redrockinhorse

Clayton Rivershine spit over his shoulder grinding his boot heel into the iron rich red rock dirt.

The Whocka Tribal Elders looked on in disgust.

“Ya’ll can’t win no race against Lightning Rod. He is the fastest horse in the west,” he said out of the corner of his mouth.

“Horse too slow. Never win against Whocka stallion,” the Chief waved his arm forward.

© Al Forbes

© Al Forbes

A human wall of face painted Whocka warriors behind the Chief parted allowing an old brown horse to emerge -slowly walking forward.

“Chief you are off your rocker. Hell, I’ll even give you a ten second head start if that old thing don’t die first,” Clayton jumped on Lightning Rod causing him to rear up and dig his hooves into the dust.

The Chief pulled a small pouch off his belt. Scooping out a handful of its contents he feed the substance to his old horse before sliding himself on the beast’s old back.

A gunshot cracked through the air and the race was on.

The Chief and his old horse trotted forward at a fast walk. Hardly a run. Clayton counted to ten before digging his spurs in Lightning Rod who let out a cry. Muscles pushed forward like great steam engines spinning up. Smoke appeared to pour from flared black nostrils as the great steed lurched forward.

Clayton would be on the Chief in a few seconds. An easy victory. Just like he thought.

Without warning the old brown horse stopped and lifted its tail.

Clayton only had a few moments before the exposed puckering brown opening on the old horses’ behind began whistling a high pitched tune that instantly made his ear drums wretch in pain and his vision blurry.

The smell was even worse. His eyes were forced closed and flooded with tears. The very air he was breathing felt like it was made from the fires of hell itself.

Lightning Rod fell over unconscious almost instantly trapping Clayton’s leg under his great girth. Clayton writhed and wiggled failing to free himself. He began to furiously wave his hat struggling to create a pocket of fresh air anywhere near his nose and mouth.

The Chief’s silhouette suddenly appeared holding the small pouch from earlier.  Clayton was now in the thick of stink fog that was suffocating him.

Tiny beans that you might use in a chili began to rain down over Clayton.

Leaning in close to Clayton’s ear the Chief spoke in his monotone way, “Horse too slow. Passes with the Wind always win every race.”


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April 26th, 2015

Posted In: Short Stories, Sunday Photo Fiction

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Sunday Photo Fiction – Always Bet on the Slow Horse