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The  piglet  squealed  loudly  from  within  the crate on the floor.  Sally beckoned to Jane to lift up the other end of the crate. ‘Come on lets get the piglet to the gate, I can see Dad’s Land Rover by the fence.’

            By the time  they  reached  the  gate  they were  both  puffing,  the crate and the piglet were heavier than they could have imagined. 

‘What have you got there love,’ said Len, as he grinned at them both.   

‘Dad, I  won  the piglet in the  raffle,  can we  take him  home  in the truck?’ said Sally

Len  nodded  and  picked up the  crate  as if  it was  a feather. Sally opened the ramp and he put  the  crate  inside  and  pushed  it  up  against  a  pile of empty potato sacks  before shutting the  door.      

The girls  climbed  into  the  passenger  seats  and  Len  started  the engine.  On  the  way  home  Sally and  Jane  babbled  on  about  geese, ponies and Anna.  Len listened as he negotiated the bends in the country road.  

Jane  jumped  down  from  the  Land Rover  at  the  gate  to   the  cottage.  Her  Mum waved  a  thank you  from  the  kitchen  window.  Back at the  farm  Len  and Sally carried  the crate to the barn and put it on the floor of an empty stall  Len released the piglet from the crate and  laughed as  she  scampered  out  onto  the thick bed of  straw, curly tail carried high on her back.   

‘She’s a nice little pig, you never  know we  may  have  some   piglets from  her  in  a few years,’ said Len  patting his  daughter on  the shoulder.

‘I’m going  to  call  her Perky,’ said  Sally  as they walked together to the kitchen.               Laura  looked  up  from  the cooker. ‘Did  you  have  a  good day?’

‘Yes it was brilliant, we watched geese rounded up by sheep dogs and the show jumping was awesome!’ said Sally. 

After tea Sally  put her hand on her Dad’s shoulder as he sat at the table.

‘Dad, can we go and see Anna  and  her  ponies on Saturday?

Her Dad  scratched his  head, smiled at  his wife  and  said  ‘Where does she live?’

‘Breconridge  stables, Jane caught Anna’s pony when  she fell off in the ring, and she wants us to go see her ponies.’ Said Sally.

‘Alright I’ll take you there on Saturday morning.’ as he sipped a mug of tea. ‘Make sure you do your chores in the yard first.’

Sally nodded, she  couldn’t  wait  to ring  Jane  and  tell her the news.     

Two  weeks  later  Len, Sally  and Jane  set off to  Breconridge  stables situated at the edge of the village. They drove up a  winding  track  at  the side  of  lush  green  paddocks which  led  beneath   a  canopy of  trees.

A  magnificent  manor  house  stood  tall  and proud  with  sunlight  reflecting on the front windows.  Len  parked  the  Land Rover next  to  the fence  adjacent to the stables.  The yard consisted of four looseboxes a feed room and a small tack room. On the roof of the tack room a horse shaped weather vane  moved  gently in  the breeze.   

A  dark  haired man dressed in  smart  beige slacks and a white shirt  appeared  from the side of  the feed room.

‘Hello there you  must  be Mr Benton,  I’m Alan James.  My  daughter Anna said you would be coming to see the ponies,’ he said smiling at the two girls.   

‘This is Sally my daughter, and her friend Jane,’ said Len,  shaking  hands with Alan.  

Anna’s  head  appeared  over  a  stable door.  ‘Come  and  say hello to  Monty.’ She said  smiling  at her visitors.   

Sally and Jane stood in the doorway  of  the stable  to  admire the  handsome black pony as he munched  hay from  a net hanging on the wall.  

The End

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