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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There were a lot of neat things in this house that Luna had never noticed before, never paid much attention to, never took the time to look at. Standing up on Barley’s chair by the fireplace, she stretched out her neck as far as she could, braced her front hooves on the stones that formed the fireplace, and peered over the edge of the mantle.

The first thing she noticed was a small glass pegasus. It was exquisite in detail, flawless, perfect in every way, even the bubbles on the pegasus’ hips were present. It was one of the most beautiful things Luna had ever seen. Beside the glass pegasus was a glass earth pony, also perfect. Each thick curl in her mane had been captured. Next to the earth pony was a smaller figure, and her smile revealed many pointed teeth. Her waterweed mane and tail even had little glass blossoms. Sitting down beside the glass kelpie was a tiny glass griffoness, perfect in scale to the rest of the figures. Every feather on her wings were visible. There was a glass unicorn with a lyre next, she had a mischievous expression upon her face. Beside the unicorn was a solid, stocky earth pony. The earth pony’s face was kind, loving, and she had a soft smile.

There was another unicorn, a male, much older, wrinkled, wise looking, and he had a familiar scowl. Around the older male unicorn was a whole herd of little glass foals. One little glass unicorn foal hugging an earth pony foal. Two lunar pegasi foals, one male, one female. Beside the lunar pegasus colt there was a little earth pony filly made out of pink glass. The male lunar pegasus was looking over much smaller foals. A tiny little unicorn with a frizzy mane. A tiny glass alicorn. A little glass zebra. One little foal that looked like an earth pony but Luna knew it was a kelpie.

Another little family of glass ponies stood near. A tall unicorn that had cloven hooves. Another unicorn that stood beside the tall one. A pegasus with a very goofy grin. Another pegasus, this one wearing ornate war shoes. Between the pegasi, there was a donkey.

It was the most marvellous thing Luna had ever seen. She stood there, entranced, feeling tears welling up in her eyes, not knowing why she was overcome with emotion.

“Those belong to father… those are all things that he considers his. There are other figures he plans to create when he has the time. That is the collection of ‘do not touch’ and the things that father values.”

Dropping down into the chair, Luna looked at Sentinel.

“Those are the most important things to father. What he frets over. What he worries about. Those are things he loves.” Sentinel moved into the room and looked at Luna. She wasn’t that much larger than he was. “I know for certain that father plans to create a few more alicorns and each of the Elements of Harmony.”

“They are beautiful,” Luna said, looking at Sentinel.

“Father would burn away the land and boil away the oceans for each of them.” Sentinel blinked. “Are you okay? My mother, Derpy, had a talk with me. She told me what happened.”

“I am fine now… this body is new. I am untouched,” Luna replied.

“That is not what I asked. I asked if you are okay. You are more than a body.” Sentinel’s brow furrowed and his expression became stern.

A pained expression crept over Luna’s face as she stared at Sentinel. “No Sentinel, I am not okay.” Luna’s voice dropped into a low whine. “I remember the pain. I remember everything. I remember standing on my balcony and seeing my home burning. I remember everything… everything… and I remember my sister reducing me to ashes.”

Sentinel moved towards the chair, his hooves making no sound on the wooden floor. He lept up into the chair beside Luna, sat down, and ignoring Luna’s protests, wrapped a wing around her and pulled her close. When Luna tried to squirm away, Sentinel applied more pressure and pinned her in place. After a moment, Luna went still and Sentinel felt her lean on him.

“Luna, where were your guards? Your Myrmidons?” Sentinel asked.

“I sent them away to guard my little ponies. I had my Myrmidons on the streets shielding my subjects. The lunar guard were all working to evacuate burning buildings and airlift the injured. I kept no protection for myself,” Luna replied.

“We serve and we do what we can.” Sentinel rubbed his cheek against Luna and left behind a somewhat greasy looking dark patch just below her ear. He ignored her squirming and muttered protests.

“The house is so quiet,” Luna said, breaking the silence after a long moment of quiet.

“The little foals are being bathed and readied for bed. Dinky and Piña are busy researching something top secret. There are moments where this house is quiet.” Sentinel could feel Luna’s heart beating through her ribs. He could hear it too, it was a faint, steady, muffled thump.

“Thank you, Sentinel,” Luna said in a low whisper.

“For what?” Sentinel asked.

“For being you,” Luna replied as she closed her eyes.

 

 

“Look, little fillies need to go to bed,” Berry Punch said in a low voice to Dinky and Piña.

“Tough luck. We have homework. We have research that needs to be done. We have things we need to do. Maybe you should have thought about that before moving them into our room.” Piña gave Berry Punch a petulant stare and narrowed her eyes.

Drawing in a deep breath, Berry Punch summoned her patience but refused to admit that Piña might have had a point. She glowered down at the defiant earth filly and tried to think about what it was that she could say.

“This is our room, our place of study, the place where we work and play and sleep and we do stuff in here. We can’t get our homework done if the lights are turned off and little fillies need to sleep.” Piña’s ears pitched forwards in aggressive defiance. “I bet you didn’t even think about our needs or how this might have caused some problems.”

“Piña—”

“If you did think of these problems, if you did think about how this affects us, we wouldn’t be butting heads right now.” Piña sat down on the floor and did her best to look smug.

“Fine… one more night in the nursery for them. But only so we can sort out these issues,” Berry Punch said as she backed out the door. “You know, there is nothing stopping you from doing your homework in another room. The library or the dining room.”

“All our stuff is in here.” Piña’s lip protruded into a pouty smirk.

“You know Piña… while you’re doing this homework of yours, you should spend some time thinking.” Berry Punch stood in the hallway and looked down at her sister. “Think long and hard how your sister changed her entire life to look after you and see that you were cared for. Imagine if I didn’t have the time or the desire to look after you.” Berry Punch slammed the door and then stomped off down the hall.

In her room, Piña’s face fell and she discovered that she had nothing smart to say.

 

 

In the nursery, Luna sat in the big bowl shaped chair with Erebus curled up against one side and Cadance sitting on the other side. Cadance burbled and was blowing spit bubbles, making happy little foal noises as her head bobbed up and down.

A short distance away, Barley sat in the rocking chair and his head nodded as he dozed.

“Mama missed you,” Lyra said to Harper as she sat on the floor, hugging Harper and squeezing the unicorn foal until her eyes bulged. Lyra fell over onto her side, rolled over onto her back, and pulled Harper up on top of her, still squeezing.

With a snort, Barley awoke. He looked around and saw Lyra. “Closed early?" he asked. After a moment, his muzzle split into a wide yawn and he let out a sleepy sounding whine.

“The store was dead so we closed early and I came home to see my little Harpy!” Lyra rolled around on her back.

Recovering, able to breathe once more, Harper attacked her mother’s face with kisses and little electric shocks every time her muzzle touched Lyra’s face. The little zaps had an audible crackle and blue sparks arced between the filly and her mama.

“Have we figured out where Luna is sleeping tonight?" Derpy asked from the bedroom, her voice soft as it came through the nursery door.

“With me,” Barley replied. His wrinkled face slipped into a scowl and he somehow looked even older. “All that matters to me is that she’s a warm body. Erebus too.”

“Okay.” Derpy’s voice sounded relieved as it drifted through the doorway.

“If Erebus wakes up hungry, give a holler.” Lyra looked up at Barley and gave him a sad smile. She craned her head around as Harper continued to kiss her and looked at Luna. “I’m glad you are here with us. I mean, it shows a lot of trust, you being here, and letting us look after you and Erebus… I mean, well, I hope you understand what I am saying.”

“Thank you, Lyra Heartstrings,” Luna said as her eyes began to glisten.

“I… I need a drink.” Barley got up out of the rocking chair, stretched, and then stood there blinking.

“I could use a strong drink as well.” Luna looked at Barley with wide, hopeful eyes.

“Not a chance lass, yer too young.” Barley shook his head.

“Barley, I am an adult in the body of a foal,” Luna’s hopeful expression turned to one of anger and her thin brows furrowed as her ears pinned back. Her blue mane slipped down over her face.

“You come and talk to me when you’re an adult in the body of a teenager, and maybe we’ll talk, if you’ve been well behaved.” Barley’s wrinkles intensified as he gave Luna the stinkeye.

“You cannot just treat me like I am a foal!” Luna cried.

“I can’t?” Barley’s eyebrow raised and his tail twitched.

Harper, sensing a bad foal, stopped kissing Lyra. Sitting on Lyra’s barrel, Harper raised her head and watched the contest of wills as it unfolded. Electrical arcs coursed through her mane and her dark purple eyes were wide.

“If you demean me I will have my guard summoned and I will demand to go home!” Luna glared in defiance at Barley, her ears perked forwards, and she gave the older stallion an imperious, aggressive stare. “I am your Princess, and I demand that you do as I say!”

“I dinnae have to take this sort of shite,” Barley said in a low growling voice.

His horn flared and Luna was yanked out of the bowl shaped chair. She kicked and wiggled, but was held fast in Barley’s telekinesis. A hairbrush slid off of the changing table and flew across the room. Luna was turned around, her tail was pushed aside, and there was a single loud -THWAP!- as the brush slapped against Luna’s left buttock. Luna’s eyes bulged, her cheeks puffed out, and both ears splayed out into a submissive position. Luna then squealed in pain and fury, kicking, thrashing about in the air, and Barley levitated her into the corner.

She tried to turn about to face Barley, but found that her hooves would not move and she was stuck facing the corner. Tears rolled down her cheeks and Luna began to sniffle.

“What is going on in here?” Bucky asked as he appeared in the door. He looked around, looking confused and worried.

“Luna got a smart mouth. And I popped her one over her little blue backside to show that I don’t take no sass. Dinnae worry, it wasn’t hard, more sound and sting than anything else. And now she’s gonna stand in the corner for a while,” Barley replied as he set down the hairbrush.

“Release me at once!” Luna demanded. “Buckminster! Make him let me go! I command you! You are obligated to do to as I say! Now have him release me at once!”

“Barley, you know how I feel about spanking… how hard?” Bucky asked, looking a bit out of sorts. The confused look on Bucky’s face said a lot about the situation.

“I assure ye, not hard. A little sting and some sound.” Barley’s voice was now calm and reassuring.

“How hard?” Bucky cocked his head to the side and fixed his gaze upon Barley. There was some edge to Bucky’s voice now. Something burned in his grey eye, the first ember of what could become anger.

“Fine lad, I’ll show ye,” Barely replied. He lifted the brush, levitated it over to Bucky, and gave Bucky a swat on the backside, giving it the same oomph as the one he had given to Luna.

Standing there, with an almost slow mechanical motion, Bucky turned his head towards Luna. “You… you are going to stand in the corner for however long Lyra decides. No more sass. You are under my care and your sister has given me full authority over you. We do not tolerate spoiled foals.” Bucky turned his head back to Barley. “That was far more gentle than I thought. Violet hits harder than that with a newspaper. Don’t let this become a habit. There are better ways to punish than spanking.”

In the corner, Luna sobbed as she realised how hopeless this situation was and that her authority meant nothing any longer.

“When all of this is over, both of you are going to apologise to one another and that will be the end of this. Do I make myself clear?” Bucky asked.

“Aye, as crystal lad,” Barley said, nodding his head.

“Good. I am glad we have resolved this. Now go sit in the corner Barley, and think about what you’ve done. You can come out when Lyra says it's okay.”

“What?” Barley’s eyes went wide with shock.

“Did I stutter?” Bucky lifted his talons and pointed at the other corner, the only empty corner left.

Sighing, Barley nodded. “Aye lad, I suppose I deserve this. I struck her in anger.” Barley shuffled off to the corner, stuck his nose into it, and sat down on the floor. He heaved a sigh and slumped over in shame.

“Lyra, see that they apologise to one another before you send them off to bed. I want a sincere apology too. If you sense any lip service at all, back into the corner with both of them. And I want more than an ‘I’m sorry’ being exchanged. I want some meaningful words said. Now if you will excuse me, my head hurts and I am not in the mood for these sorts of problems right now.” Bucky turned around and departed with a snort, going back into the bedroom.

“Wow, both of you got off with a light sentence,” Lyra said in a low whisper once Bucky was gone.

 

 

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