Horse with No Name

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic


A boy and his horse travel the mysterious desert.

Submitted: February 05, 2018

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Submitted: February 05, 2018

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 Along the dirt trail he rode. Through the solem valleys and over the sandy dunes. The land was barren, not a mosquito to swat away nor a bird to admire. Just the boy, his horse, and the blistering desert sun. Gazing ahead towards the distant mountains the youth’s mind wandered aimlessly. How long had he been out here? When would he reach his destination? Would he even survive the journey? Questions stirred around in his tired mind, and just as before they remained unanswered.

 With a long sigh he slowly unlatched a clasp on his saddle and removed his waterskin. He shook it around a bit, trying to assess how much was left for his trip. Much to his chagrin it was near empty. The boy debated drinking the last of his life source, who knew how much longer it would be till there’d be another chance to refill his canteen. Blistered lips and a throat so dry a spark could start a fire swayed him. He removed the cap and partook in what could be his last sip. Wiping what little sweat would muster from his brow, the boy put his drink away.

 Night came, and with it the rain. It was a storm he was ill-prepared for. The heavy rain hit the ground like machine gun fire, cold wind cut through the barren land like a bowie knife, and lightning and thunder boomed with the cacophony of cannon fire. The youth found a lone tree amid the chaos. Tying his horse up he took shelter behind a waist high rock. As the wind howled he had no trouble in finding the irony in his current situation. Wrapped in his father’s grey overcoat, the child curled up in a ball looking for some reprievement from the heavens above. No reprievement was to be found as the tempest grew worse.

 And from the darkness he heard it. A deafening, earth shaking cry. The sound pierced through the rain and thunder like an arrow pierces flesh. The boy’s body rattled and his ear’s rang. As quick as the noise came it left. Sounds of rain and thunder returned to his deafened ears. He trembled with fear and awe. The trepidation he felt did not halt his curiosity towards the source of the noise. To his surprise a gust of courage swelled within him.  Against his body’s will he decided to risk a peek at this terrifying mystery. Shifting to his knees he raised his head inch by inch over the rock he was using as shelter. He squinted into the dark night, rain obscuring his vision. The clouds blocked the moon causing difficulty for his vision. In the distance lighting struck.

 And from the light he saw it. Colossal. It was the first word that came into the bewildered kid’s mind. The flash of light only afforded him a quick glimpse at this creature, though that was enough time to terrify the boy to his core. This thing was tall as a mountain, and just as long. It stood semi-upright on four spindly legs that seemed too thin to support its weight. An enormous tail adorned in spines dragged behind the beast. The boy couldn’t make out any features on the gargantuan monstrosities’ head. The awestruck boy swiftly ducked his head behind the rock.

 The old tales his grandmother would recite began flooding back into his memory. Tales of strange beings living deep within the desert. Giant creatures that would come to get little boys who had been naughty. Bedtime stories to put children to sleep is what he figured they were; yet his own two eyes just disproved that.

 Trying to comprehend what he was just witness too proved difficult. The boy’s heart was beating out of control and his mind was in a spiral. Taking a few deep breaths the kid composed himself somewhat. Deciding to figure out if the thing was even headed in his direction the child ventured another look. Once again peering over the rock he observed where he saw it last and waited for lightning to strike once more. After several long seconds, which felt like hours to the boy, lightning streaked across the sky. Under the bright light there it remained. Exactly where it was before. Nearly two miles away it stood motionless with its’ head looking up at the black clouds. It was seemingly transfixed by the raging battle of nature going on in the heavens above.

 The boy now faced what could be a fatal decision. Was he to stay put and hope whatever was out there wouldn’t notice him, or did he mount his horse and run into the night. With the torrential rains and dire winds getting lost or worse was a serious possibility if he chose to leave. Hunkering down and hoping that thing stayed away could mean a terrible fate if the beast drew near. Confronted with two options that could both end in death was not a pleasant feeling for the kid. Reaching underneath his wool shirt, the despondent child produced his father’s necklace. Though his eyes could barely make out the small pendant, he knew every detail of it by heart. Rubbing the memento he searched for guidance from a man who left his life long ago.

 A minute passed. The boy opened his eyes and inhaled the cold, rainy air. Donning the oversized coat he walked over to his horse. He pet it’s mane and untied it from the dead tree. Ascending the surprisingly calm animal the kid settled into the saddle. With a squeeze of his legs the horse went into motion. Not knowing for sure which direction worried the boy, but onward he pressed. Through the rain, the wind, the cold, and the terror. Through any obstacle in his path. The boy would not be stopped.

 


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