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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Ponyville, city of disasters. Not too long ago, a magically enchanted foal had nearly caused the town to come apart, causing a massive stampede, forcing one unicorn to go to extraordinary measures to keep a foal safe. It had been, for all intents and purposes, a disaster by any measurable scale.

And the inhabitants seemed completely unphased by it now a few days later. Already, the herd was correcting, making adjustments, individual ponies acting in unison as one larger organism. Ponyville had an unusual herd structure, having all three tribes living together in close proximity, and it made them unusually resilient.

It was through this town that Berry Punch walked, her head held high. She loved this community, and all that came with it. Anypony or anyone could be accepted here, if they were open and decent. They even allowed Shetland Isles ponies to settle here, something most communities were hesitant to do.

“Ma’am!” a pony cried, moving in closer to her, his pace somewhere between a trot and a canter. “Message for you from Mister Rich,” he panted.

Berry stopped and turned towards the messenger pony, smiling at him, trying to push aside all of her harsh feelings from earlier, when she had been in Bucky’s apartment.

“Ma’am, Mister Rich has considered your proposal, he has personally been out to examine the site, and he has agreed to your proposal with a few caveats,” the runner announced.

“And those are?” Berry asked, her mood now greatly improving.

“Mister Rich wants some assurance that Buckminster Bitters will keep teaching. Mister Rich and his investors are very impressed with Mister Bitters recent activities in keeping a foal from harm, and want somepony with that kind of dedication heading the school. Mister Rich has already sent proposals to the Crown. Mister Rich also wants access to top students, the cream of the crop so to speak, for upcoming projects involving community improvement and development of Ponyville. Mister Rich has a vision to make Ponyville a place of learning and education for all ponies, earning Ponyville a place on the map,” the runner answered, somewhat breathlessly.

“I’ll need to talk to Bucky of course, but I cannot imagine any reason why he would disagree to this proposal. I’ll be in touch with a reply soonish,” Berry responded, feeling a warm blossom of pride blooming in her barrel.

“I’ve never seen Mister Rich this tenacious about anything,” the runner said, panting slightly. “He barely sleeps now. He is working through the day and most the night. He’s become a very different pony as of late.”

“I think a number of ponies have been changed recently,” Berry replied, nodding her head in agreement.

“But when I say Mister Rich has changed, I mean Mister Rich has changed. He is no longer the pony who hired me. He’s going out of his way to be nice to other ponies. He’s raised my pay. He actually spends time with us now, getting to know us. He’s weird,” the runner confessed, looking around him as he spoke.

Berry nodded and laughed, thinking to herself about another pony who was changing slowly. And a certain grey mare, who was also going through profound changes.

Berry of course, knew that she was as constant and unchanging as the stones and the soil that she walked on.

“I have to be going!” the runner exclaimed, taking off at a run.

Berry resumed her walk and headed off to her place of business, with a mind for a new product name. “Farting Filly Ale.

 

 

Derpy sat in a warm patch of grass, watching her foals play. Sparkler was currently buried under Dinky and Piña’s assaults, pinned to the grass, laughing and promising revenge. Not too far away from Derpy sat Rising Star, who watched the action taking place with a subdued smile.

Lyra sat nearby, strumming a melody from her lyre, something that seemed sad and happy at the same time. Lyra was alone, Bon Bon was upstairs once again with Bucky.

Even with her reduced visual acuity, Derpy could not help but notice the glances being exchanged between Sparkler and Rising Star. Sparkler kept looking at the colt, and then immediately looking away when she saw him watching her.

The mother mare rose, took a few steps, and then sat down beside Rising Star, wrapping a wing around him and leaning in close. “You really like her, don’t you?” the pegasus mare asked.

“Very much so,” Rising Star admitted.

“I am about to talk to you as her mother,” Derpy warned. “And I am not one for lots of words.”

Rising Star gulped and he felt the wing around him squeeze tighter.

“If you treat her well, I will treat you as family. You will be loved and accepted and the flock will call you its own,” Derpy said in a soft whisper. “But if you make her cry, if you break her heart, or if you take from her her dream of going to university, I will drop you from the stratosphere and then follow you down so I can lecture you about how to treat a filly before you die. That’s about forty miles straight up. We’ll have time for me to have my say.”

Rising Star nodded, his eyes as wide as dinner plates, his ears hanging down alongside his face. His heart thudded as Derpy gently kissed him on the cheek, and gave him one final squeeze with her wing.

And then, she let go and scooted away, giving Rising Star some much needed breathing space. As Rising Star sat there, trying to compose himself, he thought about the name of his next poem. ”Stratospheric Plunge” seemed really edgy and deep. Just like the crater he would make if he upset the mother pegasus. And then there was the unicorn upstairs, who no doubt would be a bit peeved if the pegasus became upset. Rising Star shuddered. Ponyville just had a recent display of a type three really letting go, and there was no way that Rising Star wanted that kind of fury turned on him. Peeved type threes were bad news. Rising Star wondered what he was getting himself into.

Derpy studied the thoughtful looking unicorn, watching him carefully. She doubted she would ever have to drop him from the stratosphere. Rising Star seemed like a good sort.

Dinky’s father had also seemed like a good sort as well Derpy recalled.

 

 

Celestia carefully considered her ponies. Most were good, some were very good, and a small minority were not quite as good as they could be. She had hope in the good ones, placed her faith in the very good ones, and worked to help the ones who were not living up to their potential. Celestia had a hard time believing there were truly bad ponies. There were just ponies who needed a little help to see their potential and get better. But she knew that she couldn’t save them all.

It had been a relief to tell Twilight more of the whole truth, but she had not revealed all of the truth. There were still parts that even Celestia did not know, and some things Celestia still kept to herself.

Thankfully, the worst was over and Equestria now saw peace. All of the horrible strife that had nearly torn the country apart from within was now ever, hopefully gone forever, wars between houses were now history lessons of the past.

Celestia wondered briefly about why so many of her students found themselves in Ponyville. Coincidence? Sheer luck? She did not know, but it intrigued her. Lyra had appeared there after vanishing, broken and unwell. Buckminster had moved there after graduation. Trixie Lulamoon had been there a few times and had caused some mischief. There were many others, but it was the problematic unicorns that Celestia had the most concern over. Like Trixie.

Trixie was a unicorn in need of help, and Celestia hoped that somepony would help her. Trixie needed to settle in Ponyville.

Even Discord, the Herald of Chaos, had been reformed in Ponyville.

Celestia felt anxious, hoping that the first reports from Lyra and Bon Bon would arrive soon, agents of observation to help her assess the herd status that seemed to be rapidly forming.

Celestia felt an odd mix of apprehension and hope. As each day passed, she became a little more open minded about the restoration of herd marriage. Cadance would arrive soon, and Celestia was eager for her arrival. There was a lot to talk about with Cadance.

 

 

“I still don’t know why I am telling you these things,” Bucky said, his head on a pile of pillows, his eyes half closed.

Bon Bon gently reached over and stroked his ribs with a hoof. “Because you want to get better dear,” she explained.

As she touched him, the glands in her frogs released a chemical that reacted with Bucky’s skin, causing him to release a flood of chemicals in his brain that made him feel better, a careful blend of dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, a flood of endorphins, and finally, what can only be scientifically measured as a bucketful of prolactin, which counteracts the sexual stimulation caused by dopamine, and leaves behind the powerful feeling of euphoria usually felt after sexual intercourse. With every touch, Bon Bon was drugging Bucky into a stronger and greater state of trust and relaxation, flooding his brain with bonding chemicals that made him trust her, and calming his anxiety. Bon Bon did not know that she was at the evolutionary peak of what her kind was capable of. She did not know that she was a super producer, a walking pharmaceutical factory that took the form of a pony. An earth pony. Others of her kind also had this effect, but it was greatly reduced.

Bon Bon had no idea that Lyra was addicted to her and could not function without regular re-applications of chemicals that Lyra needed to balance out, be happy, and survive. Bon Bon had no idea that the candies that she so carefully created, many mixed with her own hooves were also agents of powerful altered states that calmed and soothed so many of the ponies all around her, in much the same way that Berry Punch had accidentally dosed everypony around her with hoof pressed dumpling dough. Berry Punch was also a powerful producer, though not at Bon Bon’s level of output. Pinkie Pie, another super producer, was also responsible for keeping most of Ponyville on even keel after leaving behind traces of various triggering chemicals in her many treats and goodies. Aloe and Lotus, the ponies who owned the spa, were also powerful producers who did their part to keep the town happy.

The trace amounts were enough to help stabilise mood, but direct contact was enough to powerfully affect even the most muddled ponies, like Bucky or Lyra, or any number of other troubled minds.

The other two tribes had no idea that they owed their survival to the earth ponies, or what the earth ponies did for them through contact with their food and day to day gentle touching.

“I do want to get better,” Bucky agreed, feeling strangely calm.

“So then, back to the subject at hoof, what is it that you find attractive about those two mares? You need to tell them someday, you might as well practice with me,” Bon Bon said in soothing tones.

“This is very embarrassing,” Bucky admitted, “I’m supposed to be above noticing physical details.”

“Pish posh,” Bon Bon retorted. “You’re a stallion. You are allowed to have needs. It isn’t that embarrassing.” As she spoke, Bon Bon, being the gentle sort she was, gave him a reassuring rub.

“With Derpy, it is everything. She’s like a stormcloud. She’s beautiful to look at. Her wings. I like her wings. Her grey with a faint hint of blue colour. And I love the colour of her mane. Or the way her nostrils flare when she’s excited. The way her muscles move under her well-toned pelt. And I love her eyes. I don’t care what other ponies think,” Bucky confessed, his tone almost drowsy. “And the way her hips sway when she walks… Part of me just wants to bury myself in her and make foals,” Bucky said, closing his eyes and cringing, not believing the words that had just come out of his mouth. He could not believe he was admitting such a base bestial need.

“Good, good,” Bon Bon said, blushing only slightly. “What about Berry?”

“I don’t know that I find Berry all that physically attractive,” Bucky admitted.

“Surely you must find something that is appealing about her body,” Bon Bon said incredulously.

“Oh, she’s pretty, no doubt, but she is my nemesis. My foil. She is my mental counter. I hate to admit it, but I think Berry might be smarter than I am. That bothers me. Frustrates me. And I think it turns me on,” Bucky said, completely in awe that these words were coming out of his mouth. “I want to slip her the pony making bone for very different reasons…” Bucky whimpered when he heard the words escaping his lips and immediately wanted to die.

Bon Bon blushed, turning a wonderful shade of mauve. “Oh my, pony making bone, I haven’t heard that one before. So… you want to, uh, have you way with Berry to establish some dominance perhaps? Tame the wild Shetland Isles pony?”

“Maybe,” Bucky admitted. “Maybe I just want to reduce us both to the levels of dumb beasts where we have dirty animal rutting and there is no talking, no intellectual discourse, and I am finally on even hoofing with her.” Bucky gasped as he spoke, his own honesty completely flummoxing him.

Bon Bon burst into laughter and gave Bucky a gentle prod. “Good luck with that, Berry will always have something to say, especially if she has a pony making bone being rammed into her plot.”

 

Author's Note:

Whew, earth ponies. Finally. I was able to write out the big fat reveal. So satisfying. I've been hinting at this one for a long, long time folks. Recently, the hints became a big flashing beacon. And now, direct confirmation.

Earth pony doctors suddenly make a lot of sense and so does Apple Blooms interest in potions.

Oh, and pony making bone. I don't know where that came from, but I had to say it into my voice recorder one day so I wouldn't forget it. I knew it was a "Buckyism" the moment I thought about it.

 
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