“What did your parents say about you leasing Octavia for the summer?”
Sarah’s voice derails my thoughts, but my eyes stay glued to the paper without reading. I give a noncommittal shrug she can take either way while I think of something. Yes, of course I’ve talked to them about leasing the mare. I’ve talked to them until I don’t have any breath left, and all I hear back is we’ll see or we’ll talk about it when we get through Jess’s auditions or maybe later. Well, now is later. But Dad promised. He promised if I proved I was serious about riding, if I stuck with it, and if I could jump. “None of that riding around in circles. You can do that on any horse,” he said.
Octavia isn’t any horse.
“They’re thinking about it still.” I can’t tell her yes for sure yet. “Dad’s coming today to watch me ride…” And I’m going to show him, convince him…
Sarah’s lips curl in. She makes a soft tsk sound against her teeth and crosses one leg over the other at the ankle. “The thing is, like I mentioned before, Octavia’s not working out as a lesson horse.” Her dark eyes look totally black in the dim light. “If your family’s not interested in a lease, I have no choice. I’ve got to sell her.” She holds out her hands palm up, as if pleading for me to understand.
“Sell her to who?” All I can picture is Octavia, the horse I’ve ridden and helped train for the last year, being loaded onto a trailer by some stranger and driven away forever. Never seeing her again.
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