Chapter 4:

I woke up and found myself sleeping with other horses. Where am I? What are they all doing here? They don't belong at the O'Reilly farm? I heard a voice. Is it you Zelah? No, it was that Joe. I stamped my feet against the cart. I was in a small cart that had a large roof. I wasn't dreaming. What now?

"All right, horsies. Time to show us who is boss!" Joe screamed.

"Hey Joe, don't you mean that we have to show them who is boss?" a voice spoke.

I neighed and walked off the cart. Joe snatched me by the reins tightly. Zelah never let me put on reins. She told me that it felt like having a long stick put under your tongue horizontally. The more the rider pulled, the deeper the stick went under your tongue. Ouch! Joe is very aggressive.

I was brought up to a little pen. Different riders auctioned for horses. Joe stayed always stood by my side. I tried to walk away from him, but he just grabbed my reins.

"28, 29, 40! Going once, twice, and SOLD to the man in the tall cap with $40 in Northern money!" the auctioneer screamed to the top of his lungs.

The horse that was sold was an auburn horse. He had a white stripe across his left eye. His hooves had black socks. He looked strange. I assume his name was Isaac, for the man who bought him was named Gerald.

"Hey Gerald, I bet your horse can't beat my Adela!" Joe taunted.

"Oh yeah? I take on a bet!" Gerald demanded.

I neighed and realized Isaac had neighed too. I looked at him. He was more of a horse that came from the wealthy. You see, I wasn't used to having horseshoes on. It felt like someone cut a little too much of a human nail, as Zelah would say. I was just a regular farm horse. I wasn't meant to fight. It hurt. Joe put on heavy saddles and wore heavy attire. Gerald did too. I felt like a pig. I had to breathe!

"Ready, set, GO!" Joe yelled.

I ran as fast as I could and tried conserving as much energy as I possibly could. Isaac was in the lead. Gerald didn't seem to have a heavy saddle. I ran as fast as I could. Joe hissed into my ear. His hot breath burned my ear. If he breathed in my mouth, my throat would be parched! My back was screaming at me! I was dying! If my ears weren't attached to my head, they'd be running away! Joe found a heavy rock in his satchel and threw it in front of Isaac's path. Gerald not knowing, Isaac tumbled a bit. I was now in the lead and won!

"Ah, Gerald. Your Isaac isn't as good as my beautiful Adela."

"Give it a rest, Joe. Isaac is just new here. He's going to get used to the land here." Gerald spoke without knowledge about the rock.

"Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's time for dinner."

The two young men walked to the Mess Hall, while Isaac walked into his own pen. We spoke to each other.

"That was a good race, Isaac."

"Thanks, dar-" Isaac abruptly stopped.

"What happened?"

I knew what Isaac was about to say "darling", but I just laid it off. Why would he say "darling"? We hardly knew each other. Well, I hardly knew him.

"Where are you from?" I asked.



"Not far, huh?"


"How's life?"

"Umm… fine."

"Yep. Do you see those stars?"

"Of course."

"They remind me of my mother's eyes."

"Well, my mother was sold. She later passed away."

"I'm sorry."

"You don't need to be sorry."

Isaac wasn't much of a social colt. Neither was I. I walked slowly to my pen, which was adjacent to his. I felt a strange sensation. Had Isaac spit on me? I turned around. Isaac was staring at the moon. That probably reminded him of his father's eyes. No, he didn't spit. What was it? I wondered for a long time. I still didn't know. I'll probably figure it out someday.