Chapter 13A Chapter by Shep
“Well Danny we're home.” Grandma said as she pulled the bike into the driveway and saw Richard running to greet them.
“I think he'll feel better after he's had a warm bath and full tummy,” she replied as she rubbed his stomach, that made Danny laugh. “That's better, I knew I could make him smile,” she said as she pushed little Danny's nose.
Richard watched his Ma hang up his little jacket in the closest.
“Ma what on earth is he wearing?” He said as he laughed.
“Oh this?” Danny said as he looked up at Richard with his big blue eyes. “Haven't you ever seen an Indian before?” And started to dance around the kitchen and around the house whooping and hollering… Danny stopped in front of him. “Will and Robert made it for me, neat ha. We are all Indians now, EJ is too,” and danced some more.
After she bathed him and gave him a hot meal. Grandma was right, as she watched him doze off in the middle of the floor. She carefully picked up the tired little boy and put him to bed and gently kissed him on the cheek as she wished him goodnight.
“Ok Richard, sit with me awhile and I'll fill you in on the details of the farm,” she said as she set a pot tea on the table. “First of all, EJ's fine.” She said after a quick sigh and dabbed a tear from her eye. Richard took a deep breath.
“Now what's this about him becoming an Indian and Danny?” He asked.
“Are my sisters back yet?”
“I believe so. Why?”
“I think its time we had a little get together.” Richard almost turned white right on the spot. Ma smiled and laughed. “No son, not that kind of get together.” Richard took another deep breath. “I think its time the girls came over and see their little brother and we sisters can chat awhile,” as she patted his hand. Richard feeling relieved wiped the sweat from his forehead with his sleeve, for just a moment thoughts of old Harley coming to life. “I think I'll give my sister Lizy call right now. You said they are back?” As she got up from the table and went to the phone.
“Now Ma?” He asked sitting there stunned.
“Why not Richard? You said they were back, and you know how I hate waiting around for the other shoe to drop,” she said.
“Yes Ma.” As he shrugged his shoulders, “I think I’ll go check on Danny.” Then got up from the table, afraid to hear what might happen and shook his head as he left the room muttering. “Indians of all things, and I was worried about the neighbors.”
“Hello Lizy.” Betty said as Lizy picked up the phone.
“Why Betty you are home already!” She replied.
“Yes, and I understand just in time too,” she said.
“Yes Richard has filled me in on everything what's been going on down here. I've got some news of my own and I think it would be a goodtime if we brought the girls down for awhile. So they can see their little brother Danny while we chat awhile.”
“When?” Lizy asked.
“Oh I was thinking about tomorrow, would that be ok, say for lunch?”
“Oh that will be such a nice surprise for Danny to see his sisters again. What a day. I sure hope EJ is alright, poor boy. I really didn't want leave him like that, but if I didn't. I would never have found the strength.” As she wiped the tear from her eye and headed down the hall towards Danny's room. She glanced over at the sleeping child in the bed and brushed his soft hair, he stirs only a moment and mumbles “EJ” in his sleep, she bend down and kissed his forehead, knowing how it still broke her heart and wondered how?... why? Then walked to her bed and she cried softly to sleep.
* * *
“Linda, I was thinking maybe it is time we consider the possibility that we need some help.” Jim said as he turned to his wife across the room, who was staring out the window.
“You said the first one would always be the problem child. Three kids later, sure it got easier. Only because we knew what we did wrong and what was wrong? I ask you Jim. What was wrong? I'll tell you what wrong. BAD GENES! You said he'll grow out of it, they all will. Jim where are they now? You want help. Fine you go get help. It's your fault anyway. Maybe you can ask those nosey neighbors of yours. Since they seem to know more than you do.” She said as she slammed the bedroom door. “I am going to bed.”
* * *
“Pa?” Sam said tugged on his pant leg, “Pa what are you doing?” He asked.
Pa bent down and picked Sam up off the ground and watched him rub the sleep out of his eyes. “Sam I'm setting the table for dinner.” Pa said.
They rolled in dirt as they laughed so hard it woke Robert and EJ with a start. Seeing the fun, Robert started tickling Will and Sam and EJ started laughing then they started tickling him. Pa and Anna laughed so hard they fell off the log. Ma and Julie came out of the house to see what the matter was.
Ma looked around the farm. “What is going on?” She asked. The boys rolled in the dirt laughing to death. She ran over to EJ. “Son, are you hurt?” She asked.
EJ laughed. “Yes ma’am it hurts,” he said as he laughed holding his sides in before they burst.
“What did?” She asked as he came closer to her husband.
You could hear him chasing her in the house. “
“Pa, Sam said you wanted to see us!” Will and Robert now covered from head to toe in dust and dirt.
“As you know it would be hard to get EJ to sit at the table because his legs are still too swollen to bend. So I was thinking of taking some platforms and put them across under the table for his legs and feet to rest on. Then we can set a pillow behind his back. I have an extra leaf for the table in the barn. That way he won't feel so crowded,” he said.
Will and Robert helped clean EJ up the best they could as Pa came over to the lean-to. “EJ, I think its time you started to eat with us as part of the family son. What do say?” He asked.
EJ nods head yes, “ok,” knowing they really do mean it. “Alright sir, I'm ready.” Having no idea how he was going sit at the table. Pa picked up EJ brought him over to the table with some adjustments for his legs and back made sure he was comfortable. Robert and Will sat on each side of him keeping him in the middle so he wouldn’t fall out.
Downing family sat around the family table under the stars, with lanterns and fire pit in the background for light; the tepee throwing off shadows of the family as they gathered around the table. Pa sat at one end and the Ma at the other. The girls and Sam sat on the opposite side of the three Indian brothers.
Ma looked at her four boys then at Pa then at girls. Ma gave Pa a slight grin. In her mind she tried to picture a family dinner. Somehow this was not what she had pictured in her mind, but was willing to make the best of it for now. She looked at her four boys and tried to image them all in clean farmer shirts and smiles, not as four Indians boys, “Now that's better. Pa mind cutting the ham and Julie pass down the peas,” she said.
They talked about the events of the day and what went on in town and plans they had for the farm and how the crops are doing and when they needed to think about harvesting putting in planting of the corn and wheat and bringing in the summer hay.
“Will, Robert?” Pa asked.
“Will?” Robert asked placing some more vegetables on his plate.
“Ma?” Julie asked.
Julie and Anna cleared the table bring the treats and joined the family around the fire.
“Will, Robert? I think it's time we start building on to the house and EJ can help too when he can. Since one of the rooms is going to be his.” Pa said as he rubbed his chin. “And he can help with your chores too when he gets stronger.”
“Yes I know that, but he will in a few days or so, we need to get those muscles moving again. So a little hard labor and some fresher air will be good for him; I think you boys got the right idea, crazy or not, but a solid one at that. So I'll let you keep your promise.” He said as he rubbed his chin then fires a marshmallow into the fire. Pa looked at his startled wife thinking he just lost his mind then seeing little Sam starting to doze off, he smiled, placed the marshmallow into his mouth whispered to his startled wife. As he leaned down placing a kiss on her forehead, “don't go anywhere, I'll be back,” he said.
Pa walked over and picked up Sam and carried him into the tepee and put him to bed, while his wife watched with a startled look and shook her head. Will and Robert picked up EJ and followed Pa and sat him gently on the bed inside tepee then closed the flap and turned out the lantern and laid on top of their sleeping bags and fell asleep.
With a tear in her eye she softly pounded on his chest. “It did
“Let’s go sit on the swing for awhile.” He said with twinkle in his eye, knowing that only he could melt that stubborn heart of hers... They sat in the swing and he pulled her tight into his arms she leaned close to his chest as they rocked back and forth. “Martha dear,” he said as she looked into his eyes. “Do you remember that full moon?” Not taking his eyes off hers. Martha listened to his heart as it beat in his chest and the warmth and comfort of his arms she sighed and melts. The Indians, the tepee and farm in the distant, all that remained are stars and the man in her arms... He leaned down and looked into her eyes.
Pa put his wife to bed placed the covers over her shoulder walked down to the girl's room and whispered. “Goodnight my sweet angels,” and placed a kiss on each of their cheeks. Instead of going to the boy’s room he went out to the tepee and carefully walked around to each of his sons Will, Robert, Sam and EJ brushed their hair from their forehead gave them each a kiss as well. “Sleep my Indian sons, sleep well my farmer sons,” and walked out of their tepee.
* * *
© 2012 Shep
Added on June 8, 2012
Last Updated on June 14, 2012
Whats Behind the Looking Glass?
AboutUpdated January 23, 2013 I have started a New Book Titled: My Life And How It Has Changed Me. Listed under my single books. I would love to have lots of friends that review my hard work. Please .. more..