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Head First Through The Wall

By Shotechi
132 Favourites
2018 storyline folder "Loving Learning Winning Losing"
Previously | Next

"Don't look at me like that," I chuckle, and push the bay's head away to finish fastening his bridle.

Despite the difficulties, I can't deny that I have started to love this horse. He's gentle and sweet, doesn't fuss much and follows instructions closely. And he likes being groomed. Almost as much as he loves dirt - he really makes sure to get his money's worth in that aspect. 

It's roughly a month until the Champions League starts with its first leg in Tokyo. Tokyo, Japan of all things... I know, this is going to be big. And I am a part of it. 
I'm restless, always agitated in some way. I should be looking forward to the experience, but I can't quite feel entirely at ease... Truth, we haven't really won anything since I brought him home to Cali. Heck, we haven't even placed. We'll cut a really sorry figure if this hasn't changed by the end of April... Time's running, I guess?

The class is starting soon. We're jumping the small tour today... I hope he does good for once. It's funny, I'd even be okay with a rail - as long as he doesn't refuse again. I'm sick of that by now. I don't even know why he does that - his rideability is out of this world, and we have such a good communication already - but at some point he just shuts down and stops dead. I start to realize why he's been sold for such a small price... not even stubborn determination helps at this point. I don't know. 

We get called into the arena. The jumps are massive; colourful and shiny in the Californian sun. Caddy flicks his ears from the surroundings back at me, and back at his surroundings; he is growing a little nervous, but not at the audience, it seems. Still, he listens closely to my aids and jumps into a round canter when I ask him to. 

He feels good today. His strides are energetic and he's willing; making my stomach untwist a little as I lead him towards the first obstacle. Okay, I think. Not too fast now, just keep these rails up, speed is something for another day. He jumps. Nice. He's easy to collect after the landing, 8 strides make the distance to jump number 2, a vertical. He hesitates a little - but I'm sitting a bit deeper into the saddle and reassure him, so he pulls up to the obstacle and clears it with his signature bounce. Up comes the combination, vertical, oxer. Nicely jumped. Caddy seems to find his confidence - I let the reins a little longer and encourage him to take up speed, which he does. Jump 4, well done. Jump 5, close, but cleared. I give more rein. 
Jump 6, an airy one, but yet one of the highest of the course. Caddy tosses his head. I feel tension in his back; can only sit into the saddle and urge him on, but the rhythm is lost already. I let go of the reins.

The impact drives all air out of my lungs. From the corner of my eye I see my horse backing away from the obstacle, and coming to a halt at a safe distance. He ogles me bashfully.
I struggle to breathe; slowly pain floods my body. Groaning, I gather my limbs under me and push me out of the sand. I'm dizzy, but I'm standing.  
"I'm okay," I say, lifting my arm to signalize the approaching paramedics that there's no need to worry. "I'm okay." 


I'm almost fine, I mean everything hurts the next few days, but neither Caddy nor I are seriously harmed. If anything, he's grown a little more timid. I give him the day off and take Blue for a ride. 
The mare makes sure I know how much I have fallen out of favour with her, but today I don't care. No saddle feels more familiar and comfortable than hers, and even though she's never been more moody than now, this ride is exactly what I need to get my thoughts somewhere else. 

Well yeah... it doesn't quite work. 5 minutes in I pull out my phone. A thought comes to mind - I open facebook.
It doesn't take me long to find what I'm searching for - these people are everywhere in the horse world. Blueberry has stopped to eat, but I don't care - my fingers are flying over the phone screen, typing, typing, and then I hit send. 

"hi james, its summer from the clinic at cs? i know we talked just briefly but i think ive come to a dead end with caddy??? i think i need help" 


If this story feels choppily written - Summer's train of thought is not very coherent, and so I tried to include that in the chapters I write about her... I'm just typing straight ahead and in the end don't correct it a lot... hope it's not tooo strange to read ;D
Art, characters (c) by me, no ref used
Image size
2477x1734px 7.24 MB
© 2018 - 2021 Shotechi
anonymous's avatar
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UnbreakableStrides's avatar
Goodness Caddy... If it hadn't been for the drawing I was almost certain that things were going to go smoothly for the duo.

The story isn't strange to read at all girl! Wonderfully written. 
Shotechi's avatar
He's a bit of a difficult case! D: but right now it's actually going well for them (: yet. haha

Thank you so much!! That is so relieving to hear, means a lot :hug:
Thanks for the lovely comment! Much appreciated :tighthug:
Helsinge's avatar
Aww Caddy sweetie, come practice jumps with Tekla, she halp with the scaries :noes:

I hope he makes a comeback in Pula :stare:
Shotechi's avatar
yessss he probably just misses her so much XD 

And he will! 
Fibonacho's avatar
Und ich flieg, flieg, flieg... :giggle: xDD
Arme Summer :/
Shotechi's avatar
Bald wirds hoffentlich besser D: 
CSStables's avatar
This is equally awesome and painful to look at! Awesome at how amazing you are at capturing such a heart stopping moment! I mean just look at that gorgeous stopping movement.. and painful because I can imagine that hurt like hell for Summer. 

Also the story was really refreshing to read! Did not expect a first person type telling <3
Shotechi's avatar
Thank you so much!! Fails like that are among my favourite things to draw :giggle: 

And I'm super glad that you liked the story! Summer has such a unique way of thinking and feeling, it's interesting to experiment with that! I still haven't found her true voice - that bit of writing doesn't really do her compexity justice in my opinion.. but it gives me the opportunity to get to know her better! :D 
CSStables's avatar
Ehehe its certainly nice to see different aspects of life in the show ring other than just perfect rounds x) adds up to the story.

Well the more you write from her perspective, the easier it will become to get in her head : D
abosz007's avatar
Oh interesting to see this story from her point of view OO.... but wow that looks awful ...shes so brave to think so quickly past the pain and already have her head towards solutions and improvement
Shotechi's avatar
Paul-the-lazyest's avatar
Aaaaaaand concussion.
Kaelidae's avatar
Honestly, it always takes me half a second to figure out I'm looking at one of your drawings and not a photo. Great work.
Shotechi's avatar
oww high praise!! Thank you very much (:
Boooberry's avatar
I actually love the way you write this, feels so real, and it gives such an awesome look into Summer's thoughts! :nod:
But damn, that doesn't look fun at all! Poor Summer, the worst thing is when you have a lovely horse that just has that "refusal" urge in him. I hope they can get it worked out soon!
Shotechi's avatar
Ee I'm super glad that you think so! I'm still in the middle of finding her voice, that's something I've always struggled with, but it's slowly coming along (even though she's such an old character already and has so much development...! it's crazy :giggle: )
Thank you so much!
anonymous's avatar
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