Chapter XLV

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It was the first morning at Stanley Hall since our arrival and before we emptied the house for the sport on horseback very early after breakfast I went off on my own to sneak a closer look at the horses since I had wished to ride one of them since Mr

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It was the first morning at Stanley Hall since our arrival and before we emptied the house for the sport on horseback very early after breakfast I went off on my own to sneak a closer look at the horses since I had wished to ride one of them since Mr. Howard surprised me that day in Bridgeston by interrupting my walk though then I was only a maid yet now as a lady at last it was acceptable that I rode one of them here in Stanley Hall.

"Good morning," I said to the stable boy, looking at the horses and their shiny different colored bodies from spotted gray, to brown, amber yet all of equally groomed airs.

"Good morning milady," he bowed and I walked in slowly as to not scare any of them, "I am almost done with them."

"Oh please take your time I came in early out of sheer curiosity, I am Lady Alice Stewart," I extended my hand introducing myself with no formality and he took it by nodding with a bow again.

"Lady Alice I picked a very sweet mare for you, would you like to see her?"

"Yes please," the thought somehow excited me.

"Here she is, this is... Charles? What are you doing here?" He said of the dog, it was Mr. Howard's dog just as the rumors said it was true.

"So this is Charles?" I observed as he tried to get under the skirt of my dress.

"Charles no, bad dog," he pulled Charles away from me but I still touched his head, he had named his dog after his favorite author, only a man with such peculiarities as Mr. Howard would do such a thing, for it was an insult to society to name a dog with a respectable name.

"Oh it is no bother, right Charles? Just curious of your house guests and so you should be, have you found anyone to your liking?" I laughed as it ran it's body against the sleeves of my dress.

"Milady I believe he is hungry may I?"

"Oh of course please do," he excused himself and I touched the mare who was ready to ride.

"And what might your name be? Your owner has a tendency to name his property with noble names so maybe Elizabeth after the queen? Victoria? Or Mary? No?" I talked to it whose color was a white kind of gray but had a black spot on its belly resembling of a heart.

"You have a heart? How wonderful, it must be wonderful," I said to have a whole heart there for all to see, unashamed of it she was and then I caught of glimpse of one horse who was locked in his stall and not saddled.

"Well who is that? Who is your friend over there?" I left my designated mare to go see the other one, this horse had a sturdier way of standing, his throat extended up from the rest in height agitating he huffed and puffed kicking the sides of the stall.

"Hi there," I said trying to approach the stallion without setting him off and saw the long flowing black and dark brown thick coat of hair, he must have been newly acquired for he neighed loudly and I kept a direct stare with him seeing the door was secure enough for me to go nearer.

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