May Story Contest

Soul Whisperer Chapter 3: Explanation part 2 part 1
By: Spellcheck
Age: 12

Note to reader(s): Okay, I know I haven’t really explained much in the other chapters, but I PROMISE this is when everything gets exciting, okay? So just keep reading ‘till the end!! :):)

    Two months went by perfectly; Cobalt was now healed completely and the whole time he hadn’t so much stomped a hoof to anyone, which honestly shocked me more than the fact that he had survived. He was suddenly perfectly behaved, as if being wild had just been an act, or the Liger attack had damaged his brain so now his personality was completely different. Whatever the reason was though, I wasn’t going to complain.
   I had gone into his stall every day and brushed his coat until it shined, and after the first few weeks he was healed enough that I could take him out to graze on the lead rope for a couple hours a day, just to get him used to human company, and also so I had an excuse to spend hours a day with him.
   I opened the barn door, carrying a halter and lead rope. It was time to graze Cobalt for today. Usually I could only grazed him for an hour or two before Sarah would tell me to put him up and do chores, but today Sarah was gone, so I intended to graze him until he wanted to go back in, which could take all day. 
   I walked up to his stall, and nearly had a heart attack.
   Cobalt was gone. His stall was completely empty. The space where there used to be a latch on the stall door was in splinters, meaning he had broken himself out.
   Immediately panicked, I ran outside and saw the hoof prints of a horse that had galloped out of the barn, definitely Cobalt’s.
   Thinking fast, I ran down the path that led to the pasture, stopping at the gate of the trained horse’s pasture.
   I hopped the fence and ran right up to Dancer; even though she was seventeen, she still had all the speed from her early years as a racehorse.
   I got the halter on her as quickly as possible. She seemed worried about my anxiousness, but luckily didn’t spook. I jumped on her back, not taking the time to get a saddle or bridle on her, and asked for all her speed.
   The pasture fence was three and a half feet high, but Dancer could jump it easily. I nearly lost my balance when Dancer landed the jump, but managed to get it back before she shot forward at a gallop again.
   I could follow the hoofprints at a gallop at first, but when they reached the woods I had to slow Dancer to a fast trot. The hoofprints were deep in the moist forest ground, which made up for some of them being covered by leaves and rocks.
   I was surprised and impressed to see that the hoofprints remained so far apart that Cobalt had to have been galloping, even in the thickest areas of trees.
   The hoofprints seemed to be going anywhere but straight; they went left, right, and a few times they even went in a loop, which was really weird for a spooked horse. It was almost as if he was looking for something.
   Don’t be stupid, I told myself. Horses don’t break out of their stalls because they’re looking for something. Though somewhere in my mind, I knew there wasn’t really another explanation.
   As we were walking, I saw something glint a little ways away from the tracks. I dismounted and picked up what looked like a golf ball-sized ruby. I stared at it with wide eyes, then slipped the precious stone into my pocket.
   It seemed like hours—and it probably was—before I finally heard Cobalt’s shrill neigh.
   I turned Dancer sharply in the direction of the sound, abandoning the tracks now that I had a better lead. The area ahead of us was clearer, so I let Dancer canter.
   The forest opened up into a clearing where I saw Cobalt looking down at a large black bird with his ears pinned back. He half-reared sharply, his hooves managing to make a thud in the muddy ground right in front of the bird.
   “I told you to get the jewel, not lose it in the forest, you dunce!” Cobalt shouted at the bird, tossing his head. “If you don’t find that thing by tonight, I’ll turn you into fertilizer!”
   I gasped. Cobalt said that. I’m hallucinating, I’m hallucinating, I’m hallucinating, I repeated to myself. Cobalt is a horse; he can’t talk. I probably passed out in the barn and this is really all a dream.
   The bird turned at the sound of my gasp, but Cobalt was too busy yelling to notice me at all. The bird’s eyes widened—if that was even possible for a bird—. “C-c-cobalt,” he said frantically yet tentatively.
   “Be quiet! I’ve heard enough of your squawking!” Cobalt snapped, stomping his hoof and tossing his mane.
   “B-but Cobalt, look!” The bird said, pointing in my direction.
   Cobalt turned his head, and staggered backward a couple steps, immediately lowering his head. “Oh. H-hello, Jasmine…. You didn’t happen to hear all that did you?” His voice was suddenly small and apologetic.
   I froze. This is impossible. Horses don’t talk, and neither do birds. This is just a dream.
   “Cobalt!” a woman’s voice chastised. “You’re scaring the girl half to death! What ever happened to letting her down gently?” 
   Dancer said that, I realized numbly.
   “Well that’s kind of hard to do when she just heard me yelling at a bird, isn’t it?” Cobalt said sharply.
   “Gee, someone woke up on the wrong side of the stall,” Dancer muttered.
   “Stop it, both of you!” I ordered. “You sound like five-year-olds!”
   Cobalt flicked an ear back in confusion. “I’m only three.”
   “Oh. Right. Well you sound like foals then.” I had officially given up on the whole hallucination thing—this was too real. I dismounted Dancer and walked closer to Cobalt. “Now would either of you like to explain why you’re suddenly talking?”
   Cobalt began to speak, but Dancer cut him off. “Cobalt, let me give the basics, you can tell the rest.”
   Cobalt grumbled. “Fine.”
   “We’ve always been able to talk, honey, but humans can’t hear us. There are very few who can, whom we call ‘Soul Whisperers’ which is what you are. As you’ve gotten older your gift has grown stronger, but every time you hear one of us, you pass it off as your imagination. Your gift is genetic, so everything usually is explained by relatives with the same gift, but since you are a foster child, you did not have that luxury. Because of this we have been looking for you for quite a while.”
   “Wait,” I interrupted. “So did you know my biological parents?”
   Dancer sighed sadly. “Not directly, no, but they were often spoken of among the Elders, and said to have been great people. Unfortunately they passed away soon after your birth, and human society sent you away to other families before the Elders could take you in, moving you too often for us to find you earlier. Cobalt was—”
   “Excuse me,” Cobalt interrupted. “I believe it’s my turn to explain now.”
   Dancer snorted and shook her mane. “You’re such a foal, Cobalt.”
   Cobalt pinned his ear back but otherwise ignored her comment. “As Dancer was saying, I was sent to find you, which is why I act so unruly; after all, who would an absolutely uncontrollable horse go to besides someone who could speak to it? My job is to find you and bring you back to the Elders,” he shot a glare back at the bird. “Which is impossible without the jewel that allows us to communicate.”
   “Whoa, wait; this isn’t making any sense. Who are the Elders?” I asked.
   “The Elders are the leaders of all the animals, and unquestionably the oldest and wisest. Each species has one representative among them. The representative of the horses in fact, is my grandfather.” He raised his head proudly.
   “Unfortunately though, their wisdom doesn’t always pass on to their kin,” Dancer interjected.
   Cobalt glared at her and stomped his hoof. “Anyway, the Elders make important decisions for the animals, as well as address and resolve problems—which is why we need you. There is a problem that is currently endangering animals that apparently only a human can fix. The Elders haven’t given me much information about it, just that. They are keeping it mostly confidential to prevent panic among the animals, but we must act soon.”
   “Okay…I think I get it. But what were you saying about a jewel?”
   “Oh, yes, the Elders gave me a special jewel that allowed communication over distance, much like one of your tele-whatevers. I was supposed to use it to contact them when I found you. I hid it long ago so I would not have the burden of traveling with it, but now that I actually need it, the person I sent to retrieve it happened to drop it in the forest.” He glared at the bird again.
   I suddenly remember the ruby. “Is this it?” I asked, holding out the stone.
   Cobalt’s ears perked and he neighed in delight. “Yes! Thank you!” he leaped over to me in one bound and rested his head on my chest.
   I laughed and scratched his neck. “You’re welcome.”
   He raised his head to eye-level. “So let’s go then.”
   “Whoa, wait, you mean to the Elders? Already?” I asked.
   Cobalt nodded. “Is that a problem?”


Thanks for reading! I did my best to make this chapter more exciting, so I hope you didn’t find it too boring. Also, I hope you don’t mind the cliffhanger; I just couldn’t help it:):):)