Out Stealing Timber VII
Thea carried the bucket of water down to the fjord, following the fjordling’s path through the trees. The horse was grazing a patch of white clover and fine young grass and ignored Thea as she approached from behind. Thea placed the bucket on the rock and stood with hands on hips, watching the dun-coloured animal chopping the pasture, her flanks quivering with pleasure, the sheen of her coat reflecting the star-like quality of the fjord as the breeze changed from west to east. A gull stopped and rushed over the rocks to check it wasn’t missing anything and the horse swung its head away in an impatient flurry, frightening the bird and, inadvertently, discovered Thea’s bucket of water.
The animal buried her head in the bucket and half emptied it noisily. ‘Slowly,’ Thea said in a hushed voice, stroking her mane. ‘Slow down, girl, you’ve got all day for this. We don’t want you making yourself sick.’
When the fjordling lifted her head, sparkling droplets of water running down her neck, Thea took a step closer, breathing in the horse’s scent, feeling the warmth coming from deep within her body. Their heads touched briefly, broke apart and came together again, their foreheads knitted into one in the ancient salute that humankind and the horse both recognise when their auras meet.
‘And I don’t even know your name,’ Thea said when they broke away into single entities once more.
. . . . . . . . . . to be continued