Read Texas Weddings 3 & 4 Online

Authors: Janice Thompson

Tags: #Anthologies

Texas Weddings 3 & 4 (43 page)

BOOK: Texas Weddings 3 & 4
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Nathan shared his excitement over
his work for the people of
Greenvine
. Then, they
talked about tonight’s church choir party at her parents’ home.

In
short, they talked about today.

“You
want to know something funny?” Nathan asked as they pulled into the center of
town.

“What’s
that?”

He
smiled as he reflected on what he would say. “Might sound a little cheesy, but
I always thought money could buy love.”

“What?”
She giggled. “Really?”

He
nodded. “Well, in a manner of speaking. I thought that if we had the right
combination of things, happiness would follow.” He glanced back at the sleeping
child in the backseat. “But I was wrong.”

“Funny,
how different we are from the people we were just a year and a half ago,”
Kellie said. “But I wouldn’t change a thing. Would you?”

“Nope.”
He reached to give her hand a squeeze. “I wouldn’t change a thing.”

 

***

 

Kellie’s
heart leaped for joy as they pulled into her parents’ driveway. Her father
stood on the front porch, fussing with the screen door. He waved,
then
joined them at the car.

“Daddy,
you shouldn’t be outside. It’s chilly out here,” Kellie scolded.

He
shrugged. “That screen door is getting rusty. Just cleaning the hinges.” He
gave her a wink. “It’s one of the perks of retirement. I can fuss around the
house all day. Drive you mother crazy.”

Kellie
couldn’t help but laugh.

Her father’s eyes sparkled as he
looked into the back seat. “How’s that grandson of mine?”

“As
feisty as ever.” Kellie lifted Logan from his car seat and placed him into his
grandfather’s outstretched arms. “And very anxious to see his grandpa.”

“He’s
a handsome fellow.” Her father ran his fingers through the baby’s curls.

“Yes,
he is.” Kellie couldn’t help but agree. Logan was a dead ringer for Nathan. How
could she think otherwise?
 

They
entered the house with hearts quite full. Kellie headed straight off to the
kitchen to help her mother. They still had a couple of hours before guests
would arrive for tonight’s festivities, but setting up the table felt only
right. They shifted back and forth from kitchen to dining room carrying food,
paper plates and silverware. Kellie set up the punch bowl and checked the
refrigerator to make sure she had the necessary ingredients for later.

They
finished up as quickly as they could, but when all was said and done, her
mother stood back and surveyed the dining room with a look of concern on her
face.

“What’s
wrong, Mom?”

Her mother shook her head. “I feel
like I’m forgetting something. Wish I could remember what it was.” She
disappeared back into the kitchen. Moments later, Kellie heard a gasp and ran
to her mother’s side.

“What is it?”

“I just remembered!” Her mother’s
face lit up. “Mrs. Dennison is bringing those cookies your father loves so much
- homemade peanut butter kisses—and I wanted to use that beautiful old
tray my grandmother passed down to me.”

“Where is it?” Kellie asked.

Her mother bit her lip and stood
in silence a moment before answering. “Oh, I remember now. I packed it away in
a box with some old family heirlooms years ago. It’s at the top of the closet
in your old room.” She looked at Kellie with renewed excitement. “I think it
would be just perfect, and I haven’t had a chance to use it for years. It seems
kind of silly to have it sitting in a closet when I could be using it. Would
you mind getting it for me, Honey?”

“Of course not. I’d be happy to.”

Kellie passed through the living
room, gave all three of her men a kiss on the forehead and kept going until she
arrived in her old bedroom. Once inside, a flood of memories hit. Her mother
had changed little in this room throughout the years. The same twin bed with
ruffled floral bedspread sat underneath the window. A worn teddy bear leaned
against the pillows. The chest of drawers that had once held her personal
belongings stood in its place on the far left wall. Her little study desk and
chair sat to her right. A colorful paint-by-numbers rendition of a horse still
clung to the wall just over the desk. In short, it was every bit as charming as
it had ever been.

Kellie switched on the light and
entered the closet. It still had that funny closet smell she remembered so well
from childhood. She looked around, trying to figure out where the box might be.
“Ah ha.” There. Just above her to the left.

She pulled the chair into the
closet and climbed up on it to have a closer look. The box proved to be a bit
heavier than she’d remembered. She struggled with it, but finally freed it from
its place.

She set the box on the bed and
opened it with great care, knowing the value of the things inside. How many
times had she and her mother looked through this very box during her
childhood?
 
How many times had she
and her sister snuck into the closet for another peek at t

One by one, Kellie lifted the
items:
 
an oval photograph of her
great-grandmother, a carefully wrapped gravy bowl, and several chipped and worn
figurines.

Just after Kellie lifted the large
tray, her hand hit upon another item wrapped in newspaper. Funny, but this one
didn’t ring a bell. She examined the newspaper for clues. The stories appeared
to be from another era, but not her grandmother’s time. More
like.
. .

More like my time.

Quite gingerly, she lifted back
the layers of paper. Kellie couldn’t help but gasp as the small pink piggy bank
revealed itself. She clutched it to her chest and a lump rose in her throat.
All of the memories came back at once. She’d taken the piggy bank, stuffed full
of coins, and hidden it away so that she wouldn’t be tempted to spend the
money. She’d tucked it away in a safe place, knowing she might need it in the
future.

This is the future.

With the tray in one hand and the
piggy bank in the other, she practically sprinted back into the kitchen. She
approached her mother with tears in her eyes.

“Thanks so much, Honey.” Her
mother reached to take the tray, then gave her an odd look. “
W.
. .what’s happened?
 
Is everything
okay?”

“Yes.” Kellie held out the piggy
bank and bounced up and down with excitement.

Her mother clamped a hand over her mouth and shook her head,
clearly not believing her eyes. “Oh my. Kellie, I don’t believe it.”

“I’m not sure I do either.” Kellie
clutched the fragile little pig in her hands and smiled. “But there’s got to be
some reason why the Lord dropped it in my lap, don’t you think?”

“I suppose you’ll have to ask
Him.”

At that very moment, Nathan walked
into the kitchen, mouth stuffed full of cheese and crackers. “Ask who?
 
What?”

Kellie just smiled and held up the
piggy bank.

“What’s that?” He popped another
cracker in his mouth.

“My old piggy bank,” she
responded. “At least, it used to be mine. Years ago.” She beamed with delight.
“I put a lot of time and effort into saving for the future with this little
guy.”

“Really?” Nathan’s eyes lit up.
“So, you’re saying there’s quite a nest egg in there?”

She nodded. “Well, quite a little
nest egg for an eight-year-old. That’s how old I was when I lost him.”

Nathan’s eyes grew large. “And you
just found it now?”

“I did.” She grinned. “Just now.”

“Wow.” He drew near and looked at
her intently. “So, what are you going to do with all that money?”

“That’s a good question.” Kellie
stared at the little bank with renewed interest. “I worked for years to fill
him up.”

She had invested all of her excess
change—had even done without some of the luxuries her sister had enjoyed,
all for the future.

This is the future.

The words rang out in her spirit
once again and Kellie knew immediately what she must do. She reached into a
nearby drawer and pulled out a hammer. With one fell swoop, she split the
little piggy in two. Coins scattered across the kitchen counter, and a few even
rolled off onto the floor. She scooped every last one up into her hands and
squealed with delight.

The noise drew her father and
Logan in from the next room. Her entire family stood in shocked silence,
watching her every move.

“Kellie?” Nathan stared at her in
amazement. “What in the world are you doing?”

She
looked up into her husband’s concerned eyes and laughed. “I’m going to invest
in something we can all use—here and now.”

“And
what would that be?” He took her in his arms and planted happy kisses on her
forehead.

She
looked up with the most serious face she could muster. “I figure there’s a good
twenty dollars here.”

“Right.
So.
. ..?”

“So,”
she looked up at him, joy spilling over. “Twenty dollars might not take us to
Europe. I’m not sure it would even put enough gas in our tank to get to
Houston. But it’s probably just about the right amount to take us all out for
banana splits.”

“What?”
Her mother looked stunned. “You don’t mean now, do you?
 
We have people coming over in a couple
of hours.”

Kellie
looked at her watch. “In that amount of time, we could swallow down enough ice
cream to give us all stomach aches.” She scraped the coins into her purse with
the rest of her family looking on.


But.
. .It’s chilly outside. Who
eats ice cream when it’s chilly out?” Her mother tried to argue, but Kellie put
up a hand and stopped her mid-stream.

“I do.”

They all continued to stare and Kellie erupted in laughter.
No doubt they thought she’d lost her mind. But she didn’t care. She’d been set
free, liberated.

“I won’t take no for an answer,” she said. “And don’t you
worry about getting back on time. I’m the Queen of Quick, remember?”

Her
mother nodded, forehead etched with wrinkles. “
I.
. .
I remember.”

“Well
then, what’s keeping us?
 
Let’s
shake this place!”

The room came alive with activity
as everyone darted this way and that to collect their belongings. Her father
took the baby, and her mother scurried off into the master bedroom to retrieve
a warm sweater.

Kellie grabbed her purse, now
heavy with coins, and looked up into Nathan’s sparkling eyes. He nodded his
approval and together they sprinted toward the car.

 

Thank you for reading Texas Weddings.

 

If you enjoy Texas-based love stories, consider reading
Hurricane
,
a novel about the Galveston hurricane of 1900 by author Janice Thompson.

 

Check out Janice’s
Amazon
Author Page

Janice’s website:
www.janicehannathompson.com

Follow Janice on twitter at:
booksbyjanice

Facebook: Janice Hanna Thompson

BOOK: Texas Weddings 3 & 4
12.17Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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