My boots squelched and squeaked as I slopped through the mud. I lifted my feet with care, attempting to stay on the highest ground. I stomped the excess mud off my boots and entered the tack room. The tissue box sat on top of the grain trunk, so I lifted it to put it back.
Inside lay a sky-blue egg.
My mind flashed back to the Vet saying, “If you haven’t had eggs from your chicken, it’s not a pullet.” My Father-In-Law saying “That ain’t no chicken. That’s a rooster.” The girls at camp stating, “Her vent hole is clean, and she’s definitely a girl.”
Lucas lays eggs–we’ve just never found one before now.
I mentally pushed this new information aside. The horses nickered and whinnied from all around and inside the barn, shaking me from my reverie. I added hot water to each grain bucket, creating bran mashes.
I gave Misty and Zeus hay, acknowledging their nickers and hugging them as I entered their stalls. I saved Melody, my horse, for last. I hefted an armload of hay, prepared to throw it in her hay net.
I dropped the hay.
Tears coated the right side of Melody’s face. Her swollen eyelid remained shut. Red membrane ballooned from under the lashes, and she backed away from me as if in fear.
I felt moisture gathering in my own eyes for my wonderful, sweet horse’s pain.
Melody’s been through this before. She scratched her cornea in 2011, but needed a Vet to diagnose it and provide medication.
I’d never met Dr. Tavernier before, but I called her when Melody scratched her eye that first time. Our first meeting began a professional union, one I’m proud to be part of.
Luckily, I saved the medication from that first meeting. I applied the ointment, and within a few minutes the swelling diminished. She opened her eye, and I saw the exact place where the top layer of her cornea scraped off.
I strode into the tack room to return the ointment, and once again spotted Lucas–no; Lucy’s, egg. I lifted the precious egg in one hand and the vitally important ointment in the other.
I sighed and smiled, shaking my head.