The two continued on the road for a half-mile or so and then entered the forest. Leading their horses, they moved very quietly until they were about 50 yards from the campsite, “Get ready, Chuck, we’ll mount up and go in fast. Getcher gun out ‘case they try to put up a fight.”
Season VI, Chapter 3 Trackdown, Episode 11:
Among the dog-people, Buttons didn’t have the keenest nose, that nose belonged to Daisy, nor did she have the keenest eyesight, those eyes belonged to Ben & Alice, nor the herding skills of PepperCooper, but what she had was by far the best hearing—a thing of canine legend.
Buttons stirred when she heard two horses approach. In a split-second she was wide awake. Thinking quickly she padded over to Northstar and whispered, “We have company, get ready.”
Northstar was already mostly awake and she nickered, “Fight or flight.”
Now, you must understand, GENTLE READER, sentient horses are not ever secured tightly to a rope-line as it is unnecessary; they would never wander away from their chosen humans, the rope-lines and tethers were just for show. All they had to do was back away from the line and the tether would fall to the ground. With Northstar’s warning all six horses and Sancho the mule did just that. They backed up only enough to free themselves and waited.
“Let’s go!” Clem spurred his horse and they began their charge into the camp.
As they began to pass, Northstar and her friends all wheeled towards the riders and reared back; Sancho, of course, began kicking with his powerful hind legs. Clem and Chuck’s horses were so spooked by the sudden, unexpected attack from both sides, they gave their riders one hell of a thrill-ride deep into the forest.
Only Clem & Chuck’s long experience as cowboys kept them from being thrown as they dodged tree-limbs on their twenty-minute high-speed involuntary exploration of the forest.
Shortly after, the humans awoke, made coffee, and while the fire was burning down to hot coals for cooking, they gathered to enjoy the morning air and the brightening sky. They found Buttons already there, “Good morning, Buttons, were you here all night?”
“Yep,” she replied with a slow tail-wag.
“Did anything exciting happen while we slept?” Chris yawned.
Northstar shook her head and nickered quietly, “BUTTONS!”
To be Continued…