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Friday, October 26, 2012

My Best Thanksgiving - Part 1

Good Morning FFFs,
There sure was a change in the weather yesterday! We went from having the windows open and it being breezy and near 70 degrees to shutting windows because it was raining, windy and had dropped to the 50s before noon. But I love the chilliness of this weather! I was tired of wearing short sleeves. I wanted long sleeves, sweaters, knee socks and slippers. :)

I had quite a week. In some ways it was more relaxing than I thought it would be, but it is still going by too quickly. I did a lot of finishing. :) I finished a table runner and napkin set I was making for someone. Sorry, it is hard to see the hand quilting in this picture.

My nephew had his 3rd birthday party on Sunday and since he LOVES trains, he had a train party. :)

I also graded 22 papers for someone, checked several of my own students' papers, and was going to have my last writing class for this year, but was asked to postpone it until after AGC. I didn't mind. That gave me a little more time to get something else done that has been on my list of "to do" things for a long time. I finally got my driver's license. Yeah, yeah, I know. I could have had it a LONG time ago. Over a dozen years ago if I had wanted. The thing was, however, I wasn't interested. :) Not really. Not until a few years ago when I wished I had it. And since everyone in the family was so busy, it took me a while to get enough practice in. It was my grandpa who really got me going. But now that's done!

I've been writing in the evenings. I actually started on a Christmas story. I think you'll enjoy it once I get it finished.  But first things first. You have a Thanksgiving story that comes first. Well, they aren't connected, but since Thanksgiving comes before Christmas, I thought you should start with that story.

On another note, next week will be the start of American Government Camp (AGC)! So, I'll be very busy from Tuesday until Wednesday, Nov. 7th. But I'm going to get the next part of the Thanksgiving story scheduled to post so you can read it even if I'm running around doing lit-drops, sign waving and being political. :) And if you think of it, we'd appreciate prayers. There are about 36 students
And now, enjoy the first part of

My Best Thanksgiving

    Isn’t it strange how some events remain so clearly fixed in your memory that it seems as though they happened yesterday or last week when in actuality they took place ten, twenty or even forty years ago? I have a few memories that are like that but the one I remember the most was the Thanksgiving I was eleven.
    It began like most of our vacation trips did, with a lot of confusion, noise and busyness. But what else would you expect with a family of nine? Dad had wanted to leave by seven-thirty Monday morning, but Sunday night, even though we stayed up really late trying to get things ready, it didn’t look like it would work. We were all grumpy and needed to go to bed. The usual bed time for the younger three was eight but they were still up at ten! Not even the older three stay up that late usually. Finally Dad gave a whistle and we all hurried into the kitchen.
    “All right, kids,” he said. “This is not working. You are all tired and grumpy. Does everyone have their personal things packed? Things to do in the car and anything you wanted to take along to play with?”
    Emmy, Vicki and Jason nodded their heads. I did too. That had been the easy stuff to pack. I packed a few books to read, my crossword book, camera, Bible and a blank notebook. You never know when a piece of notebook paper will come in handy. I had also grabbed a few pens and pencils.
    Dad was talking again. “Good! Jason, Emmy and Vicki, get your clothes on for tomorrow and go to bed. I want you three in bed in five minutes. Understand?”
    “Yes, Daddy,” they chorused and raced off.
    “Carol, Ginger,” Dad turned to my oldest sisters, “are your suitcases packed?”
    “Almost,” Carol replied. “We just have to add the last few things in the morning.”
    “And I have what I’m taking packed, too, Dad,” Ginger added.
    “Good.” Glancing about the room with a slight frown, Dad next addressed Lee and me. Lee’s the oldest of us kids. He was seventeen. Carol was next at fifteen and Ginger was fourteen. As I said before, I was eleven. My name is Reagan, but I’m called Ray most of the time. I was the middle child and didn’t have anyone close to me in age. The younger three were eight, seven and six, with Emmy the oldest and Jason the last. I had a hard time figuring out just where I fit in, for I wasn’t often considered one of the older ones but the younger ones were a bit too young to be good companions. It didn’t usually bother me much. I guess I was used to being a loner. So when Dad said my name along with Lee’s, I was surprised!
    “I want you boys to get the other suitcases. Leave the girls’, and bring the others down here to the kitchen table.”
    “Even if they aren’t packed yet?” Lee asked.
    “Especially if they aren’t packed.”
    We hurried off. I dashed upstairs and grabbed mine first. It wasn’t packed at all because I’d no sooner start to work on it when I’d get called to do something else. I snatched up Jason’s as well, then hurried down the stairs passing Lee on the way. In no time flat we had all of them on the table in a line. The older girls and Mom kept theirs.
    I’m not very good at packing suitcases because I always forget something. But this way was easy. Dad would tell us how many of what thing to get and Lee and I would dash off and bring them back and just dump them in the right suitcase. Once we had everything, Dad left us to pack them while he went to tell the younger three good-night.
    After a little while, just as we were zipping up the last suitcase, Mom came out of her room looking really tired.
    “Sit down and rest, Mom,” Lee said, pulling out a chair.
    Mom sat down but shook her head. “I don’t have time to rest. There is still so much to do. We haven’t even started on the kitchen stuff, sleeping bags, blankets, coats—” she sighed. Glancing at the table with its row of suitcases she asked, “What’s that?”
    “All the suitcases except yours and the older girls’,” I told her. “Dad had us pack them.”
    I was wondering what we were supposed to do next, but Dad came in then and ended any wondering.
    “Janet,” he said to Mom, “I just sent Carol and Ginger to bed. They do better early in the morning and they can finish their things then. The younger three are in bed and that is where you are going now.”
    Mom snorted. “Not if you still want to leave by seven-thirty.”
    Dad grinned. There seemed to be nothing he liked better than a challenge like that. “You just wait and see. I’ve got the two helpers I need and you are going to bed.” He pulled her out of the chair, put an arm around her and kissed her nose. “Ray, go to the garage and get out sleeping bags for each of us. Lee, bring the coolers in and start packing the food box.”
    That was the start of it. Mom did go to bed and just Dad, Lee and I were up. I didn’t realize how much it took for us to go on a two week vacation nor how quickly we could get things ready when the younger three were in bed. It was eleven-thirty when Dad glanced around the front room. There were stacks and piles everywhere, but we knew exactly what was in each pile and could load it quickly in the morning.
    “Good work, Sons. Thanks,” Dad said before sending us to bed. We would load the trailer in the morning.

    Lee’s alarm was going off when I woke up. It was four-thirty. I didn’t really want to get up since I’d gone to bed so late, but knowing I could sleep in the van later, I managed to crawl out of bed, blinking as Lee switched on the light. The three of us boys shared a room, but Jason is such a heavy sleeper that we could turn lights on and even talk and he wouldn’t wake up until around seven each morning.

To be continued next week.
Any thoughts so far?

Friday, October 19, 2012

Dr. Morgan - Part 7

Good Morning FFFs!
After the wind yesterday and last night, things look pretty calm this morning. The sun is just peeking above the horizon, the sky is growing lighter and the clouds, scattered about the sky and lining the east are darker. I hear the wind chimes and see the tops of the trees rustle. We still have some which have not lost all their leaves.
After last week's craziness, this week was much more relaxing. I read a little as well as other things. This was the week of babysitting so I haven't gotten any writing done.
We babysat the kiddos on Monday evening. Doodle Bug loves to be right in the middle of all the action and he jabbers away. He doesn't like to say one syllable words like "red" or "dog" but he'll say two syllable words like "purple," "happy," "apple," and things like that.
Wednesday afternoon a friend called to see if we'd watch her kids so she could surprise her husband and go out on a date with him. We said sure. Sweet-pea and J-J were so excited to come over and play and eat supper at our "toy house." (For some reason Sweet-pea thinks any place she sees us, home, church, family camp, is our house. And since we have toys at our house she calls it our "Toy House.") Sweetheart didn't really care if she was here or not being only 7 months old. But we had cheerios. She got excited about that. :)
Yesterday afternoon we headed over to the N house to watch their kids. Ended up getting home about 7:50.
On Saturday I got to go sign waving for the first time this year! It was such fun! Now I can't wait until AGC!!! And tomorrow we get to help with the Maple Leaf Parade and then do more sign waving! :) Yay!

I have wanted to write, but haven't been able to figure out what to write. Should I start on a Christmas story? Should I try for an other short story? Should I write a longer story? Work on Dr. Morgan or Triple Creek Ranch? You see, it's difficult to decide. There are so many things I want to write that sometimes it is really hard to decide which one to choose.

I hope you like this next part of Dr. Morgan. Next week I'll be starting the Thanksgiving story I wrote that ended up being more than 5,000 words long. :P I was going to post a poem this week since it has been so long since I've posted one, but since we babysat last night and Wednesday night and I read on Tuesday night and babysat on Monday night, I didn't get one written. Oh well.

Part 7

    Someone turned and a hand was placed on her wrist, but no one said a word. Moving her eyes slowly about, she discovered two other persons in the room as well. One was dressed in white while the other was wearing browns. Bewildered, she looked back at the face above her and asked weakly, “Who are you?”
    Dr. Morgan, his keen eyes taking in every look, every movement of his patient, replied quietly, “I’m Dr. Justin Morgan. What is your name?”
    “Amy,” came the slow reply while the girl’s eyes drifted to the half closed blinds at the window.
    Quietly watching and waiting, Dr. Morgan soon realized the girl was still too weak and tired to be able to think much. Except for her eyes taking in the room with its silent occupants, she didn’t move, not even her head. “Amy,” the name was soft. “Swallow this for me, please.”
    Slowly the large, dark eyes focused themselves on Dr. Morgan’s face and then moved to the spoon he was holding, but she made no movement. It seemed too much of an effort to even open her mouth. The four words she had spoken had taken all of her strength. Lying there limp, only her eyes moved and it was an effort to keep them open.
    Justin gently raised her head and held the spoon to her lips. “Come on,” he coaxed. “That’s right,” as the lips parted almost of themselves and the liquid slipped in. “Now swallow it, Amy.”
    With great effort the eyes moved to the face above her and met Dr. Morgan’s blue ones.
    “Swallow,” his voice was quiet but compelling and as though just comprehending what he said, she obeyed. Then her eyes closed as her head was laid back on the snow white pillow, and she slept.

    All that day and the next Amy was listless, asked no more questions and only ate or drank when told to. She slept a great deal; real sleep this time, restful, strength renewing sleep. Dr. Morgan didn’t push her to talk, he knew that would come later as her strength returned.
    Finally on the third day after the fever left Amy was watching the door when Dr. Morgan entered her room. Her expression was half frightened and half bewildered. No one else was there.
    “What is it, Amy?” Dr. Morgan asked quietly.
    “Did I--” she hesitated. “I mean when someone found me were there two . . .” her lip quivered and her eyes pleaded for help.
    “There were two little ones, and they are just fine.”
    Sighing as though a load had been rolled from her shoulders, Amy turned her eyes to the window. “I knew I had them with me, but I don’t remember being found or what happened to them.” Turning back she asked, “Where are they?”
    Justin smiled, “Don’t worry about them, they are safe and well. My parents and brother and sister are taking care of them.” Justin sat down beside the bed wondering if now would be a good time to find out more of who his patient was. He didn’t have to ask, for Amy, assured that the two children were safe, had to talk.
    “How did I get here? The last thing I remember was seeing a light and hoping I could get the children down to it.”
    “You did make it. It was to my family’s house and our dog found you.”
    “We had been so long in the mountains. I know I got the children out of something and started walking, but I don’t know what it was.” Her face was puzzled. “I keep trying to remember, and I can’t.” She had begun twisting the top of the sheet between her fingers.
    “Don’t try,” Dr. Morgan advised. “It will probably all come back to you before long, but don’t try to hurry it.”
    There was a few minutes of quiet. Amy lay staring at the wall and Dr. Morgan watched her. At last he spoke. His voice was quiet and calm.
    “Amy, are you the children’s mother?”
    Turning startled eyes to the doctor’s face, she gasped, “Oh, no! I’m not their mother!”
    “There’s no need to get excited, Amy,” Justin assured her. “When you came you only told us your first names, so we have wondered.”
    “I’m Amy Jones and they are . . . they . . . I don’t know!” Her voice rose, her hands twisted the sheet again. “Doctor, I don’t know who they are!”
    “Shh.” Dr. Morgan soothed, chiding himself for getting her excited. “You are tired. It is hard to remember things when one is tired. Now no more talking,” he said as Amy’s lips parted. “I want you to drink this and then go to sleep. You have talked quite enough for now.”
    Amy slowly settled back after swallowing the drink she had been given. “Doctor-”
    “Hush, I want you to rest now.” Dr. Morgan closed the window shades leaving the room cool and dim.
    But Amy had to know one thing. “Just their names, please!” She pleaded.
    “Danny and Jenny. Now no more talking.” He moved to the door but paused with it half open to watch the girl in the bed a moment.
    “Poor girl,” he sighed to himself. “I wonder how long it will be before she remembers. She had to get the children out of ‘something’. I wonder what. A cabin? A car? Why did they have to get out?” Shaking his head, he made his way down to his office still pondering what she had said.

    “Amy Jones. That’s all I’ve got, Dad.” There was a pause and Justin leaned his head on his hand. “How are you supposed to find the right Amy Jones? . . . No idea. . . . Nope. She doesn’t remember what she had to get the children out of but it was in the mountains. . . . Yeah, that’s what I was wondering. . . . Several days at least, I’m guessing.”

Questions?
Comments?
What would you be thinking if you were Dr. Morgan?

Friday, October 12, 2012

At the Lighthouse - Part 2

Good Morning FFFs,
It is a rainy morning here. Still dark outside, and I can hear the patter of rain on the skylight. Now and again the sky lights up with a flash of lightning and the distant rumble of thunder rolls across the heavens. The perfect kind of day to curl up with a good book and read for hours . . . But, I can't do that today. I don't have time.

Let me see, where has this week gone? Or at least what has it been filled with? You want to know?
Friday- We came home from my grandparents and got to work. We had to get everything together for the Farm Girl Fest that started the next day. We took a friend and went to sent up our tents that evening.
Saturday- Spent it all day out at Red Oak 2 for the first day of the festival. It wasn't too cold in the morning, but later the wind picked up and we froze! It was cloudy all day, but we were very thankful it didn't rain. It took a couple hours to thaw out after we got home.
On Sunday we had church out at Red Oak 2 and then were there until almost 6:00. That day was sunny and beautiful! I ended up selling 6 of my books and gave my contact info to a few people.
Monday came and there were piles of things all over the house so I stayed busy cleaning up, putting away, trying to get some things done and all that stuff.
Tuesday- I corrected papers for writing classes, then we babysat Pickle Puss, Goof Ball, Funny Boy and Doodle Bug all afternoon until after supper.
Wednesday- Writing Class Wednesdays are always busy. I had to make sure I was ready for the three classes and then I graded some papers for someone else. I thought the classes went pretty well even if I had to keep reminded my boys to "stay focused" on what we were doing.
Yesterday- We went to Connie's to check our booth, then to JoAnns. I graded papers, checked essays, figured out a quilt, finished writing and checking a story and was tired when I went to bed. :)

So there you have my week. And I didn't even mention all those little extra things that come up that make life even busier.
I've been having a rough time writing. It's not that I don't want to write, and I have gotten several evening of writing in, but I can't seem to think as clearly and kept having to delete and re-write. Perhaps it is because there is just so much going on. And AGC is in less than three weeks!

Here is the end of this short story. Thanks for leaving a comment, Anott.

Part -2

    “Come to the house now and see Father,” Leigh said at last after the laugh had subsided. “He will be delighted to see you again.” And she led the way across the sandy shore towards the lighthouse.

    Great was Mr. Sullivan’s astonishment when he was awakened and saw his only son standing before him. For several minutes he could only hold on to him and whisper, “Marshall, my son, my son.”
    “I’m home now, Father.”
    “But what about college?”
    The story of the unmailed letters was repeated and then the three reunited Sullivans fell to talking.
    It was growing late when suddenly Mr. Sullivan started up in his chair. “The light. I must go light it now.”
    Marshall rose at once saying, “No, Father, let me. Please, it will be like old times. Leigh can go with me to make sure I still remember how.” And, without giving his father time to object or protest, Marshall started for the stairs calling behind him just as he used to do when a boy, “I’ll race you to the top, Sis!”
    It wasn’t until the lights were lit and the brother and sister were standing on the balcony below the light, watching its beam flash far out to sea, that Marshall spoke his thoughts. “Father doesn’t look very well, Leigh. What’s wrong with him?”
    Leigh didn’t answer right away and her brother turned to look at her. “Has Dr. Armstrong seen him yet?”
    Leigh shook her head. “No, Papa won’t let me call him. I think he’s overworked and tired. He needs to get away from everything for a while and rest.”
    For a moment Marshall looked thoughtful, then he spoke. “Invite him for supper on Tuesday.”
    “Papa?”
    Marshall snorted, “Dr. Armstrong. I’d like to see him again. I’ll have to make sure I see all my old acquaintances, you know.” He smiled, and Leigh gave an answering smile in return. It was good to have Marshall home.

    Marshall hardly gave his father time to do anything other than relax in his chair, for he took complete charge of the light, laughing when his father protested and running up and down the steps declaring that it was keeping him in shape. Leigh watched with delight, for she saw that with Marshall home the two of them could run the light. Then she would grow grave. If only they could persuade their father to take a vacation.
    When Tuesday came, Marshall casually remarked at the breakfast table that he would like to see Dr. Armstrong again and Leigh said she would invite him to supper if that was all right. Mr. Sullivan nodded. Dr. Armstrong was a good friend and he would enjoy a chat with him himself.
    Supper was a pleasant affair with Marshall telling about life at college, and afterwards Mr. Sullivan and Dr. Armstrong settled themselves in armchairs in the living room while Marshall tended the light and Leigh washed the dishes. As soon as the light was lit, Marshall joined his sister in the kitchen remarking, “It looks like a storm is blowing in.”
    Leigh sighed, “Did you mention it to Papa?”
    “No.”
    “Well, if it comes Ted and Henry will be over.”
    Marshall stopped drying the plate in his hand and looked at Leigh with puzzled eyes. “The Larson boys?” he asked. “Why?”
    “All the men around here have been taking turns coming over when it storms, to help whenever they are needed, because Papa just can’t do it all anymore,” Leigh explained.
    “Well, I’m home now,” Marshall declared, “and this is my lighthouse.”
    His sister didn’t reply.

    There was a storm and, as Leigh had predicted, Ted and Henry came over. Both were glad to see Marshall again and left most of the work in his capable hands. Mr. Sullivan tried to help, but he tired so quickly that Dr. Armstrong, who had been there when the storm broke, insisted that he let the boys take care of things.

    “Marshall, Papa must have a rest,” Leigh repeated as the two of them strolled along the sandy shore. “Even Dr. Armstrong agrees with me.”
    “I know,” Marshall agreed. “You don’t have to convince me, it’s Father. Did you write Kathryn?”
    Leigh nodded. “I hope I hear from her soon. A few more such storms as we’ve had will send Papa to bed for a long time I’m afraid.”
    The brother and sister walked on in silence for several minutes before Leigh spoke once more. “Marshall.”
    “Hmm.”
    “If I ask you a question, will you give me an honest answer?” She had stopped and stood looking up into her younger brother’s eyes.
    “Of course I will,” he replied, wondering what was coming.
    “Do you want to spend the rest of your life living at a lighthouse and keeping the lights burning?”
    Marshall’s voice was quiet but firm when he answered, “Yes, Leigh, I do.”
    Smiling as though a weight had been lifted from her shoulders, Leigh said, “That is all I wanted to hear.”

    The letter came the next afternoon and even with its plea for a visit, it took Leigh’s passionate appeal to rest for her sake and Marshall’s keen logic and firm assurance that the light would shine every night before Mr. Sullivan was convinced that a trip away from his life at the lighthouse was for the best. But, at last all was settled.

    Standing at the door of the lighthouse, Leigh and Marshall waved good bye to their father as Dr. Armstrong drove him away to the train station. Leigh sighed, she would miss her father, but he must get a rest. Besides, she thought, glancing at her tall brother, Marshall was home and they would together, take care of the light until the rightful lighthouse keeper returned in health.

The End
What did you think of it?

Friday, October 5, 2012

At the Lighthouse - Part 1

Good Morning Friday Fiction Fans,
I won't write much extra this morning as I'm at my grandparents. We are heading home this morning having been here since Monday. It has been busy, but fun. I even got to relax and work a logic puzzle. :) Not much writing though. I'm working on a Thanksgiving story, but haven't gotten very far with it.

Since Dr. Morgan only gets harder to wait for the next part, I thought I'd go ahead and post a short story I wrote for a friend some time ago. It isn't one of my favorite stories, but I don't dislike it either. ;) Hopefully I can write more next week! Life is busy, really busy right now. This evening we have to set up our "tents" for Farm Girl Fest. It is Sat. and Sun. It should be lots of fun even if it is supposed to be cold. I'm ready for cold weather. I'm hoping for snow this winter. :D

And I'm off to other things. Enjoy!


At the Lighthouse
by
Rebekah M.

    Mr. Sullivan sighed and put one rough hand on his back after he shut the door of the stove which he had just lit while he grasped the back of a chair with the other. Straightening up was more of an effort than it used to be and he sank gratefully down in a chair before the stove, as the fresh logs caught fire with a sputter, and closed his tired eyes.
    The smell of fresh, hot coffee filled the little kitchen and the ticking of the clock on the shelf gave a happy sound to the peaceful morning scene.
    “Papa,” a gentle but sturdy voice sounded softly from the doorway. “Why don’t you go up to bed and get some rest. The others are still sleeping, and I can fix breakfast when they wake up. Please, Papa,” she urged, placing her hand on his rough one.
    Looking up into his daughter’s face, Mr. Sullivan smiled. She looked so much like her mother had, the same brown hair that neither curled nor frizzed, the golden brown eyes which showed every emotion in their clear depths, the lovely mouth seemingly curved into a constant smile and the hands and face darkened from hours in the sun. Leigh was her mother all over again and Ira Sullivan felt a lump rise in his throat.
    “Please, Papa, go to bed now,” Leigh begged. “The storm is over and the sun is coming up in a clear sky. I can take care of everything. Get some rest.”
    “All right,” the older man finally agreed. He was tired. Every muscle seemed to ache and it was with difficulty that he stood up. Gently his daughter helped him from the room and watched his slow progress up the winding stairs of the lighthouse to his room.
    “If only Marshall were home,” Leigh mused, opening the windows and breathing in the fresh sea air. “This job as lighthouse keeper is getting too hard for Papa. He isn’t as young as he used to be, before Mama died.” She busied herself about the lower rooms, opening the windows to let in the cool breeze before entering to the kitchen. “What he needs is a vacation,” she muttered, her thoughts returning to her tired father. “If only I could send him to visit Kathryn and John and the children. The rest would do him so much good and I know Kathryn would love to have him. Perhaps it would work. I think I’ll write to her today and send it when the post comes. But--” and here she paused recalling the one problem which had thwarted her plans many times before. Who would take care of the lighthouse? It couldn’t take care of itself nor could you just ask a neighbor to run over and light the lamps each evening. It had to be someone who knew lighthouses, someone who had grown up with one, who knew the responsibilities, the challenges, the dangers as well as the delights and pleasures of such work. Here her thoughts turned once again to her younger brother. Marshall knew all about lighthouses. He had helped alongside his father since he was strong enough to carry a lantern. But Marshall wasn’t there. He was away at college. That had been Mr. Sullivan’s dream: to have his son attend college.
    “Now Marshall is gone when Papa needs him the most,” Leigh sighed.
    Hearing movement in the room above her, she began to prepare breakfast for the crew of the small fishing vessel wrecked during last night’s storm and rescued by herself and her father. Her own troubled thoughts would have to wait.

    It was afternoon, clear, sunny and warm, when Leigh, leaving her father dozing in his favorite chair wandered forth from the lighthouse out into the sunshine, across the rough green grass on the hill down to the beach. The waves rolled in from the deep blue Atlantic ocean leaving white foam along the golden sands as they receded only to rush back the next minute and reclaim it. Washed up by higher tides were sea shells; some were broken but many lovely ones lay half buried on the shore.
    Wandering slowly along, stopping now and then to pick up an exceptionally lovely shell, Leigh at last took off her hat, pulled the pins from her hair and let the wind off the sea cool her face. She looked lovely standing there, her brown hair blowing behind her, her long dress simple but well made and fitting her perfectly from the plain collar down to the hem at the top of her boots. So she stood, silent and still, unaware that she was being observed until a manly shout caused her to start in surprise and whirl around.
    “Marshall!” she exclaimed, so astonished that she couldn’t have said anything else had she had time.
    She had no time, however, for a young man was racing down the slope and the next instant had her in his arms and lifted her off her feet to kiss her and laugh. “I thought I’d never get here. The train seemed to make twenty more stops than were on the schedule and then the stage had to make two other stops before it could drop me off. My luggage is out near the house. I looked in but Father was asleep and then I saw you out here and just had to come see you. You don’t know how good it is to be back again!” How fast the young man talked. “You haven’t got any idea of how lonesome I was for the sea. College was great fun, but I’m glad it’s over with.”
    Somehow Leigh managed to put in a few words, “Over with?”
    Crossing his arms, Marshall put on an aggrieved air, “Don’t you read anything out here?” he asked. “Fine sister you are not to even know you are looking at a college graduate. One who, I might add, was sixth in his class.”
    “Oh Marshall, I’m so proud of you, but why on earth didn’t you write and tell us?” Leigh demanded.
    “I did.”
    “I didn’t see any letters. Papa wouldn’t have hidden them . . .”
    The young man gave a sheepish grin and reached into his pocket. “I forgot to mail them.”
    “Marshall!”
    Then the two, the taller, broad shouldered, younger brother and the smaller, sturdy older sister laughed.
    “Come to the house now and see Father,” Leigh said at last after the laugh had subsided. “He will be delighted to see you again.” And she led the way across the sandy shore towards the lighthouse.

Come back next week to read the end.