The Chase

Bucky Bitters struggles to escape the airborne affections of Derpy Hooves after a chance encounter caused them to bump noses together. His real mistake was trying to comfort the mare after the snoot-bump. Little does the poor stallion realise that their meeting was only the prologue to a journey that will change not only his life, but the lives around him forever.

This story is a sequel to The Catch

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“THE PURPLE ONE IS SUBDUED!”

“I CAN’T FIND THE UGLY BLACK HORNED ONE!”

“I’M GONNA KILL YOU, YOU GOLDURN POLECAT BASTARDS! DIE!”

“Twilight -gurgle- nooo!”

Bucky awoke to the sounds of screaming, his eye flying open as he tried to take in what was going on around him. The air was filled with some kind of irritating dust, it burned his lungs slightly and made his eye water, but it was not incapacitating. He rose from the chaise lounge and everything around him moved in slow motion as adrenaline flooded his body. So much was going on all at once.

Applejack was on her hind hooves, her front hooves raised in a boxer’s defensive stance, and Rarity was behind her in the bunk bed, her horn glowing. There was a griffon beak down in a pool of blood at Applejack’s hooves, and she was busy punching the second one to death, his beak already cracked.

A griffon had pulled Pinkie Pie out of bed and she was currently mid swing, the griffon had her by one hind leg and was about to smash her head first into the wall. Pinkie Pie was screaming, a high pitched squealing scream of pure terror, and it was this sound that had pulled Bucky from his slumber.

On the floor, Fluttershy was limp and unmoving, held beneath a griffon who was wasting no time, he had her pinned down and his spiky member was hard and ready for the fun to come. A vacant expression was on Fluttershy’s face, and at this point, she was little more than a warm body.

Twilight was limp, unmoving, in her bed, Flash Sentry was pinned down on top of her, and a griffon had his talons around Flash Sentry’s throat. On the floor by the bed, Rainbow Dash lay writhing in a rapidly growing puddle of blood.

Lugus was engaged, trying to fight enemies in a room too small for him to fight effectively in, his axe still upon his back. The bookcase in the back of the room was open, revealing a passage behind it. Ripple was at Lugus’ side, her eyes clenched shut, her forelegs raised in a defensive boxer’s stance, she was bloodied but still fighting, and somehow, Bucky realised that Ripple had been blinded by whatever was in the air.

There was a red brown blur and a roar as Sentinel launched himself at the griffon attacking Flash Sentry, and it was in this chaos that Bucky found himself trying to take in, with everything happening all at once.

“NO!” Bucky cried, his magic flaring.

Inches from the wall, Pinkie Pie’s movement was arrested, she was suddenly wrapped in a blue-green glow of magic. Her attacker vanished, and reappeared a moment later, half in and half out of the wall that he had just been teleported inside of. Fluttershy’s attacker also vanished, suffering the same fate. Pinkie Pie was dropped to the upper bunk of a bed, gently, and she lay there limply where she had been placed.

Applejack uppercutted the griffon she was fighting, whipping his head backwards, causing his neck to snap, and as his limp body hit the ground, Applejack moved towards Fluttershy, her teeth bared, her eyes bloodshot and filled with a terrible fury.

Sentinel collided with the griffon attacking Flash Sentry, and there was the horrible sounds of shattering bones. Biting down on the griffon’s foreleg, Sentinel bore the much larger griffon to the floor, stomped down upon upon the griffon’s chest, and with a jerk of his head, Sentinel ripped the griffon’s foreleg free from its shoulder, causing blood to go spurting and spraying all around the room. Not done, Sentinel spat out the leg and with one terrible savage bite, seized upon the griffon’s throat, tearing it out with one violent upwards tug. He was so busy that he did not see the griffon coming up behind him.

“No!” Spike cried, inhaling sharply as the griffon approached Sentinel from behind. The little dragon released a terrible gout of flame, incinerating the griffon and filling the room with the smell of burning hair and feathers.

Not sure what to do, Bucky held back his magic, knowing that if he unloaded with everything he had, he would kill friend and foe alike. Focusing his efforts, he went to work on Lugus’ attackers, he pulled Ripple back away from the danger, and in a few moments, the last of the griffon attackers were felled, telekinetic bolts of energy having neatly bored holes through their skulls.

Bucky was on his hooves in a moment, heading towards Twilight’s side, wondering what was wrong with her. Others were coming around as well, and as he drew near, he saw her on the bed, panting heavily, her horn and part of her face covered in a black waxy substance. Flash Sentry was clutching his throat, his eyes bloodshot, he gasped and croaked, still trying to draw in air.

“Don’t touch it Bucky!” Lugus shouted, wiping at his eyes with his wings, tears streaming down into his feathers. “Don’t touch the black stuff!”

Unable to help Twilight, Bucky lifted Rainbow Dash up off the floor, trying to figure out where the blood was coming from. He found the cause right away, a long gash stretched from ear to eye, with the torn flesh ending right at the eyelid. Just a tiny bit more and Rainbow Dash would have lost an eye to whatever had slashed her face open. She was limp but trying to talk, her eyes unfocused.

“Fluttershy!” Rarity cried, trying to rouse her dear friend.

There was no response. Applejack and Rarity both tried to get Fluttershy to respond, to no avail. The yellow pegasus remained limp, her eyes vacant, locked away in a catatonic state. Rarity lifted her in a telekinetic field and set her down upon a bed.

“I killed something… oh no I killed something… I KILLED SOMETHING WITH MY TEETH… I KILLED SOMETHING THAT TALKS WITH MY TEETH AND THISTLE IS GOING TO KILL ME!”

“Sentinel, enough,” Bucky barked. “Go look after Ripple, she’s blind.”

“Yes… fa… fath… yes sir,” Sentinel stammered in a weak voice, obeying his father’s command, Spike moving off with him at his side.

Lugus was busy trying to remove the goop from Twilight, who was screaming now, her shrill cries of pain filling the room with a dreadful sound. Lugus worked with the blanket, trying to wipe away the black tarry waxy substance, revealing burned and blistered flesh beneath it.

“Magic poison,” Lugus explained, his eyes blinking rapidly and watering. “Works well on unicorns, stops their magic for a while while it remains on their horn. Burns anything with magic. Whatever you do, do not try washing this away with water, it will just spread it over the skin even more.”

“Applejack, get over here! Apply pressure on Rainbow Dash’s head! Try to stop this bleeding, I am going to secure that open passage!” Bucky commanded, stepping away from the bed where Twilight, Flash Sentry, and Rainbow Dash were all laid out together.

Moving towards the hidden passage behind the bookshelf, Bucky tried to control his growing rage. The passage was dark, narrow, and impossible to see down. Just a few feet down the hallway, Bucky saw something that made his heart almost stop.

There was a unicorn, or what was left of her. She had no legs, no ears, no tail, her body only existed as life support for her horn. She had no eyes, and she lay there on the ground, wheezing faintly. Her whole body was covered in scars and it was clear she had been recently tortured, probably to make her perform whatever spells had been recently used.

Gently, Bucky lifted her in his magic, his rage now seething, a horrible darkness growing within him like a cancerous nightmare. He brought her into the room and laid her down on the chaise lounge where he had been sleeping.

Upon seeing the mutilated unicorn, Pinkie Pie began screaming, kicking and flailing around in the bed, screaming herself hoarse in terror. After several screams, she fell silent, her face covered with her front hooves, her eyes closed tightly.

“Ripple, you okay?” Bucky asked, trying to gain some kind of control over the situation all around him.

“I’m good… I got the dust bag right in the face… I’m alright though… Sentinel, pour some water over my face,” Ripple said in a gritty voice full of pain.

Bucky turned his attention back to the passage behind him, and using his magic, he sealed it off with ice, a massive plug of ice that filled the passageway and made it impassible for the time being. He turned his attention back to Twilight, feeling a great deal of worry.

“It burns so much! IT BURNS!”

“I know,” Lugus said soothingly, wiping more of the greasy substance away from Twilight’s now blistered skin and her horn. Sparks were coming off of her horn now, enough of the goop had been wiped away to allow some of her magic to return. “Hold still Twilight, you don’t want this in your eye,” Lugus warned.

“Lugus, it hurts,” Twilight whimpered, unable to stop squirming. “I’ve never been in this much pain in my whole life!”

“I know… I’m sorry, I’m doing all I can,” Lugus replied in a strained voice that was full of pain. His own eyes were bloodshot and watering from the dust attack.

“I can’t get the bleeding to stop,” Applejack grunted, pressing down on Rainbow Dash’s forehead. “The blood just keeps coming no matter what I do.”

“Twi… I feel woozy Twi,” Rainbow Dash moaned in a muffled voice from under the blanket pressed to her head. “Speak to me Twi… I’m cold and I don’t feel right.”

“You hush with that kind of talk Rainbow!” Applejack shouted angrily, applying more pressure on the blanket she had against the blue pegasus’ forehead.

Bucky began piling the bodies of the griffons in the hallway behind the bookcase, except for the ones merged with the walls. He left those on display for whomever might come into this room later. He wanted them to be seen. They were his warning.

With a loud cry, Twilight teleported out of bed, leaving behind the rest of the goop on the bed behind her, and she reappeared in the middle of the room looking furious. She saw the mutilated unicorn and her eyes blazed with incensed anger. An odd choking sound gurgled in her throat, and she turned away, unable to look at the legless unicorn any longer. She stomped over to the bed and leaned over Flash Sentry, trying to make sure he was okay.

Everything was still in chaos.

Unable to speak, Flash Sentry could only croak and make weak noises of pain. His eyes were bloodshot and his cheeks were purple. Blood vessels in his ears had popped, turning the thin skin of his ears purple as well. He was still struggling to  draw breath.

Shaking her head, she leaned over Rainbow Dash next, trying to see if her friend was okay. Rainbow Dash’s eyes were still unfocused and Twilight stood there helplessly, not knowing what to do.

“Rainbow is going to need to be cauterised. She is bleeding out,” Bucky said, trying to assert some control over the situation. “We need to move quickly, stop her bleeding, and then flee this place.”

“We have to burn her?” Twilight said, her eyes going wide with shock and fear.

“I’ll take care of it. You’ll need to hold her down,” Bucky said as he moved near the bed, his head low, his mouth set in a terrible scowl.

“No… Bucky no… I… I should do it!” Twilight stammered. “I’m her friend. I’ll do it.”

“Fine, you do it,” Bucky grunted. “Fine thin beam of heat. Pinch the flaps of skin together in your telekinesis and then just burn them together. Otherwise, she will die from blood loss.”

“Ugh, no,” Twilight moaned in protest. “NO!”

The alicorn shoved Applejack aside and pulled away the blanket. There was a growing puddle of blood in the bed under Rainbow Dash’s head, and her mane was matted with crusted blood. The pegasus flailed feebly.

“Fluttershy won’t talk,” Pinkie Pie said in a sad voice, clinging to Fluttershy, working with Rarity to try and revive her friend, to rouse her from her catatonic state.

“Father, Ripple is still blind,” Sentinel reported.

There was a faint gasp and groan from the eyeless, legless unicorn, and then she made no further sounds. Bucky shut his eye and began cursing under his breath, uncertain of his breaking point, and knowing he was nearing it rapidly.

“She’s dead,” Spike said, prodding the remains of the unicorn on the chaise lounge. “This is awful, I want to go home!”

“Twi, I feel so cold Twi!”

“Hold on Rainbow… I’m sorry… Rainbow I am so sorry… Applejack, hold her down, hug her or something, and I will keep her head still with my magic,” Twilight said as her horn flared, shedding a few sparks.

Lugus was trying to help Flash Sentry, he had pulled him from the bed and placed him upon another, and the two soldiers shared each other’s miseries silently. Lugus gave Flash Sentry a little water to soothe his tortured throat, and the orange pegasus coughed and sputtered as he tried to swallow.

“No… Twi… no… don’t burn me Twi… no… no fire… I’m scared of fire… no… NO!”

There was a hissing sound and the room filled with the scent of burning hair and flesh. A moment later, Rainbow Dash screamed raggedly, her hind hooves kicking feebly under Applejack’s body, which was pressing down on top of her.

“No… it burns, it’s hot… Twi please stop! Twi why you gotta burn me Twi!”

Bucky’s world suddenly turned yellow in the middle of one of Rainbow Dash’s screams. He felt a crushing pressure on his neck, and he was suddenly unable to breathe. He saw stars in his vision, and he could hear the sounds of his own heart echoing inside of his ears. He struggled to breathe, and heard Rarity shouting.

Fluttershy had woken up, terrified, and now clung to Bucky for comfort, slowly crushing him to death in her mindless panic. He struggled and kicked in her embrace, desperately needing oxygen. He could feel his heart thudding and there were more screams from Rainbow Dash, who cried about being on fire. Pinkie Pie began screaming and was trying to pull Fluttershy off of Bucky.

Stars filled Bucky’s vision and his vision grew dim. Sounds began to echo, and the world became a series of jumbled confused images and noises. As near as he was to death, he refused to fight back, unwilling to bring harm to Fluttershy. He could feel his jaw being crushed in her grasp.

“SLEEP!”

The terrible crushing embrace ended at the sounds of Rarity’s voice, and Bucky drew in one terrible pained gasp, trying to fill his lungs as Fluttershy fell away from him, her body falling limp to the floor. He collapsed on top of her, unable to stand, wheezing painfully, trying to get precious air back into his body.

“Bucky, you speak to me this instant! Give me some sign you are okay!” Rarity demanded, lifting Bucky’s head with her forelegs and shaking him gently.

Unable to speak, Bucky nodded weakly as he looked Rarity in the eye.

“I’ve never used a sleep spell before… I saw it in the primer you gave me… I can’t believe it worked so well,” Rarity breathed in panic, her words coming out as she panted.

“I’ve stopped the bleeding!” Twilight shouted.

“What do we do now?” Pinkie Pie said in weak frightened voice.

“We get organised and we go make sure our friends are okay,” Twilight responded.

 

 

 

 

 

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