Author Topic: That’s One Angry Horse  (Read 10638 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Existentially Odd

  • Navigator
  • Administrator
  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 12603
  • Wanderer
    • View Profile
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2007, 11:56:05 PM »
The Stable Manager laughed good-naturedly and waved the question away, as if it were thoroughly unnecessary (which it was).  "Of course it is!  I\'d be appreciative, in fact, since I\'m the only one who can handle Atropos - besides you, of course - so I often have difficulty making room for him in my schedule.  This way, we can share the load and I\'ll feel less guilty about neglecting him," Gallagher chuckled, reaching across to pat the horse in question\'s flank.  The way his ears flicked at the unexpected contact only made him laugh more.

"You two make a fine pair," he complimented as he leaned back into his own saddle, admiring the regal-looking blonde now that his hair was whipped by the wind and he sat so stoically astride his proud warhorse.  The all-black attire was what really set Lord Liari apart and brought the possibly-embarrassing words from Gallagher\'s lips, but he was compelled to say it before his brain thought too much on the subject.  He found the lord attractive and wasn\'t the type to hold back when such feelings struck him (even though he certainly curbed his enthusiasm since he knew the man was engaged).  "You\'ll make a grand sight on the streets and out here on the land."

Offline Kysis

  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 1559
    • View Profile
    • The Relentless Muse Blog
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2007, 02:13:12 PM »
It was reassuring to know that Gallagher was the only one who could handle Atropos (or rather the only one Atropos would let handle him), because Kysis knew his horse was in good hands.  Kysis had not told the story behind the horse when he first brought Atropos to the stables, so they did not realize just how important the horse was to him, but that did not seem to matter with Gallagher.  The man treated all horses with the respect they deserved, and caution in some instances.  That was a damn good thing.

However, the other comment was a touch odd.  Kysis did not really understand it, glancing down at himself before looking back up at their path.  He was seated back on his saddle again, legs no longer having to hold on with tensed muscles and tight gripping.  That was good.  His legs had started to get tired.  The saddle was hard, but familiar, and Kysis was looking forward to sitting in it more often.

Just, how would he look impressive though?  His hair was disheveled, he was sweaty, and he was perched on an angry horse.  Kysis did not bother asking though.  Lam had told him that wearing black did something to him, Kysis did not remember what.  Something about his fair hair?  Probably.  The black was of mourning, though, not to make him look regal.

"Um.... Thank you?"

Kysis was still unused to getting complements, and for that matter, not having a helm over his head most of the time, so this was all strange and new.  In that spirit, Kysis just ignored the odd comments, trying to keep a smile forced, as hard as it was.

What he wanted to know is if his looking regal would get Lady Blake to not see Kysis as Lam\'s screwtoy.
Μεταξύ λάμψη και τρέλα


Lord Kysis Liari (Ένας πεσμένος ήρωας.),
Fenwick Baldor (Song, wine, and a bit of trouble),
Calista Liari (Θραύσματα Ομορφιά)

Offline Existentially Odd

  • Navigator
  • Administrator
  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 12603
  • Wanderer
    • View Profile
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2007, 03:29:22 PM »
"Welcome," Gallagher shugged, grinning broadly.  He turned his attention back to the land they were passing but found it was too mundane to interest him - it was where he\'d grown up, and with such an intriguing foreigner by his side, there was far more of interest to talk about than the land he\'d seen since he\'d first begun walking.

"So tell me," he began eagerly, giving up his cool facade of staring nonchalantly about, much as the lord was, and turning slightly in his saddle to face Kysis, "are all the horses from Greece like Atropos?"

Offline Kysis

  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 1559
    • View Profile
    • The Relentless Muse Blog
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2007, 03:53:12 PM »
"If all horses were like Atropos in Greece, no one there would ride them."  Kysis chuckled at this statement, ignoring Atropos\' whining.  The warhorse was too damn temperamental for his own good.  It had almost been the death of him once. "There was a group of horse racers who were about to put Atropos down when my father happened upon them and bought him."

There was worry in his tone as he said this, Kysis unable to school it out of his voice.  Atropos had been kicking and stomping and making all sorts of ruckus, trying to keep the horse racers away from him, not letting the rider anyway near him.  They could barely even get one strap of a saddle fastened before Atropos managed to break something on the brave soul who tried taming him.  That was how Atropos had been.  Kysis wouldn\'t say Atropos had mellowed, he\'d just attribute it to the different sort of people handling Atropos now.

"Atropos was a present for me.  The racers were all shocked when I managed to actually strap a saddle on Atropos and then ride him.  Their top trainer wasn\'t even able to do that."  Kysis kept rubbing Atropos\' neck, the horse not at all minding, though he kept a big, dark brown eye on Gallagher, making sure he wouldn\'t try to touch again.  Atropos was fiercely loyal, though Gallagher seemed to have won him over to an extent.  It was good.  If Atropos didn\'t like someone in the stables, he would never get fed or worked out.
Μεταξύ λάμψη και τρέλα


Lord Kysis Liari (Ένας πεσμένος ήρωας.),
Fenwick Baldor (Song, wine, and a bit of trouble),
Calista Liari (Θραύσματα Ομορφιά)

Offline Existentially Odd

  • Navigator
  • Administrator
  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 12603
  • Wanderer
    • View Profile
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2007, 04:08:38 PM »
"Put him down?" Gallagher gasped, thoroughly incensed at that notion.  "Admittedly, he\'s a handful, but I\'ve seen worse and horses are never that temperamental without cause, in my experience!" he declared indignantly, eyeing off the warhorse with shock.  "It would have been a terrible shame to have wasted such a magnificent beast," the Stable Manager decided, giving a perfunctory nod to his own judgment.

"Has he ever sired any foals?" he queried, looking at Kysis with extremely inquisitive blue eyes.  He\'d been pondering doing that, even though he hadn\'t had any requests per se, but nobles were always asking his opinion on horseflesh and trying to get a better, stronger animal to win them prestige and often money, one way or the other.  Bede had rather fancied mating Atropos with one particular strawberry mare he had stabled in Oberon, for her owner was the daring sort and always trusted his decisions.  The mare was swift but she had no stamina, he rather thought a pairing between her and Atropos would produce a perfect foal.

"And would you be interested in him doing so, if not?"

Offline Kysis

  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 1559
    • View Profile
    • The Relentless Muse Blog
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2007, 04:23:17 PM »
"Atropos hurt a lot of the stable-hands where he was originally housed."  That was all he really had to say about why the horse racers wanted Atropos put down.  Kysis did not agree with them.  Be nice to a horse, and it would be nice in return.  Did the racers not think of that?  Of course not.  All they wanted was a fast, high performance horse, nothing else.  Some horses would take beatings and still run like there was no tomorrow, trying to win for their master.  Atropos was different.  Strike him once, and forever more was Atropos an enemy.

"I don\'t know of Atropos breeding, if he has or not.  I was rather lax on his holding in Kreos, so who knows."  Kysis thought about it for a moment, laughing, unable to keep his next comment in, even if it was a little inappropriate (by his standards). "Maybe Atropos is so angry because he never gets laid."

That was a humoring thought.  It worked that way with most humans.  Why wouldn\'t horses be the same?  Well, of course there were certain things which were different, but still.  Could animals be cranky if they never had sex?  Kysis had heard from more than one source that he had been rather volatile until he was getting laid.  Which infuriated him at first, but then he noticed the change himself, and decided that ignoring the comments of those people was best.  Tiberius\' joke cracking about it definitely got under his skin more than was good for him.

"It might be good to allow Atropos to breed though.  It would be a shame to let his warrior spirit and strength go with him and him alone."
Μεταξύ λάμψη και τρέλα


Lord Kysis Liari (Ένας πεσμένος ήρωας.),
Fenwick Baldor (Song, wine, and a bit of trouble),
Calista Liari (Θραύσματα Ομορφιά)

Offline Existentially Odd

  • Navigator
  • Administrator
  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 12603
  • Wanderer
    • View Profile
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2007, 04:36:43 PM »
Gallagher\'s laugh at the lord\'s bawdy comment was loud and appreciative, causing even Captain\'s ears to perk back momentarily.  "You could be onto something there - though I think everyone would start questioning my sanity if I questioned owners of cranky horses as to when they think their animal last got laid!"

He eventually calmed down from laughing at the thought of such things to be able to focus on Kysis\' words, a new glint now flashing in his eyes as he threw a dimpled grin his companions way.  "So you wouldn\'t object to me finding a partner for him?  There\'s a mare I have at the stables that I think would make an excellent partner for Atropos - she\'s got the legs, he\'s got the muscle, I think they\'d make a fine baby.  Her owner is an adventurous spirit and trusts my decisions; you\'d have equal stakes in the foal, unless one of you decided it might be worth it to invest in full ownership of course," Gallagher added, being used to such business transactions.

"I suppose I shouldn\'t cross that bridge until we\'ve come to it, though," he chuckled, still grinning at Lord Liari but seeking his final approval on the matter.

Offline Kysis

  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 1559
    • View Profile
    • The Relentless Muse Blog
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2007, 04:44:51 PM »
"They wanted to run Atropos on a track, but he wouldn\'t cooperate."  Kysis made that statement after hearing there was a female horse Gallagher had in mind, and one that ran like the wind, from the sounds of it.  Would the owner of said horse even want anything to do with the possible spirit Atropos might put into a foal?  That was another question, that could be sorted at a later date.  Kysis knew nothing about breeding horses, or who did it, only getting the why.  People always wanted a better horse.  Taking two horses with good traits and breeding them together made offspring (some of the times) with the same good traits.  It was a smart idea.

"I bet Atropos would appreciate it."

The warhorse probably had no idea of what they were talking about, though some people thought horses could understand humans.  Kysis was unsure, though Atropos often acted as though he did understand.  However, no matter what Atropos had to \'say\' about it at the moment, Kysis had the first say as to whether the warhorse got the opportunity or not.  Then, and only then, could Atropos decide if he was willing.

"It sounds like a good plan.  Is anything required of me in this?"  It was not that Kysis worried about the possible financial constraints of this whole process.  He already paid for the stalls for four carriage horses, Rico\'s horse, and Atropos.  Atropos had the best accommodations, but the other horses were not too far behind.  Kysis liked horses, so he did not mind spending money on them. "Anything at all?"
Μεταξύ λάμψη και τρέλα


Lord Kysis Liari (Ένας πεσμένος ήρωας.),
Fenwick Baldor (Song, wine, and a bit of trouble),
Calista Liari (Θραύσματα Ομορφιά)

Offline Existentially Odd

  • Navigator
  • Administrator
  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 12603
  • Wanderer
    • View Profile
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #23 on: December 18, 2007, 04:52:05 PM »
Gallagher chuckled.  "No, just your permission.  I\'ll get the mare\'s owner\'s permission and then it\'s all up to the horses.  I don\'t know how they\'ll feel about doing anything this season, though.  Still, I\'ll put them in the run together every now and then and see if they take - hopefully he doesn\'t abuse her, though she\'s a willful little redhead if she sets her mind to something, and if she doesn\'t like the way he treats her, she\'ll stick up for herself.  Reckon he\'s got a thing for redheads like his owner?" the blonde grinned, tilting his head at Kysis mockingly, as if he were sizing the man up innocently.  The devilish glint in his eye showed that he knew exactly what he was saying, though.

Offline Kysis

  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 1559
    • View Profile
    • The Relentless Muse Blog
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #24 on: December 19, 2007, 01:26:11 AM »
Kysis caught immediately when Gallagher started saying redhead in terms of the horse, looking over at him with a \'are you trying to say something?\' sort of look.  A platinum brow was cocked, Kysis listening intently.  Oh, well, it seemed Gallagher was saying exactly what Kysis thought he might, which meant his mind had cleared up a bit since this morning, when he was too distraught to even talk, much less think straight.  Perhaps the food had helped... He hadn\'t had lunch yet, but his recent forgetfulness concerning meals had made it so he didn\'t even feel it.  Mental note to self: eat upon arriving home.

The lord did manage a laugh though, as uncouth as he thought it was to mention horses mating and like it back to humans being together.  Well, Kysis had no clue as to what Atropos thought about redheads.  The horse did not mind Lam, had become less irritable towards her, but Kysis had never had Atropos near a red horse.  Could horses even see in color?  That would definitely determine whether or not Atropos would care.

"Oh, that is easier than I thought.  Alright.  Atropos is in."

The city gate was not too far away now, Kysis looking at it.  He always got a touch nervous this far away from a gate, with open land still around him and behind them.  The safe walls of Oberon were in sight, but..... this wasn\'t Kreos.  Kysis calmed his mind down quickly, hoping his sudden tense was not too visible.  An untrained eye might not pick it up, but Kysis was not so sure about Gallagher having a completely untrained eye.  He wasn\'t militaristic, so not trained in that way, but the man had to be on his toes with horses, notice things about them.

Luckily, Atropos decided to toss his head around and rear up a little on his back legs, making some noise.  Kysis sighed, rolling his eyes at the display. "We need to get back now, seriously Atropos.  You may have eaten, but I haven\'t, so back to the stall with you."  Atropos whined and flicked his ears impatiently, spurring Kysis to say some more. "If you act up more, no fun for you."

The horse was still giving quiet protest, not wanting to go back to Oberon yet.  Kysis refused to give Atropos another run, though.  This one had been tiring enough.  That, and he had not even left a note at the manor, so people might be worrying about him.  That wouldn\'t be good at all.

"I really hope this gets him to calm down a bit."
Μεταξύ λάμψη και τρέλα


Lord Kysis Liari (Ένας πεσμένος ήρωας.),
Fenwick Baldor (Song, wine, and a bit of trouble),
Calista Liari (Θραύσματα Ομορφιά)

Offline Existentially Odd

  • Navigator
  • Administrator
  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 12603
  • Wanderer
    • View Profile
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #25 on: December 19, 2007, 10:58:15 AM »
"It will," Gallagher assured Lord Liari good-naturedly, smiling at the antics of the pair.  He could tell that the two of them had a very close bond and understood a bit more about Atropos now because of it; the horse was very loyal, staying true to the one who loved him most.  It was a good thing.

"He always acts up once we try to head back inside, but once he\'s in his stall with a fresh drink of water and some feed, being brushed down, he\'s happy enough, even if he\'s trying to convince you he won\'t be."  The Stable Manager looked down at his own mount and patted Captain\'s neck with a grin, noting how the horse straightened up and lifted his hooves just that little bit higher once he saw his home city in sight.  It was obvious he understood his rank in the scheme of things and knew he belonged to someone special, being used to the attention of multitudes of eyes being turned to him whenever he passed.

Gallagher encouraged Kysis to retrace their path through the quieter streets of Oberon this time, letting him lead to be sure the lord could find his way in and out of the city independently.  If all else failed and he did take a wrong turn one day when he was alone, he\'d likely make it in and out without a drama on the streets he knew, but the risk of injuring an innocent bystander was higher if he took the more populated streets.  Atropos was a spirited horse, so Gallagher figured it was very important for the lord to learn his way.

"Well done," he commended when they passed through the inner gates and the stables were in sight.  "We\'ll make an Oberon local of you yet," he chuckled, which made him frown with curiosity.  "So are you and the captain planning to stay here in Oberon, or are you going to relocate down to your homeland?" he enquired, glancing at Kysis as he steered Captain towards the ramp at the southern end of the stables.

Offline Kysis

  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 1559
    • View Profile
    • The Relentless Muse Blog
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #26 on: December 20, 2007, 02:38:54 PM »
It took a moment for Kysis to conjure up his memory of the route they took upon exiting Oberon proper, and then reverse the whole journey, but Kysis managed.  In fact, he did not take a wrong turn.  It was reassuring to know that his memory was still up to par, despite how much strain he had been going through lately.  His memory had always been something Kysis prided himself on, this time no different (though he did not show any outward displays of this, keeping it tucked away in his head, like usual).  Kysis was glad when they safely made it back to the stables, and their momentary lapse in conversation was broken.

For some reason, Kysis actually enjoyed what conversation he had with Gallagher.   They were not friends, not that close by a long shot, but could exchange ideas, opinions, the like, without anything judgmental cutting things off.  There was also an air of authority Kysis had picked up off Gallagher.  It helped, feeling like the one he was talking through was knowledgeable and there to help.

"Definitely staying in Oberon."  The answer came fast, without a moment\'s hesitation after Gallagher asked.  Perhaps he said it too fast?  Kysis did not think second of it, having already decided that he wanted to stay in Oberon a while ago, even before they got to Greece together (the they being he and Lam). "The stablehands at the Keep cannot even handle Atropos, so either way, it would be best if he remains here."
Μεταξύ λάμψη και τρέλα


Lord Kysis Liari (Ένας πεσμένος ήρωας.),
Fenwick Baldor (Song, wine, and a bit of trouble),
Calista Liari (Θραύσματα Ομορφιά)

Offline Existentially Odd

  • Navigator
  • Administrator
  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 12603
  • Wanderer
    • View Profile
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #27 on: December 20, 2007, 10:15:20 PM »
"I was thinking more about the fact that you might well be stealing our lovely Wilson away, but your horse matters too," he grinned, chuckling to show that he was only half serious.  Lord Liari wouldn\'t be the first noble he\'d talked to that had his sights only on his own business, not thinking about the greater consequences of his actions; it wasn\'t worth condemning the man for, but a friendly jibe wasn\'t completely unwarranted, either.

Gallagher waited until they\'d reached the top storey of the stables and dismounted before he continued, looking over Captain\'s withers towards his companion.  "If you have somewhere to be, you know I\'ll comb Atropos down, don\'t you?  I\'ll get someone else to do Captain and do Atropos myself."  It had seemed that Lord Liari was a little preoccupied and the last thing the Stable Manager wanted was him to feel obligated to stay, when he simply wasn\'t.  They at the stables could fare just fine without him.  "Don\'t feel you have to stay if you have other committments," he smiled encouragingly.

Offline Kysis

  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 1559
    • View Profile
    • The Relentless Muse Blog
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #28 on: December 21, 2007, 12:14:46 AM »
Kysis gave Gallagher a look when the statement was made about his horse being important too.  That statement had been part a joke as well, but apparently the stablemaster did not see the humor in it.  There was a lot more to Kysis wanting to stay in Oberon than his horse or his mercantile success here, none of which reasons were any of Gallagher\'s business.  Assumptions were terrible things, and because of it, Kysis retracted his earlier thoughts of Gallagher being a good person to just talk with without worried.  That was a completely wrong assessment, bad on his part for assuming as well.

Dismounting, and ignoring the protesting Atropos gave when he did, Kysis looked over Captain towards the stablemaster, considering for a moment.  He probably did not even realize he was talking aloud in this. "All my meetings for today are over.... but damn, didn\'t tell anyone where I was going, either."

Clearing his throat (it felt rather scratchy, even afterwards), Kysis spoke up now, addressing Gallagher this time. "I wish I could stay, but I have a feeling some people at home will think I\'ve blown off being a lord too long already."  Kysis shook his head, a soft smile showing he disagreed, and almost thought they might give him some silly response upon returning home.  Probably not, now that he considered it.  He just hoped it wouldn\'t get an earload from either Lam or Rico, or that they didn\'t tag-team him with reprimands.  That might be too much for him to handle right now.

"I probably should go.  Sorry Atropos."  The horse was pissed off enough already to not really care if Kysis went or stayed, it seemed.  Atropos knew he was going back in his stall and wasn\'t all too happy about it.  Kysis staying to brush him down or leaving would not change that disposition.
Μεταξύ λάμψη και τρέλα


Lord Kysis Liari (Ένας πεσμένος ήρωας.),
Fenwick Baldor (Song, wine, and a bit of trouble),
Calista Liari (Θραύσματα Ομορφιά)

Offline Existentially Odd

  • Navigator
  • Administrator
  • Novelist
  • *****
  • Posts: 12603
  • Wanderer
    • View Profile
Re: That’s One Angry Horse
« Reply #29 on: December 21, 2007, 01:29:56 AM »
Gallagher nodded, giving a cheery wave as he ducked under Captain\'s neck to take Atropos\' reins off the lord.  As he did, he looked up the stable corridor behind him and gave a piercing whistle that obviously meant something to his stablehands - to the horses, too, for three of them stuck their heads immediately over their stall doors, ears perked, even while two stableboys came hurrying from the far end of the building.

"Not to worry, Lord Liari," he then told the platinum blonde calmly, flashing dimples as he negligently handed Captain\'s rains behind him but hung on to Atropos.  "He\'s in good hands.  You go home to yours and let them know we had a bit of fun without them," he grinned conspiratorially, dropping a wink and listening to Kysis\' farewell before he took his warhorse into his stable to tend to.