Read Threads of Love Online

Authors: Judith Mccoy; Miller

Threads of Love

BOOK: Threads of Love
5.59Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

Threads of Love
©1997 by Barbour Publishing, Inc.
Woven Threads
©1997 by Barbour Publishing, Inc.

Print ISBN 978-1-63058-619-5

eBook Editions:
Adobe Digital Edition (.epub) 978-1-63409-746-8
Kindle and MobiPocket Edition (.prc) 978-1-63409-747-5

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted for commercial purposes, except for brief quotations in printed reviews, without written permission of the publisher.

All scripture quotations are taken from the King James Version of the Bible.

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either products of the author’s imagination or used fictitiously. Any similarity to actual people, organizations, and/or events is purely coincidental.

Published by Barbour Books, an imprint of Barbour Publishing, Inc., P.O. Box 719, Uhrichsville, OH 44683,
www.barbourbooks.com

Our mission is to publish and distribute inspirational products offering exceptional value and biblical encouragement to the masses
.

Printed in the United States of America.

Table of Contents

Threads of Love

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Woven Threads

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 1

T
he sounds in the kitchen caused Delphinia to startle awake, and she immediately felt the dreadful taste of bile rise in her throat. Jumping from her bed, she ran to the washstand, removed the pitcher, and expelled the few remains of last night’s supper into the chipped bowl. Looking into the small mirror that hung over the washstand, she was met by a ghostly likeness of herself.
I can’t bear this; I just can’t
, she thought as she rinsed her mouth and reached for a small linen towel to wipe her perspiring forehead. Making her way back to bed, she wrapped herself in a quilt and prayed that this was a bad dream.

“Oh please, dear Lord, let me go to sleep and wake up to my mama’s laughter in the kitchen. Let this all be a horrible nightmare.”

Instead, she heard her father’s harsh command, “I hear ya awake in there, Delphinia. This ain’t no day to be lazin’ around. You get yourself dressed and do it
now
. You still got things to pack, and time’s getting short.”

“I know, Pa, but I’m feeling poorly. Maybe you’d better tell that man I won’t be able to go with him. I’m sure he won’t want some sickly girl,” she replied in a feeble attempt to dissuade him.

She heard her father’s heavy footsteps come across the kitchen floor toward her room, knowing that she had tested his patience too far. The bedroom door swung open, and he said in a strained voice, “Either you get yourself dressed, or you’ll travel as you are.”

“Yes, Pa,” she answered, knowing her efforts to deter him had failed and that she would soon be leaving home.

Trying to keep her stomach in check, she donned a green gingham dress and quickly pinned her hair in place. Not giving much care to her appearance, she sat down on the bed and placed her remaining belongings into the old trunk. Her hands trembled as she picked up a frayed shawl, threw it around her shoulders, and lay back on the bed, willing herself to think of happier days.

The noise outside the house brought her back to the present. How long had she been lying there? The streaming rays of sunlight that patterned the room told her that it must be close to noon. Her heart began to pound, and immediately she began pressing down the gathers of her skirt in a slow, methodical motion. There was a loud knock at the heavy wooden door, followed by footsteps and the sound of voices. Minutes passed, and then she heard her father calling out her name. She picked up her bonnet and sat staring at it, unwilling to accept that the time of departure had arrived. Her father called out again, and she could hear the impatience in his voice. Knowing she dared not provoke him further, she compelled herself to rise from the bed and walk to the kitchen.

There, standing before her, was Jonathan Wilshire, the man who had bargained with Pa to take her away from the only home she had ever known. It was a certainty that she would dislike him. She had prayed and prayed about her predicament, but somehow God had not seen fit to eliminate this man from her life. She had begun praying that his horse would break a leg, and he would not arrive. But soon she was asking forgiveness for thinking in such an unkind manner. She briefly considered a plea to God that Mr. Wilshire get lost on the journey, but she knew that would not be a Christian prayer, for he had children at home who required his safe return. So, in desperation, she did as her mama had told her many times: “When you don’t know for sure what to pray for, just turn it over to the Lord, for He knows your heart and will provide the best way.” Fervent prayers had been uttered each night outlining the folly of the decision to send her West and requesting the Lord’s assistance in finding a remedy. Although she was not sure what was best for her, she knew that leaving for Kansas with Mr. Wilshire would be a mistake. Given the amount of time she had spent in dissertation, she had been positive the Lord would agree and save her from this pending disaster.

Just look at what results that had produced!
Here was Jonathan Wilshire, standing in her kitchen and looking fit as a fiddle, ready to take her to some farm in Kansas and turn her into a mama for his children. Where had her mother ever gotten the notion that praying like that would work?

Her heart had slowed down somewhat, and she began to feel outrage and frustration begin to take over. She stepped toward her father and had just begun to open her mouth and voice that anger when, sensing her wrath, he said, “Delphinia, this is Jonathan Wilshire, the gentlemen we have discussed.”

Once again, her palms began pressing down the gathers in her skirt, and, looking directly at her father, she blurted out, “We never
discussed
Mr. Wilshire, Papa. You merely announced you were sending me away with him.”

Delphinia could sense the discomfort she was causing for both men. Feeling she must press any advantage that could be gained, she continued with her tirade. “Papa, I’ve told you over and over that I don’t want to leave you. It’s been only a few months since Mama died, and I don’t want to lose you, too…and my home, Papa. Must I leave my home?” Tears had begun to roll down her cheeks and onto the pale green bodice of her frock. Her father stared at her in disbelief. She had never, in all of her seventeen years, questioned his decisions. Now, here she was, humiliating him in front of a total stranger. Not knowing if it was caused by anger or embarrassment, she watched as his short, thick neck and unshaven face quickly began to turn from deep tan to purplish red, clear to his receding hairline. Given the choices, she was hoping for embarrassment because her papa was not easy to contend with when angry. But as soon as their eyes met, she knew he was not only angry but that he had reached the “boilin’ stage,” as Mama used to call it. Well, so be it. He was sending her away, and she was going to tell him how she felt. After all, she had given God a chance to get things in order, and He had certainly missed the mark!

“Delphinia,” her father roared, “you will fetch the rest of your possessions immediately and place them in Mr. Wilshire’s wagon. We’ve already loaded the other trunks. I’ll hear no more of this nonsense. You know you’re goin’ along with Mr. Wilshire to look after his children. He’s ready to pull out. Now mind your tongue, girl, and do as you’re told.”

Eyes downcast and knowing that her fate was sealed, she quietly murmured, “Of course, Papa. I’ll only be a minute.”

Walking back to her room, Delphinia allowed herself one last look at the dwelling she had called home for all of her seventeen years. She entered her sparsely furnished bedroom for the last time, grabbed the handle on the side of her trunk, and pulled it into the kitchen.

Making her way toward the center of the kitchen, her father once again began with his issuance of instructions. “Now mind your manners, sis. I’ve told Mr. Wilshire that you know your reading and writing and can teach his youngsters what schooling they need to know.”

Turning to the stranger, he continued his diatribe, “She even knows how to work with her numbers, and so if there isn’t a school nearby, she’ll make a fine teacher for you.”

He sounds like he’s selling a bill of goods
, Delphinia thought. Besides, all of her studies had been through her mama’s efforts. Pa had always said it was a waste of time and had chided Ma for spending time on Delphinia’s lessons. But her mother had stood firm and said it was important for both girls and boys to know how to read, write, and do their figures. When Pa would become too obstinate about the subject, Ma would smile sweetly and tell him that no child of hers would be raised not knowing how to read God’s Word. Then Pa would continue. Now here he was, using that bit of education to get rid of her.

Her thoughts ran rampant, wondering what kind of bargain had been struck between her pa and this man. Delphinia was not told the particulars, and she knew her pa would never divulge all of the information to her. She knew he just wanted to be free of any responsibility. Ever since Mama had died, all he could talk about was his going to search for gold and how he would be rich and free of his worries. He had talked about it for years, but Mama had always managed to keep him levelheaded and made him realize that going in search of gold was not the way of life for a married man with a family.

Well, he was “free” now. Mama had died, and Delphinia was being shipped off with this stranger to some unknown place out West. Once again, she began to feel the tears well up in her eyes, but she made up her mind that she would not cry in front of her pa again. If he wanted to be rid of her, so be it. She had no choice in the matter.

Suddenly, she felt a hand reach across hers and heard Mr. Wilshire saying, “Here, I’ll take that out to the wagon for you. You tell your pa good-bye, and we’ll be on our way. I’ll be waiting outside.”

Delphinia glanced up. Her father’s anger had diminished, and he looked as though he might feel a bit of remorse. “I’m sorry, Pa. I know I shouldn’t have talked to you with such disrespect. Mama would be very unhappy with my behavior. But I don’t think she’d be happy with yours either,” she added. When he gave no response, she continued, “Don’t you think she’d want us to be together, now that she’s gone?”

BOOK: Threads of Love
5.59Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

Other books

Dream Tunnel by Arby Robbins
For Love Alone by Christina Stead
The Final Play by Rhonda Laurel
Faith by Michelle Larks
Sea of Suspicion by Toni Anderson
The Man with the Iron Heart by Harry Turtledove
Noble Pursuits by Chautona Havig
Color Mage (Book 1) by Anne Marie Lutz