The main castle was surrounded by beautiful, manicured courtyards and there were people scurrying about everywhere.

They held brooms, bridles even loaves of bread. It was a hive of activity in there.

Inanna was hopeful the guard would stay with her and show her the way back once she’d finished as she would surely be lost inside these palace walls forever if she had to find her own way out.

They took so many twists and turns. They went down alleyways, up stairs, down stairs and through tunnels until eventually they made their way to the stables.

The stables were breathtaking. Eamon would have loved it here.

It was a far cry from the modest stables at her father’s home. These were something else all together.

They were bigger than her home. They had proper rooves with gables and each horse had its own little stable. It was out of this world.

The guard introduced Inanna to a lovely older gentleman, Bryan Thomas. He looked after the horses and the stables.

He gave a nudge and a wink and said, “Everyone round ‘ere calls me Tom, love”

He was in a bit of a panic. If he lost a horse while King Silas was away he would be out of a job in a second. Inanna was his last hope. He had tried everything and everyone in the village.

Inanna made her way gently to the mare. She was an old thing but Inanna felt sure she had a few good years left in her yet.

It was a wound that had been left to fester, causing discomfort in the horse and seemed to be spreading quite quickly now.

She was a natural and the horse settled in her presence immediately. She even lay down for her.

Old Tom couldn’t believe his eyes, this mare was a stubborn old lady and had not quietened down for anyone, in fact it was quite the opposite. She reared and snorted and pawed the ground when anyone came near her.

For Inanna she lay still.

The two of them spent some time just being, together. Inanna wanted to get to know her first. She could feel the energy in humans and could also feel it in animals. It was a real gift and one she was grateful for.

After she had spent some time with the horse she went and washed up and mixed some herbs to dress the wound. Once this was done, the horse would be right in no time. The wound itself wasn’t all that bad, it was the horses temperament that needed the most work.

Inanna had extraordinary empathy for all things. It did make things hard at times, but as she matured she learnt to work with this ability quite comfortably.

It was this the horse likely picked up on: her calmness, her knowingness, her empathy. She could read horses as well as she could read humans.

She was very confident the horse would improve dramatically within the next twenty-four hours and promised Old Tom she would be back to check on her as often as she could. She would change the dressing daily for the next week.

As promised she visited the castle daily and by day six the old mare was as good as new. Inanna was desperate to hop on, it had been years since she had ridden and it was something she missed daily. Old Tom thought the two of them should go for a ride, to test her out, see if she was back to her old self.

Inanna thought this was a great idea and didn’t even bother checking with Lilith first as surely she would say no.

The old mare was a little sensitive and touchy, so Inanna decided to ride bare back. They wouldn’t be going far or for very long.

Old Tom was amazed at how easily Inanna made the horse a bridle out of rope. He helped her up, she felt a wave of happiness she hadn’t felt for ages, this old mare would take good care of Inanna, she could feel it.

They rode a short way through the castle then out into the open fields. Inanna was careful not to just take off but did manage a slow trot and a short canter, just to see if she could handle it.

Old Tom marvelled at the way she rode. He hadn’t seen anyone as natural as Inanna, ever.

It was a joy to behold.