• Member Since 18th Feb, 2013
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Attention Horse


This story is a sequel to Team Boat

J.H. Wilkins is a prominent Cleveland businessman in 1850, managing a grocery store. Word reaches him that a sudden fire in Akron has destroyed the mill which usually supplies his flour.

He books passage on the canal boat Sylph, and starts a the long and slow journey south on the Ohio & Erie Canal to set matters straight, and locate a new supplier.

The trip turns out to be more than he bargained for, however, when he catches the eye of the boat's captain... a lady pony!

Authors Notes

Edited by AlwaysDressesInStyle
An entry into Admiral Biscuit's not-a-contest. Thanks for the boost, Admiral!

Chapters (13)
Comments ( 35 )

This is a fabulous story, Blue! The description of the canal system and how it works is so detailed. I can imagine being there, riding along and seeing the sites and sounds of that time. The grocer tells a good story with his letter home. And I think he might have started a bit of a spark with Rosemary!

I really enjoyed the historical aspect and how you tied it so well into a wonderful slice of life tale. Great work!

tied alongside.Passing by a

Need a space between those sentences.


Darn! I knew something would slip through all those editing passes. Good catch.

Nicely done story and historically accurate slow trip up and down the canals

I love this style of prose.

I dedicate this book to my dear sisters, Eloise, Grace, and Lillian, to whom I wrote the initial manuscript upon which it was based, and who found it such an engaging work that they persuaded me, in spite of my initial misgivings, to publish it.

Mark Twain (Samuel Clemmons) was a steamboat pilot & a VERY spendthrift young man. To make extra money, he wrote a (humorous?) article mocking some people he knew.

But, when time came to publish it, "...a difficulty arose. I discovered a hitherto unsuspected streak of modesty in my character. I wasn't modest everywhere but I was modest in places -and one of those places was in claiming credit for that article."


Correct use of a plural possessive by the second paragraph. Be still, my beating heart.

hung with light; lacy curtains

Somebody dotted your comma.

That guy, the Weighmaster.

Guy as in "fellow" is attested only as far back as 1847. This usage makes it just under the guy wire!

... the atmosphere of the cabin was rather less than ideal, owing to the large proportion of gentlemen smoking their pipes, .....

"A pipe is the perfect invention for it gives a wise man something to do with his hands while he thinks and (it gives) a fool something to stick in his mouth."

ICR Who :derpytongue2:

However, pre WW2 it was socially unacceptable for women to publicly smoke and gentlemen were supposed to ask for the ladies permission before smoking in mixed company.


If some larcenous fellow was to secretly fill the boat with hidden weight....

Or, just bribe the Weightmaster. Or, perhaps cheaper, the book's typesetter.


Another collection of small buildings was nestled against the side of the next canal lock. There was a general store, and some houses, and many smiling faces and waving hands jutted out of windows to.... great....us as we locked through.

Typo. Should be "greet".


I noticed that too :raritywink:
Many people get it wrong, don’t they?

Reminds me of the old farmer’s trick at vehicle weigh stations.

When the farmer enters the weigh station fully loaded, he calls his dog out as he himself exits the vehicle for weighing.
Then after unloading, the dog stays in the car while the farmer exits for the final weigh.

Rosemary whipped about, and kicked up her heels. The blow landed squarely on the Irishman’s jaw. He froze, as if struck by lightning, then with a sound like a felled tree collapsed to the ground.

According to Wikipedia, a Shetland pony weighs 400-450bs. This is heavier than almost all pro athletes & animals tend to be stronger than a human of the same weight.



And that's why the guys at Hells Half Acre don't mess with Rosemary anymore! :raritywink:


I used to work at a place called the Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument! That helped...


According to this source, "guy" goes back as far as the 1300s, in the sense of "guide or conductor", in other words a servant. Not sure if that is in fact the case.

It was also in use as far back as the 1830s in BSE to mean "strange or grotesque person", as a derisive. Much of the workforce that built both the Erie and the Ohio Canals were Irish, which is probably where Rosemary would have first heard it used. Rosemary intends to use it as a disrespectful way of referring the "state man" here.

Nicely poetic, this chapter.

Human bully: 0
Earth Pony: 1

However, pre WW2 it was socially unacceptable for women to publicly smoke and gentlemen were supposed to ask for the ladies permission before smoking in mixed company.

Well fortunately the company was not mixed then, as all involved had their own separate accommodations.

11497284 Never talk about a female's weight. (But I had much the same calculus when writing Knight and Dei)

If Knight and Dei break out the saddles, they can each carry a pre-teen child upwards of about eighty pounds or so all day. It seems high for their apparent size because pegasi may look like dainty birds, but even Dei weighs in at over two hundred and mumble pounds of mostly muscle, and Knight is just a hair under three hundred while wearing his armor.

Excellent story. Very entertaining and informational, just the way I love these PoE fics.

I like this. A nice journey through the canal with friendly faces and a small, blooming romance. It's adorable!

¡That sounds like a horrible place!

This is a wonderful story. I wonder whether their culture accepts interspecies-romances.

Added to
Admiral Biscuit's Fleet
"Not A Contest" folder because it is a sequel to a story in that file


Nice little gem of a story. Those two are too perfect, yet the romantic aspect remains subtle and classy.

Great story, and you've captured the feel of the language use of the time very well!

I really enjoyed this. The writing style fit impressively well within the time period you were going for, and the characters were very good.
It was also interesting because I did not know about this canal, so I ended up doing some reading about it when I got curious. Thanks for a great read.

I can't be the only one reading this through shipping goggles.

It's interesting to me that she says Pegasus, and not a pegasus.

A yarn that I imagine Samuel Clements himself would have enjoyed. The only downside for me is that it wasn't longer :twilightsmile:

Oh, that was delightful! Thank the Admiral for the recommendation. Always a pleasure to read about stories on canals, American though this one may be.

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