FEATURED TITLE OF THE MONTH
By D. K. Graham
The skies were gray; the ominous dark clouds were threatening to open up and heavily drench the rather large crowd that was gathered around the open grave. Pamela’s thoughts, which should have been riveted on the words being spoken by Reverend Callaghan, were wandering instead. As she stood there, the sun peeked momentarily from behind the angry clouds, glinting off her copper-colored hair as it would from a newly minted penny. She had covered her head with a black lace scarf, as befitting a new widow, but her long, unruly red curls peeped out from beneath it. As quickly as it had appeared, the sun faded back behind the ever blackening clouds.
How could this have happened, and so suddenly? There were no signs, no time to get prepared. He was so young, only thirty-four. What am I going to do now? I wonder if it hurt. Random thoughts, contemplations that probably had also gone through the minds of many widows and widowers before her, but right now they only pertained to her. She was all that mattered. She looked around at those who were standing near her, many … no most … of whom had tears running down their cheeks.
Why can’t I cry? Am I a freak? I did love him. I really did! Okay, so I wasn’t really madly in love with him, but I did love him, and cared about him a lot. I should be bawling my eyes out! I can’t even blink out a single tear. I guess I had better at least dab at my eyes so no one thinks I’m some sort of callous non-caring ninny. She raised a tissue to her eyes and pretended to wipe away tears that weren’t present.
All too soon, or maybe not soon enough, the minister urged her to step forward and throw the first handful of dirt over the lowered coffin. She did so automatically, and tossed on top of the dirt a white rose that she had been carrying. She stood and looked at the coffin, unable to comprehend that Bill’s remains were inside, and were about to be buried forever.
Someone stepped up next to her and took her elbow, urging her to walk away from the grave so that other family members and friends could follow her actions.
She looked up into the face of her cousin Steve and gave him a weak smile as she allowed herself to be led back to her place at the front of the crowd.
The rest of the day proceeded in a blur. Pamela planted a smile on her face and barely saw the long line of those offering their condolences, some of whom leaned over and hugged her and kissed her on her cheek. Later, she wouldn’t remember who did, or even those who just shook her hand while murmuring a few polite words and moving on.
She was exhausted by the time the last person had passed by her and proceeded on to the tables that had mysteriously been laden with food.
Steve stood by her in the receiving line. He was the only relative she had who seemed to care anything about her, and he had been a great help to her during the past few days following Bill’s heart attack and subsequent death.
Her own parents didn’t seem to know nor care what was happening in her life. She only knew how to contact them through their cell phone numbers, and believed them to be somewhere in Europe at the time she became a widow. They surely wouldn’t take the time to attend her husband’s funeral. Her older sister Julie lived somewhere in Canada with her boyfriend. Pamela didn’t even have a phone number to reach her. Several years earlier, Julie had distanced herself from Pamela, and as far as Pamela knew, their parents as well. As far as she knew, Steve was her only other living relative.
Bill’s brothers and sisters lived out of state, and they did all come back home for the funeral, but they weren’t around to help her jump through all of the legal hoops that she had been facing, and would still be facing in the days and weeks ahead. Right now Steve was her rock.
"Cloud Three" is available for $2.99 in the Kindle store by clicking on http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00NF2UW44.
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It is now available at Smashwords.com https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/520973, as well as at their affiliates, Apple iBooks, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, OverDrive, Flipkart, Oyster, Scribd, Baker & Taylor's Blio and Axis360 (ibraries)!
This compilation of all three books of the Heartland Trilogy follows twins Jaina and Jainell Wilson as they discover each other’s existence in their teens, through many adventures including bringing to justice the people who murdered their parents, coming to terms with the deaths of relatives and friends and divorces, and rejoicing with them through marriages, babies, and grandbabies!
Set in and around beautiful Brown County, Kansas, anyone who has lived in, or longed to live in, small town America will be able to easily insert themselves into the story, becoming friends with all of the characters!
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