Here are a couple of short scenes. Andi showed up for dinner, all wild-haired and messy and was excused to go upstairs to change (which she doesn't for a bit). In the book, her mother knocks. But I originally dragged it out a bit longer . . .
Andrea Carter and the Long Ride Home
Lost Scene #4
The knock on her door a few minutes later startled Andi, who as yet had done nothing to make herself presentable. Fearing it was her mother checking up on her, she sprang up, stripped off her overalls, and slipped a petticoat over her head. As she reached for a suitable dress, a second knock---more insistent this time---sounded, and a familiar voice brought her up short.
“Andi? It’s Justin. May I come in?”
Andi sat down on her bed and let the dress fall from her hand. Anger at her brother and his unwelcome guest welled up inside the girl like a geyser. Why hadn’t he given her some warning about his return?
“No,” she finally answered.
"May I ask why? I'd like to talk to you." Her brother’s voice was calm and reasonable, like always. Nothing ever upset him. He was a good listener too. Any other time Andi would have opened her door, thrown herself into his arms, and gladly unloaded all her petty complaints on him.
But not tonight.
"I . . . I'm not dressed,” came her lame reply. She looked down at her full white petticoat and frowned. It wasn't much of an excuse, but it was the best she could come up with on short notice. She suspected Justin knew better, also.
"I see,” he remarked through the paneled door. "Honey, I can wait as long as you like until---"
"Oh, Justin, just go away. Please!"
Justin heard his sister burst into tears and slowly turned away. With a shrug of helplessness, he returned to the dining room.
Elizabeth saw the look on her son’s face that meant he had been unsuccessful. This has gone far enough, she decided silently. "If you will excuse me for a moment." She stood up and left the room.
Elizabeth did not even give her daughter the courtesy of a knock. She opened the door and found Andi lying on her bed, crying in earnest. She was quite an unappealing sight.
Lost Scene #5
In the published book, after Elizabeth talks to Andi and insists she join the family at the table, the scene ends. The next chapter begins with Andi sliding down the door and so glad THAT meal is over with. A few back flashes come to her mind, but that's about it. Here is the original "supper scene" I deleted from the final book.
Andi rejoined her family in the dining room a few minutes later, dressed in her best and quiet to a fault. She found her seat next to Melinda and sat down, then began to dish herself some meat and potatoes. She didn't dare look at the senator. She had seen the amusement in his eyes during her introduction earlier. She knew he must be thinking all sorts of unflattering things about her and the poor reflection she must be on her family.
On the contrary, Senator Farley was impressed. "I'm glad you could join us after all, Miss Carter," he commented with a twinkle in his eye. He couldn’t help but notice the remarkable transformation of a wild and reckless tomboy into a lovely young lady with perfect manners. He wondered how she had managed it in less than ten minutes. He hadn’t thought it possible. His own young daughter, Sophia, took an interminable amount of time just to ready herself for school each morning---and Sophia had her own maid.
"Yes, sir," Andi replied quietly, acknowledging the senator’s comment with a polite nod. She went back to her meal without another word.
The mealtime conversation flowed around Andi in a soft murmur. She was grateful for that and hoped she could finish quickly and be allowed to escape either back to her room or---better yet---to the barn to be with Taffy. She listened idly as Melinda asked the senator about the latest styles in the nation’s capital, and heard the man respond with genuine interest. A few minutes later there was polite laughter over some ranch-related story Mitch told, and Andi was almost ready to admit that supper perhaps wasn’t a disaster after all.
"Say, Chad," Justin remarked suddenly. Andi’s ears pricked up. "Speaking of what’s new on the ranch, I noticed you finally got hold of that stallion you've been itching to buy. Did it cost us as much as you figured it would?"
"Unfortunately," Chad replied. "But he's worth it."
"How is he working out? I know the senator would enjoy a demonstration of what you've accomplished with the animal." He turned to him. "What Chad can’t do with a horse can’t be done, Jim.”
"I would certainly be interested in a demonstration. I saw the horse briefly when we rode up." He whistled. "Gorgeous animal."
"He's got a few rough edges yet," came Chad's hesitant reply. "I'm afraid he's not up to any kind of exhibition the next few days. He's still mighty jittery."
Andi groaned inwardly. Justin had inadvertently chosen the worst possible subject for table-talk. She glanced up quickly and caught Chad's eye. Please change the subject, Chad! she pleaded silently.
Justin plunged on. "Is that where the new corral fence came from? His rough edges?" He indicated the direction of the yard. "I couldn't help noticing the new railings on the section by the barn. He didn't break out, did he?" Now Justin looked concerned. "That would be too bad if he did."
"No." Chad glanced quickly at Andi, then away. "He didn't break out. There was an unexpected concern this morning, but I got it under control." Chad swallowed. He felt uncomfortable with this conversation. If he wasn’t careful, the reason for the stallion's behavior today would come out, shaming Andi even more. And Chad, in spite of his quick temper, loved his sister and was not willing to let her foolish actions of that morning be aired more publicly than they already had. The ranch hands were acquainted with his sister's shortcomings. The senator was not.
"Well," Justin continued, helping himself to seconds, "as long as he doesn't get out. No telling what could happen if---"
"I said I had it under control, Justin," Chad broke in, silencing his brother with a look.
Justin frowned, surprised at his brother’s tone. Even the senator could feel the tension in the air.
"Pass the biscuits, Andi," Mitch broke in. He really didn't want any, but he figured somebody had to do something to turn this conversation around.
The senator smiled across the table at the youngest Carter as she handed the basket of biscuits to her brother. He wanted to make her feel comfortable, to make her forget her embarrassment earlier. Surely there was some way to draw her into the conversation.
"And you, Andrea?" he asked lightly. "What do think of your brother's new stallion?"
"He's all right, I guess," Andi answered with a shrug.
The senator grinned. "Only all right? He's more than that, I think. Don't you like horses?"
When Andi simply nodded and continued eating, the senator knew he was fighting a losing battle. He turned to Elizabeth.“This is a delicious meal, Mrs. Carter. I wouldn’t say no if you were to offer me another slice of beef.” He smiled as the plate reached his hands, then he turned to ask Mitch a question.
Justin missed little. He knew something was wrong when his sister did not latch onto the subject of horses. Any other time a question about horses would have Andi and Melinda dominating the entire supper conversation. But even Melinda was unusually quiet tonight. In fact, everybody was quiet tonight. Something unpleasant had happened, and it was much more serious than his sister coming to the table dressed like a scruffy tomboy.
Justin was willing to bet it had something to do with Chad's new horse and the broken corral fence. He imagined the worst and suddenly realized why Andi had come in late for supper. Chad must have gotten after her for something really big to cause her to be gone most of the day. It was the only explanation for her not being here the minute he rode in this afternoon. Could she have teased the horse? Surely not! But then, all she had to do was get too close to him for Chad's liking.
Justin determined he would find out at the very earliest opportunity. He caught Andi's gaze, smiled sympathetically at her, and returned to his meal.