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Horses (or better known as The Bet)

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Disclaimer: I do not own Night at the Museum or anything in common with it. Any problems with me? I’ll let you know when I care!

“Is that a challenge?” Jedediah laughed, as he turned his whole body to face Octavius, the laughter and calm conversation surrounding the campfire silenced by the meer question. Octavius swallowed hard although the tone was light and carefree, Jedediah’s eyes held a spark of interested and cheekiness.

 

“Yes” Octavius found himself agree slowly, “If you can maintain my horse for an entire week” Jedediah leaned forward on the log, resting his left elbow on his left knee and set his chin to rest in the palm of his hand. Octavius had him right where he wanted him, “Then I shall join you on one of the little camping outdoor activity you do with the kids”. Jedediah studied the Roman general sitting on the bare dirt ground beside his legs, before he flashed one of his radiant smiles.

 

“Ok” Jedediah chuckled dropping his head between his legs, he ran his fingers through his dirt golden brown hair before he looked back at Octavius, “Why don't we go all the way?”

 

“Mmm?”

 

“I take care of your horse for a week, and you take good care of mine” Jedediah nodded his head over to the little herd of horses in the far outside of the campfire some standing watching them, others resting on the ground and the few others were playing around with each other. “Whoever returns the horse to its original owner” Jedediah reached down to his right side and picked up his tossed hat and dusted off the sand, before he smirked at Octavius “loses”

 

“Okay” Octavius agreed, eyeing far over Jedediahs lap and past his subordinates shoulders to the horses playing and kicking up dirt, rocks, and sticks. Harley, happily neighed as another horse jumped in front of her and chased her around. He could do this.

 

“Now hold on just a moment” Jedediah caught Octavius attention again “I didn't hear what you wanted if by some miracle you do win” Jedediah teased as he placed his hands by his hips on the log and leaned back on them. Octavius looked at him for a moment puzzled, what would he want if he managed to win?   

 

“Well, what would you like?” Octavius asked crossing his stretched out legs, Jedediah gasped, and shook his head.

 

“No, partner it doesn't work like that” Jedediah leaned back forward elbows resting on his knees and he leaned in close to Octavius, poking him in the chest, “You have to pick what you want me to suffer through, you and only you” Jedediah made his point across by poking Octavius in his chest after every word he said.

 

“Alright, I shall abide by your rules” Octavius surrender, “If I shall win-”

 

“By some miracle” Jedediah interrupted

 

“If I shall by some miracle” Octavius corrected himself accordingly, “win, then I wish for you to...” Octavius paused a moment, and stared at Jedediah, the crowd of mixed up Roman soldiers, cowboy ruffians and young teenagers sat egarly around the fire unable to tear their eyes away from the mind blowing scene before them.

 

“Come on, there has to be something you want me to suffer through” Jedediah smirked as he rocked his head to the side. Octavius drew a deep breath, he doesn’t want Jedediah to suffer through anything, in fact the opposite he wants Jedediah to enjoy every minute.

 

“If you shall fail in taking care of my horse, then I want you to spend a night with me” Octavius simply said, unaware of how nasty and foul the minds were of their audience. They all at least had paused, giving Octavius a chance to correct himself, but when no correction followed they all broke.

 

“Oh wow!” Randy hollered out slapping his knee, “You just go and get it dont cha Roman?!”

 

“Oh my never knew the General was quite this outspoken” One of the roman soldiers whispered to a cowboy on his right right. Octavius froze and replayed the words in his head. 

 

“You sly dog!” laughed Tuck, who was leaning forward over his knees, head dropping between his legs, he then lifted his head to suck in a huge breathe, only to glance at Jedediah and continue his heartfelt laughter. “Oh my word! you got Mr. Strong and Brash blushing like a school girl virgin!!” All the head turned to Jedediah as he turned his head away only to feed to crowd more as they started to throw, ‘Aww’’s, and ‘that's adorable’, and a bunch of other cute things Jedediah didn’t like being thrown around.

 

“Oh hahaha you keep laughing and ill tell Ms. Carbell about that little letter you always been too afraid to give her!” Jedediah threatened, Tuck cleared up quick, and glared at Jedediah.

 

“You leave her outta this” Jedediah smiled and stuck out his tongue.

 

“Oh no, please I would never assume or put Jedediah in that position if it makes him uncomfortable” Octavius interrupted, missing the light teasing in the air, “Jedediah if I have done something that upsets you plea-” Jedediah raised his hand shaking it lightly large smile on his face and a faint blush on his cheeks.

 

“No, calm down partner they just teasing you, its ok, no need to get worked up now” Jedediah smirked, and Octavius let out a breathe. They all calmed down some still jiggly, others wiping the tears away from their eyes, Jedediah stared into the fire before sticking his hand out to Octavius.

 

“One night only?” Octavius stared at the hand, and grinned

 

“One night only” The handshake was firm, but their hands did linger when they broke apart. Jedediah smile another one of his charming smile and stretched his arms above his head and stood.

 

“Welp, I better get to restin, if I wanna win properly” Jedediah dusted himself off and stepped over the fake log and to his horse who stopped chasing the other and gently galloped to Jedediah.

 

“But it’s only Friday” Octavius murmured as he watched Jedediah pet Harley, and took her by the reins leading them away.

 

“Good Luck” Tuck laughed, shaking his head, a low murmur of agreement echoed around him. Octavius and his soldier looked around puzzled.

 

“Thank you but I feel it will be him that need the luck” Octavius commented, who also got a few nods of agreement besides him.

 

“Ehh, I don't know Harley is a silly willy, she once hide Jedediahs hat an entire week because he didn't feed her red apples” Sam pointed out

 

“And she also snuck in when he was sleeping and took his pants” Charlie added on chuckling, “we all watched for about 35 minutes of him chasing her around pantsless falling all around in the dirt, she would let him get close then take off in a circle” Charlie smiled to himself and stared into the campfire, “Best wasted 35 minutes of my life”

 

“Cool, but you don't know the Generals horse, Balius” Marius shuddered at the thought of the muscular black horse, “He once bit me because I didn't put the saddle on the correct way he wanted, and bastards got strong jaws”

 

“He bit you?!” Joivan shouted angry, “he once shit on me because I had to put on different horseshoes than he usually wears! The ones he wears wear getting rusted in deep places so i took them off and gave him some temporarily ones!” Joivan explained, “then the beast waited until I was doing his back legs and then let it all out at once happened so fast” Joivan finished angrily now thinking about the horses.

 

“Umm i'm confused” the small voice of a teenager about 15 spoke up from in between the cowboys, sitting on the log, “How is a bite better than…...pooping?”

 

“Because I don't have to burn my damn clothes if I get bitten!” Joivan huffed “And those were my favorite!”

 

“I don’t believe Balius would ever do that” Octavius said appalled and hurt, “Balius is always good to me”

 

“Sounds like he’s always good for you” Tuck corrected smirking, “But that don't matter none because both of y’all have y’all work cut out”

 

“Oh hell yes, wish I could see all in person” Angus cut in leaning back against the log, and covering his face with his dusty cowboy hat. Octavius looked about the men around him

 

“You think I cannot win the challenge?”

 

“Nah, nah not that” Angus waved his hand roughly around Octavius direction, “It's just gonna be something worth seeing” Angus casually ended "From both ends"

 

“What he means is sir, is that you and Jedediah have very opposite personalities, and your horses are an embodiment of those personality just stronger, and more stubborn and it's gonna be very intriguing to watch how all this will play out” Appius explained, Angus pointed directly in Appius way and did a finger gun with clicking noises.

 

Octavius sat for a moment before giving a weak “oh, well then good night gentlemen”, Octavius stood and did a bow, before eyeing his men, “Do not stay for too long, we have drills early tomorrow night” then he turned and walked the way to his diorama.

 

The group of men watched, until Octavius was out of ear shot before they started their hushed whispering.

 

“No way Jedediah will be able to handle Bailus, he’s gonna drive Jedediah crazy!” Joivan warned looking around his fellow roman soldiers few nodded in agreement.

 

“Well don't put so much trust in Octavius, just wait till he’s chasing Harley around because she got his helmet or a robe” Charlie countered pointing at Joivan

 

“I don't know they both sound like a lot of work” Marius whispered staring into the fire

 

“All those who bet that they both win and make it through an entire week, because we have stubborn leaders especially when it comes to each other they will both do each others bet  extraordinarily well and along way one of them will admit their feeling for the other!” Tuck shouted standing up and looking over the present fellows

 

“Agreed!” more than half the campfire residents cheered

 

“But the question is which one?” Sam quietly added in after

 

“General Octavius of course” a roman soldier on Marius left said Randy shook his head

 

“Nah, Jedediah”

 

“What about both, at the same time?” Appius suggested

 

They all looked questioningly at each other, a pregnant pause filled the air before a string of “Nah” filled the air

 

“Alright then let's make a bet ourselves! Those who say Jedediah raise your hands” Tuck stood once again and took count of those who raised their hands.

 

“Ok, Octavius?” Tuck counted those who voted on Octavius

 

“Alright now boys we have ourselves a wager” Tuck smiled clapping his hands together loudly.

 

“What does the winner get?” Angus asked his hat sits perfectly on his head as he is now sitting up straighter.

 

“The loser has to wear the winner clothes” Tuck was interrupted by a sea of groans “Not that way ya nasty varmints” Tuck blushed himself at the thought, “Us cowboys will wear skirts if Octavius wins, and y’all roman will wear pants if Jedediah wins” Tuck explained

 

“Mmm, I'm in” Angus smiled, there was weak murmuring in the background before people started to raise their hands.

 

“Me to” Charlie smirked

 

“Count me in” Appius joined in chest filled with confidence

 

“Braden you for team Jed?” Tuck grabbed the little sheet of paper from Sam and the small pencil from Randy.

 

“I'm on team both” Braden corrected Tuck nodded and made a separate column for him on the paper.

 

“Alright, different but I support that anyone with Braden?” Tuck asked around looking at each soldier and cowboy

 

“You to Leo?” Tuck checked as Leo raised his hand by his face, Leo smiled

 

“Yes” he confirmed

 

“Alright, that's 9 for Jedediah, 7 for Octavius, and 3 for Both, sound good” Tuck counted then folded the paper and put in in his pants pocket.

 

“Yeah, alright then boys” Tuck set his hands on his hips and looked at the crowd of eager faces “This all starts as soon as Jed and Octavius switch their horses on Monday”