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Author Topic: measure by their heartbeat  (Read 857 times)

Morwen Steelsheen

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  • Alias: Dory
  • Application: Plotter
measure by their heartbeat
« on: October 27, 2016, 03:57:12 AM »

There was no set course of hard and fast rules when it came to horses. Every which being that had ever trained one, gentled one for their own purposes, had their own beliefs and superstitions. It was better to train at this time of day. It was more prudent to show them the bit and the bridle and leave it as such before focusing on movement. Voice commands trumped movements of the body. Movements of the body made for a more supple mount--the list went on and on.

Morwen, personally, was a great believer in doing what was most natural. From the moment she'd been given leave to work horses without her father's guidance, the young woman had found it far more enjoyable in the long run to work for as long as conceivably possible with her horses without real restraint or shackle before introducing them to the harness they would inevitably have to wear. They seemed to trust her a great deal more in the long run when it came down to the finish line -- there was a certain kind of respect there that came, in turn, with them allowing her near, listening to her, without being forced bodily to stay there. But she also believed in letting them be horses while they were young, just as her father did, and so it was a process that worked as effectively with those who had been turned out with their dams as much as it helped those who had been handled straight from birth. It helped, because it made easier the added weight of the cold saddle on their back, or the pressure of her limbs, or in the need to know what to do if their future rider fell from their back in the midst of a battle...because they trusted that what was being done was okay, and in turn, were trusted to use plain good sense.

Not to mention, it made catching them quite a bit easier when they were out in the fields.

Though it was cold and frost crackled under her boots, Morwen had always found it infinitely quieter in the early mornings, when the sun was barely a glow of golden light over the horizon. Not quite a morning person herself, yet it helped perversely in that few were around, and thus few were there to bother her in that far more pensive, if not grumpy, mood that often afflicted early mornings. It also had the added benefit of accomplishing more in the day, if one got up early. But mostly, it was the feel of the landscape that got to her the best. Light enough so one could see the landscape slowly come alive, but not so bright it distracted. It was cool, enough for one to see the blow of warm air that erupted occasionally from the muzzle of the grey filly currently lapping the round yard, but not so cold that it injured limbs and forced one to rug up. Which Morwen infinitely preferred; she liked her mind free when she worked, as much as she did her limbs. Which was probably why she preferred this early in the morning anyway; she could get away with the simplest of clothing without fear of judgment, leave her hair unbound as much for that freedom to her thoughts as for warmth, and not be censured for it. It left her entirely able to focus on what was important.

Head high and tail a cloudy banner in the dawnlight, she was as princessly as they came, this one. Anarore; she'd been named her for the dawnlight in which she'd been born, though in hindsight, the name was as appropriate for the burning fire that was the sun as much as it was her beauty and her birth. Of course, it was a right mouthful to say too often in an hour, and so Morwen had, with all due dignity, nicknamed the young mare Bossy, because that was what she was when in the herd. This one had taken that little bit longer by the sheer measure of her stubborn spirit to work with, but as with all things, all it took was time. Time and patience.

Morwen knew about those all too well.
Mist blew from the dappled nostrils, a blowing snort that seemed defiant, fearful even, but what the horse-knowing knew to be as intrigue and, blessedly, concentration. They'd spent long hours putting purpose to those proud movements, and Bossy undoubtedly noted the difference herself. Horses were not fools, after all, despite what some thought. Her natural carriage refused her to be slothful, but there was always improvement to be found in the young, for they were ever developing. And that was what Morwen wished of her, for her to carry the muscle that was developing so swiftly with ease - in time, to carry herself and whatever need be with ease. To do that, she must learn to collect herself, to change step and foot without a stumble, for to stumble in battle was death.

[What Morwen wouldn't admit, of course, was that battle wasn't all that likely. Because she wanted this one for herself.]

And of course, at this moment, there was no death. And thus, when she had done a turn thrice for the woman with her hindquarters tucked under and her movements limber, Morwen allowed her to slow. Lowered her hands, ceased hier movements, so that she would know that it was alright. Shifted only enough so that the mare's attention would be drawn to the saddle sitting at her feet, that object that was becoming steadily more familiar by the day. Time to stop, my little beauty. Time to rest. Come to me, my dark eyed beauty.

Many did not realise this, but horses were creatures of personal space as much as humans were. Oft. was the mistake made in which people reached for their faces, moved forward before the equine did, and in the end, it resulted only in a half hearted partnership [at the very best]. Nay, it was right to let the horse approach on her own merits, and so Morwen did as she'd been taught as much as she was now teaching, standing where she had stilled her movements even as the horse took it upon herself to circle another lap, until she was out of sight and behind the girl. Morwen exhaled softly, letting her study her, until finally Anarore sought out closeness, the soft clop of hooves on the grass growing ever closer until warm breath blew across her shoulders, the back of her neck, shifted and paused to exhale against the leather contraption at her feet, then wuffled into hair almost black in the morning gloom. And then, and only then did Morwen reach back, a hand finding gently the quivering muscles of a deep chest and the satiny touch of warm horse hide. The filly arched her neck and crinkled her muzzle in delight at the scratch, and despite herself, Morwen laughed, solemn countenance giving way to soft chuckles.

"There, my love, did I not tell you it would become easier with practice? Come along, there it is. You know what it is. Have another smell."

Morwen crouched down then, hand staying upon Bossy even as it slid to her leg. The young horse followed the movement, huffing again over the saddle, nibbling at it's flaps, whatever took her fancy so long as it did not scare her.

"There's a good lass," Morwen said quietly, "Get well and used to it, for you'll be wearing it before the morning is out."

'be humble, stand proud, and don't be afraid of your fears.'

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