The Healing Horse, Ch. 25: Magical, Scene 1

image of apples in a basketThis scene opens Chapter 25: Magical, which explores the effects of friendship, art, and even makeup on young lives. Scene 1 sets the stage, as Tammy’s mom phones Karen’s to propose a play date for the girls.

(Image courtesy of Victuallers, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

Scene 1: A Call from Patsy

The last day of January was warm and dry. When Mama arrived home from work, she left the windows of the car rolled down and thought she would relax outside. But then the phone rang inside the new house.

She hurried in and picked up the heavy, black receiver.

“Hello?” she said.

“Katie! It’s Patsy! Do you have a sec?”

It was Tammy’s mother. Patsy always talked fast and sounded excited. Mama sat down by the phone and kicked off her heels. Karen would not arrive home for thirty minutes, so this was a good time for some grown-up talk.

“How would you feel about Tammy coming over to play with Karen? It could work the other way, too, but I know the girls have been talking about your Art Deco dresser. You have one, right? It must be a beauty. My Tammy is crazy to see it, so I thought I should check with you and see what you thought. Great socialization. Build friendships. Even a little art appreciation. I don’t see how it could go wrong.”

“I think that would be splendid! Anything to encourage Karen to socialize more.”

“Well, she already is, isn’t she? Since the school got rid of that mean Mrs. Pinzetti and hired a qualified special ed teacher to help the kids with learning disabilities, Karen seems to have really perked up. At least she looks happier when I see her. Tammy, too!”

“Yes, you’re right, Karen’s really coming out of her shell. She’s been walking to the local grade school and playing tetherball with the children, there. They seem to accept her, and she’s made friends with several of them. And I know she and Tammy are close. She talks about Tammy all the time. I think it’d be wonderful if Tammy could come over for a visit.”

“That’s great! Tammy talks about Karen all the time too. I think Karen is the only real friend she has. Your daughter is so kind. She relates really well to people and understands everything Tammy says. It’s like she has wisdom beyond her years.”

“Thank you. She is wonderful, but of course, she’s my daughter, so what else would I say?”

The women laughed, and then Patsy said, “I need to go now. The bus is here with Tammy. Why don’t we see if the girls ask about visiting, and if they don’t then we bring it up? But I’d like them to take the initiative.”

Mama said, “You’re right. Let’s see if they will do it. Have a good evening, and talk to you soon.”

She hung up the phone. Outside the kitchen window, Pegasus was munching on the fresh apples Karen kept in a basket for him.

She swung open the window and said, “Six months. Six months since Karen walked to the pier and met you, Pegasus, and look at the changes in her life. This girl Tammy has become so important in my Kitten’s life, and her mother won’t reveal anything about her past. What happened to the father? Did he die, like my love, or did he abandon his family, when he realized that he was responsible for a child who would always need him? I wish Patsy would tell me, silly me who talks to horses.”

She closed the window and sat down to relax until Karen got home.

Original text ©2022 by Karen Lynn-Chlup. All rights reserved.

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