Chapter 49 Summary
My Last Home
One day during the summer Jack is groomed with such extraordinary care that he senses another change may be about to occur in his life. Willie seems both anxious and excited as he gets into the chaise with his grandfather. He tells the boy he hopes the ladies like the horse, for they are well suited to one another. Several miles from the village, they pull up at a pretty house with grass, shrubbery, and a drive up the front lawn.
Willie rings the bell and asks if Miss Blomefield and Miss Ellen are home. Willie waits outside with Jack while his grandfather goes in to visit with the women. Soon Thoroughgood comes back outside followed by three ladies. One is tall and pale, wrapped in a white shawl and leaning on a younger lady with dark eyes and a merry face. The third woman, very stately-looking, is Miss Blomefield. They all come over to look at the horse and ask questions. The young lady, Miss Ellen, is quite taken with the animal and says she is sure she will like the horse, for he has a kind face. The tall woman, Lavinia, believes she would always be nervous riding behind a horse which had once collapsed, as it might happen again.
Thoroughgood patiently explains that many fine horses have been ill-treated or treated carelessly, causing such an incident. His experience with horses tells him this is the case with the horse in front of them, though he does not want to unduly influence their decision about the animal. Miss Blomefield says they have always respected his advice on such matters and they will be glad to accept his offer of a trial period with the horse.
In the morning, a sharply dressed young man comes to get Jack, and he is pleased with the animal until he sees the horse’s knees. He is surprised that Thoroughgood would ever recommend such a blemished horse to such fine ladies; the gentleman replies that beauty is not what matters and he will take the horse back if he does not suit them. Jack is led to his new home and settled in to his comfortable new surroundings. The next day when he is cleaning the horse’s face, the groom says one of his old horses, Black Beauty, had a white star on his face just as this one does. Next the man sees a tiny scar on the horse’s neck, which startles the groom into making a closer inspection of the animal in front of him.
He soon realizes this is, indeed, Black Beauty, and he tells the horse he is Joe Green, the young boy who almost killed him so long ago. Joe begins to pet the animal with great joy. Jack does not recognize the man before him as the boy he remembers as little Joe Green, but he knows the man is a friend and knows by his voice that he is Joe Green. Black Beauty puts his nose up to say that they are now...
(The entire section is 783 words.)