“Thank you,” Electra said, smiling at the horse. She knew she’d made the right choice, because she couldn’t imagine leaving any of those little clay animals to deal with what had happened to them alone now that she knew about them, even if she wasn’t sure how she was going to make things work. “Any ideas how I can make them all comfortable?”
The horse thought for a moment. “What’s your shed like?”
“Watertight, but I doubt it’s very warm in there.”
“Right now, Electra, those animals are looking for safety. As long as they have somewhere they feel they can live without having to worry that they might be found or damaged more they’ll be happy with anything. If you want to adapt the shed so that’s it’s a real home for them you can do that at a later date.”
Nodding, Electra looked once more around the workshop. “I guess I just want to give them more than they had before.”
“Giving them shelter is more than they had before. Knowing you might be able to fix them is probably the best news that those animals will have had since they were first damaged. You have no idea what hope you will have given them and I’m glad you did, because I know you can fix them.”
The horse had been to Electra’s workshop a couple of times before, so knew what she was capable of doing. On his first visit she’d fixed his leg, which had been damaged during the firing, and on the second she’d fixed a broken ear. His third visit was for a replacement hoof, on a different leg to the one she’d worked on during his first visit. As with all her visitors it had been impossible not to talk about what his life was like. She was happy to hear that he lived in a house where they didn’t plan on using him for the games, because they could be very damaging, occasionally so badly that she had trouble fixing the damage.
“Did you know about them before Alexis knocked on my window?”
“I’d heard of them, but I wasn’t certain they existed. A couple of the animals made during my firing disappeared because they were believed to be too damaged to be sold. I got lucky. She knew she could make enough money from me do I wasn’t thrown out. When that happened all I could do was hope they found the broken creatures and at least had some form of life.”
Sighing, Electra picked up a blanket that was close to her. “Thankfully Brendan knows to pick up damaged creatures first, partly because they’re cheaper and partly because we both know that no one else will buy them. Once life clay is used it can never be reused, so I hate to think what happens to those poor animals.”
“They get ground into dust.” The horse sounded matter of fact, but Electra knew it was hard for him to say. “Any damaged animals that aren’t purchased normally do get a second chance at auction, but then…” He shook his head. “Maybe you could start working with the auctioneers, too, in order to save them.”
Mirrored from K. A. Jones Writing.