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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Carefully lifting up a cup of perfectly made tea, Violet Velvet took a sip as she also adjusted her reading glasses with her magic. Sighing contentedly, she gave Bucky a little smile and then set down her teacup carefully upon a saucer. “We can open the school tomorrow. Everything is in place and ready to go, but Princess Celestia and Princess Luna are still away. If you want to delay, we can.”

Inhaling the steam from his own tea, Bucky blinked drowsily. “No. We open the school as soon as possible. Tomorrow.”

“I will send word to Canterlot then. There is a delegation there from overseas, a pack of diamond dogs. The exchange students are ready to go. There is a teacher, a diamond dog from the old world country, Germaney. His name is Neon Blitz. He will be the caretaker for our puppy students. Big dog… strong silent type. Former soldier, likes to make decorative lamps. He comes highly recommended by the Supreme Chancellour of Germaney, and comes with a full compliment of commendations for bravery, loyalty, and generally being a hard ass when it comes time to be a good shepherd,” Violet Velvet responded.

“I like him already,” Bucky said after he swallowed his sip of tea.

“The zebra students haven’t arrived yet, but are on the way. Fancy is sending over a few students, an earth pony, a pegasus, and a unicorn. In my opinion, it will be good to open the school and then absorb students a few at a time rather than a huge crowd all at once,” Violet remarked as she lifted up her teacup once more.

“Semillon has graciously offered to help the school cafeteria plan menus and organise food preparation,” Bucky said as he watched Violet drink her tea.

Swallowing and looking a little disgusted, Violet turned her glare upon Bucky. “Which reminds me… are you really going to serve bugs in the cafeteria?”

“We need the protein. We have diamond dogs and griffons and students of all kinds. We should introduce new foods to them while they are young. Eating insects is surprisingly healthy for ponies. Everypony and everybirdy in my family eats them now… we use mealworm flour in almost everything that needs flour… including that tea cake you just ate,” Bucky answered.

Setting down her tea, Violet’s eyes narrowed as she stared at Bucky. “Words cannot express my loathing for you right now.”

Chortling, Bucky grinned. “There are no words to express how little I care.”

Violet smiled, her eyes opening and her features becoming friendlier. “And this is why I like you. I’m glad I took this job.”

“How is the city council?” Bucky inquired as his ears perked forward.

“Well, they were well behaved for all of one meeting, but today, there was some division. Some were very cooperative, others began to squabble amongst themselves,” Violet replied. The lavender mare’s ears leaned back against her curly silver mane. “Unemployment is a major concern right now. Ponyville’s population has exploded. More jobs are needed.”

“The school will provide more jobs in time, but not enough,” Bucky responded. Scowling for a moment, he blinked in annoyance and then took a sip of tea.

“This might help, but Twilight Sparkle won’t like it,” Violet Velvet said as she slid a folder over to Bucky. “This just arrived from Canterlot today by Pony Express.”

“What’s this?” Bucky asked as he lifted the folder. He opened it up and began reading. His eye moving silently over the text, Bucky shook his head. “Why would Twilight Sparkle object to this?”

Violet lifted her hoof and made an annoyed waving gesture. “Twilight Sparkle is opposed to any sort of large industrial buildings in Ponyville. No giant factories, no massive bland brick buildings, she is determined to keep Ponyville’s rural charm.”

“But we could use this mail sorting facility. This is a major hub, a place where packages and letters are sorted. And a postal airship dock… the dock alone will offer dozens of jobs. Maintenance, cargo management, pilots… plus the hostel for pegasus couriers to sleep and get rest… they’ll need maids to mind the beds and clean the rooms. Not to mention all the ponies needed to work sorting the mail,” said Bucky in a frustrated tone of voice.

“Have you ever seen how ugly these buildings are? Twilight Sparkle does have a point, as much as it pains me to admit it. She’s never going to give in on this one,” Violet replied while making a dismissive gesture with her hoof.

“Then we make the buildings look better. We build something that looks like it belongs in Ponyville. Our family brewery is almost ten thousand square feet and it doesn’t look out of place in town,” Bucky argued, his frustration rising.

Clearing her throat, Violet gave Bucky an annoyed look. “You did not read the info sheet. The first building is about thirty thousand square feet, the secondary building is nearly twenty thousand square feet, the dock hub and the hostel are to be determined.”

Pulling his lip back into a snarl, Bucky drummed his talons upon the table in annoyance. “Twilight is just going to have to accept a little modernisation. We have a hydroelectric dam here in Ponyville for crying out loud. That’s a giant expanse of grey cement!”

“Twilight Sparkle will never allow it,” Violet stated.

“Bugger it all,” Bucky grumbled.

 

 

Feeling very confused, Rainbow Dash looked around at the foals napping upon the floor. The story was not finished. The curious mouse had not yet explored the house, finding such mundane and sundry items such as an apple, a ball, some cheese, and a desk.

Rainbow Dash did not know what a quince log was, but the mouse had found one.

“They fell asleep,” Rainbow Dash whispered.

“Foals do that,” Derpy responded in a soft voice.

“But they did not finish the book,” Rainbow Dash replied, still whispering.

“I’m surprised they made it to quince log. Usually they doze off by inkwell,” Derpy said in return as she carefully covered the foals with a blanket.

“They never finish the book?” Rainbow Dash questioned.

“Naw, I don’t even know how that book ends,” Derpy answered as she turned to look at Rainbow Dash.

Flipping through the book, Rainbow Dash blinked as she stared at the last page. “What the stuffing is a zoetrope?”

Derpy shrugged.

“This house has some weird stuff. How would a mouse know what this stuff is?” Rainbow Dash questioned.

“It’s a book for foals… written for fun,” Derpy replied as she shook her head at Rainbow Dash. “Don’t overthink it.”

 

 

“...so every time Cheese Sandwich gets it stuck, they have to have a gang bang in the kitchen,” Twist explained, snorting softly from her nasal lisp.

“Huh… weird,” Piña Colada replied as she cut out a picture from the newspaper for her scrapbook. She peered over at Dinky and watched as Dinky carefully glued popsicle sticks into the general shape of a birdhouse.

Sniggering softly, Yew Wood bit down on her lip as she tried to show Diamond Tiara how to knit so the earth pony filly would have an effective means of stress relief. It was difficult to even hold her needles in her wings.

“My magic feels funny,” Dinky remarked as she tried to steady her efforts. “Too powerful. Takes so little thought to do anything. Everything is all wonky.”

“Sorry,” Glass Slipper said in a subdued voice.

Shaking her head, Dinky looked up from her birdhouse and looked at Glass Slipper. “Don’t be sorry… I like having to work harder and test myself.”

“Oh,” Glass Slipper replied, looking just a tiny bit confused as she sat there watching Dinky build a birdhouse out of popsicle sticks. “You sound like Rainbow Dash.”

“You want a challenge, try knitting with hooves,” Diamond Tiara grumbled. “And a moody lunar pegasus crammed into your chair with you,” she added.

Turning her head to look at Diamond Tiara, Piña grinned. “You know you like it.”

“Aw, come on, leave poor Sentinel alone. Something is bothering him,” Tourmaline protested as she looked up from her drawing.

“We all know that,” Diamond Tiara muttered. “But he won’t say.”

Saying nothing else, and not wishing to reveal herself, Tourmaline fell silent.

Setting down her knitting needles and her yarn, Diamond Tiara carefully turned around sideways and pulled Sentinel into a hug. Much to her surprise, he did not resist, but suddenly wrapped his forelegs around her and squeezed back.

“Aw, you two are so adorable,” Yew remarked as she saw the two foals cuddling together in the chair. She felt her heart warm and thought of Lugus, not long after, she felt other things begin to warm.

 

 

Feeling Berry Punch’s hooves upon her belly, Thistle let out a low moan as the earth pony rubbed some kind of oil into her pelt. She could feel Berry’s hooves moving in gentle little circles, working the oil in, and she could smell something that was almost spicy.

“It won’t be long now Thistle,” Berry Punch said as she slid her hooves to a new area.

“Two more months after Nightmare Night… it is going to feel like forever,” Thistle grumbled in reply, her face contorting into a sulky pout. “Berry… I’ve changed my mind. I think… I think after Bell Heather is born… I think I’m going to wait a while before getting pregnant again. I know there is a lot of pressure to make new kelpies, but this is torture.”

Grunting with effort, Berry nodded as she rubbed the medicated oil into Thistle’s skin, which was in danger of getting cracks and splits from being overstretched, too tight, and dried out from the strain. “The good news is, the doctor doesn’t think the foal is going to grow much more. She’s just in there getting finished for a while.”

“I really hope that’s true,” Thistle whined. “I can’t take this.”

“There is always the lake,” Berry Punch suggested.

“But I can’t be with all of you in the lake… I get lonely,” Thistle replied as her eyes began to moisten. “I’m miserable no matter where I am.”

Squeezing the tube in her folded fetlock, Berry Punch squirted more medicated oil on Thistle’s belly and then set the tube down on the bedside table. She began to rub again, moving her hooves in careful little circles, trying to bring Thistle some small means of comfort.

“Thistle honey… when you have this foal… my suggestion is to wait about a year or two before you even think of having another. Live a little. Spend time running around town looking in shop windows and meeting a few new friends. Really though. Make friends. That way, when you're pregnant again, you’ll have a whole army of ponies to keep you company,” Berry Punch recommended as she slathered down the crying kelpie in oil.

 

 

“Do you really expect me to take this seriously?” Flash Sentry asked as he looked at the mare with too much mascara on her eyelashes. “Your name again ma’am?”

“My name is Valencia Orange and yes, I expect for you to take this seriously,” the mare responded as she narrowed her eyes and peered at Flash Sentry. “Look, I realise this proposal is a little unorthodox, but this is going to keep happening if you like it or not. Mares and stallions both are having to deal with nastier and nastier pimps and rivalry and territory are becoming a problem. You are going to see more crime. Pretty soon you are going to see a murder I think because I can think of two pimps that are becoming particularly nasty and territorial. A young mare just got her face cut because one pimp wanted to mess up the merchandise of the other. Surely you can see where this is going.”

“I’m listening,” Flash Sentry said in a low serious voice.

“We wish to form a union, become sanctioned by the city, be rid of pimps, secure a large building, and make a legalised brothel. We’re selling something that ponies are buying. We’re willing to pay taxes. But we want protection and we want legitimacy. This will reduce some of the violent crime and misery. We just want to make a living. Some of us enjoy this work. For others, we need the bits. We don’t want to scuffle with the police and we’re tired of others exploiting us. You can’t stop what is going on, your best bet is to make peace with it and allow the city to profit from it,” Valencia Orange said, hoping to convince Flash Sentry with a well reasoned argument.

“I find myself in agreement with what you are saying. Tell me Valencia Orange, you seem so well spoken… what did you do before you came to Ponyville?” Flash Sentry questioned.

“I worked for a public relations firm in Manehatten. We represented corporations and made the questionable things they did sound appealing to the public,” Valencia Orange answered with blunt honesty.

“I see… well, that’s interesting. Tell me, are you willing to submit to health and safety inspections? Monthly checks for the Drip?” Flash Sentry responded.

“Look, Captain Flash Sentry… we are willing to do whatever it takes to become a legitimate business,” Valencia Orange replied. “We want to be marketable. And being able to tell our customers that we’re a clean lay only helps our business. We will be very discreet, have a calm clean establishment, and we promise not to damage Ponyville’s respectable veneer.”

Nodding, Flash Sentry offered a polite smile. “I will see what I can do to help you.”

 

 

 

 

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