A Pony of Her Own: A short story about girls and horses by Laurel M. Smith
Ch. 4 – Big Trouble?
Jason walked into the office. “What are you doing here?” Libby asked him as
he sat down in the chair next to her.
“I’m just waiting here with you for Mom to come pick us up. Are you in some
kind of trouble?” he asked.
“I’m not sure,” Libby replied. “Miss Lee just told me that she wanted to talk to
me before I leave today.”
“Well I need to talk to her too,” said Jason. “I don’t think these riding lessons
are working out for me. I think I’d do something else instead.”
“I’m sure she’ll understand,” said Libby. “And I’m sure she is still proud of you for
staying on that runaway horse and finishing the end of your lesson.”
Jason dug some coins out of his pocket. “Have you got another quarter? We
could share a soda from the Coke machine. And how did you get so covered in
mud?” he asked.
“It’s a long story,” she replied as she searched her pockets for a quarter.
Libby and Jason saw Miss Lee walk up to Monica’s mother in the driveway
outside of the office with Monica following her. Tony had taken Lady back to the
barn to hose her down and check her for injuries. Monica was in big trouble for
going off alone on a horse that didn’t even belong to her. She climbed into the
car with her mother and slammed the door.
“Monica has broken some serious rules,” Miss Lee told her mother while
Monica sat in the car with her arms folded. “The most important rule being that
you should never ride alone. She is suspended from riding at Spring Park
Stables for one week. After that time, she may come back, but only if she really
understands how important it is that the rules are followed. The rules exist for
the safety of all the riders and the horses too.”
Libby swallowed hard. She just knew she was going to be suspended too for
trying to follow Monica across the creek. Jason looked at her sympathetically.
Just then, Libby and Jason’s mother pulled up in their van next to the barn.
“Mrs. James! Could I speak to you for a moment?” Mrs. Lee said to her walking
in her direction. They began to talk quietly.
“Here it comes, Jason,” said Libby, “I just know I’m going to be suspended. I
wish I could hear what they were saying.”
Miss Lee turned and walked into the office where Libby and Jason were
waiting. Libby jumped up and cried, “I’m so sorry Miss Lee! Please don’t
“Suspend you? What for? You were only trying to stop Monica from putting
herself and Lady into a dangerous situation. In fact, I’m proud of you for looking
out for her. She should never have gone off alone. Anyway, I just wanted to ask
you if you were interested in riding a smaller pony at our next lesson.”
“A pony!” Libby could hardly believe her ears. “I’d love to!” she replied.
“Good, then it’s settled. I’ll make sure Ginger is saddled and ready for you. I
just wanted to make sure that you didn’t mind riding a pony instead of a horse.”
“Mind? I love ponies! I’d rather ride a pony than a great big horse any day. Did
you say, ‘Ginger’? Do you mean ‘Ginger Snap’?” Libby asked remembering the
sign that she had seen on the For Sale Bulletin board.
“The very same,” replied Miss Lee. “I guess you’ve already heard of her. And
your friend Lauren is going to be riding Lady in next week’s lesson with you.
That is as long as Lady wasn’t injured in today’s incident. I think they will do well
together. Now, what about you Jason?”
“I don’t think I prefer a horse or a pony,” he replied, “I think I prefer to play
Miss Lee laughed. “OK, Jason. Your mom just told me that you haven’t been
that excited about your riding lessons anyway. And after your runaway
experience today, I guess I can understand. Your mom and I are both proud of
you for getting right back into the lesson after being so startled. That was quite
a ride. Now you two run along, and I’ll see you next week, Libby, for your
Libby and Jason ran out of the office and climbed into the van with their mother.
“A pony!” Libby shouted with excitement to her mother. “Miss Lee has a pony
for me to ride in next week’s lesson! A pony named Ginger!”
“Ginger Snap,” her mother corrected.
Libby wondered, “Now how did Mom know that the pony’s name was Ginger