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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The Grand Galloping Gala… the event of the year. This one promised to be exceptional—there was going to be a coronation of new royalty, Prince Sentinel and Princess Boadicea, who would one day rule the Griffonwood region and the Everfree. Expectations were high.

But Princess Celestia could not think about the coming preparations at the moment. She watched her nephew with worry, her brows furrowed, her wings twitching at her sides. Luna had him calmed, he was almost asleep at the moment, but seeing him as he was—it was shocking. She hoped that this side effect could and would be overcome.

As Celestia continued to watch her sister soothe Bucky, she opened dialogue with Raven about the preparations that needed to be done. “We must fetch as many of Sentinel’s parents that can come. Boadicea’s too. I understand that things are rough at home, and if necessary, we shall send help. Sentinel needs his family here during his coronation.”

“Agreed,” Raven replied as she began to write something down in her planner. “We can send a caravan to get the family and bring the little ones along too—”

“Oh, I’d like that!” Princess Celestia’s face lit up and her head began bobbing. “I think it would be good for our dearest Buckminster. He needs his little ones. He needs some downtime before he begins his invasion.”

“Princess Celestia…” Raven’s voice was low, little more than a soft, breathy whisper, and the smaller unicorn mare leaned closer to the large white alicorn. “There is something off about Buckminster.”

“Yes, he is out of sorts.” Celestia’s eyes narrowed and she glanced downwards at her secretary.

“No.” Raven shook her head and a strand of her mane slipped free from her bun.

“Something else?” Celestia asked in a low voice as Bucky went still—asleep by the looks of it.

“Something has changed,” Raven said in a conspiratorial whisper. “His raw animal magnetism is gone. His charisma. His attractiveness that he always had, that feeling of giddiness he caused, no matter how”—Raven paused and cleared her throat— “twisted he became, there was something appealing about him. It’s gone now.”

Lifting her eyes from her secretary and looking once more at Bucky, Celestia nodded. “Yes, yes it is. His… ahem… vampiric nature gave him an undeniable amount of sex appeal. Something about him is downright repulsive now.”

“What a terrible thing to say.” Raven shook her head and slipped her planner into her satchel. “Do you think his wives will notice? Do you think there will be… changes?

“I dare say that the grey pegasus will love him no matter what happens. As for the others… no, no I do not believe that they will be any less attracted to him. Love makes one blind. For all of their faults as a herd, and there are many, they are inseparable. I do not think things will change for them.”

“That’s a relief.” Raven let out a huff, tossed her head back to be rid of the strand of her mane hanging down in her face, and then looked up at Celestia. “You and I will not be able to dance together at the gala… ponies will talk. Violet too.”

“I am starting to care less and less what other ponies think,” Celestia muttered.

 

 

Grinning from ear to ear, fangs bared, Rising Star chortled with glee, trying to remain as quiet as possible as he lowered Cadance down onto the daybed with Bucky. The little foal kicked, wiggled, and fretted, but she too, understood the need for surprise.

Meanwhile, Sentinel was being suffocated by Derpy, who was beside herself and almost crying with relief as she held her son. Thistle, holding Bell Heather in her teeth, slunk over to the bed, gave a mischievous glance around, and dropped Bell just as Rising Star was setting Cadance down.

While all of this was going on, Harper, who was overwhelmed, was torn by the need to see her beloved Mamamama and her urgent need to go potty. The stabbing sensation in her bladder won out and she darted away, following Lyra, who knew exactly what Harper needed by the little dance that the funny little filly was doing.

With a snort, Bucky’s left eye opened as both Cadance and Bell Heather began bonking him on the head—his eye was grey, normal, gone were the alarming discolourations from earlier. He let out a snarling yawn, which caused Bell Heather to squeal, and then grabbed both fillies in his forelegs, pulled them close, squishing them to him, and then closed his eye once more.

Not content to be held, both Cadance and Bell continued with their skull bonking in an effort to rouse their father. Bell even went as far to get one of Bucky’s ears into her mouth and she began chewing. Not enough to draw blood, but she did draw a few stares of concern as she slobbered away on her favourite chewy.

Sukari, almost frantic, not knowing where to hide, darted beneath the bed and vanished, crawling along the floor on her belly as she disappeared into the secluded shadows beneath where her father was sprawled out.

A mother’s worry visible on her face, Berry Punch, unable to grab Sentinel away from Derpy, did the next best thing—she grabbed the grey pegasus and Sentinel both. She closed her eyes and choked back a sob as she pulled them close, crushing them both to her.

Piña and Dinky, glad to see both Berry and Derpy, piled in, grabbing ahold of whatever they could and clinging tight, turning the chance to squeeze Sentinel into a group effort.

Crisis, in unfamiliar surroundings, stood in the middle of her helpless siblings and tried to look as ferocious as possible. Her teeth were bared, her eyes glowed with some strange bioluminescence, and the beginnings of what would one day be a gut clenching, bowel loosening growl could be heard in her throat.

Bon Bon, in the mood to cuddle something, wanting to cuddle Harper, but denied because of a call of nature, snatched up Crisis instead, causing the befuddled foal to become quite confused. Crisis, who loved a good cuddle, was torn by her need to protect, as well as her need to feed. Her eyes flashed and then the dark green began to lighten, becoming her more usual shade of brilliant green.

“Where is Barley?” Loch Skimmer asked.

Thistle looked up from where she stood watching Bell Heather and Cadance bonking Bucky on his skull in an attempt to rouse him from his drowsy state. “He couldn’t make it. He refused to leave little Pinchy behind, and she couldn’t come either. He stayed at home.”

Ears drooping, Loch Skimmer let out a moan. “Aaaaw…” She kicked the floor with her front hoof, flicked her tail, and then went over to where the little ones were all piled up on a quilt spread over the floor. Heaving a sigh, she snatched little Barley in her forelegs and began hugging him.

Little Barley, quite upset about everything in general, began wailing, having reached the end of his ability to cope with all of the changes happening. Unbeknownst to Loch Skimmer, several heads turned to look at her, multiple pairs of eyes locked on to her, and even one of Bucky’s eyes opened to have a look.

The pegasus, soon to have a foal of her own, took all of this in stride, gave Barley a comforting squeeze, shushed him, and then began humming something that sounded a bit like a lullaby.

Rising Star, watching Loch Skimmer at work, suddenly understood Bucky’s fascination with mothers and foals—never in their time together had Loch Skimmer ever been more attractive to him. It wasn’t even just sex appeal… she was beautiful like this, astounding. Rising wanted to grab her, pull her close, hold on to her, and never let her go ever again. His eyes focused upon her rounded stomach and he thought about his responsibilities.

Brandywine, hearing her brother’s bawling, looked annoyed. She blinked a few times, not understanding what the big deal was. The pudgy giant struggled to sit up, and in doing so, stepped on Ditzy’s wing with her front hoof as she tried to lift herself. Ditzy, who did not like her wing being squished, squirmed and kicked, and in her struggles, she bopped her brother, Dizzy, right in the face. Dizzy, who had endured enough during the trip to Canterlot, decided to have a meltdown.

He rolled over onto his back, kicked his legs up into the air, and began blubbering in earnest. Loch Skimmer, still holding little Barley, scooped up Dizzy in her other foreleg, and, balanced on her haunches, held both foals in her loving embrace.

Looking more than a little peeved, Ditzy’s ears twitched and the threat of a good squall was upon her face. The little pegasus looked at the chubby earth pony beside her, frustrated, angry, and being a cranky little cuss, Ditzy reached out with her foreleg and cuffed Brandywine on the muzzle.

Blinking, eyes wide, Brandywine sat in stunned shock, and before any of the adults could react, did the only thing she could do in the situation. She fell over on Ditzy, pinning the pegasus to the blanket, and gave her annoyed (and somewhat flattened) sibling a much needed hug, which only made Ditzy even more furious.

Like Barley and Dizzy, Ditzy too, began to shriek in frustration.

 

 

“I’m starting to wonder if this was a good idea,” Berry Punch said as her eyes lingered on Bucky. He hadn’t left the bed and now had more than a few foals piled upon him. “Derpy, it takes so much work to move this family around now.”

“I know.” The grey mare heaved a weary sigh, shifted her body, and focused her good eye on Loch Skimmer, Sparkler, Ripple, and Bittersweet. She could hear three of the four fillies giggling as they fawned over Barley and Dizzy. “We had to come for Sentinel’s coronation though.”

“Think he’ll try to pull a vanishing act like his father?” Berry asked as she watched Bucky smooch Sukari’s scarred cheek.

“Naw,” Derpy replied without hesitation. “He’ll do right. But Boadicea… she might.”

The two mares, sitting together, observed the state of their family, their herd. Almost everypony was here. Beside them, Belisama was feeding Bandua, who had become quite vocal and animated during the commotion that had broken out.

“Boadicea will do what is right.” Belisama’s beak didn’t move as she spoke and the griffoness poured a spoonful of partially digested bugs down Bandua’s gullet.

“What makes you so sure?” Berry asked.

“Because of Sentinel,” Belisama replied.

“Sentinel?” Derpy’s head cocked off to one side and she eyed the griffoness.

“She’ll do it, not because its the right thing to do, or because of her honour, she’ll be there because Sentinel will be there. She’ll do right by him.” Belisama loaded up her spoon with more bug paste held in her lower beak.

“I don’t know how I feel about my baby being engaged.” Derpy’s nostrils flared and she heaved a forlorn sigh. “I mean, I know he and Moonbow have agreed to tie the knot for practical reasons… but Boadicea… they’re both so young… and this is all so political… and it just feels wrong to me.”  

Berry Punch, sensing Derpy’s frustration, right away tried to make the fussy pegasus beside her feel better. “They can both say no—”

“They could, yes, but Sentinel would never do such a thing. He knows he would be letting his father down and Sentinel couldn’t live with himself. There is no way he could actually say no in this situation. He would know that Bucky would be disappointed… so would Luna and Celestia. And Agnetha and Tannis. And even you, Belisama.” Derpy’s wings fidgeted. “Sentinel could only say no in theory. He’ll do this because it’s his duty. And I don’t like it.”

“I’m almost certain that Sentinel can hear us talking about him right now—”

“I don’t care, Belisama, I hope he does hear us talking.” Derpy let out a frustrated groan, shook her head, and then looked over where Sentinel was sitting with Boadicea and Diamond Tiara. “I just want him happy, that’s all. Is that so much to ask?” Derpy’s forelegs crossed over her barrel and her ears drooped down to the sides of her face.

Berry Punch, now looking over at Sentinel, gestured with her foreleg. “Oh, he’s happy… look at him… look at how Diamond Tiara fawns over him… how she hangs on his every word… I suspect that Sentinel is going to be one very happy colt. I think he’s found a way to keep himself happy…”

“What do you mean, Berry?” Derpy asked as she leaned closer to Berry.

“Oh, I think we’ll have to wait and see, but I have sneaking suspicion that Sentinel knows how to look after his own happiness,” Berry replied in a Berry happy voice.

 

 

 

 

 

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