Hey there, everyone, and welcome to my newest story. I've been trying to find out which book ideas in real life might work and what doesn't, and I found one that might work. It's been a book series I'm hoping to publish and, heck, maybe make it into a TV show. This will be the Yellowstone Squad, a series that takes place in, well...Yellowstone! Here's the summary for the first episode and the entire series:
A wild horse named Flash loses his herd in Montana and makes his way to Yellowstone National Park, where he decides to set his new home. He meets four new friends and makes a kind of small herd with them; they are Gadget (an intelligent red squirrel), Rocky (a daredevil bighorn sheep who loves climbing and berries), Leah (a quiet and aloof wolf who's been unfairly banished from her pack), and Major (a stern and gruff old bison with a heart of gold). This animated series tells about how they go around Yellowstone and help other animals out, while discovering new things about themselves and each other. Along the way, though, they're opposed by a greedy grizzly bear named Strong and his rat minion Berry, who intend to take all of Yellowstone for themselves. The first episode will be about how Flash makes it to Yellowstone and meets his friends, and he will also meet Strong. The rest of the series will of course tell about how they help other animals and learn more about themselves and each other.
Disclaimer: I don't own Yellowstone National Park, but I do own the characters that appear in this series. I appreciate any constructive criticism as long as you're polite about it, and if there's anything wrong with this chapter, please let me know, and I'll fix it.
Publishing Date: October 1, 2017
It was a calm spring morning in the meadows of Montana. Wild horses grazed to their hearts' content, feeling the cool spring air ruffle their manes. They roamed wild and free, with no humans to ride or tame them.
Flash was grazing near the back of his herd. The palomino stallion had tried making friends, but it was hard to make friends when he was in a lower rank. What was even harder was that he was not born into this herd. But he tried to take it in stride even if it hadn't earned him any popularity. Perhaps one day, he could become the leader of the herd and make more friends.
While he was grazing, he noticed a butterfly with orange-and-black wings climbing up a grass shoot. Flash smiled and bent his head down, saying, "Hey, little guy...or girl. Climb on if you wanna fly away."
The butterfly didn't reply, and Flash was sure that the insect couldn't speak the horse language. But it did flash its speckled wings at him as it spread them and then fluttered away. Flash watched it go with a smile; he guessed that it was a butterfly's way of saying "Thank you".
"You're welcome," Flash remarked, watching the butterfly disappear into the trees beyond.
Suddenly, a young gray foal darted out in front of him. He was heading toward a hole where ground squirrels were, and Flash was worried that he would trip over a hole. He ran over to where the foal was running and quickly stood in the way just as he heard a worried whinny. The mother, a roan mare, was racing over to them the fastest she could, while the foal slowed to a halt in front of Flash.
"Ma'am," Flash called to the roan mare, standing aside. "Good morning! I was just making sure your son didn't wander off."
To his surprise, the mother mare ran over and snapped her teeth at his shoulder. "I didn't need an outsider following my foal!" she scolded. "Get away from him or I'll stomp your face flat!"
"Okay, okay," said Flash, backing away. "Sorry. Just trying to help."
The mare snorted before turning to her foal and licking his mane. Flash sighed and prepared to move somewhere else to graze. He tried walking over to a small group of horses grazing nearby, but they deliberately wandered away from him. The good mood was gone now, and Flash couldn't help but flick his ears irritably.
"Hard to make friends, isn't it, son?" a voice asked from behind. "I've seen how you tried to help Sky's son."
Flash turned around. The herd leader, a pinto stallion, was walking over to stand beside him. Even if he wasn't Flash's father, he still saw him as a son in a sort of way. This was rather strange, for stallions usually chased younger males away from their herd, but not this herd leader.
"Kind of," said Flash, bending down to eat some grass. When he swallowed, he said, "I wasn't doing anything wrong. I just wanted to help that foal."
The herd leader nodded. "True, that's true, and I thank you for it," he said. "But the thing is, when horses join my herd, they have to prove themselves to their fullest. Don't get me wrong, you've proven yourself already, but the herd hasn't seen enough of it. You might even need to try harder."
Flash stopped grazing and pawed the ground. "But what if it's not enough?" he asked. "Does this mean I'll have to leave the herd?"
But the leader didn't respond right away. He instead bent down and chewed on a flower, thinking with his ears twitching. Finally, he said, "Come with me, Flash. I want to show you something."
He walked away, and Flash followed him. They passed by several horses, who greeted the leader with a jovial and respectful attitude. As for Flash, the horses either coolly ignored him or gave him a stern look. The young horse was used to this; right now, he wanted to see where the leader was taking him.
His question was answered when the leader took him up to the top of a hill. The two horses looked around at what laid before them. Up ahead were more mountains with plenty of pine trees, and there were many more meadows than the one they currently lived at. There was also a river up ahead, separating the meadows from the forests.
When the two stallions finished looking around, the herd leader said, "You saw all the scenery, right? It's all worth living at, and it's worth fighting and running for. All the food, all the water, all the horses to help and the animals to live alongside with."
"I can understand that," Flash said, pawing uncertainly at the ground. "But, uh...first, what does that have to do with me fitting in? And second, have you ever thought of leaving this mountainside?"
"No, not really," replied the herd leader. "It would be nice to move somewhere else one day. Perhaps to Yellowstone, which lies somewhere up ahead, or even to a land called the Grand Tetons. But there's still plenty of good food and water here. We might still be here for quite a few more years."
Flash felt as if his hooves were already racing to these places. "Those places sound really cool," he remarked. "I've got another question: what if a horse wants to leave? Probably forever?"
The herd leader shook his head. "I wouldn't stop them. And that's the answer to your second question," he said. "If you wanted to leave if you don't feel at home here, then you're free to do so. I will not force a horse to stay if they don't want to stay anymore. Why, are you planning on leaving?"
"No, it's not that," Flash insisted and shook his mane. "Other than the horses not liking me a lot, I don't have much to complain about."
"Good," said the herd leader with a smile. "If you're feeling better, then I need to go look after the herd in case other stallions challenge me. Be well for the rest of your day."
Now Flash smiled and said, "Thanks, sir. I actually do feel better."
The herd leader reared up, neighed, and galloped back toward the herd.
Flash looked back out toward the wide open spaces one more time before following his leader. Perhaps he could get to leave the herd one day and find new pastures. But for now, he would have to work on getting accepted into the herd.