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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Bucky lay upon the hospital gurney, limp and unmoving, and an army of doctors had already begun to mobilise. Agnetha was half on and half off of his gurney, still trying to help. Zebras and unicorns were filling the room, and there was a lot of shouting about how to fit Lugus on a gurney that was only half as large as it needed to be.

It was in the middle of the chaos that Agnetha, who was peering at Bucky’s headwound with narrowed eyes, trying to see just how bad it was, noticed something shiny just beneath the skin as blood continued to ooze out.

“Belisama! Get your little talons over here right this instant!” Agnetha shouted over the chaos. She looked over at a zebra who was busy looking at Bucky’s head.

Flying over, Belisama carefully hovered over Bucky’s gurney and looked down at her bloodied husband, barely able to contain her own emotions. Her body quivered with fear and it made hovering difficult.

“Right there, just below the surface of the skin, there is something shiny. Reach in there with your tiny talons and pull it out,” Agnetha commanded, pointing at Bucky’s wound with her own talons.

Belisama felt a strange feeling overcome her and with a small squawk realised that she was no longer flying. She was surrounded in a magenta magical aura that steadied her in the air over Bucky, keeping her perfectly still. She didn’t know who was doing it, but was thankful that it steadied her talons. She peered into the wound, which Agnetha wiped with a talonfull of gauze to clear away some of the blood for a moment. She saw something shiny. She reached out her left talons, the talons she was most dexterous with, and using her middle talon-finger and her thumb talon, she pinched the shiny bit of metal just under the surface of Bucky’s skin and plucked it out.

Holding it up, she realised she had a wad of lead and copper in her talons, covered in blood and a few bits of flesh. It was flattened. Both Belisama and Agnetha studied the squashed bullet.

“It never went through his skull,” Agnetha shouted to the rest of the room. “I don’t know how, but this is a flesh wound we’re dealing with!”

 

 

“You doing okay Bon Bon?”

Still covered in blood, Bon Bon looked up at Twilight Sparkle and offered a weak smile. “No,” Bon Bon admitted.

“Look, sorry about what Applejack said. She feels awful about what she said about Sentinel… how is he?” Twilight questioned, her voice soft.

“They have him sedated. It took a lot of drugs to put him under. He was shot twice. Some of his ribs are cracked but not broken. One bullet tore through his leg, but they told me it passed through,” Bon Bon said in a strangled voice. “Everything I love is dangerous.”

“Bon Bon?” Twilight said curiously.

“Bucky… we all know how dangerous he is. Lyra… if ponies only knew how dangerous she was. Bucky is respectful of her power you know… and Sentinel. I just watched my colt dismember a body… I knew lunar pegasi were dangerous, but actually seeing it… it broke my heart Twilight,” Bon Bon replied hesitantly, her words slow halting.

“Any word on Lugus?” Twilight inquired.

“They took Lugus to a different part of the hospital. Yew went with him. Lyra is with Harper and Peekaboo… I hope she isn’t freaking out or having a panic attack without me,” Bon Bon said dully, her eyes glazed over. “I don’t even know whose blood I have on me.”

“Poor Spike is beside himself, he’s worried that he is going to lose his friend. He’s back on the ship so he can stay safe,” Twilight said, her words almost a sigh.

A zebra came through a door and approached both ponies slowly, her head low and her eyes narrowed. She looked exhausted. She bowed her head to Bon Bon and then to Twilight Sparkle, afterwards, she cleared her throat and stood with her head high.

“His Majesty is stabilised. His skull is covered in the same magical glass as his horn. The swelling is going to be the big problem, he is going to be paralysed for a while because of the pressure upon his neck, but I assure you, this is temporary. We were able to stitch his scalp back together. He looks much worse than he really is, so please keep that in mind when you see him. He is currently sleeping, but you may go in if you’d like,” the zebra reported. “Would you like a chance to shower? We have facilities here for the doctors and nurses.”

Nodding, Bon Bon’s head slowly bobbed up and down. “Thank you.”

 

 

Much to Bon Bon’s relief, Bucky moaned as she approached. She stood near the bed and leaned her head down, kissing Bucky on his snoot, the only place not horribly swollen out of proportion. She heard the crinkle of bandages and the strange chemical smell of disinfectants.

“Shot me in my head Bonnie,” Bucky whispered in a slurred strained voice.

“I know Bucky… how do you feel?” Bon Bon asked, her snoot inches from Bucky’s and her heart in her throat.

“Can’t move,” Bucky grumbled.

“I know Bucky. There is swelling in your neck,” Bon Bon replied, having quite some difficulty talking. “The doctors told me after I showered that you are going to be fine. We want to move you aboard The Scorned mare Bucky so you will be safe. They’ve increased the security in the hospital, but this is not a safe place like our ship is.”

“No,” Bucky groaned, struggling to speak. “No… must give speech. Need help. Need paper and pen. Will need somepony to speak for me. By sundown. Make it happen.”

“Alright Bucky. I’ll see what I can do. I’ll get Twilight Sparkle and if you feel strongly about this, I’ll do what I can to make sure this happens,” Bon Bon responded in a soft voice.

“Belisama… get Belisama to speak. New wife must learn her place in our herd. Must act like queen she is,” Bucky mumbled in a raspy voice. “Don’t take no for answer. Ruffle feathers if you must.”

“I will speak with her Bucky,” Bon Bon promised. “I’m going to go find a pen and some paper and then I will be right back.”

 

 

“How is Lugus?” Bon Bon asked Yew Wood, who looked miserable.

“He’s alright the doctors say. He lost a lot of blood. He’s a really big griffon and the bullet was teeny tiny by comparison. It didn’t hit anything vital and lodged just behind his ribs, just missing a lung,” Yew explained in reply, her face pinched with worry and fear. “How is Sentinel?”

“They still have him sedated after what happened. I don’t like it. I’ve demanded that they stop. Sentinel is no threat at all. He didn’t hurt me and to be completely fair, that minotaur did just try and kill Sentinel’s father. I’m actually really angry at how Sentinel is being treated,” Bon Bon said, gritting her teeth somewhat as she spoke.

“And Bucky?” Yew inquired.

“Sleeping. I helped him write a speech and it wore him out. He wants to address the nation as the sun sets. I’m supposed to make Belisama read what was written,” Bon Bon answered as she sat down in a chair. “He can’t even control his own bodily functions. They have him in diapers. He’s in no position to be going out, but he was pretty insistent about it. I don’t know what to do or how we’re going to get him out there, but he had a nurse issue a press release for him already so I guess we’re on.”

“We can’t let him be seen in public with diapers on!” Yew protested, her voice an angry over emotional squeak.

“I guess we’ll cover him with a blanket,” Bon Bon said. Very much against her will, Bon Bon yawned, covering her face with a hoof. “I’m exhausted Yew… I don’t know how much more of this day I take.”

“My apologies ladies,” a voice said. “But I couldn’t help but overhear your troubles,” a tall stallion said as he entered the waiting room.

“You shouldn’t be in here!” Bon Bon shouted. “Security!”

“I am security,” the stallion replied. He was wearing a long flowing black cloak that covered his whole body and only a pale white muzzle stuck out from under the hood. “Believe me, I come on orders from the highest levels of authority. My name is…” the tall figure said, his voice trailing off. “My name is Ash Tanto.”

“For a moment it sounded like you didn’t know your own name,” Bon Bon said suspiciously.

Pulling back his hood, the stallion revealed his face, smiling at the two mares. He was pale, a soft white that was almost pink as the skin beneath showed through his thin pelt, and his eyes were bright, pink, and piercing. His mane was thin, wispy, and white.

“Are you an albino?” Bon Bon asked, looking at the pale pony.

“Something like that,” Ash replied.

“So who sent you?” Bon Bon demanded, glaring up at the tall bony looking figure.

“My sisters. I was sent to look after my sibling,” Ash said in a low chuckle.

“Who are you really?” Bon Bon questioned, her eyes narrowing as she peered at the enigmatic figure. “And why do you call Bucky your sibling?”

“Because he is. And who I am is not important,” Ash replied in a soft voice. He took off his cloak, revealing his body. He was a tall gaunt earth pony of bony build, and almost looked more horse like than pony. Using his teeth, he dropped his cloak upon Bon Bon, who was immediately buried in it.

Struggling to escape the black expanse, Bon Bon let out a startled cry. The fabric, if it could even be called that, was the blackest thing she had ever seen. It was soft, silky, and flowed like water as she worked to get her head free. She finally wadded the cloak up in her forelegs and looked up at the tall pony standing over her, her eyes wide and just a little angry. “Who are you?”

“Ash Tanto,” the tall gaunt stallion replied. “But that is just one name among many. Cover your husband with my cloak. I give you my solemn oath, it will keep him safe. Tell him to keep it, I have others, but that one is special. If you will excuse me, I have duties to attend to. Hospitals always keep me busy. There are many who need my comfort in the most troubling moments of their lives.”

“Who sent you?” Bon Bon demanded, still hoping for an answer. The cloak felt strangely cold in her grasp and Bon Bon felt a prickle of fear.

“Three sisters. Bucky’s three sisters. You will be meeting them soon when they give you the purgative and restorative elixirs for you and all of your friends, and the griffons you are now responsible for,” Ash answered, looking down at Bon Bon patiently.

The tall stallion moved away from Bon Bon, backing away slowly for some distance before turning around and walking away.

“Thank you,” Bon Bon said, feeling relief that the stallion was gone, but also strangely comforted by his visit. “Thank you whomever you are!” she called out once again.

 

 

Four figures gathered in a large comfortable room, a zebra, a unicorn, and two earth ponies. Three were female and sitting down in comfortable chairs, sipping tea, and the fourth, a tall gaunt stallion, eased himself down into a chair with a grunt.

“You seem to have misplaced something important, brother,” Atropos said, looking over at the pale figure.

“Oh, I know exactly where it is,” the pale figure replied.

“What did you do Thanatos?” Lachesis demanded, glaring at her brother.

“I gave my cloak to Bon Bon, so she could give it to our brother,” Thanatos replied, grinning a ghoulish grin.

“You horrible fiend! What have I told you about you and your pranks!” Clotho scolded, baring her teeth at her brother.

“Prank?” Thanatos said, looking as innocent as possible. “I am concerned for his safety. The cloak will keep him safe. Accusing me of pranks… it was you that allowed him to be shot in the head just so he would fall in line with your hatred of firearms,” he added in a voice dripping with sarcasm.

“Telling him about it or explaining to him our reasons wouldn’t have brought him around. He’s thick headed,” Atropos muttered.

“Morta, you’re a bitch,” Thanatos stated. “Thick headed indeed.”

“Don’t call me that, you ghoul,” Atropos retorted in a cross sounding voice.

“Our brother is now properly motivated. He will use his divine nature to wage war upon firearms and we will finally be rid of those hated things,” Lachesis grumbled over her teacup as she held it in her telekinesis, which seemed to be coming from nowhere.

“I’m sorry for calling you a ‘bitch’ Morta,” Thanatos teased.

“Call me Morta one more time… just one more time… I will find a way to get even with you somehow,” Atropos snarled at her brother.

“Forgive me sister,” Thanatos apologised in a sincere voice. “Real shame sending that poor minotaur to his death just to make your point… you heartless bitch.”

“He was going to die anyway when he was going to attempt to kill Bocor Oya and Grand Sorcerer Canterberry. I simply repurposed his death. Foolish minotaur… I’ll not let Tradewinds and the Sea of Grass be plunged into civil war,” Atropos retorted angrily.

“Having our brother shot in the head was regrettable, but there can be no doubt that he is now on our side of the firearms issue. This was for his own good,” Clotho said in a sad voice, staring down into her teacup and looking guilty. “He was already being entranced by the forbidden romance of the damnable objects.”

Lachesis looked up and over at both of her sisters. “We all know how stubborn he is. Was there any other way to make this point to him? He was already falling in love with the damn things. He thought he’d try to find the good in them. The world will be a safer place once he figures out a way to be rid of the awful things.”

“Do you really think he can?” Thanatos questioned, raising his eyebrow and looking at Lachesis with his piercing gaze.

“I can’t see the outcome of this future, but I trust in my brother’s knack to defeat his enemies,” Atropos responded, looking over at Thanatos. “And shame on you… leaving your cloak with War. You’re sick Thanatos!”

“Oh come on sister… it is amusing,” Thanatos whined to his sister. His contorted suddenly and became serious. “I want him safe. I couldn’t think of any other way to make sure.”

“Don’t complain Morta… at least Thanatos is on board with our plan,” Clotho said to her sister.

“Stop calling me Morta!” Atropos snapped.

“War is going to get in so much trouble wearing that cloak,” Lachesis groaned.

“Sundown approaches. Come, let us finish our tea and disguise ourselves. We have history to observe,” Atropos said, looking at her siblings with wide eyes.

 

 

 

 

 

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