Cory’s breath came in short, quick gasps, expelling puffs of condensate. The weather was turning. She fingered the auction number in her pocket. She could bid on the horse in the farm’s name, but with Vee and Jack sitting right there? And then what? Cory reached up to scratch the inside of the mare’s huge ear, rhythmically stroking it as she thought. She had to convince Vee and Jack to at least look at her. Then she had to convince them to buy her. The magnitude of the task, stacked up side by side with the stupidity of it, glued her feet to the spot. What was the use? Vee had rejected the horses they had tried out so far, and they, at least, looked a whole lot better.
The loudspeaker announced the horse sales were to begin in twenty minutes. Cory, shocked out of her lethargy, spun around to run back to the arena and find Vee. Instead, she ran smack into a man who must have been standing right behind her in the dark.
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