Page:Black Beauty (1877).djvu/111

This page has been validated.
107
A STRIKE FOR LIBERTY.

mischief she might have done, had not York promptly sat himself down flat on her head, to prevent her struggling, at the same time calling out, "Unbuckle the black horse! run for the winch and unscrew the carriage pole; cut the trace here—somebody, if you can't unhitch it." One of the footmen ran for the winch, and another brought a knife from the house. The groom soon set me free from Ginger and the carriage, and led me to my box. He just turned me in as I was, and ran back to York. I was much excited by what had happened, and if I had ever been used to kick or rear, I am sure I should have done it then; but I never had, and there I stood angry, sore in my leg, my head still strained up to the terret on the saddle, and no power to get it down. I was very miserable, and felt much inclined to kick the first person who came near me.

Before long, however, Ginger was led in by two grooms, a good deal knocked about and bruised. York came with her and gave his orders, and then came to look at me. In a moment he let down my head.

"Confound these bearing reins!" he said to himself; "I thought we should have some mischief soon—master will be sorely vexed; but there—if a woman's husband can't rule her, of course a servant can't; so I wash my hands of it, and if she can't get to the Duchess' garden party, I can't help it." York did not say this before the men; he always spoke respectfully when they were by. Now, he felt me all over, and soon found the place above my hock where I had been kicked. It was swelled and painful; he