. He had been riding Daisy, his obstinate mare who refused the second fence every time. This time she had tried to clear it, but caught her hoof on the edge and went barreling into the ground with Phillip under her. Antonia had heard the noise from the stable- Daisy’s feral scream of pain and panic, and Phillip’s weak yell before his lungs collapsed.
Antonia wasn’t riding Bruno anymore. She was merely a passenger. Instead of levering her body out of the saddle and crouching flat along Bruno’s back, she felt the gelding jump as she was still in cantering position. As horse and girl launched into the air, Antonia was reliving the paramedics holding her back, of the ambulance driving away, of her mother driving her home and then to the competition that morning as if nothing had happened. The force of the jump hurled her into the back of the saddle and her loose hands still wrapped in the reins hard yanked on Bruno’s mouth. He landed awkwardly, whinnying in pain, and reared.