it is, Wednesday once again. At least this time it actually feels like
it really might be Wednesday. Probably because I got the last Wednesday
post done on Sunday. I have been writing since we got home. You Western
fans will be delighted to know that I'm working on Part 50 right now so
the Western Wednesdays will continue. I'm working on trying to figure
out how I'm going to publish this book. (I know, I still have to finish
writing it first.) I'm thinking of trying a new publisher this time.
“Sally,” Ty’s voice was low and feeble. He looked over at her as she
sat beside his bed.
Gently she placed a finger over his lips. “Hush, Ty. You know Jack said
you were to sleep an’ not talk now. Rest.” She spoke softly but there
was a hint of stubbornness in her tone which Ty knew.
He gave a slight smile and his eyes closed once more.
A shadow fell across the bed and Sally looked up. Jack stood on the
other side of the bed. His expression was a pleased one and after
placing soft fingers on Ty’s wrist, he turned towards the door,
motioning Sally to follow.
She did so with a light heart. Ty was getting better. The fever and
loss of blood from his shoulder wound had left him weak, but each day
he seemed to gain more strength. The wound was healing nicely and Jack
said only yesterday that his arm would be as good as ever in a few
Out of the sick room, Jack turned to Sally and instructed, “Go out and
get some fresh air. Ty should sleep for a while and I’ll be here if he
Sally nodded. Only a week or so ago, she would have stubbornly insisted
on staying by Ty, but now all was right. “Where is everyone?” she
asked, pausing before the door.
“Well, I think Carson and Jed are out with Pa looking for some stray
cattle. Ma is out in the garden and Joe is around somewhere. More than
likely, he’s out with the horses.”
The warm summer sun shone brightly out from a deep blue sky dotted here
and there with cotton ball clouds. Loosening her hair, Sally let the
breeze blow it about her face while she drew in deep breaths of the
fresh air. Slowly she meandered across the yard towards the barn and
garden, stopping now and then to look at and admire a flower blooming
in the grass. A bright butterfly flitted by and Sally paused to watch
it; the delicate little insect flying from flower to flower, enjoying
the sunshine, fluttering its colorful wings and mounting up, up into
the vast expanse of sky above, it disappeared at last from view. Sally,
who had watched until it vanished, lost in her own thoughts, was
brought back to earth by a voice.
“Don’t trip, Sally,” it warned.
Sally looked down and smiling, walked around the pile of stones. Mrs.
Fields was watching her from the garden.
“Did you come out to get some sunshine?” she asked pleasantly.
“Yes,” Sally replied simply, adding, “Oh, let me help. I ain’t had--”
she broke off quickly, blushing and then started again. “I never had a
garden. Not a real one. Pa, Ty an’ I lived in the woods an’ there jest
weren’t no-- I mean there wasn’t any place for one.” In the weeks since
Carson, Ty and Sally had dropped in on the Fields so unexpectedly,
Sally had noticed how differently she talked from the others. Never
before had she had the daily influence of a woman like Mrs. Jim Fields.
Slowly, with persistence and much encouragement, Sally was beginning to
learn those fine arts which only a true woman can teach. So subtly were
the changes coming to her that she scarcely noticed them except in her
speech which she was quite conscious of.
In the weeks that followed Ty’s start on the road to recovery, while
Sally was learning from Mrs. Fields, Carson was learning about cattle
ranching. Always one to try his hand at something new, Mr. Fields soon
found him a valuable assistant especially in tracking down missing
cattle. In this Carson was an expert. Having trapped nearly all his
life, learning to read sign from the Indians and with a keen eye and
quick memory for the tiniest details, he found tracking cattle to be
much like tracking anything else. Jed Fields, fascinated by Carson’s
skill, went with him everywhere and learned much from the older man.
These two, Carson and Sally, each busy in their own way, were content
to stay on where they were for months if need be. Sally had the
companionship she had unknowingly craved, and Carson was out in the
great world, his world of nature, always occupied. It was Ty who was
growing restless. The idleness which his illness had forced upon him
was, to him, a great affliction. Never had Ty remembered being so weak.
He fretted at staying in bed.
He wanted to be up, to ride out with Carson, to stroll across the
fields with Sally and have one of their long talks such as they used to
have when they were growing up. Now he found that he couldn’t stay
awake and talk without growing tired. Sometimes he felt as though he
wasn’t improving and would lie moody and silent, becoming gruff and
even impatient with his sister or with anyone who happened to be with
him at the time.
Even if Ty could see no improvement, Jack could and was encouraged by
his patient’s rapid improvement, for Ty’s strong constitution stood him
in good stead now as he struggled to regain his former strength. As he
grew stronger, Jack first allowed him to sit up, then, with help from
Joe, Carson or Jed and carefully watched by Sally and Mrs. Fields, he
was helped to a chair in the large room beyond or on warm sunny days,
he was even allowed outside. Those days were of great pleasure to Ty,
but often were followed by days of restless fretfulness.
After one such day, when Ty was lying moody in bed, Jack came and sat
down beside him.
“Ty,” Jack began quietly, “you are not helping yourself in the least by
this fretfulness. It wastes your energy and you wear yourself out. If
you want to regain your health quickly, stop fighting against what you
can’t change. You are improving, but these moods of yours are setting