Disclaimer – I don't own Horseland.


While Alma did not by breakfast at school everyday, whenever they served French toast sticks, she made sure to go ahead and go the cafeteria line. That was how Alma first met Maria at the beginning of the school year and how the first girl other then herself was introduced to her and Bailey's band of school friends.

Melina was Hispanic and her family had been established in America fro quite a few generations. It was so much so that Maria's family didn't speak Spanish at home and English was the only language she knew. She had tried picking up Spanish from Alma and her new friend's cousin Santiago, who preferred to be called Santi, but Melina soon found she struggled with second languages.

The two girls had finished going through the lunch line and had gone and sat with Santi and Bailey. They were still waiting for their two other school friends to show up. Jeffery and Cameron were known for being late though at times. Santi suddenly glanced up as he saw two girls come into the cafeteria. "Don't look now, but there are the two new girls I am supposed to be helping in the ESL class. Let's just say that they're trouble. They speak no English."

Bailey shook his head at the older boy. "Isn't that a tad bit mean? I mean, they did just move here."

"No, when I said they speak no English, I meant they refuse to learn to speak English and feel that people should converse in Spanish only to them… expesully if we are Hispanic…" Santi had a great deal of irritation in his voice.

"I think Bailey was referring to the fact that the phrase is typically used when people speak no English and wish to convey it to people. He thought you were insulting the fact that they couldn't speak English," Alma opened up her carton of milk.

"I get it… sorry for the confusion Bailey. Anyways…" Santi was interrupted by the two girls coming over.

"Hello Santi… how are you," the older of the two girls flirted with the boy. Alma raised her eyebrows and looked the girls up and down. The two girls wore clothes that were against the school rules but were passable the first few days because they were new. There was too much skin and they seemed to really lay it on heavily with the fake fur. The makeup and jewelry however were not any more then Alma would expect a decent Hispanic girl to wear, but there was a chance that they might even take that over board.

"Is she flirting with your cousin Alma?" Melina asked all of a sudden. Her eyes went wide as the two girls gave her looks that said they might want to claw her eyes out.

"Yes chica… they are," Alma then turned to the girl. "What exactly do you think you're doing?"

"What does your friend think she's doing… not speaking Spanish to us… and is he Hispanic… he looks too pale to be one… why are you hanging out with him?" the girl Alma's age's voice was not very nice.

"Bailey has been friends with me my entire life almost," Alma snapped back at the girls.

"You should stick with your own kind, right Rosita," the older girl admonished.

"You're supposed to be my own kind? My grandmother would tan your hide for those skimpy clothes you're wearing," Alma glared at them with death glares.

"Your grandma is not our grandma!" Rosita made her lips go very thin. "Maria… she's so dumb."

"What else to expect from third and forth generation Mexican American," the older girl commented.

"For your information, I am first generation American Hispanic," Alma said sternly. "My father, uncle and mother immigrated here and are now United States citizens and proud of it… at least they show their pride in being Hispanic and American!"

"Still… how can you hang out with someone who isn't Hispanic… or this loser who doesn't know her heritage," Maria commented.

"You're the one who doesn't understand your culture! Don't talk to us about it… and if you don't think I won't tell the teacher that your refusing to learn, be mindful that I will," Santiago snapped.

Maria then turned to Bailey and Melina, calling them both a very rude name. Suddenly Alma's eyes lit with a fire and she stood up. Out of her mouth came some very choice words. Santiago raised his eyebrows at her language, while Bailey, having heard them from her father when he had dropped things on his foot or done other dumb things covered his ears. Melina's eyes went wide because Alma's tone said it all.

As the two girls stormed off, Melina shook her head. "Why do I get the feeling that is some Spanish I am never going to want to learn?"

"Let's just say, the translation equates me making enemies with those two girls. If they hassle you, let me know," Alma commented.

"No fights Alma… they look like the kind that might," Bailey waved at where there two other friends were coming over.

"Oh… I got something better then that. I got a head of knowledge, the teachers and if I tell my grandmother, she'll march up to the school and give them a big lecture," Alma commented.

"Oh yeah… she's old… but her lectures are tough. She gave me one once and even though I didn't understand what she said to me, I knew she meant business," Bailey shook his head. "She makes great cookies too."

"That's grandmother," Santiago smiled. "Wasn't the lecture about having climbed a tree at Uncle's place to rescue a cat and not being able to get down? I believed she said things like getting a ladder so you don't break your useless neck?"

"Yeah… that was the time," Bailey commented.

Author's note – I will admit that I am not Hispanic, but I don't think that Hispanics should treat people who can't speak Spanish or aren't their culture rudely. I heard a story on the news where a Hispanic girl got beat up because she couldn't speak Spanish. I also was yelled at by an irate customer at work who expected me to know exactly what she wanted… in rapid fire Spanish. Not to mention… it isn't fare to all those who MADE the effort to learn English… they are some of my best customers and always give me smiles and try their best to sign what they mean if they can't say it. :)