Girls Horse Club Blog

The Lost Get Found

Published by • Feb 1st, 2011 • Category: Critique Me!, Fiction

THE LOST GET FOUND is a submission for Critique Me!, an event where Girls Horse Club writers are inviting readers to critique their stories and poems with praise and/or constructive advice intended to help build confidence and improve writing/storytelling skills. Thanks in advance for your thoughtful insight!

by Zanzibar The Great, age 16

“Audrey, sometimes I just want to believe you’re devoid of all emotions!” Cheney Davis snapped, jerking the reins of the spindle-legged Thoroughbred away from her elder sister. The younger girl stormed off before pivoting hard on her heel, glaring at Audrey. “I swear, ever since Vigilante died you’ve had a dumb excuse for your attitude. For once, just get over it!”

Another argument had risen among the two siblings after a disastrous work-out at the racetrack; it had been a kerfuffle caused by Audrey’s rash decisions. Cheney and her mount had been galloping beside Audrey’s Thoroughbred, Cheney’s horse nearly stumbling due to Audrey’s reckless behavior.

Swallowing a lump in her throat, eighteen-year-old Audrey Davis plumped down heavy-hearted upon a large bale of hay. She blinked rapidly, trying to flush back the burning sensation of tears. For the first time in a while, she wanted to break down and wail on the spot. Since the previous May, nearly four months ago, Audrey had done so much to hoist her pride and veil her true emotions of fervent sorrow.

The words from her fifteen-year-old sister were the bitter truth. Audrey’s attitude had been haughty and intolerant. One small thing set her off in a torrent of snide comments and tart remarks. Just because of a haunting memory lodged deep within the girl’s cranium.

Audrey slammed her face into a cupped hand, soft tears streaming freely onto her cheeks. Choking down a sob, Audrey implored herself to gather her pride and cease this flicker of weakness. She believed that no one knew she was in a state of frailty and that if someone caught sight of her tear-stained face, they’d know immediately her problem. If only she could conquer this grief and look for the newer light of tomorrow.

Vigilante, though, had left a gaping hole in her heart. After the tragic Kentucky Derby last May, which ended in an epic disaster resulting in the loss of the race and of Vigil’s precious life, Audrey had grown frigid. She thrust herself into a strenuous work schedule, pursuing the belief that by overworking her mind she would soon be too absorbed in her occupation to remember Vigilante or the accident. Eventually, all of this would blow right over, and she could continue with her dreams of being a professional jockey.

To her right, a stomp and snort announced the involuntary accompaniment of one of the horses stabled in the backside of Churchill Downs—the same track where Vigil had been put-down and buried.

Glancing through tear-splotched eyes, Audrey saw it was Treble, the stubborn show-boat of the barn. Treble had come to Dustin Cavare’s barn just two weeks ago, but Audrey hadn’t taken much notice to the dark bay colt due to her muddled mind. It didn’t help that Audrey spent her time sparingly here. Mr. Cavare had housed Vigilante and trained the spirited filly here, and Audrey couldn’t stand being here without the presence of her beloved chestnut horse.

Treble lifted his upper lip at Audrey, leaning against the nylon webbing across the stall doorway and lurching to nip at the girl. Audrey tilted her torso to evade the high-strung horse’s assault and lifted her hand to smack him lightly across the muzzle. Right when she raised her hand, Treble revolted into the dimly-lit stall with an indignant squeal.

“You weird horse,” Audrey muttered, wiping her cheeks dry. At the sound of her creamy voice, Treble returned to the front of his stall and peered over at the girl.

When he realized she was still looking his way, he threw his head up and crested his neck majestically. The leggy colt was now towering over the sitting girl; his nostrils flared delicately and ears flattened against his finely-proportioned skull. Somewhere within her heart of hearts, Audrey secretly admired that Thoroughbred for a fleeting moment. But when her thoughts compared Treble to Vigilante, she coughed and turned away.

He was a fine looking creature, mostly meat and bone. Treble was bulky for a Thoroughbred, perhaps too small to be having the build of a draft horse. Yet, with a potential growth spurt he could end up looking very regal and handsome. He was peeking just over sixteen hands, but within the next few months he could possibly tower over seventeen hands. Treble, for sure, would be a demon to ride.

Audrey reclined backwards so her back rested idly against the hay bale. “Just to think, I get paid to ride devils like you, Treble. At least, those devils are remotely trained. You are just so impatient that you won’t give anyone a chance to properly ride you. If you obeyed, maybe you’d win a race.”

Treble swiveled his black-tipped ears and gave an offended snort. He did not quite comprehend what the human girl spoke, but her tone and expression spoke volumes. She was challenging the will of Treble.

“You remind me of…” Audrey began before her face flushed pale and she closed her eyes tightly. “Vigil. She was equally, no maybe even worse…but we got along. I guess you wouldn’t believe it, big boy, but I was a rebel. I understood her much too well.”

The tone of Audrey’s voice altered. Treble leaned closer and pricked his large, flopping ears with awareness. Although Audrey seemed bipolar, the colt didn’t know better than to question her mental state. Now she was speaking as though Treble was some long-term acquaintance, her voice alleviating to an original, suave tone.

She sighed to herself, looking up at the robust stud with softening eyes. Raking her brain ardently, she tried to recall the things Mr. Cavare had told her. Wistfully, she wished that she had listened to the gaunt man closer rather than let her mournful emotions shut out anything to do with Treble. Audrey remembered one thing, though: he hadn’t been broken or raced under good conditions.

“That stud’s had a rough time, Audrey. His past trainer was a bit gregarious…not cruel, but blunt. Perhaps a bit overboard with Treble here,” Mr. Cavare had spoken gravely, staring off listlessly at the mutinous horse as Treble struck his handler brutally to the ground. “If there is a person more skilled with problem horses…it’d be you, Audrey.”

Audrey had snorted and rolled her eyes. “I have no time to deal with a brute like that, Mr. Cavare. If you ask me, you’re wasting time, money and stall-space for him.”

Now Treble cautiously lowered his head towards Audrey once more, this time in a more peaceful manner. Mischief did not sparkle in his hazel eyes, but instead a warm glower of affability was there. Audrey, still lying down, reached her arm up and touched the velvet-surface of Treble’s muzzle. He took a soft whiff of her sweet scent before lifting his head and blowing softly.

Her gaze fell assiduously down the Thoroughbred’s stark complexion. Sure enough, he showed the signs of a potential runner, given time that he could fit properly into his rapidly-growing bone structure.

Something mortifying caught Audrey’s attention. Upon the big horse’s muzzle was a pinkish streak of flesh, the aftermath of an austere wound. To even the keen eye, one would mistake it for lightening in his dark muzzle, but Audrey had caught glimpses of wounds before on racehorses previous. They were diminutive and slipped under most humans’ radar, but Audrey’s careful green eyes had a sharper sense than most.

Tracing her gaze along Treble’s torso and legs, she could see other, miniature indentions in his glossy pelt where scar tissue replaced the hair follicles. A fresh scar was snagged upon his thorax, appearing to be but a few weeks old. Shocked, but not caught off guard, Audrey realized that the resilient horse’s condition was worse than what she had predicted. He not only paid the price to living through the tattered bearings of a destitute trainer, but the short-temper of a man who lived on every dollar his horses made on the track.

“Poor creature,” Audrey whispered, sitting up and turning her body towards Treble. He flattened his ears in disapproval of her sudden movements, but Audrey ignored his tense posture.

In her mind, Audrey could nearly imagine the crimson rivulets of blood seeping from the harsh wounds. Her eyes fell downcast and she caught sight of a gruesome scar; from his fetlock down on his left leg was nothing but scarred flesh. Before, Audrey had seen this on a horse that had been dragged relentlessly from the hind legs by a truck. The rope that had bound that horse to the automobile stripped one of his fetlocks of hair and flesh.

She dared not to wonder how Treble had received this wound.

The ankle was bare of hair and only a mottled amount of gray skin was there. The wound was long-healed, but the mental effects were a brand in the young horse’s mind.

“Dear God,” Audrey breathed, her eyes feeling insecure. If her pride had not interfered, Audrey would’ve begun a crying session all over again.

Treble lowered his neck, his eyelids fluttered close with mental strain. It seemed that he knew what Audrey was gaping at. A flood of memories tore inexorably at the colt, the physical pain almost returning to his flesh. He laced his ears back submissively, turning his face away from Audrey and retreating into the shadows of his stall. As though the horse blamed himself for all the agony he had gone through, Treble retreated from prying eyes.

Wishing that she might be able to spend a few moments longer with Treble, Audrey suddenly became conscious of the time. Glancing at her cell phone, she realized she must go rendezvous with another big trainer sanctioned at Churchill Downs and ride a few of his horses in their morning workouts.

Passing Treble a sympathetic glance, she captured the shadowed sight of the colt before trudging out of the stable yard.

***

A week later, Audrey sat in the jockeys’ room of Keeneland Racetrack in Lexington, Kentucky. With the opening of the serene track, the young jockey had packed up for the meet and would be renting a room in an apartment owned by one of her relatives. The short but prestigious meet would congregate some of the top horses in the country who came to capture high prizes at the autumn meet.

She tightened her chin strap and was reaching for her riding crop, wondering of the race to come. According to her agent, she was riding one of Dustin Cavare’s horses. It had been a protracted spell since she had gotten into the saddle of Mr. Cavare’s equines. Ever since Vigil’s death, she had detached herself from the man considerably. She worked sparingly at his stables and was riding for him less frequently. In addition, more famous trainers had also thrown horses her way.

“We’ll have a favorite, then,” Audrey murmured, knowing that the betting public respected Mr. Cavare’s proficient work with Thoroughbred racehorses.

When summoned, Audrey filed out of the jockeys’ room along with nine other jockeys who would be mounting up for the day’s fifth race. They poked fun at Audrey for only a moment, as they had for the last two years she had been a jockey. The games of bantering and discourteous jokes had become tedious now that Audrey had matured and could ward them off with sharp comments.

As they immerged into the paddock, she caught sight of Mr. Cavare and walked straight for him. Around them, ten horses pranced and paraded around the walking ring, coats glistening like gems underneath the fall sunshine. She tipped her helmet to the man, greeting him only briefly before searching for his horse. Normally, she would’ve picked out a horse with wraps on all four legs and a shadow roll of some sort. Mr. Cavare was notorious for being extremely cautious in protecting his horses.

“Who am I riding?” Audrey questioned, staring at a muscular gray. His attire was correct for a horse possibly trained by the man, but the looks had been deceiving.

“Him,” Mr. Cavare pointed at. It was a bay horse, throwing back his head and eyeing the crowd around the walking ring. He drew up his legs in dressage-movements, his eyes widening as he caught sight of someone in a bright orange shirt. The colt’s groom was nearly embracing the lead rope, his face dour as he pivoted the colt ninety degrees to continue a straight echelon around the paddock.

Audrey squinted into the sun. “He’s pretty. Who is he?”

Mr. Cavare pursed his lips. “An Alaskan Legend colt…you remember Alaskan Legend, right?”

Nodding, she felt a sudden, frigid prickle up her spine. Alaskan Legend had been the sire of Vigilante. Although his career was brief, he had raked up six sprinting races in one year before being retired. His speed and prowess had been reflected to Vigilante, who had a mean but prodigious speed. If this horse had half the talent of Alaskan Legend, he would be well off.

“Really?” Audrey muttered, her eyes sparkling like an emerald fire. “He’s good looking. He’s three-years-old, right? That would place him in the same crop as…her…””

The carriage of the colt was refined and conclusive, muscles rippling underneath a polished coat. He was a dark fellow, appearing a deep chocolate brown with golden around his muzzle and flanks. Before long, he was hopping on his hooves like a child trying to step over rain puddles. Bobbing along, the groom spoke something in haughty Spanish, his eyes narrowed with subdued rage.

In a way, he was Vigilante’s brother. Although they did not share the same dam, he still had thirty-two of the exact same chromosomes as Vigilante. He looked like Alaskan Legend, too, just like Audrey’s beloved filly had. Yet, this colt was a bit too brawny for his short build. But he’d have a year or two where he’d grow a few inches and fill into his bones.

“That’s Treble, Audrey,” Mr. Cavare spoke out, his voice interrupted by some whistles as a colt with a fan club was trotting by a group of spectators.

At first, she did not correctly perceive the colt’s name. But once she deciphered it, her heart skipped a beat and her tan face flushed white. She felt her lips quiver and she turned away, pretending to take a glance at the competition. Audrey balled her hands into firm fists, remembering her encounter with the thickset colt at Churchill Downs last week. Since then, she had kept him close to her heart and prayed that he was doing well.

“Th-that’s Treble?” Audrey stammered, her whole body shivering now. She hadn’t expected that Mr. Cavare would’ve put her up on that colt. He was demonic, according to his last jockey, Javier Rosario, who was dumped on the backstretch in the colt’s last race nearly two months ago.

Involuntarily, Audrey looked at the colt’s fetlock. Sure enough, the horse had the bare fetlock from the unknown wound. The injury made Audrey shutter, remembering how hideous it had looked up-close last week. This was the same horse she met at Churchill Downs.

“He’s been training well and I know we can’t begin to seek more remedies until with diagnose further.” Mr. Cavare rested his calloused hand upon the youthful jockey’s shoulder, realizing that this had come as a shock to her. Knowing that the abused colt was derived from the same sire as Vigilante had sent her into a stunned state.

Audrey opened her mouth to protest or perhaps elude the race, but something stopped her. The stud had pranced by her and his brown eyes fixated on her, as though he had been searching for her all along. Her body froze and she felt her heart skip a beat. Something within her whispered softly, He needs you Audrey, as much as you need him.

They brought the horses around a final time and the loudspeaker crackled “Riders up!” Mr. Cavare boosted the short girl into the saddle and gave a heartening pat on the leg, as thought to send her mute courage. Trembling, Audrey gathered the reins and chewed frantically on her lower lip. She was making a brief friendship with Treble and this swift occurrence had to prove wonders to the young woman. If Treble did terrible, she would immediately label that she was no use to helping him.

Treble arched his crested neck and cocked his head to gaze at the young girl perched in his saddle. Before, his jockeys had picked up the reins, jerked the iron bar in his mouth and cursed at him for fidgeting wildly. Yet, this one was different. She barely moved or took control; instead she was willing forking over her dominance to the Thoroughbred.

Her touch was as soft as a summer breeze. Her scent was of wild flowers, something that dawned a deep emotion from the depths of the colt’s heart. She reminded him of his summer home of foalhood. The days in which he frolicked lightheartedly beside his dam and dreamed of days of championship. In a life ridden with hatred and cruelty from humans, Audrey had reminded him of the few months he was treated kind by humans and the world. With this remembrance, he lightened his muscles.

Audrey felt him loosen up underneath her legs, which dangled out of the stirrups and against his sinewy sides. Reaching over, she coursed her fingers down his neck in praise and felt a smile ebb at her lips.

As they got out onto the track, Audrey’s gaze shifted to one of her fellow jockeys, who was riding the favorite for this race. The favorite colt, which went by the name Sinister Thyme, was strutting like a model on the catwalk. The gray colt was proud and pacific, his muscles rippling regally underneath a polished coat. Sinister Thyme had every dedicated right to be so egotistical, he had five wins prior to today and if he put on a good show today, he could easily advance to higher stakes.

“You’ve never gotten a big chance, huh Treble? They’ve just called you insignificant and cast you aside. If you have even half of the fire that Vigilante carried, you still have a chance for stardom,” Audrey murmured. Treble had perked his ears at the crowd but laced them backwards to catch the girl’s soft conversation.

The caressing and chatting continued listlessly as they parade in front of bettors, handicappers and fans in the grandstands. Today wasn’t a significant stakes day, but everyone was still making the best of this early fall day by entering exotic bets and enjoying the outing. At least if Treble failed, there wouldn’t be a huge public to mock and ignore this horse.

“Oh, ye of little faith,” Audrey chuckled to herself, patting Treble’s neck. Somewhere, her former sense of arrogance goaded and rose to her skin, arrogance that had deteriorated just shortly after Vigil’s death. “Why did you not believe?”

Treble shook his broad head, allowing his billowing forelock to cascade into his eyes. Audrey’s confidence was causing him to relax further. This was vital since they were now lining up at the gate, waiting to be loaded and for the race to be off.

“C’mon, Treble. You can do this,” Audrey whispered as they began to load into the gate. She binded her fingers into his soft, ebony mane and rested her other hand on his bony withers. Without thinking, she murmured, “I love you, big boy.”

Treble’s ears flicked backward and lay parallel to his skull. The soft words in which Audrey had spoken did no mean anything to him, but the tone and panic in which she used them made wonders. Perhaps, just perhaps, this human did understand the agony in which he had been forced through.

The final gate clattered shut and Audrey sat forward in the saddle, her lungs contracting in her chest and her heart rapidly picking up its pace. She didn’t know how Treble ran, or if he would at all. She was running a horse decisively on prayers. They had only seven furlongs, or seven-eighths of a mile, to prove that Treble was coming out of his shell. Maybe this was too much or too little of a test for him.

Audrey blinked and in that instant, the gates had swung open. On either side of them, the horses had taken off and cannoned onto the track. Meanwhile, Treble through his head and was posed to rear before Audrey spurred him in the sides and stood up in the stirrups, swatting the reins his way. Treble vaulted out of the gate off his hindlegs, his head bowing as one of his front legs lost footing and he stumbled.

Thrusting her weight up, she dragged on the reins to maintain balance in the horse. Treble sprung up and was off like a shot, but nearly two lengths behind the trailing horse. All in all, they were eight lengths off of the pace-setter. A panicky feeling bubbled in Audrey’s stomach as she evaluated the situation, realizing that starting a race like this could thwart their whole plans. Treble would believe in nothing but bad races.

Treble was panting with anxiety, his eyes flickering wildly with dread. Every time he raced, something bad happened during or after. Beforehand, it was the aftermath of each badly-placed race that made the bay colt fear running. Now, it had become the jostling and stumbles that sent pinpricks of fear into the young horse’s spine.

Sensing his panic-waves, Audrey dropped her left hand on his neck and pat him reassuringly, murmuring softly. Her words were a muddle of supportive words, nursery rhymes and lyrics from her favorite songs. Just the sound of her voice, creamy and sweet, seemed to work a miracle with the ambiguity that was overtaking Treble. Just hearing something other than curses, screams and the prod of the whip satisfied the bay. The one small thing that Treble hadn’t been introduced to was benevolence.

“You’ve never been treated like this…?” Audrey muttered, her eyes widening. She chewed on her lip thoughtfully, steering Treble close to the white rail, an everlasting, ivory snake that blazed alongside them. “That’s a shame.”

Continuing her blank-minded blabber, she kept her lips moving and saying nothing-in-particular, but her mind was sternly focused on the race. There were nine other horses veering around the track finding a perfect place to run. In the front, Sinister Thyme was setting blazing fractions. Meanwhile, Treble was more than nine lengths behind, a thought that made Audrey tremble to the marrow of her bones.

“Treble, you better have afterburners!” Audrey called, her face grim underneath her helmet and goggles. She turned a soft shade of grey, her jaw clenched tightly as she tried to play out what her plan was. It took a few seconds for Audrey to realize that she didn’t have a plan.

Blood roared in her ears as she maneuvered Treble precisely for a slot alongside the rail, containing a breath within her lungs as she clucked her tongue and directed Treble into it. Beside them, a huge bay colt was cruising along like a sailboat in the warm summer wind. Treble shuttered, trying to shy away from the rail and veered for the bay. Audrey dropped her body, looming closer to her colt’s withers. She wanted him to know that she was still there.

Audrey whistled shrilly. “H-eyyy! I know what I’m doing, big guy. Just trust me…I know it sounds impossible, but you just gotta let go this time.”

Reluctantly, Treble stopped making his decisions and let Audrey pick up the bit in his mouth and keep him steady. For his whole life, he had learned that humans only wanted him to do the impossible. When the situations got tough, Treble had made his own resolutions. Sure, the human would curse and kick, upset that Treble had done the opposite of what they had intended, but it was a risk he was willing to take to save himself a few bones.

Ebony mane whipping against her cheeks, Audrey kept watch for spaces along the rail. As they surged into the turn, two horses that had been close to clipping heels swung wide and opened a chasm for Treble. The colt saw the opening and pricked his ears, but it wasn’t until Audrey gave command with the reins did he advance.

“Sinister Thyme just making a run out of it today, he’s got two lengths over second-favorite John’s Irish Pride…” The announcer boomed over the loudspeakers, his voice rattling across the Keeneland grounds. “The longshot, Treble, seems to be making steady progress after a terrible start.”

Over the swift wind battering against her and the din of hooves, Audrey could not hear the man’s race call. Her mind was dead-set on one objective: getting Treble across that finish line without a scratch. Whether or not they took first prize was a different wish.

There was a suddenly difference in Treble. Before, even when he dropped the bit for Audrey, the colt was still poised and waiting for the girl to make one mistake that would send him careening into a mental wall of distrust. But, now, he was relaxed and fluidly storming along the rail, his nostrils dilated with pleasure. Audrey blinked rapidly and shook her head vigorously, believing she was waltzing in some daydream. Never before did she expect Treble to relax.

The mental barrier Treble had built up against humans long ago was diminishing. The love of Audrey was too strong for him to wage war against and the colt wasn’t fighting her momentum. He wanted love and, now, in just a matter of minutes he had discovered it.

“Yes, Treble! Thatta boy! All you needed was a li’l love, eh?” Audrey hooted, her teeth flashing as she pat the colt on the neck.

Rejoice passed over quickly as Audrey took heed of the race. The blithe was still burning passionately within her chest, but she shoveled the thoughts out and gripped the reins tightly.

Hooves flailing over the earth, Treble was picking up momentum and parading to join the first four runners. The face of one of the jockeys was priceless. Diego LaSalle tossed Audrey a horrified expression as he realized that the girl was riding up on the longest-shot in the field. The longshot that was just roaring up along the rail and heading for one horse in particular: Sinister Thyme.

Smirking pompously, Audrey touched her hand to her brow in a salute and just let Treble foxtrot by Diego LaSalle’s horse. A horse who had been nine lengths off of Sinister Thyme in the beginning was now just a couple strides from the burly gray. Treble pricked his ears, taking sight of the vast, open track that lay just ahead of the gray. He wanted to be there, soaring ahead of the other horse.

She laughed for a moment, merry by the fact that Treble had sudden uprooted the dormant urge to run and wind. It was a pity that it took him this long to turn over this leaf, since a horse like Vigilante had discovered the first time she ran on the track. But beggars couldn’t be choosers, Audrey decided and was content that Treble had found it now than never.

The field turned into the homestretch, leaving less than two furlongs for Treble to find his final kick and close in on Sinister Thyme. Audrey shook the reins, letting all tension loose and urging him with insistent but kind words. Her voice barely wafted over the embezzlement of hooves, echoing faintly in the colt’s ears.

Before Audrey could draw another breath, Treble was running along the rail with his head at Sinister Thyme’s shoulder.

Sinister Thyme wasn’t weary or beaten, even though his silvery coat was sleek with sweat and his muzzle frothed with foam. He bobbled slightly, swapping his left lead for his right one. The towering stud was roaring forward with the speed of a leopard, his body raving for victory. His dignity would take a gallant blow if a horse as lowly and scar-ridden as Treble bested him.

“One, two, three, four, Treble can run, do you got more?” Audrey began to call, trying to keep the colt agitated with her calm voice. Her humorous rhyme was boisterous, and Sinister Thyme’s jockey heard every word of her witty call. “Seven, eight, nine, ten, we got power, we will win!”

Both horses were straining against their leather bridles, eyes rolling with white as they lunged forward. In each stride, a different horse had his head in front. Sinister Thyme roared with each gasping breath, his ears restrained firmly against his head. Treble wasn’t in full-out, provoked mode. He hesitated briefly, eying Sinister Thyme as though to make a mockery of the big gray horse.

“C’mon, big boy, enough torture and torment. Let’s get it on with,” Audrey called.

Treble gathered his stride and launched himself off of his hindlegs, his barrel now even with Sinister Thyme’s head. With each earth-trembling stride, Treble was drawing away from the sprinting demon behind him.

For a moment, Audrey’s mind flashed back to the Derby. Right now was when Vigilante’s leg shattered, just as the filly had drawn away and was power-driving for the wire. She anticipated some catastrophic snap, but it did not occur. After a few heartbeats, Audrey realized that this was not the Derby and this was not Vigilante. This was Treble, and he was going to win!

Cloud nine found a place for Audrey’s heart as she took a swift glance at Sinister Thyme, now a good five lengths off. Treble knew he was well clear of competitors but he kept taking giant leaps for the wire, his mind screaming the word “Run!” Although he was still behind the wire, his heart had soared a mile ahead of his body.

In the shadow of the wire, the girl felt tears spill from her eyes and collect at the bottom of her goggles. Treble stormed beyond the wire, fighting to sweep into the turn and keep running laps around the track. Audrey absent-mindedly stood in the saddle, jerking at the reins and sobbing. In her state-of-mind, she had finally completed the Derby that she and Vigil had never finished.

For the first time in a great while, Audrey felt complete. Sure, there was still pain that was stapled into every living fiber of Audrey. She could never fully drop the sorrow of losing Vigilante, but at least she had something to help numb that pain. It came in a form of a little, abused colt that was looking for something he believed didn’t exist: love.

When fate twisted for the two individuals, it had resulted in agony. Yet, fate had played a cruel trick then and now righted itself, sending two starcrossed figures to one another. This result had a happy ending.

And, together, the lost girl and the scarred colt rode triumphantly into the winners’ circle.

6 Nickers »

  1. W.O.W. VERY powerful story. Good job

  2. Zanzibar, you are incredible! I love the broad vocabulary you use, and you really seem to understand how the horse feels. A perfect blend of emotionalism and professionalism. This is amazing, I’m expecting to see this published someday!
    On a side note, I also love the names you use…Vigilante, Treble, Alaskan Legend, Sinister Thyme. Very creative and unusual!

  3. Wow. WOW, your vocabulary was magnificent and the emotions of treble and Audrey flowed out of the text beautifully. You are a great writer, better than some adult writers I’ve seen. Keep at it and I’ll be sure to buy your first book.

  4. If anyone is interested, The Lost Get Found is the sequel to a story I submitted here one GHC in November of 2009. It’s called Shattered, and it’s the events of Audrey and Vigilante. You can find it here: http://www.girlshorseclub.com/blog/shattered/2009/11/29/

    And thanks so much, everyone. You guys make me blush :)

  5. Wow. You pick THE MOST DRAMATIC WORDS THAT FIT THE STORY SOO MUCH! Great work! *pats on back* I couldn’t have done it better myself. By the way, any of you guys read Terri Farley’s “Remember the Colt”?

  6. Isn’t that a song too? Great story!!! :)