2016 05 06 19.42.46


United States

Howdy! I am a klutzy sophomore who laughs at herself! ;) I am a country girl at heart, and love writing, reading, drawing, being outside, being with little kids, and animals. My goal is to one day publish a book, and do something great!

Message to Readers

Here is part 3. From here, I might start publishing entire chapters, because I want to make this an actual novel I think. Let me know what you think.

Rodeo Star Part 3

May 9, 2016


A week passed before I was out of a wheelchair and back on my own two feet. My leg was weak, and I wobbled the first time I attempted to stand up, but it felt good to not be dependent on anyone else to get around. The first hour of freedom I spent eating at a local cafe that I loved.
    “He David. Good to see you back. Long time no see,” a familiar voice greeted me as I walked in the front door.
    “Good to see you too, Mindy.” I flashed a smile as I took a seat at the counter top.
    “How ya feelin’?”
    “I’m doin’ much better, thanks. It feels good to be up and walkin’ again.”
    “Oh I don’t doubt it. Your leg healed up pretty quick, huh?”
    “It was a small break. It was my collarbone that got really beat up.”
    “I was expectin’ worse with your leg bein’ crushed by that sweet horse of your.”
    “Yeah. I got lucky I guess,” I rubbed my arm remembering the  unexpected fall, and the following guilt.
    “Well I’m glad to see you back. Can I get you anything?”
    “Yeah. Black coffee and a tuna melt.” As I finished reciting my order a small blonde waitress tapped Mindy on the shoulder.
    “Sorry to interrupt. A customer is askin’ for ya, Mindy,” her soft musical voice intrigued me, and I sat quietly listening.
    “Thank you, Joy. Will you help David out for me?”
Turning to me she asked what I wanted and I told her what I had asked Mindy for a minute ago. I watched her as she prepared the coffee and my tuna melt sandwich with graceful movements. She was a small girl, about five foot three. Her long curly blonde hair was neatly tied up in a ponytail towards the top of her head, and the end of it fell onto her shoulder. She came over to give me the delicious smelling sandwich, but almost dropped it when her eyes met mine. Her hazel eyes shone with excitement.
“You’re...you’re David Jones! The barrel racer!”
I laughed at her surprise. “Yes I am. And you are?”
“I-I’m Joy. Joy Ricks.” I shook her hand as a smile came to her pretty face.
“Nice to meet you.”
“And you. I watch every one of your events, and I saw your fall. I see your leg’s better, but how’s your shoulder?”
“It’s holdin’ up. Thanks for askin’. So you work here in the cafe? You must be new.”
“Yeah, it’s my first week, but I’ve pretty much got it down. I’m a fast learner, and Mindy has helped me out a lot.”
I smiled as I took a sip of my coffee. She opened her mouth to say something else, but someone sat down in the seat next to me and demanded a coffee and burger. I grimaced at the lack of manners the man had.
“You know, a simple please wouldn’t hurt. It’s the least you could do after interruptin’ a conversation,” I said turning toward him. Recognition clicked in my head and I immediately bit my tongue.
“Well you see, sonny, I’m not really in the mood for manners,” My grandfather’s voice replied.
“I’m terribly sorry, sir.”
“Come here, Junior.” I meekly accepted his irregular display of affection, and gaped at him. “How ya doin’?”
“Better...I’m guessing you mean the accident?”
“Yeah. I saw it on the news, big deal, and thought I ought to fly in and check up on ya. Took me longer than I thought.”
“It’s good to see you, but I haven’t seen you in five years, why would you come to see me now?”
“That’s for another time,” He said turning to Joy, who was silently gaping behind the counter. “Is my hamburger comin’ yet?”
“Yes, sir. Sorry.” She rushed back to the kitchen to put together the burger.
“The service around here ain’t gotten much better since I left.”
“The service has actually gotten better. If you were here you’d know that. She’s just new, and curious.”
“Well, in my experience, a nosy waitress ain’t a good thing. You can’t be too careful these days,” he said shaking a finger in my face. His steel grey eyes were stern as he stared intently at me warning me to back down. I knew that look all too well, and I knew not to mess with him when he had that look, but I never listened to common sense anymore.
“Mindy wouldn’t have hired her if she thought she was goin’ to be pokin’ her nose in the customer’s business. Besides I was havin’ a nice conversation with her, before you sat your rear end down, and so rudely interrupted.” I stopped to take a breath, but was stopped by an unexpected chuckle followed by a full on laugh.
“Oh, David. You remind me so much of your father. He would always stick up for other people, but never for himself. I had to toughen him up a little.”
“You-you’re not mad?” I stuttered, still confused by this jolly outburst.
“No! Stand up for others and for yourself. That’s a good thing to have in life. Maybe have a little more respect, but other than that you have this thing down.”
“If you don’t mind me saying, I did speak to you with respect, but there comes a point where respect just softens the message, and then the message doesn’t get across, if you know what I mean.”
“And that was one of those instances?”
“Yes, sir.”
“So I was out of line then?”
“Yes, sir.”
He leaned back a little and studied me, a slight trace of amusement in his serious eyes. “My, my. You’ve grown up more than I thought.”
“You have been away for awhile, sir.”
“Yes,” he mused as Joy came back out with a hamburger and his coffee. He quickly asked for a to go box and cup. “Well, I do want to say hello to your father before I head back on the road again.”
“You’re leaving already?”
“Yes, sonny. I have some business in Arkansas. I might stop by on my way back though, if you’re around.”
    “I won’t be going anywhere for awhile,” I said motioning toward my shoulder.
“Alright.” He stood up, and grabbed his coffee in one hand and the to go box in the other. He thanked Joy and with a nod of his head in my direction said, “take care.”
    I stood gaping for a minute, watching the elderly man walk away, and the rodeo star in front of me resumed eating his sandwich. His bright blue eyes were darker than before the strange man had showed up. Somethin’ was eatin’ at him, that was for sure. I took a rag to the counter top again, wonderin’ what had happened while I was in the kitchen. Loud voices were able to be heard, but I couldn’t make out what was said. Across the cafe someone called for a refill on their coffee, and I hurriedly, yet distractedly grabbed the coffee pot and went to refill the cup.
    Later that night I sat on the porch looking at the stars and pondered the chance encounter at the cafe. All those years of watching the rodeo on the tv, and never once thinking, I want to meet him, no less thinking it actually possible. A footstep was heard behind me, and I turned to see my mother standing there, her apron still on, and her hair, which was usually in a tight bun behind her head, was frayed and a strand or two stuck out in several places. Her face wore a mask of exhaustion, and bags were seen under her bright eyes.
    “Can I join you?” I gestured to the seat next to me on the porch swing, as if to say that she could. She sat down as she explained why she came. “Grandpa told me you had a question for me.”
    Having forgotten my question over the excitement of the afternoon, I racked my brain and almost spilled my tea when I remembered. “Yes. I want to know why you don’t like the rodeo?”
    “I don’t know. Never found it interesting I guess.”
    “No not like that. Why don’t you want anything to do with it. You won’t let me watch it on tv, you won’t go into the cafe when it’s playing there, and you get upset when I talk about it. Why?”
    “Joy, I don’t want to go into this right now.”
    “You know, the longer you hold it all in, the more it will hurt.”
    “What on earth are you talking about? You sound just like your grandfather!”
    “Well maybe that’s because he told me that this has been a problem since before I was born. What’s wrong with the rodeo?”
    “I told you, it’s dangerous. I don’t want you gettin’ involved in something so dangerous. You saw what happened to that racer. Things could’ve been a lot worse for him.”
    As she talked it occurred to me that this was her most common and maybe only argument when talking about the rodeo. It’s too dangerous. So many people die from rodeo injuries. Stay away, I don’t want you getting hurt.
    “You lost someone to the rodeo didn’t you?” I said, barely above a whisper. I looked up and saw a single tear roll down her rosy cheek, warm from all the hours she spent in the kitchen. “Who?”
    She sniffed. “Your dad.” I had to strain to hear those words. Those words that came as a shock to my ears, and my protected heart.
    “You mean...he didn’t die because of-”
    “No.” Her voice was shaky, but she kept going. “He was a barrel racer, just like the guy you follow on the television. One day, something similar happened to your father, but he wasn’t so lucky. The horse managed to get up, and out of terror, trampled him. His lungs collapsed, and there was a severe amount of internal bleeding. There was no chance of survival.”
    I sat back, my mouth wide open and I fought back the tears burning in my eyes. I forced myself to close my jaw as I thought about this new information. All those years I thought he had died in a car crash. “Why did you cover it up? Why didn’t you ever tell me what really happened?”
    “Because it hurt to remember, so I made up something more common to reduce the pain. I’m sorry sweet girl.” I hugged her as I gave into the rush of tears.


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  • May 9, 2016 - 6:44pm (Now Viewing)

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