Love Like This *On Hold*

By the title you probably thought "Oh, a love story." But this isn't a love story between two people. This is a love story between a girl and her horse.

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8. Chapter 8

 


"Oh, no," I breath. "Stacy!?" She rushes in.

 "What's the matter?"

 "He's coughing."

 "He wasn't earlier. That's not good." She began to check him over, pressing lightly at his windpipe.

 "It could be the dust."

 "What?"

 "The dust. I can give him a rug and put him in the field. He might graze, too."

 "You're perfect for him." I blush slightly at her compliment. I grab Spark's rug and throw it over his back, being careful with the belly straps. He doesn't move at all. I sigh. The poor boy.

 I go to Spark and climb onto her back. She snorts and begins to graze. I plait little bits of her mane, thinking. I got a letter from the boarding school.

 I don't know which competition to go into. The dressage, cross country, showjumping or one-day event. I'll let Spark decide. Whatever she seems the happiest doing, that's what I'll choose. But, if she's happy doing all of them, I'll do the three day event.

 I love jumping. I get such a thrill from it. So does Spark. She flies over the jumps, her ears perked and her eyes bright. When we were getting new ground in the arena, I rode her in the field. More than once, I saw her leaping over the jumps if I didn't knock them.

 I slide down off her and begin to groom the gelding. After a while, he responds. He lifts his head a little and looks at me. I smile and stroke his neck. Then it hits me. I used remedies with Spark. Maybe they'd work with him too?

 I grab some rescue remedy and lavender oil from the feed room. I hold out my hand. He licks the three drops of rescue remedy off, making me smile. I set up a bucket in the corner. He probably won't have the energy to raise his head high enough to get to the trough. After placing the half-full bucket in a tyre.

 I begin to massage the diluted lavender oil into his coat. He closes his eyes and his breathing becomes deep. I soon realise that he's asleep. I give him a quick pat before slipping out and going back to Spark.

 "What do you want to do for the competition, huh, girl?" she snorts almost as if she's answering me. I smile and press my cheek against her warm neck. "I love you, Spark." I place a kiss on her neck and go inside.

 "The competition's in two months, Andrea. Do you know what category you're entering?"

 "Probably the event."

 "Event?"

 "Dressage, cross country and show jumping in one day. The person with the lowest points wins."

 "Don't you have to learn a dressage test, though?"

 "Usually, they tell you two weeks before the competition." She serves dinner silently. It's already seven o'clock and Dad's not home. I ask where he is and Mam shrugs, a frown etched across her face.

 At eight I decide to call his office. "I'm sorry, Andrea, your father left over en hour ago."

 I try to call Dad, but he isn't picking up. I explain the situation to Mam and she immediately panics. Picking up the phone, she dials the emergency number.

 I open the door and Spark looks over. When she sees me, she whinnies and breaks into a high-stepping trot. By the time I get to the field, she's put her head over the fence and is snorting at me. Her ears are back and she looks worried.

 "What's up, baby?" I coo, stroking her face. She turns away from me and paws the ground. Tears spring to my eyes; she hasn't been like this since I first got her.

 I hear a scream from inside the house and Spark rises into a rear, her front hooves thrashing at the air. Panic stricken, I run into the house.

 Mam's on the ground, tears creating a puddle on the floor. She has her arms wrapped around her knees. "Your Dad..." she whispers. "He's dead."

 A/N:

 Any names for the gelding?? :)

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