Fresh dressed, like a million bucks IP: 184.108.40.206 Posted on June 1, 2011 at 05:51:11 PM by Mandorla
Mandorla trotted up to the first red flower, proudly arching her neck. At not even a year, she prided herself in being the youngest member of the Falls' army. She slipped into the water quite easily, spreading her long, stilt-like legs apart to keep her balance. She'd toyed with the idea of just ignoring the rules and following her mother, but seeing Satins return all winded and barely able to stand had quickly discouraged her.
Stepping lightly, the two-toned filly waded into the water that was now chest high. Since she was so light, she had to strain harder than a larger, older horse would in order to escape being swept away. She ended up having to swim a short stretch anyway, since chest-height for your average yearling is well above the chest height of a foal. But my little trickster made it across, if only a bit off on the other red flower marker.
Not too bad so far. She'd probably lost some time for the additional effort her smaller size required, but she could make that up on the way to the 'Deserts. Once Mandorla climbed out of the water, making sure to avoid the sharper rocks, she went full throttle and galloped all the way to the sandy wasteland.
Already her black coat was drawing the heat in like a light would draw gnats and mosquitoes. Her sole white splash upon her rump didn't feel as hot, but that was a small comfort. Still, she was soaked through from her water-adventure, so that helped a little.
Truth be told, Mandorla thought she looked very cool with her coat steaming as the water evaporated from it. The deep sand forced her to slow her roll just a bit, since her thin legs sank into it, but because she was so light, she managed to skid across the sand at a faster canter than a larger horse would have managed. Being small also meant that she managed the twists and turns faster than a larger horse would. True, the heat was stifling, but at least she was making up the time she would loose when it came down to length of stride and power later on.
The two-toned filly was glad to have the sand behind her, and the mud was nice and cool to her small hooves which had gotten a bit warm on the hot sand as well. Yes, the mud was more difficult than the sand, and Mandorla was getting tired, but her lighter weight played greatly to her advantage. Here and there, she would slip and slide a few paces, but at least she didn't fall. She'd never run this much in her life! It was exhilarating, but very strenuous. The filly made a note to definitely do this again. Her canter strides were smaller than those of the others would be, but at least she didn't sink in quite as deeply. It still required a lot of effort to pull her legs free of the sticky muck, but she could handle it.
Whoops! There was the yellow flower, and Mandorla had already cantered a few strides past it. Perhaps she would still get credit if she did her buck a bit late? She certainly hoped so. So my little trickster crow-hopped into the air, kicking out with her hind legs. But she had given no thought to her landing. Mandorla slid a few paces, legs going every which way and slipping out from under her until she landed in the mud with a loud splat. In less than a second, though, she was back on her feet, shaking herself off as she resumed her canter, she couldn't help but giggle. No doubt that had looked very funny!
Mandorla made it through the rest of the mud with only a few slip-and-slides, but no additional falls. She was now tri-colored, sporting a big mud stain on her right side. Her eyes sparkled mischievously, and a small smile still played along her lips. That was fun! We should have mud-courses more often! she thought cheerfully when her hooves touched down upon more solid footing. Time for some jumps!
Mandorla hadn't undertaken jumps much taller than your average stream or branch, but she'd seen her older sister, Siham, jump higher obstacles before, and was quite sure she could imitate her style well enough to clear these jumps. Again the jumps were knee height for yearlings, but for a foal they were a bit taller. Still, my little trickster wouldn't be discouraged into jumping the lower ones. She barely cleared the first one, hitting her hind hooves on the jump, which caused her to launch over the second jump with nearly a foot of space to spare in between. She finally got the jump right on the third one, managing it expertly, though her little legs were beginning to ache with every step. The rush from her mud-fun had worn off, and she was now realizing just how taxing this little adventure truly was.
Panting, the two-toned filly was growing a bit dizzy from the exhaustion, her muscles protesting painfully loud at all the extra work, work they'd never done before this day. One more obstacle, then I'll be done! She thought to herself. She gave a quick huff, baring her teeth at the final part of the course. "I'd eat you for breakfast!" she declared decidedly through hastily drawn breaths. She waded through the tall cat o'nine tails at a trot, because she was simply too tired to make it through at a canter, and pay attention to the footing at the same time. Clear of the tall plants, she finally saw the finish line.
Somehow, that vision of the near end gave her more energy, and Mandorla galloped through the last bit of the challenge with ease, fitting her strides to leap over one hole after another, instead of loosing time by skirting them. At the finish line, she gave a triumphant whinny and walked proudly, though her stick-like legs were shaking vigorously, to do as her mother had done. She cooled off in the pool, then collapsed beside Satins, immediately falling asleep. Replies: