and I climb. He fires at me but with the extra weight of the diamond dog gone, the cord and I sway wildly in the storm. He misses. Sometimes by miles. I whisper a prayer to Luna as I crawl along the cord. I ask the moon goddess to forgive me for what I am going to do the unicorn, and for what I going to do to Filthy Rich -- to all of them. To this city and her criminals.

He fires, but Luna protects me as I crawl along the cord toward the back wheel of the barreling carriage. He fires. Misses. I climb.

I become a spark creeping up a lit fuse. I move swiftly and purposely, and when I reach my destination, I explode.

Next Chapter: Falling Up Estimated time remaining: 4 Hours, 26 Minutes
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Eyes Without a Face

Mature Rated Fiction

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