ut he said he could give me riding tips if I ran Steve’s track again. That explained what Savvy was up to. I’m always up for some words of improvement. Evening’s head was up, anyway, so back to the race track we went. When we came back, I was more than a little miffed at his so-called advice. I respect instructors, I do. The equestrian team’s coach was always offering critique, to me or any of the other girls. But you are only supposed to give someone one thing to work on at a time! And to become one with Evening? He was already insufferable!
But that got it into his head, so of course Evening wanted to try it again. So around we went, though I was starting to get dizzy from it. That seemed to satisfy Mr. Larsson. He gave us another jacket, exactly like his. It’s cut a bit boxy, but I actually do like it, and it would go with what I think I want to do with Bright until I gather the gumption to buy that sailor dress…
Once Mr. Larsson was done chatting my ear off with more tips and advice (honestly, someone needs to listen to him more often if he’s pouncing on new people like this), Savvy waved me over. Apparently Justin was waiting for us for that long awaited jumping lesson. At last! We had to build the jump ourselves, and then he had to go over the mechanics of it all. I bit my lip to keep from pointing out that if he was going to get that basic, then he shouldn’t have had us build the jump so high. Savvy seemed pretty nervous about it too, so I offered to go first.
Despite going however-long without a regular rider, Evening didn’t give me any trouble over the jump. I pulled to the side and cheered Savvy on. She was a little rusty, but managed quite well. Justin encouraged some practice and shopping for better gear than what the stable had on hand. I could have groaned. But Evening nodded his head in agreement, and I could sort of see why. Brown on his beautiful dapple grey coat… He went to give Steve greetings, and then it was dinner time back at Moorland.
Savvy wasn’t up for riding over there, so we called for a pick-up. We had just gotten the horses unloaded when May came bouncing over, all a flutter.
Reed Kessler had come to Jorvik.
Pity I don’t keep up with riders. I never saw much of a point, since horses and owners changed over a horse’s career, and especially riders. But May was awfully excited about it…and disappointed, since she wasn’t going to get to go herself and get an autograph. She begged, which was moderately distressing. When Savvy looked at me, I just shrugged helplessly. How could we say no to that face?
So we said we’d do it, and May’s smile made it all worth it. She also promised to save supper for us, good. But then Savvy checked her map and discovered where exactly we were going and…needless to say, she was not thrilled and told Jenna to be waiting for us to call. Thankfully, Jenna seems to be a decent sort.
I had to follow Savvy up there. Not because Evening was slower than Heart (Heaven forbid I say that where he can hear it, he’ll get all competitive on me). No, she went tearing down some rabbit trail of a path that I could barely see in the dusk light. Then the road almost doubles back when you reach the winery to get to the actual ride house, not that the turn leading down to it was very clearly marked either. Meanwhile, Savvy was looking Reed up on Jorvikpedia. Olympic jumper, six competition horses… Cos I Can rang a few bells, and I recognized Cylana as the 2013 Horse of the Year in Belgium, along with her other accomplishments.
Well, Miss Kessler was there at the ride house, like expected. She had heard that there were a lot of competitions on Jorvik and asked if we competed. Savvy thankfully did the talking for me, so I didn’t run the risk of sounding like I was bragging. She said she would offer us tips if we did the show jumping course for her, and well, I couldn’t turn down that chance. I might not keep track of riders, but if one of Reed’s caliber was going to offer tips, I definitely needed them.
Evening, I discovered, was not a show jumper. He was eager, poor dear, and wanted to do well at it. But he couldn’t quite understand that you sometimes have to go around some jumps to get to others. He wanted to go straight around the track, taking each jump as it came up. He got rather frustrated with me at times, but I was equally stubborn about completing the track properly. Poor Savvy though almost ended up in a real tangle. I’ll have to help her figure it out, somehow.
Reed was actually a little impressed, though her advice wasn’t exactly helpful either. She gave us each a red competition jacket like hers, and was quite insistent about it. Savvy seemed a little embarrassed about it. I really hope we find a race that she does very well at soon. Lord knows, there are plenty that I’m absolutely rubbish at, so she’ll see soon enough.
Well, she was more than happy to give us an autograph for May. Better her than me, I can’t imagine being besieged for autographs by total strangers… She had to get back to training, though, so we called Jenna for a ride. She had to see Reed for herself, and came out quite star-struck. Honestly, am I the only one who cares about the horses rather than the rider?
May had our dinners waiting, and had even kept them warm for us. The instant she had her hands on her autograph, though, she was off like a firecracker to hang it on the wall of her bedroom. I was somewhat managing a straight face until I saw Jenna’s and Savvy’s faces and then I lost it. We all started laughing, though there wasn’t any cruelty to it.
But dinner smelled amazing, and even Evening was drooping in hunger. I fixed him something to eat (and Bright, who was looking longingly at it), and then settled down with Savvy on the hay bales. Oh, it felt good to stretch my legs out! But I couldn’t help playing with my food a little rather than eat it straight away. My mind was just so busy. I couldn’t stop thinking about all this talk of magic and mysticism. It scared me, a little, but then… Is there a good side to it too that we haven’t seen yet?
And then I would look out the windows and see the grasslands of Moorland and wonder if that was the top of the pole bending course I saw, or where Josh was right that instant… And then chastise myself for being a ninny, mooning over a boy.
Oh, and we’ll see him again. Tomorrow. Maybe I can actually manage to say something this time? But what do you say?! Now I may not be able to fall asleep…
Money: 3500 SC, 2391 JS
Have a question for Misty about her experiences at Moorland or before? Ask her over at Ask Mountain Song over on tumblr.