"Get him Dan!" cheered Martha on a fence as her bo, Dan, was failing to chase down a baby goat. The Pontipee's mama goat, Suzanna, gave birth to three kids this spring, much to the family's delight. Dan and Martha had decided to visit Suzanna that morning. It was Dan's turn to milk her and Martha adored seeing the baby goats. However, during the whole process, one of the kids, the only boy, had gotten lost.
"Hold still you little…" Dan growled as he pounced on the kid only for the goat to easily dodge him.
"Bbbbaaaaa!" taunted the kid who was enjoying this game of tag. Martha was laughing so hard that she was snorting. Dan lunged again, only to missing and get a face full of mud. The kid ran around the Dan, bleating happily.
"Are you alright, Dan?" Martha snorted as Dan got a started chasing after the goat.
"I'm fine," he grumbled as slipped and landed on his side. The kid did a pirouette, then ran toward Dan. Seeing his chance, Dan waited until the last moment to grab the goat. However, the kid jumped over Dan's head and raced down his back. The kid did a quick dance on Dan's behind before jumping off to do victory laps.
"Bbbbaaaa!" bleated the kid victoriously as he pranced around. Martha laughed, snorted, and clapped while Dan just scowled.
"Bbbbaaa!" Suzanne cried out, signally an end to the game. The kid ran up to Dan and licked his face in thanks for the fun before returning to his mama. As the kid started suckling, Dan wiped himself off while Martha tried to calm down.
"That… was the… funniest thing…," Martha snorted wiping her eyes. "I've seen… in along… time." Dan tried to scowl at her but it quickly turned into his usual bobcat grin.
"Hey Dan! Martha! Is everything alright?" called out Gideon.
"Everything's fine," Dan replied.
"Did one of the pigs get to lose?" asked Alice. "We heard a lot of snorting." Martha stiffened and tears formed in her eyes.
"Don't worry about it. Everything is under control," Martha said coldly before turning on her heel and quickly walking away. Dan stood there for a moment, unsure of what had caused her sudden mood change. Then he heard Martha start to cry.
"Martha!?" Dan called out as he raced after her.
"It's nothing!" Martha snapped as she wiped her eyes with her sleeve.
"Hey, hey, hey," Dan cooed. "Martha what's wrong. Please tell me."
"It's… it's what Alice said," Martha sobbed. "She thought one of the pigs got loose because she heard me snort when I was laughing."
"Martha," Dan said soothingly as he slipped his arms around her.
"I hate my laugh, it's ugly. Growing up in Chicago, the kids in school would call me Martha the Pig because of my laugh," Martha explained.
"Alice didn't know," Dan said.
"I know but…," Martha said and waved her hands helplessly, unable to find words to express herself.
"Martha, let me tell you this, I love your laugh," Dan said. "And I'm going to do my best to hear that laugh as much as possible for the rest of my life. Every day if possible."
"Oh Dan," Martha sighed happily.
"I'm serious," Dan stated as he kissed the top of Martha's head. "I love everything about you, especially your laugh. Because it means you are happy, which makes me happy. Now can I hear that laugh one more time before we fetch Suzanna's milk?" Martha gave a small laugh and a tiny snort before taking Dan's hand and returning to the goat pen.