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The idea of getting what you want at any cost may come to you during desperate times. Just imagine there was a button you could push and bingo, you get exactly what you want. Your dreams come true.

Well, Pearl had that innate ability, something she was born with. The power to make things happen with great concentration. She had just finished making her basket when she decided to go down to the river to begin her daily ritual of fetching water for her mother. The path had already been broken into with the many daily walks, back and forth, with the heavy buckets. Her mother had often scolded her for not taking the wheeled little wagon which could hold much more than she could carry. Pearl didn’t care about any of that. She didn’t think her skinny little legs were made for such chores. She’d rather spend her time bathing in the sun on the open field watching the clouds in the sky. The formation the clouds made, told her a story warning her of what is to come and gossiped about many adventures it had seen from below. So every day she laid in the open field watching her daily shows from the clouds in the sky. It was much better than fetching buckets of water.

Today she felt the urge to watch a show before going to the river. She saw the clouds move in such a way that it was telling her to come and follow, for it had a great story to tell. She ran with the bucket swinging in her hand as she followed the moving clouds to the open field, then she dropped her bucket and sat down on the grass, waiting. She saw the story about to begin; with excitement she laid back with her arms spread out beside her. The show had begun.

The story was about a zebra and how it got it’s stripes. A long time ago in the fields of Tush, a black horse named Zune grazed…

“Zune, what are you doing? It’s time to continue our line. You will be set with the one over there.” His mother motioned him to look by pushing her head against his, in the direction of the black beauty.

Zune grinned and chuckled, “he, he, he” to himself. His mother was always optimistic. She was a proud mother, always wishing him the best. But Zune knew that the black beauty was already promised to another. Everyone knew.

“Mother, what are you thinking? I am under her class. Look how finely bred she is. Her coat so clean and shiny. Always the first to eat the best. How can we measure up to her?”

“Don’t you worry about that. It will happen. I promise you. Just be ready tonight. Tonight is the night that you will have her for yourself.”

Zune’s mother galloped away with delight, for she had a plan to outwit them all. Her son was going to be a notable, one of the best on the land of Tush. The land, she thought, will be renamed ‘The Great Zune of Tush’.

Zune watched the black beauty as she swooshed her tail back and forth, admiring her form. She glanced at him and then moved her head the other way, turning her back completely towards him. Zune giggled to himself. She was a tease. It didn’t bother him. He loved to look at every part of her. Her form was so well designed that he had to let out a huge sigh and then took back in, a deep breath to once again continue to admire her from behind.

Suddenly Zune felt a push that got him unbalanced. He yelled out, “what are you doing?”, as he saw the pusher. It was the white stallion from the white lands on the grey fields; another horse with his white coat, demanding him to push back and fight. Zune remembered him. He had visited the land of Tush before to see the beautiful black beauty; and now he was challenging him.

“You’re looking at what belongs to me. We’ve already set our commitment with one another.” The white stallion was abrasive with his tone.

“You? You’re not even from these parts. How can you claim one of ours? Her father will not agree to that.”

“He already did. We promised him many of our flowers on our land. Flowers that do not grow here.” The white stallion was boastfully proud when he spoke.

“He will never agree to your bland flowers, when ours are full of strong colors.”

“Yet, he did. For ours are exotic to him and he wish to mix them to get a unique kind and spread them all across your land of Tush.”

Zune got angry. It was a strategy of betrayal that the father of black beauty had engaged in that got him enraged. He let out a loud cry, which made all on the field to turn and look. There was a fight brewing, but the white horse just grinned and galloped towards the black beauty. Zune galloped away to tell his dear mother. The white horse was ruining her plans.

“Mother, you won’t believe what I’ve heard.” Zune was sullen.

“What was that cry about and what is that white horse doing with black beauty?” His mother was nervously concerned.

“That’s what I’m here to tell you. He had acquired her already, a commitment from the black beauty’s father.”

“What? Can’t be! He’s lying. Her father would never agree to that. Did you ask her father?”

“No, but why would he turn down so many exotic flowers from the white lands?”

“A trade? No never! I would speak to her father, not on your behalf, but on the behalf of the land of Tush. We will not mix with the white horse. Not now, not ever.” Zune’s mother was filled with fury. She didn’t know how she could possible continue with her plan. She grazed her way up to the part on the higher mountains of Tush to speak to the father of the black beauty.

“Your Highness, what do I hear? You are giving away black beauty to the white lands? What would become of our land?”

“How dare you come and speak to me like that? How dare you question my authority?” Black beauty’s father was more than enraged, he felt humiliated.

“But sir, I will not stand for this and neither will anyone else. Have you even spoke to the council?”

“The council? They are a bunch of baboons. What do they know about flourishing this land? My deal is the best deal in history. We will have a multitude of exotic beauties that will surely be on demand. We will be the richest land ever.”

“But what of our kind?”

“What of our kind? We’re still here. You’re foolish. They will not replace us. We will simply marry them off for profit and preserve our own kind.”

The Highness turned his back for he was done speaking. He didn’t want to waste his time trying to convince foolish ones who didn’t understand business. Zune’s mother trodded back down to the field where he was busy resting under an apple tree. Zune had lost all hope of ever getting hold of the black beauty after seeing her with the white stallion. She would never be interested in him.

“Mother, our life here will be different with all the exotics prodding around. Would they even like me? Who will I hold then?” Zune barely uttered his words out, for he felt defeated.

“Don’t worry Zune. I have a plan. You will have black beauty all to yourself. You’ll see.” His mother grinned.

Later on that day, Zune went with the herd of horses to the lake for washing and for fresh water. Black beauty was among them. She smiled at Zune as he made a spectacle of himself playing in the lake. The other horses were amused as well, “he he he”. Black beauty was one of the last to finish before heading back to the field. Zune trotted out of the lake in such a way that he fell to the ground hitting a rock. He yelled out in agony. It startled black beauty, who was trailing behind the last group to leave. She rushed to his aide.

“Zune, are you hurt?”

“I think I’ve broken something.”

“I’ll go get help.” She began to leave.

“No, don’t leave me. It’s getting dark and no one else is around. I will surely be attacked by wild beasts. Please, stay with me. I won’t be able to fend off the wild beasts alone. My mother will look for me, once she realized I am missing.” Zune pleaded.

Black beauty grew worried and afraid to be away from her herd, but she didn’t want to abandon him either. She stayed with him all through the night.

The next morning Zune’s mother found them sleeping by the lake. She grinned with delight. She had a story to tell to all the land of Tush. Zune, her son had held black beauty and now she was his. No more exotics. The Highness plan was foiled. Her plan had worked, and now the land will be called the great Zune of Tush. A morning herd had come to the lake and had witnessed Zune and black beauty still resting. They were astonished and made so much rustling noise of gossip that both sleepy heads had awaken. Black beauty tried to explain, but no one would believe her. Zune apologized to her and also tried to explain, but no one would believe him. They trotted back to the field with their heads down, where they met his Highness.

“What is this black beauty? What have you done?”

“Zune was injured and I couldn’t leave him alone to be devoured by the wild beasts. I…”

The Highness was suspicious and suspected that Zune’s mother intervened to muddle things up.

“Never mind. You will still be held by the white stallion. That business deal has already been made. He will understand.”

Black beauty quivered, for now she was confused. She enjoyed talking to Zune and tending to his injury. It was the best time she had ever had. They had fun being together, but now she will never see him again.

It was not too long after black beauty was held by the white stallion, that they had an exotic offspring. They named their offspring Zebra. Zebra showed her black and white stripes with pride. It was the talk of many lands, for they did not understand how Zebra got her stripes. It is a well know fact that the male horse gave the color of the coat and the father had a white coat. Where did the black came from?…

Pearl jumped up, shocked of the outcome of the story the clouds gave.

“That can’t be. The story is all wrong. That’s not how it’s supposed to happen.”

Pearl tried hard to rewind, concentrating seriously on the clouds. If only she could push the clouds back in the direction right before the Highness gave poor black beauty away. If only she could push the clouds. Push, push, push. She sat up concentrating hard, whispering words of forgiveness. Please forgive Zune for playing such a trick. Please, please.

Her eyes fixed on the clouds, she continued to ask for forgiveness. She was sure that Zune deserved better. He was only listening to his mother and acted out of love. He didn’t deserve to lose his chances with black beauty.

The light shined through the clouds as Pearl used her mind to push the clouds back and rewind. There, she did it!  The clouds moved back to where the Highness was about to speak. Zune was given a second chance. Pearl smiled. It worked! She had the powers to push back the clouds of time, for a new beginning. She laid back down on the grass and watched the show with a new ending. The clouds moved slowly forward, but this time in a new direction.

…The Highness was surprised to see Zune and Black Beauty. He was hearing the gossips of the other horses still spilling around him. He felt he had no choice, something had to be done.

“Zune, did you hold black beauty?”

Zune was terrified. He had done something that was forbidden. His mother stared nervously, waiting for his reply. She felt her plan was going to backfire.

“Sir, I had no choice. I had tripped and injured myself on the sharp rock near the lake. I wanted black beauty to get help for me, but I heard wild beasts in the bushes. I was afraid for her and for myself. I thought if we stayed together, we would not be attacked. It was our lives I was thinking about.” Zune hoped that her father would excuse them.

The Highness looked over at black beauty. She was flushed with embarrassment and could not speak. The Highness had to make an important decision. He had already promised black beauty to the white stallion, but now he couldn’t go through with it. He saw that black beauty’s eyes were fixed on Zune. She loved him.

“Well, the only thing I can do is to give you to Zune.” The Highness chuckled. They did make a good looking couple. Black beauty smiled. They both trotted away, playing in the field. Zune’s mother chuckled with relief. She was delighted.

Later on, Zune and black beauty bore an offspring. His coat shined with luxurious gleam. It’s thickness was one that he boasted for all to see. Zune was proud of his little black stallion who trotted beside him heading towards his mother, black beauty…

Pearl jumped up. She had finally gotten the ending she wanted. The clouds, too, where satisfied and it moved away across the sky leaving the sun to shine brighter. But Pearl had another problem to deal with. She had watched the show in the sky and lost track of time. Her water bucket was empty. She ran back to the path as fast as she could to fetch some water. Yet, it was very late. She was supposed to already be back with a full bucket of water. Her mother was going to be furious for she will be late to start cooking. If only she could use her powers and go back in time. No. That’s not what she needed. She needed her powers to speed things.

Push, push, push. Pearl concentrated real hard. She dumped her bucket and scooped up a water full. Yet, she couldn’t run; not with a full bucket. Instead she asked for forgiveness, and pushed on. The sun was surely following her, shining down against her skin; but it didn’t burn. It only gave her a darker tan. Her skin had now turned mocha as she struggled with the bucket of water.

Her mother watched her as she walked towards her, placing the bucket of water on the ground. Pearl was ready for her scolding and said nothing as tears began rolling down her cheeks. But instead Pearl’s mother grinned and picked the bucket up.

“Pearl, I’m surprised. You are early today. I suppose I would have to start dinner early.”

“Early?” Pearl thought, it worked. She had pushed time to speed everything up. She had her special powers to push, make things work for her. She had the sun to shine through her and to make her skin gleam as luxurious as black beauty’s coat. She smiled.