With a slight nod of his head and the shuffling of his papers, Mr. Smith excused Delia. "I'll break the news to Meg. If you'll excuse me I have business to attend to. Jacquie will show you out. Have a nice day Delia." He said simply, giving an open gesture to the door at the opposite end of the office. Nodding, whether the man noticed or not, Delia smiled and took her leave, giving thanks as she left.
Wow, Delia thought to herself as she walked back to her car, Meg is going to be so angry when she finds out about this. The cash is great, but I'm not a teacher, I still take lessons myself. And how will Meg take it? Delia sighed, pushing her key into the lock and opening the car door and feeling partly guilty. Her goal when she showed up at Meg's house wasn't to bully Meg into riding; let alone into a student position under someone who was a student herself. She turned the car over and headed toward home, unsure of what would happen when Donnovan Smith broke the news to his daughter.
Meg sat in the turn lane, angrily tapping her finger against the steering wheel. She was as exasperated at the traffic now as she had been when Teresa Yearly had refused to sell her that regal grey mare. Who in their right mind, could turn down a guaranteed payout of five digits? And who was that woman to judge Meg and tell her she'd ruin a horse? Teresa didn't know Meg! She couldn't. And the brunette had seen her ride once, but somehow that was enough to prove that she was one of "those" riders? What in heaven's blazes was that supposed to mean? Sure she was a newbie, but...
Across the center console, her phone buzzed indicating a new text had come through. The touch screen indicated that the message was from that no-good two-timing liar and Meg was more than happy to ignore the text. The light finally turned green, letting Meg's mind switch from frustration to driving as she sped to the freeway and eventually homeward bound.
"Daddy!" Meg called as she walked in the door, carelessly slamming the door behind her, "what do you know about working around liability waivers and sellers who change their mind when you want to buy their product? I found a place for you to sue!" She dropped her bag on the floor, kicking off her muddy boots and leaving them in the aisle. Jacquie stood by quietly, only her eyes showing the anger she refused to speak.
"Oh hi Jacquie. Be a dear and clean this up? Thanks." Meg said to the maid, lightly treading off to find her dad. As always, he was parked in front of the tv.
"Did you hear me dad?"
"Well? What do you know about it?" Meg demanded, moving around the furniture and plopping on the couch.
"I know plenty about work-arounds."
"And? Don't you want to know who to sue? It'd make me so happy dad!"
"..Who do you want to sue, Megan?"
"I want to go after Crescent Acres for refusing to sell me a horse when it was already promised to me!"
Turning an unamused stare toward his daughter and holding his mouth in a grim line, Donnovan simply said: "No."
"But why dad? Those mean people denied me that horse! Even when I offered quadruple the original price, that's 20grand and they told me no!"
"You did what?!" Her dad shouted, taking just a second to to breathe before he spoke again, "Megan, those people had their own right to deny you that animal. There's no work-around about it."
"But--" Meg started to whine before being abruptly cut off by her father.
"No buts. They were within their right, but you were not within yours to offer more money than I agreed to. You're grounded, for a month. That is non-negotiable. Go to your room." Donnovan said firmly, turning back toward the tv. Not believing him, Meg simply reached for a magazine to flip through. She was shocked when her dad smacked her hand away. "I said to go to your room, Megan Laureen Smith. Get there, or so help me I will drag you there myself."
Meg blushed, looking from her dad to the magazine and back again. Uneasily she trudged up to her pink prison cell, closing the door behind her. It was then that she registered the muffled snickering down the hall...
The path is different for you and me, but the journey begins in the heart.