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 sun was racing towards the western horizon as The Scorned Mare headed for Tradewinds, The Albatross in tow. A small fleet traveled with them, the Hinterlands were still considered dangerous, and there was a sense of triumphant joy after the historical events of the afternoon. In the long history of the mid-to-modern era, nothing like the current treaty had ever taken place, and many called it the dawning of the new age.

Princess Twilight Sparkle was already being called the architect of this new era, while Bucky was being called the enforcer, the agent that ensured that change happened. A world wide war had been averted and several agents of the press from the Sea of Grass had already been speaking with Twilight about her visions for the future.

During a later communication, Bocor Oya promised that the merchants who had supplied the griffons with the provisions needed to aid them in global conquest would be held responsible. Already, the Sea of Grass was sending agents to Minos to investigate the merchant’s guilds, and more agents to the small diamond dog kingdom that had aided Griffonholm.

Ships had been dispatched to the Shetlands, which eased Bucky’s mind considerably. Agents had been sent to the Minnowrock Isles to offer them aid and assurance. The entire archipelago was being seized and placed under the protection of the new Equestrian and Sea of Grass alliance.

Bucky could scarcely imagine Princess Celestia and Princess Luna’s reaction to the messages that assistance was required. He knew that Princess Luna would comply, it was, afterall, she who had told him that The Scorned Mare was her sovereign territory. He worried that there would be tension between the sisters once again and he would be the cause.

The old era of diplomacy involving the noble houses was dead, with protection coming at a price and lip service as the only real return. Bucky could not help but feel that this is how it should be, the royals being involved in diplomacy directly, using their influence to keep the world safe, calm, and secure. House Avarice had profited greatly from the tensions in the world, selling peace and the promise of safety. Bucky, the nascent alicorn of war, accepted no coin for what he did and offered deterrence… or else.

Bucky took no small amount of comfort in knowing that Twilight Sparkle, the Princess of Friendship, was already being seen as a world influence and leader, bringing peace and the promise of prosperity to the world with a simple stroke of a pen.

The sun, racing towards the western horizon, was setting upon the old world, and when the sun rose again tomorrow, it would be rising over a new world, a new era of cooperation and security.

 

 

With a tired sigh, Bucky allowed his head to fall back into the overstuffed cushion, weariness overtaking him as he held Harper in his forelegs, clutching his foal tightly to his chest. Harper, content to be held, was nearly asleep, her head resting on the crook of Bucky’s neck where it broadened out towards his shoulder. The foal’s eyes were closed and Bucky occasionally patted her gently with his stump. Beside him on the small sofa was Peekaboo, sound asleep, tuckered out after a long day of being a pegasus foal.

The calm and the quiet were exactly what Bucky needed after nearly suffering a panicked meltdown earlier. Being an introvert who was the center of attention in such a large crowd was troubling for Bucky, and he was glad it was over.

“The world that both of you are going to grow up in is a very different one than I grew up in,” Bucky whispered to both foals. “I can’t even begin to imagine just how different everything is going to be. It’s a real shame I won’t be here to see it for very long. I wonder if I’ll live long enough to see you grow up and have foals Harper.”

Closing his eye, Bucky squeezed Harper just a little tighter. “Time grows ever shorter. So much work to do and so little time to do it. And you Harper, you are just the beginning. You’re going to have so many brothers and… oh wait, you’re going to have so many sisterssoon. Derpy and Berry both will have foals come spring. Thistle should have hers sometime around Hearth’s Warming. Still have to work on getting Bon Bon and Lyra fat with foals. And Belisama too I suppose. Princess Platinum is going to be so upset with me.”

Harper’s only response was a tiny squeaky fart, but thankfully nothing that required a diaper change. The little unicorn was asleep, her mouth open, a stream of drool running down Bucky’s pelt, staining it a darker shade of tan.

 

 

Entering their cabin, Bon Bon was greeted by a heartwarming sight. Bucky was sound asleep on the small sofa, Harper and Peekaboo piled together beside him. Moving quietly, she pulled a blanket off of the bed and threw it over the sleepers on the sofa. Carefully, cautiously, having heard from Belisama that Bucky was ever so treacherous even in his supposed sleep, Bon Bon kissed Bucky on the cheek and then backed away, hoping he would not wake.

She checked the thermostat, knowing that Bucky needed a cool room if he was to have any chance of sleeping well at all, turned off the lights, and then quietly exited, closing the door behind her as softly as possible.

Sighing contentedly, Bon Bon headed off to find Lyra.

 

 

“How bad do you think the damage is going to be?” Lyra inquired, one eye narrowed, the other wide, her eyebrow raised high in a quizzical expression.

“Damage?” Bon Bon asked in reply, looking at Lyra with an equally quizzical expression upon her face.

“Derpy,” Lyra stated, saying one word and nothing more.

“Oh I’d imagine that our matriarch is going to be slightly peeved upon hearing the news, but once she understands everything that has gone on and the good that will come from it, she will calm down,” Bon Bon said reassuringly. “And when she learns more about Belisama, I am counting on her to go into ‘mother bird mode’ which will make our task easier.”

“Task?” Lyra questioned in a monosyllabic response.

“Yes… your mission, should you choose to accept it, will be to generate sympathy for Belisama by telling Derpy exactly what happened to Belisama and what almost happened to Belisama, sparing no details at all. We want Derpy so angry at what almost happened to Belisama that she forgets that she is angry with Bucky and starts to love on him instead for being a gentlepony and saving Belisama from a fate worse than death,” Bon Bon explained patiently.

“So you are saying that the trick to managing Derpy is to direct her pegasus rage towards a worthy target and away from us… she is going to be furious, so we need to give her something to be really furious about so she won’t wing slap us to death?” Lyra summarised in a hesitant still trying to understand what was going on voice.

“Correct Lyra,” Bon Bon said, nodding slowly.

“So I’m going to do my pathetic groveling bit, ham it up a whole lot, try to act as emotional as possible, which really won’t be acting because what almost happened to Belisama really gets under my skin… and tell Derpy in graphic detail about Belisama’s sister Bandua, how she was literally raped to death and then was being cooked to be eaten, and how Bucky came waltzing in and rescued Belisama, who gave herself to him in gratitude, and is now one of the queens of the griffons and Bucky had to marry her,” Lyra said, outlining the detailed points of the plan.

“Yes Lyra,” Bon Bon replied, looking hopeful. “We need to get Derpy feeling protective. She’ll be all over Belisama like a foal on candy and all of her anger and rage will be directed at things other than us, which is a good thing… because let’s face it, this debacle happened under our watch. We were supposed to keep Bucky out of serious trouble and bring him back home with all of his assorted body parts still attached and in good working order.”

“So in our favour, Bucky is returning home with his remaining eye, three legs, both ears, his dangly floppy funtime bits, and everything pretty much how it was when he left home. You want to remind Derpy of this or should I?” Lyra responded.

“Oh I think I can do that,” Bon Bon stated. “You just make sure you do that pathetic grovelling thing you do, like you do to me when you are in trouble or you want something.”

“I can do that,” Lyra agreed, both eyes now narrowed. “But I am taking a real risk to my own personal safety.”

“Worried about a few wing slaps?” Bon Bon inquired of her mate.

“No… not that, I’ve been wing slapped a few times… but you know how Derpy gets when she gets… emotional. She’s gonna wanna hug something and it might be me. Emotional pegasus hugs Bon Bon… I’m gonna have to ask you for hazard pay,” Lyra answered, explaining her concern.

“What do you want Lyra?” Bon Bon asked bluntly, staring at the minty green unicorn with mild annoyance.

“Well, aside from my usual rates for hazard pay, I want assurance that you will use your big squeezable earth pony body to defend my frail skinny unicorn body from imminent pegasus huggle-harm,” Lyra replied, reaching up to brush her mane out of her eyes as she spoke.

“Okay, so if she makes a move, I’ll intercept and you retreat. I can do that. As for your hazard pay, you will get the usual hour of cuddles and kisses with all attention on you,” Bon Bon conceded.

“Pleasure doing business with you Bonnie,” Lyra said, her face splitting into a broad toothy grin and her ears perking forward. “Oh, and you have to whisper that I am the most special unicorn in the whole wide world in my ear while you hold me.”

Grinning wryly, Bon Bon silently agreed with a nod.

 

 

Feeling miserable, Belisama tried to collect her thoughts about everything that had taken place. Her stomach cramped painfully and her wings ached from tension. Her broken leg had its own heartbeat lurking just under the cast. She felt nauseous and weak. Already, doubt was setting in, harsh crippling doubt. Hunters and occasionally warriors became kings and queens. Never the servants. The servants served, the warriors fought, and the hunters provided.

The entire world had been turned upside down.

“Belisama?”

Opening her eyes, Belisama saw Agnetha looking at her in concern.

“You look awful,” Agnetha said in a worried voice.

“I feel awful,” Belisama admitted.

Sitting down on the couch beside Belisama, Agnetha gently picked up the smaller griffoness and held her tightly, stroking her softly. “I’d like to think that we are friends,” Agnetha said in a low voice. “And that there is no caste distinctions between us. We are two griffonesses caught up in extraordinary circumstances and we have nobirdy to turn to but each other.”

Calming slightly from Agnetha’s affectionate touch, Belisama took a deep breath and closed her eyes again.

“We will probably be the first griffon queens ever to work together and not treacherously conspire against one another and each other’s husbands. Our husbands are friends and will not make war against one another, either openly or hidden in the background. You and I will hopefully never have to worry about which morsel of food might be poisoned, or if an army of assassins will come in the night, and we might be the first griffon queens in history that can sleep in a room with windows… windows and not worry about our safety… can you believe that? Tannis is promising me big picture windows,” Agnetha said in a steady reassuring voice.

Unable to hold it in any longer, Belisama began to weep, her emotions finally overtaking her. She clenched her talons tightly into fists and her whole body shook from the convulsive sobs that consumed her.

“Let it out,” Agnetha whispered as she squeezed Belisama a little tighter. “It’s good to let the poison out.”

 

 

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