Monday, January 20, 2014

Through the Waters . . . by Gabbie

Here is a story by a brand-new fan. Until Christmas, she had never heard of the Circle C Adventures. Enjoy. Yes, and sorry! I am working my way through the fan stories and it is taking me a while.


 The cries for help rang in Andi’s ears as she galloped toward town—toward help. It wasn’t for nothing that she had trained Taffy to be a racer. Now she would be the only one who could alert the townspeople to the coming danger…

“Help! Help!” This time the plea for help was real, and she was in town. Andi awoke from her daydream to see a young boy she had seen in Miss Hall’s class face-to-face with none other than Johnny Wilson.
            “Johnny, you touch that kid and I’ll…” Andi spun around to face the bully.
            “Oh, you’re tough, are you? Well try me, Miz Calamity Jane. Go ahead. I’m up for a fight.”
            The tormenting Wilson boy’s taunting was just too much for Andi. Johnny would get his calamity all right.
            “Real men don’t fight women,” said Andi. “But no one said it can’t go the other way.”
            As if caught smack dab in a buffalo stampede, Johnny found himself flat on his back in the dust. Apparently the fall knocked the wind out of him, because he didn’t retaliate.
            “Andi.”
It was no-nonsense Chad. His eyes said If Mother only knew…
            “We’re going home. Now.”
            “Well, Andi,” Johnny taunted, now that he could speak again. “Maybe you’re not a high-and-mighty Carter after all. I’m sure your high-falutin’ lawyer brother will love to hear about what his precious little sister just did.”
            Andi clenched her fists. Even in her anger, she knew he was right. But it was all she could do to stop herself from lashing out at the bully.
            “You no-good, rotten….” Andi began, before a hard squeeze from Chad silenced her.
                                                   ~U~

            “You’re such a good girl.” Andi buried her head in Taffy’s mane and breathed in the warm scent of horse. There was nothing like it. She sighed.
            I wish I hadn’t lit into Johnny like I did yesterday. Why am I the way I am? Melinda’s such a lady, and Mother’s so gentle. I try to get people out of trouble, but I just get into it myself. Maybe I am just a disgrace to the Carter name.
            Andi heard footsteps behind her. She turned around, expecting to see Chad again. Instead, Mitch walked up and stood behind her.
            “You don’t know?” her gentle older brother asked.
            Don’t know what? Is Chad mad at me again? What did I do?
            “Aunt Rebecca is coming for a visit. Mother just got the telegram.”
            Inwardly, Andi wanted to holler with frustration. But she managed an “Oh.”
            “You’ll have to help Mother and Melinda entertain her. Chad and I are going out on the range to help the hands with the cattle.”
            “What about me? Can’t I go with you? I’d be more trouble here than there!”
            Mitch seemed to be envisioning Andi spilling boiling-hot tea on their aunt’s bed or falling asleep reading her a long, boring book. But he also knew that a cattle drive was no place for a girl, spunky or not.
            “I’m sorry, Andi. I’d love to let you go, but not this time.”
            “Oh, Mitch!” Andi wailed. “How will I survive?”
“Well,” said Mitch,  “You’ll just have to try to behave. And,” Mitch added, “There will be no funny business.”
            “Oh…did Chad tell you about Johnny Wilson?”           
Mitch’s eyes, serious yet twinkling, told her that he had.

~U~

           
Andi felt that she would rather be in Death Valley without a drop of water than in the dining room with a full teacup. She could think of about a million things she’d rather be doing, and discussing Godey’s Lady’s Book while drinking tea was…well, not her cup of tea.
            But, like it or not, guests had to be entertained. And it wasn’t as if Andi didn’t love her aunt. It was just difficult to stay interested in a conversation that didn’t include ranch life or anything that interested Andi. But I must try to be a lady, she reminded herself as she sat with a painted-on smile.
          The conversation dragged on and on. Bustles and trains, ruffles and lace…until Andi was brought back to attention. Her aunt’s tone worried her.
          “I feel…a little faint…” said Aunt Rebecca. “Elizabeth, I hope you don’t mind if I rest for awhile.”
          “Oh, certainly not,” Mother assured her. “Most likely the travel was a bit strenuous. Nila will show you to your room.”

~U~

          “Andi, Andi! Wake up! It’s your aunt…she’s muy enfermo—very ill!” Rosa’s urgent voice woke Andi at what must have been past midnight.
          Andi sat up drowsily. She suddenly remembered what her aunt had said during tea. No, she thought. No!
          Rosa was nearly in tears. “Your madre…motherneeds your help.”
          Please, God, prayed Andi, let her be okay!

~U~

          Andi rushed to her aunt’s room. Elizabeth Carter stood by the bedside, her face white with worry.
          Andi shook with fear herself. Mother had nursed all their injuries and illnesses throughout the years…Chad’s chicken pox, Mitch’s broken leg, even the time Andi had gotten mixed up with a wasp’s nest. She was always calm and tranquil. Andi had never seen her mother so afraid.
          Her mother’s voice sliced through her fear. “Andrea—with the boys gone out on the range—will you get Doctor Weaver?”
          Andi shook inside and out. She had no time to be proud that Mother trusted her enough to let her take on this task. She couldn’t even think about how bad Aunt Rebecca’s illness must be. Otherwise Mother would never ask her to do something so dangerous.
 Thinking of riding in the dark brought her back to so many unpleasant experiences. Escaping from T.J. Silver. Being held hostage by Jed. Having Taffy stolen right out from under her.
“Yes, Mother,” she said, trying to sound more confident than she felt--trying not to think about how she felt.
“Go, child. May God be with you.”
“Si, vaya con Dios.” Nila echoed Elizabeth, clasping her hands as if in prayer.

~U~

          It had seemed to take ages to saddle Taffy, even though Andi knew it had probably been less than five minutes. She climbed onto her beloved palomino’s back, hoping Taffy couldn’t sense her fear.
          Steady, Andi. Steady. She squeezed Taffy’s sides, urging her forward. Darkness like tar grabbed the path ahead, holding it in its terrible grip. Andi tried to fight the fear. Help me, God. I can’t do this alone.
          Andi’s daydream of a few days before returned in vivid detail. She was the only one who could save the townspeople…
          Then a thought sprung into her mind. The river.
          Crossing a shallow river would bring her to Doctor Weaver’s house more quickly. But ever since that terrible run-in with T.J. Silver, she had feared water as much as horses feared rattlesnakes. Which was quite a bit.
          Of all shortcuts, why did crossing the river have to be the fastest? God, she prayed, I can’t do this. Don’t make me do this.
          Her thoughts flashed to the Monday before. What was that passage Mr. Foster had read? When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee…
          Normally—Andi was ashamed to admit—Mr. Foster’s Bible reading bored her. But here, alone in the darkness, she could hear the monotone of his voice in her head just as surely as if he were there with her. And it was comforting.
          It stirred her on to action. “Walk on, Taffy. Walk on.”
          All too soon Andi urged Taffy into the river. It was long and shallow, true, but it was still water. Andi clenched her teeth and forced herself to look straight ahead.
          Every step Taffy took brought the realization that Andi’s horse might trip, that they might go down. What if no one found us?
          But her determination willed her to go forward. She silently repeated the Bible passage in her head. I will be with thee, I will be with thee…
After a century, or perhaps five minutes—Andi didn’t know which—she found herself on the other side. The rest would be easy.
          The last thing she remembered that night was Doctor Weaver picking her up and placing her on his horse with him while leading Taffy behind. And then came sleep.
         
~U~

          “Andi! Andi! Wake up.” It was Rosa. But she wasn’t using the terror-filled voice of the night before.
          “Andi…tu tia—your aunt—she’s getting better!”
          Andi tried to sit up. She ached from last night’s ride. The memory of last night was slowly coming back.
          “Oh, Rosa!”
~U~

“Doctor Weaver said that you were just in time,” Mother explained. “Aunt Rebecca is not out of danger yet, but he says that he was able to start giving her medicine in time to save her.”
Andi smiled sheepishly.
“Andrea, I’m so grateful you are my daughter. I can’t think of another girl who could do what you did last night. You saved your aunt’s life.”
          “Then it’s…all right that I like to be the way I am? I’m not like other girls.”
          Mother smiled. “The Lord made you strong and courageous. Although I don’t think He intended for you to roughhouse with bullies.”
          Oh, did Chad tell Mother, too?
          The twinkle in Mother’s eyes told her he had.

 

26 comments:

  1. I love it! Great story! Is there more?

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  2. That is the whole story. But another story will be coming soon from her sister, Madison.

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    1. Ok, thanks. Mrs. Marlow, does Cory have a mother that is alive. I forget.

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    2. Ok! :) I'll have fun with that one! I'll think about it for awhile and send you a quick e-mail when I've figured it out, how does that sound? :)

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  3. OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!! Gabbie you are one of the best writers we have had yet! No kidding. I love the part when you said, "Discussing Godey’s Lady’s Book while drinking tea was…well, not her cup of tea." hahah :D that's awesome! Great job...

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    1. Thank you so much, Faith! :)

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  4. Haha! I loved the ending! I get the feeling that Andi's mom was quite a bit like Andi when she was younger. Great job Gabbie! Is Dr.Weaver related to Riley Weaver?
    Mrs M,
    Did Andi's Mother ever live near the Texas panhandle?

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    1. No, Riley is not related to Dr. Weaver. He is the doctor in the CCA, and Riley Weaver was the last name a fan used for her story. :-)
      No, Andi's mother is from Pittsburgh (or Philidelphia, I can't remember which!). LOL

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    2. Mrs. M, didn't you say Riley Coder was better?
      (you needed a new last name, and I think in the comments awhile back, you said Coder was a good name?) GREAT JOB Gabbie!!! I loved it! :D

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  5. Wow! That was excellent Gabbie! I enjoyed that story SOOO much! I really loved how you incorporated that Bible verse into it. It was a nice touch.

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    1. Great story Gabby I really liked it:-) Welcome!!!!

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  6. Gabby, this story was very well written! I really enjoyed it all. I hope you'll write some other stories for us to read. :)
    And welcome to the Circle C . . . blog, that is. ;)

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  7. Great job Gabbie! I love the story. I especially like the part with Andi and Aunt Rebecca in the parlor! You are an awesome writer!

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  8. Welcome Gabbie! Nice story :)

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  9. Thank you so much, everybody, for the kind words and the welcome to the blog! :)

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  10. Great Story Gabbie!

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  11. That was a REALLY good story! I am surprised by how good that story was! How old are you? I am 13.

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    1. Thanks Bekah! I am almost 19. But I have been making up and writing stories for years. :)

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Let Andi know what you think!