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Falkirk Downs

Date: 09-07-08
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 1

Falkirk Downs Revival

There were a few things to see to as they were getting Falkirk Downs renovated to reopen, he needed to talk to some of the stable owners. Rory was already seen and so he sent out a note to Diane, whom he met briefly as well Melantha Quinn, whom he had yet to meet, to meet him at the Thistle; a convenient place for all so they could discuss registering their stables. It was a quiet afternoon, so far he was the only one here aside Alex and Hazel so he had something to eat. The plate set aside as he talked with the gentleman tender on various subjects being he had not gotten out socially a lot. He was attired fit for the day, loose fitting light moss green poets shirt, black pants and boots. The boots showed the signs of working earlier but he had washed up, hair still damp that was tied back.

Receiving the note from the Frasier man, Diane headed out of Golden Dawn earlier than usual, leaving the remainder of the day's work at the stable to her head groom and the hands. Cleaning up and changing her clothes into something more acceptable, a dress of light blue with a darker blue print. Tying her hair back into a neat tail, she went up to the Thistle to talk over stable registration and horses. Diane's favorite topic! Sandaled feet made little noise before she came through the door with a cheerful smile.

The royal stables were in fairly good repair but there were still some details that needed to be tended to, mostly minor repairs on stall doors and the like. The note gave her a reason to take a bit of a break, even if she really didn't need to have a reason. After cleaning up, she made her way to the Thistle. A poet's shirt was worn with a riding skirt and boots. Dark hair was still damp but she had braided it to keep it from her face. She followed Diane in, a smile on her face and curiosity in her eyes.

Hearing steps he glanced up using the mirror behind the bar. A smile already starting as he turned getting up from the stool and a few steps advanced away. "Good afternoon Diane, I'm pleased you could make the short notice. My apologies as I've been working from dawn to dusk getting things ready." Words barely out as another was right behind Diane. From the description given it was most likely Melantha. "Melantha Quinn I presume?" A hand out in gesture to a table off near one of the open windows offering a nice breeze for the warm day. Although hesitated to make sure of the woman's identity.

"Hello, Mister Frasier! Hello, miss." Diane caught sight of the woman behind her and included her in the greeting as she capered off to ask Alex for a glass of lemonade to quench her thirst from the warm day and the walk up from Golden Dawn. "What is it you're getting ready?"

"Aye, I am. " She chuckled as she faced the man. "And I'm guessing you're Patrick Frasier." She followed Diane to the bar, asking for a glass of iced tea for herself once Alex had served her. She would join him at the table then.

"It is a pleasure to meet you Melantha. Yes, I'm Patrick Frasier, in charge of Falkirk Downs for my family. Please meet Diane Cleary of Golden Dawn Stables. Rory McDonough was unable to make it today but I've already talked with him and his lovely wife." Taking the tankard of ale from where he left it on the bar to head over to the table that he might set it down as well turn out a seat for each of them. "Falkirk Downs racetrack," in answer to Diane's query. "We have been renovating the tracks, grounds and buildings to open up fully again. Regular races once a month with one where the citizens can race their own, riding their own horses."

"Lovely to meet you, Melantha." Carrying over her lemonade to join them, she was intrigued to hear of the renovations to the track and the possibility of new races. "So I could put the Golden Dawn horses to the test there?"

"Thank you." She thanked Patrick as she sat then grinned at the bubbly Diane. "It's a pleasure to meet you as well, Diane." Blue eyes shifted to Patrick and she nodded, interested in the fact there'd be races. "That's a grand idea and aye, a good way to test the horses." Pending the Queen's approval of course.

"Indeed," seeing them both seated before taking up a seat almost across from them both so he could speak easier and have eye contact with each. "Falkirk Downs was constructed about six years ago, a project my brother Danny and I took on. He is second born and with Neale away a lot, the responsibility falls on him plus a growing family. So, I've taken it on." Not getting into any other reasons as they were only ones supporting the decision. "Rory McDonough has his stable registered and I thought it would be better to meet face to face in meeting you both as well Melantha, Diane, in asking if you wish to have your stables registered with us?" He was also taking out a slip of paper that was folded over a few times to unfold. Something that might be of interest to Diane directly and indirectly for Melantha.

"If there's anything I can do to be of help with it, I will... I'd love to see Heathfield and the sister castles make a going concern out of racing. There's enough stables established," she nearly bounced in her chair with  enthusiasm, "that we could have quite a circuit going, and if you were to allow certain others from outside the kingdoms to race here as well... why, you could put other circuits to shame."

She watched as he took out the paper then smiled at Diane again, her smile growing into a grin. "I also like the idea of allowing the citizens to race. It makes it more personal." Was that the word she wanted? "There are other circuits?"

"If we expand that far, I will indeed need help. We would need inspection of the horses as well, I have yet to talk to Donovan McKnight as one of our veterinarians here. It was mentioned too there might be outside interest." Leaving any names out presently for they had not gotten that far. "It would mean setting up a more organized betting system, requirements, purses and prizes. I know that your stable as well as the McDonough stable withdrew from the other circuit for your reasons." Which didn't need to be gotten into. "Although this event was recent, they have run the horses from both your stables last evening. I have the results to share, which in the least would give you an indication which horses need working with."

"There are, Melantha. The Quest Coin Coalition had a circuit, but then they changed the rules to something so ridiculous that I withdrew my stable...." She blinked at Patrick, then nodded. "Thank you, I'd really like to know that information. Since that was the first race for a number of my horses."

"Ah, I see." Though she didn't know much about the coalition she just nodded then looked at Patrick, tipping her head slightly. She was interested in hearing how the horses did.

"So it seems. I was not really privy to information on them other than both stables withdrew." Concern edged green eyes a moment before dipping away to the results laid before him, one hand resting on the paper's edge. "In Race twenty-nine, Cinnamon finished in the field. Only maiden horse run that one. Race thirty, Smoky Trails' maiden race had him finishing up third. Race thirty-two, Bryda and Black Rose had their maiden race. Bryda came in third while Black Rose took the win." Giving a moment to look up between them before continuing. "Race thirty-three, Black Magic and Gypsy Prince ran their maiden race, both ended up in the field. Race thirty-four Harvest Gold and Blackmoor's Sage raced their first, Harvest Gold taking the win while Sage ended up field. The last race ended up a nice surprise for Brogan's horse Blue Lightning, he led with Renegade Star catching up to end up a tie for First. The win shared."

"Ah, so Blue had it in him after all. Brogan will be pleased." And so was Diane, since she'd been devoting the lion's share of her training time to him. "Well, so it's a mixed bag of results, but I can't complain too much. And I see where there's room for improvement. Thanks for getting those results!"

"Which ones are yours, Diane?" She looked toward her, lips twitching. It was good to see someone so filled with life!

"You're welcome, a few from here went last night just to see how they would do and sent me the results knowing I would be interested." Instead of waiting for the official ones to come out through the coalition. "They did well, I'm told that Bryda had head the race up to the very last stretch and only then did two others spur ahead. Would you like to be the one to let Brogan know?" He hadn't told him as of yet. Maiden races, new tracks, they had done well.

"I'd be delighted." It could definitely be said that Diane was a soul full of sunshine and mischief, but what did anyone expect of a Cleary, really? A grin at Melantha and she answered, "Sage, Black Rose, Black Magic and Blue Lightning race out of Golden Dawn. It sounds like Cinnamon wasn't raced yet."

"Impressive. It'll be fun to see them run at the race." She looked at Patrick. "You have my help too, if you need it."

"Race twenty-nine, she finished field." He had read off quite a few that it might have been missed. "She was the first raced of the maiden racers." Focus shifting to Melantha, "I would appreciate any and all help. We were use to more hometown races but if we should evolve into a circuit, having stables from other lands involved, then it will have to be organized a bit more in regulations but not so much it takes the fun out."

"I think, since we're offering opinions," she softened her words with an impish grin, "that inviting other out-Kingdom stables into form our own circuit would be a fine idea but we shouldn't forget the citizens here either, people who might want to try racing a single horse, or learn what racing is about. It may be called the sport of kings but there's no reason it shouldn't be accessible to others."

"Well, there is the race that's planned for that, right?" She looked at Patrick. "Will there be horses available for anyone who wants to ride but doesn't have one?" She could just imagine some of these horses folks might ride but well, the horses should have a chance too!

"You think much like I do, Diane. I would not wish to take out hometown from the Official Circuit day. It can be shared. In fact, an incentive for some to attend, the finale for citizens and guests to race, having the firsthand thrill after watching the while of the circuit race horses. In fact, how does calling the last the Hometown Race?" Then onward to Melantha, "that can easily be provided as well. I can have some extra horses on the premises as we have stables and the staff. We also have a dog track but we never got around to dog racing yet."

"Sounds good to me. And Melantha has a good idea... maybe we could suggest each of the stables, as part of their racing fee, provides a horse fit for racing that can be used by the citizens?" Unable to sit still any longer, Diane bounced up to pace, thinking a mile a minute.

"Dog racing?" She laughed as she watched Diane. "I remember some of the lads racing hounds back home. They'd have a grand time and the dogs seemed to like it as well. Are you still planning on doing that?" She was waiting to see what else Diane would come up with.

He turned the sheet of paper over to jot down some of these ideas as plausible. "Also, no citizen can race in the Hometown race one of the official race horses running in the Circuit, it would have to be another." Many would be mixed breeds but he was sure could race just fine against others. He started chuckling on something that popped into his head, he could see Charlie One Time entering her mule. "We are renovating those tracks as well, the whole grounds with the idea if the racing works out we can eventually have a dog race another night as well. 

"That's wonderful! Not everyone wants to race horses and dogs can be just as exciting when they race." Beaming with a smile, she was already brimming with ideas for races.

"We shall meet again as I need to get back. Thank you both and a pleasure to finally meet you Melantha," rising from his seat, "always good to see you Diane. I will see you both out at least part of the way. I'll be in touch,"seeing them both out as they all had things to do.

-e-

Patrick Murdough Frasier
Falkirk Manor and Downs of Ballicastle

Date: 01-14-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 2

Points Race

His crew was making sure the tracks were clear even with the light drift of snow coming down. Not a bad night at all during winter to run the four horses for points being they were at only one race. With the new changes decided upon, all horses would be running next race. Hence the reason to run this race. Patrick was walking along the fence looking over the track and any spots missed he alerted the crew to. He was bundled up, heavy woolen cloak of deep brown tweed, tunic of a deep green, shirt beneath tucked into heavy woolen black pants. Boots of a fine lined leather laced up. A bit cumbersome but staved off the cold, cold it was as his breath frosted with each released. Bayda Farasha, Shooting Star, Court Jester and Casey were being warmed up while the tracks were seen to.

Gus was out and about, enjoying the snowfall and the evening. He knew there were horses to be run tonight and made his way toward the track to watch. Dressed warmly, he wore a cloak of black lined wool, a heavy sweater knit of the same, dyed a dark blue, with a lighter shirt beneath. Woolen pants were tucked into laced up leather boots. He wasn't sure who was moving along the fence but made his way over to Patrick anyway. The walk was vaguely familiar even though he was bundled up as heavily as his cousin.

He caught sight of his cousin giving him a wave as he veered away from the track to intercept. Clan grip of his shoulder by a gloved hand before falling away to sweep in the direction of the tracks. "We had wondered if we could hold the races during the winter. So far it has been good as long as we keep the tracks cleared. I have workmen that clear it around the hour when snowstorms hit. Sawdust and hay keep ice from becoming a problem."

Gus was being followed as Brogan had the night off from the Casino and wished to catch up with some of his kin. A grin surfacing as he realized where he was headed, just the place he was thinking of at least stopping by. He too heard some of the horses were going to run although not an official betting night. Patrick might see him coming as Gus' back was to him at the moment. Or, he'd feel the clasp of hand to his other shoulder from behind. Nothing said yet, let Gus wonder that fraction of a second.

"Good. With the snow being almost continuous, I imagine that's quite a job." He grinned at Patrick then cast a quick glance over his shoulder at the touch of another hand. Of course his hood blocked his vision so it was pulled back quickly. The grin that had faded returned. "Brogan. Did Charles finally chase you out of the casino?"

"Welcome this night Brogan," stepping around Gus to clasp the other cousin's shoulder in greeting. With a question posed he didn't interrupt with any of his own. It was then that he also got the signal from the flagman the horses were entering the stalls as the tracks were ready. "Join me up in the Tower." What the announcers place ended up being called. He was quick to depart, a rush up the stadium bleachers to the top and up the flight of steps taking him to the Tower. Torches were being lit around the track as well the one section of the bleachers were a few others had come by to watch the horses race. There might not be any official betting but there would be plenty of private betting going down.

"Indeed. I have a few days as I took over the past number of ones while he took care of some business." Business he was not privy to and didn't need to be as they had their private lives and such was respected. There was enough they told each other as certainly they had become friends. I'll place ten copper on Court Jester to come in before the one you pick." Wagering against Gus with a grin. It was a modest, friendly bet that would hurt neither to lose.

"Hmm, in that case, I'll go with Shooting Star to come in before Court Jester." He grinned then followed Patrick up into the Tower room to watch the horses run. He glanced behind to see if Brogan followed.

He was at Gus' side, making the bet as they followed in Patrick's wake. He was impressed with the view once the Tower was reached. Gave a low whistle under his breath. Enclosed as well so they didn't freeze. A pot belly stove in the corner he was over to add another log so it didn't burn down too quickly. "Nice place you got here Patrick. I think instead of the bleachers I might be joining you here, if welcome."

"I don't mind at all. In fact I would welcome the company. Although while announcing you wont be able to get too rowdy or the whole stadium will hear you!" A chuckle came with a grin as he was keeping an eye on the track and his flagman. "Maybe I'll get you to announce a race, give me a quick break." Especially if they ended up with four registered races as rumors went, more horses might be coming into some of the stables. The three pregnant to have their foals soon and back to racing. Picking up the megaphone mouthpiece, now worked through one of the windows, he called out making sure it was working properly. "Attention please, the position point race is about to begin. No official betting but enjoy the race if you want to place personal bets." Taking a breath, "in the first gate we have Bayda Farasha, second, Shooting Star, third, Court Jester and fourth, Casey. The flag is down, the gates are up and the horses on their way!"

Nice and cozy. He grinned over at Brogan then turned his attention to the race, watching the horses take off.

"We have Jester out in front with Shooting Star and Casey not far behind. Bayda seemed a little dazed and confused." Announcing as hooves pounded the track. "We have Casey shooting ahead from behind passing out both Jester and Star, Star getting a head of Jester as well and Bayda is having a slow night." Keen-eyed watch as they came rounding the one end, "Casey is keeping the lead but Shooting Star is determined to catch up, Jester in third place and Bayda still lagging behind." Coming down the second half, "Casey is out a good distance in the lead with Shooting Star still keeping second position, Jester in third and Bayda picking up some speed into the final stretch." It was a good race in who would win it even if only for points in speed. Then the final in. "Shooting Star was determined as she passed out Casey to take the Win. Casey in second with Jester in third, Bayda in last. Although Bayda was starting to pick up unfortunately too late."

"Holy .... " He stared at the horses then laughed. "You owe me ten coppers, Brogan." Determined little mare.  He looked at Patrick after his declaration to Brogan. "It amazes me how they don't seem to mind the cold like we poor human types."

"I think if you were running like them, you'd not feel the cold either." He fished out the ten copper to hand over to his cousin. "Remind me not to bet against you again. Now, Ham is another matter.." grinning as he took a glance out over the field. "I think it is time for me to get back. I'd stop at the Thistle but I have a few things to see to before I can find my bed tonight. Maybe one of these days the reason will be a good one like having a lady fair to see."

"I think we're all in the same boat, Brogan. Must be a new curse on the Frasier men or all those to be blissfully married are taken up." In short he was resigned to the fact of being alone, he had his work and enjoyed it too.

He chuckled as he took the coins and pocketed them. "I don't always have this kind of luck, but I'll try to remember to remind you." He clapped a hand to Brogan's shoulder. "If I don't see you again soon, I'll come to the casino. Maybe drag Patrick out." Gus didn't say anything about a lady fair. He was still dealing with his feelings for one lovely dusky skinned lass.

"I'm in need of a drink. We can walk you back as far as the Thistle, provided Gus here is going that way as well?" He could leave as his men would see to closing up the tracks and making sure everything was in order before taking their leave. Moving to the stove to stoke it down before heading out, locking the door to the Tower behind them.

"Aye, I can use a drink as well." He had caught up with his orders pretty much and there was no need to rush back to his shop or flat.

"Sounds like a good plan to me," heading out with Patrick as he'd enjoy their company on the way back even if he didn't stop at the tavern. Mostly because he knew if he did, he'd be staying longer than planned. How it always worked out.

-e-

Patrick Murdough Frasier
Falkirk Manor and Downs of Ballicastle

Date: 01-20-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 3

January Races

The races were starting a few minutes late for they wanted to make sure the tracks were dry for all the snow that had be cleared this day. At least falling snow had become very light, more a shimmering. Patrick was up in the Tower as he tested out the megaphone. "WELCOME, WELCOME THIS NIGHT TO FALKIRK DOWNS" which came out loud and clear, enough that the men vacating the tracks looked his way, some waved or gave the thumbs up. The jockeys were getting the horses out to the gates as he called out the names of those racing. "In our first race, starting with gate number one, and on down, we have Golden Lady, Bayda, Cinnamon, Spartan, RW Blackbird, Windchaser, Rag Doll, Silent Thunder, Blacke Magic and Jack."

She'd just wolfed down a bowl of stew at the Thistle, rather quickly and chased it with juice. Buttercup's quick gait worked like burping a baby with all the bouncing. Gaelle let out a tiny burp that sounded slightly froggy. She rode over with Charlie and it was Charlie that she sent the surprised look to. "I hope no one heard that." She heard the announcers though and was quick to slide off of her mare's back once they were close to the tracks. There was a bounce in her step, even as she tugged her thick cloak around her.

Charlie chuckled hearing the loud speaker, "I doubt it ... " looking like a wooly bear mounted on a mule, covered with her cloak.


The elf was excited to see the races again, the first having been so much fun. She scurried over to the race tracks as quickly as she could so as not to be late, wrapped up in her fur-lined cloak, her cheeks a bit rosy from the chilled air.

Broch was already there in the stands, surrounded by the big fur cloak he wore and woolen blankets spread out on either side of the cleared bleachers. He was hoping for company as his brothers couldn't make it this night. He was dressed warmly beneath and had a couple canisters of hot chocolate in a basket, things to nibble on as well. Noting Gaelle, Charlie and Pyper he waved them over.

Henna hadn't had bet on any of the horses but she wanted to watch them run. She met Gus on her way to the track and he kindly agreed to escort her. "I think I made us late," she said laughing as she stopped her horse and looked toward the track. "Should we run?"

"Not too late. " He grinned as he helped the Princess down from her horse. "Let's go visit Patrick in the tower, though we'll have to be quiet." He then escorted her up the steps and inside. Greeting Patrick with a wiggle of his fingers, he took up a lean to watch the race.

Dismounting was just a matter of sliding, leaving the cloak behind to keep the old mule warm, but she had another one, which is why she looked like a bear, "oh look it is sweet lips " she teased Gaelle.

Gabriel was with Melantha down near the gates as most of her horses would be racing, "how are the pregnant ones coming along," he near forgot to ask as they finally caught up with each other. Both had been busy.

"Pyper, hello!" Greeting her as she started into the stands. She spotted Broch's wave and eased that way. She grinned at him and nearly tripped over herself when she heard Charlie. "Shh!" She laughed as she settled down beside Broch. Warm in a sweater of deep green and dark brown pants, she even wore her jewelry tonight but was a little nervous about the bracelet falling off.

She chuckled at hearing Charlie too, and seeing Gaelle's reaction. "Evening Broch, Gaelle, Charlie." giving a smile to them all.

Charlie just chuckled, it had not been loud. "Evening Broch " waving to Pyper, and a few others if they were looking.

She nearly giggled when he asked, eyes bright as she looked up at him. She had been waiting for his question. "All three foaled after you left on Sunday. I tried to catch you yesterday to tell you but you were busy. Two little fillies and a colt." She gave him an impish look. "Missed you yesterday." Funny how the day went slower when she knew she wasn't going to see him.

Someone else was making her way into the stands. Dark skinned and huddled under what looked like a mound of clothing. Deep maroons and golds draped her along with a head scarf. Not alone, she settled into the stands with her guard. The brute of a man taking place behind her.

"Eve'in tae yea ladies," grin tucked within the trim beard. "A guid nig't tae huddle w'ile watc'ing t'e races." He waved Banafrit and her guard over. "Come sit wit' us, t'e more t'e merrier."

"How are you, Pyper?" Questioning her with a smile.

Patrick gave Gus and Henna a smile as he kept an eye on the flag man. Red flag was up waving in the light breeze before it went down. "And they're off!"

"Doing alright," replying with a smile, "how about yourself?" though she had an idea already.

Waving caught her attention and she blinked her dark eyes in response before she moved. Abe followed and they both settled down near Broch and his group. "Pleasant eve," she murmured. A smile slanted in Pyper's direction.

She grinned at Patrick as they entered the tower, looking around briefly. She did know Gus' horse was running but it would take her a while to remember which horse belonged where.

Charlie twisted to hearing they were off, looking to see what the ground looked like, and how the horses were moving, smiling as she noted a few more familiar faces.

The rush of horses was always a thrill, "Spartan takes the lead with Windchaser and Blacke Magic not far behind. Blackbird and Silent Thunder seem to have trouble at the gate."

So far so good. Gaelle clapped her hands excitedly.

"Spartan is still in the lead with Windchaser determined to catch up, Blacke Magic not far behind as well Jack."

Of course Thunder would pick tonight to not do well. He chuckled as he watched as the stallion seemed to be stalling.

If he had heard Charlie's comment it would have opened up the night for teasing. "Pleasant eve tae yea lass, I'm Broc', t'is bae Gaelle, C'arlie and Pyper." Although he wasn't sure if he had met her as he studied her a moment before distracted back to the race.

Banafrit's first race. She watched with a neutral expression that gave way to a slow curve of a smile. Abe was the excited one, behind her, belting out a hoot out of nowhere that made her glance his way. She glanced towards Broch. "We have met. Once. I am Banafrit al-Dawla, pleasure to meet each of you." Of course, it was hard to tell who was under all of that clothing, wasn't it?

The elf's excitement mounted as the horses took off, deep sapphire eyes alight as she watched.

He moved closer, slipping his arm around her, "missed you too, you can keep warmer this way." She might well notice the devilish smile with a dip of dark eyes her way then up to the horses.

Horses had off days like people did, she shifted her gaze from those stalled, at the gate, to those racing, watching the movements of the long legged creatures and the jockeys. "Good evening " she grinned to Banafrit, suspecting that she was related to that hot handsome one, that Charlie had meet eons ago.

"Warmer is always nice." She snuggled up against him, watching Windchaser. She sure liked to run.

"Good evening! I bet you're all nice and warm. Is that your father?" Go Gaelle. She made a motion to Abe.

"Windchaser has caught up to be neck and neck with Spartan, Jack is not far behind as well Golden Lady and Blacke Magic."

Charlie giggled, glancing at Abe, aware that the family had bodyguards. "Lucky man he would be if he was " she mused.

She was fascinated as she watched, not only the horses but the spectators as well. It looked as if they were having a grand time.

All of Abe's hooting promptly ceased. He sent Gaelle a look of surprise then barked out a loud laugh. "He is my guard," explained Banafrit. "His name is Abe." She offered this to the others that might not know, either.

"Windchaser has spurred ahead taking a big lead, RW Blackbird also upsetting the line moving into second place, Spartan just behind. Jack, Golden Lady with still a chance as they head for the finish line."

Gaelle nodded slowly, looking quite apologetic for her mistake! She almost added something else but wisely managed to keep her trap shut. She did grin over to Charlie though, and Pyper too, then turned back to watch the races.

Charlie just winked, whether at Gaelle or Banafrit or Abe was always something to guess at. "Dang that Windchaser has a burr in his butt," meaning he was running good.

Hmmm. He might have the doc look over Thunder. He didn't seem as lively as usual.

She grinned back, then turned back to the races.

"And we have it! Windchaser takes the win with Spartan to Place and RW Blackbird to Show."

"Woohoo!" Gaelle was the hooting one then!

Gabriel might have to cover his ears. Not only had Windchaser won but RW had taken third.

"There be whoo whoos loose," she chuckled, nodding her head, watching Windchaser and RW Blackbird.

"Aye, I bae wonder'in iffin we 'ad met." Pretty face but there were a few Egyptians with pretty faces, a few other ladies as well. Oh, he enjoyed the sight of a pretty face too but normally he would have remembered. He was slipping. That crossed his mind but he didn't take it to wondering at the moment. Chuckling as he handed Gaelle one of the canisters with hot chocolate in it. He was making use of his flask filled with potcheen.

"Redwing Blackbird finally made it!" He was thrilled for this was the best his stallion had done. Only proved he had it in him. "Two fillies and a colt all in one night. Seems it was a busy one for you. Didn't Gaelle win one?"

She laughed hearing Charlie! And made a low hooting sound, like an owl. She glanced over at Broch when he handed her one of the canisters. "Thank you. Did you spike it?" Teasing! She couldn't help it. "Are you racing tonight, Pyper?" Thinking to ask.

She shook her head. "I don't think so, not this time." but maybe the next.

Charlie listened to see who had bets placed, and who had won, amused by the hooting.

"I am quite honored to have you here tonight Princess." Dark green eyes turned on Henna with a respectful bow of his head. "I hope you enjoy the races. I see you have met my cousin."

"Aye, she did. She'll have to come and see them and decide. Then once her choice is old enough, she'll be able take it." She chuckled, "And I'll offer to train it too."

The horses were being cleared from the tracks and the crew quickly out to rake them as the ones in the next race were getting situated at the gates. The megaphone was lifted as he announced the next line up. "In our second race tonight, we have Phantom Flame in the number one slot, then the rest to follow, Blue Lightning, Gypsy Prince, Ala' al Din, Casey, Cream-n-Sugar, Smoky Trails, Shaya, Legacy & Lace, Blackmoor's Sage and Court Jester. The second and third races will have eleven racing."


"Indeed I am." He would have received a curtsy had Henna been wearing a gown, but she was quite comfortable in woolen pants and a feminine tunic of red. "I met Fearghus when I bought a bow for one of my brothers."She turned to watch again. "How do they come up with such interesting names?"

He watched for the flag man as he made sure they were ready before the flag was down, the gates opened, "and they're off!"

"I have no idea. Thunder was named already or I'm sure I would have named him something dull." He leaned forward again to watch.

"We have Gypsy Prince and Ala' al Din neck and neck at the on start, Phantom Flame and Legacy and Lace not far behind."

She took a sip from the canister, her attention focused fully on the track.

He offered Charlie and Pyper a canister of hot chocolate each then would offer such to Banafrit and her guard Abe.

Charlie was watching the horses again, aware of the names, but not saying how most horses got their names. "Ahh thank you Broch " she grinned, taking the hot chocolate.

Surprised by Broch's offer, though Banafrit had this.. odd quirk about her. She glanced up to her guard and he was the one that took both canisters before passing one over to Banafrit. "Thank you," she said. And ever helpful Abe, not wanting Broch to be offended, leaned to speak low. "She will not take anything from another man's hand that she does not know well." Quirky, yes.

She grinned."Thank you Broch. Very thoughtful."

"We have Ala' al Din taking the lead with Phantom Flame close behind, Casey not too far behind Flame as well Shaya."

"Isn't Gypsy Prince one of Joe's horses?" Not sure who was who really, just recalling the name.

"It's good. The hot chocolate." Mentioned to Pyper and Charlie. She lifted her own canister, then suddenly had an odd expression before it faded. She watched Charlie with a grin. "I can't recall. It's one that I bet on, though." She laughed.

"Well maybe you will get lucky," she grinned to Gaelle.

"I did in the last race. Twice." She held up two fingers, her voice quiet!

"Hot dog ... I need to give you money so you can bet for me." She never bet much, not always a winner.

"Casey has passed out Ala' al Din putting Ala in second with Smoky Trails coming up from behind."

She cracked up laughing. "You and Pyper should place bets sometimes. Though it makes this even more addictive," she admitted.

Ala was one of her aunt's horses so she was yelling again. She had started to get worried about her training!

Pyper shook her head at that. "I don't think I would be very good at it." She was content just having fun watching.

-c-

Patrick Murdough Frasier
Falkirk Manor and Downs of Ballicastle

Date: 01-20-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 4

"Casey has taken a good lead but will he hold it to the finish? Ala' al Din is not far behind with many vying for third, Smoky Trails and Shaya a nose ahead as they head for the finish line."

"Uh huh. I will give you some coppers," she chuckled.

"Hey now, I don't win all of the time." She went through a slump for a few races, in fact!

The horses seemed to prance off the track, and she chuckled, delighted.

"The final results are in. Casey takes the Win with Ala' al Din to Place and a surprising upset with Shaya to Show!"

No, it was two as Shaya pushed ahead! She gave Gabriel an impulsive hug!

Broch wasn't offended as he noticed the taking of the canister by Abe in that quick way. Giving a nod to Abe before a flash of a smile then nudged Gaelle, "did any o' yea 'orses yea bet on come in?" He forgot the sheet with the ones he bet on, but the money was going to the Orphanage if any of them won.

Charlie applauded the horses, they worked hard. Smiling at Gaelle. "Yeah but you get here more often then I may be able to," which was true.

"Not this time. Maybe next race." Just because, she gently nudged him back, grinning up to him. "That's true." Offered to Charlie.

He swept her up into his arms and once around before setting her to the ground. Even encumbered with bulky outerwear he made it look like a breeze.

"W'o 'ave yea bet o' t'is race?" So he knew who to applaud.

She laughed out loud then watched as the horses were walked to cool them down. After that, it would be time to pamper each of the horses, win or lose.

"Uh." She had to think. She squinted her eyes. "Altair, Justified Silver, Drop the Act and Wrong Turn." She tilted her head. That sounded about right.

It appeared that a few had won from the hugs and what not that she saw, smiling as she sipped the hot chocolate, tasty after the supper they had.

The horses were off the track and it was racked by his crew of six men as the others were getting ready at the gate. "For the last Registered race we have starting at gate one then on down, Black Rose, Hunting Demons, Red Knight, Harvest Gold, Altair, Ash and Stone, Wrong Turn, Justified Silver, Renegade Star, Drop the Act and Shooting Star," he watched as the man with the flag brought it down. "And they're off! We have Wrong Turn taking the lead with Ash and Stone close behind, Hunting Demons, Altair and Shooting Star."

Banafrit's attention perked as the next race started. She scooted forward on her seat, folding her hands together as she watched.

"We have Wrong Turn and Ash & Stone neck to neck in the lead, Shooting Star then Altair and Drop the Act."

Gaelle grew still, her attention certainly on the race.

"Drop the Act has come up from behind to take the lead with Ash and Stone close behind. Justified Silver, Shooting Star and Wrong Turn."

She leaned forward to watch again, giving the quiet Gus a quick smile. Again she was impressed with the speed and beauty of each horse.

She got all wiggly. Her hips and spine. It was hard to stay still. She widened her eyes and even held her breath for a second!

Charlie glanced at Gaelle. "Better let that out or bust a gut," she teased. "Poor sweet lips would be heart broken." She giggled ... oh yeah she did.

"Drop the Act is keeping his lead with Wrong Turn coming ahead to second, Ash and Stone close behind as they head for the finish line."

Even if she didn't care for the cold, tonight had proved to be quite pleasant. She heard Charlie and wasn't sure who Sweet Lips was, there was a soft laugh from her.

Even old sweet lips didn't know who he was ...yet.

The wiggling stopped momentarily. Just because she sent a very brief wide eyed glance to Charlie. She snuck in a glance Broch's way. She wondered if he was even catching on. Oh, the blushing!

Winking at Gaelle, "one must assume it is because of the chocolate," waggling brows.

"And the final is in, Drop the Act takes the Win with Ash and Stone to Place, Justified Silver to Show."

"Charlie!" She stammered out her name and laughed. Then let out a happy hooting sound for the winners. She tried to clap, but it wasn't easy with the canister in her hands.

Charlie applauded.  "Yes Gaelle," trying to look totally innocent.

He couldn't remember who he had bet on, having left the paper in his shop but he'd find out later. He nodded though, smiling as he shifted from his lean. "Another good race, Patrick."

She clapped for all the winners.

Wasn't working. Gaelle sent her a look, blushing still. But even looking her way caused her to start laughing again.

Well Gaelle hadn't said it was secret, smirking as she heard Gaelle laughing.

"That was wonderful." She might try betting herself with the winnings going to the orphanage or the schools. Right now though she was applauding.

While the tracks were being raked he called out through the megaphone. "Now, for those wishing to enter the Hometown Race, please let the Flag man know and the name of your horse."

A horse from the stables had been in the top three in each race. She was ecstatic!

Charlie was waving her hand to Patrick. "Yoo who!"

"Sweet lips?" He'd been focused on the race as burnished green eyes turned on Charlie, "yea bae speak'in o' yea beau t'en?" Teasing her as he was up. He would be riding Hercules.

Patrick gave Charlie a wave back then motioned to the Flag man out by the racing gates. There were a few horses there as well if anyone needed a mount.

Uh oh. She cleared her throat and peered up at Broch, standing too. "You're the only man that's kissed me lately." Very low! Through a grin. She turned away from him, flipping her long hair over her shoulder. She was heading down to give her name and the horse she rode; Buttercup, of course.

"I listened," she grinned to Broch. Charlie was heading to where ever she was suppose to for the race riding. Deciding that she could get even some how some way.

She had brought Cloud Dancer again and gave Gabriel a look. "Are we racing tonight?" Not quite batting her lashes at the handsome knight.

This was the real reason Henna had come. She wanted to watch the Hometown Race.

"May'ap t'en I bae drink'in potc'een and 'ave intoxicat'in lips instead o' sweet next time." Which meant the possibility of another kiss!


She was waiting for a comment from Charlie on that one. She knew one was coming! She blinked her eyes slowly. "Not too intoxicating I hope. I might pass out." She should keep her mouth shut sometimes. Soon enough, she was on the back of Buttercup, pacing her around and waiting to see which gate to take.

"Henna, will you be riding in the Hometown Race?" Trying to encourage the Princess to get involved, have some fun.

Charlie wasn't worried about which pair of lips there were intoxicating or sweet, chuckling at the mischief started. Charlie was lucky to have a horse in the area, not just a nag, but still not a winner.

Mel headed for where the Arabian was waiting and quickly mounted. She grinned at Gaelle. "There are three foals waiting for you to take a look, Gaelle. All three mares decided to deliver on the night of the full moon."

"Aye, we're here and no reason not to." He escorted her over to the Flag man, leading Rapscallion to register. Once done, he mounted up. "A bet? If I beat you, no matter who wins, I get a full course dinner..."

She blinked and looked at Patrick then laughed. "Well, I hadn't considered it but ... " Giving a shrug of slender shoulders. "She's called Lady Moon." And had been a gift so don't ask about the name.

Melantha surprised her. She dropped her jaw lightly. "All in the same night? How exciting. I will look at them soon. But I want to give them a little time to settle down, the mother and foals." She grinned hearing Gabriel's wager.

She was getting up on that nag too, chuckling to herself wondering what else she could get into before she was making a mad dash down the track.  "Well Gaelle ...how much grain has your beastie had?" Wondering what might happen yet for the night.

Pyper giggled as seeing everyone who was preparing to race. Would be a good one.

"Uhm.. I don't know Charlie. Is too much a bad thing? Are you saying my horse is going to be gassy?" She had no idea where she got that last bit from.

"Cooked by me?" She asked with a dimpled smile, then nodded. "Aye, all three." She'd swear it was the magic of the land. "Two lasses and a laddie." And back to Gabriel. "If I beat you, then you get to cook me dinner." He said he could cook!

Since Charlie rode just about anything that didn't buck her off, she pat the horse "Thunder Butt, huh?"  Leaning to look back, seemed a bit small considering. "Well,  I was thinking maybe we could light a match and see if it was propelled faster?" she teased.

"How about you, Gus?"

"Will yea bae rid'in as well, Pyper?" Hoping she joined in the fun.

The other riders were soon joined by the Princess and her white horse.

Charlie.. cracked..her..up. "Try it on one of the men's horses. Their horses are always lazy." Teasing.

She shook her head at Broch. "Not tonight.... I don't have a horse." But she was content to just watch and cheer them all on.

He shook his head, laughing. "No, I'm going to watch, thanks." His horse might fall over if he tried to race him.

"Aye, t'ere bae four extra down t'ere to make use of." Unless she really didn't wish to race tonight but not having a horse should not stop her. "Yea could ride Thunder Thighs.." sliding a glance from her to Gaelle. "And would yea bae want'in tae make a bet wit' me?"

Charlie nodded her head, "I thought about that, but they are bigger then I am," like it mattered who she lit up, well in that gaseous way ....

"Thank you... but if I do... who will be here to cheer you all on?"

She looked over to where Pyper sat. "We'll cheer each other on while racing." Or something! Charlie had her laughing again and her attention tipped towards Broch. "If you'd like to bet again, yes, but should I remind you of your win and loss ratio?" Sassily. She was giving him a good tease, only that. "So, you want to wager big or small?" She grinned.

"I can hear it now, Broch on those Thunder Thighs heading down the track, with a head in the lead," she chuckled.

"The bet is on," grin turned on the others as they all gathered to be led into the starting stalls. "Good luck to you all but better luck to me that I beat Melantha!"

"We have Gaelle Thorpe riding Buttercup in gate number one, then Broch riding Hercules in gate two, Charlie on Thunder Butt in gate three, Gabriel on Rapscallion in gate four, Melantha on Cloud Dancer in gate five and last but not least the Princess Henna riding Lady Moon in Gate six."

Charlie just let the horse have it way, waiting for that moment to yee haw.

"Aye, so bae a better c'ance I bae beat'in yea. Can yea cook?" He heard Gabriel's bet and food was always good with him!

She laughed when she heard Gabriel and he was lucking he wasn't close enough for her to swat. She had Cloud settle into the right spot and waited.

Gaelle's jaw dropped a little when she heard the announcement. A princess was racing! She became even more excited. "Yes, I can cook." Answering Broch. "If you win, I'll cook for you. If I win, you cook for me. Deal?"

"Deal," getting it in under the wire. "Yea 'ear t'at Hercules, I win, I get fed and yea will get extra oats tae." It was not beneath him to bribe his horse!

She wrinkled her nose. She could hear the bribing going on.

He waited for the flag man who seemed to be listening to the group, giving them a few extra minutes for this was the Hometown race for fun. Once it seemed they were settled and ready, bets made, the flag went down, the gates opened and they were off, or suppose to be! "And they're off!"

She jumped and cheered as they started off....

-c-

Patrick Murdough Frasier
Falkirk Manor and Downs of Ballicastle

Date: Date: 01-20-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 5

Charlie was all about fun, her legs hitched up high like a jockey.  Lordie he had to say that, and off went Thunder Butt, she hoped, laughing at the bounce.

"It looks like they all had a good start," no one stuck at the gate! "Charlie is in the lead by a nose with Melantha flanking her as well Henna."

"WHOOOOOOOO whoo!" She yelled, bouncing like a mad hatter, "ride em cowboy ..er girl!"

Always happens so fast. One minute you're just sitting there and the next, flying right out of it. She laughed watching Charlie. She did good for a minute, but Buttercup seemed suddenly distracted. She thought she was in a beauty pageant, again, and started her pretty prancing. Tail perked high. "Will you stop!" She laughed.

"We have Broch and Gabriel to pass Charlie out, neck and neck with Charlie just behind."

Lady started forward as soon as the others did, Henna laughing as she heard Charlie.

"Come on Cloud!" She was leaning close to the horse's neck, encouraging her to keep going! Though she seemed more incline to meander tonight!

"HOT DOG ...run baby!" Kicking her feet out so that they were sticking out like pegs.

She was cheering and giggling at the same time, at all the shouts and antics.

"Hey GAELLE what you doing back there?" she asked, twisting in the saddle enough to wave. Everyone knew she did not have good sense.

"And Charlie has that butt moving not liking being passed out. Broch is still close behind on that massive warhorse and Gabriel behind him."

The gait Buttercup in, it was an attractive gait. Buttercup didn't seem to be in a hurry. "I don't know! Maybe Buttercup is admiring the view?!" She was laughing so hard that she nearly doubled over in the saddle. Which didn't help her case!

Charlie cackled, " well give her the spurs ..you is dragging arse!" She yelled, and blinked, twisting back to pay attention.

"Broch once more passes Charlie out, will the Butt burst ahead again? Those behind, watch out! Gabriel still keeping third position as they head for the finish."

"Hey ... you dropped your hanky Broch!" She yelled at the man passing her ...she wished!

Looks like she'd better start planning that full course meal!

"Broch if I cook you're cleaning!!!" Added late, into the bet. She hoped it'd distract him somehow!

"Watc' mae butt, C'arlie," called out as he passed the lass. Giving her a wink. "Aye, with Cold water," called back to Gaelle, "mae dawg."

"I am, I AM!" She yelled back to Broch trying to get Thunder butt moving.

Briefly, Buttercup paused --stopped-- to stare up in the stands. She shook her tail and Gaelle kicked her into motion again. Gaelle couldn't speak, she was laughing too hard.

"We have Broch taking the Win on Hercules, warhorses don't fade away, they win Hometown races. Charlie on Thunder Butt taking Place and the upset is the Princess Henna taking Show."

Charlie was busy digging in her pockets looking for a match, to toss back to Gaelle, not sure it would help. "HEY GAELLE ..I got matches!" she yelled, laughing as she held them in the air. "One strike or two?"

She was surprised when Lady darted forward and then laughed, leaning to pat her neck. "Well done!" Very pleased.

"Whoohoo!" She cheered them all on. "Wonderful race.... well done!"

Charlie was so determined! "It's too late! I needed those things back at the gate." Cracking up. She eventually crossed the line and Buttercup, thinking she had done grand, held her head high and swished her  tail, still prancing. "Show off." She muttered.

Charlie was twisting in the saddle looking for Gaelle. "Well hell woman you are way back there." Trying to strike a match, as the horse slowed itself to huff and puff.

She laughed as she dismounted Cloud, walking her for a few moments. "You did that on purpose, didn't you?" Though she didn't mind losing one bit to Gabriel.

"Let 'er try t'ree!" Dismounting as he walked Hercules, praising him in Gaelic for a job well done. It was about time he beat Gaelle. First time he hadn't wanted to for he bet her Buttercup. Wanted her to win the mare from him.

Charlie slid down off the horse, patting him nicely, "well done. " Uh huh, she might look for him again next time, if she was lucky.

Close enough to hear the Gaelic, she appeared a little dreamy eyed for a second. Even if he was talking to a horse! She slid from Buttercup's back and gave her mane a gentle stroke. "Good race, Broch." She grinned.

"I think next time I am gonna do it backwards ...so I can watch everybody, " she chimed.  "Good going Broch," meaning it too.

"Well done everyone." She was glad she had decided to race, would have been even if Lady hadn't done so well.

Nodding to Henna with a smile " well done yourself .." she mused ....

He was use to talking to his horse, Hercules got him out of a few scraps during clan wars in Eire. "T'ank yea," attention turning on Gaelle with a slow grin. "About time tae," which reminded him of something and certainly said it normal tone knowing Charlie would hear as well. "I got t'e notice tae bae yea escort fir t'e attendant services."

Charlie was always a hoot to be around. She laughed again then dipped her head gently to the Princess. "Congratulations, I--" Whatever she wanted to say cut off. She looked like she'd faint when she heard Broch. Blush! "Oh, you did?"

"Congratulations to you all. it was a great race." She was still clapping.

"Yea ride well, C'arlie." Burnished green eyes alight with the mischief, "nice blus' o' Gaelle, e' C'arlie?"

Waving to Pyper, nodding her head to Broch. "Yeah the perfect shade of red, sweet lips" she teased.

"Thank you all for coming tonight. We will be running the races once again next month. There may be a smaller race if we get enough new additions in addition on another night before the main one."

Uh yeah, she hadn't told Charlie about that. Ha!!! "Thank you Pyper!" Gaelle needed a distraction. "Well, I did have the certificate, still. So, yes, it was there to use." Explaining!

"I need to head out. Early day tomorrow." He looked at Patrick. "Could you see to the Princess getting home safely?" He had a large order to finish.

"I especially thank those that participated in the Hometown race." That was what really made the night in his opinion. "Aye Gus, I would be honored." The megaphone down for that one.

A wave to Patrick. She had a ball. Maybe she would get lucky on the next race day.

Oops. Hopefully he hadn't been heard. "Thanks. I told her I'd see to an escort if I had to leave." He clapped a hand to Patrick's shoulder. "Good to see you as always."

Banafrit applauded, even if it was a little late. She stood with Abe after setting her canister near the basket that belonged to Broch. "Have a good eve, Pyper." Gently smiling, she took her leave with Abe. She waved towards the others still walking horses. After, the two were quick to head home.

"Good night to you as well Banafrit. Safe travels to you both."

"Aye, she preferred tae 'ave sweet lips escort'in 'er over all t'e ot'ers." He was watching her via a side glance to see if she could blush any redder. He waved to Banafrit as well being she was quick in her departure.

Charlie bobbled her head grinning."I don't blame her ... such a fine pair they are too," adding to the blush hopefully.

And with that he was out and down the stairs. He'd had to retrieve Thunder too, and maybe later this week he'd talk to Mel about training.

She couldn't get any redder. It was impossible! "Yes, I did. Is that bad? I could have picked another." She wanted to see if he had a reaction to that!

She smiled at Gaelle but then the woman was blushing. Walking Lady a little longer, she waved when she saw Gus leaving.

"Good seeing you Gus," returning a clasp to his shoulder before making his way down with his cousin before departing ways, Gus out the front gate and he over to see to Henna. "Would you do me the honor of escorting you home?"

"Uh huh ..sure you could," like Gaelle saw any other pair of lips.

She had given the lads instructions on the horses and now rejoined Gabriel. "What would you like for the main course?" She'd build the meal around it.

"Aye, yea could, t'en I'd 'ave tae bribe 'im tae step down, o' tell 'im 'ow tae get yea tae blus' all nig't long."

Charlie was listening to the exchange, chuckling. "That is easy. Show her a whoo whoo ...she will blush all night."  As if a whoo whoo was something to blush at.

"I cou--" She bit her lower lip when she heard Broch. "I would not mind your first idea." To her it must have been something to blush at! The whoo whoo. Because she was suddenly staring wide eyed at Charlie!

She had expected Gus to ask one of the guards or men that worked for Patrick, but instead she was delightfully surprised. "It would be a pleasure to have your company, Patrick."


Such a loaded question! "I'll tell you on the way back." Giving a wink before addressing the others. "Congratulations to you all, it was fun racing with you. A good night."

"Always fun, always," she said over to Gabriel and Melantha, grinning.

She too would head out. "Congratulations again to all. Good night and safe travels wherever they take you."

"Have a wonderful evening, Pyper!" Called out to her.

It might have been the answer or the wink but now she was blushing! Though she'd blame the cold. "Good night everyone and congratulations."

Charlie waved to all those leaving.  "Night yah all..Stay warm."

"Good night. It was fun!" She knew Gabriel and Charlie but not the others.  In time she'd come to know them all.

"A guid night tae yea Gabriel and Melant'a. See yea 'n next mont' if not before." Then calling out, "Pyper, will yea bae join'in us 'n going back tae the commons?" They were in Ballicastle right now and he'd not want her riding alone.

She paused at the railing. "Um... sure, if you like." She had actually walked, not that far a distance for an elf to travel...

"Yea can ride Buttercup and Gaelle can ride wit' mae. Iffin Gaelle din mind?" It was a plan and it was how they met after all. A few times giving her a ride back from the Moors.

Charlie had Ears, wondering where they were heading next.

"I don't mind at all." She slanted a smile up to Broch and offered the reins over to Pyper.

She chuckled a bit, as she took the reins. "Alright then."

The reins barely handed over and Gaelle was airborne, strong hands upon her waist had her up onto the massive warhorse first before he was up to straddled the saddle behind her.

She had just released them when she was suddenly swept up, squeaking like a bird all the while. And quite wide eyed. It took her a second to realize what had happened and when she felt Broch behind her, she.. blushed.

"Good night everyone," waving to the others before a horse was brought over for him to ride with Henna back. Focus back there as he lent a hand in helping her up. "I don't believe we ever got a chance to talk though I've seen you here and there in passing over the years."

She swung herself up easily into Buttercup's saddle, ready to follow them.

Not only behind her but had his arms go around for the reins. She could tuck herself back in against the thick fur of his cloak. It would be a pleasant ride back and he'd get to take in the scent of her hair. A pleasant one.


"Night," waving to Patrick as she pushed her self up on to Ears adjust her larger cloak. "Spoiled arse mule," she mumbled.

Vanilla sweet, the scent of her, and her hair. She did just that, too, tuck herself against him, to keep warm.

"No, we haven't." She smiled as he helped her up, adjusting her cloak. "Too many things to do and not taking the time for fun." The smile widened. "Which I plan to change."

"That is good to hear and much like myself." Not getting into any details but certainly he'd been all work and no play. Good reasons but he was moving away from past disappointments.

She would have an idea of the reasons of course, but it didn't need to be said. They could talk on the ride back. "This is a bit out of your way, isn't it?" Not that she minded if he didn't. And on they went.

Off they go!

-e-

Patrick Murdough Frasier
Falkirk Manor and Downs of Ballicastle

Date: 02-09-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 6

Falkirk Downs Position Race - Ten New Additions to the Circuit

Patrick made a few decisions on the fact they had ten maiden horses to run and become part of the regular races, which he explained to Gus who accompanied him to the tracks. "I decided to run three races to catch up these horses with the ones already in the circuit. Being there are ten, there will be the regular purse and position of win, place and show for them. Three from the Royal Stables, two from the McDonough stables, three from the McDale stables and two individually owned. One of which is mine, Dapper Dan." The last time was to run four horses for two races in position, but only giving 4th place for the winner and there on down. Though their points remained the same. "I will run one this afternoon and two later tonight. All done before the races on the eighteenth. Though, there would be no official betting like the regular races nor Hometown race for this Position Race."

Davin was excited to not only have a race horse his mother gifted him with but to see the stallion run for the first time and how he would do against nine others. Having been given the time for this unofficial race for having one in it, he made sure the fire would be burning well to last a few hours before he was needed back at the Lighthouse. Instead of using the bleachers he was down near the rail for a better view as few were here. Seeing the Frasiers, Patrick in particular having met him, he gave a wave their way.


"Will you be needing to run an additional race then on the eighteenth?" He was curious to see these new horses. Watching them run might give him some insight on which ones to bet on, though he had to chuckle to himself at the thought. More than likely the horses would have a bad night. A hand lifted toward the young man waving.

He waved in return to Davin, as he made his way there. "Davin, this is my cousin Fearghus, or Gus. If you ever need an excellent bow made, arrows, he is the man to see." A smile touched off to the side as he advertised for his cousin, giving Gus a clasp to his shoulder as he did. "Yes, there will be four registered races on the eighteenth," answering Gus' question.


"Well in the meet Gus," extending a hand. He didn't hide the fact how excited he was to have his own racing horse. "Do you have a horse as well, in the races?"

"Not today, no. My horse, Silent Thunder, has been running in the races." He grinned as he shook Davin's hand. "Nice to meet you, Davin. I take it you have one running today?"

"Yes, my mother stays at the manor with Melantha Quinn, my cousin. She recently gifted me with a race horse from ones they got in. A late birthday present she told me." Which had been in England and his mother here when that date came about. Subconsciously he knew he was becoming more and more rooted here but still too stubborn to admit it. He loved taking care of the Lighthouse and living there. The treasure hunting probably had a lot to do with that as well all he met were so friendly, like family. "His name is Rip Roaring, I gave him that name when I got to watch him run in the field. He's amazing."

"I hope he does well in these races but if he doesn't, don't take it to heart for it takes time and all the horses are fine specimens. He will be running against the best." Glancing up towards the tower then back, "I need to go get ready as they are bringing out the horses now." If ones didn't have a jockey of their own, as most of the stables did, there was a crew assigned to run personally owned race horses. He was on a schedule so headed up the bleachers to access the tower room. Comfortable one set up like an office but with windows all around. He was quick about it at this point and soon clearing the megaphone to make sure all was in working condition. Gus could join him at his leisure or stay down with Davin if he wanted to watch the race close up and with company. He would not make good company when announcing the horses.

"Good name." He grinned then nodded at Patrick. "All right then." He decided to remain with Davin and watch the horses from ground level. He'd join Patrick after the race.

"Welcome this evening for a Position Race of ten new horses being added to the circuit." The megaphone had his voice ring loud and clear as the jockeys got their horses into position. The lineup for the first, all written up as they would be changing gate numbers for each race. Mimicking the regular races for in essence it was the same. "In gate One we have Morgan, then down the line, Lace Stockings, Brandy and Rum, Dapper Dan, Roxanne, Gold Dust, Just Dandy, Rip Roaring, Dusky Princess and Trading Chances. These are all maiden runs, the first of three races for these horses." Watching the man with the flag as it went down. "And they're off! We have Lace Stockings and Brandy coming out of the gate like bats out of hell, neck and neck in the lead, with Trading Chances and Roxanne not far behind."

He leaned with both hands resting on the fence as he watched the horses. Glancing at Davin to gauge his reaction briefly then he looked back. His own horse had taken time to get used to the track.

"Lace Stockings surges ahead with Trading Chances taking up second and Brandy in third position," the others were further behind but that didn't mean one or more might spurt ahead. "Lace Stockings is still in the lead with Trading Chances and Brandy very close behind. Gold Dust seems to be picking up speed as well."

"Lace Stockings is keeping her lead with Brandy dropping back a little as well Trading Chances. Morgan has been coming up from behind as they head for the finish line."


"Trading Chances has upset Lace Stockings lead with a spurt at the end giving him a Win by a nose, Lace Stockings taking Place and Brandy and Rum taking Show."


"That concludes the first race for tonight. There will be two more later this evening. I hope to see you back," plus any others as nighttime was better for ones getting out.


Well, Rip hadn't done as well this race but he took Patrick's words to heart and would see how he did in the second race later. It would give him time to check the fire for the Lighthouse and get something to eat. Deciding to head for Clearview for that meal and tell his mother and cousin about Rip Roaring's first race. A tad disappointed but not overly. He still had high hopes for the stallion. "If you want a good meal, Gus, you're welcome to eat at Clearview with me." Friends were always welcome.

"I think I'd like that.." He turned to face Davin with a grin, then lifted a hand to Patrick in the tower. He likely would stay at the track until the next race, knowing the dedication of his cousin.

Patrick waved to them both but it would appear he planned to stay here, have a dinner brought as he had some papers to go over and stats logged.

------------later that evening

Patrick was still in the tower of the Downs shuffling through a stack of papers as he kept track of the time. It was getting close for the second race to begin. At least a hot meal had been sent down to him by Hannah, bringing his son and a few of her brood with her. They had long gone back but had stayed over an hour. He had enjoyed her company as usual, spending time with his son in bringing him around, as well Hanna and her children, to visit the race horses that were here this night. He promised to get him one once he was a little older, right now rocking horses were about his speed. The papers were set aside as he had gotten a good amount of the tedious work done. He was up from his seat and over to stand at the large window, watching them get the horses ready and those coming by to watch the second race.

Davin returned with Gus, bellies full of good food. Just like he promised. He stopped by to have a few words with Rip Roaring about using the speed he knew he had in the next race. Promises made if he did, it was not below him to bribe his stallion under the circumstances. Once done as they were getting the stallion ready, he was back out to the fence to watch from there like he had earlier.

He had enjoyed the dinner and the company. It was almost as lively there as it was in Falkirk manor. While Davin stopped to talk to Rip Roaring, he continued on to the tower to greet Patrick again. After saying hello, he left his cousin to his work and headed back down to join Davin at the fence.

"How has your horse done in these races?" A shift of focus from where they were leading the horses to the gates, to get them ready, to Gus. He realized he hadn't asked him before, only found out he had one. Giving Patrick a quick wave as he noticed him at the window before back to Gus.

He enjoyed the quick visit but time was drawing near and his focus would turn to the race and announcements. A wave was given before he turned from the window to test out the megaphone. His voice rang loud and clear. "Good evening and welcome to Falkirk Downs. The second race will begin in a few moments. Our line up from Gate One down is, Just Dandy, Roxanne, Gold Dust, Brandy and Rum, Lace Stockings, Dusky Princess, Trading Chances, Dapper Dan, Morgan and Rip Roaring." Watching his man with the flag and once it was swept down, "and they're off!"

"Well, he's not in the top fifteen but he came in second once. Finished at the end in the other races." He chuckled softly. "Still, he's got a good heart and loves to run, though he does get distracted." He leaned on the fence as the racers started from the gate.

"We have Dusky Princess shooting out for the lead with Dapper Dan not far behind as well Rip Roaring."

"Now Rip Roaring taking the lead, Roxanne not far behind with Trading Chances and Dapper Dan neck to neck vying for third position."

"Roxanne surges ahead with Dusky Princess on her heels, Rip Roaring dropping down to third position with others not far behind."

"Roxanne is determined to keep her lead with Dusky Princess and Rip Roaring still vying to have a spot in this race as they head for the finish line."

He was leaning forward as he watched the finish. These new ones were going to be ones to watch.

"There was a close judgement between Dusky Princess and Rip Roaring for second and third place. The judges," three men stationed at the finish line had conferred, "have Roxanne as taking the Win, Dusky Princess  to Place and Rip Roaring to Show. We will have a short intermission to let the horses cool down before the next race."

Neale braced a bent arm above his head to the fence watching the end of the race. He slanted a look up toward the tower before he straightened and started in that direction.

-c-

Date: 02-09-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 7

"Holy!" Giving a loud whistle as his talk with Rip must have done some good. It didn't really matter that he didn't Win but so close to second by a nose, he was thrilled.

"See, he just needed to warm up." He laughed as he clapped a hand to Davin's shoulder.

"It would seem so, I'm pleased, very pleased. My mother will be pleased having given him to me." This was one of those days to mark on his calendar as being one of the best.

The eldest of the Frasier clan wound his way upward, entering the tower room. "Excellent race, Patrick."

Patrick was taking a break, glass of cognac in hand as he was back to the large window to watch. One that was from ceiling to floor with only the casing to support it. He caught sight of Neale as a big grin grew. This made his night, the tracks a long time in planning, setbacks at times between racing, to this moment, being able to race during the winter, most of the time. Turning from the window as his brother joined him. "Come join me in a drink," indicating the table set up with various libations, certainly at least one would appeal to his brother. "It is finally working smoothly, more horses have been added, eight by stables and two by individuals. With ten, I decided to run separate races to bring them up to par with the others. Points and coins."

"Good. We'll see how he does next race after a bit of a rest." He had caught sight of someone heading for the tower but from this distance, he wasn't sure who it was.

Which had him taking a look in that direction as well. One over his shoulder but he didn't recognize the man. Turning the glance back to Gus, "someone you know?" It was noted the man headed for the tower where Patrick was and now within that tower room.

Neale crossed to take up a glass, pouring himself two fingers. The crystal cork was pressed back into place and he turned to Patrick. He tilted his glass in a toast to Patrick. "To say you've done yourself proud is a waste of breath, Brother."

"Aye, that's Neale Frasier." He had recognized the Duke by his walk. "He's head of the Frasier clan, Duke of Falkirk, and Captain of his own ship. "He's my cousin and Patrick's brother."

"Then say, what has been done here, is the pride of our family shared." All had a hand in the making of it possible, even if he technically was running it. Presently. There was a time he traded off with Danny then back. He lifted his glass, pleased with all of it and such in his brother's eyes. Yes, he looked up to his oldest brother. Kicking back what was left in his glass before setting it back to the table. "The third and last Position Race is about to begin if you can stay?" He hoped his brother could, well knowing he was as busy a man as he was now. "The regular race is scheduled for February eighteen." As that was a recent decision so wished to make his brother privy. The notice would be going out soon.

"I've heard of him, good things said although somewhat reclusive." Although there were a few reclusive citizens, sometimes himself for that matter.

Neale nodded toward the window. "Don't hold the race up, Patrick. I'd enjoy watching." Neale crossed to take a place by that window, looking down over the race track and the people gathered below. He watched, and drank, and  looked forward to witnessing Patrick at work. Pride may be one of the seven sins and Neale would be the first to admit to that particular downfall of his. Pride in his family was something he never hid from anyone. He kept the weight of his long, woolen black coat on, however. Though he was staying now, Patrick would recognize Neale would be returning to his duties soon enough.

There were comfortable chairs, and with the room being enclosed with a pot belly stove in the corner, it was cozy. Patrick was without his jacket, cap, scarf and gloves on. He was back over to the announcers podium, quick glance over the last race's lineup before speaking into the megaphone. "From Gate number one on down, we have, Dusky Princess, Trading Chances, Rip Roaring, Gold Dust, Morgan, Dapper Dan, Lace Stockings, Just Dandy, Roxanne and Brandy & Rum."

"Aye, he is though not so much of late. Most of his free time is spent with his wife and children, his siblings and their families, and of course, his extended family now. Meals are extremely lively affairs at the Manor." His attention was back on the horses with Patrick's announcement.

"I've seen it when taking one of my longer rides to see the lands. Impressive. There was a multitude of children outside playing. Are all those his?" There had to be more than a dozen. Except his attention was distracted as the next race was about to begin. "Come on Rip!"

He watched as the flagman waited making sure all were ready before the flag went down... "and they are off!"

He laughed, shaking his head. "No, not all." And that was all he was going to say until the race was over!

"Trading Chances and Brandy are out of the gates nose to nose in taking the lead so far. Roxanne not far behind as well Morgan."

She had heard of Falkirk Downs as being the race course of some of the most beautiful equines in the entire world. This intrigued her very much as horses were like second nature to her. Lifting the shawl higher around slender shoulders Mira made her way along the inner bleaches. Blues scanned her surroundings and, with equal wonder she stepped outside instantly taking note of others. Of course if any happened to look her way she would offer them that timid, genuine smile. Crossing the lawn she moved closer to the base of the track, awaiting the result of the race.

"Roxanne has surged ahead of Trading Chances with Dapper Dan coming up from behind."

"Dapper Dan has now surged ahead of Roxanne with Lace Stocking coming out from behind to mofe ahead not far behind Roxanne."

Neale shifted his stance to lean enough to follow the progress of the horses around.

"Lace Stockings has moved ahead of Dapper Dan with Rip Roaring on her hooves, Dapper Dan on hers." It seemed it was any horse's race as leads were gained and lost. "This is a close race with a few vying to take that win as they come into the last stretch to the finish line."

Davin noticed the woman heading for the bleachers, giving her an upnod with a friendly smile in greeting before he was back to watching the race.

Lips cured into a bright smile as she felt the wind whip around her lithe form by the thunder of the steeds passing her. Whomever may be the victor she would heartily cheer. If only she could be the one on the back of such a magnificent equine. Golden waves uplifted in the wind while various, uneven bands lazily flopped over the brim of her nose and looped underneath her small chin. Out of the corner of her eye she caught someone smiling at her. Head tilted and in his return a smile offered. "They are beautiful aren't they?" Forcing herself out of a day dream.

"The results are in, Lace Stockings has taken the Win, Roxanne to Place and Dapper Dan to Show."

That was quite a race. He let out a low whistle then looked at Davin, eyes moving to the woman who spoke. A polite nod was given.

Marking the results before speaking into the megaphone again. "I hope you have enjoyed your night here at Falkirk Downs. We will be running the regular races on the eighteenth at the usual time."

"Aye, and my stallion did well." He had a promise to be kept. "If you will excuse me." Not to be impolite but he only had so much time before he was needed back to feed the fires of the Lighthouse. He was in a quick step heading for the stables to intercept the jockey leading Rip Roaring back. He would take over, those extra oats and rub down of his coat.

Neale tipped back his drink, finishing it off. Crossing to his brother, he offered a hand. "Patrick, quite the showing."

"Good night, Davin. Thank you again for inviting me to dinner." He watched the young man head for the stables.

Neale's hand was gripped as he stepped away from the podium. His left hand to grip over his brother's forearm. "Let me get my cloak and I'll head back with you to the manor." Neale was gone a lot that he would take the opportunity to spend some time. Possibly a family meeting which were held every so often. Hand released as he was over to collect his cloak and outerwear. His men would see to closing up the race tracks, tracks would be raked as well any other cleanup needed.

He owned one of the horses? She was happy for him, her eyes offered nothing other than warmth as he pointed out his good fortune. "I am very happy for you" Then as he made his leave she stepped back. "Of course. Congratulations."

"I can't think of anything I would enjoy more right now." He nodded to Patrick and waited while his brother collected his things. Once done, these two Frasiers would make their way back to Falkirk. Where warmth was not only found in the hearth, but in the heart.

"The regular race is held next week, on Wednesday, I believe." Gus informed her. "More races and more of a crowd. If you'll excuse me, I need to catch up with my cousins." He smiled as he bowed slightly and made his way to the foot of the tower to wait for them.

Gus would be collected on the way, as well a cordial nod given the woman he was talking with  They would make a brief stop at the stables and congratulate Davin on his stallion's run before continuing up to the manor. Nice night to walk it.

Blues mirrored Fearghus as he spoke to her. "Oh. Thank you so much for letting me know. I will pencil that into my schedule" Oh she was serious. "It was nice meeting you."

-e-

Date: 02-18-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 8

February Falkirk Races

Torches and lanterns were all lit giving off light mostly over the tracks. Enough lighting over the bleachers so all could see. Light snow drifted but without accumulating as the staff was at work with last minute preparations. Stable hands were getting the horses ready for the first race as well those in the subsequent ones. Jockeys were suiting up as all kept an eye on the time. The flagman heading out to the field near the starting gates as well the three judges stationed at the finish line. Patrick was already up in the Tower, probably a few hours at this point. He was going over a request for another Stable to be added and the horses that would come with it. There would probably be others as well that he could run another Position Race next month before the regular one. Jacket was off and hung over the back of his chair as he sat at the desk provided. A filing cabinet next to him within reach if he needed to look up any pertinent information. Room was warm for the pot belly stove that burned wood and coal.

Broch wasn't sure if Gaelle could make it tonight but that didn't deter him from coming as it was becoming a monthly ritual. One he enjoyed, though always better to have one to tease. Gaelle was a delight to tease. He chose his usual spot with extra woolen blankets over the seats for anyone to join him. Fur cloak kept him warm against the drift of snow, light as it was. He also had a basket with hot drinks in containers as well potcheen to offer.

Davin was excited, luckily he got one of the regular guards that patrolled the area of the lighthouse to check on the fire, adding wood as needed. Turned out he was one that had taken care of such when it wasn't occupied, didn't mind at all and was friends with Eric. Rip Roaring had done well in the Position race but now he would be up against ones that had been running the circuit for a few months. He rode in on Duke, one of the work horses at the stables in case he wished to enter the Hometown race. Catching up with Kieran, he joined him in coming tonight. Once dismounted, leaving their horses with others that had come, he caught sight of Broch by himself but with blankets over the seats. A glance given Kieran with a grin to spread, "looks like an invitation to me," as he headed there. "Evening Broch." Taking up one of the seats. Good ones chosen too, he realized for the great view, not too close nor too far.

Kieran hadn't placed any bets but he wanted to watch the horses run. Maybe he would next month. He was riding the horse his sisters had given him when he became a squire, a dappled gray named simply Cloud. Grinning at Davin, he nodded. "Sure does." A nod given to the man as they joined him. "Evening , Broch."

Diane made her way to the track on foot tonight, humming to herself as she swung a basket in hand, blanket in the other. Making time to observe the races was merely a prudent move as owner and trainer of racing horses! Reaching the stands, she was still smiling as she unfolded the blanket to make best use of it, the basket at her feet. Her sister had insisted on seeing her supplied for the evening's event.

"Even'in lads, come join mae." While they were doing just that! "Yea get a t'irst fir somet'ing warm, yea 'elp yesleves." Indicating the large basket. "T'ere bae potc'een as well."

Justin was alone tonight, no little ones tagging along and his wife was with them. He moved through the doors and into the stands. In his hand he held a basket of goodies his wife packed and some treats for the horses later.

Gus was going to do as he had every race, except for the ones that weren't public. He made his way up to the tower and after greeting Patrick, moved to the window to watch. He had escorted Henna again and of course, she joined him.

Broch hailed both Diane and Justin over to join his growing group.

Henna was delighted to be here again and she grinned at Patrick as she and Gus joined him. Even planted a kiss on his cheek before settling to watch. She couldn't stay late tonight but she wouldn't leave until the races were over.

A hand rose to wave to the Frasiers and the lady with them before she playfully eyed Broch. Go over there? Was it safe?

He flashed Broch a grin and moved towards them nodding in greeting to them all before taking his own seat with them, tucking the basket under the seats for later.

She waved in return, smiling delightedly. This time she had placed bets

Patrick stood at the window, watching those that were coming in, waving when seen before he was around and over to the podium. A smile to both Gus and Henna before a tap on the megaphone had his voice carrying loud and clear. "Welcome this night to Falkirk Downs, in a few moments the first race will beginning. Starting at Gate number one on down we have, Trading Chances, Lace Stockings, Morgan, Ash and Stone, Dapper Dan, Cinnamon, Jack, Cream and Sugar, Roxanne, Harvest Gold and Windchaser. The first and third races have eleven running, first and last ten. We have some new horses and so a forth race will be standard, possibly next month there will be five. Keep an eye on theses new ones for they will challenge the ones already in the Circuit." Watching for the flagman as once it was down, "and.. they're off!"

"We have Trading Chances, Cinnamon and Jack neck and neck to take the lead with Morgan not far behind."

Gathering blanket, basket and self, she headed over, but froze, hearing her horse's name. Cinnamon was her baby.

He gave Diane a wink, as much as saying it was safe to join them. With the horses out of the gates, his attention turned there.

Someone was running a little late. Not by much though. She was bundled up as she stepped into the stands, her attention divided between the race in progress and looking for a place to sit.

"We have Jack taking the lead by a nose with Trading Chances close. Windchaser has moved up to third position and it seems Harvest Gold is having difficulties still near the starting gates."

He caught sight of Gaelle as he waved her over to the group collected around him. He'd be hard to miss especially with the grin that was spreading while patting the seat next to him.

"Come on, Cinnamon! Show them your heels!" Giving her horse the encouragement needed, Diane flashed a quick, saucy grin at Broch and planted herself on a bench nearby, wrapping herself in the blanket.

Waving hand spotted, along with the wide grin and she found herself grinning, too. She wove through the stands towards him, sitting on the spot he patted with his hand. "Hello," she greeted quietly.

"Trading Chances and Jack are nose to nose fighting it out for first place, Dapper Dan has come up from behind to take third position with Cinnamon close behind as well Lace Stockings."

"A guid eve tae yea Gaelle, I was 'oping yea could make it," words low as not to disturb the announcements, arm sliding around her shoulders once she settled.

"Yes, I made it. I would have been quite disappointed if I missed this." She leaned against him, getting all nice and warm.

"Evening, Miss Gaelle." Fingers wiggled at Gaelle before she returned her attention to the race, watching Cinnamon's strides critically.

It was hard not to yell though she could only remember one or two of the horses she had bet on. She actually had to place her hands over her mouth so her voice didn't carry over the megaphone.

"Trading Chances as spurted ahead with Jack still in second place. Lace Stockings and Roxanne fighting for third position as they head for the finish line."

"Good evening, Diane." She slanted a wide smile towards her then her own attention was on the races.

"The judges have it with Trading Chances taking the Win, Jack for Place and Roxanne to Show."

Grumping quietly to herself, she made a note to increase Cinnamon's endurance training.

"The second race we have ready at the first gate on down, Golden Lady, Just Dandy, Red Knight, Gold Dust, Dusky Princess, Spartan, Renegade Star, Blacke Magick, RW Blackbird and Drop the Act." His crew out checking the track and racking where necessary as the jockeys and horses waited for the flag to go down. The flagman waited until all were off the tracks before the flag swung up then down, gates opening.. "and they're off!"

Gaelle tugged her cloak around her more, listening to the announcements as she watched the tracks. But she glanced away from there, to look over the stands, curious to see who else was about. When she heard the announcer, she turned back to watch the race. She pursed her lips, dug around for the paper that had the names of her horses.

"We have Blacke Magick ahead by a nose with Drop the Act close, Renegade Star and Just Dandy not far behind."

"Blacke Magic and Just Dandy are nose to nose for the lead with Renegade Star close behind."

He was enjoying watching the horses run. Occasionally, a glance would be taken over his shoulders, just to watch reactions.

"Renegade Star has taken the lead by a nose with Blacke Magick and Golden Lady vying for second. Red Knight is not far behind for a possible upset."

Gripping her thumbs, she leaned forward to watch.

She hunkered over a little bit, just in an effort to keep herself warm. She watched the race intently, chewing on her lower lip.

"Renegade Star has taken a good lead but this is a close race for second and third place. Blacke Magic in second with RW Blackbird coming up from behind as they head for the finish line."

Davin's focus was glued to the track. Not a word from him even if his horse wasn't racing in this one.

"Renegade Star has taken the Win, with Drop the Act to come up from behind to Place, RW Blackbird to Show."

She smiled to herself, nodding slightly as she straightened up to tuck herself back against Broch.

Which had him chuckle. He had bid but any winnings were being donated to the Orphanage. A rub of a gloved thumb went against her cheek before focus was back on the race tracks.

Twice now. Diane was far from pleased with her stock, frowning at the results.

She grinned up to him for the chuckle and tipped him a sassy little wink for the touch against her cheek. She didn't say a word though, and she turned her focus back on the races.

"Our third race is about to begin." As the men once more were checking the tracks as the jockeys got the horses in place. "From Gate One on down we have, Smoky Trails, Hunting Demons, Altair, Rag Doll, Brandy and Rum,  Blue Lightning, Legacy and Lace, Casey, Ala' al Din, Rip Roaring and Black Rose."

After watching the races thus far very intently he would lean forward and take out his basket and dig out the ale and cheese.

As Rip Roaring was announced he gave a shrill whistle as he gained his feet, free arm waving before seated again. No, he wasn't excited.

Patrick was watching the flagman but noted Davin jump up, chuckling before focus was back where it should be. Once the flag was down, "and they're off!"

He nearly jumped out of his skin when Davin yelled, then laughed and turned to watch the race.

"We have Altair and Rag Doll nose to nose in the lead with Legacy and Lace close behind."

"Legacy & Lace spurts ahead to take the lead with Rag Doll and Hunting Demons nose to nose for second. Altair and Blue Lightning not far behind."

She was grinning wide as she watched, every now and again glancing over the crowd, at least those near her to see their reactions.

"Legacy and Lace is keeping her lead with Altair and Blue Lightning not far behind."

"Altair has passed out Legacy & Lace with Rag Doll keeping third position. Blue Lightning falling behind as passed out by Brandy and Rum as they head for the finish line."

Warm gaze tipped down to the paper in her hand from the track. She tilted her head faintly, reading over the names then lifted her eyes to watch the race.

"We have Legacy & Lace taking the Win with Brandy and Rum to Place, Rag Doll to Show."

He cleared his throat as Rip came in last. He would need to talk to him like last time.

She'd definitely have to have Brogan have a word with Blue!

"For the Fourth and last Registered race, we have from Gate number One down, Blackmoor's Sage, Court Jester, Justified Silver, Gypsy Prince, Phantom Flame, Silent Thunder, Bayda Farasha, Wrong Turn, Shooting Star and Shaya." Once more waiting on the flagman who waited on the team cleaning up the tracks as needed. Seeing the flag go up then swing down.. "and they're off!"

"We have Justified Silver taking the lead with Phantom Flame and Court Jester not far behind."

All horses had good and bad days, just like people. He clapped a hand to Davin's shoulder briefly then turned to watch the next race.


"Phantom Flame has surged ahead with Gypsy Prince and Justified Silver not far behind."

Her hips wiggled suddenly and she struck a sudden grin, her eyes on the track.

"We have Phantom Flame still in the lead with Shaya close behind. Gypsy Prince and Justified Silver still in contention as well a few others."

"Phantom Flame is determined to keep the lead with Justified Silver just behind, Silent Thunder and Shaya nose to nose as they head for the finish line."

"Silent Thunder surged ahead to take the Win with Shaya to place, Phantom Flame to Show." This race had been close and certainly an upset at the end.

Her lips pursed. Not much luck that race. She tucked the paper away and puffed out a breath, glancing up at Broch. Sweet expression first, until she made a fish face.

Making a face, she was distinctly disappointed in her horses.

-c-

Date: 02-18-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 9

Gus got a hug for his horse doing as well as he did.

"That concludes our registered races and now for the Hometown race. Those wishing to enter as there are some very fine prizes, let Ralph, our dedicated flagman, know. Your name and the name of your horse."

Well, he was shocked and quite pleased. Grinning at Henna, he returned the hug then chuckled. Thunder was full of surprises.

It was then one of his men knocked at the Tower door before stepping in. A few words exchanged as at first Patrick stalled on the idea but was soon talked into it. He grabbed his coat and headed down to partake in the Hometown race. Stopping near Diane to talk her into it. If he had to, bring others down with him! "Come Diane, I challenge you to a bet, no matter who wins this race that I come in before you. A new saddle for you if I'm wrong. If I am not, then a cake or whatever." He didn't really care what, just as long as he got her out there too. Tim was at the megaphone. "Ladies and Gentlemen, I will be announcing the Hometown race as we can see that Patrick has finally taken a break to join in." Drawing attention to that fact. "Already he is talking to a pretty lady." Which had Patrick whipping a glance up to the Tower. Oh, he would get even!

She sliced a grin towards Patrick as she rose upward, with a glance ticking to Broch.

"C'mon Kieran," already heading for the Flagman to join in the race. Giving him his name and that of his horse, Duke.

She blinked, realizing she was the female in question before she shot a look at the tower. Oh, so he wanted to bet? "Then it's a good thing I brought Sacristan with me, hm? If you win... I'll name my next racer after you, Patrick."

"Okay, I'm coming." He gave his name and that of his horse, Cloud.

He stood up in a stretch, wicked gleam settling in burnished green eyes. "Aye, it bae about t'at time. I bae want'in another pie." He had to bet something with a wink to Gaelle, "w'at will yea bae want'in iffin yea can beat mae in t'is race?" Way done then really who won.

He noticed that Thunder Thighs was brought out for him to ride. The stable hand grinning like a loon. He was suspecting this was a setup!

True to habit, Gus headed back for Heathfield and since Henna had an early day tomorrow, she joined him, waving to anyone who might be looking their way.

"We're running out of things to wager, Broch." Informing him as she started to the flagman. Naturally, she had Buttercup. "Uhm..I don't know! What are you willing to give up?" That was to Broch. Of course, the way it sounded-- it didn't sound innocent. She snorted out a laugh.

Chuckling to herself, Diane went to fetch Sacristan. She wasn't getting caught with a horse by that name, no indeed!

"If you do that, the horse might end up with many a mishap in life." Maybe his bet was too much. "How about I get you a cake from the bakery if you win?" He was stalling wasn't he!

She eyed him over her shoulder. "If I win, you let me breed Sage to one of your mares."

Tim got the word as he made the announcements, "we have in gate number one on down.. Kieran on Cloud, Davin on Duke, Patrick on Thunder Thighs," with a snicker that could be heard. "Gaelle on Buttercup, Broch on Hercules and Diane on Sacristan. Anyone else before we start?"

"I'll need to get myself a mare then." Grinning as he was in the saddle. The snicker heard as he suspected how this would go. All in good fun he was sure but that also meant he would get even. "Although I do have Dapper Dan, if you want one of your mares bred?" There was the alternative as he guided Thunder Thighs into the gate assigned.

"Go Thunder Thighs!" Hollered from gate five. Or four. She didn't know where she was.

He was making all kinds of faces like this was a really tough one to think through. "I'll bake yea a pie." Which could leave her to wonder!

"We'll see who wins first." Mounting up, she nudged Sacristan into place.

She did wonder. She made a face, too. Her brows were up. "You will?"

"Aye, 'uckelberry pie, Once I can get 'old o' 'uckleberries."

The flagman waited while the riders made their bets. Once situated the flag was up and down with Tim hollering from the megaphone. "They're off! We have Davin in the lead with Kieran close behind. Thunder Thighs pounding the turf with Patrick riding her hard." Oh yes! "Broch and Diane nose to nose with Gaelle trailing. Spur Buttercup on!"

Patrick near fell out of the saddle hearing that with a fisted hand to raise a second before holding on.

Gaelle sputtered out a croaked sound, a laugh. And her heels dug into Buttercup's flanks.

He let out a whoop as Cloud took off from the gate, hard on Duke's heels.

Oh no, there was no way she was losing every race tonight. Bending low over Sacristan's neck, she murmured encouragement.

"Kieran spurts ahead as Broch moves into second place, Patrick still riding Thunder Thighs hard gaining speed with Diane close behind. Davin falling back with Gaelle."

"Kieran is keeping the lead but with Broch coming up behind to challenge it, Patrick still riding Thunder Thighs keeping third position. Diane not far behind with Gaelle then Davin falling behind her."

She was trying, really, really trying. But Buttercup seemed to be up to her old antics. The prancing, it began.

"Positions remain the same except for Gaelle falling behind Davin. Kieran, Broch and Patrick in the lead."

Patrick was still ahead of her, urging her to nudge her heels into her horse's flanks. Roseann would scold her for so many tangles in her hair, but Diane had a wager to win.

"Patrick is riding Thunder Thighs hard but she's not quite getting there. Yet... as they head for the finish line."

He wasn't really paying attention to where everyone was. He was enjoying himself too much.

Gaelle cracked up again. So much that she nearly fell off of her horse.

Oh lord, she'd lose if she laughed. Such a naughty announcer.

"We have it folks, Kieran on Cloud to take the Win, Patrick and Broch tie for second place and both will gain that prize. Diane on Sacristan to come in Third, Gaelle on Buttercup then Davin on Duke."

"Lucky fir yea I din 'ave tae bake yea a pie!" Maybe. Making it sound like she had won even if he had beaten her again this race. "I t'ink t'at makes us even." She had beaten him in the first two races run. "Next time it will bae a bigger bet fir t'e tie breaker." So he would need to think up a good one.

"Bigger bet? Hah, I think I already have one in mind." She slowed Buttercup once they were across the line. She was grinning, even if Broch beat her.

So she'd have to name her next horse after Patrick, hm?

Well, that had been quite a surprise. He patted the horse on the neck as he continued to ride him, allowing him to cool down.

Hopefully a stallion! A mare name Patrick would be different.

Davin may have finished last but it wasn't in his nature to get down very often. Even if his horse had finished last in the races as well, there was always next month. Instead he called out to his friend. "Got yea a lass to fit in that love sofa with you?"

"Nope, not me." What love seat? Apparently he had missed something?

"What yea won for winning. A love seat, maybe a lass will be included being you don't have one." Have Kieran get pale a moment? Davin was grinning as he caught up to him, trotting along to cool down the horses.

He snorted out a laugh. "I don't have time for a lass. I'll be giving that to my sisters for in their cottage."

Who said anything about naming it Patrick? Reining in her horse, she grinned at Kieran. "The rumor is, you make time for one. A lass, that is. Well raced, by the way."

"Or your sister about to be married?" There was a thought, "unless your other sister," he could not remember their names offhand being they were only mentioned once before, "could use it as a hope sofa?"  Davin was going to get in trouble if this got back to the one still in the lands.

"I'm lucky I get time off to meself!" He ducked his head slightly at the tease from Diane. "Corina is the one getting married." He chuckled. "Cairenn will probably put it in one of the rooms and forget about it." At least things had quieted some at the candy shop.

"Aye? Ye dae?" Brow raising as he walked his horse alongside hers. "W'at bae it?" Maybe he could get a better idea knowing hers.

"I hope you enjoyed the race." Which he had, win or lose. "I believe the prize you have won is a reading by Mikhail MacKay. Jade eggs for Patrick and Broch."

"It's more of.. for if you win. Really..." She canted her head, pursed her lips and watched him for a moment thoughtfully.

"I did. And a reading, hm?" The irony of that wasn't lost on her.

"Aye," he knew she was purposely feeding him just enough to allow his curiosity to run rampant. "Yea going tae give mae a massage?" Clearing his throat in an effort to swallow down the laugh for how it could be taken. "Mae own personal masseuse. I'll bae giv'in mae egg tae Gaelle 'ere." Announced when he heard what he won.

She could have made a horrible joke, and the glint of it flared it in her eyes. Instead, she smiled at him. "Well, I could do that too. I was thinking I'd dance for you again." She was going to add more but she was surprised by  his last. She softened her smile a touch. Then, without missing a beat and looking quite serious. "I think I have enough eggs, Broch." She waited a second to see if he caught on. But her throat cleared, then softer. "Thank you."

A brow arched at Broch as she coughed discreetly. Diane had a wicked mind some times.

"A very good race and I thank you all for the participation in it." He had some ideas in mind that would be presented to Neale and his brothers in running the Hometown race separately for the growing number of Registered horses coming in. Invite their allies for that event.

"'Aye? Wit' 'ow many veils?" One could tell where his mind went in that second. "Enough eggs? Dae yea keep 'em all 'n one basket and are t'ey made o' jade?"

"Four." Without missing a beat. She let his mind wonder though, even if she did seem serious! Maybe she was. The last had her cracking up. "No, they're not jade."

"Good night, everyone and thanks." He looked at Davin. "I need to head back." Still had to be on the field come dawn.

"About where you'd put it if you kept it." Finally reining in Duke with a pet along his neck before hearing Kieran. "I'll head back with you to relieve the guard from feeding the fire at the Lighthouse. Good night everyone. I enjoyed my night spending it with you all."

"Good night," she offered to the two leaving. Even waved!

He gave a wave to Kieran and Davin, "a guid nig't tae yea lads. I enjoyed t'e nig't 'n yea company as well." Then back to Gaelle. "Yea bae 'olding out mae wit' t'ree ot'ers." Like baskets were men. Anything to tease. "Yea bae lay'in t'e golden eggs t'en? Being yea 'ave four."

"Good night Kieran. Davin. Thank you both for coming and joining in." They helped to make the races a success.

"Night everyone." He chuckled and gave a shrug. "Aye, but there's no place to keep it in the barracks." He didn't live with his sisters after all. He turned Cloud toward the gate, riding out into the night.

A last wave as he spurred Duke on to ride alongside his friend.

"Four eggs? I didn't mean four eggs, I meant four veils, Broch." She pursed her lips, fighting off a laugh.

"Aye?" Retracking here as talking on veils at all had his mind in a boggle. "T'ey will bae easier tae wear t'an eggs."

"Easier to take off, too." Again, that beat wasn't skipped. She stroked Buttercup's mane, grinning devilishly.

"I should be going as well. Rose will want to know what happened." She smiled a farewell to Broch and Gaelle, then glanced back at Patrick.

"I will see you back as it's not far." They both lived on Ballicastle lands and his men would see to closing up the tracks once it was cleaned up and the horses all seen to for the night.

"Have a good night," she said to Patrick and Diane, smiling to the both of them.

"Guid, t'en I wont 'ave any trouble wit' 'em." Giving a wink but it was time to head out as well. "Would t'e lady mind mae escort back?" Hearing Patrick and Diane as well, "a guid nig't tae yea bot'." Nudging Hercules for the Gate as well so the men at the tracks could get their work done.

"I'd like that, thank you. Good night!" Called to the two, she went to collect her basket and blanket.

She hadn't expected that! There was a tiny blush from her end as she guided Buttercup to the gait. "I won't mind at all." Answering his last.

He dismounted, handing off Thunder Thighs to the stable hand before making his way to intercept Diane then heading out. Walking distance for them and with the moon above, they would see just fine. He would also take the basket to carry as it should be.

-e-

Date: 03-13-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 10

Position Races

Patrick was up in the tower getting ready for the time approaching the horses would be racing. Eight races this night would be the most they had done in one evening. Position races that would have all new horses caught up with the others in the circuit before the monthly race in a couple of weeks.

Brogan had said he'd be here this night, and here he was in the tower with his cousin going over the listings and names. He was attired warmly as he would be down to the bleachers once the races began. In the interim, he was keeping Patrick company, idle conversation sparse for he'd not interrupt in what needed to be done.

Since Mel was bringing in several horses, she was at the track. She settled in the stands, feeling just a touch nervous. Three of the horses would belong to her brothers when they returned. She was dressed warmly but truth be told, she barely noticed the weather or the breeze that teased her hair.

Patrick took up the megaphone once he noticed Fred out on the field with the red flag in ready. The horses for the first race getting settled in the gates. He gave the megaphone a tap, clearing his throat. "Welcome everyone this night to Falkirk Downs in our Position Races. Starting off at gate number one on down is Black Satin, Fairuzhd, Flickering Steel, Sun and Shadow, Royal Pride, Silken Steel, Black Nymph, Drifting Sands and Fandango. We will be starting soon." It was at this point that Fred gave a glance to the Tower before the flag he held lifted then down. In that second the gates opened as the horses surged forward. "And.. they're off! Black Satin has gained a lead with Royal Pride and Silken Steel not far behind. It seems Fandango is having a little trouble getting out of the gate and going."

Once Patrick made the announcement, he gave a quick grasp of his shoulder before heading out and down to the rail, deciding to watch from there instead of the bleachers. Being not the monthly race, there were not as many here and so wasn't crowded at the rail. He gave a wave to Melantha, noticing her there.

She caught Brogan's wave and waved in returned and then the races began. Leaning forward, she watched, quite interested now.

Chandra was running a little late but she made it in time to watch the first race. She joined her niece in the stands, wrapping her cloak around herself as she sat.

"Fairuzhd has caught up with Black Satin, going nose to nose in the lead. Flickering Steel close behind then Sun and Shadow."

"Flickering Steel has surged ahead of Black Satin with Drifting Sands and Fairuzhd not far behind."

"Flickering Steel is keeping the lead with Black Satin not far behind. Drifting Sands then Fairuzhd with the others lagging behind as we come into the last stretch to the finish line."

"Black Satin surges ahead to take the Win. Drifting Sands came up to Place and Fairuzhd to Show by a nose."

It was a tough race as horses seemed to trade places throughout. Deciding for some company he ventured up the bleachers to take a spot near Melantha and Chandra. "I see one of yours came in.." giving them a smile  as he settled in.

"In the next race starting at Gate number one on down, we have: Cleary's Pretty Milkmaid, Seanchai, Shadow's Steel, Drifting Sands, Black Nymph, Song of Eire, Skye's Epic Outlaw, PaddyBlack and Caramel Dawn." Watching as Fred waited for the men to make sure the tracks were clear before the red flag swung up then down. "And.. they're off! Caramel Dawn has taken the lead with Drifting Sands close behind. Not far behind Sands Outlaw and PaddyBlack are nose to nose."

"Aye, and did well." She grinned at Brogan. I couldn't wait to watch so came down tonight."

"Drifting Sands has pulled ahead with Shadow's Steel close behind as well Outlaw and PaddyBlack."

"Outlaw has taken the lead with PaddyBlack close behind. Following close are Drifting Sands and Caramel Dawn."

"PaddyBlack has pulled ahead with Caramel Dawn coming up behind. Outlaw dropping behind Caramel. Shadow's Steel next behind as they come into the final stretch to the finish line."

"Outlaw got his wind back as he surged to the finish line to take the Win. PaddyBlack Placing with Caramel Dawn to Show."

"Our third race, starting at Gate One on Down, we have: Steel's Price, Song of Eire, Silken Steel, Seanchai, White Sands, Black Satin, Royal Pride, Shadow's Steel and Flickering Steel." Once the crew were off the tracks and the jockeys ready at the gate, Fred swung the red flag up and down. "And.. they're off! We have Black Satin leading the start with Shadow's Steel close behind as well Royal Pride and Silken Steel going nose to nose."

"I don't blame you. Mine isn't racing but I came in support of those I know who have ones here tonight."

She wrinkled her nose, and shook her head. "Didn't do so well that race, but we'll do better." The horses had to get used to the track and their new home. "That was grand of you, Brogan." She grinned at him then watched again.

"Indeed, very nice of you." She chuckled. "They do seem to like running though, whether they're first or last."

"Black Satin is keeping the lead with Seanchai coming up from behind into second place, Steel's Price and Shadow's Steel next in line."

"Seanchai has pulled into the lead with Shadow's Steel not far behind. Black Satin has dropped back to third position."

She stood up, letting out a yell! "Keep going, Seanchai, lad!"

"Seanchai is keeping the lead with Shadow's Steel in second place, Silken Steel has moved up to third with a few nose to nose behind the three as they head for the finish line."

"Seanchai has taken the Win with Shadow's Steel to Place. Song of Eire has come up from behind to Show."

Brogan and Chandra both got hugs. She was quite happy with this race!

He was always willing for a hug as he gave one right back. Settling then with a grin as he waited for the next race to begin.

She laughed as she returned the hug, glad to see Mel enjoying herself.

"For our fourth race tonight, we have starting at Gate One on down: White Sands, Skye's Epic Outlaw, Fandango, Fairuzhd, Cleary's Pretty Milkmaid, Steel's Price, Cleary's Caramel Dawn, Sun and Shadow and PaddyBlack." Watching as the men cleared the field and Fred giving the signal with the red flag sweeping down. "And they're off... We have Caramel surging ahead with Sun and Shadow not far behind as well Outlaw and PaddyBlack."

"Caramel has surged ahead leaving Sun & Shadow nose to nose with PaddyBlack, Fandango very close behind."

"Caramel is keeping the lead with Sun & Shadow behind. Next we have Steel's Price nose to nose with PaddyBlack, Fandango almost the same."

"Caramel is keeping the lead still with Sun & Shadow nose to nose with PaddyBlack for second spot. Steel's Price still in this race and possibly Fandango as they head for the finish line."

"The judges have made their decisions in this close race, Cleary's Caramel Dawn taking the Win with PaddyBlack Placing and Sun & Shadow to Show."

"They're all doing well, aren't they, Aunt Chandra?" She smiled as she looked at her aunt then at Brogan. "What do you think?"

"Very well, Mel." She agreed then gave Brogan her attention. His own horse was a magnificent looking specimen.

"It's a long night for the lot of them, so yes, they are doing very well. It will be interesting to see the total points they earn after each have done four races."

Patrick waited for the men to clear the tracks, giving the jockeys and horses time to get in the gate stalls and be at the ready. "In our Fifth race we have, starting at Gate One on down: Seanchai, White Sands, Cleary's Pretty Milkmaid, Song of Eire, Black Satin, Skye's Epic Outlaw, Fairuzhd, Steel's Price and Shadow's Steel." He watched as Fred waited until the tracks were clear and the jockeys ready. Flag swept up then down, "and they're off! We have Black Satin taking the lead as they start off. Shadow's Steel and Pretty Milkmaid not far behind."

"Black Satin is keeping the lead with Seanchai and Shadow's Steel nose to nose in second, Pretty Milkmaid next in line."

"Black Satin is determined to keep the lead with Shadow's Steel moving into second. Seanchai close behind as well Fairuzhd."

"Shadow's Steel has passed Black Satin by a nose with Fairuzhd and Pretty Milkmaid not far behind as they head for the finish line."

"Black Satin surged ahead to take the Win with Shadow's Steel to Place. Fairuzhd to Show."

"Race Number Six coming up will have, starting at Gate One on down: Royal Pride, Silken Steel, Black Nymph, Flickering Steel, Sun & Shadow, PaddyBlack, Fandango, White Sands and Drifting Sands." Watching for Fred as the men cleared the tracks, all raked up nice as the flag went down. "And.......they're off! PaddyBlack surges ahead as they start off with Royal Pride close behind. Black Nymph vying for third with Fandango and Drifting Sands nose to nose behind him."

"Black Nymph has surged ahead as well Fandango to pass out Paddy, Flickering Steel and Fandango as well leaving Paddy in fifth."

"Black Nymph is keeping the lead but Paddy has pulled back up to second. Fandango close behind."

"Black Nymph is determined to keep the lead with Drifting Sands coming up to second spot then Fandango, Paddy and Flickering Steel as they head for the finish line."

"Black Nymph has taken the Win with PaddyBlack to Place, Drifting Sands to Show."

She was enjoying these races as much as the regular ones. There was something special about seeing horses run.

"In Race number Seven of Eight tonight, we have starting at Gate One: Fairuzhd, Drifting Sands, PaddyBlack, Cleary's Caramel Dawn, Fandango, Shadow's Steel, Black Satin, Silken Steel and Black Nymph." Watching for Fred as the men exited the tracks and the jockeys were in place. The flag lifting then down... "and .. they're off! Silken Steel takes the lead as they start off with Shadow's Steel not far behind. Caramel next with the others nosing it out."

Chandra glanced up at the tower, watching Patrick briefly. "He has a good speaking voice."

"Silken Steel has taken a good lead with Black Satin and PaddyBlack going nose to nose for second. Caramel not far behind."

"Silken Steel is keeping the lead with Black Nymph moving into second spot. Black Satin close behind."

"Black Nymph has passed out Silken moving into the lead. Black Satin next as Silken is nose to nose with Caramel for third as they head for the finish line."

"Black Nymph takes the Win with Black Satin to Place. Silken Steel to Show."

"For our final Position Race tonight we have, starting at Gate One on down: Skye's Epic Outlaw, Song of Eire, Cleary's Caramel Dawn, Flickering Steel, Seanchai, Cleary's Pretty Milkmaid, Royal Pride, Steel's Price and Sun & Shadow."
Waiting on Fred as the tracks took a little bit longer after so many races. The jockeys in their stalls and ready for the signal as it came moments later. With the red flag down. "And they're off! Caramel leads them out of the gates with Royal Pride not far behind. Sun and Shadow coming along with Outlaw and Seanchai nose to nose."

"Caramel is keeping the lead with Outlaw moving up to second spot. Royal Pride then Seanchai."

"Caramel is keeping the lead with Song of Eire to move up to second, Outlaw then Royal Pride as they head to the finish line."

"Caramel is still leading with Song of Eire close behind. Outlaw then Seanchai as they head for the finish line."

"Song of Eire takes the Win with Cleary's Caramel Dawn to place and Skye's Epic Outlaw to Show." Taking a well needed drink as they cleared the tracks. "Ladies and Gentlemen, I thank you all for coming tonight and hoped you enjoyed these Position races."

Brogan stood up and applauded. "Well done Patrick," called out to him, "as well all the jockeys and horses to run this evening."

She stood to join in the applause, smiling from ear to ear. Quite pleased with the results.

Chandra stood as well, turned to look toward the tower as she applauded. "Excellent work, Patrick."

He was tired as he headed out, leaving their hired men to clean things up. He had with him all the results and ledger to mark them in. Updating all so they were ready for the regular monthly race. "Thank you," having come down the bleacher steps to where they were seated. "I hope you can make the regular race come the twenty-fifth."

"I plan to. I quite enjoy this tonight." She gave a nod of her head as she answered. "And I'll drag Melantha with me."

"You won't have to drag me, I promise." She laughed as she linked her arm through her Aunt's. "And now, we should return to the manor."

"It was a pleasure having your company tonight." Wondering why Diane nor Roseann showed, wasn't like them after saying they would. So he held some worry there and hoped it wasn't anything drastic that kept them away. "I will escort you back to the Commons as I am going that way." Then to Patrick. "I will see you soon. I will see about dragging Gus with me to dine at the manor tomorrow."

"We would like to see you there and any of the others." Smile encompassed the three, "stay safe and a good night." Leaving them at that point as he wanted to get back to tuck his son into bed.

"Good night, Patrick." She would have invited him along but there was that urgency. "Thank you, Brogan. " And he, she would certainly be invite in before he headed back, for a nightcap at least.


Which he would be accepting, certainly in the company of two lovely ladies.

-e-

Date: 03-25-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 11

March Registered and Hometown Races

Patrick was in the tower making sure all papers were in order as he tapped the megaphone. Gates were open as ones filtered in. "Welcome this night to Falkirk Downs. We will be having six registered races and the Hometown as usual after the completion of the others. The stand is open with hot food and drinks if anyone is interested. We shall be starting shortly."

Brogan was in the tower with Patrick for a time until it was getting near when the races would start and so headed down to the bleachers where he could choose a seat with a good view of the tracks. Not too close nor far.

Broch was already in the bleachers with blankets spread over the wooden slats to make them more comfortable and invitation for those coming in to join him.

Just arrived, and after she had Buttercup settled, taken care of, she swept back and turned to ease in through the gates to prowl through the seats. Her hair was down and long, chocolate brown full of waves and loose curls. She tipped a glance over the ones already settled in, perhaps searching for a certain face. And she found him. With a cheeky grin, she headed Broch's way to settle down next to him.

Bullying Roseann into coming with her to the races hadn't taken much. Diane just had to promise not to embarrass her, not to do anything to annoy Brogan, pack a basket with flasks of hot tea and some of Sassy's cookies, grab a blanket... the list went on. Allowing her twin to force her into clean riding gear, the dark hair was neatly braided and tied off with a ribbon as she led Sacristan towards the stands for the hometown race. Nothing under heaven and earth persuaded Rose to ride, however. "Come on, Rosie... it'll be fun. I promise."

In that case, he headed over to where Broch was, leaving room between of course. "Evening Broch, Gaelle," grin growing a bit before getting out his slip with the horses he bet on.

"Good evening," she said, flashing a smile up to Brogan, and another to Broch. She'll try to be on her best behavior, honest.

Gus was in his usual spot, at the fence, arms resting on the top rail where he could watch and then slip out once the races were over.

"Guid eve tae yea Gaelle and o' yea Brogan." Sliding an arm around Gaelle in a quick hug said more than any words.

She followed after Diane with a long-suffering sigh bourne of patience with her sister, picking up her hems so as to not drag along. The basket was carried in her free hand, reaching for the rail to start up and find a seat. "Aye, so you say. I'm here, am I not?"

"I've missed you." She admitted when she leaned into Broch's hug, which was returned, one armed, just like his has been. She grinned as she straightened.

Gerrard had offered to escort Concessa to the races, and had made his way to the Manor in plenty of time. It was a distance to the races. Mel and Chandra were unable to come so they'd be representing the stables. "Looks like we're in time." He had been worried they'd be late.

"Aye," she mimicked, "you are. Let me tie Sacristan off and I'll be right up. Pick where you want to sit, but make sure we can see the track." That said, Diane went to hand her horse off, muttering to herself not to give in to wagering with the Frasier males this time.

"To be sure as I will." To the stairs and up went Roseann, stopping a moment for the sight of so many already present ere she continued on, climbing to a pair of seats with a fair view. She took out the blanket for spreading, the flask of tea and the sweets for enjoying, leaving plenty room for Diane.

"Yes it has," she was on the quiet side as she noticed all the others, giving a smile if she happened to make eye contact. Wool cloak worn would keep her warm though it wasn't as cold a night, thankfully.

Brogan was watching as Diane and Roseann made their way in. A slow smile lifting as well a hand in wave ending in a gesture that they come join him, Broch and Gaelle. Gus too unless he wanted to stay at the fence.

He smiled as he escorted her up to the stands, nodding at anyone who looked their way. He had brought a blanket for them to sit on. "I didn't realize it was a bit of a party." Chuckling at the spread the others had.

Words lowered as he waved to the two Cleary sisters as well Gerrard and the lass he was with. "Aye, we s'all speak later o' anot'er time soon. Yea 'ave been missed."

Coming up, she caught sight of Brogan's wave and returned it with one of her own, holding up a finger to indicate she'd be there if Rose agreed. Going to her sister, she spoke in a low tone. "We can sit with the others if you want, Rose... it'd be good for you to meet them."

Gaelle lifted her hand to wave to the Clearys, tipping up a smile. She nodded when she heard Broch, then her attention tipped down to the tracks. Teeth gently bit down on her lower lip, before she went to digging for that slip of paper. It was somewhere.

After a moment, he pushed off the fence, and wandered up to join the others. "Evening." Giving a nod to everyone in general.

"Evening." She said with a smile to others as they joined the small group. Paper found, she glanced over it, her eyes squinting.

"Aye, well enough. Help me, then?" She started to clear away the blanket and aught else that they might see to sitting amongst the others. A bit of a smile tugged her lips to Brogan and to Fearghus, the two as she knew best.

Watching for the flagman as the jockeys were getting ready at the gates. "For our first race, starting at Gate One on down, we have, Silent Thunder, Altair, Cinnamon, Hunting Demons, RW Blackbird, Bayda Farasha, Drifting Sands, Harvest Gold, Golden Lady and Black Rose."

He had forgotten his for all he had been doing of late but then, if he won, it was donated to the Orphanage.

"Of course. Your horse is in this race, Rosie." Jumbling everything together in the blanket, Diane trundled it down to sit just behind the main group, straightening it back out so the two could sit and watch. A quick wave acknowledged Patrick too.

"Good evening Diane, Roseann, have you met the others?" Knowing they knew Gus as he introduced the others, "this is Gaelle Thorpe and Broch Cunningham." They may have met his brothers.

A dark glance tipped offside to Broch, then she smiled when she heard the introduction. She knew Diane. "Evening." Little wiggle of fingers to the two.

"Guid tae meet yea Diane, Roseann. I bae know'in yea brot'er Allan and o' Victor. Mic'ael tae." Offhand as he figured they were all related.

"Evening, ladies. That gent there is Gerrard MacShire. I haven't met the lady as of yet." He figured he should do a little introducing himself since he had met Gerrard previously.

Patrick was standing in front of the glass panels, wall height, as he waved to the group, acknowledging Diane with her wave as well. Smile was there before the Flagman was read. As it went down, "and they're off!"

"Evening everyone. This is Concessa Quinn, Melantha's sister." He was picking up names here and there.

"Hello, Gaelle, Broch." The silver-blue eyes rested on Brogan for a moment. "Brogan," then shifted to Gerrard and Concessa. They looked familiar, she thought. "Good evening."

"We have Bayda pulling into the lead with Cinnamon and Golden Lady close behind. It seems RW Blackbird and Harvest Gold are having a little difficulty getting started from the gates."

"Good evening, Concessa. I'm Gaelle." She smiled to her, then her attention flickered down to watch the race.

There was a touch of pink against her cheeks as they were introduced, "good evening. Very nice to meet you all." And hopefully she would remember the names. The start of the race caught her attention, there quick and back. "Nice to meet you Gaelle." Staying close to Gerrard as she felt out of her element presently. She knew in time that would pass.

"Aye, it's a pleasure be known to you all." Not so comfortable in the company of others as Diane was, her smile was shy but warm, taking seat beside her twin. "Is not Cinnamon one of yours as well?"

So was Thunder. He chuckled as he leaned forward, elbows resting on his knees. "Evening, Concessa and welcome to the realms." Not sure if she had just arrived but ... well, there it was.

"Bayda has dropped behind a few, Golden Lady taking the lead with Hunting Demons coming up from behind while Cinnamon still determined to get that lead."

"Yes, she is." Nodding at her sister, Diane remembered her manners and tore her gaze from the race to smile in a more friendly manner at Concessa. "We don't bite, I promise. Oh, and if anyone wants them, we brought cookies. Aunt Sassy's fin... come on, Cinnamon!"  ...Oops.

She grinned when she heard Diane, even a quiet laugh trickled from her mouth. She leaned forward as she watched the horses race on.

"Golden Lady is keeping her lead with Cinnamon not far behind. Drifting Sands and Bayda leading the others behind the two."

"Thank you Gus," deciding to say their names to help her remember. "Diane, Roseann, Broch, Brogan." Taking a seat as focus turned on the horses. This was exciting as such a glance was given Gerrard, certainly pleased he offered to escort her here. A smile for Diane's friendly comment.

Roseann sighed, shaking her head. Sure and Diane could not help herself in the excitement of the races. Picking up the box of cookies, she offered them round to be friendly.

When the box passed her way, she took up one of the cookies with a smile flashing to Roseann. "Thank you."

"I hope you both enter the Hometown races later. Should be able to get in some bets." Maybe. Recalling a conversation with Roseann as a hand lifted to run against the back of his neck a moment.

He winked at Concessa then chuckled as he watched. A cookie was also accepted once the box came his way and he offered it to Concessa. "Thank you."

Gus shook his head at the offer of a cookie with an easy smile then he glanced toward Brogan. Just a quick grin before his mind was back on the race.

"Cinnamon has passed out Golden Lady to take the lead, Bayda moving up to second with Golden Lady falling back to third. Hunting Demons and Drifting Sands could prove an upset still as they head for the finish line."

Roseann always was such a lady. It was a point of pride to Diane, but... she was distracted, leaning forward to encourage her Cinnamon on.

"Bayda manages to pass out Cinnamon to take the Win, Cinnamon taking Place and Hunting Demons managing to take Show."

-c-

 
Date: 03-25-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 12

"Hmph." She grumped, but still pleased.

"Coming up in our Second Race we have, starting from Gate One on down: Spartan, Gypsy Prince, Fairuzhd, Shaya, Smoky Trails, Shadow's Steel, Casey, Blackmoor's Sage, Dapper Dan and Steel's Price."

"Mmm. Need a bigger bribe next month." He decided as he leaned back to watch the rest of the races.

He wouldn't pass up a cookie as the box was passed. "Did you make these Roseann?" Looking between both sisters wondering if they both baked.

She leaned back a bit, flicking a glance around in between races.

"Na, our aunt did, with Diane's help. Aught I bake is sand into glass." She smiled to Brogan as she handed him the box and whispered, "Diane made the ones with the chocolate to them."

"Thank you," softly spoken as she took one of the cookies as well when the box passed her way. Brought about a smile as she was finding everyone she met so far very pleasant.

Diane shot Concessa a sheepish grin, aware she'd just about shouted at her horse. At least she hadn't told Cinnamon to move her bloomin' arse yet, but the night was young.

He would get his cookie was well. Took only one bite as he mumbled something about the races being close. Came out like, "mmm baaaddaa hassslooongleegs."

She blinked and stared over at Broch.

If she did, that would break the ice nicely for she'd probably start laughing.

Hearing Broch, she had to ask, "Broch? What language is that?"

"I'm impressed Diane as well for your Aunt Sassy." That was before he started laughing hearing Broch. "You don't say.."

Hey, he understood. "Aye, she ... he does." Wasn't sure if the horse was he or she!

"It bae cookieanease. They are delicious."

"I'm beginning to wonder if he's talking about a horse or another lady named baaaaaaadda." She said the name with the bleating sound of a sheep.

"Yea dae t'at sae well, Gaelle," robust laugh to follow as the arm around nudged her a little closer before eased again.

As the flagman gave the signal, "and they're off!"

"Mm, all it takes is a little practice." She buffed her nails along her shoulder, proud. And leaned in to him when he nudged her closer, grinning.

"Are you after saying he is a baaaaaad boy, Miss Gaelle?" Roseann sought to tease gently, trying step out of her accustomed shell and taking a cookie of her own ere she looked to Brogan. "Diane's a fine cook, so long she pays mind to what she's about."

"Oh, quite b-a-a-a-a-d." Doe eyes, nodding to Roseann!

"Gypsy Prince surges to the lead as they start from the gates. Fairuzhd, Smoky Trails and Spartan not far behind. Dapper Dan had a little trouble getting started."

"...I heard that, Rose. Just for that, I may put salt instead of sugar in your porridge." Smirking slyly at her twin, she chuckled, hearing Gaelle, then slitted her eyes to Sage. He better get his equine butt in gear!

"Aye, yea all got mae pegged. T'at bae mean'in Gaelle 'ere likes bad boys.."

"I only like one bad boy, thank you very much." She tipped up her chin, snickering.

"You don't rise early enough to see it done, sweet sister." Correcting Diane, Roseann laughed softly. "Saved the worst for best, Gaelle?"

"Exactly." Quick nod that time, wide smile that showed her teeth. She slanted a dark look up to Broch then, and winked!

There seemed to be something wrong with his horse as he would look into it later. "Gypsy Prince is keeping his lead, Fairuzhd and Spartan close behind. Smoky Trails and Blackmoor's Sage leading the others."

Making a face at her twin, she hopped off the seat to draw closer to the rail so she could talk to Concessa without shouting. She'd already embarrassed Rose enough so far. "Which horses are yours, Concessa?"

Which he gave a wink right back, then a slight chin up as the horses were pounding the tracks.

He was amused how Roseann was coming out of her shell around her sister. Didn't say anything or he might stick his foot in his mouth as he had a habit of. Instead he was listening while watching the race.

She had to look back down to the paper in her hand, a brief glance before she peered back to the track. She leaned against Broch, watching silently.

"Fairuzhd has pulled into the lead with Gypsy Prince falling back to second spot. Blackmoor's Sage has moved up with Spartan not far behind her."

"I have not a horse but my sister has the Royal Stables." Quietly but then Diane was near as the race caught her attention again. She didn't know all the horses names yet.

She could do naught but smile, watching Diane trying not to permit the race absorb her entirely, and nigh failing.

"Gypsy Prince is fighting it out with Fairuzhd, pulling into the lead again with Fairuzhd in second spot. Blackmoor's sage still in third with Spartan not far behind as they head to the finish line. Gypsy Prince takes the Win with Blackmoor's Sage passing out Fairuzhd to Place, Spartan stuck with her as well to Show."

Two horses had placed; she nodded to herself in satisfaction. The changes to the training were working, thankfully.

"Coming up we have starting at Gate one, Roxanne, Cleary's PaddyBlack," which they might hear him clear his throat before continuing, "Renegade Star, Silken Steel, Court Jester, Blacke Magick, Fandango, Justified Silver, Red Knight and Brandy & Rum."

He could only hope that Blue did well in his race.

Watching the Flagman as the signal was given, men off the tracks that made sure they were cleared each time between races. "And they're off!"

Roseann looked a bit wary for the second horse named and looked to her twin. Sure and that was not a horse she knew coming out of Golden Dawn.

When Patrick called his namesake, she tried not to snicker.

"We have Black Magick taking the lead from the gates with Roxanne, PaddyBlack and Red Knight nose to nose a pace behind. Roxanne has pulled ahead of Black Magick with Justified Silver coming up to third. The others not far behind and all vying to take the lead."

Her attention was on the race, and she slightly bit on her lower lip, a little twist forward as she watched.

"Roxanne is keeping the lead but second spot has Justified Silver and Red Knight close behind as well Renegade Star."

Grumbling to herself, she leaned forward to watch Magick and PaddyBlack both.

"Roxanne has a good distance lead at this point, Justified Silver with Blacke Magic and Renegade Star nose to nose as they head for the finish line. Roxanne takes the Win and we have Justified Silver to Place. An upset with Red Knight coming up from behind to Show."

The frown was quick to form, along with the mental note to increase Magick's stamina training.

He grinned, knowing young Joshua would be pleased with Red's showing.

"Coming up for our Fourth race we have, starting at Gate One on down: Flickering Steel, Dusky Princess, Song of Eire, Just Dandy, Black Satin, Rip Roaring, Skye's Epic Outlaw, Drop the Act, Gold Dust and Morgan."

"Yea bae winn'in any coins t'ere Galle or just eating lip?" Teasing her as he was enjoying the night out, races and good people for company.

"I've won some." She grinned up to him. Then, because -he- started it, "Well, I'm having to chew on mine because you're too far away." Never mind she's leaning against him.

He leaned back a tad and extended his bottom lip as far as it would go. Baiting her.

Which looked absolutely hilarious. Instead of leaning in for the bait, she cracked up.

Once the track were clear, the Flagman gave the signal. "And they're off! We have Dusky Princess and Black Satin surging ahead nose to nose for the lead. Just Dandy a pace behind them, Gold Dust and Drop the Act."

And since it was a running joke, she remembered to bring a couple of things with her tonight. She hummed as she watched the race, blindly reaching inside of her cloak. It took a bit of a pat down, then there was a tip of a blue ribbon pulled free, most of it still inside her cloak, but it was emerging, bit by bit. Almost like a magic trick of some sort; like a magician pulling hankies and scarves from his sleeve. Only this was one, really, really long, ribbon. So straight faced, was she!

"Black Satin has passed both Princess and Dandy who are nose to nose behind Gold Dust at this point."

"Yebbe gointaae tibb t'ab abooomae libbb?" Sucking it back in before it was flapping in the wind or got cold.

If this keeps up, she won't get to 'play' with Charlie anymore. "Mm. Nope, won't be your lip." Her head shook slowly. She pulled the ribbon free finally. It was about as long as Broch was tall.

"Dusky Princess had enough and surged ahead to take the lead, Black Satin not far behind with Gold dust and Flickering Steel leading the others. Princess is still keeping her lead with Flickering Steel moving up to second spot, Gold Dust then Black Satin. As they head to the finish line!"

"Princess takes the Win with Gold Dust coming up fast to Place, Flickering Steel to Show."

She listened to the winnings and made a little pout. The ribbon was coiled up around her wrist, a loose wrap.

He nodded approval and glanced at the others then at Concessa. "Are you enjoying watching?" He asked in a low voice.

"Very much, it's quite enthralling." Another reason why she was quiet. "Maybe next time I will place some bets." It would make it even more exciting.

 
-c-
Date: 03-25-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 13

"Aye?" Lifting a brow with a growing grin. "Yea bae tell'in mae t'en o' surprising mae?"

"Hmm." Thinking that over, she turned her attention to Broch, squinting her eyes. "I'll surprise you." Grin!

"Did you place any bets Diane? Roseann?" Looking between them. He wasn't sure how he was doing as he was more watching the races than checking his list.

"I did." Glancing over her shoulder at Brogan, she nodded. "I don't know if Rose did."

"For Race number Five we have starting at Gate One on down: Shooting Star, Jack, Black Nymph, Ash and Stone, Wrong Turn, Cleary's Pretty Milkmaid, Windchaser, Seanchai, White Sands and Rag Doll." Watching the flagman give the signal once all was ready, "and they're off!"

"We have White Sands pulling into the lead from the gates. Black Nymph and Windchaser nose to nose behind, Seanchai close behind them."

"Your horses are doing well, Diane." He grinned at her. "I know, I know." He held up his hands as if to ward her off. "They could do better."

"Black Nymph has pulled into the lead with Windchaser close behind. Jack, White Sands then Ash and Stone."

"I hope you are doing better than me in betting." Giving her a wink as he was also watching this next race. Hard to tell who would come up from behind to take the win when all said and done.

"I'm doing fair, between my own horses and some of the others." She smiled faintly at him. "Are you not having a good month?"

"I bae t'inking I'll bae lik'in t'is surprise." Giving her a wink right back as the grin remained.

She snickered quietly. The ribbon was toyed with while she watched the race.

"No. Thunder didn't place." He chuckled and gave a slight shrug. "I don't know how well I'm doing in betting. I forgot my slip but I like watching them run."

"Windchaser has taken the lead with Black Nymph in second place, Jack coming up from behind to third, Rag Doll then Shooting Star."

Her mouth formed into a little circle. She leaned forward, definitely watching the race now.

"Windchaser is keeping the lead, Black Nymph then Jack. Shooting Star and Rag Doll of which either could come up from behind as they head for the finish line."

"Windchaser takes the Win, Jack to Place and Black Nymph to Show."

She smiled, leaning back again. The ribbon unwound from her arm, she shoved it all away, into hiding for now.

"Race Number Six, our last before the Hometown, has starting at Gate One on down: Cleary's Caramel Dawn, Legacy and Lace, Royal Pride, Phantom Flame, Lace Stockings, Ala' al Din, Blue Lightning, Trading Chances, Sun and Shadow, and Cream N Sugar." Waiting for the Flagman on the signal once the track were cleared. "And they're off! They all have a good start with Lace Stockings out in the lead. Legacy and Lace, Phantom Flame and Caramel Dawn all close behind."

"Caramel has pulled into the lead with Phantom Flame close behind. Lace Stockings, Legacy and Lace heading the others. Caramel is keeping the lead with Phantom Flame still close behind. Lace Stockings and Cream and Sugar nose to nose ahead of the others."

She looked over the paper that rested on her thigh. Once, twice, then after names were tucked to memory, she folded the paper and tucked it away. Eyes on the race.

"Caramel is keeping the lead, Phantom Flame still in second spot. Royal Pride has come up just ahead of Legacy and Lace as they head for the finish line. Caramel Dawn takes the Win with Lace Stockings coming up from behind to Place, Phantom Flame to Show. There we have it for the Registered Races. Anyone wanting to enter the Hometown race head for the Flagman Fred, give the name and that of your horse to ride."

He stood and applauded as the races finished, not only for the horses and their jockeys, but for Patrick himself.

"All right," standing in a stretch. "I bae bett'in yea for t'at mile long blue ribbon yea got." Giving Gaelle a wink as they always bet something.

"Are you going to ride, Gerrard?" She was up to it and would ride one of the extras they had until she got her own horse.

"What?! What are you going to do with it?" She eyed Broch as she stood up. "Okay, well, we'll do it this way; the winner gets the ribbon." Easy enough?

He stood as well, clapping his hands. "Nicely done, Patrick." Shouting up at the tower, and as always, he headed for the stables to collect Thunder and head back. Well, actually, he was heading to Falkirk for the night. He used the races as a reason to visit.

"Aye, I think so." He motioned toward where his horse was waiting, attached to the back of the surrey. "Shadow would never forgive me if he missed it." Giving a wink.

"Aye, and t'e loser gets tae put it on them.." Either way no one lost but that was how they betted. He was down to get Hercules, escorting Gaelle with him. "Of us two 'n t'e race." Not so much who won the race overall.

Since Rose had... disappeared, she went after Sacristan, determined to give it another shot.

She started down to the flag man, snickering. Giving her name, and Buttercup's, she collected her horse and was quick to hop onto the mare's back. "That's fair. You have a bet, Broch." Tipping him a wink.

"Perhaps you will place a bet with me, Diane. A batch of cookies if I win?" He had enjoyed the one.

Stopping, she peered up at him. "Are you racing?"

He was down to borrow Prancer. "Aye, I thought I'd give it a try."

"Hmmm. Everyone is betting. Should we?" He chuckled as he listened.

Patrick gave Gus a wave, he could watch from the tower with him if he wanted. Keep him company. He was going to see about sharing the announcing of the races next time so he might socialize some.

"I don't know what to bet but I'm willing. What would be a good bet?" Little Lady was brought out for her to ride.

He could do that, then join him in the ride back.

"Well, what about the loser makes dinner." He could cook a decent meal.

"I could do that." It had been a while since she cooked but she could. She would get her sister's help if necessary. Smile came as it was a good bet. She mounted up Little Lady and got use to her before shown into the Gate.

"And if I win?" Curious now as she untied Sacristan to lead him to the gate, she arched a brow.

A runner was sent up to him with the names needed. "We have from Gate One on down: Broch riding Hercules, Gaelle riding Buttercup, Brogan riding Prancer, Diane riding Sacristan, Concessa riding Little Lady and Gerrard on Shadow."

"I will make you cookies?" Which he cleared his throat as that would not be much of a win. "I will give you a night at the Casino paid for or a dinner," hearing that one being made, "a ride through the country side.." She could have her pick.

Brogan's dinner would be bought though! Shadow pawed the ground and he chuckled. "Behave you. No showing off." Now the horse would probably run the wrong way.

"Hmm..." Tapping a finger thoughtfully on her chin, her eyes glinted at him. "A batch of cookies for a batch of cookies. But if I win, I want to watch."

"A deal. You wish to witness a disaster in progress." Giving her a wink as he was up in the saddle. Prancer was easy to handle as he was shown to a gate.

She led Buttercup into the proper gate, where she waited, silently.

"You might win, Brogan, so we'll see." Grinning back, she settled in her saddle.

Once everyone was ready and he given the signal, the gates opened up, "and they're off! We have Broch and Gaelle," deciding to use their names instead of the horses for this race, "nose to nose in the lead, Concessa not far behind, then Brogan, Gerrard and Diane." He was trying not to laugh.

He blinked and looked at Patrick, then did laugh!

He was leaning forward, "I want t'at ribbon, I want t'at ribbon.." chant with a look aside as Gaelle was really trying to pull ahead.

She grinned, slanting a look aside her to Broch, to wave, since they were right next to each other.

Well, Shadow wasn't exactly running in the wrong direction. He laughed and tried to coax him forward.

"Whooooooooooooooooah," surprised sound as she was hanging on as Little Lady surged ahead. Wind tossed the length of her hair about and into her face as she tried to lean forward.

"You really want me to win Diane so we both survive a batch of cookies." Calling over his shoulder as she was not that far behind him.

"Gaelle wants to win as she has pulled ahead of Broch, Concessa moving up to second with Broch and Diane nose to nose. Gaelle might get jealous!" He couldn't help it. Really. "Gerrard next with Brogan taking up the end."

She leaned forward, cracking up laughing as she listened to Patrick. Her heels dug into Buttercup's flanks and she leaned forward, tilting closer to the mare's neck. "C'mon, Sweetstuff."

"Gaelle is keeping her lead as well Concessa right behind her. Broch is no longer rubbing noses with Diane as he moved ahead, Brogan has passed out both Diane and Gerrard, who the latter is now taking up the rear."

He was planning the dinner from start to finish. Maybe he could bribe his Da, Tara and Autumn to take an overnight trip so he could clean up the kitchen before they got back.

"Aye, I got me t'e view!" Being two ladies were in front of him leaning forward. He was NOT complaining.

"Broch Cunningham don't make me turn this horse around!" What.

Oh, this was not going to happen. Bending low over Sacristan's neck, she murmured encouragement.

She was holding on for dear life. It had been some time since she rode like this, racing no less. Laughter started up as she was really enjoying it.

"Catch me if you can, Diane..." taunting in a tease.

"Gaelle is still in the lead with Concessa next in line. The others are moving up but seem to exchange places often. Brogan with Diane, Diane with Brogan, Brogan at the tail end as Gerrard rubs noses with Diane."

-c-

Date: 03-25-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 14

She was rubbing noses with a lot of people. Thank goodness Rose wasn't around to see it!

They could hear the laughing as much as he tried to muffle it. "Who will end up on top and who will end up on bottom as they head for the finish line."

She managed to spare a flat look for Patrick before nudging her heels into her horse's flanks. Cookies were on the line here.

"Gaelle takes the Win, Concessa to Place, Gerrard and Diane to Show. They will each get the third prize of a bed size quilt. Gaelle wins the Phaeton Carriage and Concessa a Puppy to choose." At least he left out.. instead of sharing the one! "Congratulations to all who not only came tonight but participated. I shall see you again in a month." Which he could finally sit down for a few and have a drink before he and Gus would head out.

Good thinking.

Shadow had moved forward at the last, and he chuckled as he patted the horse's neck. "Good job, Shadow." Thank you for that, Patrick!

She hadn't expected to win! Not first place. She laughed as she slowed the mare to a prancing gait, then finally a walk.

"And I owe you dinner, Concessa." Hmmmm. Maybe seafood?

"That sounds great. Whatever you feel comfortable cooking." She was thrilled and couldn't wait to tell Mel, Gemma and Chandra. She would get to have a puppy too.

And maybe some food? Gus would be glad to retrieve it for him.

"Cookies al' la' charcoal.." teasing as he walked Prancer to cool him down.

"You're not allergic to anything?" That would be a disaster.

"No. Where will we have this dinner?" She might need a chaperone.

Easing Sacristan into a cooling walk, she let her eyes glint down at him. "I can just see you in the most adorable apron, Brogan."

They may have three. "At my home, if that's all right." Or at least Autumn.

"Don't forget the chef's hat or... one or the other?" Apron would probably be needed, full armor possibly!

"Both, certainly." She grinned, swinging down from the saddle.

"If Chandra doesn't mind." Being she was sort of in charge of such being the oldest at the Manor of family.

He squinted an eye at Gaelle as he finally dismounted. Letting go of the reins as Hercules would stay close but moved away a pace. Nothing said as he lifted his arms out in wait. Grin was there too.

"I can have my sister chaperone, if that makes her more comfortable." He dismounted and was over to give her a hand down.

"I will let her know then let you know. Something can be worked out." Giving a shy smile but certainly genuine as she dismounted with his help.

She was watching Broch, Buttercup pulled to a stop. She turned slowly, then slid from the saddle to bounce, right into his arms. She smiled up to him, then dug into her cloak. That long strand of ribbon was pulled free, carefully, but she didn't simply pass it off to him. No, she had to be cute about it all. She loosely, very loosely wrapped it around his neck. So loose that it looked like he was wearing blue ribbon necklaces. She snickered.

"Perhaps before the week is out or by the weekend, beginning of next week at the latest?" That gave some days to work with that would be convenient to her. "There is a kitchen at the Casino, so daytime when it's not open unless at the Thistle if I can convince Hazel to let me use it." That would be iffy but he would put on his best charm.

"Whenever you're feeling domestic is fine with me. Your schedule isn't as flexible as mine." Patting Sacristan's flank, Diane was satisfied. At least she hadn't lost the wager this time.

The loser got to put the ribbon on the other if he remembered correctly so he pulled on the end, slowly like he was stripping. Weaving it around above his head, then in circles off to the side as he moved closer, moving it around her as the breeze helped in the effect before he was winding it through her hair, round and round, having parts sticking out here and there in small pony tails. Like a fountain spouting.

"What kind of cookies do you like best?" Being he never made any, might as well burn the ones preferred!

"Even if I do it at the Manor." He grinned at her. "Just so no one minds me being in the kitchen."

Of course, she couldn't see what her hair looked like by the time he was finished. Though she didn't stop him. Her brows arched and she appeared rather amused. Her head tipped and she cocked out her hips, striking a sassy pose. "Well, how do I look?"

"Grand, like a fountain nymp'," as he leaned in to pluck a kiss to her lips, then stepped back. Grin was growing, "yea look guid 'n blue."

She smiled for the kiss, after it had connected to her lips. "Perhaps I should buy more blue things, then?" Her brows waggled, suggestively.

Impish eyes twinkled at him. "Charcoal?"

"Now, yea bae tell'in mae w'at ye originally 'ad 'n mind fer it?" Coming closer as laughter glinted in burnished green eyes.

"Now, that I can make!" Laughing as one never knew, not even him until he tried his hand at baking cookies. Maybe there were instructions he could get to follow.

He led Shadow over to the surrey and tied him then returned. "Are you ready to head back?" It was a distance back but he had blankets for their legs. "You'll be able to pick out a puppy at the kennels." That would be fun for her.

"Ah, I'm pretty sure you can guess, what with the ongoing joke about all of the kilts." She grinned up to him, standing her ground as he moved in closer.

"Well, if needed you can do it at our Manor. Whichever would be best suited." She couldn't hide the smile listening to the others teasing each other.

"Ye bae t'inking I bae a 'orse?" For certainly the length of the ribbon. He threw his head back briefly in a quick laugh as he drew her into his arms next.

"Would you like me to tell you how to do it?" She watched his face, seeing the expressions pass over it.

"You were the one saying somethin' about a bastard sword." She murmured. Okay, so, that did make her blush. She nuzzled in close to him.

"Aye, I could use a little help if that is not cheating." He knew she could bake cookies and it would be preferable if most of them could be eaten!

"Aye," wrapping her up into his arms easily. "It is long enoug' tae bae a blue ribbon sheat'." Dipping his chin with a wink and enjoying that blush.

"You'd be doing the work. I'm just... offering helpful advice." Looping Sacristan's reins over her arm, Diane nodded to him.

"First we'll see what Chandra says."" He chuckled and looked at the others then offered his arm. "Shall we?"

Her eyes widened only faintly. "At least I tried to stroke your ego there. I could've brought a piece of ribbon like this long." She lifted her hand, all fingers curled except for her index finger and thumb, where a rather short gap of space was inserted between them.

Which had him lifting a brow as that glint was there. "T'en I bae 'iding it and yea could gae find out w'ere it bae." Slow grin rising with a wink added.

She cracked up laughing, her cheeks quite red. She leaned up to blot a kiss to the line of his jaw, then glanced to around them.

Which had him run a thumb over her cheek like one shinned an apple. "T'at bae yea color." Hand moving to cup her cheek as he dipped enough to catch the tail end of that kiss to his lips. It was quick, so as not to embarrass any of the others. Especially since he suspected Concessa was young. "I 'ave missed yea," and their usual bantering.

She would've commented, but he was kissing her. So she held off. She smiled up to him, deciding to break away from the teasing, just for a moment. "I have missed you. Greatly."

"Yes, please, it is getting late. Chandra will probably be waiting up as well my sisters. You will get to meet them. We can ask her tonight."

"Aye, I'll do the messy part." Which he was starting to look forwardto being he never made cookies before. "Can I see you home?" He would escort her being Roseann took off earlier. He hoped she was all right.

"If you'd be so kind." She smiled at the offer, though she was more than ready to go, concerned about Rose.

"Good, since we didn't have time earlier. Good night, everyone. It was good to meet you all."

"Good night," she offered to those leaving. Her hand lifted in a wave.

Smile came softly upon the others as dark eyes turned there. "I really enjoyed this night, meeting you all and sharing it with you." She was grateful.

"It was a pleasure s'aring it wit' yea Concessa," being it was time to go so they could get the place closed up. Arm around Gaelle as he gave a whistle for Hercules to follow. They would walk a little before riding the rest of the way back. "Guid nig't tae yea all, stay safe a' warm."

"It was very nice to meet you, Concessa." She was smiling, and leaning against Broch, her arms around him. She sort of rocked from side to side, a brief dance before she turned to walk beside him. And Buttercup, the flirt, marched up right behind Hercules, then to his side. Tail slash!

Prancer was taken back to the stables as he offered the bend of his arm. It wasn't far to walk from here and he would enjoy the company while keeping hers. "Good night everyone. I enjoyed the night as well. Maybe see you all next month."

"Good night to you all." He led her off to the surrey, making sure she was comfortable before lighting the lanterns and heading off into the night.

"Good night, and good luck next month!" Taking his arm with one and keeping Sacristan in the other, she was prepared to be left off.

Hercules and Buttercup were old friends as she got a swish of tail right back before a nip.

She snorted in response! Silly mare.

-e-

Date: 04-22-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 15

April Races at Falkirk Downs - First Night
 

Patrick was late, his son was certain there was a boogeyman under his bed. Each time he calmed him down, reassured him there was nothing, he'd start to scream bloody murder when he was almost out the door. It woke Hannah up, along with everyone else in the manor he was certain. Finally they got him in bed with one of his cousins and all was well, Hannah would keep an eye on him. He rushed in, up the steps and into the Tower. One could tell by how he sounded over the megaphone. "Weeelcccoomme.." huff huff, "thiiisss niiight to Falkirk," sucking in a breath. "We'lllll be starting real soon."


Concessa braved coming alone this night, escorted by a guard from the Thistle, she found a seat on the bleachers, watching others as they came.


Gus had been about to speak into the megaphone when Patrick came rushing in. He grinned as he stepped back, then poured his cousin a glass of the pure. It should help him or maybe make him worse?


He had come with Gus and was leaning off to the side in the tower, not very sure what he should do or even if he should be up here. As Patrick rushed in, he blinked in surprise then chuckled. Ah, the life of a parent. Luckily, there was plenty of help in Falkirk.


Handing the reins to her newest acquisition off to the waiting stablehand, a mare named BÍte Noire, Diane went to find a seat, a slight smile curving her lips to hear Patrick out of breath. She doubted it was for any enjoyable reason either.


Ham stood beside the bleachers with his eyes raised to the tower. He would smirk in silence as he crosses his arms over his chest. He'd go unnoticed for as long as he could. It wasn't that he didn't love his family, because he was very loyal. It was just the fact that they were ready to roast him alive since he hadn't shown his face around the tracks in a while.


Brogan had waited at the tower in case Patrick couldn't make it for some reason or another and would take over for him if Gus didn't. Giving him a clasp on the shoulder he would leave him to announcing as he headed down to the bleachers to take up a seat with the others, one that happened to be near where Diane was.


He would have much preferred it had been another reason he was out of breath but that was a faded memory presently. Having caught his breath, giving him the few minutes needed he started the announcement for the first race. "For the first of four races this evening, we have starting at Gate One on down, Morgan, White Sands, Fandango, Spartan, Harvest Gold, Silken Steel, Blue Lightning, Altair, Silent Thunder and Bayda Farasha." Watching the flagman give the signal as the flag went down, "and .... they're off!" He wasn't ignoring his cousins but trying to catch up, hoping they understood.


With Brogan leaving, David did the same. Mostly because he wanted to watch the race from the bleachers. He leaned forward, elbows resting on his knees as he watched the horses.


A smile acknowledged Brogan, along with a wiggle of her fingers while she settled in to watch the race attentively. Diane had been pursuing a more active course of training with Blue and wanted to see its effectiveness.


"Blue Lightning has bolted ahead of the others to take the lead from the gates, Altair not far behind with Spartan and Silent Thunder nose to nose."


Once he was certain Patrick was all right, he too headed out of the towers. Spotting his brother, he was over to join him, clapping a hand to his shoulder. "Evening, Ham. Good to see you getting some air."


He gave a flagging wave to Ham, "get your hamhocks over here! Come meet the lovely Diane and Concessa." Moving down so they could make a group. Nudging David to do the same, "come meet my brother David."


"Altair has surged ahead with Silent Thunder not far behind. Blue has moved into third position as they head into the third stretch. Harvest Gold needs a fire lighted under him."


Ham flashes a lopsided grin at his brother while uncrossing his arms. He reaches his arm around Gus to give him a good pat on the back while perking up a bit at hearing his name. He moves forward towards the small group while briefly glancing to the track.


"Altair is keeping the lead but not by as much. White Sands and Fandango have moved up to second and third positions, Morgan not far behind Fandango."


He blinked in surprise, then stood and moved down to where Brogan had gone. A nod was given to the two ladies, together with a warm smile.


Gus moved right along with Ham, grinning at the small group. "Always a pleasure to have company."


"Fandango has moved ahead of Altair to take the lead with Altair falling back behind Morgan who has moved into second position as they head for the finish line."


"My brother David, my cousins and yours, Fearghus, Graham, Patrick in the Tower announcing. The ladies Diane and Concessa." That way everyone had names.


Dark eyes lifted a little wide with quite a few Frasier men being introduced. Her smile shy but warm. "A pleasure to meet you David, Fearghus and Graham." She had met Diane as she moved closer to where she sat, keeping an eye on the horses while listening to the announcements too.


"Ah, so this is the elusive brother you were telling me about... well met, David, and welcome to Heathfield." She tore her gaze from the track long enough to smile at him, and then again at Concessa with warmth, making plenty of room for her. "I'm glad you were able to join us again, Miss Concessa."


"The results are in, Morgan takes the Win, Fandango to Place and Altair to Show."


Ham couldn't help but grin at the ladies. He bowed his head in respect to each of them before reaching for each cousin hands to shake firmly. "Aye. It is good to see ya..." He trails off as he listens for the results.


"A long story, even I haven't heard all of the tale of yet." Which he planned to sit down one night and exchange tales. They were half brothers, same father. A minor technicality at this point.


"David, welcome. A pleasure in the meet, Concessa." He quieted for the results being announced.


"A pleasure to meet you all." He inclined his head slightly then looked toward the track after shaking Ham's hand. "Thank you, Diane. And yes, a tale to be told soon."


"I find I like watching the races. I placed bets this time but I forgot the slip." The blush rising on her cheeks but she was honest about it. Lucky to get here, having thought she brought it but alas, no where to be found in her small purse, more like a pouch made of material that matched the gown under the light cloak.


Once the men saw to making sure the track was clear of any debris, a signal from the flagman would be given. "For our second race, starting at Gate One on down, Ash and Stone, Blackmoor's Sage, Golden Lady, Drop the Act, Drifting Sands, Royal Pride, Dapper Dan," which he paused with a grin before continuing, "Cleary's PaddyBlack," another pause as the grin got bigger, Smoky Trails and Jack." Watching as the flag went down, "and they're off!"


Diane allowed herself a slight chuckle at Patrick's grin; she hadn't said how she'd name the horse after him, but nodded at Concessa. "I'm bad. I never remember mine, to be honest."


"Ash and Stone surges ahead with Jack not far behind as well Golden Lady. PaddyBlack and Golden Lady are necking and the others seemed to have difficulties at the gate." Far different start than the first race.


"I don't feel so bad then," words were quiet with a glance slipped over cousins and brothers before upon the tracks, leaning up as they started. "Oh, some are way behind."


"Neither do I to be honest." He gave a slight shrug then turned to watch. "Aye, it happens."


"Ash and Stone is keeping the lead with Jack coming up into second position, Blackmoor's Sage in third with the others still lagging but not as badly."


Ham couldn't help but whistle as Ash and Stone whipped down the track. He crosses her arms back over his scrawny chest with his eyes focused on the field.


"Blackmoor's Sage has passed Ash by a neck leaving Ash in second position. PaddyBlack in third with Dapper Dan along with a few others not far behind as they head into the fourth stretch. Blackmoor's Sage has taken the lead again with Dapper Dan moving up into second position. Jack and Ash are nose to nose for third with PaddyBlack a nose behind. This has become a close race folks as they head for the finish line."

 
"Races are always uncertain," she agreed, "But that's what makes them exciting." Hearing about Sage made her bounce in her seat, trying not to call out.

"The call is in, Ash and Stone takes the Win with Dapper Dan to Place and C PaddyBlack to Show."  Now he was grinning from ear to ear!


Ham punches the air with a loud hoot.


"For our Third race this evening, starting at Gate One on down, we have, Sun and Shadow, Just Dandy, Renegade Star, Cleary's Caramel Dawn, RW Blackbird, Cleary's Pretty Milkmaid, Roxanne, Gold Dust, Phantom Flame and Seanchai." Watching the flagman as he waited for the tracks to be cleared before bringing down the flag, gates opening at that moment. "And....they're off!"


At that, she burst out laughing. "Figures he'd come in ahead of Sage."


"Sun and Shadow surges ahead with Blackbird not far behind, Phantom Flame then Caramel Dawn. Quite a few are having trouble at the gate in getting out." Which the flagman noted and motioned to one of the hires to check them out. The gates lifted correctly but better to make sure.

"Sun and Shadow is keeping the lead, Phantom Flame has moved up to second position, Caramel Dawn, Blackbird and Milkmaid as they head into the third stretch."

"Blackbird and Phantom are nose to nose for first position with Sun dropping one behind. Roxanne and Gold Dust are necking it out.. They are struggling to keep first position heading towards the finish line, Sun has moved back up to first with Phantom in second and Blackbird falling back to third. Will another come up from behind?"

"The results are in, it was a close race for second and third. Sun and Shadow takes the Win, Phantom Flame to Place and RW Blackbird to Show."


Graham whistled loudly again as he checked his paper. He would hiss out a curse or three, but wouldn't do so with the ladies present so he just slumps his shoulder slightly as he leans on the rail.


"For our Fourth and final race tonight, we have starting at Gate One and on down, Rag Doll, Brandy and Rum, Red Knight, Shadow's Steel, Black Nymph, Casey, Gypsy Prince, Cream-n-Sugar, Windchaser and Black Magic. Remember, tomorrow night we will have the last two registered races along with the Hometown race, hope to see you here!" Watching for the flagman as it went down, "and.. they're off!"

"Rag Doll surges ahead to take the lead out of the gates with Windchaser close behind as well Red Knight and Gypsy Prince. Only Black Nymph had trouble at the Gate. Rag Doll and Gypsy Prince are nose to nose in the lead. Brandy and Windchaser as well nose to nose in second position as this is becoming a close race already."

"Brandy has pulled ahead with Rag Doll close behind. Black Magic has pulled up from those lagging to move into third with Windchaser and Gypsy Prince not far behind. Brandy is keeping her lead still with Rag Doll in second position, Black Magic then Windchaser as they head for the finish line."

"The results are in, Brandy and Rum takes the Win with Black Magic coming up from behind to Place and Rag Doll to Show. That concludes the races for tonight, I hope to see you all here tomorrow." Setting the megaphone aside as he looked over the sheets making sure all was correct. It was as usual. Next was to kick back a good swallow of the potcheen left for him, thanking Gus silently.


"Good races," He marked down the winners to compare with his picks later. Deciding he would rather not know necessarily while here so it didn't get him grumpy.


Ham yawns a bit into his hand before turning around to face his family. "Good good races," he'd mutter with a shrug.


"Hmm, yes they were." Agreeing with Brogan, she got to her feet, hoping all was well with Concessa. Diane made a mental note to invite her out some time soon, to get to know her better.


"Blue didn't do so well," sliding a glance Diane's way, seemed he had a good start but then dropped behind. "I'm pleased Ash and Stone did well for you Graham, maybe you brought him luck being here.." he also hope Concessa was well, having noticed her take a quiet leave with a guard to escort her back.


He leaned forward to watch the last race then stood and applauded to Patrick and for the horses. "Aye, it was. I enjoyed it."


"We can talk about Blue another time. I won't keep you from your family." She saluted him cheekily, but with a smile.


He nodded in agreement with just about everyone then chuckled. "Tired, Ham?"


"I might have you talk to Blue this time, he doesn't listen to me.." green eyes lit with mirth as a slow smile lifted in place.


He dips his head in a nod as he yawns again, "Just a bit. Been running long hours at the shop before Easter, and now it is just starting to slow back down to normal."


Patrick was down after closing up the Tower room, to lay a hand on David's shoulder as he drew near. "Good to meet you David, are you staying with Brogan? The Thistle? You're welcome at the Manor." In case he needed a more permanent place to stay until he got settled.


"It's good that you're doing well though. Patrick got a warm smile as he answered. "I'm staying at the Thistle. I wasn't sure I was going to stay but I think I will now. And I'd like to come to the Manor." He'd be able to get to know the rest of the family. "At least for a little while. I think I'll be needing to contact Laird McDonough I think it is?" A glance was given to Brogan in question.


"We have plenty of extra room, plus there is never a dull moment there. Though if you prefer dull, there is a wing of rooms set far from the children." Giving a nod as he looked up towards Brogan.


"I don't mind excitement." Or children for that matter.


"Laird McDonough or a few others of equal standing. You can leave a note with Alex tonight." He was pleased he was going to stay, knowing in time he would find it the right decision. The near whole of their family here was good cause right there. "Will you be coming to join in the Hometown race tomorrow, Diane?" He needed to think of a good bet to draw her into. After all, she won the last so chances are he would win this time.


Eyeing Brogan as she collected herself, she flashed him a quick grin. "I was planning to. I have a new horse to test. Why?" The silver-blue eyes sparkled teasingly. "Want to make another bet, Brogan?"


Ham yawns again before giving a slight wave to the group. "I need to be on my way. It was good to see you all. I promise I'll be out and about soon," he spoke softly as he began to walk off.


"I think I should start back too." He offered a hand to each of his newly found cousins, clapped Brogan on the shoulder and bowed to Diane. "I plan to be here tomorrow so I'll see each of you then."


"I'll join you, David. I'd stay the night at the manor but I have a delivery to make tomorrow. Good night to you all, and I'll be here as well."


"If you're heading back, I'll join you as well. I've as son to check on in making sure the boogeyman didn't get him. If he did, he got his cousin then too who has a wooden sword to poke him with." Which meant he needed to get his son one now as well. "A pleasure seeing you again Diane, give my greetings to Roseann and the others." Bowing out with a clasp to Brogan's shoulder before on his way.


"Good night, David. Have a good night's rest." She smiled more politely at him, but affixed the gleaming silver-blue on Brogan, waiting for his reply.


"I will see you all soon. I will escort Diane home when she is ready." Hand going over Patrick's as it laid upon his shoulder for that brief moment.


"Good night to you both then." He would enjoy talking to his two cousins as they left.


"Good night and again, a pleasure to meet you, Diane." And off they went.

 

-e-

Date: 04-23-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 16

April Races - Second Night
 

Patrick was in the tower going over the papers of the horses to race this night along with the Hometown race and prizes to be awarded. Gates were open and the first ten were getting ready at the gates. He tapped on the megaphone to make sure it was working properly as ones started to arrive. "Welcome this night to Falkirk Downs, we are getting ready for our first race. Have something to eat or drink at the concession stands and make yourself comfortable. Our first race tonight will have starting at Gate One on down, Shooting Star, Legacy and Lace, Dusky Princess, Wrong Turn, Lace Stockings, Song of Eire, Black Rose, Justified Silver, Black Satin and Flickering Steel. There are a few minutes still for anyone to get a bet in if they so wish."


Lizabet had wandered the stable off from where her brother was checking over some of the thoroughbreds before the second race. She was impressed. Hearing the announcement she made her way over to the stands to find a seat that offered a good view of both track and horses. There was that electrifying feel in the air, the apprehension of which horse would come in first and of those who had placed bets including herself.


Gus once again arrived with David, having stopped at the Thistle to gather his possessions so David could stay at Falkirk. Gus would join the family at the manor tonight as well. He lifted a hand to wave at Patrick up in his tower before finding a seat. "Evening, Miss." Giving a friendly smile to Lizabet before sitting.


Brogan had been up in the Tower with Patrick until the races were about to begin, once his cousin got that megaphone in hand, he headed out to choose a spot on the bleachers. Catching sight of Gus he waved and headed there. "Lady McKnight, you're welcome to join us." Being it didn't seem she was with anyone. He had met her briefly in the commons a few days past.


David was a tad nervous about meeting the rest of the family but he was also looking forward to it. Of course by the time they'd arrive, the children would be in bed. He waved at Patrick, smiled at the lady and greeted Brogan with a grin. He waited until the young lady joined them and sat before he did so himself.


Lazare paused at the entrance, first checking the track, then turning his gaze to the stands. Patrick's announcement brought his attention up toward that tower. Seemed like it was time. He hadn't placed any bets but then, he wasn't familiar with any of the horses. Tonight that would change.


"Lizabet," smile turned upon both the men, one recognized as Brogan. Dark eyes held a twinkle in them for her first night at the races since her arrival. "I would be pleased to join you," words barely out as she caught sight of Lazare. A pleasant surprise to see the kingsman here. "Lazare, over here, come join us and meet some of Frasier men." Most likely he knew them all. Taking up a seat near the gents as she settled in. Sliding glance towards the Gates but they had not started yet.


Brogan was still standing and would remain so until the lady took her seat, "my brother David and cousin Fearghus," glancing up to see if any of the others made it. "My cousin Patrick is in the Tower Announcing, Lizabet," being she had corrected him on calling her Lady McKnight. A wave then to Lazare in welcome that he join them as well.


He returned the lady's greeting and invitation with an uplift of hand and did just that, his steps taking him to join the others where he took a seat. "Evening. Evening." A nod to each and all as he settled in. "Tell me quick, Lizbet, which one is your brother's horse?" Although he watched the gate for a moment, he was soon looking all around to get acquainted with faces and the place itself.


"Evening Sir Lazare." He nodded then sat finally and turned his attention to the race track.


"A pleasure, Lizabet, Sir Lazare." He nodded to both then sat. Nice night again, though cool.


"Unfortunately my brother doesn't have a horse in the races, he sees to them as the veterinarian. Of which I will be assisting him in the future. Although I find the idea appealing to procure a race horse or have him if he is interested." Or both, a notion tucked away to pursue later. "Although you might be interested in how the Royal Barrett stable horses do. Dusky Princess is one of them in this first race as well Justified Silver." If he was looking to rally on any particular horses.


His mouth formed an animated 'oh' since he had misunderstood earlier that her brother had a horse racing tonight. He pulled his attention from the lady over to where the horses would bolt free from the gates. "Ah, well then, one of the Royals I will set my sights on, thank you." A nod her way even if he still watched the gates in anticipation. He didn't have the faintest idea which horse was which, but he soon would and Lazare was a patient man.


Patrick waved to his cousins and kingsman as well the lady accompanying them. Though he kept his sights on the flagman as the signal was given, the gates opening. "And they're off........ Legacy and Lace surges ahead out of the gates with Shooting Star and Wrong Turn not far behind."

"Legacy is still keeping the lead as others come up from behind. Shooting Star then a three way neck and neck between Dusky Princess, Wrong Turn and Black Satin."


He thought he had picked Legacy but wasn't sure since he had forgotten his betting slip again. He leaned forward, elbows resting on his knees as he watched.


"Legacy has fallen back with Dusky Princess taking the lead position, Shooting Star close behind. Wrong Turn and Flickering Steel neck to neck."

"Dusky Princes and Shooting Star are neck and neck for first position, Song of Eire neck to neck with Flickering Steel just behind the first two. This can be anyone's race as they head for the finish line."

"The results are in, Dusky Princess takes the Win, Song of Eire to Place and Shooting Star to Show."


The Barrett horse it was! Lazare smiled to himself as he made a mental note of that.


She raised up clapping for the horses and jockeys as they finished the race. She had placed bets but had forgotten to bring the slip of paper. Perhaps it was the well spent afternoon.


He grinned as he let out a whistle. It was always interesting to watch the horses race, even if ones picked lost!


"For our Last Registered Race tonight before the Hometown race, we have starting at Gate One on down... Court Jester, Hunting Demons, Rip Roaring, Steel's Price, Ala' al Din, Trading Chances, Cinnamon, Fairuzhd, Epic Outlaw and Shaya." He was watching as the men cleared the tracks, making sure they were safe for the next ten horses.


She seated herself again with a smile. "Now, next time I will make sure to make both races."


A cant of head took in the standing, clapping woman. Intriguing. Patrick's voice brought his thoughts to a halt and back to the racing field.


The flagman held up the red flag, standing where everyone could see him and he of the gates. The flag down, the gates opened, "and.. they're off!"


"Last night's races were every bit as good." He nodded before eyes were back on the track.


"Steel's Price surges ahead with Rip Roaring close behind, Ala' al Din and Court Jester. Hunting Demons having some trouble at the gates."

"Rip Roaring has come up to take the lead with Steel's Price dropping back to second, Trading Chances and Court Jester not far behind them."

"Trading Chances is now a nose ahead of Rip Roaring with Fairuzhd nose to nose with Rip, Ala' al Din an Court Jester leading the others as they head into the fourth stretch."


Lazare became quite aware of how these races could become addictive. Sitting forward, his fingers laced and tightened as the horses pressed for the win.


"Fairuzhd has broken away from the others to surge ahead taking the lead, Hunting Demons in second spot with Rip Roaring nose to nose with Cinnamon. This is a very close race as they head for the finish line."

Everyone could tell it was a hard call as many of the horses all seemed to converge on the finish line near at the same time. "We have the judges decision, Fairuzhd takes the Win with Court Jester to Place and Trading Chances to Show."


She was up clapping once more, "isn't this exciting. From here it looked like most of them were at the finish line the same moment."


"Aye, it was." He stood to join in the clapping. He would hate to be one of the judges in that situation.


"For those of you who would like to enter the Hometown Race, let the flagman know and of what horse you will be riding. If you have not one, there are four horses available, Thunder Thighs, Little Lady, Ropin' The Wind and Prancer."


"Come Lazare I will challenge you to ride and a bet to sweeten the challenge. A full course meal of your choosing if I should lose and one Lesson with the Sword if I should win." Perhaps she wanted to see the breathing exercise firsthand.


Now, who would be racing tonight? He looked at Lizabet and laughed softly. Brave lass!


Brogan called up to the Tower where Patrick was, "I'll ride Thunder Thighs in your stead tonight, Patrick." Grinning as he headed down to support the race and participate.


Lazare laughed, looking up to the lady. "A full course meal?" A squint of eye made it look as if he had to consider this. He stood. "Done then. A meal for a lesson. Sounds fair enough to me." He motioned with his hand then offered it to her to follow Brogan down to the track. "I'll take the Little Lady."

 

David was up and he punched Gus lightly in the arm. "Are you going to ride that horse of yours tonight?" They had been talking about it on the way. "I'll take whichever horse is left if you do." Meaning of the four of course.


"Ugh. I said I would though he's not much of a runner." He was over to give his name and the name of his horse. Molasses.


"I'll ride Prancer and at the worse I'll have a good view," of backsides but that didn't need to be mentioned. The sweet smile might say it all as she made her way down with Lazare and informed the flagman. The horses were ready, inspected already as she gathered her skirts and was up into the saddle, straddled. She was used to riding. "Now, you need to keep a nose ahead of the Little Lady." Informing Prancer.


And that meant David had Ropin' the Wind. "All right, my four legged friend, do your best and we'll get along fine."


A single pat was offered to his mount's neck and he mounted...ready.
 
-c-

Date: 04-23-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 17

A runner brought up the names and horses as well which gate as Patrick made the announcement. "We have at Gate One, Brogan Frasier on Thunder Thighs, Gate Two, Lazare on Little Lady. At Gate Three we have Lizabet on Prancer, Gate Four, David on Ropin the Wind and last but not least, Gus on Molasses at Gate Five."

"Good luck to you brother, I'll wager you both 25 copper that I can beat you no matter who actually wins the race." Called over as he got into Gate One for the race.

 

Neale Fraiser remained from the crowd, watching the first two races and now the preparations for the Hometown Race. He stood where he was, arms crossed over his chest, waiting for this race to begin.


"You're on. What about you, Gus? Same?" He didn't mind losing some coins for a bit of fun.


"Aye, aye. I'm in too." He chuckled and he guided Molasses into the Gate. "Be the easiest money the two of you won." So much faith in his horse!


She slid a smile the Frasier men's way. "Good luck to you all." Wink given Lazare as she prepared for the Gates to open.


A returned twitch of a wink to the daring woman and he leaned to whisper in his horse's ear. "This is for a dinner, lass. Be a dear, will ya?"


He was watching the flagman who was making sure all were ready at the Gates as well giving them the few moments to place their bets. Such was the way of the Hometown race over any prizes won. The flag was down as the gates opened, "and they're off!" Echoed over the whole of the race tracks.


His horse seemed to have a mind of her own. But didn't most females?


"We have David taking the lead with Lizabet close behind, Brogan needs to know how to get Thunder to move those Thighs! Lazare then Fearghus getting a slower start."


Didn't he say the horse was slow?! He was laughing as he brought up the rear.


"Little Lady seems to be minding her rider as she surges ahead to take the lead, David then Lizabet close behind. Brogan and Gus are necking in the back."


"Come on, Ropin'." Now he was laughing as Lazare jumped ahead. He'd have to ask his secret.


"David on Ropin the wind has surged ahead to take the lead, Lazare on Little Lady holding second while Lizabet and Gus rub noses, Brogan watching from behind, still unable to get his horse to make thunder with her thighs."

"David is keeping his lead with Lazare not far behind, Gus then Brogan as Lizabet falls behind as they head for the finish line."


She was urging Prancer on but then realized the view she had being last. Such a grin but she wanted to at least keep up as she was falling that much behind.


"Come on Thunder Thighs, if you can do it for Patrick you can do it for me," encouraging the mare forward.


What happened to Little Lady? It was almost as if her rider had tugged lightly on the reins.


The race was close as the results were in. "David riding Ropin the Wind has taken the Win, Lazare on Little Lady to Place and Fearghus on Molasses to Show. David wins the Oriental Corner Cupboard from MacGrath Furniture, Lazare wins a puppy of his choice from Meadowland Kennels and Gus wins five bottles of champagne from McCullen Vineyards. Thank you all for participating this evening."


At the finish line, Lazare turned his horse to watch Lizabet cross. He offered her a dip of head. Dinner it would be and he'd be grateful for it. His winning which was announced shot a look up to the tower. He knew exactly who'd benefit from that puppy. A pair of twins...and the pup would be female too.


He would cough up his 25 copper each for David and Gus as he reined in Thunder Thighs.


He was laughing as Molasses moved forward, and took third! Brogan got a grin. He'd be giving 25 to David.


"You also win a full course meal of your choosing." Walking the stallion the few paces as she caught up with Lazare. "You need only to tell me that which you enjoy most."


Neale nodded and smiled, cutting a look up to where he knew Patrick looked down upon the events. As always Patrick did not fail to please and the participants looked to have enjoyed themselves completely. He touched his fingertips to his temple in a modified salute to his brother then turned to leave. Falkirk called to him and the Duke had never and would never deny that call as long as he was able.


David was actually just holding on for dear life! He hadn't expected the horse to do that well but he was laughing as he turned the horse. And he had won something for his house once he had gained it.


Lazare edged his horse closer to Lizabet's, actually making a full circle around her before reining up at her side. "It is the meal I rode for, m'lady. And I will leave the which of it to you. I'm a man easy enough to please."


"Then I shall think upon a few hearty menus, one to sate a man such as yourself. You seem to be more the beef man, steak with lobster on the side over turkey or chicken." Having halted the stallion as she sat watching him circle her. "Of course I will try for another chance to win next month. Redeem myself," lifting her chin just a touch but there was laughter in dark eyes and just a hint of a curl to the edges of her lips.


Lazare chuckled. "I am what you will have me be." He dipped his head to her, smiling still with her challenge. "A meal a month? In such lovely company? I look forward to it."


"Then I shall be extra careful in the food selected. Perhaps a barrel of oysters would be all that is needed," certainly she would tease the man for he was delightful to tease. Especially if she caught him off guard, gave him moment to pause and clear his throat. "Of course my stakes will go up."


Lazare's horse backstepped, almost as if it shied away from the woman's suggestion. He cut a look over his shoulder to the others. They seemed far enough away and in their own conversations not to give much thought to theirs. "Lady, oysters will not be necessary, I assure you." He clicked his tongue to edge his horse closer again. "And the stakes will be yours to decide." Lazare pulled his leg around to hand over the horse to the lad come to collect her. He gave her a light pat on the neck. "You did good, lass, you did good."


"I'm going to head out, find a card game," and he knew just the place! "Care to join me, David? Gus?" Having dismounted to hand over the mare to one of the stable boys.


"Something to note worthwhile, oysters not needed." She would keep within propriety but she could still tease just enough. "I will see if Hazel will allow me the use of her kitchen." Leaving it to be a surprise for Lazare as she hinted on a few dishes but not saying exactly what she planned. It could be something totally different than implied. Dismounting with ease, guiding the material of her skirt until feet touched upon solid ground then handed over the stallion to the stable lad.


He looked thoughtful then nodded. "Aye, I'll join you." He led Ropin' to the stable boy who waited, and thanked the horse quietly. "You did good."


He had started over to help her but it seemed the lady had everything under control.


"Good night to you all!" Waving to the others before heading out with brother and cousin. Giving Patrick the thumbs up if he wanted to join them as well. He knew where they were headed for a conversation earlier.


"I think I will." He had closed the shop for the day so pretty much could do as he wanted. He saluted Patrick, then waved to the others. "Good night, Lizabet, Lazare."


"And to you!" Lazare called out to the departing Frasiers.


"Good night! It was a pleasure to meet you." Adding his voice to the farewells.


"Good night, a pleasure meeting you and seeing you again Brogan." Giving them a wave then focus to turn back on Lazare, "can I entreat you in having a nightcap at the Thistle?"


Lizabet made it even easier for him to smile. "I can't think of anything I would enjoy more then to continue the night with you, m'lady. However, I fear I had best return to my castle rooms. I enjoyed my day with you...and tonight."


She gave a dip in curtsey as her smile grew, "I enjoyed the day very much that ended with the good fortune, twice, shared in your company. A good night's rest be yours and I shall be in touch in negotiating a good time for that meal." She saw to her bets but in this case she looked forward to the company. She found his to be wonderful and a friendship growing.


He offered her a bow. If he did not leave her now, he would give in to his wants more than his needs. "The sooner the better for me, Liz-bet, where that meal is concerned." He offered her his arm. "May I see you safely somewhere?"  No, she hadn't needed an escort here but the hour was later.


She would catch up with her brother if he was still about. The thought had her glancing to where the horses of the workers were. Not that she could really see which ones were still there then back with a warm smile with his offer. "Yes, thank you." Being in Ballicastle lands she figured he rode in as well. She would head in that direction where the horses were kept of those attending.


"Excellent." And thus completed his night.

 

-e-

Date: 05-26-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 18

Falkirk Downs May Races
 

It was that time again as Patrick tested out the megaphone, his voice ringing out loud and clear over the whole of the Race tracks and buildings. "Good evening everyone, in a few minutes we will be starting our races." Which anyone there would notice the jockeys getting the horses into the gates for the first race. "In our first race, we have starting at Gate One on down, Black Satin, Ala' al Din, Rag Doll, Legacy and Lace, Drifting Sands, Cinnamon, Bayda Farasha, Spartan, Dapper Dan and Dusky Princess. Anyone needing to get in their bets, still have a few minutes to do so. The stands are open for food and drink, please make yourself comfortable. The weather should hold out and if not, you'll find umbrellas under the seats."


Brogan was running a little late from the Casino and finally left Charles in charge so that he could be here at the races. Still dressed up, he had rushed, arriving as the first racers were announced. A wave to Patrick in his Tower as he passed and up into the bleachers to take up a seat in their usual place.


David had joined Gus in coming to the track and was already seated. He had waved at Patrick earlier and did the same with Brogan, inviting him to join them.


Gus didn't mind the weather but he grinned when he heard about the umbrellas. The three Frasiers could join their cousin in the tower if it started to rain too hard. He leaned to wave at Brogan and offered him a drink from his flask. Potcheen would ward off any chill from the rain.


He took the flask and a long drink from it. "There is more up in the Tower," giving an upnod in Patrick's direction. "Helps to keep his throat from drying out with all the announcing," slow grin with the idea.


Patrick was watching Joe the flagman as it finally went down, the gates opening up as the horses charged out. "And... they're OFF! Black Satin, Spartan and Dusky Princess are running neck to neck with Drifting Sands a nose behind with Legacy and Lace along with Bayda not far behind them in this start from the gates."


He chuckled then leaned forward to watch the horses. Though he had brought his betting sheet, he hadn't looked at it yet.


"Drifting Sands has surged ahead to take the lead with Spartan, Black Satin and Legacy not too far behind. It seems that Ala' al Din is having trouble this race. Drifting Sands is keeping the lead with Spartan, Legacy and Dapper Dan all vying to take that lead. I hope that Donovan McKnight is about this night," as he worried there was something wrong with Ala.


That didn't sound good. He frowned slightly but then his eyes shifted to the race again. The leaders were sure determined. At this point, it looked like it was anyone's race!


"Drifting Sands is still keeping the lead but not by much. Legacy, Spartan, Dusky Princess, Dapper Dan and Black Satin could still win this race as they head into the final stretch. The race was close," pretty much as he predicted it would be, "Dusky Princess surged ahead to take the Win with Spartan to Place and Drifting Sands to Show."


"Amazing, little Dusky Princess really wanted the win this race!"


"That was an excellent race." He said though he was watching Ala being led off the track. "Yes she did." He chuckled as he looked at Brogan. "Plucky little lass."


"In our Second race, starting from Gate One on down we have White Sands, Fairuzhd, Jack, Renegade Star, Blacke Magick, Morgan, Ash and Stone, Silken Steel, Cleary's PaddyBlack and Drop the Act." Waiting on the flagman who was waiting on the last of the track crew to clear the track and make sure all was in order for the next race. As the horses were readied in the gates, the last crewman off the track, the flag went down, the gates opened up and Patrick called out, "and they're off! Ash and Stone has surged ahead with White Sands, Jack and PaddyBlack. PaddyBlack has broken from the clutter to surge ahead taking a good lead. Blacke Magick, Ash and Stone along with Jack and White Sands still struggling to get ahead."


"Come on, Ash!" He yelled out for Ham's horse then grinned at his brother and cousin. Usually quiet but he was rooting for family. Besides, he had bet on the horse.


"Ash and Stone has broken free to catch up with PaddyBlack as they are nose to nose. Jack, Renegade Star and Blacke Magick still determined to get ahead."


Family loyalty was good! He laughed, cutting a glance toward David before letting out a whistle for the two leaders.


"PaddyBlack has managed to pull ahead again with Ash and Stone still holding second position. Blacke Magick, Jack and Fairuzhd still contenders as they head for the finish line." He waited for the judges to make a final decision, and word sent for how close the race was. "Ash and Stone has won it by a whisker, PaddyBlack to Place and Jack to Show."

"Our third race this night, we have starting at Gate One on down, Seanchai, Lace Stockings, Roxanne, Wrong Turn, Cream and Sugar, Flickering Steel, Justified Silver, Black Nymph, Case and Gold Dust." The tracks cleared, the flagman gave the signal as the gates opened up, "and they're off! Black Nymph and Gold Dust surge ahead nose to nose in taking the lead from the Gates. Justified Silver close behind with Cream and Sugar behind him. A few seemed to have a slow start at the gates," which had a few of the men to make sure they were all in proper working order. "Black Nymph has taken the lead with Justified close behind as well Gold Dust."

"Justified Silver has moved ahead to take the lead. Black Nymph falling back to second with Gold Dust not far behind. Cream and Sugar is leading the rest behind those three. Justified wants to win this race in keeping the lead as they head for the finish line. Gold Dust moving ahead of Black Nymph as it seems between these three who will win for the distance." Though there could always be that surprising upset. "Justified has taken the Win, Gold Dust to Place and Black Nymph to Show."


"Well done!" He shouted for the winners and indeed, all the horses and their jockeys.


Brogan stood, saluting them all with the flask of potcheen. "I do think I made some money on that race," he didn't bring the slip so that he could be surprised later. He recognized the ones he bet on as the names came up.


"In our Fourth Race tonight, we have starting at Gate One on down: Shaya, Sun and Shadow, Court Jester, Hunting Demons, Blue Lightning, Red Knight, Trading Chances, Windchaser, Fandango and Cleary's Caramel Dawn." The tracks were combed over, the horses and jockeys ready at the gate as the flagman watched then swung the red flag down. Gates were immediately opened.. "and they're off! Court Jester was out like a bat out of hell, leaving a few confused near the gates. Sun and Shadow following close as well Hunting Demons and Shaya." The rest were not doing as well but it was only the start.


"I'm hoping I have on all of them." He grinned at Brogan settling into watching again and ignoring the cooler air.


"It seems a few have picked up with Blue Lightning coming up to take the lead, Hunting Demons then Court Jester as the three out in front. Hunting Demons has pulled into the lead with Blue just behind, Shaya and Caramel Dawn not far behind Blue. Hunting Demons is keeping the lead with Caramel Dawn coming up behind as well Shaya. Blue falling back to forth position with Court Jester right behind him as they head for the finish line."

"Folks, we have a real upset in this race," talk about exciting as a few pulled up from behind, passing out the two leading! "Blue Lightning has pulled back to the lead taking the Win. Shaya has pulled up from behind to pass out Hunting and Caramel to Place. Fandango came surging ahead to take Show."


He was standing as he watched the final stretch of the race. "Now, that was exciting." He sat again then leaned forward slightly, resting his elbows on his knees. "I think Thunder is the next race."


Brogan was in shock.. SHOCK! Sitting there blinking as Blue took the win.


"For our Fifth Race tonight, we have starting at Gate One on down: Smoky Trails, Cleary's Pretty Milkmaid, Silent Thunder, Steel's Price, Harvest Gold, Blackmoor's Sage, RW Blackbird, Brandy and Rum, Golden Lady and Shadow's Steel." Taking note of Joe as he made sure all was clear and the jockeys ready on the horses in the gate stalls. The flag going down to cue Patrick, "and they're off! Harvest Gold takes the lead out of the gate with Brandy close behind, Golden Lady , Pretty Milkmaid and Blackmoor's Sage."


He looked at Brogan and grinned, clapping a hand to his shoulder. "Looks like your lad is coming around, aye?"


He hadn't realized Brogan was in shock and nudged him. "Congratulations on the win."


The first few words out of his mouth were a little incoherent, something about not turning him out to pasture as he still had it in him. Coming out of the shock as he let out a roaring laugh then saluted with his flask and a good drink of the potcheen to follow.


And it looked like his lad was goofing off again!


"Blackmoor's Sage has pulled ahead of Harvest Gold, leaving him nose to nose with Brandy. Steel's Price, Golden Lady and Pretty Milkmaid still vying to get ahead. This promises to be another exciting close race as Harvest Gold takes the lead again. Steel's Price coming up to second leaving Blackmoor's Sage nose to nose with RW Blackbird."


"C'mon ye great lout!" He yelled out, though he was laughing. "Or there will be no extra oats!" Thunder seemed more interested in looking around then racing. "Must be spring fever." He might just put the beastie to stud instead of racing.


"Blackmoor's Sage has pulled ahead again with Pretty Milkmaid coming up to second position. Steel's Price, Brandy and Harvest Gold still striving to take the lead as they head for the finish line. Cleary's Pretty Milkmaid pulled ahead to take the Win. Blackmoor's Sage to Place and Harvest Gold to Show."

"For our Final Race tonight, we have starting at Gate One on down: Just Dandy, Gypsy Prince, Altair, Black Rose, Shooting Star, Rip Roaring, Skye's Epic Outlaw, Royal Pride, Phantom Flame and Song of Eire." Keeping an eye on Joe as he waited for everyone to be ready before the red flag went down, "and ... they're off! We have Rip Roaring out of the Gate and into the lead with Royal Pride and Song of Eire close behind."

"Rip Roaring is keeping that lead tearing down the track with Song of Eire not far behind. Shooting Star holding third position while the others struggle it out. Rip is still in the lead with Star moving up to second position. Third position is nose to nose with Song, Royal and Black Rose. Shooting Star has pulled into the lead with Rip falling back to second position. Royal Pride in third with Black Rose, Song of Eire and Phantom still in this race as they head for the finish line. Shooting Star was as fast as her namesake to secure the Win. Royal Pride surging ahead to take Place and Song of Eire coming up from behind to take Show."

 

It was at that moment as the horses were being led off the tracks that the sky opened up in a downpour. Within two minutes there were puddles forming on the track in the deluge. They had been lucky up to that point but it held out no longer. "We will have to cancel the hometown race as it would not be safe to race in this.." needless to say as many were rushing from the bleachers to find cover or get in their carriages and head home. "Thank you all for coming, we shall see you next month, god willing."


It seemed the best place to be would be in the tower and that's where he headed, not checking to see if brother and cousin were behind. That rain was cold!


Gus was right on David's heels. They could warm up a bit before facing the ride home. Or at least back to Falkirk.

 

Brogan wasn't going to sit out in the rain, least not how this was coming down. He was up and moving quickly with his brother and cousin to join Patrick. They could sit and enjoy it from the tower while they had a few drinks, wait it out until it piddled out and then head up to the manor.

 

-e-

Date: 06-18-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 19

Falkirk Downs Position Races
 

It was a fine night to get out, away from the port for a change. Hearing about the new horses to be run to get them fitting into the circuit, Adrian headed there. Riding in to Ballicastle with the idea of staying overnight at Falkirk Manor and catching up with family. Family was important. He dismounted once within leaving the stallion he rode at the hitching post, one of many for those who came any of the nights there were races. Once done he headed for the bleachers, picking out a spot that would have a good view of the track.


Though David had yet to make a decision on buying a horse, he spent a lot of time at the tracks when he wasn't working. The business at the office was picking up and he was having to make himself get away. He had been at Falkirk Manor earlier, enjoying the company of the family and had decided to go to the track to watch the races being run for the new horses. It was a nice night so he headed for the bleachers after arriving. A nod was given to the one
there who ... looked familiar.


Patrick was in the tower as the crew finished checking the track before the first Position race was to begin. "Tonight we have Position Races to run, this late I hope to get three in. The rest tomorrow, night or day, if possible." But they would be as soon as possible so that all would be settled by the time the regular races were held. "Please make yourself comfortable, there is food and drink at the stands. Tonight we have Starting at Gate One on down, Lavender, Beowulf, Solid Rock, Charlie's Angel, Irish Outlaw, Amber Dancer, Joker's Wild and Kestrel. These eight horses are new and will be running seven races with time in between over the next day or so." Waiting for the flagman before calling out, "and they're off!"


The man had something about him familiar as well that he picked up on, being there were not as many here for these races he indicated a spot near where he sat, "Adrian Frasier, do I know you?" Feeling like he should though he had not been out and about other than the port in some time. Tonight was the start of some changes to come.


"We have bolting from the starting gates, Lavender and Amber Dancer nose to nose. Beowulf a head behind in this good start for most of them."


Well, that explained a lot and he grinned. "Not by sight but perhaps by name and blood it seems. David Frasier." He offered his hand as he sat. "Arrived not so long ago and it seems I'm staying." He couldn't help wondering how many more cousins would be popping out of the woodwork.


"Beowulf has pulled to the lead with Lavender close behind, Solid Rock and Amber Dancer striving for third position presently. It would seem Kestrel is having some trouble near the gates."


"David Frasier," grin came infectiously as he lean to grip his hand in a solid shake and released. "I've heard but I'm one of the more reclusive Frasiers except if you're around the port area." Then one might catch sight of him. He was keeping an eye on the race. "Though this is only a position race, it's the first one I've been to." Which was hard to admit but better late than never.


"Lavender has pulled back into the lead with Beowulf falling back to second place. Solid Rock vying for third as they pass the middle mark."


"Aye. They're quite exciting to watch. And a good way to pass the evening." He grinned as he leaned forward slightly to watch the horses. "Though I'm still not all that good at betting."


"Beowulf has passed Lavender out again, as she falls back to second place. Amber Dancer pulling up to third exchanging places with Solid Rock again. Kestrel seems to have gotten over whatever failed him as they head for the finish line. The final results are in, Beowulf takes the Win. Amber Dancer to Place and Lavender to Show." Why it was hard to really predict who would win when one did so well then fell behind the second half of the race.


"I've not tried but I think I will in the least to support the family endeavor. Do you have a horse? I noticed a few of the cousins do including your brother."


"In the second race, starting at Gate One on down we have: Irish Outlaw, Charlie's Angel, Beowulf, Lavender, Kestrel, Joker's Wild, Solid Rock and Amber Dancer." Waiting the few minutes as the track was cleared and the flag down, "and they're off.. A slower start this time except for Kestrel who had difficulties in the first race. Irish Outlaw, Beowulf and Solid Rock with a lot of track to cover yet. Kestrel is keeping the lead with Beowulf coming up close, Irish Outlaw and Charlie's Angle nose to nose. Beowulf has passed Kestrel out who is determined not to drop back too far. Charlie's Angel a head behind Kestrel. Charlie's Angel has now moved into first position with Beowulf close behind. Irish Outlaw and Joker's Wild nose to nose as the head for the finish line. There could easily be an upset this race. As predicted there was an upset in this race with Joker's Wild coming up from third position to take the Win. Irish Outlaw to Place and Charlie's Angel to Show."

"In our third and final race tonight, we have starting at Gate one on down: Joker's Wild, Solid Rock, Amber Dancer Irish Outlaw, Charlie's Angel, Beowulf, Kestrel and Lavender." Which the while he was announcing he was keeping an eye on the flagman, as the flag went down, "and they're off!"


He was making notes of names, and who he wanted to bet on. "Have you been sailing a lot then, Adrian?" Being he stated he was rarely seen. David didn't take his eyes from the horses as he watched.


"We have Amber Dancer and Charlie's Angel bolting to the lead nose to nose at the start of this race. Solid Rock and Kestrel a short distance behind the leading horses."


"Sailing? Only a small amount for my duties and my men are getting restless. I need more than a few hours carting cargo down the coast to Ballicastle and back." His focus on the racers as well though could easily talk and watch. "How about yourself, settling in?" Recalling something he heard. "New Barrister I believe, congratulations."


"Amber Dancer has taken the lead with Kestrel in second position. Solid Rock taking third position as they pass the halfway mark. Amber Dancer is keeping the lead with Solid Rock coming up from behind. Irish Outlaw and Lavender fighting it out for third position."


"This looks like it's going to be another close race." The horses were fairly close together in those positions races as he stood from his seat to see better.


"Aye it is. And aye, I'm the same." He chuckled. "And already busier than, what's the saying, a bee collecting honey? It's surprising." He gave a slight shake of his head. "It's amazing to me how the horses seem to enjoy racing. Or maybe it's just the sheer joy of running."


"Amber is keeping the lead with Solid Rock still in second position, Kestrel and Lavender vying for third position as they head for the finish line."


"Better busy than not, those types of days find me finding trouble." Which he had to chuckle, something in their blood as he kept an eye on those horses as they headed for the finish. "This is close.."


"Not as much an upset as could have been possible as Amber Dancer kept the lead taking the Win. Solid Rock to Place and Irish Outlaw to Show."


He let out a low whistle. "There's some good runners in there."


It was time to get back, get some sleep as being he was still standing he turned to salute  Patrick up in the tower then address David. "I'm glad to finally meet you. Maybe I'll see you at the races next week?" If he could make it he would be here. "Take care, good to hear your business is keeping you busy. If you need anything, you can find me down at the port. Westside."


Patrick gave a wave back as he took the moment from his notes, filling in the stats so far. Wave included David.


"You might. Depends on my workload." He stood as well, stretching some. "I've an office in the commons too, so if you're there, come in and say hello. Take care, Adrian." He lifted his hand in a wave to Patrick. He'd see him back at the manor since he was staying there tonight.


"All right if I bring a bottle of the Pure?" Grinning as he started down the steps. "If you've a mind for a card game or the like, let me know." He might be a Barrister but that didn't mean he couldn't have any fun. That's where he was headed and once he realized they were as well, he slow down in letting them catch up. He had his horse to ride.


Wasn't long before Patrick was down from the Tower, papers in a satchel tucked under his arm. "Heading for the manor?" One of his men bringing around his stallion as they would see to closing up the tracks for the night. Part of their job.


"I will. Been to the casino a few times." He grinned at Patrick as he joined them. He'd be riding back also since he had ridden on a borrowed horse. He still needed to talk to Rory McDonough.


The three headed up together as it turned out. The more the merrier!

 

Second Night....

 

There had been a threat of rain which would have them holding off on the races but the clouds never burst forth in any deluge when bets were made they would. Instead sunlight filtered through casting sheets of light to bust forth instead. A rainbow cast over hills and mountains that seemed to end up at Falkirk Manor, as if there was a pot of gold there. Patrick watched from the tower, the sheets needed for the last for races in hand. He was frozen to the spot, mesmerized by the uplifting sight. One of a good omen if one were superstitious at all. The crew was back out to see to the gates as the jockeys mounted to lead the race horses in position as they were called out. Patrick taking up the megaphone but eyes still cast to the sky. "This afternoon we will continue the races, four left for positioning these new horses. Starting at  Gate One on down, we have: Beowulf, Lavender, Irish Outlaw, Kestrel, Solid Rock, Charlie's Angel, Amber Dancer and Joker's Wild." Watching the flagman as he spoke and when the flag went down, "and they're off!"


Adrian made his way back to the races as things were running smoothly down at the port. There was something itching inside him of late that usually let him to getting into a few fights to get it out of his system. Today, curbing the feeling, he headed here instead to watch the horses race. Taking the same seat approximately on the bleachers as he settled in. A bottle of potcheen his companion presently.


"Beowulf bolted from the gates to take a strong lead with lavender and Joker's Wild on his heels." To keep things moving along usually only the top three were mentioned though some were close behind.


David had been at the office briefly in the morning. He rode back to the racetrack after speaking to Concessa. After tying off his horse, and pausing to watch the rainbow, he headed up into the bleachers to join Adrian.


He waved in David's direction in a way to come join him soon as he was spotted coming in. The race already started so didn't say much, instead offering him the bottle of potcheen for a taste.


"Lavender has pulled ahead of Beowulf who has dropped to second position with Joker's Wild taking a stronger claim on third. Lavender is determined to keep her lead with Kestrel coming up from behind to take second position, Beowulf falling back to third but certainly these two are close."


He was watching the race as he came up beside Adrian and nearly missed a step. Grinning sheepishly, he accepted the bottle from Adrian and took a swig before handing it back.


"Lavender is way out ahead at this point as Beowulf has passed out Kestrel now in third place. Still very close and Joker's Wild not out of this race yet as they head for the finish line."


"New boots?" Grinning wide but distracted as the horses went for the finish line. Taking the bottle back as he took a drink then set it between them.


"Aye, and I think they're a tad too big." He laughed as he leaned forward slightly to watch, resting his elbows on his knees.


"Lavender has taken the Win but Joker's Wild has come up from behind to Place leaving Beowulf to Show." So there had been an upset after all. Such made the races more exciting. The men were out to clean up the tracks and make sure all was as it should be as the horses were led off.


"Another well run race. I have to say I'm very impressed." Leaning back again, he looked at Adrian. "It's going to be hard to pick this time." Except for his cousins' horses. He always picked those.


"Concessa Quinn is the one working for you?" Just to be certain as he pointed to the winning horse, "that's hers, Lavender."


"For our next Position race, we have starting at Gate One on down: Kestrel, Joker's Wild, Charlie's Angel, Beowulf, Amber Dancer, Solid Rock, Lavender and Irish Outlaw," watching the flagman as he spoke before adding, "and they're off," as the flag went down and the gates lifted releasing the racers.


"Aye, she is. She told me that she was running her. I'll have to make sure I tell her how well she's doing." He had told her this morning about the races last night. Or so he thought.


"We have Charlie's Angel bolting to the lead with Irish Outlaw right behind. Lavender and Kestrel leading the others. Charlie's Angel is keeping her lead, making more distance from Lavender who has pulled up to second position, Beowulf in third. Charlie's lead wasn't quite enough as Lavender manages to pass her out by a nose. Kestrel now coming up from behind vying for third position. It seems it's going to be a fight between Charlie's Angel and Lavender as Charlie's Angle has taken the lead by a head. Solid Rock has come up from behind to pass Kestrel out for third position as they head for the finish line."


He was to his feet as they headed for the finish line. "This one is close too," seemed positions were being exchanged back and forth leaving one wonder.


"Aye, it is." He was watching Lavender again. Determined little filly!


"The final results are in by the judges," as there were three at the finish line for those close calls. "Charlie's Angel has taken the win, with Solid Rock coming up from behind to Place, Lavender to Show."


He let out a whoop for Lavender then chuckled. "I'm going to be betting on her so I hope that doesn't jinx her."


He took his seat again as there would be a short intermission. "I think she is one I'll be betting on and Charlie's Angel. That one is owned by Kenneth Bryne, which for the name, the lass he is with is Charlie. Have you met her yet?" Curious as certainly he had. Charlie wasn't one you forgot after meeting her.


When he sat, he took a drink from the bottle, then shook his head. Eyes still watered a bit from the potent brew. "I haven't as of yet, but have heard some tales of those two."


"Which ones did you hear?" Taking the bottle after he was done to kick back a good burning mouthful.


There would be time between as Patrick marked in the numbers for each of the horses position in the races. The crewmen were out to rake the track and make sure all was in perfect order before running the horses again to bring them up in the circuit. Setting the papers aside and taking up the megaphone again as the men were off the tracks and eye was kept on the flagman as he announced the lineup, "starting at Gate One on down, we have: Charlie's Angel, Amber Dancer, Joker's Wild, Solid Rock, Lavender, Kestrel, Irish Outlaw and Beowulf." The flag going down near as he spoke the last as he quickly added as the gates opened up.. "and they're off!"


"Well, the hayloft one. And one about a field." He scratched at his chin while he watched the race, thinking.


"There was something about an old ship dragged to the lake off in a cove as well. Indian lads surrounded her and the fun kept going."


"We have Amber Dancer barely taking the lead with Kestrel a nose behind, Charlie's Angel and Beowulf nose to nose in third position. Irish Outlaw has taken the lead with Kestrel right behind. Amber Dancer moving up to third position. Amber Dancer has come up from behind to take the lead, with Irish Outlaw falling back to second. Beowulf then Kestrel ahead of the others."


"Haven't heard that one yet." He laughed and shook his head. "Sounds like those too get into quite a bit of mischief!."


"Amber Dancer is keeping the lead with Beowulf moving up to second position., Irish Outlaw falling back to third as they head for the finish line. The results are in. Amber Dancer has taken the Win with Beowulf to Place and Kestrel to Show. Marking the papers with the positions before setting them aside. "There will be a short intermission before the last race." Time for him to have a drink as they would let the horse rest a few.


"Aye, that they do but so do others like the McAndrews men," which was sort of the pot calling the kettle black. Frasiers got into enough except the eldest who spent his time getting the others out of spots. "Have you met many of the citizens yet? Have you met Concessa's brothers? They're in now and already making a name for themselves." Three he should hang out with for the fighting they got into.


"I've mostly met those of our family. Few others.  Heard some on the Quinn brothers, some on the McAndrews." He laughed softly. "Concessa is right proud of them."


"I'm right proud of them!" Which had him laughing as he took another drink and passed the bottle to David. The two of them were going to get lit by the time the races were done.


Yes they were. There'd be no work done tonight!


Soon they would hear the preliminary noises of the megaphone before Patrick's voice rang loud and clear over the whole of the race tracks. "For our final Position Race, we have starting at Gate One on down: Amber Dancer, Kestrel, Lavender, Joker's Wild, Beowulf, Irish Outlaw, Charlie's Angel and Solid Rock." Watching the flagman as usual as the flag went down and the adding, "and they're off," as the clatter of gates suddenly opening sounded. "We have Kestrel bolting to take the lead from the gates, Irish Outlaw a nose behind with Solid Rock barely in third position. So far Kestrel is keeping the lead with Irish Outlaw keeping second position and Beowulf moving up from behind into third. We have an upset here as Irish Outlaw has taken the lead with Beowulf a nose behind leaving Kestrel falling back to third position."

"Irish Outlaw is keeping that lead gained with Kestrel moving up to second, Beowulf dropping back to third as they head for the finish line." There could still be an upset at least for Show. And there was an upset somewhat, "Irish Outlaw takes the Win, Joker's wild who came up from behind at the last stretch to Place and Kestrel to Show." Marking in the last of the statistics before slipping the papers in the satchel he would take back to the manor with him and work on them there. He was out of the Tower and down to  meet up with his cousins. "Care to join me?" The crew he had hired would see to the tracks and closing up when all was done. There were guards hired that patrolled the area in rotating rounds.


"Aye, that might be a good idea." Being he and Adrian had been enjoying the pure while they watched. He could still ride however.


He was up into a stretch. He had stayed at the manor over night so easier to be here this day to see the completion of the Position races. "I think a good meal is in order then I will head to the port if anyone wants to join me, find a card game or such.." the such coming with a grin.


"Might be a good change of scenery for myself." What did his son say about stuffy? Kid learns to talk and now he had sass. Heading out with them both as they would ride the distance being they had horses to ride.


"May just do that as well, Adrian." He grinned as he started down from the bleachers. And this time, in spite of imbibing, he didn't trip.
 
-e-

Date: 06-24-09
Poster: Patrick Frasier
Post # 20

Falkirk Downs June Races
 

Patrick was in the tower getting the papers ready for the races to begin. They were a little behind schedule for an earlier shower and making sure the tracks were not slick and endanger any of the racers. The air had a sweet smell to it as often after a summer rain. Foliage was thick and green as well the grass this year, moreso than usual. Torches would not need to be lit until much later as the days were longer. The gates were open at the normal time for anyone to come as he announced. "We shall begin the races shortly. For your comfort the bleachers have been wiped down, umbrellas to be found beneath in case it should rain again. The food stands are open for anyone wanting a bite to eat or something to drink.  Please make yourselves comfortable, I apologize for the slight delay."


Pale pink and yellow were the colors she wore.  And she sat atop the white mare, Luna, as the horse moved towards the racetrack.  There, Nora dismounted and handed the braided reins off for the horse to be taken care of.  She heard the announcement and smiled to herself, pleased.  Her hair was mostly down, though the sides were held back by a pearly looking clasp, the rest of the pale blonde mess in loose, large curls and waves.  She eased into the stands, picked out a spot and simply sat.  Her hands brushed along her lap to smooth any wrinkles out of her dress.


Lizabet had been at the tracks earlier with her brother assisting him as the vet in checking the horses out before they ran tonight. Once Patrick made the announcement, she headed for the bleachers with a growing smile. For the work, she was in loose fitting riding pants and vest over a frilly shirt. Hair was pulled up and away from her face with tendrils loose after the time spent working. Leather boots with only small heels were worn, suitable for the level grounds she was walking upon. She gave a wave to Nora as she approached the benches coming up to where she was seated to take one as well. "Good evening and a grand night for a race."


"Good evening!  It is a wonderful night for a race, yes."  Cheery mood for the blondie.  She was still working on that shyness of hers, too.  Though she did smile, widely up to Lizabet before her attention bounded down to the track.  "I only hope that it doesn't rain."  Her poor hair, if so.


The flagman gave the signal that the tracks were ready for the first race, the jockeys already leading them out to the gates. "For our first race tonight, starting at Gate One  on down, we have Altair, Red Knight, Pretty Milkmaid, Ash and Stone, Rag Doll, Cottage Rose, Royal Pride, Trading Chances, Lavender and Gold Dust." Watching the flag as he announced and seeing it go down as the gates opened up, "and they're off!"


Conor heard the announcement for the beginning of the races and he hurried his pace.  He climbed to take a seat, nodding to the others there and turned quick as he sat to look at the horses that broke from the gates.


We have one of our newest racers taking the lead, Cottage Rose with Pretty Milkmaid and Lavender right behind."


Lavender was the horse he placed his money on, he leaned forward, forearms on knees.


Nora offered a polite dip of her head to Conor in a silent greeting.  Dimples curved into her cheeks from the smile, and her gaze flicked away from him to watch the horses.


"Cottage Rose has fallen back with Lavender coming up to take the lead, Rag Doll and Ash close behind."


Lazare paused at the fence to watch as the first race took off, walking along the separation of horse and man with his eyes on the race until he arrived at the seating.  He glanced up, saw the faces there, and smiled, lifting  his hand in greeting to one lady in particular he recognized.  He made his way near her.  "May I claim a seat  next to you, Miss Liz-bet?" Even as he asked, he turned to look back out to the race.


"If it does, then we shall get wet but at least it will be a warm wet." Tossing of a wink with her smile blooming. Up went her hand as she waved to Lazare." Lowered before he reached them. "Of course, I am still working on a suitable bet for later on. I still think I need the lessons in self defense so I am never taken advantage of. This is Nora," making the introduction. "Nora, this is Sir Lazare of the King's men."


She leaned forward a little, turning her attention over to Lizabet and Lazare.  Another smile bloomed, adding another curve of dimples into her cheeks.  "Hello.  I think we have met before, but it has been some time.."  Since she'd last seen him anyway.


He nodded to Nora in greeting, then looked to the other man.  He'd save any further introductions until after the race.  "A pleasure to see you again Nora.  Have you placed bets?" Forgive him, he had to look to see how it was going.


Segan was not long after his brother, though he wasn't sure were Eion was this night. He had awaken with the worse hangover he ever had in his life and he had some pretty wicked ones over the years. Took him near all day to look alive again, he was determined to get to the races tonight to see his horse he'd not ever seen race yet. Didn't know he had one until they got to these lands. Luckily Grams had a few cure alls for his hangover, after boxing his ears but it was impossible to hide this one when he walked into a few walls getting to the kitchen table to break fast at three in the afternoon. So here he was riding in and dismounting where other horses were tethered.


"Have I placed bets? Oh yes."  Nodding gently, she reached up to tuck a strand of pale blonde behind an ear.  She straightened, too, and turned her focus back on the race.


"Lavender is keeping her lead with Royal Prince coming up from behind to take second place, Ash and Stone next as they are still changing spots."


Conor was muttering under his breath..."Come on  Lavender, come on..."


"Trading Chances has moved to the front with Royal Pride taking second and Lavender dropping back to third as they head for the finish line."


"Hello," greeting Conor with one of her broad smiles. "You're welcome to come join us. I'm Lizabet, Nora and Lazare," if he hadn't met any of the others. She waved to the other one by the horses if he wanted to join them as well. The more the merrier.

 

Seeing the wave and the fact his brother was over there, he headed for the bleachers in time to hear the introductions. "I'm Segan, pleased to meet you all." Taking a seat as he waited for the announcement of the winners.


Nora heard the introductions, and flashed the men a smile while lifting a hand to wiggle fingers at them. "Nice to meet you."


"The judges decisions are in,  Lavender to Win, Ash and Stone to Place and Rag Doll to Show."


David was late. Not terribly late, but he was certain he had missed the first race. He tied his horse and headed toward the stands. At least he heard the winners, and grinned. Concessa should be pleased that her horse had won.


That one didn't go well for Lazare but his interest was mostly in the very last race, when there was a meal to be had.


Waiting on the crew to clear the tracks while the jockeys of the next race were getting ready at the gates. "For our second race we have starting at Gate One on down: Court Jester, Blue Lightning, Legacy and Lace, Justified Silver, Irish Outlaw, Just Dandy, Gypsy Prince, Brandy and Rum, Silent Thunder and Amber Dancer." Watching the flagman the while as the flag went down and the gates opening, "and they're off! Irish Outlaw takes the lead with Court Jester closest behind, Legacy, Brandy and Justified all nose to nose."


She was quiet tonight. Mostly because she was so focused on the race. She'd not been to one in a while. A long while. Her blue-green eyes faintly narrowed in thought, lips pursing.


Eion had been leaning on the fence, after looking over the horses again. He grinned when he heard Concessa's horse had done well. Now would Gemma's? Deciding to join his brothers, he headed into the stands.


"Irish is keeping the lead with Brandy moving up to second place, Justified and Court Jester nose to nose in third."


Conor scooted a bit to make room for Eion, although he definitely didn't need to.


He gave a belated hoot and holler for Lavender, could his brothers tell he'd not fully recuperated from last night?


"Justified has moved to take the lead with Irish a nose behind, Brandy in third position but anything could change in this race."


He nodded at Conor, giving him a half smile in thanks then glanced at Segan. That almost had the smile growing. Almost Wait a minute. "Come on Irish! Get moving!"


"Evening everyone." He greeted them all cordially then sat.


"Irish has pulled ahead of Justified with Justified falling back to third, Brandy moving up to second as they head for the finish line."


She grinned at the excitement around her, before tipping a fleeting glance over those settled close by. Cheeky, that grin of hers. She twitched her nose playfully then turned back to watch the current race.


"Justified Silver has taken the Win. Amber Dancer coming up from behind to Place and Irish Outlaw as well coming up from behind to Show."


"Evening."  He gave David a cordial nod.


Lazare was chuckling hearing the man near...there was no wonder who he had bet on.


"Gah..what happened." Conor slapped his palm to his forehead, sitting back with a grunt.


"For our third race, starting at Gate One on down, we have: Forest Nymph, Jack, Morgan, Nutmeg, Fandango, Charlie's Angel, Renegade Star, Cream and Sugar, Wrong Turn and Shaya."  Watching the flag as it went down and gates were thrown open, "and they're off!"


Conor nudged Eion with this one.


"We have Renegade Star and Charlie's Angel nose to nose for the lead, Shaya and Cream nose to nose for second."


He grinned and leaned forward, elbows resting on his knees. Where was Fandango?!


"Renegade has pulled ahead, with Shaya coming up from behind to take second spot, Morgan moving into third."


These must be Concessa three brothers. He'd introduce himself as Concessa's employer after the races.


"Shaya has moved into first position with Renegade close behind. Charlie's Angel moving into third spot. Wrong Turn has come up from behind with Shaya to fall back into second place, Renegade a nose behind her and Charlie's Angel just behind Renegade. The others are not all that far behind in that there could be upsets in this race as they head for the finish line."


Which had Conor to his feet.


"And here we have it! Renegade Star takes the Win,  Shaya to Place, and Charlie's Angel to Show." Taking the moment to shuffle papers as the crew took care of the tracks and the jockeys got their horses in position for the next race as the previous moved off the tracks. "For our Fourth Race, starting at Gate One on down, we have: Dapper Dan, Lace Stockings, Solid Rock, Spartan, Roxanne, Smoky Trails, Seanchai, Paddy's Lad, Ala' Al Din and Phantom Flame." Which in a few short seconds, "and they're off!"


Conor just stood there, looking out over the field to the horses as they were led away. Someone may have done well at the races tonight, but he sure as the devil had not. He shook his head, lowering back to his seat.

 

He wasn't sure how he was doing but his horse was up, so he watched closely.


"We have Dapper Dan and Solid Rock nose to nose for the lead, Ala' al din in third. Solid Rock has pulled ahead with Dapper close behind, Paddy's lad in third with Lace Stockings and Smoky Trails very close."


"I'm thinking we should have Herself talk to these beasties." Herself meaning Gran!


"No kidding." Conor muttered.


Lazare was enjoying the reaction of those Quinn men as much as the races.


"Solid Rock is keeping the lead with Lace Stockings in second spot, Dapper Dan and Smoky Trails nose to nose for third as they head for the finish line."


Segan must be sleeping!


He's still in Fae Hangover mode.


"We have Solid Rock to take the Win, Lace Stockings to Place and Paddy's Lad to Show."


He was sleeping, probably the best for him but he seemed to stir as the announcement of the winners were made.


She was as well, and seemed to be doing fairly descent. "So, have you come up with what you want if you win in the Hometown race?" May as well start the bartering as she spoke to Lazare.


"I liked the winnings from the last time." Lazare smiled.


"For our Fifth Race, from Gate One on down, we have: Beowulf, Dusky Princess, Song of Eire, Peppermint, Harvest Gold, Casey, Magic Dust, Kestrel, Shooting Star and Fairuzhd." Which were barely announced when the flag went down and the gates open, "and they're off! Dusky Princess and Beowulf lead the pack out of the gates with Kestrel not far behind."


Good lord! Conor came to his feet when his horse was left behind by the others bolting forward. "Come on, blast it!"

 
Lazare rearranged his seating position to look to Lizabet fully. "Unless...you have something else in mind."


"Magic Dust has moved up to take the lead, Fairuzhd and Beowulf nose to nose in second place, Kestrel in third."


He grinned fully as Conor stood. And still Segan snored. That Fae magic was some potent stuff!


"Magic Dust is keeping the lead, with Peppermint to move in second place, Dusky Princess and Kestrel next."


Conor growled, dropping back to his seat with a few choice words that were better muttered under his breath and indistinguishable.

 

"This is becoming close race amongst a few. Peppermint has taken the lead by a nose. Magic Dust dropping to second with Dusky Princess, Kestrel and Fairuzhd not far behind. Peppermint has taken the Win, Fairuzhd to Place and Kestrel to Show in the final outcome. For our final race tonight, starting at Gate One on down, we have Hunting Demons, Joker's Wild, Drop the Act, RW Blackbird, White Satin, Golden Lady, Bayda Farasha, Windchaser, Rip Roaring and Artemisia."  The tracks cleared and checked as the flag went down, "and they're off!"

 

-c-

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