RUN OUT (storyyy)
   

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RUN OUT (storyyy)

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  • Horse runs out on jump course
  • Before my horse went into her stall today, she bent her head down to touch her right ankle. What is she trying to tell me?

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  • 2 Post By CruceyMoose

 
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    08-06-2011, 10:23 PM
  #1
Foal
RUN OUT (storyyy)

So I decided to write a little story because I was bored. I just started it, lots more will be up Monday! If you want more, of course. In a car all day tomorrow haha.

RUN OUT

The round orange sun was just starting to peek over the horizon line, casting a dim glow over the world. It outlined the dark silhouettes of the grazing horses, as well as glistened off the fresh morning dew that coated the emerald blades of grass. If this was an ordinary day, Alyssa Schaeffer might have stopped for a minute and admired the breathtaking scene. However, the day was anything but normal. It was just before six o’ clock in the morning, on a Saturday, and she had already been up for two hours. Of, course that could only mean one thing: it was a show day.

Yes, there was no question that show mornings were exhausting, yet Alyssa wouldn’t trade them for anything. Despite the bustle of loading tack onto the trailers, wrapping horses, packing tack trunks, all while keeping your clothes immaculate, Alyssa loved the business. Besides, it meant she was one step closer to the actual show and the thrill of putting in a flawless round. She was showing two horses today. One was her talented equitation and jumper horse, Optimo, and the other was a catch ride, Pellegrino.

Alyssa forgot all her thoughts about the day when she swung the aluminum gate open and stepped into the field. “Oli!” She called out. Some of the horses lifted their heads and stared at her direction, possibly hoping she was going to bring them in for their morning feed. “Oli!” Alyssa called out again, swinging the gate shut and walking into the field. Sighing, she kept hiking out into the field. She called out for her horse once more, and then clicked her tongue. Oli, a striking bay 16.2 hand Dutch Warmblood, started lazily walking towards Alyssa, twitching his ears and swishing his tail at the early morning bugs. Alyssa strode towards him and slipped his leather show halter on.

She led him out of the field and into the barn where she fed him his morning grain and gathered her braiding supplies. A few other girls had brought their horses in to get them ready for the show, but overall, the barn was quiet. After her horse had eaten his grain, she gave him a quick bath. Stifling a yawn, Alyssa brought Oli out onto the crossties to dry and be braided. She dragged out a step stool next to Oli and started braiding. Many of the other girls paid braiders, but Alyssa couldn’t afford to pay $50 or more per show, especially for a simple two-day “A” show. For the bigger shows, like regionals or a week long event, she would, but Alyssa was a skillful braider, having endured years of plaiting horses. She could neatly do a full mane in about thirty or forty minutes.

After the braiding came the loading of tack and horses onto the trailer. Alyssa had gotten wise to showing, and would pack up her tack trunk the night before a show so it could be loaded onto the trailer without a hassle. At this point in the day, the barn was starting to have more activity. Stable hands were bringing the other horses that weren’t showing in, stalls were being mucked out, and the girls that were showing were running around with tack or horses in tow.

Alyssa quickly wrapped Oli, and then attached his head bumper onto his halter. After seeing a horse get nervous unloading and fling its head up onto the edge of the trailer and leave a two inch, gaping, bleeding gash she had made sure to always put it on. She led him out to the stable’s parking lot, where the horses were being loaded onto the massive six-horse trailer. Her trainer was directing the students on when to load their horses, to avoid rifts between horses that disliked each other. Alyssa walked Oli in a few circles before being beckoned on by her trainer. She walked up the ramp. Oli heaved out a large snort and then followed. He knew the drill at this point.

Alyssa snapped the trailer tie onto his halter, unclipped the lead rope, and swung the partition closed. She walked off the ramp and hopped up into the pickup truck that pulled the whole thing. Her best friend, Adrienne, was already seated in it.

“Ohmygosh itsAlyssa!” Adrienne squealed, slightly sarcastically.

“Ohmygosh itsAdriennnneeee!” Alyssa squealed in the same tone, and then the girls burst out laughing.

“What are you showing in today?” Adrienne asked Alyssa.

Alyssa bit her lip and twirled one of her chocolate colored curls. “I’m catch riding a horse in the Pre-Greens, and I’m showing Oli in some medal stuff and the Level 3 jumpers. What about you?”

“Lucky!” Adrienne said, pouting slightly. “I haven’t catch rode anyone in forever. I’m showing Oberon in the medals and Champ in Working Hunters.”

Alyssa didn’t always consider herself lucky. Adrienne had everything as far as Alyssa could tell; money, multiple fancy horses, gorgeous long blonde hair and wide, sparkling blue eyes, a fair, patient personality, and riding talent.

“Well, you know, I’m so lucky that I can ride some horse that’s probably some psychotic greenie that will try to refuse every jump and buck me off!” Alyssa said, trying to lighten the mood.

“They just want to make sure there’s nothing hiding in the jump that could eat them!” Adrienne said with a laugh.

Two more girls climbed into the truck, and then their trainer, Christine Evans, hopped up into the drivers seat. She put the keys into the ignition and turned them. She drove out onto the road and yelled, “Who’s ready to show?” A chorus of “Woo!” and “Yeah!” answered her question. Smiling, Alyssa buried her face in Adrienne’s arm and fell into a much needed sleep.
kaykat31 and Cheyennes mom like this.
     
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    08-07-2011, 03:16 AM
  #2
Green Broke
That's great! Keep writing!! One question though, what's catch riding? It might be a stupid question, but I've never heard of it before.
     
    08-07-2011, 07:01 AM
  #3
Foal
Thank you! Oh, it's when you ride someone else's horse in a show and they pay show fees because they want their horse's name to "get out there." Sometimes its because they're trying to sell their horse. So they have to trust you as a rider to get a solid course out of their horse because they don't want you to make a trainwreck course.
     
    08-07-2011, 04:07 PM
  #4
Green Broke
Ohhh! People don't do that in the shows or gymkhanas that I go to...well mostly because they aren't huge, a horse wouldn't really get a big name at those shows. People do train horses at the gymkhanas sometimes though, they work with the horses for the owner and stuff like that and then they ride their horse in another division.
     
    08-07-2011, 10:13 PM
  #5
Foal
Oh fun! Yeah, it's mostly a hunter thing at the bigger shows. =) But hunter/jumpers is all I've done so I don't know what other discipline do.
     
    08-07-2011, 10:14 PM
  #6
Foal
Without further ado,

RUN OUT -- PART II
A bit over an hour later, Adrienne woke Alyssa up. “Come on sleepy!” She said, lifting up her arm that Alyssa head was resting on. “I think I might have to amputate my arm now because SOMEONE decided to rest her big head on it!” Adrienne said teasingly.

Alyssa stuck her tongue out playfully and looked around. They were pulling into the show grounds. Alyssa smiled as she peered out the window. At the front of the show grounds, horses were trotting around in the arenas and jumping. As they drove further in towards the stalls, grooms were hosing horses, people were bent done applying hoof polish and finishing touches, and trainers and riders were conversing.

Christine pulled the trailer up next to one of the two big yellow and striped tents that housed the makeshift stalls. “Alright every one, we’re in the third aisle on the left, all our stalls have Dawn Hill on them, you know the drill. Just put them in an empty stall, unwrap them, then help set up the tack room.” Christine ordered. The girls nodded.

Adrienne opened the door and jumped out of the truck, and Alyssa followed her lead. There were two other girls from Dawn Hill, Alyssa’s barn, were showing today. They were Nikki and Lauren, two talented riders. Alyssa was friendly with Lauren, but Nikki constantly grated on her nerves.

The four girls walked to the trailer and helped Christine lower the ramp. Art, the gorgeous fleabitten gray mare that Nikki owned, was the first off. She pricked her delicate ears up and lifted her exquisite dished head up as she elegantly walked down the ramp. Once her hooves hit the grass, she let out a shrill whinny. “Cut it out!” Nikki snapped, yanking on the lead rope harshly.

The next off was Wallflower, a skittish but very promising young buckskin Warmblood. She was huge, standing at 17.2 hands, but yet she had a lightness to her feet, an elegance. She walked off the trailer and lifted her large head up and nervously tried to drag Lauren off somewhere. Lauren expertly led the horse in a large circle until she lowered her head, blew out a breath, and tried to snatch a blade of grass.

Then, it was Oli’s turn to be taken off the trailer. Alyssa walked up the ramp and swung the partition open. Oli turned his head towards Alyssa and nickered quietly. “Hey bubba.” Alyssa coed, rubbing him between his eyes, the thin part of his blaze.

She snapped his black lead rope to the oakbark colored halter. She unsnapped the trailer tie and led him off the trailer. Oli had been to many shows throughout his three years with Alyssa and he knew the drill by now. Alyssa smiled to herself as she thought about the first several months she had owned him. There had been many tears, falls, spooks, low ribbons or none, and she had considered selling Oli. One day, she toughened up, let him know he had to listen, and the pair had been a force to reckon with ever since.

She led him under the tent and put him in a stall with an index card that labeled it “Dawn Hill Stables.” It was next to Wallflower, and Alyssa knew that Adrienne would come in at any moment with her two horses. Sure enough, she walked into the aisle leading Oberon, a stunning, lightly dappled gray Warmblood. Adrienne put him in the stall next to Oli. Christine came in leading Alyssa’s hunter, Champ. Champ was an attractive black Warmblood with a star and four neat little socks.

Alyssa went into her stall and scratched Oli’s nose. She cooed soft nonsense to him as she unwrapped his legs and set aside the stable and pillow wraps. She pushed them into a corner of the stall. “Time to get food and water for my sweet boy.” She said softly.

Within twenty minutes, all the horses had hay, water, and the barn’s tack room, which was really just an extra stall, was set up. Alyssa grabbed a prize list and checked how far away her first class was. There were several divisions until she did her first division, Level 3 Jumpers.

Alyssa groomed and tacked Oli up. He was turned out in a black baby pad, a fleece half pad, Alyssa’s Beval saddle, a leather girth, a running martingale, a figure eight bridle, and Equifit front and hind boots. Alyssa was neatly turned out in her Tailored Sportsmen breeches, well-cleaned and polished field boots and spurs, a crisp light blue shirt and navy jacket, and her Charles Owen. Her hair was neatly tucked up into a hairnet, and nestled in her black gloved hands was a jumping bat. Her number, 134, was tied around her waist.

Alyssa applied a quick coat of hoof polish and pulled down her stirrup leathers. Christine had placed a step stool just outside the stabling area. As the fifteen year old walked her horse out of the tent, she noticed a few droplets were falling from the sky. “Great.” Alyssa grumbled as she hopped up into the saddle, adjusted her girth, and walked out into the warm up arena. Two jumps were set up in the center of the arena. Alyssa started trotting around the arena, and after some time, cantering. She worked on getting Oli on the bit and responsive. After some more flatwork, Christine came out. Alyssa was the only one who rode jumpers, and the others weren’t showing until later.

“Alright, just pop him over this a few times to warm up.” Christine said, adjusting a jump so that it was about 2’6”.

“Piece of cake.” Alyssa muttered, and she lightly nudged Oli into a canter. He tossed his head when he saw the low jump and tried to rush at it. Alyssa sat quietly and steadied him with her hands. “Whoa boy.” She said in a low voice, rocking her weight back. With an annoyed flick of his tail, Oli slowed down.

Alyssa jumped for another few minutes and the jumps slowly grew larger. She jumped over an oxer a few times, until her trainer declared that the pair was fine to show.

Alyssa walked out of the taped off arena and walked her horse over to where the courses were posted. It was fairly tricky, and included many sharp turns and tricky combinations. Alyssa chewed on the end of her crop nervously. “I’m nervous about that combination. That oxer is pretty wide and just looks really weird and spooky.” She said to Christine, pointing at a triple combination at the other side of the arena.

“You’ll be fine. You wouldn’t be in this class if you wouldn’t be.”

Alyssa smiled to herself. All to soon, she was called into the arena. The rain had been pounding steadily during her warm up, and the course was quickly turning sloppy in a few spots.

Alyssa clucked to Oli and lightly squeezed him with her legs and brushed her spur against his side to wake him up. He pricked his ears forward and sprung into the arena at a strong trot.

“Working now we have number 134, Optimo, owned and ridden by Alyssa Schaeffer.” The announcer said, the loudspeaker crackling as the rain came down stronger. Alyssa swore mildly to herself, but she had no time to muse over the weather conditions for the buzzer went off, indicating that she should start her course.

Alyssa sat down and cued for a canter. Eagerly, Oli sprang into a bright but controlled canter. She turned him to her first jump, a simple 3’3” vertical. The poles were bright, but overall the jump was a simple start to the course. She sharply turned to an oxer. She misjudged how far out she had to turn, and she was too close to the jump to fix the choppy distance she was about to get. She closed her leg and Oli pushed off the ground. The ground was a bit slippery, and he couldn’t get enough traction to really push off and make the long spot work. He brought down the back pole of the oxer.

Alyssa was annoyed at herself, but she had to get over it to continue the course. Most of the course was flawless, and then Alyssa turned to the combination that had worried her. By now, the footing was a wreck. Several puddles had formed in the deep hoof prints that the previous horses had left. The footing that wasn’t under water was slippery and provided little to no traction. “Here we go.” Alyssa muttered to herself as they cleared the first jump. Oli hesitated at the second jump, a single plank that curved upward. Alyssa brought her bat down against his shoulder and nudged him with her leg. He leapt up, and slipped. He crashed through the plank, tripped, and then recovered. The oxer, two curved planks that curved in opposite direction, was right there.

Alyssa gasped. She knew what was going to happen a moment before it did, but she was numb, powerless, in a trance. Oli, who was determined to not get “punished” this time, tried his best. He really did try to protect Alyssa and clear the jump. However, with the horrible footing and tight spot, there was little Oli could do besides turn into a Pegasus and soar over the jump. He grunted and pushed off the slippery ground. For a moment, he was scrambling and Alyssa had a moment of hope, but then his front legs hit the back plank. He landed on his knees, and then started falling, heels over head Alyssa couldn’t quite tell what happened, but all of a sudden both horse and rider were plummeting towards the ground.

And then they made contact with the ground.
     
    08-07-2011, 10:17 PM
  #7
Yearling
This is good so far
     
    08-10-2011, 11:07 PM
  #8
Foal
Thanks for all the positivity everyone! Part III is here!

RUN OUT -- PART III

Alyssa hit the ground first, and she was somersaulted forward and landed on her back hard. Oddly enough, the thought that went through her mind when her shoulders hit the ground first was that the footing was surprising hard for the amount of mud. The thought hastily exited her mind as the rest of her body smacked into the ground. For a moment, she was convinced that it was the worst pain she had ever experienced, but then Oli fell, all 1200 pounds of him, and landed on top of her legs and pelvis area. Then, Alyssa was convinced that dying would be better than the pain she was experiencing. The pain was so great, all she could do was lie there and move her lips in a silent cry of agony. The wind had been knocked out of her, and in a few moments, her silent plea for relief turned into a low moan. She couldn’t stop it, and she couldn’t breathe. Screaming or crying could not fairly and adequately express her pain.

She was vaguely aware of the murmurs in the crowd, the “Oh my gods” and the “What happened?” and the “Is she alright?”

Then, just when she thought relief would never come and she would die or black out right there and then, Christine ran out. Her eyes were large with shock at the horror she had just witnessed. Alyssa had tears welling up in her eyes now. “Get him off please.” She choked out. Her breath was starting to come back, but that was a curse as well as a blessing. It meant that she became very aware of the acute pain in her legs and hip region. Christine was muttering soothing words to both horse and rider, and she stroked Oli’s neck. A few trainers from other barns ran out. They helped encourage Oli to stand up. The horse staggered to his feet, but he was favoring a front leg. Alyssa’s eyes widened, and several tears started falling. The EMT ran out to the sloppy arena, and then the equine ambulance drove out. Alyssa started sobbing.

“Don’t put him down. Don’t kill my horse.” She said, her voice broken with sobs.

“It might not be a break. Relax.” Christine soothed, crouching next to the injured girl. Christine muttered something to the EMT and then walked out slightly to call Alyssa’s parents to let them know about the accident.

The EMT questioned Alyssa and asked her if she could move all her joints. Alyssa wiggled her fingers, bent her elbows, moved her neck and back – sore, but not awful, just sore from the impact, and then they moved to her lower extremities. Her pelvis was extremely painful, but that wasn’t the worst of it. No, the worst of it was her legs and feet. The EMT reckoned that her ankle was broken, at which Alyssa protested strongly. “No, it’s fine.” Alyssa said. She needed flexible ankles for riding so she could put her heels down. Deep down, she knew she would not be riding for a long, long time, but she didn’t want an ankle that was held together by pins. “See?” She said, attempting to flex her toes up. She couldn’t, and intense pain shot through her ankle. She stifled a small scream, managing to scrape by with a sharp gasp, and she dug her nails into the muddy ground.

The EMT also suspected that she had fractured or broken her left shin. Alyssa looked over at Oli. They had removed his front boots, and the vet was running his hands over the gelding’s right splint bone. He looked over at Alyssa and saw her watching and gave her a thumb up. Alyssa blew out a big sigh. Her horse would live, she could go to the hospital now.

The ambulance had pulled into the arena and was waiting for the EMT to finish inspecting Alyssa. The EMT started explaining to Alyssa that she was going to the hospital for X-Rays and casting as she was lifted onto the stretcher and wheeled off to the ambulance. She cast one last look at her horse before the ambulance doors were closed.

I am so so sorry baby. She thought, and then the ambulance wove around the jumps and drove out of the arena.

With that, Alyssa closed her eyes. She knew, cliche as the thought seemed, she mused to herself, that nothing would be the same.
     

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