amnesia brainwashing brainwashverse hugbox neutral sadbox safe smarty_pants sorry_box swearing_fluffies trapped unreasonably_smart_fluffy

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Smarty Pants
Chapter 3

"White?"

White silently looked up from the newborn foals, a curious look on her face. It was the day after the birth of the foals, and all parties involved were feeling much better. The foals had even opened their eyes, a testimony to just how fast the biotoys grew and developed.

"Dis baby am bad-dyin'-baby. Gonna die," Sticky said, pointing a hoof at the runt. It managed to get its seemingly constantly gaping mouth around the nipple and started drinking, only to scrunch up its face and spit up every last drop of its mother's milk, squeaking pitifully. Unlike the rest, its eyes had not yet opened.

"Dat's mean! Why Sticky say dat?" White asked, clutching the malformed foal to her chest. It started rooting around, as if expecting to find a teat there.

"Sticky see dat, wong time ago. Odda fwend hab babies, an' hab bad baby wike dis, an' bad baby die," Sticky explained, visibly cringing at White's offended look.

"Baby nu am bad baby, Sticky wyin'!" White huffed, petting the foal with a hoof. "Nu hab saddies, baby. Sticky bein' a meanie."

Sticky sighed. "Wan' go get nummies?"

"Nu, hafta stay wif babies."

The runt died later that morning. White was inconsolable, keeping it with the rest for several hours in an attempt to get it to wake up. It was only when the body grew cold and stiff that she finally accepted that it wouldn't come back and allowed Sticky to dig a hole and bury it near the den. He put a stick in the mound as a marker. Over the course of the next week, the surviving foals grew strong and healthy. When their baby teeth came in the next day, they began to hurt White when they nursed, causing her to push them away, and a few days later, they had all been weaned.

By the end of the week, all of the foals had tripled in size, and were stumbling around the den, exploring the world around them as they played with each other. The pink griffon, named Brighty after the intense color of his fluff, was somewhat adventurous, and was the first to leave the den and start to truly explore. Interestingly, their sibling's grave became a favorite spot to play, and in Nappy, the lazy blue baby's case, a favorite spot to nap. The puffies never came around again, but the family was so caught up taking care of foals that they had all but forgotten that the other set of parents even existed. The blissful experience of this perfect fluffy family lasted all of two weeks.

One day, when Nappy was sleeping on his father's back and Brighty was persistently bugging the lazy foal, White took the other three foals for a walk. As they enjoyed the interesting sights and smells, White smelled something... It smelled like something good. Following her nose led her to a small bowl of spaghetti. She didn't see the cage and its slanted door until it was too late. As she walked over to investigate the strange, new food, the door shut behind her, trapping her and the foals inside.

Sticky, now with a dandelion weaved into his mane courtesy of Brighty, eventually found White.

"White, what happen?"

"Dunno! White see nummies, an' den White go get nummies, an' now White stuck! Nummies nu eben gud!"

Sticky, realizing exactly what was going on, broke down at the side of the cage, sobbing. At one point, he tried opening the door, but there wasn't enough space in the cage, so it just jabbed into White's side. Not understanding why their parents were sad, the foals started crying, too. When a human inevitably came for the cage, Sticky put up the best fight he could. He kicked. He headbutted. At one point, he even managed to sink his teeth into the man's leg, but was only grabbed by the scruff and dragged along as well for his efforts.

"Nu hab scawedies, babies, Mummah keep da munstahs away," White whispered, as she was driven to a fluffy obedience school in the back of a truck. She didn't understand what was going on, what happened to Sticky's sister long forgotten. Sticky did, though.

"White, dis am fowgettie-munstah-pwace!"

Upon arrival, despite the fluffies' best efforts and the screams that could be heard throughout the building, they couldn't keep their foals and chick from being taken from them. You can't just keep them forever, they said. Every good fluffy knows that, they said.

"That's a load of bullshit!" White wasn't quite sure where the outburst came from. In one moment, she and Sticky were begging the evil humans to give their babies back. In the next, she was a version of herself from months past. Whatever it was, after both were forcefully given shots, a flea bath, and had their manes trimmed, White was put in something called a 'sorry box' for the rest of the day, forced to watch a room full of obliviously happy domestics play in an environment she found to be overstimulating from a small, cramped kennel. Sticky looked so lost down there, and she wanted to be with him, but no matter how much she banged at the bars, she couldn't get the box to open.

The walls and floor were a light pink. Toys of all sorts of obscenely bright colors littered the room, standing out enough to be visible even from where White was. In the background, a widescreen TV played My Little Fluffy on a loop. The video was a cartoon that contributed to the subtle brainwashing this entire place was made to accomplish, rewarding the fluffy characters who conformed to domestic social standards and punishing the ones who didn't, all while being just long enough for most fluffies to fail to notice that it was being repeated over and over again.

At the end of the day, White was taken to a different, slightly more spacious cage, and this time, Sticky and all the other fluffies were in cages, too, but it was still a cage, Sticky still wasn't anywhere close to where she was, and it was still horrible. White didn't sleep much that night. She and three other defiant fluffies banged at the bars of their cages and screamed at the top of their lungs until they were taken into a soundproof room so that the other fluffies could sleep. Then, they screamed some more, and then, when they had screamed themselves hoarse without getting anywhere, they talked.

"What am odda fwuffies' names?"

"Buddahcup!"

"Tuffie."

"Pinkie!"

"Am White. Nice to meet you? Not nice pwace, but nice tu meet odda fwuffies."

"Yeah!"

"Tuffie wan' go home!"

"Pinkie, too!"

"White wan' go home, too. Wan' see babies."

The next day, after begrudgingly promising to be a 'good fluffy' to avoid another stay in the sorry box, White was strapped into a high chair and given a bowl of dry Cheerios and orange juice in a plastic sippy cup for breakfast. Several fluffies just talked, while many others ate, and yet others played with their food, one simply spitting mouthfuls of orange juice into the cereal and staring at it. At one point, a fluffy shoved everything off her table and onto the floor, and was promptly beaten with a stick for it. White ignored it all and ate and drank ravenously, not remembering a time when she'd ever experienced this much food in one sitting.

Watching the daycare from an elevated kennel was one thing, but taking part in it was an entirely different story. The room was huge to a small creature like her, and it was unnaturally, eerily bright and flat for White's taste. She felt so tiny, everything was too much, she just wanted to go home, where was Sticky...

"Nyu fwend?" White was startled out of her fetal position by the appearance of a gray pegasus with a little, black bowtie.

"Gu 'way, stupid! White nu wan' pway wif you!" White snapped. Immediately, the fragile domestic teared up and ran away, loud cries of 'huu, huu, huu' heard throughout the room.

"Mih- Miss V! Huu... White fwuffy am big meanie!" The pegasus cried, pointing at White as he childishly clung to the caretaker's leg.

"Do you need another day in the sorry box, little lady?" White bit the caretaker.

In a way, the obedience school was already playing its role in turning White and Sticky into perfect, little babies to be sold as pets for rich people. Throughout the day, she and Sticky rarely thought of the babies. Everything was just a constant stream of sensory overload for the feral fluffies, and they were too agitated to think of anything else. The next day, they found each other. Alone, the sights and sounds were too much, but together, they laughed and played with a previously unseen enthusiasm, White beating all the records on an electronic memory game and Sticky racing a bunch of pegasi without understanding why the game felt so familiar. The joy of their reunion made it impossible to be anything besides happy. When they had tired themselves out, instead of the clouds, they watched My Little Fluffy, absorbing all the domestic ideals that came with it.

Aside from different choices of food, for the most part, each day was exactly the same. Wake up. Eat breakfast. Play. Eat lunch. Play. Eat dinner. Play. Bath time. Go to bed. Rinse and repeat. The giggles and murmurs of happy, friendly fluffies blended together with the constant blaring of My Little Fluffy to create a persistently happy atmosphere. It was heaven for the former ferals. There were no itchy fleas, food shortages, or sickness. But there was a strict set of rules in place, too. Good poopies go in the litter box. Special huggies are bad. Be nice. No whining, no complaining, no being dissatisfied with what you're given. Humans don't have to explain themselves. Follow the rules, or you'll go to the sorry box.

There were cultural expectations, too, not enforced, but still forced onto fluffies by the video in the background. Earthies were strong, but stupid. Pegasi were fast, and had a ridiculous infatuation with the idea of flying. Unicorns were smart. Alicorns were pretty princesses to be admired and worshipped. And the scariest thing about it was that it was working. White, who had never gotten the appeal of racing and never even considered the possibility of flight, now excitedly participated in pegasus games and dreamed of flying through the sky and napping on a cloud. Sticky, whose favorite hobby had once been racing, experimented with the memory game and other unicorn toys.

They saw one of the babies again. Just one, and by that point, neither party remembered who the other was. They became friends. Not parents and child, just friends. One day, their cutie marks disappeared. The pink oval on White's flank and the green heart on Sticky's faded away overnight. White wasn't smart anymore, not even remembering the first letter of the alphabet. Sticky forgot how to be people smart. They had been stripped of everything that made them unique.They were just another pair of stupid fluffies, too caught up in the present to remember the past. They had been taken apart and put back together in the shape of things forced to be innocent in an entirely unrealistic way. Things that would make their old selves gag, that wanted to be taken home and loved like the dumb babies they were. The most messed up thing about it all was that they were happier this way.

When they were deemed 'adoptable' and sent far, far away, never to see each other or their old home again, they didn't complain, because that wasn't what good fluffies did.

~ end ~
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Tags amnesia brainwashing brainwashverse hugbox neutral sadbox safe smarty_pants sorry_box swearing_fluffies trapped unreasonably_smart_fluffy
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CwinicawDepwession: Nice, I like your take on fluffy brainwashing. I've read a good handful of stories where their version was "taser to the head resets fluffy"