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


607. 607

“That was strange.” Bucky looked down at the three charred corpses, blinked, and then looked over at Harper. Static danced along the stubby length of her horn and her mane was frizzier than ever. Beside her, Sukari was crackling with static and her mane stood on end.

“Bucky… they looked… wrong.” Derpy’s voice was frightened, full of panic.

“The house is well warded… I don’t understand how they got in. But they seem to be gone now. And all of you complained that Lyra and I teaching Harper how to focus her magic at such a young age was a bad idea.”

Derpy blinked. “Now is not the time for ‘I told you so’ or being smug.”

His horn glowing, Bucky paced around the room. “I don’t sense anything. I think we can calm down now and once our frazzled nerves are settled, we can all laugh about Harper’s mane and how silly she looks.”

Derpy nickered and then made an equine bellow deep within her barrel. “I wish Berry and Thistle were here. I’d feel better.”

“They’re probably in Ponyville with Bon Bon and Lyra. Thistle has been dying to get out and do stuff… now that she is no longer so fat that she has to be shoved through doors, she’s—”

There was a flutter of wings and Bucky was beset with wing slaps. “She was beautiful! Don’t call her fat!” Derpy gave Bucky a few more halfhearted wing slaps and then she stopped. She took a deep shuddering breath and her ears drooped down to the sides of her face.

“Do you feel better?” Bucky asked.

“No!” Derpy turned away from her husband. “I’m sorry. I’m stressed.”

“I bet Harper is hungry. She’ll probably eat every scrap of her dinner tonight.” Bucky smiled at at his frizzy maned daughter that was still sparking and arcing. “I just realised… I’m never going to have to worry about Harper around little colts… my little filly can take care of herself.”

Bucky’s horn flared, a bright flash, and the charred corpses vanished. The floor, blackened, was now clean and showed no signs of violence. He went around the room once more and looked for holes in the walls or the floor. There was nothing to be found.

As Bucky continued to search, to find some logical reason for this intrusion, he began to feel peculiar. His horn tingled, a strange new sensation, and a shivering sensation of cold spiked through the root of his horn and into his brain.

Opening his mouth to say something, to offer warning that something was wrong, Bucky toppled down to the floor with a thump.



Peeling back one of Bucky’s eyelids, Sunset Shimmer looked into Bucky’s Taint filled eye. The slitted pupil was the tiniest pinprick. She let go and allowed the eye to close. She tried tickling one of his frogs, then another, no response. She lowered her head and placed her ear to Bucky’s barrel. His heart was strong and sounded regular.

“I’m stumped. We should contact Luna.” Sunset Shimmer eyed at the worried looking grey mare. “I can sense something… but I don’t know what it is.”

“This is bad,” Derpy said, her voice was raspy and somewhat husky.

“I don’t like this. This seems like more than mere coincidence. First the rats and now this. I’ll dispatch a golem to Luna right away.”



Loki, a harrier, had far more tolerance for carbohydrates, fruits, and sweets than would first appear. Setting down his fork, he rubbed his belly, his fourth apple brown betty sitting in his gut like lead.

“Ye still look scrawny,” Granny Smith said, squinting at Loki.


“I need to do my research,” Apple Bloom said, pushing her plate away.

Every equine ear at the table perked when a squeak was heard. Every head turned, including one sharp eared griffon. There was a scratching sound.

Loki, his head twisting sideways, flexed his talons and let out a hiss. “Vermin…

Dropping from his chair, Loki prowled towards the stove with his tail stiff and straight up into the air like a flag, his claws tapping and scratching on the wooden floor.

“I think we’re about to see us a cat versus rat fight,” Granny Smith said, leaning over in her chair. “I got my bits on the cat… he looks mean.”


Something dark streaked forward, moving with incredible speed. Loki was faster. With one smooth fluid motion, he drew his dagger from the belt around his middle and skewered what had lunged at him. Sitting down, Loki held the wiggling rat up to examine it, looking every bit like a cat playing with its food.

The rat, almost skeletal, was black. It had glowing red eyes. Fur had fallen away from parts of it, leaving behind diseased looking bare patches. Its teeth were long and yellow. It squealed and squeaked as it writhed on Loki’s blade. Flecks of foam dribbled from its mouth.

“Diseased vermin,” Loki said, his voice a low feline growl. “I despise vermin.”

“That ain’t natural,” Big Mac said in a deep voice.

With a gasp, the rat died. Loki continued to stare at it.

More squeaks could be heard in the kitchen. Scratching and skittering could be heard under the stove, where it was dark. Apple Bloom let out a terrified scream and jumped up onto the kitchen table. Big Mac was on his hooves in a second, and Cheerilee was at his side. Granny Smith, sitting in her chair, sat still, watched, and waited.

Loki, flinging the rat from his blade, rose up into a bipedal stance, standing with effortless ease on his hind legs, and a stiletto appeared in his left talons. He waved the dagger in his right talons at the stove. In his black doublet and his armor, he was a roguish looking figure as he stood there, waiting for the enemy to come.

“Come out little vermin… we can dance.” There was no fancy blade twirling, no flashy swashbuckling, no display of bravado. Loki was still, almost unmoving, conserving his energy, balanced on his hind paws.

It was the stance of a well practiced killer.



“Ach! Crivens!”

As the sun was setting, the house was alive with the sounds of vermin. It sounded as though they were in the walls, under the sofas, everywhere there was darkness or where a shadow was cast.

“To the tower!” Sunset Shimmer commanded, taking control. “The tower will be easier to defend!” She lifted Bucky and began to move. Reaching out with her mind, she lifted up everything most valuable to Bucky, snatching every single foal at once. Harper, Cadance, Bell Heather, and Sukari were all lifted.

Peekaboo clung to her mother’s back, her eyes wide with terror.

Boadicea helped Scootaloo climb onto her back and the griffoness carried the injured pegasus.

Moving as a group, the herd of ponies and griffons made ready to make a strategic retreat from the house.

“We are besieged by vermin!” Magpie screamed.

Belisama, her shawl around her neck, and Bandua tucked inside, lept from the porch down into the snow. On her back was her crossbow and her sabre. She heard screams coming from the school and the dormitory towers. Her heart lept up into her beak.

“Raptors! KILL!”

Ripple was overhead, flying in formation with her Raptors. The went streaking past, heading towards the source of bedlam and anarchy.

Spreading his wings, Sentinel took the air, and he glanced down at Sunset Shimmer. “Protect my little sisters,” he commanded as he followed after Ripple. “I have to go look after my big sister.”

“Oh feck me, the little blighters are everywhere,” Barley said as his horn flared. Several rats closing in on the herd caught fire. “Come and get some you little gobshites!”

Ahead, there was a massive plume of fire and Rising Star could be heard bellowing.

Dinky began firing off telekinetic bolts, drilling holes through rats as she took careful aim.

“Evacuate the towers! Get the students gathered into the school! Get them into dining area where we can watch them!”

“Change of plans!” Sunset Shimmer cried. “Daylight Shadow has a good idea. We need to face this together! Bucky would want us defending his students, not keeping ourselves safe in his tower!”

“WHAT VERMIN DARES TO CHALLENGE THE MAGICAL MIGHT OF THE GREAT AND POWERFUL TRIXIE, NOBLE STEED OF BARTLEBY THE PALADIN!” A blue unicorn went galloping past, a toucan beaked griffon and an earth pony foal upon her back.

Bartleby was holding the foal in his forelegs as he clung to Trixie’s mane. The foal, crying, had blood streaming from her foreleg.

As Trixie went streaking past, Sunset Shimmer’s heart filled with pride.



Hovering, Sentinel heard the distant sounds of bells over the hullabaloo all around him. He realised that Ponyville was under attack. It wasn’t enough to defend the school and the farm. There was more at stake than just his immediate family or his father’s interests.

He watched as the griffons, all of them, took up arms in defense of the school.

Gritting his teeth, Sentinel made a heart wrenching decision.

“Griffons!” Sentinel barked in a loud voice that cut through the chaos. “I need about fifty of you to come with me! I’ll need a few Raptors too! Ponyville calls for aid and we shall answer!”

Little feathered heads lifted.

His wings flapping, Sentinel watched as some of the defenders rose. Ripple, also hovering, raised a hoof in salute.

“On the wings of alicorns, Sentinel,” Ripple said.

“Stay safe, sister,” Sentinel replied. He raised a hoof and waved.

A flock of griffons, Sentinel was not certain how many, rose into the air around him. Some had bows, others crossbows, some had spears, daggers, swords, all manner of merciless metal glittered in the sun’s final dying light.

“Follow me!” Sentinel commanded as he took off for Ponyville.



Bloodied, Loki stood on his hind legs, his girth heaving, his blades now stained scarlet. Beside him, Big Mac stood, his hooves covered in gore. Granny Smith was sitting on the kitchen table with Apple Bloom, and the crotchety old mare was armed with a heavy black cast iron skillet.

Cheerilee stood waiting by the table, ready to snatch up Apple Bloom and run at a moment’s notice.

Dozens of dead rats were strewn around the kitchen. Blood pooled on the floor. A few bodies still writhed and twitched. When one squeaked, Big Mac stomped down upon it, making certain it was dead.

“Turn on all the lights,” Loki commanded. “Cheerilee… do it… now. We need to make this room as bright as possible. The rats are coming out of the shadows.”

Cheerilee, quick on her hooves, bounded to the light switch and flicked all of them upwards. The kitchen was now well lit. She bounced over the sink, hit another switch, and more light appeared over the sink, the counters, and the stove.

“Should we escape? Go somewhere?” Cheerilee asked.

“It is dark outside… and getting darker. Going outside will be our deaths,” Loki replied.

“Think we can make it through the night? When daylight comes, will it be safe to leave and go get help?” Cheerilee looked at Apple Bloom. “I could get Apple Bloom to safety somewhere… I can run pretty fast.”

“You can’t run at the speed of dark.” Loki cocked his head as he listened to the sounds of squeaking.

“We Apples stick together.” Big Mac lowered his head and peered at the red eyes blinking beneath the stove.

“Even if one of us happens to be a griffon,” Granny Smith said as she lifted her frying pan.



“Today, we fight like dogs!” Neon Blitz stood in the doorway, his eyes watching for signs of danger. Students were being hustled into the school’s cafeteria. The lights were blazing and magical globes of light began to appear, blinking into existence.

There was a squeak, a snarl, and a wet sounding thud.

A diamond dog pup stood and looked proud.

“Keep the rats away from Buckminster at all costs!” Doctor Mawu said. “There is something about them… some spirit of malice… they wish to wake the darkness within him! This is all a nightmare to him!”

“So Master is dreaming all of this?” Sunset Shimmer asked.

The bocor nodded.

Sunset Shimmer lifted Bucky back into the air and wrapped him in a bubble of golden light, making it so no shadow or darkness touched his body. She understood the danger here… in a nightmare, in a dream, the alicorn within Bucky might wake up if threatened.

Or if what he loved was threatened.

Bucky kicked out and whimpered in his sleep.

“Are the students in?”

“The towers are cleared, we need to do a headcount. Some of the older students are out fighting on the outer perimeter. There are thousands of rats outside.”

“There are rats in the school too… everywhere it is dark, the rats appear.”

“Get this room as well lit as possible. Get lights everywhere. Under tables, in dark corners, everywhere a shadow is cast I want light shining!”

“Yes sir, I will do so, Daylight Shadow.”

“I’m going outside,” Scorch said, heading towards the door.

“No!” Sunset Shimmer stomped her hoof. “We need you in here… in case something goes wrong. We have to trust our defenders to do their job and we need you right here in reserve as part of our fall back plan, whatever that might be.”

Scorch shifted form into a massive griffon and sat down. “Very well.”

A filly, huddled under a blanket, tossed her blanket aside with a shriek. A rat scurried out from beneath it. The rat didn’t get very far, another student, an earth pony colt, stomped his hoof down upon the rat’s skull.

“Darkness lurks under blankets! Be warned!” Daylight Shadow cried.

A massive explosion could be heard outside.

“What was that!” Derpy asked.

“Probably Rising Star using some of Bucky’s glass orbs,” Scorch replied.

“Belisama… play us some music… bring some calm to these students,” an old grizzled griffon said as he sat down beside a crying filly and began to pat her upon the back.






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