Avery's parents came here today. They are beside themselves with worry. His father, Mr. Longworth wants to ride to that area himself. His mother wants him to wait till we hear something more, then get together a posse to go look for him. Mrs. Longworth held Benjamin after I finished feeding him. She said he looks exactly like Avery did as an infant. He fell asleep in her arms and she didn't want me to take him. I felt I had to be strong for them. I told them that Avery will be home. I feel it. I feel that he is alive and will be coming back to us soon.
About an hour after they left, my parents arrived. They were upset and rushed into my arms. Esther was with them. She said, "I brought my clothes I am staying here with you until Avery is back."
Mother nodded, "Rachel, don't argue. Esther is staying because I won't have you here alone. Or else I will stay with you myself."
Father held me close to him, "Any word at all honey?"
"Avery's parents were just here. Mr. Longworth wants to get together a posse if the marshal doesn't find him."
"Oh, that will take too long. Have you heard from the marshal?"
"Not yet. Father, I am scared. I really love Avery. I know I was not crazy about getting married when you sprung this marriage on me. But..........I have fallen in love with him. I can't lose him now," I burst into tears and he held me for a few minutes till I stopped.
Mother spoke up, still holding Benjamin, "Rachel, we have to think positive. If you think he has had harm come to him, then he may. If you keep believing that he is safe and was able to get away from anyone attacking him, then that is what will be. Remember it is your faith, and what you believe, is what will be."
I nodded and wiped my tears away, "I was trying to think that Mother. It is hard though with no word." I went to her and took Benjamin out of her arms and laid him down in his daybed, "How about some food? I have plenty of that and can't eat it all myself. Father? Esther, come help me." I felt better taking charge of myself and my house.
Later after Mother and Father had left, Esther and I sat in the kitchen drinking tea and eating cookies that Mother had brought for me. We were talking about things we had done as children and memories we had. Then Esther remember something I hadn't thought of in years, "Rachel, remember the time Grandfather was missing? He was gone for over two months?"
"Yes, he had gone to pick up some tools he had made special and it was on the other side of the state." I continued, "His horse came home without him....."
Esther interrupted me, "Everyone thought for sure he was dead and we would never see him again. Then a week or so after his horse came home he just walked into the house like it was any other day!"
I finished the story for her excitedly, remembering that time when we were all mourning for our grandfather. He could be gruff with everyone, but would sneak me a piece of peppermint candy when nobody was looking, "He had hit his head on a rock when his horse had gotten spooked and threw him off. When he awoke he just turned around and walked toward home. Took him weeks. Never asked for help from anyone."
I said to myself a little prayer and asked the Lord to tell my Grandfather thank you for reminding me of that incident. I was able to sleep for the first time since Avery was missing that night, quite soundly.
Copyright © 2010 Kathleen G. Lupole