Cloud, the white stallion, watched over his herd with alert eyes. As their leader he had to take care of them and protect them. His eyes slid over the mares and their frisky foals by their sides. Some day, one of these colts would rise above him and rule the herd.
Nevada, his wife and the lead mare, came over to him. They touched noses and whickered softly to each other. Still standing together, they watched the desert that was their home. Cloud and his mares grazed on the sparse grass covering the ground.
Even though the day was blazingly hot, the horse were used to it and their bodies had adapted well. A small fight between two mares had broken out over a patch of sweet and fresh grass. Nevada quickly galloped over and broke up the fight. To punish the mares for fighting, she herself ate the grass.
Snorting softly, Cloud and Nevada shared their thoughts about the day.
Then Cloud heard a low growl behind him! There, right behind him was a cougar! Thin and half-crazed from hunger, it had come down from it’s mountain home in search of food. Cloud was not frightened, just angry. He had several foals and mares to protect, and this cougar was threatening them. In a rage, he struck out with his hooves and hit the cougar. Still snarling, the cougar slunk away. Cloud watched it until it was out of sight. Cloud breathed a sigh of relief. Even though the cougar posed no real threat, it still wore on his nerves.
He lay down for a well-earned rest. Awaking early the next morning, he felt ready for anything. His mind thought back to the cougar fight of yesterday, and decided to forget about it.
Then Nevada screamed a warning!!!! Three wolves had crept in and killed many of the herd’s foals! As Cloud charged at them, they quickly ran away.
Cloud and his herd mourned the death of the foals and then pushed on. They were determined to have revenge. As the herd rested, Cloud smelled something. His head whipped around. The wolves!!!! Cloud quickly took action. He herded his mares into a tight ball. Then he and Nevada struck out at the wolves with their sharp hooves. The wolves flinched but did not run. Then Cloud’s anger overtook prudence. He charged towards the wolves and lashed out at them with teeth and hooves. He could smell their breath but he kept going. Finally every single wolf was dead.
Cloud lifted his head and neighed in triumph. He had overcome the wolves at last. Nevada came up and they touched noses. It was a good day!