It's been a long time since Annabeth has seen her father. Twelve long years have separated them, and she doesn't know if he could ever really be her father again. As she waits for his arrival, Annabeth wonders if he will understand who she is and what matters in her world. Annabeth's life is Wind Ranch and it's horses; her father's life was once very much the same as hers. With all that's come between them, can their love of horses bring them together again?
The Appaloosa filly snorted and threw her head high. Her eyes rolled. Every muscle in her body was tense. "Easy now, Rosie," sixteen-year-old Annabeth Smith murmured. Her right hand moved on the skin of the horse's neck in light circles. With each circle she made she breathed out softly. In her left hand she held a halter.From outside the stall came the everyday sounds of the busy boarding stables where Rosie was kept. Stable hands were calling to another, horses were stamping their hooves and snorting, visitors were walkin up and down the barn aisles, but Annabeth barely heard any of it. Her attention was riveted on the frightened filly." be careful Annabeth," Bethany said from the stall door where she was standing with Terry Hegland, Rosie's owner. Annabeth could hear the anxiety in her sister's voice. She nodded but her determined grey eyes remained focused on the horse "it's OK, girl," she whispered "i'm not going to hurt you. i'm here to help." "she's being like this ever since i brought her " Terry said. "she just freaks every time i try to halter her. I f you can't cure her I don't know what i'm going to do" "we'll do our best" Bethany said. "It must feel good, helping horses that have problems or hae been abused," Terry said "It must be so fulfilling." Annabeth heard Bethany clear her throat rather awkwardly. "Actually, I don't really have much to do with the treatment of the horses myself. It's Annabeth and our stable hand Ryan, who do most of the work with the horses. I just help with the business side of things." Not Just, Annabeth corrected Bethany in her mind. Wind Ranch, the equine sanctuary founded by their cousin Adam and his daughter Sara, couldn't survive without someone managing the business side of things. Annabeth focusedon the filly again. Rosie's head had lowered, and she seemed to have relaxed slightly. Annabeth moved her hand towards the horse's ears, but soon as she did so Rosie stiffened again. Moving her hand back, Annabeth contented herself with working some more on the Rosie's neck. It looked like getting the halter on the filly was going to be a long, slow process, but if she had to take her time, thats what she would do. Ten minutes later Annabeth's fingers had finally reached the top of Rosie's neck. As her hand inched towards the filly's ears she noticed a long scar running down the outside of the left ear. What caused it? An accident? Rough treatment? "Do you know what might have caused this scar?" Annabeth asked Terry. " I'm afraid not" Terry answered her " I don't know much about Rosie's history. I brought her as a unbroken three-year-old at a Horse sale in Marylan. The gut selling her said he hadn't done anything with her apart from halter training her. He said she was quiet but when I tried to halter her the next day she went crazy, rearing up and banging her head on the stall partition." "Hmm." Annabeth looked thoughtful. studying the scar on Rosie's ear, Annabeth felt sure that it had something to do with the wy the filly was behaving. She scanned Rosie's face. Her haed had lowered again, and she looked almost relaxed. It was time to get the halter on. Tightening her grip on it, Annabeth slipped it over the filly's nose. Rosie immediately jerked her head up, but Annabeth was too quick for her. flipping the headpiece behind the Appaloosa's ears she fastened the buckle. "Whoa there," she said to smooth the filly.