April 6, 20xx
My dreams were good ones, though I can’t recall them very well now that I’m awake. I just know I woke up smiling, which was nice. I waited for the alarm this morning before leaving the safety of the covers. This time, I left my music on a much softer volume. It seemed to upset Savvy less. She at least waited for me to finish in the bathroom first (thank goodness, I almost had to curl all my hair to get it to behave). I grabbed the green jacket and the ugly brown pants to wear today, and while I was changing, the music changed to “Lightning” by the Wanted.
And I just couldn’t help but think about yesterday and Josh. The butterflies came back to my stomach, and I felt my cheeks grow flush. Before I knew it, I was twirling around the room in my stocking feet. I didn’t even realize I was dancing until Savvy came out of the bathroom and just…stared. I squeaked and quickly sat down at the vanity to pull on my boots, refusing to look her in the eye in embarrassment.
Breakfast was a biscuit with jam and some milk (I had too much energy to risk tea this morning, it would make me jittery). Savvy wasn’t particularly happy with me over it. Milk has protein in it! I grumbled all the way to the stable. But seeing Evening’s head over his stall door and Bright trying his hardest to do the same helped cheer me up. We started to take care of them, and I was putting Bright’s leg wraps on (much to his pouting) when Savvy said it would be a good idea to finish at Pony Point. I stood up and brushed my hair over my shoulder to nod when Evening reached over the stall partition. He got a mouthful and pulled, like a school boy teasing a girl.
I had enough.
Whirling around, I bopped him on the nose and when he jerked back, startled, I put my hands on my hips and glared him down. “I know you have better manners than that!” I told him. “You showed them when I first arrived.” And I proceeded to wag my finger at him. Bright was meant to be his friend and companion, not a competitor for my attention. Really, the pony wasn’t suited for more than quick jaunts around the immediate area and the more dexterous games. I would primarily be on Evening once we got things squared away at Pony Point, and he had to be a gentleman about it.
Well, he hung his head and looked properly ashamed of himself. I softened once I was sure that he was going to start acting better from now on. We hugged, and when Bright stuck his nose in, Evening didn’t bite or anything, just shared a few breaths with the little pony.
Once we were finished, I remembered that Savvy didn’t have a clue of what I felt around horses. I quickly looked around the stalls to the other side of the stable hall. Luckily, she was busy with Heart and didn’t notice what I was up to. Or if she did notice, she didn’t say anything about it. Lawrence had always said not to tell people about my way with horses, that most people wouldn’t understand it. He always looked out for me, so I have to believe him. Right?
I saw no reason for us to wear the ponies out going down to Pony Point and then asking them to come back to Moorland for a race. And…well, I might have had an ulterior motive. I was maintaining my composure rather well until Josh said good morning. Then I turned into a radish when he said my name in that drawl. Oh, I may have issues with my name on a good day, but when he says it, it all just goes away. I wish I could tell him that! But no, I can’t manage to do more than squeak. Ugh. Savvy shoved me off to the course, and this time I actually focused at it. Bright could tell the difference, and got a little over eager with the turns at the end. I almost had a close encounter with the cactus.
Then it was Savvy’s turn. And I was left alone with Josh. Eep. I didn’t know what to say, or what to do with myself. He didn’t say or do anything, he was watching Savvy race.
And Bright proved that he is a little too plucky, just like Merrylegs. He shoved his head into Josh’s shoulder before I could pull back on the reins and stop him. Oh, thank goodness Josh just laughed and scratched my little mischief maker under the chin. He looked up at me and asked me if I was enjoying Moorland so far. I at least managed to nod and smile. His ears turned red, and he smiled back at me, making my heart jump up to my throat. His eyes are actually brown, diary, and so warm. Like dark chocolate, melted and sweet but with richness and depth.
Savvy finished the track and came up to Josh right then.
I pouted a little as we rode away. I had almost worked up enough courage to speak to him! (Okay, no I hadn’t. But I could have!) I didn’t have too long to sulk, though. There was a bus outside of Fort Pinta with a sign, and first thing Savvy asked James about was where it went. And he said it was to the Jorvik City shopping plaza. Also known as a mall.
A mall. Oh no, I about turned green right then and there. Savvy, of course, was elated. I had to put my foot down and say no. We had too much left to do today to have time for a shopping trip. Maybe on a day where we knew there was no fuss going on, we could go. Maybe.
Well, James was at least pretty blase about it. He had us run around and doing more of the little busy work things before he would talk about the race. And oh, that little prat! He shoved the order over the cliff. Oh, he deserved such a spanking if he was a little bit younger, and if he were a little older, I would set the local constables on him. As it was, I was only able to give him one of Lawrence’s old sayings. “A guilty conscience needs no accuser.” His stomach ache seemed to be the only deterrent he needed. Even when the little git started to talk about his own pony race. A glare from Savvy and I and his stomach acting up quickly nipped that in the bud.
Savvy’s Star felt the need to sneeze in his face. I tugged on Bright’s reins in a subtle warning that I wouldn’t tolerate such manners. It would be rude. He shook his head in response. Apparently he had some boundaries.
The sisters were excited. James had brought down their new order, and even helped set it up. Polly insisted that we try the complete race, and Bright almost took off without me! He had so much fun scrambling up and down the beach, though finding ways around the jumps got a little tricky in places. I am so ready for that jumping lesson, seriously. I am about at wit’s end.
We called for a pick up, and Jenna managed to find us down at the point. She was very interested in the race, and promised to tell other campers about it so if they had ponies, they could try it. I wish the girls the best of luck with their race, I’m sure Bright will drag me down here some too.
We got the ponies settled in their stalls again, and while we were tacking Evening and Heart, Mr. Moorland found us. He wanted us to take copies of the deed to the nearby village and give them to the local councilman, Gilbert. He also wanted us to spend time around the village and become familiar with it. I can’t help but wonder why. Aren’t we going to be joining the other campers soon? We surely aren’t going to be running around on our own all summer…