11/10/2023 NaNoWriMo, DIG TWO GRAVES: 673/16973.

Well, the good news is, I got some writing in. The bad news is, this weekend is going to be busy. Light posting generally until Sunday, in fact.

The dullest horse in Brackettlee sported the name of ‘Cow.’ He was in the second place we had looked at earlier, but somehow we overlooked him completely. In our defense, Cow was a pretty overlookable horse. Light brown, a little smaller than usual, no distinguishing marks at all — and almost nothing going on behind those eyes.

I still don’t know what the breed is, because Cow came with no papers. As the horse trader explained: “He got caught up in a cattle roundup somehow, and when the cowboys counted their stock they found him wandering around in the middle of the herd. He acts like one, too. Just stands around like he’s waiting for something, though damned if I know for what.”

“So why didn’t the cowboys keep him?” asked Marigold. “Never turn down a free horse, and all that.”

“They thought about it,” the trader replied. “But they decided that, sure, they could handle horses, and they could handle cows — but they didn’t care for dealing with a horse that thought he was a cow. So they sold him off to me, because I wasn’t going to be fussy.”

“How mean is he? Or friendly, sure.” Marigold looked at Cow’s teeth, at the animal’s utter indifference. “He’s healthy enough, at least.”

The trader laughed. “I genuinely do not believe he cares enough to be mean, Honored Horseman. He’s broke to the saddle, or at least resigned to it. Cow’ll move when you tell him to and carry what he can, but if you want a horse with spirit, well, I won’t lie. He’s got none.”

Marigold and I gave each other a look. I shrugged. “That might be just what we’re looking for, then. Mind if I see how Cow takes a rider?”

“Go right ahead. You’re looking for something to be rode.”