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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Things had not gone according to plan. Bucky had expected to be incapacitated, subdued, placed in chains, but not this. This had not been planned for. Laying on his side on a stone cold floor, Bucky tried to collect his thoughts.

His new stump ached and his many broken ribs made it difficult to breathe. Everything hurt. Everything ached. His left front shoulder was disconnected and he wasn’t able to move his talons at all.

But at least one thing had gone according to plan. He could feel the dark around him. His cell had some light, but it was dim. Blinking, trying to see out of his eye that was almost swollen shut, Bucky could see faint light shining through a slit in the door.

Concentrating, Bucky tried to slip into shadow and found that he could not. Knowing how important this was, he drew in a wet bubbly breath and focused. After failing again, Bucky closed his eyes and thought of home. He wasn’t able to slip his whole body into shadow, so he focused on his horn.

After several minutes of strain, there was a faint clunk on the floor as Bucky’s magical inhibitor fell off.

It had been a terrible gamble, but they had only taken steps to stop Bucky’s magic… and had done nothing to inhibit his shadow nature. The mirror travelers had made a mistake.

Not that it helped Bucky much at the moment. The plan had been to escape and wreak havoc inside of their own base of operations. Bucky was in no shape to do that now. He flopped and flailed upon the floor, a faint flame of anger kindling as he realised there would be no way to stand.

Being beaten almost to death and losing another leg had not been factored into the plan.

As shadow moved in front of the slit in the door and Bucky tensed. He had magic now. Terrible magic. His magical inhibitor was gone. He focused the feeble remains of his will and wondered if he had it in him to even cast a spell.

There was a scratch at the door, a thump, a rattle, the clunk of wood, and then the door opened. A black figure loomed in the doorway. It was not the figure that Bucky had hoped for, or was expecting.

“Bucky?”

“You were not part of the plan…” Bucky’s voice was a wet soupy gurgle.

“My king… what have they done to you?”

Bucky felt his head lifted and he saw two black eyes. Gentle talons cradled his head. “Boadicea… what are you doing here?”

“I stowed away on board The Scorned Mare.”

“Lugus… is… going… to… kill… you… and… I… will… not… be… able… to… stop… him…” Bucky gasped.

“My king… I can see your ribs sticking out… and you are missing a leg.”

There was another figure in the door. It stood there for a moment before entering.

“Fresh Meat, wrap his ribs with those bandages we brought. I’ll lift his body up so you can reach around. We need to stop the bleeding.”

“Sir, yes sir,” Boadicea replied.

“My king… this foolish cub stowed away upon your ship. I thought it was a good idea, so I did too. She didn’t know I had stowed away though, not until I scared her almost to death when grabbed her in the alleyway where they took you. She almost revealed herself. Fresh Meat is a moron.”

Bucky felt himself being lifted. There was movement around him, but he had trouble seeing what was going on. He felt somebirdy peel away his blood crusted mane from his face. “Where… where is Minion?” he asked.

“I am here, Master,” Sunset Shimmer said, stepping through the door. “I was not aware that Loki and Boadicea would be joining us. Oh Master… what have they done to you?”

Bucky saw burning red eyes blinking in front of his face. Gravity fell away from his body and he was lifted. Sunset Shimmer was wearing a black cloak and the alicorn amulet hung around her neck.

“Boadicea killed the jailer. She ambushed him and strangled him with piano wire. Loki shot some of the guards with poisoned darts. We’ve hid their bodies. We need to get you out of here and go home.”

“No… we must… we must finish our mission.”

“Master, do not be foolish—”

“We may not get this chance again,” Bucky said in a faint rasp.

“Bucky, please, you are dying—”

“Obey me.”

Sunset Shimmer bowed her head. “Yes Master, I will do what I am told.”

 

 

Loki, in the lead, peered up and down the narrow passageway, looking for signs of trouble. Behind him, Boadicea had her ear hole pressed to the stone. The pair of griffons, alert to danger, both reacted at the same time.

“Trouble,” Loki hissed.

Sunset Shimmer, carrying Bucky in a protective bubble, stepped into a cell and then hid behind the door. Loki vanished into another cell. Boadicea scrambled up the wall.

A pegasus came around the corner and into the hallway lined with cell doors. He paused, looking around, and noted the empty table where the jailer should have been sitting. As the pegasus opened his mouth, Boadicea dropped down from the ceiling.

A loop of piano wire was slipped around the pegasus’ neck. His eyes bulged as Boadicea yanked it tight. Stepping out from the shadowy doorway, Loki grabbed the pegasus by the snoot, his talons sinking into the pegasus’ flesh.

“No… no screams for you… you die… slowly and in much pain,” Loki hissed, his voice one of pure feline evil. Loki stared into the dying pegasus’ eyes and watched as the light within them went dim.

The pegasus’ legs collapsed and he fell to the floor, his legs giving feeble kicks.

Boadicea gave a final hard yank and the pegasus’ life ended with a gurgle. She whipped the piano wire garrote from around its neck and looked at Loki. “How did I do?”

“That was better Fresh Meat, but your technique still needs work,” Loki replied.

Stepping out from inside the cell, Sunset Shimmer blinked her burning red eyes. Her horn was consumed with the same red glow that emanated from the alicorn amulet. “We move. Slow and steady. We find the portal room, we blow up the little portal they have here, we try to recover the control rod, and then we get out of here.”

“Oh shite…” One very surprised looking unicorn stood staring.

Sunset Shimmer’s horn flared and a thin red beam struck the unicorn. He combusted, burning away in the blink of an eye, becoming ash that fluttered in the air like snowflakes.

“Trixie tried to warn me,” Sunset Shimmer said in a low voice. “I meant to stun him.”

“Screw him,” Loki said. “This is no longer a mine but a grave.” The angry, murderous little griffon began dragging the dead pegasus into a cell to hide the body. “I will scout ahead. Fresh Meat, you are my shadow. Sunset, you guard our king. If things get bloody and our cover is blown, just let go with everything you have.”

Sunset Shimmer nodded.

 

 

Standing in shadow, Loki waited for the unicorn to pass. He glanced upwards at Boadicea, who clung to the ceiling, and shook his head. He saw her nod. Seeing the unicorn’s tail, Loki stepped out, grabbed the stallion by his tail, lifted, and then Loki drove his poison soaked stiletto into stallion’s balls. He made a stirring motion with his blade, and there was wet squelching from the unicorn’s groin.

The unicorn was dead before hitting the ground. Loki pulled his blade out.

There was no place to hide the body. Loki stood there with a bloody stiletto, trying to figure out what to do next. He glanced at Sunset Shimmer, who came out from around the corner. “Save your magic. We leave him. Our cover is bound to be blown eventually.”

“Trouble!” Boadicea hissed. She scuttled off along the ceiling, her claws allowing her to cling to the soft stone.

Loki lifted his head, watching, waiting, and he pulled a small crossbow from off of his back. A quarrel was already loaded. As a pegasus came around the distant corner, a black shadow dropped down upon him. A soft gurgle reached Loki’s ears. He watched his pupil strangle the pegasus, evaluating her performance, seeing where she made mistakes, and when this was over, planned to explain in detail everything she was doing wrong.

He also planned to praise her for what she was doing right.

The pegasus dropped dead and Boadicea went slinking up the hall, back to Loki’s side.

“We move. The bodies are piling up and more are bound to be along.” Sunset Shimmer looked at Loki and waited.

The griffon took off, his head cocked, listening for danger, walking on three legs with his stiletto out and ready in his talons. Boadicea moved beside him and somewhat behind him.

“We killed a fair number coming in… I don’t know how many are here, but we have to have thinned them out a fair bit by now,” Sunset Shimmer said in a low whisper.

Coughing, Bucky vomited an enormous gout of blood out onto the floor, which caused Boadicea to whimper. After the coughing subsided, a soft wet, raspy cackle came out of Bucky’s lips as he began to laugh.

 

 

“There is gonna be a fight,” Loki said, looking up at Sunset Shimmer. “Through that door is a big room. There are at least ten ponies in there, all of them unicorns. Looks like a place of study.”

Sunset Shimmer shook her head and some of her mane spilled out from inside of her black hood. “This is is going to be bad.”

“Keep Fresh Meat in a bubble and out of danger if you can.” Loki began to dribble something on his blade from a glass vial.

“What about you?” Boadicea asked.

Still poisoning his blade, Loki replied, “It is time for me to be a psychopomp.” He tossed away the now empty glass vial. “Sunset, you don’t need to worry about me. Just let go with everything you have. I’ll go into the room first and give them something to think about.”

Sunset Shimmer’s eyes narrowed. “Be careful Loki.”

Walking on two legs, a vicious looking dirk in his right talons and a stiletto in his left talons, Loki slipped through the door and out of view of Sunset Shimmer.

 

 

Feeling a perverse sense of pleasure, Loki watched as the unicorns in the room blinked in surprise upon seeing him. “Hello… my name is Loki Apple… you have offended me by injuring my king. All of you are dead ponies!”

As the incoming spells flew at him, Loki vanished in a poof of fire.

He appeared behind a very surprised unicorn mare. Both blades sank into her backside, one vanishing as it sank into her crotch. He pulled out and vanished again in another poof of fire. This time he appeared behind another unicorn, a male. Loki drove one blade into the stallion’s scrotum and the other blade went into the buttock.

It was at this point that Sunset Shimmer entered the room, blazing brightly, and at full power with the alicorn amulet. The unicorns, who had been caught by surprise, were getting spell defenses up.

Loki found his blades bouncing off of a glowing barrier when he teleported behind another unicorn. The room filled with fire and smoke. Screams filled the air. Several unicorns standing together melted like wax and then Loki noticed the glowing barrier was gone. Both of Loki's blades sank into the surprised unicorn.

And then, it was over. Nothing was left alive in the room.

“What do we have here?” Sunset Shimmer stepped towards a glass cabinet.

“Control rod,” Bucky gasped in reply.

With no sense of stealth, Sunset Shimmer smashed the cabinet and picked up the rod. It was short, made of metal, studded with crystals, and made her sinuses buzz when she touched it with magic.

“Good Minion… best Minion…” Bucky’s voice was a weak, wet wheeze.

“Come on Loki… let’s geld these motherpluckers…”

 

 

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