Saturday, December 5, 2009

Part 2

And now, part 2. The second part. : )
    Katherine O'Hara watched as the hammocks were lowered into the sea. Her ma was in one of them. During that last storm, when seasickness had raged through the steerage, her mother, who had contracted pneumonia even before the ship had left the harbor, had taken her last breath. Pneumonia and the sea was a fatal mix to be sure. Not that her ma had shown much will to live anyways. After Da died, Ma was just never the same. She had no fight left in her. Death was so cruel. And to be orphaned, an only child, on the way to a new country, at 10 years old. No mother, no father, no brothers, no sisters, no nothing except ocean, and a frightening new country. Life was so cruel.

    "Katie, dearie! You must wake up! You don't want to miss your train, now do you?" Jerked out of her dream by the open curtains and kind, motherly voice, Katie sleepily wiped the tears off her face.     "Ah, dear. When will the dreams stop? It's been fifteen years!"

    "They donna come so often now. Only when life gets ta scarin' me. An' when I wake up, I remember that Jesus saved me soul, an' 'e's in charge of it all." Both women's accent fit her background well. While Katie's every fiber screamed 'Irish', her counterpart and fill-in mother since that dreadful day at sea, was a common Englishwoman to the core. Fifteen years in America should have lessened Katie's brogue, even Mary had begun to speak like their American neighbors, but Katie purposely held on to her accent as her last link to her parents.

    Ach, how Aye'm agonna miss 'er when she's gone! Not that Aye don't 'ave plenty others ta look after. And Aye thank Thee, Lord, for every last one o' them, but, Lord, she's the 'ole reason Aye began this orphanage! Aye don't guess that's true, is it? You gave me this idea long before she ever came along. An' it took me losin' me own babies, an' 'er losin' 'er Mother an' Father ta make me listen.

    "Miss Mary?" Katie paused, then sniffled. "Aye'm really gonna be missin' ya. Aye'll write ever' day. And pray fer ya and the babies ever' minute!"

    "Missy, Aye don't want ya thinkin' about your family here too much. You're gonna go be a bride, and you'll need to think about your husband. Startin' a life with someone is hard enough when you know him and know how much he loves ya; startin' a life with a stranger…it will take everything ye've got to make it work. Thinkin' too much about us will only make you homesick and miserable."

    "I'm already homesick. How can a girl like me be going across the country? All I've seen of America in fifteen years was this city! I don't even think I've seen all of New York! What was I thinking signing up to go to Texas?!"

    "You were thinking that you were wanting a husband, and God wasn't giving you one here. You were thinking that, after much prayer, this is the answer that came. You were thinking that this was the best way to break from us and marry a man who will be able to take care of you, and not some man that will work in a God-awful factory his whole life and never make a cent! You were thinking good when you decided all this, and I don't want to hear another negative word out of you! You can't change your mind now, love, so get up, get dressed, and finish your packing. I think I can manage breakfast without you today; I suppose I'll need the practice!"

    Mary's harsh and loving words were what Katie needed to hear. Katie knew Mary was hiding her own pain in anger and the words spurred Katie into action.

To be continued... At some point in the hopefully not too distant future...

Friday, December 4, 2009

Part 1

This is, as it is titled, Part 1. The first half of the prologue. I certainly don't want false encouragement, but if you do have something nice to say, please say it! It's really scary to me to have this out here, floating around cyber space! To separate the story from the rambling, I put it in the typewritery font. It's been a really long time since I actually used a typewriter. I used to use one all the time at Carmen's desk. (The Elementary principal, aka my grandmother, had a secretary named Carment Who had a typewriter. Which I enjoyed playing with.)

    Daniel Abraham Brown. A good, strong name for a good, strong man, mother always said. It was true, too. Until the tragedy, at least. Honorable discharge from the Rangers. What could be worse? Why couldn't that Comanche arrow have just killed me? Instead, it destroyed my elbow. They took my arm! Daniel thought these thoughts as he lay in a bed in San Antonio, Texas, unable to leave. His lost arm troubled him, for reasons he couldn't explain. He didn't realize that his dreams, his every want had depended on him being a whole man. Not a cripple. Now he thought he was useless. But of course, none of this ever occurred to him. That preacher, who has two arms, said this's a blessing in disguise. Blessing!? Blessing was not the word Daniel would've used, disguised or not.

    "Captain, as soon as you can travel, we've arranged for your passage home."

Dr. Houston began speaking as soon as he saw Daniel's open eyes.

    "How? On a horse?" Daniel snorted.

    "Well, nothing goes south of here. San Antonio's the end of the line. No one's even heard of Paloma Solitaria."

    "Of course no one's heard of it! I ain't made it into a real place yet! Gimme a horse and a pack horse, I can ride." I got to be able to ride! There's gotta be a way!

    "Your arm's not strong enough to ride, you can take a wagon. 'Sides, we're keeping you longer. Infection could set in, then what would you do?"

    "A wagon wouldn't make it into Paloma Solitaria! The brush is too thick; it'd take weeks longer to take the wagon trail!"

    "Alright, then you can wait until we've made arrangements for you to leave that way." The doctor thought he'd won; he could keep this cranky patient at least a little longer. He'd never let Daniel know, but he was extremely worried about infection. Daniel had been near death when he arrived.

    "I'd make my own arrangements if you'd let me out of this God-forsaken bed!" The bitterness was so apparent in Daniel's voice that Dr. Houston cringed.

    "Ah, yes, well, speakin' of God, that preacher's here to see you again." The preacher's arrival gave the doctor a welcome excuse to leave the room.

    As the preacher entered, he could hear Daniel shouting his refusal to see the preacher.

    "Good luck Parson, he's really bitter today!" the doctor said as he left the room.

    "Doc, you oughta know I don't need luck! I've got God on my side!"

    "Preacher, if I gotta hear that kinda stuff, ya might as well leave now!" Dan said loudly.

    "Captain, I have something I really think you'll wanna hear."

    "Yeah, well, what is it? Then you can leave."

    "Well, Captain, we've received word, and I was asked to share it with ya, and it's important. Well, uh, we got word that your mother is extremely ill, and her doctor said she's…"

    "Doctor? If they called the doctor, she's as good as dead! Since you seem to be the messenger boy 'round here, you can go tell everyone that I'm leavin' tomorrow."


    "Yeah, tomorrow! Now leave me alone, I gotta think!"

    "You need more'n thinkin', you need to rely on God ta get ya through this. You got nothin' ta go home to. Do ya want your dyin' mother ta see ya like this? She's better off rememb'rin' you as ya rode off ta join the Rangers!" By the time the preacher was finished, Daniel was sobbing; he knew what the preacher meant. He wasn't talking about his arm at all, but his attitude.

    "Preacher, I made Jesus my Savior a long, long time ago, but I never did make Him Lord. I never got that peace my momma has. If she saw me now…you're right. I shouldn't go home…Not like this."

    "You can get that peace. Boy, all ya gotta do is make Him Lord, too!"

    "I've made such a mess of things! I just don't think I can just let go now!"

    "Yore right. Ya can't. Not in your own strength, ya cain't. But you've already made him Savior; it's not hard to do the rest now!"

To be continued... : )

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Scary, Scary, Scary

I want to do something kinda scary. Somewhere there about high school, I got an idea for a story. It's not an incredibly origional idea, but it's something I'd read (if it were well written). I've actually had quite a few ideas, but that's such a digression right now.

Senior year, we had to write a story story, not an essay I mean, and I chose to kinda revise/rewrite/begin a prolouge to this story floating around in my head. My teacher said she liked it and certainly wanted to read the rest of it, which was, you know, just floating in my head, and I'm fairly certain I got a 100 on it even though just now when I was editing it, I found a grammatical error. Just one, though.

Anyways, I was thinking about "publishing" it on here in two parts and then more as I write it. You know, because I have lots of time to write a story right now with a dirty, un-Christmas decorated (except the outside) house with less than half my Christmas presents actually made and throw some travel in, and, oh yeah, I have a job.

(Can you see what a miracle it is that there was only one grammatical error?)

So, I'm going to schedule the story in 2 parts across the next 2 days because hopefully I'll spend the next 2 days doing important Christmasy (and maybe some not Christmasy) things. Like clean house. And finish Christmas presents. Cuz, did you know, it's already December?! (BTW, sorry I forgot, but Happy Birthday, Rita! I actually knew, but didn't wanna mention it yesterday.) And like, almost Christmas already?! Time flies, ya'll, time flies.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

My Healing Nose

Rita, I know you are a faithful reader, but I just want to warn you, this post might be cathartic or you might just not want to read it. Fair warning. Love you.

So last Thursday, in my haste to get up and ready to go see my Aunt Sandy, I scratched my nose. Not the top part, either. Underneath, where my nostril is. With my engagement ring. (It sounds funny to say engagement ring now that I'm married, but I'm pretty sure you still call it that...) It hurt, but I kinda just ignored it. Until later when I was bawling uncontrollably and wiped my nose.

I was able to ignore it most of the time, unless I was crying and wiping my nose, which has been happening, but not constantly or anything.

And then today.

When I spent a good part of the day crying again. And my nose hurt all over again.

Do you see where I'm going with this?

It's a metaphor. I like metaphors.

I can be going through my day and be OK and then, suddenly, something will trigger the tears. And then I wipe my nose. And the pain in my nose reflects my heart.

My nose is already starting to heal and I'm sure will be pain-free soon. And I know that right now Sandy is healed and pain-free. So I'm waiting for my heart to heal, too. Today was a good step in that direction.

Thanks for your prayers. Please continue to pray.