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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With two Myrmidons, one on each side, Bucky slowly made his way down a long hallway in Canterlot castle, his mind still trying to take in everything from his long meeting with Clover the Clever and everything that had been said. Already, he was trying to form a plan, but he didn’t have much to go on, so there wasn’t much to plan with.

Frustrated, Bucky snorted, which caused the big female on his left to turn and look at him with a worried expression. He ignored her and kept going, the sound of her armor clacking and jangling was somehow comforting to him, but he could not say why. If anything, it should have served as a distraction.

“When you go to claim her, I want her unharmed,” Bucky instructed in a calm voice that did not give a hint at the turmoil within him.

“Understood sir,” the big female Myrmidon replied.

“She’s been banished… how are we to proceed if we return her and there are complications?” the smaller lunar pegasus male questioned in a hesitant voice.

“I am expecting complications,” Bucky responded in a firm voice. “This will work out to my advantage. I was told to seek her out and it is my intention to make her my student. That said, she will be most useful in the current situation I believe,” he added, but not elaborating.

“Princess Celestia will not be pleased about this,” the big female stated.

“Mistakes were made… it is time to correct them… and perhaps heal from them,” Bucky replied as they began to near the long hallway.

“Very wise, Lord of Winter,” the smaller male said, smaller being relative as he towered over Bucky by a great deal.

“And this is where we part ways,” Bucky announced. “It was a pleasure speaking to both of you. I trust that there is no trouble in fetching her immediately?”

“Sir, Princess Twilight Sparkle has altered the mirror so it can be used at any time. We will leave immediately. We should return before tomorrow's sundown if we are lucky… or at least tomorrow evening. Will you be at home by then? Do you want her brought there?” the big female responded, her questions carefully spoken.

“Yes… bring her to my home. It is time for a homecoming,” Bucky answered, offering a soft nod as he spoke. “And then let Princess Luna know once she has been returned. Tell her to send a message to Celestia and tell her that I have her former student. That should lure her out of her hiding… hmm… I have no way of knowing how Celestia is going to react.”

“Very well, sir. Consider it done,” the male Myrmidon said in reply.

With that, the two Myrmidons took their leave and Bucky watched them go.

 

 

Moving slowly, Bucky approached the place where The Scorned Mare was secured, and he watched as The Albatross was boarded by guard doctors armed with vaccinations. He was going to have to leave The Albatross and quite a number of griffons behind so various things could get done, and then return for them later.

Rather than go through the crowd, Bucky teleported onto the deck of the his ship and looked around, trying to take the situation in. He grinned at Lyra, who was busy shaking frost off of her pelt and frowning at him.

“I wish to depart soonish. There is much to be done, I want to see my family, is everypony going to be ready to go?” Bucky asked.

“Twilight and her friends have already cleared out. I was told to tell you that Pinkie Pie is secured in the hospital and she is being cared for. Everypony else has their own means back to Ponyville. The griffons are going to be looked after. Belisama has been vaccinated, she’s not feeling so swift and has gone back to sleep,” Lyra reported in a loud voice to be heard over the crowd.

“And where is my sweet bubbly butt matriarch?” Bucky inquired.

“Derpy is spending time belowdecks with Harper and Peekaboo. She is remarkably calm about this whole situation. We might still live,” Lyra replied, grinning broadly.

“Hmm,” Bucky hummed, and then he exploded into a massive burst of snowflakes, leaving Lyra covered in ice once again.

“Ugh, I hate when he does that!” Lyra grumped. She shook herself again, shivered, and then set about getting everything ready so they could go home.

 

 

Shivering, Derpy turned to give her husband a icy glare after he burst into existence in the room, covering everything in a dusting of snow. Harper cooed, delighted by the sudden snow, and Peekaboo giggled softly as she shook snow from her stubby wings.

“I really want to be mad at you,” Derpy mumbled from the bed, looking up at Bucky.

Falling over on the bed, Bucky looked over at his mate. He sighed softly, his barrel rising and falling with his breath, and then he reached out and pulled Peekaboo close to him, snatching her away from Derpy’s side.

“It’s selfish that I even want to be mad at you… you… you had to do a lot of killing. I’ve heard some stories Bucky. I talked with Magpie while you were off taking care of whatever business you were looking after. And now I feel awful that I was even angry about all of these… minor things after everything you had to go through, I can’t even imagine what you had to endure, and then you got shot in the head. Bucky, am I a bad wife?” Derpy said, her last words a question from her pained heart.

“No,” Bucky said as he nuzzled Peekaboo. “I worry constantly that I’m a bad husband,” he continued in a low voice, giving Peekaboo a little squeeze.

“I guess we both have our faults,” Derpy whispered. “Anyway, I’d like to say, I offer my approval, not that it matters.”

“But it does matter, love,” Bucky responded as Peekaboo wrapped her forelegs around his neck and squeezed. “It does matter to me… I don’t want there to be any resentment between the lot of us over this issue. It has been tearing me apart on the inside, it worries me that this might be an issue of contention.”

“Thanks,” Derpy replied, sounding somewhat shy. “Berry thinks all of this is funny… not the shot in the head part, but the marriage. Berry lost her mind for a while when she heard what happened. I’ve never seen her so angry. Thistle was sad, but Berry and I, we were angry. And we all had to hold one another and try to get through it.”

“Are my girls in school?” Bucky asked, changing the subject.

“Yes, they are in school and settling in. Dinky is doing okay, but Piña Colada got an official reprimand and had to stay after school the other day,” Derpy answered, a worried look upon her face. “Piña used to be so sweet and shy.”

“What did my sweet little adorable Piña do?” Bucky inquired, squishing Peekaboo down between his forelegs and using her to rest his chin upon.

“There is a colt named Steeplechase. He was tormenting Diamond Tiara. Dinky gave him a warning, Diamond Tiara didn’t do anything, Piña also warned him but then he… he used some foalish playground insults about us and our family. Piña responded badly,” Derpy explained, her eyes narrowing.

“That doesn’t tell me what happened,” Bucky said as he rubbed his chin along Peekaboo’s back, causing the foal to giggle in his grasp.

“Piña Colada punched him so hard that he was out cold for three hours,” Derpy said in a nervous voice, turning away from Bucky and staring at the wall.

“Piña stopped being shy and mousy,” Bucky said.

“I miss Piña,” Peekaboo said in a soft voice.

“You will be home to see her soon,” Bucky promised.

“A lot has happened,” Derpy said, now looking at Bucky again. “Rising Star was voted into office as a representative. Sparkler now has an active police force under her command, Loch Skimmer got a bit of a promotion because she is really good at lifting injured ponies and carrying them off to the hospital, and a lot of work has been done on the school while you were gone. Rising Star’s friend… Scorch I think is his name… he summoned up a bunch of golems made out of dirt and they went to work on the school and the dormitory towers.”

“Oh my,” Bucky stated in surprise.

“Bucky, could you do me a favour?” Derpy asked, closing her eyes and taking a very deep breath after she spoke.

“Anything for you,” Bucky offered.

“Belisama… it is going to be her first time. When you two get around to doing something. Please, try to make it as special as possible for her. I’ve heard some very distressing things Bucky. It makes my heart ache to think about what’s happened to her,” Derpy responded, her eyes still shut as she spoke, but opening when she finished. “She is going to be scared Bucky… you’re bigger than she is, and a lot of bad things have happened to her. Just… just be the pony that I know you can be when that time comes.”

“Of course,” Bucky replied. “I will do as you ask.”

“She’s one of us now… I want her looked after,” Derpy said, her voice raspy and thick with emotion. “How is your head?”

“I’m fine,” Bucky answered. “It hurts a bit but I’m okay.”

“Bon Bon told me what happened with Sentinel,” Derpy said in a pained voice as she squeezed Harper for reassurance. “Bon Bon is a good mama.”

“Mama!” Harper agreed just before she heaved a mighty yawn and making an adorable squeak. The foal rubbed her cheek against Derpy and closed her eyes. “Sleepy.”

“It is nap time already Harper?” Derpy asked.

“Go nap nap,” Harper agreed, resting her head upon Derpy’s foreleg.

 

 

“YOU DUNDERHEAD!” Ripple bellowed. “Because you had to be clever and try to get information out of Princess Luna, we are now in a world of trouble.”

“We needed some way of knowing so we could be prepared,” Sentinel argued, staring down at his own hooves with a sullen expression upon his face. “I will admit, my curiousity was our mutual undoing.”

Looking at her griffons, Ripple scowled with deep frustration. “We’ll have to go to Lugus and hope that he helps us. But Lugus might not help us and then force us to stumble through this, maybe even allowing us to fail so that we might learn.”

Neither one of them responded when the ship gave a lurch and then began to drift skyward, both of them were far too focused on the current pressing issue.

“Private Loki!” Ripple snapped.

“Ma’am, yes ma’am!” Loki replied, snapping to attention.

“You have some actual combat experience considering your background as a pit fighter. The Raptors are to be a scout unit. Spies. Intelligence. This is going to mean possibly crawling into tiny places… you know, sneaky stuff. What sort of weapons might you recommend for such a unit?” Ripple questioned, staring Loki in the eye and making him squirm uncomfortably. “Speak plainly,” she commanded.

“Well, big weapons are right out,” Loki replied right away. “Swords, spears, axes, maces, all of those things are trouble if you are crawling through a drain… I have experience with that actually… My master, bless his beak, he sent me to assassinate one of his rivals. I crawled up through the sump hole after going through the sewer. I waited for him and when he sat down, I stabbed him right in the groin with a dagger. Worked out real well.”

“Loki, you scare me and disgust me,” Ripple admitted. “Which is why I like you.”

“Aw, thank you,” Loki said, his crest rising. “Anyhow, daggers, darts, garrotes, and slings… we could do well with slings. They’re small, fold up, stay out of the way, and sling stones are deadly.”

“Private Loki, you are a genius,” Sentinel said, his eyes going wide.

“Sir, thank you sir,” Loki replied, blinking in surprise. “My nanny said I was a bit of a cat brain and I didn’t get good sensible avian intelligence.”

“I’m having an idea,” Ripple announced. “A really big idea involving father’s spell jars,” the pegasus filly said, her eyes narrowing with pure malicious intent as she peered at Loki, causing the small griffon to peer at her curiously.

“They would make excellent sling ammo,” Sentinel said, cottoning on to his sister’s plan. He grinned. “You know, I think we can make this work.”

 

 

 

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