Horse Dreams

Horse Dreams by Dandi Daley Mackall Read Free Book Online Page B

Book: Horse Dreams by Dandi Daley Mackall Read Free Book Online
Authors: Dandi Daley Mackall
Tags: JUVENILE FICTION / Religious / Christian
never came out. At least that’s what Colt’s big sister, Sierra, told us.
    We follow Principal Fishpaw single file. He towers over all of us, except Mom. I reach back and take hold of Dad’s hand. But it’s too sweaty, so I let go again. I don’t think Dad notices.
    My teacher greets us and shakes Mom’s and Dad’s hands. I catch her wiping her hand on her blue-and-white sweatpants after she shakes Dad’s hand.
    â€œThank you so much for coming.” Miss Hernandez points to the three small chairs across the desk from the principal’s king-sized chair. “Please take a seat.” She leans against the edge of the desk, and my principal takes his throne.
    As usual, Principal Fishpaw is wearing a suit, socks, and sandals. Sometimes in the winter he wears shoes with no socks. It’s a mystery. He’s about twice the size of my dad. His head makes me think of our lawn—with tufts of grass in odd places.
    Principal Fishpaw fixes his gaze on my dad. “Leonard, it’s good to see you here again.”
    Leonard? Nobody calls Dad Leonard. He’s just Lenny or Dad.
    Dad doesn’t correct the principal. “Thank you, sir,” he says.
    â€œBrings back memories, doesn’t it?” my principal asks. “You and me sitting across this very desk after I called you to the principal’s office?”
    Sweat forms in tiny balls across Dad’s forehead. “Well, that was a long time ago—”
    â€œNot so long ago!” Principal Fishpaw bellows, as if my dad is trying to pick a fight with him.
    Dad tries to grin, but he looks like he has a stomachache. “Yes. Well, I-I-I guess we should have called off this meeting.”
    â€œCalled off the meeting?” Principal Fishpaw roars. “Why on earth would I do such a thing?”
    Dad grips the seat of his chair as if Principal Fishpaw’s roar might blow him out of the office. “I mean . . . you know . . . since Ellie did see the horse and whatnot?”
    Miss Hernandez smiles at me. “I owe you an apology, Ellie. When you shouted in class that you saw a horse, I admit I thought it was your imagination talking.”
    â€œWait a minute.” Principal Fishpaw glares at my dad. “What do you mean, your daughter saw a horse from her classroom? Were you there, Leonard? In that classroom? Have you decided to repeat fourth grade?”
    Dad clears his throat. “Well, no. Of course not. I have a job. A very good job.”
    â€œSo what you’re telling me is that you weren’t there. You didn’t see any horses from the fourth-grade window, did you? You have no way of knowing if Ellie saw that imaginary horse.”
    â€œWell,” Dad stammers, “wh-when you put it like that . . .”
    â€œDwayne!” Mom snaps.
    Dad, Miss Hernandez, and I turn to Mom. But she has locked her glare onto my principal.
    â€œYes, Bev?” Principal Fishpaw answers.
    My mom never had Mr. Fishpaw as a principal because she didn’t grow up here. But she knows everybody in Hamilton. She’s on the school board and president of the Parent-Teacher Organization.
    â€œDwayne Fishpaw—” Mom slaps the desk, and we jump—“it’s high time to use the sense the good Lord gave you, hear? Not only did Ellie see the horse, but I saw this ‘imaginary’ horse with my own two eyes. Now, are you going to quit bullying my husband and apologize to my daughter or not?”
    * * *
    â€œYou were wonderful, Bev!” Dad exclaims for the tenth time as we pile into the car.
    â€œNonsense,” Mom says. “That man would start an argument with a grapefruit.”

11

    Teamwork
    While Dad continues to rave about Mom’s bravery and his great blessing in finding a wife like her, I give Ethan an update in sign.
    We drive through Crazy Larry’s and get ice cream to celebrate. Then we head for the cat farm to

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