Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

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Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

Post  Rueben Westwood on Mon Feb 27, 2012 7:00 pm

The pull toward the stables was like a length of fishing line that was attached to the middle of his chest and tugged inexplicably at his rib cage. It drew him outdoors in the ugly, wintry drizzle, which messed up his hair and dampened his clothes. Nevertheless, he walked with his usual strut, trying to pretend he wasn't out in this ridiculous weather for this ridiculous reason. Today he was wearing blue slacks and a blue and white button-up shirt with the first three buttons undone; not exactly prime attire for walking in the freezing rain, but then, what was? Who planned to go walking in the frigid mix of ice drops and cold water that poured from the sky all too often at this time of year? This certainly wasn't his activity of choice. He would much rather be inside, curled up somewhere warm with someone pretty. But there was no denying this irresistible draw, this uncanny urge. It was annoying and irrational and impossible to ignore once it hit.

For the record, Rueben fucking hated horses. He never wanted to see a horse again. He wanted to make them all into glue. The thought of all the horses in the stables as bottles of uniform white glue made him smile...if only. But as long as the stables were there...they were warm, well, warmer than outside, and he didn't have anywhere better to go. Right? That was why he was there. Because it was cold and they were warmer than outside. So he slipped into the building and stood inside the doorway, trying to ignore the rustle of unrest that had already begun to run up and down the line of horses. Stop it, you ugly, dirty things, he thought, scowling at them. The nearest one, who had a white face, whinnied at him and bared its teeth. He wanted to repeat the gesture, but didn't want to stoop to the animal's level. What was their problem, anyway? Was it his smell? What could he possibly smell like that could upset horses like this? It bothered him, but he didn't know why it should. They were stupid animals; what irked them wasn't his concern.

Running a hand through his no doubt ruined hair, Rueben came away from the doorway and walked a little ways into the room, more towards the middle. That way, none of the angry little animals could bite him if they got the inclination to. He was never sure what to do once he got here -- the best option seemed to be 'burrow down in the hay and cry', but that didn't seem to be viable with all of these riled up horses stamping around him. Besides...what good would burrowing down anywhere be alone? That would just be more sad. He looked around for company; there was usually someone about in this place, someone fawning over these awful stinking beasts like they were sick children. Often it was the stablemaster, who was attractive in his own right, but didn't seem to be interested. His loss, really. Closing his eyes, Rueben tried not to breathe through his nose. It wasn't so bad in here. Really. He would just hang out here for a minute until the steady drizzle let up. This fragile illusion was shattered by a loud angry whinny from one of the horses. He jumped, and his eyes popped open, honing in on the vocal animal and glaring at it. So focused was he on the restless horse and his hatred for it, he didn't notice the person who was approaching him.
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Re: Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

Post  Bethany Lark on Sat Mar 03, 2012 2:43 am

She'd been trying to catch up with him for ages. Rueben was a slipper kind of guy. He always seemed to be there one minute, gone the next. Hard to get literally, as opposed to all those other ways. Beth seemed to be finding it oddly appealing. Like a game of Spy Vs. Spy or something, with an extra spy thrown in as the home's staff members. Beth would rather not be caught in a compromising position by her shrink again. Despite not being punished, Beth was largely convinced the woman hated her as a result. Why else had she never been called in for a session. Clearly the dark haired woman didn't want to see this little trouble-making whore of a girl. At least that was what Beth seemed to think lay within her mind.

So when Beth spotted the far off frame of Rueben Westwood she went to follow after him. Even though it was raining and cold. Raining and cold could very well be to their advantage after all. Fewer adults out and willing to get that wet dog smell about them. Beth kind of like that smell, a fact that was probably a bit strange. She like that it smelt like must and earth, like a fallen tree breaking down or something. She like the naturalness of that.

The little sweater she'd had pulled over her dress was already feeling damp as Ruben and the stables came into sight. But at least she had thick wool tights to keep her warm and combat-meets-fashion-meets-thrift-store type boots to keep her feet dry. The Stable. Beth wondered if the horses were inside, or maybe outside. Did horses like playing in the rain? They seemed like they might. But ever the city girl, Bethany really had no clue at all.

As she came into the stable a horse gave a sharp whinny. Beth responded with a little shocked jump, but it was further back in the room enough that the fright wasn't too bad for her. Rueben had turned to look in the direction of the sound. Perfect. Beth wanted to thank him personally. Without him she might have still been acting that sad mop of a girl, still insisting she had a boyfriend when he clearly didn't care. Beth quickly snuck up behind him and slipped her pale hands over his eyes.

"Guess who!"
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Re: Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

Post  Rueben Westwood on Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:26 am

Rueben jumped violently when two small hands slid over his eyes from behind, a jarring shudder that ran all through him. Half fright and half relief. His heart sped up; he hadn't been expecting company, as much as he'd wanted it to appear. After a calming moment, a knowing smile slid across his face, because he recognized that voice. It was Beth, Beth with the entrancing blonde hair, the huge eyes, the nervous fidelity to her nonexistant boyfriend. He knew that she'd come back eventually; it was just a matter of being available, letting them come to you. It was hard doing things that way, and it required patience, something which he had very little of. But Rueben had been busy, busy lately, and things had been slipping away from him, things he normally would have settled matters with ages ago. Not Beth, though, apparently, and he was glad of that. Their one kiss in the attic hadn't been nearly enough. He pretended to think for a moment, and then said playfully,

"I can't guess. Elizabeth Taylor? Harold Wilson? Beth? I hope it's Beth." He reached up and pulled gently at her fingers, rendered more than a little anxious at not being able to see the rows of irate animals all around him; just when he was peeking beyond the barrier of her hands, one of the bastard horses, maybe the same one, stamped its hooves at him and whickered. He gave it a dirty look, as if it understood his facial expressions, before turning around and putting on his most winning smile for Beth. She looked as lovely as she had the last time he'd seen her, despite her recent trip across through the rainy grounds, and it was a heartening sight. He was back in his comfort zone.

"What brings you out to the stables on this rainy day, sunshine?" Rueben asked, combing his hand through his hair again, his foremost concern being, as always, his appearance. The incomprehensible universe was definitely on his side today; sure, it had driven him out here in the rain to a smelly room full of spiteful horses, but it had also sent him Beth, and that was enough to make up for it. Now if only they could avoid being trampled to death before their conversation was over; perhaps taking it somewhere else would be better. But that would mean admitting that these horses hated him, and that wouldn't make him look very good, would it? Horses had intuition, after all. What did that say about Rueben as a person?
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Re: Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

Post  Bethany Lark on Tue Mar 06, 2012 4:28 pm

A giggle hit the air at Elizabeth Taylor. Then a squeak of protest when Harold Wilson came up. Beth batted her hand on the side of his head and giggled afterwards. Letting him pull her hands away when he admitted that he knew exactly who she was. His hands on hers' stepped up the situation a little. A little race starting in her mind: each thought a horse trying to nudge in front of the other and take her focus. It had been one thing to approach his back but having him turn to face her was a whole other thing. He was just so handsome. Things like the shine of his hair and the line of his jaw in clear focus now. The sharpness of it all making everything so very real and so much less hypothetical.

"Well, is it totally lame if I say I was looking for ya?" She said. Honestly was the best policy right? Or at least it was endearing maybe? Everyone wanted to feel wanted. Especially Beth, she wanted that so intensely it seemed to enrapture the entirety of her life. She gave her head a little flick, trying to get some of her long fringe out of her eyes. The rain made them heavier than normal.

"I just, I really wanted to thank you. I mean I was all stuck and psyching myself out and stuff. And you kinda shook me out of that. I am so indecisive, ya know? I am sure I could have hummed and hawwed on that for like, a year. Hell, maybe forever. Ha. I'm fuckin' hopeless." Another little head flick. Cutting herself off. Shut up, shut up. She was starting to sound pathetic. She forced a big smile. Like it was no big deal, even if she was sitting on the tail-end of one of her life's biggest heartbreaks. "Samson, he was just a prick. I shouldn't be wasting my time worrying about him. Definitely not."

"Anyways, I just owe you I guess. Big time." She shuffled her feet a bit, not sure of what else to say now that that was out of the way. The Weather? No... that was dumb.
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Re: Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

Post  Rueben Westwood on Fri Mar 09, 2012 12:57 am

The only thing more gratifying than being with a person was being with a person who had sought you out of their own volition. There was something invaluable in knowing that someone was thinking about him, was looking for him, actually cared where he was. Rueben couldn't quite put his finger on it, but it didn't matter, not now. All that mattered was this one moment, and then the one after it, and then the one after that. He couldn't afford to think too much.

"Not lame at all," Rueben said, shaking his head. This was just the kind of ego-stroking that he had needed right now; the universe really must have been doing him a favor. "I'm glad you found me; I've been thinking about you. But there's really no need to thank me. You would've figured it out on your own." The faux modesty was easy to see right through if you were looking out for deception, but who would be? He seemed so sincere, simultaneously engaged and engaging. Who could separate the real emotions from the fabricated ones?

"Your boyfriend definitely was a prick, though," he said lightly, even laughing a little. "Anyone who would abandon a girl like you is; I think I've said that before, but it stands repeating, I think." Rueben was completely oblivious to any pain Beth might have been feeling over the loss of her previous relationship, and, furthermore, he didn't really consider how she might have been feeling about anything but him. It wasn't as if he didn't care; it just didn't occur to him. His eyes flashed in a way that was hard to identify when she expressed how indebted to him she was. She did owe him, didn't she, and he knew exactly how he wanted to be paid back. But as he began to reply, the horse with the white face, whom he had put his back towards, lunged forward and tried to take a bite out of his ear. He yelped and jumped forward, grabbing Beth's shoulder to keep from falling. When he'd managed to pull himself together again, a process which involved a lot of straightening of clothes and deep breaths, he said,

"Let's get out of here, okay? These horses have a bad aura, you know?" He hated the horse for unsettling him; Rueben didn't want to appear anything less than collected for more than three seconds, and he certainly didn't want to be bested by a dumb horse in front of Beth, in front of anyone. The one with the white face was going to the glue factory first, if he ever got his say in things around here.
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Re: Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

Post  Bethany Lark on Sat Mar 17, 2012 1:37 am

She could feel a pressure in her cheeks. Slowly growing from the effort of keeping that big smile on her face. Waiting for him to bail her out of her rambling idiocy. As soon as his words broke into the air she relaxed a bit. Then any ill-at-ease feelings she might have had melted away with a few simple words. 'I've been thinking about you.'

It was like music to her ears. To know that it wasn't a one way street. She had tried to stop thinking about him, really she had. After all those accusation about her state of mind: how they'd called her jealous, delusional, obsessive... Well, there was a drive within her to prove them wrong. So she tried to focus on other things: her classwork, her photo collection, even her chores. But he certainly remained in her thoughts, as much as she might have tried to deny it, even to herself. But when a guy takes you on a mini-adventure, helps you out of a mental self-imposed crisis, and kisses you in an mysterious abandoned wing... he makes himself a bit hard to forget that way.

"Jesus! Crazy Fuckin' Horse!" Beth gave a little jump when the horse lashed out. She'd never seen one act like that before. Did animals PMS? Maybe the creature was just on the rag and moody as hell. "Yeah, let's go. I mean, what the hell. Crazy thing..." He was so close to her from when he grabbed her shoulder she could feel his breathe on her skin. She touched his arm as they turned to hurry out. Away for insane and unpredictable supposedly tamed wildlife.

A little smile returned to her face when they got outside. Half getting rained on, half sheltered by the line of the stable. She looked up at him, fairly happy again. The horses were a small glitch after all. There was a big campus before them. "Sooo... where should we go?" she asked, then she stepped out into the rain fully. Letting the cold drops fall where they may. "Maybe just go for a walk in the rain? We can see who get's hypothermia first? There isn't much else to do around here, right?"
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Re: Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

Post  Rueben Westwood on Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:36 pm

Rueben grinned at Beth, who appeared to have a wild streak after all. He knew she had to be one of those girls who would do anything with you for a thrill -- that was the only category of girl she could fit under in his head at the moment. He was glad that she didn't appear phased by the unpleasant moment with the stupid horse, that she blamed it instead of him for the one-sided altercation. A walk in the rain sounded excellent for more than one reason; for one, Beth looked amazing in the rain, with her beautiful hair wet and her clothes becoming sodden. Secondly, being cold meant warming up, and he knew a good way to go about doing that. Rueben didn't particularly want to mess up his hair and his clothes, but he swiftly decided that that was a risk he needed to take for this to progress to the next level. He stepped out into the rain beside the girl and took her hand, saying,

"Hypothermia doesn't sound particularly attractive, but I'm willing to go anywhere you want. Last time we decided to go on an adventure, we decided not to go to the woods...I bet they're cool when it's rainy." The trees would provide a respite from the appearance-destroying droplets, not to mention a very impressive degree of privacy unparalleled anywhere else on the grounds. The outdoors wasn't really Rueben's thing; he actually carried a great deal of disdain for mother nature. However, this was a really good opportunity, and he just couldn't pass it up because he hated trees and dirt.

Getting wetter by the minute in the cold drizzle, Rueben made to lead Beth toward the slightly forbidding-looking forest. He tried to make it more pleasant for himself by imagining the things he could do with Beth under the cover of the trees, but somehow that made it worse. Aunt Carol had liked to have picnics. There was never enough money to go out of the country, even out of city, hardly, but there was enough to take a car to the country sometimes and sit in the grass, eat in the grass, do other things in the grass... He looked at Beth, looked at her shiny hair and huge, luminous eyes, and smiled again. This day would turn out okay. He had escaped the stupid stables whole and complete, he had met up with an attractive someone who'd been looking for him and who was now willing to go on an exciting new adventure with him...this would definitely end well, if he let it. She would stay interested, he could get what he needed, and this would be a good day. Right?
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Re: Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

Post  Bethany Lark on Wed Apr 04, 2012 10:33 pm

Beth was happy to follow him through the rain. Rueben had such confidence. She felt safe with him, and excited for new things. This place so so dull, stifling. Anything new was a blessing: the kind that lit you up and made you tingle deep into your toes with delight. She happily took his hand in the rain and giggled as they joked about hypothermia. Ever glad he didn't seem to realize how entirely lame she was.

Because in her own eyes Beth was the furthest thing from the wild-side. Indeed she wished so badly she could be more so. Sure, she did the odd wild thing: she smoked weed when she could, she explored and dreamed of travelling. But to her none of that seemed all that daring. She never had much structure so to Beth all the bits and pieces of her life added up to a boat untethered. Drifting about, bumping against experience and taking bits a and pieces of a timeline with her. Adding up to her history. Her life. There was nothing daring about all that to her. What's there to be daring about when there are so few consequences to worry about.

As they nearer the woods Beth broke into a run. The rain had been fun for a time but now it was getting too cold. Chilled drops of water run the line along her bare skin beneath her loose fitting clothes. Individual drops sunk into her clothing begin to blend together, growing in force and trying to take their clothes over. Once under the cover of some of the trees: enough to cut the rainfall but not stop it entirely, she paused briefly to catch her breathe. Then looking around at the trees she took a couple amble-steps until her shoulder hit his. Transferring dampness between their sleeves.

"Wooooo... S'like an umbrella, yeah? Pretty good. So far so good." She gave her tongue a little click and grinned up at him. Despite the cool, dampness of their clothes she could feel the heat of his skin beneath it. A hint at what lay beneath. She reached up with her hand furthest from him and dragged all her wet hair up and over to lay across her furthest shoulder. It tried to stick to the back of her neck. The skin there was damp. A little glisten of water on her skin.

She turned to face him more fully and stood on her tip toes, planting a quick, sheepish sort of kiss on the corner of his lips. She wasn't sure she ought to, but she had been dying to. He was beautiful and he certainly seemed to care for her. She just wanted him to know without a doubt that the feeling was mutual.
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Re: Whoever Said a Horse Was Dumb... [open]

Post  Rueben Westwood on Thu Apr 05, 2012 4:15 am

Rueben kept pace with Beth, breaking into a run when she did. He barely noticed the cold rain except in his irritation at its mere existence; he was as eager to get out of it as she was, though probably for different reasons. Once they were under the canopy of shielding boughs, he combed back his soaked hair and hoped it didn't look too terrible. The smell of the wet trees and the damp soil underneath him made him want to wrinkle up his nose, but he didn't; instead, he focused on Beth. Her should bumping his. The way she pulled her hair to one side, leaving a trail of water droplets behind. Rueben was so busy watching her that he hardly noticed her coming in for a kiss until it had already happened. That was one of the most pleasant surprises he could have hoped to receive, and it lifted his spirits quite a bit. There was no going back now; if she didn't know it yet, she would soon. Beth had bound herself up in his spiderweb pretty thoroughly all by herself, not that she had known what she'd been doing. Rueben hadn't even known it himself until this very moment. He smiled, a genuine smile, caught up both her hands in his, and said,

"Come on." Walking backward, he drew her further into the forest. Where perhaps his shoulder should have bumped a tree or he should have tripped over a root, his limbs seemed to pass right through the objects. He didn't notice, and maybe she didn't, either. It wasn't as if he'd walked through a tree head on, and it was pretty dark under the cover of the branches. Maybe he was just especially graceful, or especially lucky. The other alternatives would seem too confusing, too far-fetched to consider. He finally stopped when they were a decent distance into the forest, the blackness grown deeper, the treeline in sight, but farther away. Rueben released Beth's hands and smiled his most winning smile, saying,

"I think I like it in here after all. It's kind of creepy, but it's...quiet. Private." His eyes never left her face, regardless of what he was talking about, and just when it was about to become the slightest bit creepy, he leaned in for another kiss, his hands finding their way to her waist. What were the odds of someone coming back here and finding them? Not good, probably, not in this weather, anyway. He was fairly certain that he finally had Beth all to himself, a certainty that he liked the implications of, but he could let himself be satisfied with the way things had gone thus far. Not yet, anyway. Not quite.
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