I had been following the train tracks for almost a week, all the while telling myself over and over again that Canterlot would be the end of my sadness. Everypony would be in Canterlot, all of my friends, the Princesses - all of them waiting for me and worrying about me. I just had to find my way back, and not give up until I was reunited with my friends.
But what about the scrolls? Couldn't they have sent me a scroll by now? I couldn't send them a message myself without a specially-made scroll, but Twilight had Spike, who can send any letter to Princess Celestia, and somehow send letters to me at least. Could he control where letters went or was the letter sent to me specially enchanted by Twilight? My mind wasn't giving me any rest on it, made worse by how I never once thought of asking Spike how it all worked. There had to be a reason, something that made it impossible for them to reach me, that had to be it, and they were probably waiting for me in Canterlot, knowing I would head there as quickly as I could. Whatever explanation I gave myself, it couldn't stop me from worrying.
I had long left the dry and hot desert, following the railroad deeper into Equestria, back to where forests and grassy hills replaced barren lands and sand dunes. I had chosen to walk along the tracks when it started raining, and low rumbles of thunder began rolling through the trees. Stern warnings from Flight Camp teachers echoed in my mind about flying in storms, some of the lectures aimed only at me, and the rest of the group of fillies and colts looking at me, snickering and whispering...
I shuddered at the memory, and carried on walking in the rain. I was hungry, tired, and now getting cold. It was getting dark, and I needed to find shelter to sleep and keep out of the rain. I veered off the path the train track was taking and crossed the tree line into the forest, looking for a warren or a den that I could ask to be allowed to spend the night in. Being back amongst the forests felt more like home than the desert. There were few places that critters really settled into out there, and definitely nothing that I could squeeze into. Here, there were all kinds of creatures living in all these different kinds of homes. I was sure I could find somewhere to stay.
While I slowly made my way through the forest, I started thinking about the last several days. I had saved a lot of time by flying for the majority of the journey, but I had also lost time on searching every town I came across. After countless stops and one empty town after another, I was starting to lose hope that there was anypony between here and Canterlot. And as I assured myself again that my friends were in Canterlot and that the missing ponies would soon turn up safe and sound, I found myself growing less and less able to shake the feeling in my chest that I was lying to myself. What if there weren't any ponies? What if I was alone? What would I do? How could something like that happen? How did this even happen? Dozens of questions were buzzing around in my head, and I didn't have an answer for any of them.
My hoof took a step forward and didn't touch the ground, instead, it kept on going down. And before I could react, I was rolling and sliding down a slippery hill, coming to a crashing stop at the bottom of the hill, rolling into and a large puddle of mud. I screamed in pain as my left foreleg began burning. I sat up quickly and pulled the wounded limb in towards me, biting my lip and closing my eyes tight. I could feel the telltale warmth trickle down to my hoof, and it sticking itself to my unhurt leg. The thought was making me light headed. Walking on three limbs, I limped over to a tree and dropped my saddlebags onto the ground. I pulled out a first aid kit from one of them and set it on the grass beside me. Tentatively, I raised my left foreleg up to see it, seeing a dark stain of drying blood on my coat and more seeping from a really bad cut. I must've done it on a rock hidden in the mud, and though it made me woozy to look at it, I knew what I needed to do.
With a little dexterity, I opened a pack of sanitizing wipes and placed one onto my hoof. I paused, and took a deep breath before I quickly pressed the wipe into the cut. I held it there and grit my teeth, a high-pitched squeak finding its way out as I fought the urge to scream. Tears had formed in my eyes as the pain became much worse, like a bunch of needles were being jabbed into my foreleg at once. I held it there, though, waiting for the pain to ease before I carried on. Slowly, the stinging wore off and I cleaned the dirt away from the wound. Next, I unpacked a bandage roll, wrapping it around my leg a few times before tying it off and tearing the bandage off the roll. The treatment complete, I dropped my first aid kit back into my saddlebags and sat there silently, staring through my tear-glazed eyes at the grass and trees around me, giving myself a moment to relax.
The rain was falling around me in torrents, and the sky was rumbling with thunder and flickering with distant forks of lightning. I closed my eyes and curled up underneath the tree, deciding to give up looking for better shelter and just rest where I was. I wasn't going to get any sleep tonight, not with the weather and being soaked and cold, but at least I could rest my leg and be ready for more walking and flying tomorrow. I couldn't be too far from Canterlot, now.
Survivor Shy Gallery: [link]
Survivor Shy on FimFiction (Relaunched! Chapter Two coming soon!): [link]
My Tumblr: [link]
This right here is the first part of Chapter Two, it is also the first of two images that shall replace the scene "Look For A Purpose".
I feel that the first four images I drew for Survivor Shy are not up to my personal standards now. And so have decided to either update, redraw, or replace. "Look For A Purpose" is being replaced, "Staying Hidden" is going to be redraw, "The Old Castle" is being redrawn, and "Blizzard" shall be updated.
As for this scene and it's excerpt, I'm really damn pleased with the picture. It took me less time than I expected to complete, the only hang up I ad was writing the excerpt. I'm not 100% content with it, so it'll probably go through another draft or something before I compile all the Chapter Two scenes together for publishing on FimFiction.
Anyway, be sure to let me know what you think! I am giving you sneak previews after all!