~Written by me, aged 10
Once there was a little brown and white pony. His name was Patch, because he had a great big patch over his right eye. He lived in a very large stable all alone. His owners name was Kathrine and they loved to go riding together.
One day when Patch was out in his field, he saw Kathrine's sister Georgina bringing in a white pony called Snowdrop. Patch looked at Kathrine as if he was shocked to see another pony was moving into his stable.
When he took Kathrine for their evening ride, Snowdrop and Georgina also went with them. They went to a large field where there were many other horses and ponies. Patch stopped and Kathrine jumped down off of him and told the man there their names. Kathrine then got back on Patch and they rode over to the starting line. The man started the race and all the horses and ponies ran like the wind.
Patch was in third place when they started, but he was slowly taking the lead. They only had one lap to go when they passed Snowdrop and now they were in the lead. Kathrine called to Patch, "come on boy, we can do it!" And then another horse just streamed past them and won! Kathrine said to Patch "At least we got second place and there's always next year to try again."
They went to the winners’ circle and were very surprised to see Snowdrop there. "What are you doing here?" Patch asked the little white pony. "I won!" she said. "I actually won something!" Patch walked away in disgust. He was very annoyed that a girl had won the race that he should have won.
When they got back to the stable, he was even more annoyed to find that she was here to stay and had been put in the stall right next to him! He decided there and then that he wasn't going to put up with this. So when Kathrine came to let him out in the morning he was going to run away! He didn't know where, but he was definitely going!
Kathrine came to feed them nice and early and Patch was disgusted when she fed Snowdrop first. "That's it!" he thought. "I'm going!" And as soon as Kathrine opened his door he fled. "Patch! Patch, come back here!, She shouted, but he just ignored her and jumped right over the gate and galloped off.
He slowed down to a trot and went on up the lane. He met another pony in a field. "Hello," the pony said. "What are you doing out on your own?" "I'm running away," Patch replied. "Because a new pony has come and took over my stable." "Where are you going?" the other pony asked. "It's none of your business!" Patch retorted and trotted off across the fields.
He hadn't gone far when he saw two boys playing at the edge of the field he was in and thought that he would like to join in, so he trotted over to them. "COR! What a smart pony you are," the biggest boy called to his brother. "Hey Mike, come and see this." "Can we take him home Mark?" Mike asked. "Please say we can." "Let's take him back to the yard and ask mum," Mark told his little brother. He took hold of the halter that was on Patch and led him to the yard. He walked with them good until Mark tried to put him in the barn and then he pulled free and galloped off across the field. "Catch him Mark, please," the little boy started to run, but it was no use Patch was too fast for him. Mike was very upset. Patch had gone on for a good few miles when he slowed his pace and only then did he realise how hungry he was.
He saw a big barn about two hundred yards away and decided that he would see if there was any food in it. He just walked inside, when suddenly a man appeared and threw a rope around his neck. He tried to get free, but the man was too strong and they showed him a big bag of oats. Because he was so hungry he couldn't refuse it. The man then put him into a horsebox and Patch heard the engine of a car start up and the horsebox started to move. Somebody was stealing him!
Patch was starting to wish that he hadn't been so jealous and run away. He was missing Kathrine so much that it hurt. He even started to like the idea of sharing a stable with that white pony.
Patch felt that he had been in the horsebox for hours when it suddenly stopped. A man came and opened the box and untied him, in no time at all Patch struggled free and started to run, but the fence he tried to jump was far too high for him. He hurt his right leg. "Whoa boy, come on, calm down, good boy," Patch recognised that voice! It was Kathrine! She had been looking for him. So nobody had stolen him he was going back to her! "Right," said the man that was there with them. "Let's take a look at this leg." Patch let the man have a look, after all he was a vet, and he knew what he was doing. "Superficial, nothing to worry about. He will be as good as new in about a week. No riding him for a few days, do you understand?" "Yes," Kathrine answered giving Patch a great big hug and she put him back in his stall and went to fetch him some fresh hay.
He poked his head out of the door and saw the white pony. "Hello Snowdrop," he said. "It’s great to be home and to have some company for once, and it's better to have second prize than to have no prize at all." He turned back into his stall and settled down to sleep off his adventure and when Kathrine came back with his hay, he was fast asleep!
AS TOLD TO KAREN PORTMAN
BY VICTORIA, AGED 10.