Nadalia wasn’t sure what to do. Somehow she had to get help, but she wasn’t about to make her way back to the village. She wondered where the horses had gone off to, she didn’t see either of them. Nadalia heard a sounded behind her and spun around. One of the horses stood in the roadway, it’s broken reigns hanging by it’s side, it’s saddlebag still held firmly in place. The reigns must have snapped off when the horses reared up. The horse was bleeding where the whip would have come down on it, and it was limping. Nadalia guessed the horse had hurt itself when it went down.
Nadalia walked up cautiously to the horse. It was skittish and she couldn’t blame it. Years of working in the stables taught her to calm a scared horse, but it also taught her that sometimes they couldn’t be calmed. She held out her hand, moving slowly. The horse pulled back and neighed. Nadalia stopped and left her hand out until slowly the horse came up to her. She made a shushing sound, hoping to calm it’s nerves further.
The horse moved back and forth until finally it let her place a hand gently on it’s side. “Shh, there there, it’s all right.” Nadalia kept one hand on the horse and made her way to the saddlebag. Master Grenlins always kept pencil and paper on him in case he needed to take notes. Perhaps it was in this saddlebag. Nadalia felt around and came up empty handed. She sighed and looked around, hoping to spot the other horse or at least a bag where the pencil and paper might be. There was none to be found. There was, however, a grove of birch trees across the road.
Nadalia grabbed one of the broken reins and tugged just a little. She was afraid the horse would take off for home if she didn’t hold on. The horse followed her to the grove, limping, but able to follow. She peeled a piece of bark off of the tree, then grabbed a small piece of twig. In the piece of bark, she sketched the words “Help me- M. Grenlins” and rolled up the bark. She stuck the bark into the saddle bag on the horse, then tapped the horses backside. “Get on now, go home.” The horse hesitated for a moment before taking off, half running, half limping as it went. She had done her part for Grenlin, more than her part really. With the horse headed in the direction of home, Nadalia dropped the twig to the ground and took off running in the opposite direction. She needed to find her parents cabin, and fast!