With every gallop of this strong stallion, Ashleigh’s hair flowed behind her. Black as coal, dancing in the wind. She sure loved riding her stud, given as a gift by her daddy. Most late afternoons Ashleigh could be found either riding Trace, or grooming him. Named Trace, simply for the fact his body was jet-black, with exception of a trace of white of his forehead. Holding very little interest in anything else, Trace became a best friend to Ashleigh since childhood. Now being seventeen, they had spent quite some time together. Trace knew Ashleigh well, as she him. Everyone in the surrounding area knew of the Chance family. They possessed the most acreage around. It was even rumored that ole Daddy Chance had won half his acreage by almost killing a man for getting Ashleigh’s older sister Reya pregnant. So, between neighbors, a deal was struck. Half the acreage, and the young man would marry Reya. So, from there the rumors began. Reya being so young when she became pregnant, did not discourage rumors of rape either. She was ashamed of what she had done. Ashleigh learned from this, never letting go of her heart. Many of ranch hand young men tried their hand with Ashleigh. Daddy never worried about her, for she knew how to take care of herself. Tall, slender, eyes near as black as her hair. Carrying herself more like a man, wearing jeans and plaid shirts. Little as she tried, never realizing it did not matter what she wore, the mens eyes would always be on her. Trace knew when she meant business as well, when getting men to back off.