Be Careful What You Wish For!
Mattie. . . . Maaaatttiiiee…. He sent his thoughts out to her. He needed her to bring the painting out from the dark. He needed to look into her eyes.
Her attention was drawn to the farthest corner of the attic—as though someone had called her name. Crouching on her hands and knees, she crawled under the eaves and spied what looked like an edge of a frame of a painting or photograph. Wedged deeply in the corner under a pile of junk, it remained tantalizingly out of reach of her outstretched fingers. Lying down on her stomach, she wriggled her way into the narrow space. “Ouch!” she yelped as a splinter speared her in her stomach. Rolling over, she pulled out the spike of dry wood, wiping away the drop of blood welling from her skin.
Rolling back onto her stomach, she pressed her toes against the floorboards and pushed herself forward. “Tah dah!” she cried, closing her fingers firmly on the object. Little by little, the picture emerged from its hiding place as she inched her way back to the center of the room.
Sitting up, cobwebs draped over her hair like a bridal veil, she turned the picture over, expecting to see the grim, unsmiling face of some old ancestor. Instead, to her delight, she discovered the image of a black horse standing next to a pond illuminated by the light of a full moon.
The artist had talent. He had captured a look of knowledge and intensity in the black eye of the majestic horse. Mattie could almost feel the gentle breeze that lifted the strands of fine hair off his powerfully muscled neck. He stood proudly, partially hidden in a cluster of trees clothed in green leaves, rosy apples nestling in their branches. Something about the picture looked familiar but she couldn’t figure out what it was. He probably reminds me of one of the horses at the barn, she thought.
He stared back at her, struggling to keep his power in check. This was the first human face he’d gazed at in many decades. Relegated to the dark corner of the uninhabited attic, he’d only seen images of people—past and present—flashing through his mind as he’d reached out, seeking contact with another living creature. A prickling sensation spread through his body as the sun caressed his painted image. . .
THE MAGIC BEGINS . . .
Fourteen-year-old Mattie decides to spend the summer with her beloved grandmother, Granny T, after a humiliating encounter with the snobby, rich girls who vacation in Gull’s Nest. She’s thrilled when she uncovers a primitive painting hidden for centuries in the attic of her grandmother’s home. The painted horse looks exactly like the one she hopes to own someday, even though she doubts this dream will ever come true.
Living with her widowed mother in the quaint seaside village, Mattie and her mom are barely making ends meet. There’s certainly no room in the family budget for a horse! She hangs the painting in a prominent place in her bedroom, and even though she knows it’s childish, she can’t help talking to the painted image, and wishing he were alive. At times, it seems as though he actually can hear and understand her longings.
One moonlit night, Mattie leaves the safety of her bedroom and ventures deep into the surrounding forest where she meets a wild horse who bears an uncanny resemblance to the one in her painting. Mattie and her mystery horse form a bond she instinctively knows she can’t reveal to anyone. The painting seems to take on an even more lifelike quality as the bond between Mattie and the wild horse deepens. Mattie is uneasy as she wonders—and fears—if the two are somehow connected.
Mattie soon realizes that she should have heeded her grandmother’s warnings to be careful what she wishes for; it’s one thing to fantasize that the painted horse were real and quite another to discover he might be!
The author was inspired to write Midnight Magic – Be Careful What You Wish For! by her own magical Morgan, Trinity. Although Midnight Magic is categorized as juvenile fiction, horse lovers of all ages will enjoy this compelling tale about a haunted painting, a majestic Morgan stallion desperately seeking immortality and the horse-obsessed young teen who loves him.