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The Brothers Lionheart

Park shouted and swore and urged, but the mare was unwilling. She was afraid. Then he hit her. He had no riding crop but hit her on he head with his fists, and I heard Jonathan draw in a deep breath like a sob, just as he had done that time in the square.

At last Park had his own way; the mare neighed, and terrified, she hurled herself into the river just because that madman wanted her to. It was terrible to see how she struggled when the current caught her.

“She’ll drift right down toward us,” said Jonathan. “Park can do as he likes, but he’ll never get her to that rock.”

But she tried, she really tried. Oh, how she struggled and what terror she felt when she sensed that the river was stronger than she was!

Even Park eventually realized that his life was now at stake, and then he tried to get her back to the bank, but he soon saw that she couldn’t manage. No, because the currents wished otherwise; they wished to take him to Karma Falls, a fate he thoroughly deserved. But the mare, I felt sorry for her. She was quite helpless now, and they came drifting toward us just as Jonathan had said; soon they would pass us and disappear. I could see the terror in Park’s eyes; no doubt he knew what was going to happen.

I turned my head to see where Jonathan was and cried out when I saw him. He hanging from the branch, dangling over the water as far out as he could get, upside down, his legs hooked around the branch, and just as Park came immediately below him, Jonathan grabbed him by the hair and pulled him in so that he could catch hold of a branch.

And then Jonathan called to the mare.

“Come, little mare, come here!”

She had already drifted past, but she made a wild attempt to get back to him. She didn’t have that great lump Park on her back now, but she was almost sinking. Then in some way Jonathan got hold of her reins and began to tug and pull at them. it grew into a tug-of-war between life and death, for the river did not wish to let go; it wanted both the mare and Jonathan.

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