I hope you are enjoying the wonderful delight of the Christmas season as we remember and celebrate the most important birthday of all!
This week has been busy. On Sunday there was a family visiting church and they had a 2 1/2 month old baby girl! Almost all of us girls got to hold and cuddle that sweet little doll. It has been so long since I've held a baby girl. That made my day extra special. :) I don't remember what we did on Monday and Tuesday, but on Wednesday we had Cookie Day! And, not only that but it was also Dad's birthday. That made things even busier. Yesterday Mom, S and I went shopping (grocery shopping not Christmas). It seemed like a pretty ordinary day until . . .
I got on my Kindle account to make my book The Unexpected Request available for Kindle's library and decided to check and see if by some chance I had sold any books. I HAD! I sold a book on Kindle!!! Then I checked my account on Createspace and I had sold another book! And I had sold one at our booth at Connie's!!!!!! Talk about exciting! I can't wait to get "Home Fires of the Great War" published with Createspace and make it available on Kindle and I want to publish a book of short stories and one of Christmas stories and . . . You get the picture I'm sure. :) I didn't know it was such fun to publish books. :)
I wanted to thank you all for your comments. :) I've loved reading them. To answer Anonymous, no it is not 1941. If I have done my math right (I'm terrible at math by the way) the year is 1939. If it were 1941 you'd be reading the 3rd book of the Home Fires series. I'm looking forward to writing that one. But I guess I should finish the 2nd book first. :)
And, since you didn't seem to like where I left you last Friday, here is part 2.
The Worst and Best Christmas
Last week . . .Ria could only nod, her lips pressed tightly together to keep back a cry of pain.
“Where does it hurt, Ria?” Ed asked quietly while Johnny and Chris gathered around.
“My side,” Ria whimpered holding both hands over the place and catching her breath as the sharp pain once more shot through her.
“Johnny,” Ed ordered quickly, “run home, tell Mom and Dad and get the car. It will be faster than carrying her. We’ll start back the way we came. Now move!” That last was unnecessary for already Johnny was half a block away.
By now the tears were starting to trickle down Ria’s pale cheeks though she tried to blink them back. All she wanted was her mom and dad and her own bed.
Stooping, Ed picked his sister up in his arms and set off down the street, Jimmy and Chris following. Ria had buried her face in Ed’s coat collar, clinging to him with one hand while keeping the other pressed to her side.
Hardly had the group left shopping district when a car pulled up beside them and a voice called out, “What happened? Ria hurt?”
It was young Dr. Earl Friesen.
“Ria has a sharp pain in her side,” Jimmy explained. “Johnny went to get the car, but we didn’t want to wait that long.”
“Well, pile in all of you. This car will be faster than Johnny even if he’s one of the fastest runners I’ve seen.” No time was wasted obeying those orders and soon the car was in motion. “We’ll pick up Johnny if we see him,” Dr. Earl said.
This they did only two blocks from the Mitchell home.
Ria, still with face hidden, was carried into the house in her brother’s strong arms and upstairs to her room, her mother and father following with the doctor.
It was a long wait to the four lads downstairs before the sound of feet on the stairs was heard. Into the living room came Mr. Mitchell carrying Ria wrapped in a blanket and followed by Mrs. Mitchell and Dr. Earl. No one spoke though the eyes of each of the boys held question marks. As she pulled on her coat, Mrs. Mitchell looked at her boys.
“Ria has appendicitis. We’re going to the hospital. We’ll let you know as soon as we can how things are. Pray, boys.”
“We will, Mom,” Ed assured her with a smile though his manner was subdued.
It was hours later when Ria awoke from the anesthetic feeling confused. She saw her parents standing nearby talking to someone with a white jacket on. “Mom,” she whispered.
Mrs. Mitchell turned swiftly and came over to the bed. “I’m right here, Ria.” She spoke softly, stroking Ria’s dark hair back from her face. “How are you feeling?”
Restlessly, Ria turned her head, the white walls of the hospital room looked cold and bleak. “I want to go home,” she whimpered.
“Soon, Sweetheart,” her father said, coming over to hold her hand. “Dr. Friesen wants to keep you here a little longer.”
Wearily, Ria closed her eyes but opened them as she heard her mother exclaim, “My cookies! Oh, Mitch, I forgot about the cookies in the oven. They’ll be burnt or they could have caught the house on fire!”
Mr. Mitchell laughed softly. “Emma, I don’t think those cookies got burnt. But,” he added with a grin, “I wouldn’t expect to have any left. After all, we did leave four boys at home with them and no instructions not to eat them.”
Emma Mitchell sighed. “Those boys,” was all she said, but she shook her head and sat down next to Ria’s bed. Her husband gave her a kiss. “I’ll go check on things.” Then, bending over the bed to leave a light kiss on Ria’s pale face, he told her, “You get some rest and I’ll be back later, okay?”
Ria mumbled something that was supposed to be words, and the next moment was sleeping.
When she next awoke, the room was dim and her mother was gone. For a few minutes, Ria couldn’t remember where she was, then it came to her. She was in the hospital and it was Christmas Eve! There was a dull ache in her side not like the sharp pain of before but still, it wasn’t pleasant. She didn’t like it. She didn’t like the ache, the stark white of the room, and most of all she didn’t like being away from home on Christmas Eve. “I’ll just go home,” she spoke the words half aloud as she tried to sit up in bed, but to her surprise the room seemed to spin around and she felt as though she hadn’t even the strength to lift one of the kittens at Grandma Foster’s. Tears came to her eyes, but before she had a chance to start crying, the door to her room opened.
“I see you’ve decided to wake up after all,” the cheery voice of Dr. Friesen greeted her. He turned on a light and came over to the bed. “And how are you feeling?” he asked.
“I want to go home.”
“I think we can arrange that in a day or two,” he smiled at her.
“I don’t want it in a day or two, I want it now!” Dr. Earl had been friends with Ria’s family for several years, even before he left for medical school. Over the last few months he had spent quite a bit of time with Evie Foster, Mrs. Mitchell’s youngest sister, and some of the gang were wondering how long it would be before they had a new uncle, so Ria felt at ease with him.
“Well,” he replied with another smile, “I’m afraid I can’t let you go tonight. Why, young lady, I couldn’t take the risk of letting you be run over by Santa’s reindeer.” If Earl’s plan had been to bring a smile, even a small one, to the face of his patient, he succeeded.
The faintest trace of a smile twitched at Ria’s lips. The first one since earlier that morning. She knew Earl was teasing, yet she could also see that she would have to stay there, in the hospital that night. Blinking back the tears which filled her eyes, Ria turned her head away, biting her lip.
The little room was quiet for a minute, then Dr. Friesen spoke softly, “I’ll be back to check on you in a little while, Ria,” and he gave her hand a gentle squeeze. He was almost at the door when Ria stopped him.
He paused and looked back.
“If I do everything I’m supposed to tonight, can I go to Grandma’s tomorrow, just for the Christmas party? Please,” she begged.
Is this a better place to stop?
It will be continued next Friday.