Friday, May 27, 2011


Good Morning Faithful Friday Fiction Fans,
Wow! What a week! I think most, if not all of my readers know what has been going on this week. The Sunday tornado was the 8th worst on record. The devastation
is unbelievable! I've been through some of the worst parts and there
really are no words to describe what it felt like, looks like or
anything. The sun is shining today which makes things less overwhelming,
but still, pray for the folks here.
S and I were helping clean up a yard yesterday, and in the morning it was cool and cloudy. But by noon, the sun had come out and by the time we got home, we had some nice sunburns. Okay, well, maybe they weren't so nice.:}
As you may have guessed, I really haven't had much time to write this week.:) I did manage to get some written last night but that is about all. This week has been so crazy that half the time we had no idea what day of the week it was!
I don't want to post yet another Triple Creek Ranch story, so I'm trying
to decide what to post. I had thought of one thing I had written, but
I'm not sure. I guess I'll go see what I have that I haven't posted
yet. I'll be right back.
I have decided to go ahead and post it.

Characters: 1
Words: 550
Instructions: Reflective

Rebekah M.

It was quite chilly when I crawled out of my sleeping bag and,
unzipping my tent door, stepped out into the crisp morning. Everything
was quiet and still. The brown grass at my feet crunched with each
footstep. Stately, old pine trees stood guard on the bit of land which
juts out into the aqua and teal lake where scarcely a ripple disturbs
its placid face. Across from my camping site, on the other side of the
lake, march row upon row of trees, up the mountainside, until the
snow-covered cliffs halt most of them.
I gave a sigh of contentment. This was the first time I had gotten to be alone for more
than fifteen minutes since the whirl of things began. I don’t know when
the whirl started exactly, it just seemed to creep up and then I was in
the midst of it all. Now at last maybe I can get some much needed rest,
to try to sort things out, to understand, to consider, to decide. Out
here alone I hope to be able to find the peace and joy I had. Alone?
No, not really. My Heavenly Father is here and that is all I need. It
was His hand that guided through all: weddings and funerals, births and
deaths, over-work and no work at all, excitement of courtships and
heartache of breakups,tornados and earthquakes, political unrest and
political victories; all combined to frazzle a mind already bewildered
with the many decisions of everyday life.
I think I’ll just sit here today by my campfire and let the quietude of the mountains and
water calm my feelings as I read the dearest book in the world. How can
I help but grow refreshed when the Author of each word and thought is
my Lover and Friend, my Father, my Savior, my Jesus? If I knew Him not,
I would surely be the most miserable of all persons.
Some people thought my coming away into this wilderness alone was just a way of
trying to escape from everything and hide. They were somewhat right. I
am hiding from everything. But not as they think. My Hiding Place is
the Rock in a weary land, the Shelter in storms, a Tower, a Shield, a
Refuge. No, I don’t expect everything to be perfect when I return, but
it will be okay.
The sun on those snow covered peaks is glorious!
The birds are singing above me, and I hear a squirrel chattering
somewhere. Maybe I’ll go sit on that rock in the sun. No worries, no
cares, no thought for tomorrow.Isn ’t that how life is supposed to be?
I can echo the psalmist when he penned the words, “Oh that I had wings
like a dove, then would I fly away and be at rest.” But itwouldn ’t be
the same rest which the Shepherd gives to His sheep. On the whole, I am
glad, thankful even, that I have a heart which can feel pain and joy,
love and sorrow, and my Savior’s matchless, boundless, endless mercy,
grace and love!

My days alone here are ended. I’m going back to
be ”in the world but not of it.” Peace and rest fill me as I go with my
The end

I wrote the above months before this all happened. But it is still true for me.
I hope the same is true for each of my readers.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Meleah's Western - Part 40

Welcome Wednesday Western Readers,
didn't think I'd get time to get on here and post today, but as you can
see, I do or I did, or something. My brain is not all the way here, I
What with tornadoes on Sunday, rain, thunderstorms and babysitting Monday,
helping clean up some friends' house Tuesday and then spending several
hours waiting during a tornado warning last night after we had just
gotten to bed, and now waiting for those friends to get their pass to
let us back into the damaged area to clean up some more, my brain just
isn't working.
But, here is the Western. Enjoy!

Part 40

“Got ta get Par saddled,” Ty muttered feebly, trying to push back the bed clothes. “We’ll never make it at this rate, Carson.”

“Easy, Ty,” Jack was beside the bed with one hand on the sick man’s
pulse. “Par is just fine right now. You need to rest.” As he spoke,
Jack had laid his cool hand on Ty’s flushed and feverish face.
“Carson? Dan!” Ty’s words were growing excited. “Dan, where’s Carson? Ya saw him last! Where is he?”
“Carson is out riding, Ty, there is no need for alarm. He’ll be back.”

Momentarily calmed by Jack’s soothing words, Ty’s eyes closed and his
tense shoulders relaxed. Jack began bathing his face with the cool
water which Mrs. Fields had brought. Sally sat in stunned silence. Ty
had awakened but hehadn’t said one word to her. And who was Dan? Why did Ty talk of him instead of her?
As though in answer to her thoughts, Jack told her softly, “He’s delirious, Sally. He doesn’t know where he is or what is going on.”
“What can I do? I have to do something!” her voice was frantic and full of suppressed emotion.
Jack glanced at Joe who stood near the distressed girl, nodded at her and then jerked his head in the direction of the door.

Understanding his brother’s unspoken order, Joe gently pulled Sally to
her feet. “Come on,” he whispered sympathetically, “we can talk out
Before Sally really had time to comprehend where she was
being taken or to resist, Joe had her out of the sick room and seated
in a rocking chair near the table. She shook her head when offered
something to drink and attempted to rise, but Joe pushed her gently
back down.
“Sally,” he said softly, looking into her tired face,
“you have to eat. You must,” he added when she shook her head, “if you
want to help nurse Ty. Jack won’t let you back in the room unless you
“He has to, he’s my brother,” Sally swallowed hard and her chin quivered.

Resolutely Joe shook his head. “Ty is also Jack’s patient. If there is
a sick person, Jack is in charge and what he says is law. You have to
eat something if you want to go back in there.”
For a moment Sally
looked like she was going to continue to resist, but just then Mrs.
Fields pulled a fresh loaf of bread from the oven. The tantalizing
aroma was too much for Sally and after one more longing look at the
closed door, she nodded slightly, sure, however, that shecouldn’t swallow a mouthful.
“Good girl,” Joe sighed getting to his feet. He wasn’t sure what he would have done if she had insisted on not eating.

Having managed to eat two slices of the fresh, hot bread, Sally begged
to go back to her brother, and Joe nodded assent. Ty was sleeping when
they entered the room. Quietly she sank down in the chair beside him.
“What can I do?” Though still fighting back tears and fright, Sally
managed to speak calmly. The food and glass of fresh milk had seemingly
given her new courage. Jack let her bathe Ty’s face and hands while he
and Joe stepped to the far side of the room.
So intent on her brother was Sally that she didn’t hear their low-toned conversation.
“How is he?”

Jack shook his head. “I don’t like the look of his shoulder. I expected
a fever, but I’m afraid it is going to go much higher than it is now.
He is already weakened by lack of blood not to mention a long journey,
and if the fever lasts too long, well . . .” his voice trailed off
“We’ll keep praying.”
“That’s all you can do
right now. That and try to keep his sister from completely wearing
herself out. We don’t want her sick too. If you can keep her resting
and eating, I’ll do all I can for her brother.”
“I told her you wouldn’t let her back in the room if she didn’t eat,” Joe smiled slightly.
“Glad you thought of that.” And Jack looked over at the dark haired girl beside the bed. “Maybe it will help her to keep up.”
Ty began to mumble and move restlessly, and Jack left his brother to hurry to the bedside of his patient.

All that day Sally remained by her brother’s side. Leaving only for a
few minutes at a time when Joe, with persistence and skill, made her
eat a little. Thankfully shedidn ’t see Jack’s face when, as the
afternoon turned into evening, Ty’s fever continued to rise making his
delirium worse. He muttered and talked, called for Carson and kept
trying to get up. Never once did he call for his sister or seem to
notice her. When he saw Jack, he called him Dan and ordered Joe away
from his horse which he fancied was in the room with him.
one of his cries for Carson, Sally, with sudden terror grasped Joe’s
arm and whispered hoarsely, “Carson! Where is he?” She had just at that
moment realized that hehadn’t been around all day.
“Come out here and I’ll tell you.”

Seeing that Jack and Mrs. Fields were both with Ty, she followed with
pale cheeks. Once they where out of the sick room, Joe told her of the
search to find those who had shot her brother.
Sally turned even
more pale and clutched at her locket. She began to shake and her breath
came in gasps while she looked at Joe in wild eyed terror. “No!” she
gasped out. “No! Not Uncle Bob too!” A wild burst of sobbing broke from
her and had not Joe caught her, she would have dropped. With great sobs
shaking her, she buried her face in her hands unmindful of the
encircling arms while she continued to cry, “Not Uncle Bob! No, not him


Friday, May 20, 2011

Triple Creek Ranch - Part 5

Good Morning Friday Fiction Fans,
This morning is slightly cool, cloudy with no rain yet and lots of birds chirping and singing. I don't know about you all, but our weather has been so crazy. One day we'll have the AC on and the next the windows open followed by having to turn the heat back on because it is so cold.:} Ah, well.
I was hoping to have a new story I could post this morning, but I haven't transferred it to the computer yet or gotten it proofed. So, hopefully next week.:) I could post another one of my old Scribbler stories, but since some of my faithful readers have already read them, I think I'll save them for another time. Are you tired of reading about Norman and Orlena yet?
I have several other stories that I need to write. Maybe I can get them worked on soon. And I still need to get to work on the sequel to Home Fires. I've been tossing around ideas for it, so if you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them!
Okay, here is the Triple Creek Ranch. Enjoy!

Part 5

“I’ll do nothing of the kind!” she fairly shouted. “I wouldn’t go to that old place if you paid me all the gold in China!”
Norman’s quiet voice was a marked contrast to Orlena’s angry one as he replied, “Good, because no one is going to pay you anything. Just the same, you are coming to live with Jenelle and me on the ranch.”
“Who says so?”
“I do.”
Orlena glared at her brother. “I won’t go. You can’t make me. I’m going to Madam Viscount’s Seminary.”
“Orlena, I’m your legal guardian and you are coming to the ranch.”
Then Orlena gave way to a tantrum just as she used to when as a five-year-old, her will had been thwarted. She screamed and cried, stomping her foot and throwing whatever she could lay her hands on is her anger until Norman, grasping her shoulders, pushed her into her chair and held her there.
“Orlena, that is enough!” Never had Norman’s voice been that stern.
The screaming stopped, but Orlena continued to cry and struggle. “I didn’t get a sister, I got a wildcat,” muttered Norman between tightly clenched teeth. His temper was roused and it was all he could do to keep from shaking the girl before him. All he could do was silently pray for help, for he had no idea what to do. Had it been a brother instead of a sister, Norman would undoubtedly have administered a severe chastisement.
It was several minutes before Orlena quieted down enough for her brother to draw up a chair before hers. “I know you don’t want to go with me,” he began slowly, searching for the right words, “but I’m afraid you have no choice. Jenelle is waiting for you, and I think if you are willing to give it a chance, you will learn in time to like it.”
A glare was the only reply he got.
“I can’t leave the ranch, I have too many responsibilities, and I can’t leave you by yourself.”
“Why not?” she demanded.
Norman’s eyebrows rose. “I think you just showed a good display of why not. If you can’t control yourself from exhibitions of that sort when something doesn’t suit your fancy, then you are not old enough to stay by yourself anywhere.”
“What about school?” The question was petulant.
“That hasn’t been decided yet.”
“Well, I’ll have you understand one thing here and now, Norman Mavrich,” Orlena’s voice became that of a haughty princess, “I am going to attend Madam Viscount’s Seminary as I did last year. Nothing you can say or do will prevent me.”
Wisely, Norman held his tongue and refrained from replying. He hoped desperately that she would forget about that place before school started again, for one thing he knew for certain, she was not going back to Madam Viscount’s Seminary!
Finding no reply coming from her brother, and assuming that he had surrendered to her in regards to school, she yielded to her curiosity and asked, “What else is going to change?”
“Well,” he longed to say, ‘your clothes’, but wasn’t sure if it would be wise yet, so he merely said, “Those are all the major changes. We will be packing a few trunks to ship out to the ranch, but we don’t have room for everything. Mr. Athey along with Mrs. O’Connor, will take care of the details of the house. I think we had better stir ourselves so that the necessary packing can be done before we have to leave.” Norman rose from his seat as he talked, then, looking down at his sister, he added gently, “I hope you will enjoy the ranch, Orlena. You and I haven’t spent much time together and don’t know each other all that well; perhaps that is mostly my fault for not coming to visit much. Now we have a chance to fix that and I hope we make the most of it.” With those last few words, he quietly withdrew from the room, leaving his sister silent.

How Norman ever lived through the rest of that day and the following one was never quite clear in his own mind. He knew he was constantly busy helping pack, answering hundreds of questions, trying to keep his temper with Orlena and a multitude of other things, but at last he was seated beside his sister as the train pulled away from the station. They were heading home.
The thought of seeing Jenelle again and getting away from the noise and bustle of the city kept Norman quiet and, though he kept a careful watch of his sister’s comforts, his mind was occupied. What would Orlena think of the ranch? What would Jenelle think of Orlena? Perhaps that was a more important question. Norman knew his sweet wife was longing to be a sister and friend to Orlena, but if she knew what she was really like-- He never let himself finish the sentence, partly because he had no idea what he would do if Jenelle decided that Orlena was beyond help, and partly out of a longing that Orlena had only been putting on an act when he used to visit. That last was a vain hope, and deep in his heart he knew it was, yet how anyone could be so selfish and stuck-up was beyond him.

Sitting beside her quiet brother in a traveling suit of the latest style, Orlena pouted. She had done nothing else it seemed since she had first been told she must go live on a ranch. If she had to go, she would at least make it very clear to everyone that she did not like it. Since Norman was either ignoring her on purpose or hadn’t noticed her disgust, she fell to wondering what her new, well, she wouldn’t call it home, was like. She would only be staying there for a few months before going back to her boarding school. What would it be like living in the country that she saw only through train car windows?

Any questions or comments?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Meleah's Western - Part 39

Welcome Western Wednesday Readers,
I'm trying to post this on a different browser to see if it fixes the problem. I don't think it will.:( Bother.

Part 39

Carson looked up. “What’d ya find?”
“A branding iron.”
Carson raised his eyebrows.
“You don’t brand cattle in the woods unless you are trying to hide it,” Jed said. “The way I figure it is a few cattle rustlers were using this as a re-branding place. They could easily get a few cattle from a herd about anywhere, bring them here and brand over the brand already on them. They were here yesterday when Ty rode out of the trees. Of course, being thieves with guilty consciences, they either thought he knew about them or was about to find them. So, one of them shot Ty and then they all left in a hurry, not bothering to make sure he was alone or dead, or to hide their evidence.”
The experienced trapper listened to this explanation in silence, now and then nodding slightly. “I reckon ya might be on ta somethin’. Let’s see if’n we can’t find where the shooter was waitin’. An’ then I reckon we ought ta check out that there path.”
Jed nodded, yet wondered how Carson could find where the one had been standing when he shot Ty. He didn’t have to wait long, for already Carson was examining the ground in some nearby brush.
“Right here,” he remarked, pointing. “Ya can see his footprints. Jest the same as one near the fire. I reckon they heard the horse comin’ ‘fore they saw him. An’ look there, that leaf was clean shot in two. A shot from here’d hit right where yer pa is.”
“It looks like he found something!” Jed declared, watching his father spring from his saddle and look intently at the ground. “Should we go find out?”
Thinking a moment, Carson agreed, saying they could check the path later.
It wasn’t long before the entire search party were gathered around Mr. Fields. “Look,” he was saying as Carson and Jed rode up. “See this hole? From the looks of it, I’d say Ty’s horse stumbled in it and that is why Ty got hit in the shoulder instead of being killed outright.”
For several minutes Carson examined the ground around the hole, gazed into the woods where the shot came from, and with his eye, traced yesterday’s path back into the trees. At last he nodded. “Seems reasonable. I remember Par were limpin’ slightly by the end a the day.”
“It seems like an act of Providence,” Jed remarked quietly, “that Par should stumble then.”
“I agree, Son. But who did it?”
Jim Fields glanced at his son quickly. “Sure?”
Jed nodded. “There is even a brand in the woods.”
“Mr. Fields, I’m beginnin’ to see how we’ve been losin’ cattle,” one of the hired hands put in.
“Yes, and we need to put a stop to it.” His face was grim. “You boys ready?”
“Just say the word, Boss.”
“Carson, I don’t like to put you in danger, and you can go on back to the house if you want; though I’ll admit having one more gun as well as your ability to read sign would--”
He got no farther for Carson interrupted him. “I aim ta spend the day lookin’ for ‘em myself, an’ I reckon yer company would be down right nice. Even jest knowin’ it were rustlers an’ not them, gives me a better feelin’.”
“Them who?” questioned Jed, puzzled.
“Long story. I’ll tell ya tonight,” Carson promised, mounting Flint and heading for the trees.

Sally, though clearly exhausted, couldn’t sleep long, for her mind replayed her brother’s accident over and over even in her sleep. The sun had barely risen when Sally again slipped into Ty’s room. No one was there except Ty.
“Oh, Ty,” she moaned, bending over him and gently brushing back his dark hair. “Ya have ta get better, ya jest have ta. I can’t lose you an’ Pa. Besides, we have to find our sister, Ty. Ya have ta help me.” Still talking softly, pleadingly, Sally perched on the edge of the bed.
There was no response from the still form of her dearly loved brother, the companion of so many childhood hours, the one who understood her better than had her own father. Would he ever open those dark, searching eyes of his again? Would those grey lips ever smile? Would she ever again hear that voice tease her as before?
“Ty!” she cried, tears spilling down her cheeks and dropping onto the bed clothes, “Ya can’t die!”
A hand was placed on her shoulder. She looked up. Jack stood there looking down at her. “Go and eat some breakfast.”
Sally shook her head. “I can’t.”
Again Sally shook her head. “Ain’t no use, I’m stayin’ by Ty.”
“Ty’s just the same as he was last night. He is weak from loss of blood, and it might be a while before he is rested enough to wake up. Go and eat. You can come back as soon as you’re done.”
If Jack had known Sally, he would have seen by the sudden determined tilt of her chin and a look in her eyes that she was not going to change her mind. She continued to sit beside her brother, her fingers softly playing with those stronger ones of his. When Jack again touched her shoulder, she didn’t even look at him, but shook her head. “Until Ty wakes up, I ain’t leavin’ him.”
Frowning, Jack withdrew from the room.
In a few minutes, Joe appeared beside Sally and asked softly, “How is he?”
She looked up, “Jest the same.”
He beckoned her over to the side of the room.
Reluctantly, after some hesitation, she followed.
“You need to--” Joe began but never got to finish his sentence, for at that moment, a groan came from the bed and Ty muttered something.
In an instant Sally was back beside the bed while Joe hurried to the door and in a low but insistent voice, called Jack.

Any Questions?

Friday, May 13, 2011

Triple Creek Ranch - Part 4

Well Friday Fiction Fans,
you think I had forgotten it was Friday? Don't worry, I didn't. Blogger
wasn't working, so I had to wait. But now it is up again, I'll give you
the next part of "Triple Creek Ranch." At least unless I hear a better
name for the ranch, that is what I'll call it. Thank you Christian and
Noah for your suggestions. As you can see, I used both of your

week I've been trying to write a story that a friend gave me the
instructions for. I had gotten the first part done, but then was stuck
for quite a while. I think I'm nearing the end of it though I'm still
unsure why she did what she did.:)

those of you who left comments on Wednesday, thanks.:) Sorry, I can't
make Thursday and Friday into Westerns, I mean Wednesdays.:) Just be
glad I'm giving you one every week now.:) I'm reading a book on how to
write a novel and finding out that I'm not doing to badly on the
Western.:) I am about ready to get it finished though. But don't hold
your breath. I still have a ways to go. :} I'm not sure how long, since
Ty, Carson and Sally often end up doing the unexpected, but we should
be at least half way, I think.

But here I am rambling on and on. I'll just stop and let you read the next part of the story.

Part 4
Orlena continued with a slight pout on her pretty face as she
was seated at the table, “I suppose you will have to rush off as usual
to that ridiculous ranch tomorrow. Or do you have to go today?” Without
giving her brother a chance to so much as agree or disagree, she went
on. “You never do stay long. I sometimes think you must not like me. I
don’t see what you find to interest you way out in the middle of
nowhere. Now, if you would only move to the city I’m sure you would
soon become a brother I could be proud of showing to my friends. Why
don’t you stay in town, Norman?” “You forget I’m married, Orlena.” The
reply was slightly cold although Norman was striving to keep his temper
under control. “Oh well, of course you can send for your wife. I think
it is about time I met my sister. Why didn’t you bring her with you? Is
she afraid of the city? I have heard all country girls are.” How fast
Orlena’s tongue could fly. Mrs. O’Connor, watching the brother and
sister, could see the growing set of Norman’s face and caught a glimpse
of the flash in his eyes which he tried to keep directed towards his
plate. As for Orlena, her pert mouth and the haughty toss of her head
made the housekeeper predict to herself that Orlena was setting herself
up for a clash of arms with her brother. She knew who would win in the
end, for Norman had the upper hand this time in that he was now
Orlena’s guardian, but who would triumph in this first skirmish was yet
to be seen. At last Norman broke in to his sister’s chatter. “Orlena,
suppose you eat and let me talk for a little while seeing as how I have
finished and you have scarcely begun.” A sniff came from across the
table. “How can I eat when I miss Grandmother,” whimpered Orlena. “You
don’t know what it is like to be left all alone to the mercy of
servants who think they can do what they please now. I have been
perfectly miserable. There was no one to talk to and--” another sniff
ended the complaint. “I am very sorry for the loss of Grandmother,”
began Norman, trying to speak kindly. “And I didn’t think you would
ever come,” whined the spoiled child across from him. “Why do you have
to go back to that horrid, old ranch and--” “Orlena! Be quiet.” The
stern voice starled her into silence, but only for a moment. “Oh, how
can you talk to me that way?” she wailed. “You don’t love me. No one
does!” and with her handkerchief to her eyes she rushed out of the room
slamming the door behind her. Not until the distant slam of Orlena’s
door was also heard, did Norman move. Then, after a deep sigh, he begn
to drum his fingers on the table, a habit he had when perplexed.
Looking over at Mrs. O’Connor, he gave a slight smile. “That didn’t go
so well. What do I do now?” Mrs. O’Connor wisely kept silent knowing
that no word of hers would be needed and Norman didn’t expect an
answer. Rising from the table, he slowly moved from the room with head
bowed. Had he spoken in haste things which he should repent of? Going
back over the few words he did speak, Norman didn’t think so. How was
he to talk to Orlena? It must be done, and the sooner things were clear
between them, the better it would be for both brother and sister.
Before going to Orlena’s room, Norman slipped into his own and spent
some time in prayer. Soon after, Norman knocked gently on his sister’s
door. “Who is it?” crossly demanded Orlena. “It is me, please open the
door, Sis.” “Go away, I don’t want to talk to you!” “But we need to
talk. Come on, Orlena,” was the patient reply, “either let me in or go
with me to another room were we can talk alone.” For a long minute all
was still. Norman wasn’t at all sure if Orlena would open the door or
not. “What if I don’t want to talk to you?” The question, though still
somewhat testy, held an element of wonder in it, as though Orlena
really wanted to know if her brother would let her have her own way or
not. “Then I’m sorry, for I must talk with you.” There was something in
Norman’s voice which seemed to compel compliance
though it was neither stern nor harsh. Slowly the door opened and
Orlena appeared with a pout. “Do you want to talk here or somewhere
else?” Norman asked gently. Orlena shrugged, then held open the door
into her little sitting room. It was only after they were both sitting,
Orlena curled up in a chair like a little kitten ready to spit and
scratch if its fur was rubbed the wrong way, and her brother in a chair
opposite, that Norman began. “I’ve been going over affairs with
Grandmother’s lawyer,” he began slowly, “and things are going to
change, drastically I’m afraid. For one, this house is going to be
closed. There is no need to keep it open and pay for the help needed to
run it when none of us will be here. Mr. Athey is going to see if he
can find a family to rent it until such a time as we might want it
again.” Pausing a moment to look at his sister, Norman was surprised to
find her seemingly indifferent to this news. Encouraged by this he
continued, waiting and bracing himself, however, for the explosion he
felt sure would come sometime, though uncertain which news would be the
match to light it. “You will be leaving with me, in two days, for the
ranch--” Orlena bounced from her chair, eyes flashing. The match had
been lit.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Meleah's Western - Part 38

Welcome to Western Wednesday!
I kept reminding myself last night that I had to post a Western this morning. And, I nearly forgot.:) But I remembered. Enjoy!

Part 38
When Jack entered the room some time later, moving on soft feet
to the bedside of his patient, Sally fairly held her breath. Ty hadn’t
stirred at all since she had come, was he --? She blinked her eyes
rapidly and then, as the tears refused to leave, drew her sleeve
quickly across her face clearing her vision for a few minutes at least.
Jack straightend up, “No change,” he whispered to the watchers. “I’ll
take a turn now, Joe.” He nodded to his brother. “And Miss Sally,” he
continued, “go back to bed and get some sleep. You’ll need your
strength for tomorrow if you are going to do any watching then.” Jack
added the last when he saw her beginning to shake her head at the
mention of leaving. “Come on,” Joe put in a little coaxing. “Jack will
wake you if there is the slightest change. If you don’t sleep now, how
are you going to keep up?” Feeling torn by conflicting emotions, Sally
looked first at one face and then another, lingering finally on Ty’s
pale one on the pillow. “If there is any change, please promise . . .”
she pleaded, her dark eyes on Jack’s face above her. “I promise.” With
a little sigh, Sally allowed Joe to help her to her feet and guide her
to her own door where he left her with a gentle pressure of the hand.
Meanwhile Carson was having his own struggle out under the stars.
Wrestling with his thoughts and his fully awakened conscience, he
tramped for hours over the fields in the silence and quietude of that
moonlit night. At last fully exhausted, he flung himself on his knees
behind the barn and prayed as he had not done for nearly a dozen years.
Pouring his whole soul out before his Lord, Carson wept and pleaded for
forgiveness, for strength to continue on, for life for Ty, and, with
tears coursing down his rough cheeks, he pleaded to find his Sunshine
once more before he died. As he knelt thus, unmindful of the time, a
gentle feeling of peace began to steal over him until at last he sank
down and lay quiet and still in the grass. The stars above looked like
tiny candle flames flickering faintly in a far off window. The moon
cast its silvery shimmer across nature. Carson gazed about with a new
wonder until he felt his eyelids begin to close. With great effort, he
roused himself. Back at the house, he made his way in and, finding a
blanket left on a chair for him, he rolled himself up and slept a deep,
dreamless sleep. The sun was shining brightly in the eastern sky and
all living things were still basking in its warm ray. Across the plains
half a dozen horsemen could be seen cantering along. Jim Fields, his
son Jed and three of their cow hands were following Bob Carson back
over the trail from yesterday. As they neared the bottom of the hill
where Carson had spied the smoke from the Fields’ chimney, he halted;
dismounting and dropping the reins, he cautiously made his way up the
hill, rifle in readiness for anything. For several minutes after he
reached the summit, he remained nearly motionless scarcely turning his
head as his quick, sharp eyes examined the woods stretching out before
him. There was no sign of danger. No voices were heard, no movement
observed. Slowly he stood to his full height. Nothing changed. All
remained as it had been. Beckoning the others, Carson waited until they
rode up and Jed handed over his mount’s reins. “I reckon if we were ta
split up, we could circle ‘round in both directions. It’d keep us all
from walkin’ inta an ambush too.” Heads nodded as all eyes took in the
lay of the land. Gesturing with his hand, Carson continued, “Right down
yonder, ‘bout where them pines are gowin’ is where I reckon the shot
come from. I aim ta look there first.” “I’ll go with you,” Jed
volunteered immediately. “Just where was Ty when he got shot?” queried
Mr. Fields. “See how them trees makes a U shape ‘round that bit a
grasslands?” When heads nodded he added, “Well, I reckon he might a
been ‘bout in the middle a that there U. Sally an’ I were still in the
trees behind him. Now I reckon we ought ta get movin’. Ya ready, Jed?” “Ready.” Carson and Jed rode off towards the left, circling to get
back in behind the trees somewhat before making their way through them.
Jim Fields, with one of his men, headed his horse for the U in the
middle while the other two cowhands moved to the right. No one spoke.
Each was listening and watching, alert for any possible danger. All
guns were held ready. Suddenly Jed pointed ahead into the trees. There
seemed to be something there. Swiftly Carson dismounted, handing the
reins this time to Jed instead of dropping them as he usually did.
“Wait here,” he whispered, moving forward with catlike tread. Soon he
beckoned and Jed rode forward and dismounted at the edge of the trees.
Leading the horses, the two advanced into the woods. All was still. Jed
watched in amazement as Carson, with no noise and scarcely seeming to
move any branches or grass, slipped along before him. Before long they
came to a small clearing with the charred remains of a fire to one side
and on the other a small path. Dropping down to examine the ground,
Carson touched the ashes. They were cold. But on probing a little
deeper he discovered warmth still existed. “Fire ain’t out all the way.
I reckon they left in a hurry.” “They?” Carson nodded. “I see two,
maybe three sets a tracks ‘round here.” He frowned in silent thought.
Jed, who had also been looking around gave a low exclamation, “Would
you look at this! I think it explains everything.”
Any questions?

Friday, May 6, 2011

Ranch - Part 3

Good Morning FFFs,
Here I am at another conference. This time in Springfield. Set up went well yesterday. We'll see how today goes. Going to go eat breakfast in just a few minutes. I hope you enjoy this part 3 of the Ranch story. And I still need a name for the ranch.
What would you like to read next Friday? Another Ranch or something else? Let me know. Enjoy!

Part 3

For a long time, Norman sat with the letter in his hand, staring
into space. So, his grandmother had realized what she had done to
Orlena, yet it was up to him and Jenelle to try and help her. He
wondered how hard it would be. After all, he hadn’t even seen his
sister for over a year, and the last time he saw her was only for two
days. What would she think of living on a ranch? A slight smile tugged
at the corners of his mouth as he tried to picture Orlena milking cows
or feeding chickens. At last he roused and began to make himself
presentable for table. He had no dinner jacket, only his best Sunday
clothes which his wife had so carefully packed for him. These he
donned, wishing she were here with him and wondering what she was
doing. These pleasant thoughts were interrupted by the dinner bell.
Again, as Norman passed down the hallway, he paused before his sister’s
door. Was she already at the table? Shrugging, he made his way down the
broad stairway and into the dining room. There he found Mrs. O’Connor.
“I hope you had a nice rest, Norman,” that good woman said. “You
weren’t wanting anything, were you?” “Everything was quite comfortable,
Mrs. O’Connor. Thank you. But,” he raised an eyebrow and looked
questioningly at the housekeeper, “is Orlena--?” “That I do not know.
She won’t answer my knocks on the door. I even told her you had
arrived, but as well I might have been talking to the china cabinet for
all the reply I got.” Norman’s brows drew together. Then, as one of the
servants entered, he addressed her. “Go up to Miss Orlena’s room,
please, and say her brother awaits her in the dining room.” The maid
dropped a curtsy and departed. Softly drumming his fingers on the back
of a chair, Norman waited. Would Orlena come? He rather doubted it. But
he would wait a little while and see. In a moment, the maid was back.
“Please sir, Miss Orlena asks that you excuse her tonight.” Norman
nodded, though he sighed to himself. “I don’t think this will be very
easy.” Aloud he said, “Then, Mrs. O’Connor, you will join me for
supper, won’t you? I’m afraid it would be too lonely to eat by myself.”
His smile was bright and Mrs. O’Connor was happy to accept. The meal,
full of talk, of news and reminiscences, was a pleasant affair and
helped dispel the feeling of oppression Norman always felt in his
grandmother’s stately mansion. Hardly had the meal been concluded, when
Mr. Athey was announced. Norman led the way to the library and shut the
door behind them. It was late when Mr. Athey departed, and Norman,
after seeing the lawyer to the door, made his way through the darkened
house to his room where a light had been left low. Closing the door and
leaving the light dim, he slowly prepared for rest. His mind was busy
with all he had heard and the decisions which must now be made. It felt
like months ago that he had left his home. Surely it couldn’t have been
that morning! At last, turning out the light, Norman dropped to his
knees beside the bed. There, after spending much earnest time in
prayer, he was filled with peace and, dropping wearily into bed, fell
instantly to sleep. “I did get a response out of Miss Orlena this
morning, Norman.” Mrs. O’Connor was bustling around the breakfast room
preparing for the morning meal while the grandson of her late mistress
looked on. “Oh? And what did my sister have to say?” “That she would be
down to breakfast with you.” Norman’s eyebrows raised in surprise.
Perhaps things wouldn’t be so hard after all. Could Orlena herself be
wanting to change? Norman found himself, for the first time since he
had arrived, looking forward to seeing his sister. At that moment, the
door opened, and Orlena entered. Though she was only eleven, Orlena
Mavrich somehow managed to give the impression that she was at least
sixteen by the way she carried herself and the fine, young lady styles
she wore. At boarding school she, like the other young ladies, had been
made to wear a uniform, but here in her grandmother’s house where she
was allowed
to do much as she liked, she dressed as she pleased. This morning her
dress of rich black silk with the rows and rows of plaiting, ribbons
and lace, as well as a slight train, gave her brother a start. Who was
this? Surely not his little sister! What could their grandmother have
been thinking to let this child wear such ridiculous clothes? If the
truth be known, Old Mrs. Mavrich would never have allowed such a get
up, but upon her death, Orlena gave orders that she must have a proper
mourning dress. None dared go against her wishes and thus the dress
came to be. Mrs. O’Connor watched Norman’s face as he gazed in
unconcealed astonishment. She saw his brows draw together and his mouth
slowly settle into a frown. In the past this brother and sister had
clashed nearly as often as they spoke, but always Mrs. Mavrich had been
there to somehow smooth things over. At least, to smooth things for her
beloved granddaughter. In vain Mrs. O’Connor had offered suggestions.
Now, however, there was no one for Orlena to fly to if her will was
crossed in any way, and the good housekeeper could only wait, wondering
what would happen. She didn’t have long to wait, for Orlena broke the
silence. “So, Norman, you have decided to come for a visit after
Grandmother is dead.” She gave a sniff and dabbed at her eyes with a
fine, lace-trimmed handkerchief. Swallowing back a retort he knew he
would regret, Norman forced himself to smile and say calmly, “I wish I
could have come at a more pleasant time, but ranch life wasn’t made for
frequent absences.”

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Meleah's Western - Part 37

Welcome to Western Wednesday!
This is the very first Western Wednesday of Rebekah's Reading Room. I hope you enjoy it. Do you think I should keep doing it?
And one more thing, don't expect me to do much talking before the story. I'm busy.:) Enjoy!

Part 37
“For, lo, the wicked bend their bow, they make ready their arrow
upon the string, that they may privily shoot at the upright in heart. .
. . The Lord is in his holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in heaven: his
eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men. . . .” Then the good
man bowed his head and prayed. Carson, never having been much of a
praying man himself, having gotten out of the habit when off trapping
on his own, now listened with great respect. This man knew who he was
talking to and seemed to expect an answer. He swallowed hard, suddenly
recalling his Aunt Kate as she used to pray with Sunshine in their old
cabin. From there his mind drifted back a few more years, and again he
seemed to hear his friend Jake as he prayed one day with his beloved
Ellen by his side. Another voice came to echo in his mind. A voice from
long past, a voice from his childhood. Even the tones were distinctly
heard, and the weight of his own father’s hand on his shoulder seemed
to be felt once again. His father was speaking to him, repeating words
from the Bible. It was all so clear, so real. “’The steps of a good man
are ordered by the Lord, and He delighteth in his way.’ Remember Bobby,
the only good men are those who place their trust and life in the hands
of the Lord Jesus Christ and let Him direct their paths. Wherever you
may go, never forget that you have given yourself to Him.” Carson’s
head dropped into his hands and he sat bowed with the remembrances
which that one heartfelt prayer had roused. “God help me, I did
forget,” his heart cried out. He knew it was no use to pretend
differently, for the gentle drawing of the Shepherd was strong in this
wandering sheep. Never had Carson intended to forget the only One who
had been his comfort when his mother and father were taken from him.
Nor the One who, when Aunt Kate and Sunshine were taken from him, had
guided him still, Somehow, however, he had forgotten. Not completely,
for the knowledge of that Someone had kept him safe in many a
temptation, yet he let days go by without a thought for the One he had
sworn allegiance to. It was all too much. Rising abruptly, he left the
house. He had to settle this thing alone with only himself and his God.
In the house, Sally continued to sit in the daze she had been in since
their arrival. Only when Mrs. Fields talked to her, did she seem to
rouse. “Come, Sally,” that good woman ordered gently, laying a hand on
Sally’s arm. “You must get some rest now. There is a bed in the room
right next to your brother’s. Things will look better in the morning.”
And so, with the Joe’s assistance, Sally was helped to her feet and led
from the room. How long she slept was uncertain. All was still and
quiet when she opened her eyes. Again she seemed to see Ty slumping in
the saddle, saw the blood staining his shirt and the petticoat beneath
her hands, saw the well loved face so white and still. With trembling
limbs, she rose. Was Ty still alive? Had he died while she slept? She
should never have left him! “Ty,” she moaned, “I can’t lose you too!”
Choking back the sobs that nearly strangled her, Sally crept from her
room into the large and equally dark one beyond. Pausing a moment to
listen at the door where her brother lay, she placed one hand over her
wildly beating heart trying to quiet it. She felt her locket. Clutching
it tightly, she drew a long, deep breath. Not a sound could she hear.
All about her was quietness. Slowly she pushed open the door and
stepped into the dimly lit room. As the door opened, Joe, who had been
keeping watch for the last hour, turned. The sight of Sally standing in
the doorway with her long, dark hair hanging loosely about her pale,
anxious face and over her shoulders, one hand clenched over her heart
and her eyes filled with unshed tears, was a sight the young man never
forgot. Silently he stood, but before he could take a step towards her,
Sally had staggered across the room and dropped on her knees beside the
bed. One hand was laid on the motionless hand of Ty while her face was buried
in the bedclothes. The silent shaking of her shoulders gave the only
indication of the anguish within her. Tenderhearted and full of
sympathy, Joe watched the girl without stirring, until a muffled sob
reached his ears. Then he quietly moved to her side and, kneeling
beside her, placed one hand on her arm, whispering, “It will be all
right. Jack isn’t giving up and everyone is praying.” The only answer
was a fresh burst of tears. Compassionately, Joe stayed by Sally,
alternately watching Ty’s face and whispering comforting words to the
distressed girl beside him. The gentle, calm voice gradually soothed
Sally and her sobs grew less intense. After a little while, the hand
which had clutched her locket loosened and stole over to timidly touch
the hand still on her arm. “Do you want to come sit and wait until Jack
comes?” were the softly whispered words Sally heard as she drew a long,
shuddering breath and grew still. When she nodded faintly, she felt
herself being lifted up and half carried to the chair. Swallowing hard
and blinking away the tears, Sally looked at the face of her brother as
it lay still upon the pillow in the dim room, watched, and waited, and
prayed. Stationing himself nearly behind her chair, Joe stood also
watching, waiting and praying as the minutes slowly ticked by.