When she was young, Granny volunteered at a retirement home for imaginary friends. She would read them books, listen to their stories,  and keep them company. Her favorite resident was an aging, black unicorn with an opalescent alicorn who’d been popular in the 1700’s.

“You know, I’ve always been jealous of horses,” he told her. “I was James Watt’s imaginary friend when he was a boy. He grew up to coin the term ‘horsepower’. I’ve never gotten over that. He could have used ‘unicornpower.’ No one would have minded. It sounds good.”

Granny tested it out. “This baby has eighty unicorns under the hood.” She whistled. “Oh my. That does sound good.”

“Doesn’t it? I think he did it just to spite me for not spearing his sister with my horn when he wanted me to. Told me he’d rather have a real horse that listened to him than an imaginary unicorn who wouldn’t.” He let out a sad knicker. “James never imagined me again. He was only five years old.” A few tears dribbled down the unicorn’s muzzle. “Stupid horses.”

Granny always referred to engines in units of unicornpower after that. When she took up farming with Gramps she liked to brag she was the only woman in the county with a thirty-two unicornpower tractor. Drove him absolutely nuts.

tractorpower

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