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


637. 637

There was an air of tension inside the mead hall. The gathered griffons and ponies all waited, looking at the cloth draped statue that would be soon revealed. The building, which was constructed out of stone and logs, was a simple thing. There was a central fire pit, cellars excavated down into the earth for storage, a simple but expansive kitchen, and many comfortable padded cushions that could be strewn along the floor Near the fire pit, there was a raised platform that would serve as a stage. At the rear of the platform was the statue, still unseen.

A fire blazed in the fire pit and a haze of smoke hung in the air. The sweet scent of wood burning played along the nostrils. There was laughter in the air, much laughter, and the building was crowded.

Lugus, who felt good about all of this, looked around, trying to see if he could spot Loki, who seemed to have disappeared. The little harrier griffon had vanished at about the same time that they had come home. Lugus’ eyes fell upon Bucky, who was laughing and sprawled out on a pile of cushions with Belisama. There was no sign of Berry Punch, no sign of Derpy, no sign of Thistle, and Lugus wondered what was up. Lyra and Bon Bon would be in town by now, back to work. There was no sign of Ripple.

As Lugus was looking around the room, a grizzled old griffon climbed up onto the raised platform and cleared his throat.



Over the carriage house, there were apartments, small living spaces, what amounted to bedrooms for the griffons, with a shared living space, community area, and kitchen, which is how the griffons liked it. The flock ate together, played together, and when private time was needed, they had their own little spot to curl up and have a quiet moment alone.

And in was in one of these small rooms that a grey harrier griffon and a jay griffoness with remarkable blue feathers lay together in bed, both of them on their backs, staring up at the ceiling. Around the jay griffoness’ neck, there was a small silver collar, a simple thing.

“So what does your name mean, anyway?”

“Gormlaith? It means blue princess… it is such a silly name. Which is why I ask everybirdy to call me Gormley.”

“I think I like Gormlaith.”

“I think I like you.” The blue griffoness began to titter and wiggled closer to the griffon beside her. “So… why me?”

“Honest answer?”

“Honest answer.”

“You came to me during a very troubled moment in my life. You were simple and uncomplicated. You knew exactly what you wanted. The other griffonesses I know… they’re complicated. They have complicated wants and needs. You wanted just one thing. I wanted just one thing. It felt right.”

“I like this collar… I like knowing I have value.”

Loki said nothing, but took a deep breath.

“I still do not know what it is you want.”

“What I want is this right here.”

“This? I don’t understand.”

“I want to come home and have somebirdy to lay beside. Just like this. And to talk to.”

“Oh. I see. This is nice.”



Sitting on the stage, the grizzled old griffon looked at the crowd. Beside him, a very nervous griffon named Tapper sat, twitching and jerking. Odin reached out and patted the jumpy griffon, which was a mistake. Tapper shot for the ceiling, his wings flapping, squawking with alarm. On the stage, Odin waited for Tapper to come back down.

The high strung griffon landed on the stage and then began to preen his wings with nervous abandon, tugging on his feathers with his beak.

Odin sighed and felt a pang of sadness. Tapper was a marvelous craftsbirdy, but had seen too much abuse, just like so many other of the little griffons.

“I suppose we should get right to the point.” Odin cleared his throat. “The first statue was a bust…” Odin waited for his joke to sink in and he was rewarded with a few chuckles. “Tapper found a piece of rose marble and said he saw a vision of beauty inside. I have seen the statue. He wasn’t lying.”

With a yank, Odin pulled the cloth off of the statue. There was a gasp.

Belisama’s statue had her posed standing on her hind legs, as some little griffons tended to do. Her wings were spread, wide open, and she was cradling her large pregnant belly with her talons. Her beak was open and she was looking down at her bulging stomach. Her likeness had been carved in soft pink rose marble, and no detail was spared. It was accurate in every conceivable way.

“I can see her kitten b—”


The hall erupted in laughter.

“Barley O’Blivion was kind enough to provide us with this cask of mead. I know it is still early in the day, but how about we start celebrating?” Odin tossed the drop cloth aside and looked over the crowd. Odin raised his talons.

“Before we begin… some of you have heard stories about Loki… and I’d like a moment to talk about that.” Odin sat down and looked at the crowd. “You… you Raptors, but not just you… any of you… if any of you die in the service of another… I might just call you to me. Loki chose to serve. He chose to devote his entire existence to protecting all of you and everything that you are working so hard to create for ourselves.”

The crowd was silent, the only sound was ruffling feathers.

“Today, we celebrate our future. In Canterlot, Queen Agnetha will soon give birth to a prince. Here at home, we already have Princess Bandua. Things are looking up for us.” Odin’s crest rose and the griffon lifted his head.

“I did good,” Tapper said in a nervous wheeze. “I did good.”

“Yes, you did good,” Odin said to the nervous griffon beside him.



Sparkler awoke seconds after something impacted her ribs and sent her flying from the bed. Not really awake and exhausted, her usual defense did not kick in. She bounced off of the wall and then hit the floor, banging her chin hard enough to see stars.

A moment later, she felt something strong pick her up, lift her up high, and squeeze the air out of her. Sparkler panicked, tried to breathe, couldn’t, and then saw the floor rushing up to greet her once more.

Just a fraction of a second before a face first impact with the floor, Sparkler turned to stone. With a terrific, thunderous crash, Ripple piledrived Sparkler through the floor.

Both fillies tumbled into the foundry below, which was cold and unused this day.

Sparkler was the first to get to her hooves. She wobbled, she might have been stone, but she had felt that. She shook her head and looked at Ripple. “What has gotten into you? Are you crazy!”

“Yes!” Ripple snapped. “Now turn back into a pony so I can kick your plot all over this foundry!”

“Ripple, what are you doing? Have you lost your mind?” Sparkler backed away from Ripple, feeling a little fearful.

“You don’t deserve to be alpha! You’ve messed up! I’m taking this from you!” Ripple advanced. “A filly needs her daddy…” At the sound of Ripples’ words, her war shoes blinked into existence around her hooves. She kicked a divot free from the stone floor and sent it flying across the room.

“Fine! I give… uncle… auntie… whatever!” Sparkler forced herself to turn back into flesh and she looked at Ripple. “You shoved me through the floor!”

“DO I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION NOW?” Ripple kicked the floor again and sparks flew from her shoes.

“Yes… now calm down!” Sparkler snapped.

“NO!” Ripple’s lips pulled back from her teeth. “I want my family back! Loch is in the house… they have her scrubbing floors and doing laundry and she’s crying and I live in a pigsty and Loch Skimmer just asked me to move back in with them and THAT AIN’T HAPPENING!”

“What?” Sparkler’s eyes narrowed in confusion.

“You are going to fix this hole because I know you can. After that, we are going to clean this wretched mess… together. You are going to do everything I say because I’m the alpha mare now… we are going to clean this mess up and then you and I are going to figure out how to get my sister back!”


“SHUT UP! I want things back the way they were. When it was just us all being together, talking, telling each other that we would make this work! I believed in you… I TRUSTED you! You told me things would work out and that you would look after me! My sister is gone… we’re… I don’t even know if we are a herd anymore and I WANT IT ALL BACK!”

“Ripple, I—”


Sparkler looked into Ripple’s magenta eyes and saw fury. Ripple’s ribs were heaving. Sparkler realised that she was seeing a side of Ripple that most things would only see just before they died. Under the fury, Sparkler saw… grief.

“I’ll fix the hole. Afterwards, you and I will go upstairs. We’ll get everything cleaned up. Together. And then we’ll figure out what to do next. Together.” Sparkler backed up a few steps from Ripple and tried to let Ripple calm down. “I’m sorry—”




Looking up from Belisama’s eyes, Bucky saw Gofannon and Helia together on a cushion, having a quiet moment, both of them alone in a crowd. Helia had a day off from work. Something about the scene warmed his heart.

There was music in the mead hall, but the celebration lacked the boisterous quality that Bucky expected, perhaps because it was still early in the day and the mead had only begun to flow.

“How was your night out?” Belisama asked, her beak inches from Bucky’s ear.

“It was a hoot,” Bucky replied.

Fluffing out, Belisama felt Bandua moving against her. She reached out a wing, wrapped it around Bucky’s neck, and pulled him closer in a hug, glad for this moment. “Bucky, I can’t drink and it is getting too warm in here for me. Bandua will want to sleep. I’m sorry, but I think I’ll need to go soon.”

“Okay… I think I’ll need some sleep soon. We’ll escape together,” Bucky said as he pressed his muzzle into Belisama’s neck.

“Griffons, ponies, gather round and I shall tell you a tale,” Odin said in a booming voice.



The sun shining through the narrow window warmed the bed, the golden light seeped through the blankets and into the two bodies beneath the blanket. Loki, lying on his back, held Gormlaith, who had her head draped over his girth and was laying on her belly.

Gormlaith’s talon finger moved in slow lazy circles just above Loki’s navel, her claw angled away from his skin. Her eyes were closed and on her face was an avian expression of bliss.

Loki felt a strange sensation of peace. It almost felt like boredom, but was far more enjoyable. It was warm and pleasant. There was a warm soft body using him as a pillow for her head. The bed was soft beneath his back. His armor and his doublet lay on the floor, his sword belt was hung from the bedpost, and his many weapons were scattered over the bedside table.

Because of this, Loki felt naked and exposed. He ran his talons up Gormlaith’s back, feeling the bumps of her spine, and he felt the griffoness shiver. Closing his eyes, Loki slipped off into a mid morning nap.



With a grunt, Ripple flung the filthy sheets into the fire. They ignited and began to burn right away, filling the apartment with a horrible eye watering stench. She returned to the bedroom for the pillowcases, yanked them off one by one, and then carried them back into the main room to toss them into the fireplace. Returning to the fireplace, she tossed in the pillowcases.

“You burned the bedding,” Sparkler said in a low, tired voice.

“It was filthy. And there is no way I am going to go do the laundry in the farmhouse. They’ll make Loch Skimmer do it. I’m going to fly into Ponyville and buy new sheets. I have a little money, I think it will be enough,” Ripple replied.

“You sound a little calmer.” Sparkler kept her distance. Ripple was fast, Sparkler knew this from experience.

“Look… as the alpha, we’re going to do things my way. We’re going to clean this place. And then, once everything is spotless, we’re going to go to the farmhouse, and we’re going to get my sister. I don’t care if we have to foalnap her, she is coming home with us. I am not leaving that house without her. And then, we’re going to come back to this place and we’re going to talk about some changes.”

“Like what?” Sparkler asked.

“Like all of this mindless nookie… Berry Punch gave me an earful about all the problems we have. This is why Bittersweet and I don’t do anything but neck and make out with one another. We know we’re not mature enough for the other stuff and we know it. You, my sister, and Rising, do you even feel the love you once had? It’s just mindless sex for all of you, all the time, no more romance, no more sweet words, just wake up to a nice dry humping how do you do, go through the empty motions, and then sleep. DISGUSTING!”

The ferocity of Ripple’s words brought tears to Sparkler’s eyes. She blinked a few times, wanted to say something, but then chose to remain silent. She felt the side of her face convulsing and one hind leg began kicking as her Shivers began to manifest from stress.

“How can you even be doing your job as an officer? Those sheets were so greasy and gross… can you smell them burning? Do you know how you must have smelled when you crawled out of bed and went to school or went on patrol? You’re all matted and gross and I wouldn’t touch you if Lugus was stabbing me in my arse with a pike! You take a shower and then you sleep in wretched filth!”

Sparkler looked around. The apartment was cleaner. Much of the trash had been cleared. Sparkler had cleaned the stuff off of the walls. The dishes were done. Ripple had scrubbed the floor with scrubbing shoes. The floor was scuffed, marked from hooves, and in dire need of waxing, but it was much cleaner. There was still a lot that needed to be done.

“I am off to Ponyville… and if I come back home and I find you napping, so help me, I will bring the wrath of a pissed off alpha on your head. I am going to get new bedding and then when I come home, we’re going to have to figure out a way of rescuing my sister.”

“By the time you come back, I will try to have most of this cleaned, I promise,” Sparkler said.

“I don’t believe you!” Ripple stomped out the door and slammed it behind her.



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