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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“Daddy?” Loch Skimmer walked into the farmhouse library, dragging her hooves. She watched Bucky go from panic as well as alarm and then back to measured calm in the blink of an eye. “Daddy, I’m in trouble.”

“Looks that way. Did Dinky prank you?” Bucky asked.

Shaking her head, Loch Skimmer looked down at the floor.

Violet, sitting at the table, stared at Loch Skimmer with curious eyes.

Loch Skimmer drew in a deep breath and tried to summon the courage to tell Bucky what needed to be said. She failed. Instead, she started crying. She felt the warm tingle of magic around her, gravity relaxed, and then she felt herself carried through the air. As she was plopped on a sofa, she saw Bucky climbing up beside her.

Sobbing, she wrapped her forelegs and her wings around him, not even thinking about the flames. She felt a fetlock and a hoof stroking her neck and then she was pulled close.

“Loch, tell me, what’s wrong?” Bucky asked, unconcerned about being hugged by a flaming pegasus.

“Daddy, something went wrong… we are careful... I promise... we were always so careful and I know I kind of wanted a foal for a while but then I changed my mind and we always made certain to use the spell and I just don’t know what went wrong…”

Loch Skimmer felt and heard Bucky inhale.

“I just took a pregnancy test… and it was positive.”

“Oh that’s not so terrible,” Bucky said.

“But this could hurt Rising Star’s public image.” Loch Skimmer clung ever tighter to Bucky and sniffled into his mane.

“It might. So what if it does.” Bucky patted Loch Skimmer on the back.

“This is gonna mess up my life… I had plans… things I wanted to do.”

“You can still do them. Do you think for one second that we won’t help you? You’re going to stay in school and you’re still going to do everything you had planned. We’ll help you. Stop crying and we’ll sort this out somehow. You should be happy.”

Loch Skimmer sneezed into Bucky’s neck. Flames shot out of her nostrils, but did not ignite Bucky. Closing her eyes, she hung on to Bucky and continued to cry.

“Well, if you sneeze fire, I’d hate to see what comes out of the other end…”

There was no laugh from Loch Skimmer and Bucky knew that he was in trouble. He looked up towards Violet and made a gesture. The unicorn mare slipped from her chair and trotted from the room.

Hearing the sound of a foal crying, Derpy came into the farmhouse library and froze. On the sofa there was a flaming pegasus and a frost covered unicorn. Her hips ached from the short walk, and she stood there, not quite sure what to do. Motherhood instinct won out. She hobbled forwards for the sofa, let out a grunt of pain as she climbed up, sat down next to Loch Skimmer, and wrapped her forelegs around the wailing filly.

With a poof, Derpy ignited. She felt alarmed for a moment when she saw the flames rising off of her wings, but there was no pain and the sofa did not seem to be burning, so she paid it no attention. Crying foals were more important than being on fire.

“You’re going to be a grandmother,” Loch Skimmer said to Derpy.

“That’s happy news,” Derpy said, squeezing Loch Skimmer. “Everything will be okay… stop crying.”

“Violet will return with some tea. Let’s get you cleaned up, we’ll have some tea, and we’ll sort this out.” Bucky planted a kiss on top of Loch Skimmer’s head, on her straw coloured mane, right between her ears.

 

 

“We were careful,” Rising Star said, shaking his head. He sat on the floor near the sofa where Loch Skimmer sat.

Ripple reached over, hugged her sister, burst into flames, let go, watched the flames die, and hugged her sister again, only to watch herself reignite. “Loch, please, stop crying.”

Sparkler, sitting on the other side of Loch Skimmer, patted the sniffling pegasus on the back. “This isn’t so bad. I suppose a few things will need to change with how we are. Birth control pills or condoms might be a good idea. I guess relying entirely on magic was foolish.”

“Doctor Mawu said it is because of all the earth ponies around… they boost fertility,” Loch Skimmer said, sniffling and wiping her nose with her fetlock. She looked around the room, her eyes lingering on Derpy and Bucky, who sat together. “How am I going to stay in school and care for a foal?”

“You’ll have to care for it when you're not in school or not working.” Sparkler wrapped her foreleg over Loch Skimmer’s withers and parts of her that touched Loch Skimmer turned to stone.

“What about nursing?” Loch Skimmer asked.

“There are no shortages of mares in this house with lots of milk,” Bucky said, observing how Loch Skimmer awoke various elemental effects in the ponies around her. Sparkler got stony, Ripple caught on fire, Derpy caught on fire, and he had become covered in frost.

Bittersweet, sitting on the sofa beside Ripple, leaned over and took both Loch Skimmer and Ripple into her forelegs. She squeezed them both. The donkey’s ears burst into flames.

“I bet it was Hearth’s Warming… we had that threesome,” Loch Skimmer said, no longer caring about embarrassing details. “I got drunk enough to be bisexual without hangups. I bet one of you botched the spell.”

“Now now, no need to place blame,” Derpy said.

“She’s right though… we might have made a mistake.” Rising Star’s ears drooped. He lifted up his teacup and took a sip. Closing his eyes, he savoured the flavour of peppermint and sighed.

“I’m excited. I get to be a super protective parent.” Ripple cracked her fetlocks, a terrifying sound coming from the violence prone filly, and her eyes narrowed. “I’m going to be the meanest, most fierce aunt that has ever lived.” She blinked. “I will be an aunt right? I mean, I am Loch’s sister, and this is her foal, but I will also be one of the foal’s mothers… this is confusing... It’s easier to just beat things to death.”

Sparkler rolled her eyes. “Brute.”

“Snob.” Ripple lifted her head high.

Ponies,” Bittersweet signed with her flaming ears.

“I’m not ready to be a mom… it’s a lot of work… and I saw what Thistle went through. I’m so scared… I’m not ready to grow up yet,” Loch Skimmer said and then collapsed into fresh sobs.

Derpy sighed. “Poor thing… I cried for a week straight when I found out I was pregnant.”

 

 

“Hi Larch.”

“Hi Piña.” The earth pony smiled an awkward smile. “Feeling better?”

“Yeah.” Piña nodded. “I was supposed to go home. I did. And I snuck out.”

“I guess you wanted to talk to me.” Larch began to kick some snow around with his front hoof and he looked everywhere but at Piña. “I’m guessing you saw some embarrassing stuff from in my head.”

The pink earth pony filly nodded.

Larch, a dark purple grey, turned a little darker as a blush spread through his body. His glasses, framed with faux wood, fogged over, making it difficult for him to see. He continued to make little hoofy kicks.

“I… I… I think I like you, Larch.” Piña turned away, unable to look at the colt any longer.

Larch nodded. “I think I like you too.”

“If you want me to keep liking you… and if you want that kiss, are you willing to earn it?” Piña asked, looking skywards.

“I s’pose so,” Larch replied. He sighed. “What do I gotta do?”

Clearing her throat, Piña tried to get rid of the lumps lurking down in her airpipe. “My daddy has given me very high standards. I know what I want from a colt. I think… anyway, you have to be a perfect gentlecolt and I’ll expect to be shown a nice time.”

“What do I do?” Larch asked.

“Figure it out,” Piña replied as she started to walk away. “I’m not gonna make this easy.”

“I don’t know where to begin!” Larch cried as he stood there looking at Piña.

“Start by asking my daddy for permission… any colt worthy of me liking them has to be brave,” Piña said over her shoulder.

Larch slumped and felt cold creeping fear crawling along his spine. “Oh noes…”

 

 

“Well girls, two out of three ain’t bad,” Apple Bloom said, looking at Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle. “How is your leg, Scoots?”

“Tomorrow I am cleared to train again. I don’t know if Loki will be up for it though.” Scootaloo’s ears perked forwards. “He’s different.”

“Loki died,” Apple Bloom said. She shook her head. “Big Mac is still recovering. He’s feeling better… the doctor said my brother should be dead. It makes a pony think.”

“Granny Smith feeling any better?” Sweetie Belle asked.

“Yeah… she’s back to being grumpy. She embroidered Loki’s name on a scrap of cloth and she is going to add it to the Apple family quilt. Loki Apple… the Apple family’s first griffon.”

The three fillies exchanged a three way glance. Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo exchanged a glance between themselves, and then both glanced at Apple Bloom. The pegasus and the unicorn both took a deep breath.

“You won’t stay blank forever,” Scootaloo said.

“Bound to happen sooner or later,” Sweetie Belle added.

Scootaloo nodded. “For both of us, it happened when we were off doing stuff… doing our own thing… so the next time you find yourself doing something alone… just check your backside.”

“Any more dreams with Princess Luna?” Sweetie Belle asked, changing the subject when she saw how dejected Apple Bloom looked.

Shrugging Apple Bloom made a noncommittal grunt. After a moment, she cleared her throat. “I’m behind on my work… I really need your help. I talked with Dinky today and she is busy researching. Headmaster Bitters is going to help us if we need it. We finally have the special bins that will act as cloud containment. There is so much work to do and I am behind. We don’t have a lot of time left, and I really need your help if I am going to pull this off, girls.”

“Cutie Mark Crusaders’ science project!”

 

 

With a thump, the massive minotaur dropped her steamer trunk that she had been carrying like a suitcase. She looked at the pony trotting up to meet her and he bowed her head.

“You must be Heifer Aestus. My name is Cheerilee. I’m so glad you could make it.”

“Call me Heif.”

“Heif? Heif Aestus?” Cheerilee craned her head to look up at the massive minotaur cow. She was wearing plated mail over a long chainmail coat that hung down to her knees. “Very well… welcome to the Founder’s Forge. We have your room ready if you are tired… and I am free to show you around.”

“I have walked from the Ponyville train station… it was a short walk and it was not taxing.”

Cheerilee looked at the steamer trunk. It had to be six feet long, three feet wide, and three feet deep. It was made of wood and brass. She looked up at the big armored minotaur. The Ponyville train station was several miles away.

“Well well well… my former student.”

Cheerilee turned and saw Scorch. At the moment, he was a diamond dog. She saw the big minotaur drop to one knee, bow and then Cheerilee watched as Scorch did the same.

“How are you Heif?” Scorch asked.

“I have been living in the utter east… with the dragons. I grew bored. Most of the great wyrms are hibernating and the little ones are… so very juvenile and annoying,” Heif replied.

“I am so glad you came. We need teachers.” Scorch shifted and became an earth pony.

The minotaur lurched forward with terrifying speed, her armor clanking, and she snatched up the flaming earth pony. She squeezed, her armor squealing and creaking, her chainmail clinking. She tossed Scorch into the air with effortless ease, snatched him, and then crushed him to her chest once more with all of the violence that only an eight foot tall minotaur could muster.

“No respect for my age or my dignity!” Scorch bellowed. “You’re worse than Celestia! I should put you over my knee and paddle you!”

The minotaur squeezed even harder and a jet of flame shot out of Scorch’s earth pony backside. The minotaur cow began laughing, a booming laugh that echoed through the school. Some students had stopped to stare at the giant while others were galloping away.

Cheerilee was terrified. She squeezed her hind legs together and felt the pressing need to go to the little fillies room.

“I would like to meet your new student, Rising Star. How does he measure up?” Heif set Scorch down upon the floor and looked down at him.

“Oh, I expect good things out of Rising Star… he just found out that one of his wives is pregnant…”

 

 

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