The Herds of the Mountain - Chapter 1

by Amy

Rachel looked over at her riding instructor. "Like this?" she asked, holding the reins up. Her instructor nodded. Rachel got Ace into a trot again, turned the corner and stopped. The people watching clapped as she rode out of the ring.

"You did well for a first try on Ace." Rachel's father said happily. Ace snorted. "I think he agrees with me." her father chuckled. As Rachel lead Ace back into the barn, she noticed a girl leading Cherry out to the ring. "Hi! Are you new here?" Rachel asked politely. The girl nodded. "My name is Alicia. I moved here recently." said the girl. "I'm Rachel." she said. Ace whinnied at Cherry.

"I better get Ace into his stall." Rachel told Alicia. She opened the stall door, leading Ace in. With the push of a hand, the stall door shut. Alicia walked Cherry out of the barn as if she had done it a thousand times. Rachel walked up to the hill where here house stood, overlooking the ranch. The door was open, as always.

When she walked in, Rachel was stunned to find her mom painting for once. "I knew you would love painting!" Rachel told her mother. Her mother nodded. "Your father begged me to try it, just once. And I fell in love with it." Rachel's mother replied, not taking her eyes of the painting.

The family gathered around the table to eat. Nathan was typing on the computer while he ate, Pam gobbling down her meal. Everything was normal. "I saw some wild horses in the mountains today." Nathan finally looked up from the keyboard. "Tell me more!" demanded Rachel, she wanted to know as much about the new discovery as possible. "They were all spooked by something." Nathan told his younger sister. "Probably because of your tangled, frizzy hair!" teased Pam.

Their father gave Pam the look, and she went back to her meal quickly. "They had a beautiful, white lead stallion. He looked at me, then at Storm. And then the herd ran off." Nathan said. Pam's eyes widened. "You got to ride STORM?" she asked in a angry voice. "Why would you care?" he shot back with a cold glance.

The night had fallen, Rachel had yet to fall asleep. "A white stallion...." she thought, not letting it get out of her mind for a second. Sudden hoof beats made her leap out of bed. Whinnies and neighs filled the silence of the night. Rachel looked through her window. A stallion, whiter then fresh snow, and a black stallion, darker then the night sky, fought right outside her window. The two herds behind the stallions where shivering with fear, huddling together.

Rachel, amazed by the sight, ran out of her room. She grabbed her house coat and got in her slippers. Wen she got outside, the two stallions still fought. "Stop it!" she yelled. She had spooked the black stallion pretty good, his heard running behind him. The white stallion approached, his head down low enough for Rachel to pet him, as if to say "Thank you." She rubbed him on the head gently.

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