Barney had enough grain for Harold, but not enough for Steve. But, it was just that, grain, not flour. Barney recommended we take it up to Will at the Mill on the Hill, say that five times fast, and we could get flour from him. He also had a tidbit of information that made me go chill. Mr. Kemball, the man we ran out of Moorland, was drilling for oil in the Everwind Fields.
I gritted my teeth. Well, we’d just have to run Mr. Kemball out of there too. And we’d keep hounding him, until we ran him right out of Jorvik. I don’t know how we’d do it, but we’d do it. He was going down. No one calls me a little girl and gets away with it.
Will was a pretty decent fellow. He didn’t want to hurt the mice either. Weird people. They are mice. Anyways, while he ground the grain into flour and thought about the mice problem. He encouraged us to try out his race track. And oh my heavens, you didn’t have to be able to jump to run it, but I have got to find some way through all the obstacles that doesn’t have Heart running into poles! Owwww. My head was dizzy when we got back. That hadn’t been easy at all.
But the flour was ready and Will exclaimed that his stinky cheese would simply drive the mice away! So, we thanked him and took our flour and the stinky cheese with us down the hill. Harold was happy to have his flour so much that he gave us a dark blue shirt. That was nice of him. He also had us stay put long enough and gave us the first batch of pizza rolls for lunch. Yum.
And when we got to Steve’s he was curious about the smell and seemed a bit leery about the whole idea. He had us bait the traps and the mice just scurried away from the house and back into the fields where they belonged. He congratulated us, with a jacket, a light blue one. When we were done with that, he also had a race track.
After doing the race, I wanted to poke my head into the sell pen. They were Friesians! I’ve only seen pictures of them! Oh, they were so pretty and so big with long flowing manes and deep black glossy coats. As I was checking the Friesians out, some guy in the paddock assumed I was there to talk to him and enthusiastically greeted me and acted like I should know who he was.
Umm, I didn’t.
He was a self-proclaimed horse expert who said he could give me riding tips. Ohkay. All I had to do for him was run Steve’s Race and show him what I was made of. He promised a reward. Seemed easy enough. At least it would satisfy his ego. So, Heart and I ran the race and maybe we didn’t make the best showing of it but I am not much more than a beginner when it comes to riding. I haven’t jumped in years! In fact, it’s been four solid years since I’ve been on a horse this was my fourth day here and I don’t think I really deserved his remarks. He wanted me to be one with Heart. I worry what is going to happen if I’m more one with Heart. Will she talk to me like Applemack? (Did he really talk to me though? Or was it my imagination?) Heart bridled a little, snorting at him. She didn’t like his remarks either. So, we took the track again and he seemed a bit more mollified on our second go through. Enough he gave us a jacket just like his.
He promised more tips and tricks. I don’t know if I’ll be back to take them. Thank you very much.
Well, Justin was waiting for us near Steve’s farm. Speaking of jumping, he was surprised we hadn’t jumped yet. He had us build a jump and then went through the mechanics of it with us. Misty seemed annoyed over the whole affair. I was just relieved that what he was saying was matching up with what little remained in my memory. Heart seemed okay with it all. When in doubt, I think she wanted me to trust her. I patted her shoulder and told her in a low voice that I would.
Misty took the jump with ease. I was much more nervous. I didn’t have a school club for this! Heart braced herself against my nervousness and did just fine. It was me I was worried about! But I didn’t go flying and Justin encouraged practice and shopping for better gear. I didn’t really like brown either, especially not with Heart’s coat, but it is what we have at the moment. He went over to say hi to Steve and well, it was time to return to Moorland.
All the running around didn’t make me want to ride over there, map or no map. So we called Jenna again. But as we were unloading Heart and Evening off the truck, May dashed over and was bouncing up and down so much I don’t know what had gotten into her.
Reed Kessler had come to Jorvik.
I didn’t know who Reed Kessler was. Misty looked just as, pardon the pun, mystified. But May was so excited and then so devastated that she wasn’t going to be able to get to the Ride House herself and get an autograph. She begged us to go get one for her. Begged. She grabbed onto Heart’s harness and pleaded.
I looked at Misty. She sort of shrugged. So we promised May we’d do it and she squealed and waved us out the stable promising she’d have dinner for us when we came back. That’s when I got a niggling suspicion and checked the map. The winery was past Silverglade Village and the Ride House was behind it. Oh for the love of, I told Jenna to be waiting for our call. She just laughed and seemed to be okay with it.
So, we went up into Nilmer’s Highland and veered towards the castle and the village. I kept my eye on the map because there was an old road that cut over to the winery somewhere. We followed that and it wasn’t at all kept up. That got us to a better road and we went up a hill and around the winery, down a twisty road and down another hill to a huge building that was the ride house. I asked Misty if she knew who Reed was. She didn’t. Apparently, she just keeps track of special horses and not their riders or competitions. That makes a certain amount of sense. The rider might change horses, but the horse doesn’t really change at all. I looked her up on Jorvikpedia. I guess she was the youngest show jumper ever to qualify for the Olympics. She has six competition horses, including one named Cos I Can.
Reed Kessler was there at the ride house. She stated the obvious, that there were a lot of competitions on Jorvik and wanted to know if we competed. I didn’t. Misty did, but I would give it my best try. She promised to give us some tips if we did a show jumping course for her.
Misty did okay. Heart and I kept fumbling. The turns were really tight and I didn’t know where at all to go. It was rather overwhelming. We’d really have to practice to get this better. Reed seemed moderately impressed with Misty. Good, let her take the spotlight for once. Her advice was really vague and I don’t think it helped much. I don’t think Show Jumping is really for me. She gave us each a red show jumping competition jacket like hers. And insisted we didn’t have to thank her since we did the course so well.
Misty did well. I did miserable.
She was pretty happy to give us an autograph then for May before she went back to her training.
We called Jenna again and met her outside. Jenna had to duck in to see if Reed was really there. She came out a little dazzled. But we all headed back out to Moorland. May had our dinner and we had her autograph. She immediately dashed off to put it on her wall in her bedroom. We all laughed. It wasn’t mean spirited laughter.
I was famished and so was Heart. We ate dinner with the horses. Sat on hay bales and stretched our legs out. I was tired. I know Misty was tired. What a weird day. And I’d met a guy, a hot guy. And, I don’t know what to think about that. My life is supposed to be about art! Not boys! Art!
But Derek has dreamy blue eyes and, I’m just being silly.
Hopefully, I’ll be able to stop in and talk to him again tomorrow. Wouldn’t that be nice?
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Have a question you want to ask Savvy about her experiences in Moorland or before? Ask at Ask Mountain Song on tumblr.