…James is a git. A complete and total git. I don’t care that he hasn’t hit puberty yet. He tried to give us a complete talk around, sending us around on busy work to help him out rather than let us ask about the girls’ order. I was more than little annoyed after he sent us to pick up a memory card for the camera when he very easily could have walked there. Finally, we were able to ask him about the pony race order.
And he got all indignant! He didn’t want to risk the loss to his business! Yes, because it would compete when he didn’t even loan ponies out to the tourists to ride! But Savvy saw through him and manipulated him a little. Good, because I don’t know what I would have said. (Evening wished he’d had something to leave on his shoes anyway.) We ran his race track, which was basically a scenic ride around the fort, and he still wasn’t going to behave himself. Finally, he agreed if we took pictures of the remaining ponies for more postcards.
He does know that some horses don’t like cameras, right?
Thankfully, Savvy and I were able to explain what was going on to the remaining four ponies on the barge. If anything, those four seemed thrilled to be the centerpiece of some photos. I hope they find homes soon, I can’t imagine they like being on that barge overly much. When we came back, the little git said that he had already sent the delivery down to where they were having the race, and wasn’t he just oh so sweet for doing it? Oh, I had to bite my tongue rather than tell him what I actually thought of him. Hopefully there is some good in him, but his greed is going to get him in trouble, mark my words.
Penny, at least, was thrilled that their order had finally arrived. She told us where the race was being held, and that she would meet us there. I showed Savvy the beach since we were done there again, and I definitely think we’re going to be paying it a visit soon. And then she pointed out that it would be silly to help with a pony race if we weren’t on ponies ourselves, so we called Jenna again for a pick up. I flushed a little at her teasing about being eager to try out our new mounts. I did want to, but I didn’t want Evening to feel neglected.
Well, he was determined to feel that way. He was deep in the sulks when I put him back in his stall, and wasn’t having any of my apologies. I had to give up when Jenna found us some tack to borrow for the ponies so we could leave. Bright tried to perk me up, and flounced on our way out of the stables, making me giggle. Pony Point, as Penny called it, was behind the tomb where we had mined the day before (SHUDDER!), but didn’t really have a direct path to it, rather just being on the beach, and how you got there was up to you (since it looked like it went all the way back to the fort). Savvy and I had to try so hard not to laugh at these poor ponies. I’m not sure if it was because of their long time on the barge, their short legs, or a bit of both, but they were so slow compared to our Jorvik Warmbloods. Bright kept flicking his feet, not sure what to think of the leg wraps I had put on him. He’ll adjust, and he seemed to like the colors. Maybe I’ll get him the gear that matches…
The sisters had beaten us there, and had more work for us to do, of course. Bright was perfectly eager to help, though, and we got the jumps set up. I think Penny and Polly were busy enough clearing the beach and other areas of the track. Again, we were told we didn’t have to be able to jump. I admittedly huffed. I know how to jump already, but they are quite insistent that I need a lesson. But they keep us so busy with errands, when am I supposed to find time for one? Ugh. Savvy seemed relieved, though, and I don’t think Bright would have cared either way.
Well, we had just started running the track, and the very first jump we reach goes down with a clatter. We’d barely even looked at it! Polly and Peggy were just heartbroken. They’d been working so hard and fought against James to get it going at all… That seemed to set off suspicious bells with everybody. We agreed to go talk to James about the jumps falling about so easily.
Lo and behold, the little prat was holding his stomach and seemed to be having an awful time of it. Savvy served as the verbal instigator, so I just looked down my nose at him like the Headmistress sometimes does. He cracked like an egg, and swore he’d make it right. But we’d have to come back tomorrow.
Stalling, much? I told you, he’s a git.
By now, it was past time for us to be heading back to Moorland. I don’t know about Savvy, but I had skipped lunch and I was starving. But during all our running around yesterday, I had noticed another track next to the Bobcat Girls. It looked like it was polebending. I had read about it, and it was definitely the sort of thing that the ponies would be perfect for. So we trotted over to talk to the race master. At first, I couldn’t see his face because of his hat, but then he looked up and…
I think I turned as red as my hair. I know my heart skipped a beat. I quickly looked down at Bright’s mane rather than look at him and hid behind Savvy. It isn’t fair, diary. Not in the least. I go how long at school with never a blink at a boy, no interest at all in getting to know one, and then I come here, and…
Well. He looked flustered too, though no where near what I felt. I would look up and see him glancing at me too as he explained polebending, mostly to Savvy but I listened too. Reading about the pattern and seeing it was something else. She let me go first, getting me away from the boy–Josh, he said his name was. It definitely took some dexterity to go between the poles. I stayed at a trot rather than try to run through them. Bright thought it was a fun game, and thank goodness he was smart. I was too out of it to be much use.
Seriously. Not fair.
It was Savvy’s turn next, and I fidgeted, not sure what to do with myself now that I was quasi-alone with him. He didn’t seem to know either. He asked me for my name, and I felt like my tongue was swollen. I managed to squeak out my real name rather than just the nickname that I had given Savvy and the others the last two days. He said my first name, and oh, he made it sound so beautiful…
Savvy was finished soon after he asked, and it was time for us to go back to the stable. She kept asking me what was wrong, and I didn’t know how to tell her. Or what to tell her. Or if I could tell her. She seems to be the decent sort, but I just don’t know if I trust her enough to tell her about this new feeling.
We were putting the horses and ponies up for the night when Mr. Moorland approached us. He’d apparently noticed how well we were getting along with our loaner horses, who ended up belonging to the same people. Apparently they’d moved away and weren’t going to be back for a long time. But they wanted their horses to be loved, so they were willing to sell them to us for 300 shillings. Which is almost pennies compared to how much Bright cost me, so I know they were serious about just wanting the horses cared for. Since I was already in for a pence with Bright, I figured I might as well go in for a pound. I gladly handed over the money.
Mr. Moorland was all smiles as he gave us the packets of papers to sign and keep copies of. Then as I was flipping through Evening’s paperwork, I saw that he had slipped the same amount we had just paid back in among the papers! I froze in surprise, so I missed my chance to bring it to his attention, and he was gone before Savvy noticed and could say anything.
Neither of us are really sure what he’s up to, but it certainly does not bode well for the future.
But enough dark thoughts! I own Evening and Bright now! I’m not sure how the logistics are going to work, but I can’t really find it in in me to care. I’ll have to write Mummy and Daddy about it and just stay strong about keeping them. Because they both need me, and I think I might need them too.
Money: 3500 SC, 1217 JS
Have a question for Misty about her experiences at Moorland or before? Ask her over at Ask Mountain Song over on tumblr.