Blue Ridge is a fictional town located deep in the heart of Kentucky. It is home to one of the most well known equestrian academies in the United States. Students and staff from all over the world join the academy for what it has to offer. Do you have what it takes to join us and learn from the Academy?
Post by Ráhel Sárközi on Dec 10, 2017 19:05:30 GMT -8
Ráhel grinned as she tacked up Kaitain. She'd been making progress with the mare, and was thinking they might enter their first endurance ride the next summer. Right now, all that remained was keeping the mare's condition over the winter's chill. While the bridge trail was 'easy' in the regard that it was all flat and about as neat as could be, it was still a good place to get in the miles. So that was their goal that day.
After getting dressed in a light jacket and gloves, and a hat under her helmet, Ráhel led the mare out into the open, where their breaths were immediately visible. Ignoring that, the woman mounted and nudged Kaitain towards the trail system. Time for a long warmup, although Kaitain seemed perfectly happy to try and pull forward, fighting for her head. As the mare walked, tossing her head in displeasure, Ráhel laughed, the image much like she imagined riding a dragon to be. Complete with smoke, of course!
Post by Andie Simone on Dec 26, 2017 1:12:54 GMT -8
It had been too long since she had been out on a trail ride, and even with the chill in the air, Andie didn't let this stop her from heading to Quill's stall and getting the gelding ready for a trail ride.
The gelding was full of himself as they reached the head of the trails and she was thankful for her gloves as he tugged and pulled at the reins, seeming to fight her for control every step of the way; though Andie knew that he was just messing around - as if he wanted full control, he wouldn't have to fight for it, he would just take it. "Coming up behind you." She sang as she saw a rider ahead of them, and she laughed as Quill skittered to the side before calling out to the mare ahead of them.
Post by Ráhel Sárközi on Dec 26, 2017 20:15:12 GMT -8
Kaitian had caught wind of something, and Rahel tightened her reins as the mare raised her head, nostrils flaring. A moment later, though, she found out why, and smiled, raising a hand in acknowledgement that she'd heard the other rider's call. She moved Kaitain over to the right, harder now that the mare was trying to crane her head to look behind her. That'd be something they'd need to work on, passing other horses. That happened quite frequently on a long ride. At least the mare stayed quiet in response to the other horse's greeting.
Post by Andie Simone on Dec 26, 2017 22:46:13 GMT -8
Andie smiled and released a little of her hold on the reins as it was clear that she had been heard, and she allowed Quill to approach the other horse. "You are a gelding." She said, with heavy emphasis on the last word, as the gelding arched his neck as they drew closer to the chestnut mare, and she asked him to step to the side before he really started to try strutting his stuff - that he didn't have. "She's looking great!"
Post by Ráhel Sárközi on Dec 27, 2017 7:30:42 GMT -8
Rahel laughed quietly as she overheard Andie's comment to her horse, although she didn't respond, instead having to keep her focus on Kaitain walking forward. Someone was still distractable! As Andie drew even with them, and commented on Kaitain, Rahel smiled, "Thank you!" She patted the mare's neck, "Apart from the trying to turn around to see who's behind her bit. That's a new one." She looked over at Andie and Quill, "Quill's handsome as always. Enjoying the cool air?"
Post by Andie Simone on Dec 27, 2017 19:52:42 GMT -8
Andie laughed and shrugged. "Ah, but even that can't take away from her stunning looks." She replied. "And with this one being such an idiot, I'm lucky that he didn't spook her." She shook her head at her own mount. "Thanks, and doesn't he know it!! Cool air means that speed isn't going to overheat either of us. Getting ready for a Endurance ride?" She often wondered what Arabian horses thought of the cooler weather.
Sebastene hummed to the black-pelted mare, who was sniffing curiously at her cross-ties. They hadn't used them much back at the ranch, but she wasn't sure how the horse would react in this new barn. She herself was already 'tacked up', as it were, with black gloves, boots, riding pants, helmet, and a bright red shirt that matched her horse's saddle pad and bridle.
Checking the girth, she nodded, satisfied that the saddle was tight enough not to flip, but loose enough not to hurt. She removed the mare from the cross-ties, and led her out of the barn. Checking the map in her hand, she aimed the horse towards the Bridge Trail, and easily clambered into the Arabian's saddle. Before starting off, she checked to make sure her eye-patch (she'd gone with the medical style one today) was on properly, and wouldn't fall off from the thumping of the mare's gait.
Once she was satisfied all was as it should be, she took the reins in hand and clicked her tongue, gently squeezing the mare's sides with her heels. She could practically feel the energy thrumming in the body under her, wanting nothing more than to go into an all-out gallop, but after such a long trailer-ride the mare needed a good stretch first.
The horse began to walk forward, tossing her head eagerly and whickering, as though asking 'please, can't we go faster?' After a good distance, the rider pressed the mare into a trot, posting with each rise and fall. Every time the mare would try and fight for her head, she would slow her down to a walk for a few paces, before asking again for a trot.
Remembering the map, she knew there was a straightaway up ahead, and she intended to let the mare have her head there. Even she was itching for a nice gallop, her good-eye lighting up at the thought. She twitched her heels, and the mare leaped into a canter, hooves clopping on the ground.
Once she was sure they were on the straight-away, Sebastene grinned, and pressed her heels into the horses' flank. Like a bullet from a gun, the mare surged forward, switching into an all-out gallop. This was where the horse did her best, one of the fastest horses on the old Ranch, and she knew it. Ten stretched out with her horse, grinning as the mare's flying mane whipped into her face.
The horse's hooves ate up the distance of the straightaway, the mare chugging ahead like a train. Ten couldn't help but to whoop, feeling her heartbeat match the mare's hoofbeat.
Suddenly, she could see beyond the branches of a tree that stuck out onto the trail, spying two horses with riders, close to each other. She cursed under her breath, calling out "rider behind!" even as she was asking the horse to slow, the mare slowing to a canter, then a quick trot. She tossed her head, asking to speed up, but Sebastene didn't allow it.
Post by Ráhel Sárközi on Dec 28, 2017 6:59:46 GMT -8
Rahel laughed, "I guess the craned neck look works for some." She smiled, "Yeah. She's pretty solid on the trails, which is great. She came like that, though." She'd been testing the mare on that for while already - That was a far bigger issue than some distraction, "And a good point about the cool air. It's hard to dress for, though!" Either one was cold at the beginning of the ride, or overheating when things really got going. At Andie's question, she nodded, "Yes. Well, not a specific one, just working on conditioning. In the summer I'm hoping to start her on a few. There's a few two-day events, I could take Oil and do a long course with him, and then get her toes a bit wet on a shorter course."
She was going to ask about Andie's plans when she heard another voice, raising a hand in acknowledgement before she brought Kaitain over to the side again, "Busy trail today."
Post by Andie Simone on Dec 29, 2017 0:37:11 GMT -8
Andie laughed as she ruffled the gelding's mane. She nodded about the weather being hard to dress for, and listened quietly as Rahel spoke about her plans, not able to offer any suggestions as she knew nothing about training a horse for endurance riding.
She closed her hands on the reins as a voice sounded behind them, and grinned at the comment. "Quit it!" She hissed as Quill looked over his shoulder and greeted the mare behind them; if the gelding were Joey from Friends, he'd be saying "hey, how you doing'?" and she needed the horse to remember that he was a gelding before he made even more of a fool of himself and got them both in trouble - though it was her own fault for not taking him out for long rides often enough.
Post by Sebastene Mikaelic on Dec 29, 2017 13:55:13 GMT -8
Riding the Dragon
Sebastene Vael Mikaelic & Blackbird
Finally, Blackbird soothed, stopping her little tantrum and gentling her gait, no longer jostling her rider in the saddle. To reward her, Sebastene muttered soft words, scratching the horse on the side of her neck. The fur there was wonderfully soft, and many times she'd simply stood there, with her face buried against the mare, telling her her worries. She knew the horse couldn't understand her, but it felt good to do, anyway. The mare would toss her head over her shoulder, almost as though hugging her.
Thankfully, one of the riders ahead acknowledged she'd heard her, and moved enough that she could ride in the opening. The other girls' horse - a gelding, apparently - called a greeting, and Blackbird whickered in reply, tossing her head.
Ten guided Blackbird to ride into the empty space, smiling when she caught the tail-end of what the girl who had acknowledged her said. "It is. May I join you?"
As she got nearer to the duo, she realized that they couldn't be students, both appearing too tall and not quite young enough, although not appearing old in the least. "Ah, my a-apologies, ma'ams." she stammered hurriedly, flushing red.
Post by Ráhel Sárközi on Jan 2, 2018 6:40:19 GMT -8
Rahel looked over to Andie as the girl asked to join them, then figured that it wasn't like they'd been talking of anything unprofessional anyway. However, the girl made it easy to respond with her second sentence, "Only if you stop calling us that. I'm Ms. Sárközi." Rahel wasn't sure how to introduce Andie, so she left that up to the other woman.
Post by Andie Simone on Jan 2, 2018 17:35:55 GMT -8
Andie shrugged in reply to the look, she didn't care either way, though she did shudder at the the apology. "I'm with Ms. Sárközi in her comment." She replied with a smile, though she quickly smacked Quill on the neck as he started posturing and nodded as he snorted and walked forward nicely again. "I'm Andie... or if you want to be proper, Ms Simone. I coach the cheer team, and not the best for encouraging formality."
Post by Ráhel Sárközi on Jan 10, 2018 12:45:03 GMT -8
As the girl tired of their company and rode on ahead, Rahel turned back to Andie, smiling slightly, and then asked, "So, do you have any plans with Quill in terms of showing? Or just enjoying each other's company?" The gelding was certainly flashy, and he seemed like he could easily do well in a dressage arena - She had to admit, she dind't know much of Andie's background and future plans, not having spoken to her much. This was a nice chance to learn something more about her coworker.
Post by Andie Simone on Jan 10, 2018 18:38:56 GMT -8
Andie pulled a face. She knew that Quill would excell in the show ring, but she was also worried about the times that he forgot that he had been gelded, and the last thing she would need was for him to think he was a stallion again, surrounded by new horses. "I really should look at showing him more." She confessed. "I might see about campaigning him over summer. I'm sure I could find a rider for him." If anything, her grandparents would have someone who could ride him, and at least getting his name out there could be a good thing for them.
She shook her her as Quill arched his neck and nickered toward the mare beside him, and she laughed at his blatant attempts at flirting. "God loves a tryer."
Post by Ráhel Sárközi on Jan 12, 2018 20:23:52 GMT -8
Rahel spotted the expression on Andie's face, which seemed to belie her words, but she nodded all the same, "I'm sure if you asked around, there's a student or two who would jump at the chance. And even if you aimed at the professional circuit, he might catch someone's eye." Not to demean their students, but there were certainly higher levels of competition out there.
She smiled at the gelding's attempts at seducing the mare, using her reins to encourage the mare to stay straight, "Keep trying, Quill. Someday she'll maybe give you the time of day."