Excerpt From Chapter 11: Mysterious Midnight Rider
A few minutes later, she saw it again and the horses in the corral moved restlessly.
Suddenly, a hand was placed over her mouth. She gasped and fought desperately to free herself.
"Stop kicking, will you."
Amy sagged with relief as Clint took his hand off her mouth and whispered grimly, "I hope you haven't scared our visitor away."
"Sorry." Amy murmured. "I didn't know it was you. Why didn't you say something?"
Clint lay down beside her. "I figured you would have screamed or something. What did you see?" he asked.
"Something moved in those trees." Amy told him. "I didn't get a good look but it might have been a horse and rider. How did you know I was out here?"
"I was coming back from getting a drink at the creek when I saw you heading over here so I followed." he explained.
The horses moved again nervously. "Something or someone is certainly out there." Clint said in a low tone "Let's hope it's just a curious critter."
Amy and Clint lay silently side by side for a long time but saw nothing. The horses were still alert and restless but nothing presented itself.
"Looks like you scared them away." Clint got slowly to his feet. "Let's hope they're gone for good. You get back to bed. I'll ride out and see what's going on at the herd. Maybe the boys heard something out there. Good-night."
"Good-night. Be careful." Amy could barely distinguish Clint's face in the darkness.
He nodded and walked swiftly away.
Amy stood looking after him for a moment, then she turned and walked toward the wagon.
She was walking quickly and had almost reached the wagon when suddenly she tripped over something soft and fell to her knees.
"What's the big idea?" someone sputtered.
"Uh-oh!" Amy's shoulders shook with silent mirth. She recognized the voice. In the darkness, she had not seen Anders where he was sleeping on the ground.
His voice was slurred with sleep as he sat up and looked around in bewilderment.
"Sorry." Amy bit her lips to keep from laughing.
"Amy? What are you doing wandering around this time of night? Stop laughing! It isn't funny." Anders shoved his blanket back
"I beg to differ with you." Amy said laughing.
Tye, who had been sleeping nearby, sat up yawning and rubbing his eyes sleepily. "What's going on?" he asked.
"That's what I'd like to know!" Anders stared at Amy. "Why did you wake me up like that?" he demanded.
"Sorry." Amy said again. "I didn't mean to."
"Oh sure!" he said sarcastically.
"I didn't!" Amy protested.
"Well if you didn't, explain what you were doing out here in the middle of the night."
Anders and Tye listened wide eyed as Amy explained.
"Are you sure you weren't dreaming?" Anders asked when she
"I'm sure. If you don't believe me ask Dad in the morning." Amy told him.
"Well, this looks like adventure for you, Amy." Tye grinned.
Amy smiled. "Good. Keeps life interesting. But we'd better get back to bed. We've got a long day tomorrow."
"Yeah, chasing a dream." Anders scoffed.
Amy shrugged. "It wasn't a dream." she told him, then turned and walked away, being very careful not to step on anything else.