Thank you to Lulu who got me off my ass!

I suggest listening to the 1994 Black Beauty Soundtrack while reading!

Here's the link to the soundtrack! .com/watch?v=8JCLP647Flg

….

He was not in a barred off stall, covered by curtains and walls as thick as slabs of rough rock, chained down like some monster—though that was precisely what he was. A great big giant beast with oiled black hoof's, simmering red fur, white pearly teeth that snapped and growled like a mad dog, a tail that swished like a serpents tongue and eyes that seemed to belong to the devil himself. But no, no cage for him with iron bars, with chains instead of ropes and a muzzle as long as a mans arm. He was not that exotic. Dangerous yes, but not exotic. He was a mutt if anything else.

And in this world only exotic was deemed worthy enough to protect, to coddle, to keep in pristine condition to sell at a later date for a staggering price that would leave a man twenty years in debt—but he'd have the exotic animal, and to a fool who buys for pleasure and not for need—well, he'll be content with his wallowing debt.

But me? Me? I needed him. I needed that animal—no, that God-like creature. Oh, of course there was pleasure in my motives—the beast was beautiful. He was harsh and witty and damned—he was the capturer of my soul.

How do I know this you might ask? How could I possibly feel such a thing for a Centaur—a common enough horse breed—a high maintenance monster but common none the less?

Because I just did. I could feel him in my mind, see the body of him, the strength of him, the recklessness of him. He danced across my vision with vigor. He was a God—he was the Zodiac of the starred archer in heaven. I could feel it. He may have been worthless to anyone else, but to me, oh to me he was priceless.

Ever since my thin fingers had leafed through the pages of our Sunday newspaper a few days ago, the yellowed paper a bit moist from it's time outside with the spring rains, my thumbs began to shake and I could not think straight through the rest of the week, so fevered I was.

You see I often glance over the faire sections in the newspaper every morning before I have my coffee and toast with butter—a light breakfast, for my father fears I would simply gain a massive stomach ulcer if I so much as ate more than a little bird would.

Carnivals, festivals, fairs! The news of such activities and parades grew in curvy printed letters over the newspapers with wide loops and stubby lines like dead black ants on a page. It fascinated me, these places with colorful signs, people in leotards and with black top hats and loud booming noises that came from boxes and funny looking instruments. I loved these places filled with noise and destruction—anything in the area that I could get into trouble, that I could be scolded for, could possibly knock a few teeth out.

It was just my luck that such a place existed this morning, and such a short ride away too.

Up up up on top of the greenest hill in the town, a sloping place with sheep's pens and stubby oak trees rimmed around like fences that did little more than encourage people to steal themselves inside and break in.

A horse faire the newspaper advertised with booming letters—cheap prices, lovely horses—a joy to one and all. Well that was all fine and dandy yes, but what really caught my eyes was the fact that under all the words and phrases praising the event there was a small section that advertised a specific treat—a showing.

Centaurs.

Now, of course these beasts are not too rare—you see them very often enough in these parts where the grass is thick and the winters are not too bad to harbor these breeds who have been bred and originated in the warm Greek mountains and beaches.

No, nothing new or uncommon.

So why was I so enthralled you might ask?

Easy, because I caught word of him.

Him who had been sold to six previous owners—four of which he killed because he was simply too rough on them—he went fast when they commanded slow, he bucked when they said halt, he kicked when they urged a walk, and he bit when they screamed stop. He was a mad spitting thing and I loved him.

I straightened myself up suddenly, feeling at the most foolish for thinking such an emotion for an animalistic human. But it was true. I was in love with him, his power, his arrogance, his damnability.

I loved him.

I smiled to myself, quite happy that I had read the paper this morning.

It was then that my thoughts were suddenly slipped away through me like water from a strainer to be lost down the drain.

The smell of dirt and manure was stronger here, chocking and spicy smelling—it made me scowl with disgust as I looked ahead and saw a nailed milky colored sign that had seen better days.

The paint was hand drawn and with snake like letters that spelled out the promise of my coming delight. "Centaurs—No Price returns." Behind the sigh flew an amass of red-red curtains and a latch of leather that kept them in place. From within I could hear shuffling and thumping—hooves banging against stalls that stunk with piss and were infested with splinters. I could also hear the haggling—ten pounds? No? Then how about eight? I heard a few bought's of laughter from within, Centaur or human I could not be sure. But then the laughter suddenly stopped and I was left with the after taste that the voice left in my mouth and a tightness pulling at my chest.

All the sudden a man, with a red face and an unshaven shin stormed through the curtians only to get frazzled by the leather latch, fight with it for a moment, before freeing himself and stomped away like he had just gotten slapped in the face by a ver ypretty lady who called him a slob.

It was at that moment, after blinking away astonishment from my pale face that I turned my head back to the entrance of the sectioned stables, the curtains still sputtering like the devils tongues and wings.

"Send the next buyer in—I'll give them a bite for their money! I shall never be sold to you scum!" I heard the most cheekiest and self assured voice grunt from behind the curtain.

I smiled like a damn cat staring at the worlds most prettiest canary.

I was finally here.