• Published 23rd Dec 2012
  • 3,542 Views, 89 Comments

The Time Keeper of Ponyville - Askre

Time Turner is in love but is hesitant to really act on it. Other things in his life also distract him like the clock tower and a new employee at his shop.

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Chapter 12. Unexpected help from an old friend.

Chapter 12

Oh where is Big Mac when I need him. Time Turner slowly backed until he was standing side by side Private, Derpy also retreated closer to the other Pegasi mares. Four of them watched Barricade worriedly.

“So much for not being a colossal jerk, huh?” the clock smith whispered to Private.

“Can you blame a pony for having a slight hope his brother is finally turning around?” the Unicorn grunted, he was glaring at his twin.

“No, I guess I can’t.” Turner conceded.

The five ponies were only outnumbered by one but Time Turner could see they were clearly outmatched. He had seen all these ponies at the gym during the first trip to Manehattan. The clock smith did not like their chances of escape, it also puzzled him how quiet and empty this street was. It was almost as if the whole neighborhood had gone silent while this was happening.

Only Barricade approached the group, Barbell remained by the entrance of the alley and the others didn’t move from their points, it was like they were both making sure the five ponies couldn’t get away and keeping a watch for anyone walking in on this scene.

“Gee you know, I wonder what wild theories you have been having about what I’m up to,” Barricade chuckled as he began slowly circling them.

“Did I do this to lure Private away so someone who hired me to lure him away could break into your pathetic little house? Am I after those worthless old coins dad sent him? Have I gone mad? Am I trying to get rid of you so you stop bothering me?” The Unicorn entire focus was on Dew, Foxy and Private, so far he seemed to be ignoring Time Turner and Derpy.

“Maybe I’m trying to prove some sick point or maybe I just enjoy playing these sick games. Then again why be silent and docile for two years then suddenly spring this all on you?” Barricade’s eyes began to narrow and he kept circling.

“Barricade!” Private spoke up in an unusually audible voice for him. He gestured a hoof to Derpy and Time Turner. “Allow them to go; they don’t have to be involved in this. This is clearly between us three and you.”

Barricade stopped his circling and glanced at the two Ponyville Ponies as if he was noticing them for the first time. Derpy winched a little, uncomfortable memories were surfacing; now she wished she hadn’t so rashly flown to the city. She looked at Foxy who didn’t look as confident as before, she seemed mildly worried now. Dew looked nervous as well and only Private maintained a glare on his brother.

“Derpy,” Barricade snorted and peered down at the mare. “So, did it feel good to slap my face? Feel you finally have a backbone? You still think you can face me and come out on top?”

Derpy shrunk down at every question; this was more the Barricade she remembered. Her eyes went into two different directions; she just couldn’t focus them at the moment. The mare closed them and looked down, shaking her head. Time Turner frowned, he had never seen Derpy like this and realized now more than ever what damage Barricade had done to her. The clock smith stepped up in front of the Pegasus and glared right up at the Unicorn.

“Hey! You leave her alone you jerk! She’s a far braver and kinder pony than you will ever be!” he snapped. Deep inside his mind was going: What in Tartarus are you doing, you’re going to get yourself killed!

“Oh look, now the twig is speaking up,” Barricade chuckled and leaned a bit forward towards the clock smith. “You seriously think you are doing anything to impress? Are you hoping Derpy will just fall into your hooves by standing up against me? You honestly think you have even the slightest chance with her?”

Time Turner didn’t know what possessed him, but his right front hoof just suddenly rose up and hit Barricade right in the face. This wasn’t exactly a knockout punch, but it was enough that the Unicorn, despite his size advantage, staggered mildly disoriented back. The clock smith was frozen when he realized just what he had done; his expression was a mix of ‘what happened?’ and ‘I did not just do that.’

Derpy looked just as surprised, having dared to open her eyes again when Turner had stepped in front of her. Dew and Foxy’s jaws dropped but Private hoofed his face. The other ponies around looked grimmer, except for Barbell who was snickering.

“Seriously Barricade, I keep telling you. Don’t go within a striking distance of an Earth Pony, even the small untrained ones can give you a kick that you’ll feel for a while,” she chuckled. Barricade rubbed the sore spot on his face, glaring at the clock smith.

“Fine then, I’ll let an Earth Pony deal with him. Blue!” Barricade growled and looked across the street. There was no sign of the blue stallion. There came a faint groan from the alleyway he had been standing close too.

“Tornado,” the Unicorn frowned and gestured for the ash gray Pegasus stallion to check it out. The others became more alert and started to glance around expecting trouble.

The surrounded group had cringed when hearing what Barricade said, but they were now just as confused as to why Blue was gone. They watched Tornado fly to the alley, land in front of it and walk in. There was a loud smack and the Pegasus came sailing back to the sidewalk and crash landed there knocked out.

Out of the alleyway came a thinly built but a tall Earth Pony, dark gray with dark olive mane and tail. He looked grim and ready for anything; he nonchalantly stepped over the body of Tornado, narrowing his eyes on Barricade and the remainder of his gang. Time Turner and Derpy blinked when seeing the stallion, especially when noticing the police baton cutiemark.

“Tango?” they both said aloud.

“Take care of that idiot!” Barricade snapped to the two remaining Pegasi stallions. They both immediately took to the air and dove for the former police pony.

Tango followed their every movement and readied himself as the two Pegasi came in a high-speed dive. At literally the last second, the Earth Pony dove out of the way, making it impossible for his attackers to safely disengage and both crashed right into the ground.

The stallion looked up towards the rest of the ponies and his eyes opened wide in shock. He quickly ducked as a magic blast narrowly missed his head, but did singe the top of his mane. Barricade’s horn was glowing and was building up for another blast.

“Turner, Derpy, the rest of you, RUN!” Tango shouted after dodging the second blast. He took off down the street.

Since the path was clear, the group didn’t need to be told twice and all of them ran off, following the former officer. Barricade growled and was about shoot at them but changed his mind and with Barbell ran over to where the groaning Pegasi stallions lay. Just at that moment Blue came stumbling out of the alley, he had a two marks on his face where he had been kicked hard by Tango.

“Seriously, one pony?” Barricade growled at those of his gang who were still conscious. “Get up and follow them. Now!”

Tango lead them down several streets before they finally ran into an old looking apartment building deep in the city. They stopped in the hallway to catch their breaths but out of sight from the window of the door. Derpy and Turner looked at Tango after a second, they were now hugging each other, Derpy had just grabbed the clock smith in a tight embrace after they were clear and apparently safe and Turner himself was just glad to be hugging someone right now.

“Not to sound ungrateful or anything, but what are you doing here, Tango?” Time Turner asked.

“Hm? Oh.” Tango was approaching one of the ground floor apartment doors. He looked mildly ashamed when processing the question. “I was… given probation in light of my, uh, prior service in the police force.”

“Here in Manehattan?” Derpy raised an eyebrow.

“Uh yeah… at my request… I didn’t think I would be welcome back in Ponyville,” Tango muttered as he opened the door. He hesitated before entering. “You should come in until Barricade and his gang give up looking for you, it’s not safe out here in the hall.”

The five ponies followed him in and noted immediately how little there was in it, aside from some furniture in the living room, it didn’t seem Tango had made much effort in decorating it. There were empty takeout trays on the coffee table and lots of newspapers and magazines strewn around.

“So how in Equestria did you manage to get yourself in trouble with Barricade and his gang?” Tango asked as they all sat down in the living room.

“Well three of us,” Dew began as she sat in the only couch with Foxy and Private. “Have known him for a long time and we’ve had to deal with him on multiple occasions.”

“Well it’s a little complicated how Derpy and I got here,” Turner said, he and Derpy were seated close to the couch, after clearing some magazines away they had in fact found two stools. They then proceeded to tell Tango about how they got to the point of being surrounded by the gang. During the explanation they also introduced him to the ponies on the couch and told them a bit who Tango was and how they knew him.

“Oh right, Barricade lived in Ponyville didn’t he.” Tango nodded.

“Only for a short while but it was long enough,” Derpy sighed and shuddered. “I’m just about ready to go back there and just forget him. What was he going to do to us?”

“Well it looked to me he was about ready to trash all of you around. Barricade is very powerful in this part of Manehattan, most ponies living around here just know better than to get involved with anything he’s doing and keep out of the way,” Tango told them. “I’ve only been here for a little while and I’m already noticing how influential he is here.”

“That explains the empty street, nopony wanted to get involved and just turned a blind eye to it,” Turner muttered.

“And that might explain why we haven’t heard so much from him in the past two years, he’s been busy here in Manehattan, building up his connections and making sure ponies around here didn’t mess in his business. I can tell you that he was not a local gang leader before that. We were just so glad to not having any drama around him anymore we just completely missed it,” Dew said and sighed. “I’m so sorry you two had to get involved in this, I swear I thought this would just be a common social case.”

“Don’t apologize, we didn’t really see any of this coming until it was too late,” Derpy said and managed a weak smile. Turner put a hoof on her shoulder.

“Uh, thank you, Tango, your timing couldn’t have been better,” the clock smith looked at the former officer who hung his head but said nothing. “But why haven’t we heard about your probation?

“I…uh…” Tango fell silent. “Like I said earlier… I didn’t think was welcome back in Ponyville and… I… didn’t think I would be missed.”

“Are you serious?” Derpy jumped off the stool and approached Tango’s chair, she placed a hoof on his back. “Alright, to be fair, Filthy Rich and his family might not miss you. But lots of other ponies do, I know Mulberry would love to hear about you. I’ve certainly missed our chats when I delivered the mail to you and I’m sure Time Turner has missed you as well.”

“You made a mistake, Tango and we all make mistakes, you’re at least willing to pay for yours and I’m sure you can one day return back to Ponyville,” she told him and patted him reassuringly on the back.

Turner smiled a bit as he watched Derpy reassure their old friend. This was a trait he always admired about her. However, current events didn’t allow the clock smith to dwell on that, he looked at the trio on the couch. The mares seemed to have calmed down and Private was once again with a neutral expression.

“Well I can’t disagree with Tango’s assessment over what Barricade was going to do to us, but there still burns this lingering question, why?” Timer Turner asked.

“I frankly have no idea anymore,” Dew admitted with a sigh. “This was unusually violent for Barricade.”

All eyes now went to probably the only pony who could possibly have any clue what was going on. It took a second for Private to actually register that everyone was looking at him. The Unicorn raised an eyebrow but still didn’t say anything.

“Don’t give us that look, Private Iceland. Of all of us you know Barricade the best,” Dew said with a stern tone.

“Don’t ask about the last name, all you need to know is, eccentric parents,” Foxy whispered to Turner as she sat closest to him on the couch. The clock smith could only nod, but he figured the question was asked a lot if the maroon mare felt she needed to elaborate.

“Well the best I can guess is that he was both showing off and warning us to stay out of his business from now on. He’s never had help before when we’ve had to deal with him but now he does,” Private grunted.

“He’s never needed help before,” Foxy grumbled and folded her front legs, her wings rose a little in irritation.

“Then I think our best option right now is to try and get out of Manehattan as quickly as possible,” Time Turner suggested. “Derpy and I can take a train to Canterlot and take a late night train from there to Ponyville. But there should still be trains going regularly to Fillydelphia for you three.”

“But Barricade must still be sweeping the neighborhood for you five,” Tango pointed out.

“No, just us three, it’s us he wants. I’m positive he would just have let Derpy and Turner go after he was done messing with them,” Dew said and rose up and so did Foxy and Private.

“We’ll head off first and hopefully we’ll draw any searchers off until we can reach the train station, if Barricade sees us escape he’ll probably call his lackeys off, leaving a free route for Derpy and Turner,” she then explained.

Derpy was hesitant to agree with this plan, she looked at Turner who wasn’t so sure either. But the three ponies of Fillydelphia were already saying their goodbyes. So Derpy just stood up to hug Dew and Foxy and thanked them for their help. She would have hugged Private but the maroon mare stopped her, apparently the Unicorn did not do hugs, unless it was Dew.

“I swear they are both in denial,” Foxy whispered to her with a giggle then waggled her eyebrows. “Sound familiar?”

Derpy’s face flushed red as she realized the jab aimed at her but didn’t get a chance to respond. Foxy and her friends were already heading out, Tango followed them to see them away. That left her alone in the living room with Time Turner.

“Soo… this was uh… different,” she said and sat down in the couch now that it wasn’t occupied. “I hope they will be okay.”

“Yeah,” Time Turner nodded, he had actually been close enough to overhear Foxy’s whisper.

“Thanks for standing up for me. Don’t mind what that jerk said, it was really sweet,” the mare said and smiled warmly. Turner cleared his throat as he remembered just what he had done afterwards.

“Yeah um… I could have lived without decking him, Earth Pony or not, I’m pretty sure he could toss me off the tallest building in Manehattan without breaking a sweat,” he chuckled nervously.

“Then I would be there to catch you,” Derpy declared and giggled when seeing the stunned look on Time Turner, it was though only momentary as his expression eased and the stallion chuckled.

“Derpy… he was not right about my intentions… I wasn’t hoping to impress you or anything,” the clock smith said, gritting his teeth a little as he remembered Barricade’s words. He sighed, took a deep breath and let it out slowly to calm down.

“I just couldn’t stand there and let that bully torment you. He’s done enough already and he had no right to treat you like this. I just… thought I could shut him up, I expected no reward. I respect you far too much Derpy to ever consider such things. I love you and expect nothing from you…” Time Turner froze when he realized what he just said.

Derpy gasped when hearing Turner’s confession. The stallion covered his face with his hooves, feeling really embarrassed. The mare was at loss of words and could only stare at him. She wasn’t even sure what to think, this wasn’t something she had ever dared to even hope and there it was.

“You… love me?” Derpy finally whispered unsure, she had a strange urge to wrap her wings around her head to hide.

Turner dropped his hooves back down to the stool. Then he slowly looked at Derpy, feeling a little guilty and it showed on his face. The clock smith opened his mouth to say something, hesitated and then gave a really long sigh and hung his head.

“Y-yes… I love you Derpy… I just always saw you fly past the clock tower in the mornings and the more you did the more I liked it. For me it was like you were this beautiful gray angel with golden mane and tail bringing in the morning. I kept looking forward to see you when you brought the mail and I always admired your loving and happy nature and what strong mare you were to both foster two fillies and raise your own. Just seeing you happy makes me happy. Sorry… I’m sounding creepy now aren’t I?” Time Turner cringed, looked away and expected a verbal smack down.

Nothing happened and the clock smith dared himself to glance towards Derpy. She was not looking angry, or creeped out. She was trying to hold back giggles, both hooves were on her muzzle and the occasional ‘hihi’ escaped from her lips. Turner wasn’t sure what to think right now. The mare finally managed to calm herself down and removed her hooves from her mouth.

“No you didn’t sound creepy, you sounded really sweet,” she said was smiling. “You really think I look like an angel with a golden mane?”

“Yeaaah?” Turner still wasn’t sure what to think, Derpy was not behaving as he expected.

It was Derpy’s turn to become nervous, she didn’t have Turner’s excuse of accidentally confessing her feelings. Now that she knew how he felt about her, it seemed almost logical and appropriate that she return the favor. But the words just twisted inside her mouth and refused to come out.

“I… uh… Time… I… ah…” The mare entered another giggle fit.

“What? I know I thoroughly embarrassed myself,” Turner said and then it registered. “Wait you used my first name.”

“You I too love… I mean I love you too,” Derpy squeaked between the giggles.

Time Turner’s jaw slowly sunk towards the floor. He never expected to hear that in million years. Now he just stared at Derpy who had finally stopped giggling again and watched him with a nervous smile.

“You’re the sweetest stallion I have ever known. Always ready to help around town, you’re so kind and generous. I always look forward to deliver the mail to you… though I got a little confused once, there was this one stallion passing through town who kinda looked like you but he said he wasn’t you… but that’s okay he didn’t mind and told me you were still in your shop…anyway, you’re also one of the few who never made fun of my eyes or my clumsiness and… wow Carrot Top is right, I do ramble.” Derpy grinned innocently.

“Well… that’s that, um so what do we do? Hug? Kiss?” Turner realized suddenly he had absolutely no idea what to do, he never even thought he would reach this point ever.

“Oh… uh, I hope you don’t mind if we don’t kiss. Meeting Barricade again and how he talked to me… it brought up lots of unpleasant memories, kind of put me off kissing right now,” Derpy cringed and smiled apologetically.

“It’s fine, it’s fine,” Turner quickly assured her. “I just I never really thought I would… so I really don’t know… sorry we are still in Manehattan; we probably should consider the next step when we get out of here.”

“He treated you pretty rotten didn’t he?” he then asked quietly.

“He is very convincing, especially if he knows your weak points. When we met, I wasn’t exactly as confident as I am now and he played all my insecurities against me and yet… somehow managed to make me think he loved me.” The mare closed her eyes, her voice lowered into a faint whisper. “And I believed him. I’m not sure how I could have gotten out of the relationship if he hadn’t left when Dinky was born.”

Derpy opened her eyes again, she opened her mouth to say something more but then frowned. Something suddenly occurred to her. Turner waited patiently though part of him was wondering were Tango was, he hadn’t returned yet since escorting the other three ponies out.

“Now that I think about it, before that, before he came to Ponyville, Foxy said he was dating her. He didn’t leave Foxy because she had a foal, Private chased him away and Barricade didn’t really leave the house that often… did he come to Ponyville to sulk and just grabbed me as some sort of a consolation mare… ugh now I feel even worse.” The mare shuddered.

“Derpy… I think it’s time to leave, Tango isn’t back.” Turner was staring the living room door.

“Oh no…. you don’t think.” Derpy gasped fearing the worst. However, the former officer suddenly came walking in and looked to be in a hurry.

“Guys, I have bad news. I went out to see if the coast was clear for you, it isn’t. Barricade is only a block away with his gang, he has not stopped searching which means if the others got away he didn’t see them leave Manehattan… or worse,” Tango told them gravely.

“What do we do? What do we do?” the mare asked and was starting to panic, Turner wasn’t doing much better.

“We need to get you two out of here and quickly. Barricade will come in here when he reaches this building,” former police pony told them.

“I’m really starting to seriously dislike that pony,” Turner cringed and jumped down from the stool and Derpy climbed down from the couch.

They started to leave but the way out of the living room was blocked by a dark gray Unicorn. Tango blinked and Turner and Derpy almost shrieked but then noticed the book on the pony’s flank and his eyes were blue. That wasn’t Barricade.

“Private?” Turner was very confused.

“W-why are you back? Where are Dew and Foxy?” Derpy asked uncertain.

“I told them to fly to Fillydelphia, it’s quicker and easier for them,” the Unicorn muttered.

“And you are here because?” Tango arched his brow.

“Settle the score with my brother,” Private snorted and his expression became dark.

End chapter 12

Author's Note:

I was a bit unsure if Tango should be on probation or parole. However, when I looked it up, parole didn't sound right to me so I decided on probation. I realize that in the real world the convict can't probably request to serve the probation on a certain location but I've somehow always pictured the Equestrian justice system to be fairly lenient at least in regards to what constitutes as normal crimes.