You’re awakened by high-pitched babbling from inside your house.
SHIT, burglars?! You grab the baseball bat from beside the bed and creep into the hallway stealthily. The voices seem to be coming from the kitchen.
“Dewe nummies hewe!”
“Nu take nuffin! Dunno if hoomin wives hewe!”
“Why nu take nummies? Hewd nee nummies!”
“Smawty say nu take nummies, make hoomins angwy an gif wowstest huwties an fowevuh sweepies. Jus wook awoun housie. If hoomin wives hewe, fwuffies weave. If nu hoomins, fwuffies take housie.”
Wait… those aren’t burglars. They’re fluffies. Fucking FLUFFIES got into your house! You can picture the scene now, shit everywhere, piss in your carpet, kitchen raided, trash dumped all over your floor… You grind your teeth in mounting rage and round the corner into your kitchen.
There. Three fluffies. One, a dark grey pegasus with a tan mane and darker brown tail, is on your kitchen counter, poking his nose in your box of oatmeal. A drab green fluffy with bright blue and a peach-colored one with orange are on the floor looking up at him.
The peach one shits in shock and you target him first.
You swing the bat overhead and the fluffy is obliterated in a spray of blood and crunching bone, his skull, spine, and several ribs destroyed. The green one screams and tries to run past you, but you kick out and manage to connect with its hip as it darts away and it spins on your tile floor. It looks you right in the eye and its jaw drops in horror as you raise the bat again.
Blood and brains burst from its ears and its tongue sticks out as you smash the rest of its head into pulp. As it turns out, you really do shit yourself when you die. Or at least fluffies do.
You turn to the grey pegasus on your counter and it’s rolled onto its back, legs curled and tail tucked against its belly in submission like a dog.
“Pwease nu huwt fwuffy! Nu wan make hoomin angwy! Fwuffies nu huwt nuffin! Pwease wet fwuffy weave! Nefuh cum back, eva!”
“Damn straight you’re never coming back…” you snarl menacingly as you raise your bat to finish off the last of the vermin.
It rolls off the kitchen counter just as you swing the bat. You hit the granite countertop so hard the handle of the bat snaps and you yelp as several large splinters of wood embed themselves in your hand. Dammit!
You pause just long enough to yank out the biggest splinters, then turn to find where the fluffy ran off to. It must have hurt itself falling off the counter, because now it’s limping, badly.
You chase after it, but it ducks under your coffee table, then the dining room table, then scoots out the back door, which you discover is standing open. You must have left it open when you came inside after finishing that case of beer, and these shitrats came inside when they found the door open.
You step out onto the porch, looking around for the fluffy, but it’s dark outside and its coloration makes it hard to spot. You finally locate it just in time to see its ass end scramble under your porch.
“Dammit! I bet there’s a whole fucking herd under there now! You little shitrats aren’t content with just coming in my house, stealing my food, and shitting all over the place, you’re under my fucking porch! Well guess what, you technicolor assholes ain’t living under there!”
“Fwuffies nu steaw nummies fwum mista! Nu make bad poopies! Fwuffies see doow open aww dawk time, tink hoomins weave housie an nu cum back! Nu bad fwuffies! Hewd weave, nu cum back!”
“You bet your ass you ain’t coming back…”
You turn the porch light on, then step down off the grass and kneel down to look under the porch; you can’t see a thing, but you hear multiple fluffies gasp in fear and start crying. You’re not about to reach under there though; with your luck, your hand would end up in a pile of fluffy shit.
“Nice mista? Am Smawty. Nu wan twubbwe, nu wan botha hoomin. Hewd weave wight now an nu botha hoomin agin. Pwomise.”
“Fuck you, you little shitrat. You’re goin’ down.”
You grab the garden hose and stick it under the porch as far as you can; several fluffies scream about a “nu weggies munsta”, whatever the hell that is, but are shushed by others. The smarty or whatever the fuck he’s called calls out to you again.
“Nice mista? Pwease wet fwuffies weave?”
“Fuck off and die.”
You crank the hose up all the way. Several fluffies scream about “bad wawa” and come running out from under the porch; you stomp the shit out of them. By the time you’re done, you’re down to two survivors; a bright red fluffy screeching in pain from a broken leg, and a little green pegasus foal, chirping and nudging its dead mother with its nose.
“Nice mista, pwease nu huwt fwuffies!”
“Fuck. You. Asswipe.”
You flip the bird to the smarty still hiding under your porch, then stomp on another of the red fluffy’s legs. It breaks with a loud crunch.
“OWIES! WOWSTEST WEGGIE HUWTIES! Huuhuuuhuuu, why huwt fwuffies? Nu bad fwuffies, jus wan wawm an nummies! Nu wan make mista angwy- OWIES! Pwease, nu mowe huwties! Nu mo-”
You slowly press down on his head, eliciting a muffled screech of pain, and then his skull pops. His body spasms once as warm blood splashes onto your Crocs and soaks your toes. Damn, that felt good.
“Nice mista, pwease! Fwuffies jus wan gu way! Pwease wet fwuffies weave!”
“Nope. You fucked with the wrong guy. You’re all dead now.”
You pick up the mewling foal and are about to drop-kick it into the field when a rustling in the grass makes you spin, ready to stomp another fucking fluffy.
Oh shit, it’s Joseph, your fat, orange tomcat. Well, ‘yours’ in the sense that he hangs around your property and sometimes tolerates your presence while he eats mice and other vermin. You almost stomped him.
“Hey Joseph. What’re you doing out this late?”
Normally he’s curled up in the ramshackle barn, staying warm on top of the old street light that lights up the back side of the barn. You really need to replace the bulb on the one facing your house, but you left it burned out because the light shines right into your bedroom while you’re trying to sleep.
You walk up onto the porch, Joseph following, when you feel the foal wriggle in your hand and remember it’s there.
“Hey Joe, want a new toy?”
You take that as a yes, and translate Joseph rubbing against your leg as added confirmation. You toss the little pegasus foal underhanded and it lands in the grass.
“SPEEEEEEEP! CHEEP! CHEEP! CHEEP!”
Oooh, he didn’t like that! Ha ha! Joseph’s attention is quickly attracted by the loud, frantic cheeping and he hops off the porch to investigate, poofy tail twitching back and forth. The fluffies under the porch start crying and you reach over to turn off the water, since all it’s doing is running up your water bill. The ones smart enough not to panic and run out where you could stomp them have probably just moved away from the water soaking into the ground.
“Huuhuuu! Munsta has babbeh! Pwease, nice kitteh-munsta! Nu huwt babbeh! Babbeh gud babbeh!”
“Nice mista, pwease gif back babbeh!”
“Go to hell.”
Joseph’s tail lashes back and forth furiously, and he gently pats the little foal with one paw. It turns its head blindly and feebly tries to crawl away on little legs that can’t support it. Joseph gently bats it with first one paw, then the other, and the little foal keeps trying to escape, unable to see where the ‘monster’ is and utterly incapable of getting away.
“Cheep! Cheep! Chirp! Cheep!”
Suddenly, Joseph smacks it, hard, with his claws out.
“SPEEEEEEEEEEP! CHIRP! CHIRP! CHIRP!”
A trio of adult fluffies burst from under the porch, bowling over Joseph before he knew what was happening, grab the foal, and run back under the porch. Joseph spits and hisses, then runs off into the night.
You grab the broom from the pantry and start shoving it under the porch, feeling it jab hard into a fluffy several times and being rewarded with further cries for mercy.
Not tonight, shitrats.
You’re Smarty. And this is bad. You’re trapped under a hoomin’s housie and can’t escape; if you try, he’ll just give everyone bad owies and forever sleepies. He’s killed at least five, not counting the other foals that were squished along with their mummah when she panicked and ran from the wawa. At least you managed to save one of the little chirpy babies, and it wasn’t too badly injured. Another mummah with plenty of miwkies for an additional baby is trying to calm it down and hug its owies better.
But the herd is still trapped. This hoomin is determined to kill your entire herd. What you thought was an abandoned house that could be a source of food and shelter to your desperate herd may become the herd’s grave. Every fluffy that made a run for it was killed. You’ve tried reasoning with the hoomin, but he won’t hear any of it. He wants you all dead.
You sigh and grit your teeth, steeling yourself for what comes next. You tried to be nice.
Now you’ll give him the sorry stick.
You’re not nearly stupid enough to think your herd can give a hoomin owies, or that sorry poopies will do anything but further enrage it. You’ve seen plenty of other smarties die horribly trying that nonsense. No, you need to fight a monster on its own level. Hoomins are ungodly powerful and wield incomprehensible magic. You’ll just have to beat it at its own game.
You turn to your best scouts; the grey pegasus stallion is your swiftest, cleverest fluffy, but his injured leggie means he can’t run very well.
You don’t need him to run. Stealth is what matters now, and a clever, charcoal-colored fluffy who can sneak through the dark…
“Yoo, yoo, an yoo: gu tu big, smewwy housie on udda end of gwassies. Get da buwnie wawa an da hoomin magic wight-makew. Fwuffies distwact dummeh hoomin whiwe yoo sneak ovuh dewe. Bwing dem back hewe.”
They nod, too used to following orders to question the odd instructions, and crawl to the far end of the porch, away from the angry hoomin.
You and several others attract the hoomin’s attention by shouting insults and vulgarities, and it keeps trying to poke you with a long sorry stick. Your three scouts wiggle out from under the porch and sneak off through the tall grass, undetected.
You’re a grey pegasus stallion. One of your weggies hurts because you landed on it wrong, but it isn’t hurt too badly. You and the remaining scouts (the other two died in the housie when you were discovered) creep through the grassies as silently as possible, while the angry hoomin yells bad words and keeps trying to give hurties to the herd. Why doesn’t he just let you all leave?
Yours is not to reason why. You have orders, and you’re going to follow them.
Once you’re far enough away that you think the hoomin won’t notice you, you stand up and hobble toward the big housie, the other scouts standing up and running inside.
This housie is much bigger, but it only has one room. The whole place smells old and not pretty, and is obviously falling apart. There are lots of ‘tools’ hanging on one wall; you know they exist for some other purpose, but the only thing you’ve ever seen any of them used for is giving hurties to fluffies. Sometimes bad fluffies, but usually good fluffies. Even little chirpy babies aren’t spared, usually. There’s a reason you’ve stuck with this herd and its smarty for so long; every other smarty you followed got his herd killed by confronting hoomins. This one is smart enough to try to get the lay of the land first, and only take over a place if no hoomins are around.
This time he screwed up, and now several of the herd are dead.
Well, it’s not really his fault. Your job was to see if the place was abandoned, and if any hoomins were there you would warn the herd and they could leave. So really, if anyone is at fault for the current dilemma facing the herd, it’s y…
Shaking your head, you try to focus on your task. What was it Smarty asked for?
The smell instantly reminds you. You’d investigated this big housie first, and the herd had passed through after you had deemed it safe; there were no nummies here, but it might make a decent housie for the herd. Smarty had investigated the bad smell you reported and said it was burnie water. He said it was for making light to see with in the funny thing next to it.
Why would he want those? If he made light, then the hoomin could see where the herd was in his hidey place and give them biggest owies!
You shrug, grip a thin wire handle on the light-maker in your teeth, and start dragging it back, favoring your injured weggie. The other scouts do the same for the burnie water, complaining about how heavy it is. You bop one on the rear; scouts have to be quiet. That’s how you got found by the bad hoomin in the first place.
The three of you drag the items back toward the housie and the sound of the angry hoomin as silently as possible. You don’t know what Smarty has planned, but you really, really hope it works.
You don’t want to have to find another herd. You especially don’t want to sleep forever.
Dammit, you can’t reach the fluffies. Every time you manage to jab one with the end of the broom, they all move to the other end of the porch and call you “poopie bweath”, “babbeh enfew”, and “yoo gif speshow huggies tu yoo daddeh’s moufie an pway wif poopies”. That one was especially creative, and was shouted at you right after you jabbed a fluffy in what you think was the eye.
This isn’t accomplishing anything. You have to get the little bastards out from under there somehow.
“Nu wowwy, hewd! Dummeh hoomin nu can huwt fwuffies, cuz he nu can see fwuffies!”
The others start chanting in a sing-song fashion, “dummeh hoomin, dummeh hoomin, nu can see, nu can see!”
Oh, they think because it’s too dark to see that they’re invincible, huh? Is that why you killed a bunch of them already? Stupid shits. You stand up to retrieve a flashlight, trying to remember where one would be, when you spot the kerosene lantern sitting on the porch.
Huh. That’s supposed to be in the barn; you haven’t used it since that power outage last winter. Whatever.
You grab the lantern, raise the wick, and lift the mantle. Then you dig around in your pockets for a Bic, flick it, and light the lantern. There. Man, did it always stink of kerosene that bad when you used it?
Raising the lantern, you crouch down on all fours again and try to see under the porch with the flame.
Dozens of eyes reflect the lantern’s flickering light as they stare at you, speechless in terror.
“Peekaboo. I see you. Now get ready to die.”
A big yellow unicorn stands up, staying just out of reach, and calmly says, “Wet fwuffies gu. We nu huwt hoomin. We weave and nevuh cum back.”
“Nope. You picked the wrong place to invade, shitrats.”
The yellow unicorn shakes his head.
“Otay. Smawty twy be weasonabwe.”
He turns to a couple other fluffies sitting next to a square can. What the hell is that? It looks like…
“Buwn da fuckew.”
It takes both fluffies, but they kick the can over and kerosene comes pouring out onto the ground, soaking into your jeans and flannel nightshirt.
“Augh, you assholes!”
You stand up, pissed that, on top of having to deal with a fluffy infestation and shit all over your kitchen floor, now you have to clean your clothes. Shit, you’ll have to rinse your clothes out before you can toss them in the washer, or everything you wash is going to smell like kerosene. Where the hell did-
You look down and realize the lantern is still on the ground where you set it and the grey pegasus that was in your kitchen is standing on the porch looking up at you.
“Gu enf yoosewf.”
He kicks over the lantern.
The kerosene inside the lantern sloshes, splashing up into the mantle and igniting as it contacts the burning wick. The glass shatters with a WHUMPF of a fireball, and then kerosene spilled on the ground bursts into flames.
So do your kerosene-soaked clothes.
Son of a bitch.
You’re Smarty. Your herd has gotten away safely; your grey scout got burnie hurties after he kicked over the light-maker, but you think he’ll be ok. His owies aren’t too bad and he still has most of his fluff.
The fluffies of your herd are sitting in the big housie the light-maker and burnie water came from, fussing over the hurt chirpy baby and scout, hugging their owies better and feeling relieved at being saved.
The hoomin screamed a lot, but after a while he fell over and rolled around and the burnies quit hurting him. He isn’t moving, but you can hear him moaning in agony. Well, it’s no worse than what he did to your friends.
The burnies are giving owies to the hoomin’s housie now. More hoomins will come to investigate, you feel sure. You should get the herd moving again; they’ll be scared of the dark, but it’s safer than waiting for a bunch of angry hoomins to come. You barely came up with a solution for one hoomin, you can’t deal with several.
Yes, you should get the herd moving.
In a little while.
For now, you’re going to watch it all burn.