Magnificent Horse
Cynthia, Age 8, Scarborough, ON

Long ago all horses' legs were short, fat, and awkward. They would graze in pastures day by day and stay away from Mr. Cheetah. One day, a Mongolian horse called M.H. was cantering through the meadow only stopping to nibble on sweet smelling grass. She stopped occasionally to admire the lovely daisies and scented roses.

After a few hours, M.H. noticed some peculiar movement in the meadow… it was Mr. Cheetah! Oh no! M.H. changed gears and sped into her favorite pasture. She quickly disappeared out of the predator’s vision. But the young but smart filly knew her enemy was still on the prowl for her.

The moment she arrived at the pasture, she scanned the horizon for Mr. Cheetah. She didn’t find him, but knew he would be there any second. So, as a smart horse would do, M.H. kept an eye out especially for Mr. Cheetah.

Hours later, the excited Mr. Cheetah spied his prey. He jumped into position to pounce, when the surprised M. H. sped away to a crowded park. M.H.’s friends told her to run away and they would stop Mr. Cheetah. M.H.’s friends did stop the cheetah, but he escaped. Mr. Cheetah was right behind her when she reached Mr. Rias the bear. M.H. quickly dove into a big cornfield. She ate some oats and galloped away as Mr. Rias was gossiping with Mr. Cheetah. M.H. headed for the forest but she noticed Mr. Cheetah, so she turned. Mr. Cheetah was running full speed, he couldn’t stop and he pounced on a tree instead. Mr. Cheetah was so shocked that he froze in surprise. He was as mad as a hermit crab who had his shell taken off. Mr. Cheetah was thrashing around and hitting the trees. During that time, M.H. ran like wind. In a fraction of a second, she arrived at Mrs. Squirrel’s house… M.H. desperately needed a hiding place, but Mr. Cheetah caught up with her, so it was no use hiding. She was tired and thirsty. Just then, Mr. Cheetah’s best friend wanted to play hide-and-wrestle. M.H. drank and drank at the river. After a while, she fell into a deep sleep.

Mr. Cheetah crawled closer and closer to M.H. He inserted a potion into the horse which made her not to wake up until the sun rose. That was the time when the super secret attack began. He started by tearing of all the fur on M.H.'s legs. Then Mrs. Squirrel, who was asleep on M.H.’s back, woke up and skittered to tell Hawk the trouble.

Just when the hungry cheetah was about to take one fatal bite, Hawk swooped and grabbed on to Mr. Cheetah’s fur mercilessly. Mr. Cheetah yelped and ran away in pain.

After a while, all of M.H.’s friends gathered around her and waited for her to wake up. “She certainly is not dead,” growled an alpha wolf. “She is still breathing,” replied another alpha wolf. “Yes, yes, yes!” chorused the rest of the pack.

When the sun rose, M.H. woke up. Her friends told her the story. The frustrating part was that there was a new play that all the animals would be participating in. “I can’t go to the play like this!” cried M.H. Just when M.H. needed her, a deer ran by. “Why don’t you go to the wise man across the river?” replied the deer. The young horse decided to go. She promised a bottle of blueberry dye for Hawk and also a rose ribbon for Mrs. Squirrel. Last but not least, she promised everyone they would know she was safe by taking along the pack of wolves and Hawk.

The next morning, M.H. and her companions set off. By noon, they arrived at the river. Hawk flew over the river. M.H. jumped over the river, and the pack of wolves made a plank-bridge. In the animals' view, there was a magnificent palace. M.H. approached the palace and informed the guards that they wanted to meet the wise man. “Why, that’s our king!” exclaimed the guards.

The wise man was surprised to hear the story. “Oh! You poor filly!” he replied. At night, when the sky was a black carpet and the stars were lights, the wise man waved an emerald wand and drew a picture of a large muscular cheetah. He then mumbled a spell. The wise man told M.H., “Cheetahs will no longer harm you.” She fell asleep on the grass and the wise man left her with her companions.

The sun was bursting into the morning sky. Everyone thought the sun had never been as beautiful before. The wise man ordered the antelopes to keep Mr. Cheetah away from M.H. forever. Mr. Cheetah was ashamed and regretted trying to eat horses. The wise man commanded the great eagle to cure M.H. He said, “This will cure you but your legs will be thin.” Somehow, the eagle gave M.H. the most beautiful look she ever had by drinking the sacred waters of a rushing river. M.H. was graceful, slender, and just as muscular. What was so mysterious was that M.H. got so much speed. She ran like lightning when before she ran like the wind! Her coat was gleaming so that it looked like someone put sparkles into it. Gifts, the ones she promised, were given to M.H., carefully packaged in golden and silver containers. All the animals went home and the horses lived galloply ever after.

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