|TITLE: A New Horse
AUTHOR: Celesta SunStar
ARCHIVE: go right ahead
RATING: G (There are one or two bad words...)
CATEGORY: Old West - Challenge
MAJOR CHARACTERS: Ezra, Chaucer
DISCLAIMERS: They are not mine darn it, and college students have no money anyway
NOTE: The April 2003 Challenge (the Picture Challenge): offered by KT (Katy) Forget April fools! You will find 4 pictures below. Take a look at all 4 pictures and let 1, 2, 3 or all 4 inspire you. You don't have to be too bound by the details of the picture, all I ask is that the reader be able to tell which picture(s) you chose.
SUMMARY: Ezra meets Chaucer
WARNINGS: it's short, and no one has beta read it, since I wanted it to go away. (Final week of classes is hell.)
A New Horse
Ezra walked slowly down the street, his face and posture not giving away his sense of loss. Hoshi had been a wonderful horse, but she was getting very old, and going west as he wanted to do, would not be good for her health.
The Giafontanas would be good to her.
But that didn't stop it from hurting.
He was still wandering aimlessly an hour later, when a shrill equine scream pierced the air.
Ezra turned to see a rough, unshaven character violently rein in and spur a bedraggled chestnut. The horse, a gelding he noticed absently since he was already moving, screamed again and reared, throwing his rider off in a twisted buck as soon as he hit the ground again.
Ezra was between the man and the horse as the man swore and drew his gun.
"What the hell do you think you're doing mister? I'm going to shoot that goddamn excuse for a horse." Ezra took a quick glance at the man's boots, and his resolve deepened as he saw the rowel spurs catch the light and make them look red. He had never liked spurs, they were clunky, noisy, and made it easy to hurt the horse.
"You will not be abusing this horse any longer." Ezra informed the man coolly. The ice in his voice should have frozen the man, but he wasn't intelligent enough to really understand the threat. He did, however, lower the gun.
"Hey, I paid a good thirty dollars for this horse, and I aim to get my money's worth, even if its only out of hide and hooves."
"Here's fifty, now go."
The man went, pausing only long enough to scoop up the money on the ground.
Ezra watched the man leave and then turned to inspect his new horse.
The chestnut was lathered, with speckles of blood on his flanks where the rowel spurs had cut too deep. But his eyes were clear and though he was clearly nervous, he let Ezra approach slowly, without making any moves to bite or kick.
"That's it... No more spurs, I promise... I nevah use spurs..." Blessing the habit that kept sugar cubes in his pocket, he brought one out as a reward for being able to grasp the bridal without getting bitten. "We'll have to find you a good name..."
After the treat was finished, the horse butted his head against Ezra's chest, bumping against the book he had absently tucked into a pocket earlier.
"You like Chaucer?" Ezra asked his new horse, a flash of humor lightening his eyes and starting a smile that had been absent for hours. The horse almost seemed to nod for a second, before Ezra started leading him to a stable to see to his cuts.
"Then Chaucer you shall be."