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 LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)

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bethandmanly
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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:56 am

Really not my thing. Transformers, X-Men, Fantastic Four all that stuff really not anything I could get into. But my son loves that stuff.


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Mon Aug 13, 2007 12:37 pm

something real simple... and no cheryl you didn't step
on my toes


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Mon Aug 13, 2007 7:59 pm

The train pulled to a screeching stop and hissed. Albert and Almanzo raced over to join Charles, Caroline, and Laura who were already on the platform.

“There she is!” screamed Laura, hugging Almanzo. She watched Mary exit the train, a tall, curly-headed girl in a pink dress holding tightly onto her hand. “Oh my gosh, there’s Susan!”

Returning to the days of her childhood, Laura hiked up her skirt and raced towards her sister. Throwing her arms around her, tears of joy slid down Laura’s face. “Oh Mary, I can’t believe you’re here!”

“You ran down the platform, didn’t you?” said Mary in an older sister voice that stung of admonishment.

“Yes.” The red tinge of embarrassment stained Laura’s cheeks.

“Susan honey, this is your Aunt Laura. Can you say hello please?”

“Hewo, Aunt Wauwa.”

Laura scooped up Susan in her arms. “Hello Susan. Your Uncle Manzo and I are so happy you could come for a visit.” Laura pointed to the end of the platform where everyone else waited. “See those people over there? That’s your Grandpa and Grandma Ingalls, your Uncle Manzo is the tall guy standing behind Grandpa, and your Uncle Albert has that big black tie on. He’s a doctor. Do you want to go meet them?”

Susan shook her head yes. She certainly wasn’t shy. Laura led Mary and Susan to the family and there were hugs and tears all around.

“I’ve got your bags darling,” said Charles.

“Thanks Pa. Are you sure it is okay for Susan and me to stay with you? We can always get a room at the hotel if you don’t have enough room for us?”

“Don’t even think of staying at a hotel.” Caroline hugged Mary again. “Carrie and Cassandra are more than happy to give up their beds for you. Your visit is all they’ve talked about since we got your letter. And they are so looking forward to playing with Susan.”

The group walked towards the wagons, thrilled to be together again. “Oh Mary, I can’t believe I almost forgot to tell you. Guess who is on his way here?”

“I can’t imagine.”

“Mr. Edwards. He’s coming for a visit too.”

“Did I hear someone call my name?” a gruff voice called from behind them.

Laura’s head whipped around. “Mr. Edwards!” Laura and Mary said in unison.

“Aw, come here Half-pint.” Mr. Edwards twirled Laura around in a circle. “Mary, yur purttier every time I see ya.”

Mary kissed his rough cheek. “I’m so glad you’re here. It makes this seem like home.”

Charles and Isaiah hugged each other, the two friends overjoyed at meeting up again. It seemed like forever since they had seen each other after going their separate ways the day Walnut Grove was destroyed.

“It’s good that you’re here Isaiah. Hop into the wagon. I’ve got a lot to tell you.”

*

“Well, I heard all about Walnut Grove bein rebuilt, but I didn't reckon I would know anyone livin there.” Isaiah sat at the kitchen table sipping hot coffee from the cup Caroline had given him. Charles nodded. “And yur sure ya wanna move back there?”

“It’s like a dream come true,” said Caroline, her face beaming with joy.

Charles grasped Caroline’s hand and smiled. “We were just waiting for Mary and Susan to get here. Almanzo and Albert are ready to set off as soon as we give them your answer. So, what do you say Isaiah, are you coming with us?”

To be continued…


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Mon Aug 13, 2007 8:41 pm

halfpint i have something for you.. close your eyes
no peeking can't stand for no peeking.. you can look
laura: oh mr edwards you got me lemon verbina.. thank you
mr edwards kisses laura.. hello almanzo hello isaiah
susan reminds me of alicia.. mary asks have you heard from them.. got a letter from grace telling me her marriage went bad
her husband was abusive... her alicia and carl might come to
walnutgrove... charles asks you miss her don't you
yes charles i do.. even tho a saloon will be at walnut grove
after what happened the last time i made a promise to myself
to stay clean... everyone was glad to hear that
grace said she might take me back the kids miss me
caroline tells mr edwards i know they do
a tear ran down mr edwards cheek... lets get going
ok almonzo said to be continued


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Mon Aug 13, 2007 8:42 pm

after writing this i almost cried


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Mon Aug 13, 2007 11:40 pm

It would be nice to see Grace and Isaiah back together.


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Sat Aug 18, 2007 3:00 pm

"You sure about this Isaiah?" Almanzo asked, his hand planted on Isaiah's shoulder. "There's no guarantee after all this time that Grace would take you back."

"I know that, but I havta try. We had somethin special once. Maybe we can have it again." Tears swam in Isaiah's eyes.

"Is Carl still living at home? He must be twenty years old now." Laura thought back to all the silly schemes she and her old friend had hatched.

"He doesn't want Grace and Alicia livin all alone in the city. We ain't talked much over the years, but he wrote me a few weeks back and told me he hoped he could convince his Ma to move back to Walnut Grove. He would feel safer with them there. A boy his age, maybe he wants to explore the world a little."

"He always was one for adventures." Laura chuckled as she remembered how they all got stuck on a runaway caboose and Charles and Isaiah had to save them.

"The thought of seein Grace again makes me nervous. No clue if she'll like me now any more than she did the day she tossed me out."

Laura's arms reached around Isaiah's neck and she pulled him close. "Oh Mr. Edwards, you're not that man anymore. Besides, you'll never know if you don't try. You said so yourself."

"Well, there ain't no reason for me to stay here with all you folks packin up for Walnut Grove, now is there?" Isaiah slammed his hand down on the table. "By gosh, I guess I'm goin to Walnut Grove."

Isaiah stood up from the table and grabbed Laura's arm. He twirled her around as if they were dancing, though Isaiah's jig couldn't be considered a real dance. "Where is my goddaughter?"

"Rose is with Jenny. I didn't want to scare Susan with too many people at the train station." Laura glanced over at Susan surrounded by Carrie, Grace, and Cassandra. "Though it doesn't look like she minds company."

"When are we plannin to move out?" asked Isaiah.

"Most of my patients have already been referred to Dr. Lawrence," said Albert, "but Mrs. Hathaway refuses to stop coming. I think she believes if she keeps making appointments I won't leave. I can be ready the day after tomorrow."

All the men in the room nodded. "Okay then," said Charles. "We'll leave first light on Friday."

To be continued...


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Sat Sep 15, 2007 1:14 pm

I guess everyone is staying in Burr Oak for the rest of their lives. LOL!


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Fri Sep 28, 2007 1:27 pm

The morning sun peeked through the window of Laura and Almanzo's parlor, shining upon the small pile of belongings still to be placed on the wagon.

Laura walked out onto the porch. "Do you want the last bit of coffee?" she asked Almanzo.

"Naw, I'm practically swimmin now." Almanzo chuckled. His blue eyes sparkled with excitement. "I can't believe we're goin home." Scooping Laura up in his arms, he kissed her. "I love ya."

"I love you too," said Laura, a smile curling the corners of her mouth.

"It's a good thing we'll be away from the city," started Almanzo, as Jenny walked onto the porch. "We won't have as many beaux to be concerned about."

Jenny's cheeks flushed crimson. "Oh, Unlce Manzo."

Laura strolled over to her niece and ran her hand down the length of Jenny's hair. "That's just your Unlce Manzo's way of telling you how pretty you've become."

Jenny gazed sheepishly down at Laura. She stood several inches taller than her aunt. "Thank you Aunt Laura."

"Are you excited about leaving Burr Oak?"

"I've made a lot of nice friends here, but Walnut Grove was the place we became a family...and I would like to visit Papa's grave again. It seems like he's been gone forever."

Laura pulled Jenny into an embrace. "He can never be gone as long as you carry him in your heart."

Almanzo pecked Jenny's cheek. "Your Pa woulda been real proud of ya." Jenny smiled. "And so am I."

"Can we go see Grandma and Grandpa now?" asked Rose from inside the house.

They chuckled at the interruption. Almanzo wrapped his arms around Jenny and Laura. "Let's get the rest of this stuff on the wagon."

*

Albert handed the key to the house over to the new owners. "I hope you'll be as happy here as we were," he said.

Mr. Butler scratched his head. "Then why are you leaving?"

"We're heading back home," replied Michelle, beaming with joy. She pulled Sarah and Molly closer as Albert smiled at his growing family. He figured Michelle was probably about 4 months along by the size of her round belly.

Mr. Butler shook Albert's hand. "Good luck to you."

"You too." Albert turned to his family. "Up in the wagon ladies. We have to be at Pa's in five minutes."

*

Charles tightened the rope around the rocking chair he had strapped to the wagon. Caroline reached around Charles's back and embraced him. "I wish James was coming with us."

"Oh Caroline, the boy will be along shortly. He wants Sarah to get married in the place she grew up."

"I know." Tears swam in Caroline's eyes. "It just doesn't seem right leaving him, even for a week."

Charles turned and pulled Caroline into his arms. "What would you have done if he decided to stay here?"

"What every mother does..smile and wish him well."

Cupping Caroline's chin in his hands, Charles kissed her lips tenderly. "Then do that today. Let him start his life off right and then make a new home for his family in Walnut Grove."

Caroline wiped the wet streaks off her face. "I'll go wash the breakfast dishes and then we'll be all set when the children get here."

The tears Charles had hidden for Caroline's sake flowed down Charles's cheeks. He knew how Caroline felt about James staying behind. And he couldn't get rid of that nagging feeling that James might decide to stay in Burr Oak permanently.

To be continued...

(Sorry, I need a fan fiction fix)


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Mon Oct 29, 2007 12:01 pm

The journey had been long and difficult; muddy roads left behind by the almost constant rain bogged down their wagon wheels, and the men worked together to pry them out of the muck. On the final morning of the trip, Almanzo, Albert, Isaiah, and Charles sat around the fire sipping the last bits of coffee from their cups.

"Looks like the rain might be over," said Almanzo, squinting as he glanced up at the clear sky.

Isaiah spit tobacco juice that sizzled on the hot rocks surrounding the fire. "Yep, it's gonna be a fine day."

The men nodded and Charles's bright smile lit up his face. "We should be in Walnut Grove before sunset."

"Well, we won't get there at all if you four don't stop staring at one another and get those horses moving," joked Caroline, dumping water over the fire.

Charles scooped Caroline into his arms. "Don't worry darlin, I promise we'll be sleeping in Walnut Grove tonight."

Laura and Michelle snuck into their husbands' arms. "I can't wait," they said together.

To be continued...


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Thu Nov 08, 2007 6:38 pm

Hi Everyone! I am new here, but have been lurking for quite a while. The Fan Fiction is my favorite area, so I am going to try my hand at adding to the Continuing Story.
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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Thu Nov 08, 2007 11:26 pm

What a nice story, people! I should like to see it at the screen, LOL! I know it will never be this way, since most of the actors who played the most important characters are dead by now..But let me dream a little! Cloud 9

Vanesa.


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Fri Feb 01, 2008 12:36 am

"Hello Mother."

"Oh, hello Nellie darling," Harriet said into the receiver. "How nice it is to hear your voice. How are Jenny and Benny?"

"That's Benjamin, Mother, and the children are fine."

Nellie hesitated, telling Harriet would make it seem real and she wasn't sure she wanted all this to be real just yet.

"What's the matter darling?"

"Percival's mother passed away two days ago. He's so upset and the kids walk around crying all the time."

"I'm so sorry. Edna was such a lovely woman. I knew she was sick, but I didn't think she was that bad off."

Nellie sighed. "She's never been the same since Benjamin died."

"The poor dear. At least she is with him now."

"I was also calling to tell you something else."

"Hold on a second dear." The muffled sound of Harriet's voice carried through the covered receiver. "Nancy, stop playing for a minute honey, I'm on the phone with your sister."

"I don't care. Nellie never liked me anyway."

The dreadful sound of pounded piano keys played out of tune carried through the house louder than before.

"Hold on again dear. Nancy, I asked you to stop playing so I can talk to Nellie."

The cover slammed over the piano keys.

"Now that's enough young lady. You go to your room," said Nels.

"All you care about is your precious Nellie," screamed Nancy. "You hate me!" she cried as she stomped up to her bedroom.

Harriet heard Nellie chuckling. "And what is so funny?"

"I can't believe Nancy still cries about Father hating her. It's obvious you both love that child...though I don't know why."

"How can you say such a thing? Nancy is just."

"A child. I know Mother." Nellie's deep breath vibrated through the phone. "The other reason I called is to let you know that Percival, the children, and I are coming for a visit."

"Oh," replied Harriet. "When were you planning on coming?"

"We're leaving tomorrow."

Harriet twirled a strand of pearls around her fingers. "I see."

"I thought you would be happy."

"I am darling, it's just."

"Just what?"

"Well, your father and I were planning a little vacation and we're leaving in two days."

"Really?" The surprise was evident in Nellie's voice. "Where are you going?

"Walnut Grove." Harriet waited for Nellie's response. "We thought it would be nice to see what the town looks like. The train runs right through town."

"I wish I had known. I wouldn't have made plans to come see you."

Harriet thought Nellie sounded as if she would burst into tears. "What's wrong Nellie?"

"Oh Mother, Percival and his sisters have been fighting ever since Edna died."

"Over what?"

"The family business. Percival was toying with selling it now that both of his parents were gone, but his sisters went berserk. I thought getting away from New York for a while might do all of us a world of good."

"Why don't you meet us there?"

"Where? In Walnut Grove?"

"Yes, in Walnut Grove. You already told me you wanted to see it. Besides, what better place for a family reunion than there. Doc Baker is back in town, and Charles and his family are moving back. So is Laura and Almanzo and Albert and Michelle. Wouldn't it be nice to see everyone again? No one could love the town as much as we all did."

"You're right Mother. We'll leave tomorrow as planned and meet you in Walnut Grove."

"Oh, you've made me so happy darling. I think I might just close the store for a bit so Willie, Rachel, and Nancy can come with us."

to be continued...


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Fri Feb 01, 2008 4:18 pm

(Sidenote - I went back to my first entry to this story, from about a year ago, to edit a little - now Albert's children are three and one, since somewhere earlier it mentioned that he was only 21, somehow I missed that the first time reading it but I was reading back over the story today).

The sun was just beginning to set as the wagon party drove into town. Laura drew in her breath; the last time she had seen Walnut Grove, the only building still standing was the church. It had been heartbreaking to watch the mercantile, the mill, and hers and Almanzo’s boarding house be blown to pieces. For a long time, Laura worried that her memories would be lost with them. That was so many years ago and now, she knew the memories lived on.

A shrill whistle blew as the wagons stopped outside a new mercantile. Startled, Laura wrapped her arms around Rose. Rose looked at her curiously. “What’s wrong, Mama?” she asked.

“It – it just startled me,” Laura said, glancing at Almanzo apprehensively.

”But we hear the trains all the time,” Rose pointed out, from her between her parents on the wagon seat.

Laura swallowed hard. “It’s just different, hearing it here,” she said.

“Are you all right, Beth?” Almanzo questioned her. He could tell how she was feeling.

Laura just smiled. “Never mind. As long as our family is all together in the place we love, we’ll be fine.”

“It’ll take some getting used to is all,” Almanzo pointed out.

Before Laura could reply, a jubilant voice called out, “Ingalls! Ingalls!” And Laura felt tears sneak into her eyes as a man she had known for most of her life came out of the building beside the store. “Doctor Baker,” she exclaimed, as Almanzo set the break and began to climb out of the wagon. “Manly, hurry!”

Almanzo laughed. “I am hurrying, darling.” He reached up for Rose, and Laura jumped down the from her seat on the other side, lifting her dress clear above her knees so as not to snag it. She raced to Doctor Baker, who was lifting Baby Grace down from her parents’ wagon. The families gathered excitedly around Doctor Baker, everyone hugging, laughing and talking at the same time. Both Laura and her mother had to stop several times to wipe their eyes.

“Albert,” Doc Baker said, turning to the young man before him. “Land’s sakes boy, look how you’ve grown up!” He shook his hand vigorously. “It’s a pleasure to have you here finally, partner.”

Albert laughed. “The pleasure’s all mine.” Then he turned to Michelle, who was holding Molly in her arms. “This is our little girl, Molly. And, her older sister, Sarah.”

Doctor Baker grinned widely. “Congratulations! And from the looks of things, baby number three is on the way?”

Michelle laughed. “You could say that. He – or she – couldn’t wait for me to get off the wagon, that’s for sure.”

Laughing his big hearty laugh, Doc Baker said, “Well, I’m glad you’re finally here then! Let me show you all to the boarding house – you can all get settled and then I’ll show you around the town. You won’t be believe all the developments!”

Laura felt her butterflies in her stomach; they were finally home!




"It is still best to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasures and to be cheerful and have courage when things go wrong."
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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Sat Feb 09, 2008 1:27 am

Laura couldn't believe how much things had changed in the five years they had been gone. It was like arriving in a whole new place. The only things that looked familiar were the small grove of Walnut trees along with the wooden sign that bore the town's name and the bank building that had been built by Charles when Ebenezer Sprague came to town. Townsfolk walked in and out to transact their business with the new banker.

"Does anyone know what happened to Mr. Sprague?" asked Laura.

"He died about a year ago," said Doc Baker, the smile falling from his face. "But part of him lives on in Walnut Grove."

Laura's head cocked to one side. "What do you mean?"

"Sprague always had money. As he got older, he began donating books and Bibles to the schools and churches in Spring Valley, where he lived until he died."

A thoughtful expression came over Doc Baker's time worn face. "About three months ago, I received a telegram that I had to go to Spring Valley for the reading of Sprague's will. Still don't know how they found me."

Placing his hands on his hips, Doc Baker smiled the smile that Laura always loved to see when she was a girl. It let her know that everything would be all right.

"Sprague donated enough money to the Walnut Grove schools to purchase history and math books, readers, and spellers. And he did it in your honor too, Laura."

Laura's eyes widened in amazement. "My honor?"

"His will stated that he wanted to repay the generous gift of friendship you gave him, even when he didn't deserve it."

Laura choked back the tears and struggled to swallow away the lump in her throat. Charles beamed with pride at his daughter. He remembered how Laura had turned the old miser around.

"Oh look Laura," shouted Grace with excitement. "There's a library next door to the Post Office."

"You can thank Sprague for that too," said Doc Baker. "The building and all the books inside came from the money he bequethed to the town."

"I can't believe he remembered me after all these years." Laura glanced up at Almanzo. "He left town when we moved to Winoka and I never saw him again after that."

"Well, ya musta made a big impression on him." Almanzo pecked her cheek.

The train station and the tracks ran along the left side of the grove of trees. The hisses and sputtering of train engines waiting impatiently to be on their way seemed foreign to Laura. Walnut Grove used to be the place they returned to when they needed to get away from the noise in Winoka; now there was more noise here than she remembered from their time in Dakota Territory. The train tracks wandered away through the old schoolyard and what used to be woods. A small building attached to the train station was home to the Telegraph Office and probably served as the telegrapher's home.

Across from the train station was a row of wooden stores and buildings of various heights looking like soldiers in formation. There was a hotel, the saloon--which even at this hour of the day had men wandering inside as the tinkling of piano keys drifted into the street, Bray's Mercantile, and the Post Office.

Directly in front of them stood a huge two-story general store with the name "Lawson's General Store" painted on the sign in big, black letters. A red schoolhouse stood to the left of the hotel, its bell reflecting the sun that was beginning it's afternoon descent.

The bridge into town had been widened and it laid between the library on the right side and the bank on the left. Next to the bank was the boarding house, then the livery, and finally the third general store, which bore the name "Loftus Supplies and Sundries".

"I thought there were two schools," said Caroline.

"Oh there are," replied Doc Baker. "One of them is a bit outside of town to make it easier on the folks living so far out. You know how those Minneosta blizzards can be."

Laura shivered as she recalled the time she and her sisters and the Edwards' children were lost in a blizzard on their way home from school. She was sure no one would ever find them.

"And that one is made of white clapboards, just like the old one." Doc Baker smiled.

"They did a nice job on the church," said Charles.

Standing between Lawson's and the schoolhouse and set slightly back, the little white church had been totally refurbished. New boards were put in to fill the gapping holes left behind by the setting off of explosives five years earlier. The bell had been polished until its brilliance threatened to block out the sun. The original doors had been fixed and restained and the entire oustide had gotten a fresh coat of paint.

"They had to add on to accomodate all the new townsfolk," said Doc Baker. "There's talk about putting a Methodist church out by where the other schoolhouse is. A large group of Methodists moved into the outskirts of town about two months ago. They've been meeting in one of the member's homes, but it seems only right to build them a place to worship properly."

"Seems like there will be lots of opportunity for work," said Charles, nodding to Almanzo.

"Sure are," replied Doc Baker, "especially for a man like you who is so handy with a hammer and saw."

While Doc Baker and Charles spoke, Laura described to Mary where all the buildings were located and how much things had changed. "I can't believe that this is Walnut Grove. It's going to take some getting used to."

***

"I still don't know why we had to rush around to leave today," an exasperated Percival said.

Nellie batted her eyes at him. "Oh darling, aren't you excited to see Walnut Grove again?" she asked sweetly.

"It's not like the town is going anywhere."

She clasped Percival's arm. "You wait and see, a change of scenery is all you need to get you feeling like your old self again." Nellie smiled at her children. "Besides, it will be fun to show Jennifer and Benjamin where they were born."

"I'm surprised you're so anxious to go. It won't look anything like it did before. The restaurant is gone. There's a saloon next to the hotel. And there are three general stores. And there's a train station in the middle of town."

Nellie brought her right arm around Percival's shoulders and pulled him close. "Oh darling, a town is the people, not the buildings. And I can't wait to see everyone again."

to be continued...


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Fri Apr 04, 2008 10:27 pm

It seemed like they had traveled forever on that dreadful train. Jennifer and Benjamin had worn Nellie's last nerve to a frazzle and Percival's mood had gone from bad to worse with each mile. Nellie brushed Jennifer's hair away from her face as the child's sleepy head laid across her lap. Benjamin was tucked into the crook of Percival's arm. He snored lightly. It won't be long before he is taller than his father. Nellie hoped and prayed they didn't have any further delays on their trip. She wanted to sleep in Walnut Grove tomorrow.

*

"Oh where are they?" sighed an exhasperated Harriet.

The tinkling of piano keys and sounds of several conversations taking place all at once traveled through the open window of the Oleson's hotel room.

"Now, dear, you know what it's like to travel by train. They break down all the time. And don't forget, Nellie and Percival are coming all the way from New York."

"I know that Nels!" She immediately regretted her anger. "I just want to see my babies again."

A smile curled the corners of Nels's lips. "Aw, Harriet." Nels pulled his wife into an embrace. "They'll be here soon."

*

"I'm glad we decided to stay in the boarding house," Almanzo stomped across the room. "We would never get any sleep in the hotel with all that noise coming out of the saloon."

Laura rolled her eyes. "I know, I can hardly concentrate on reading. How much longer before the house is ready?"

"Well, it's hard workin on our house and your Pa's at the same time. Both frames are up now, and we'll put the walls up on our house startin tomorrow. So, maybe another week or two before we'll be close to movin in."

"Pa isn't overdoing it is?"

"Laura, your Pa has worked hard all his life."

"But he's not getting any younger. He should be slowing down some now."

Almanzo chuckled and plunked down on the bed next to his wife. "Charles isn't goin to be slowin down any time soon. He's got a family to support. Besides, it's work that keeps a man young." He smirked. "That and chasin after a beautiful wife."

"Almanzo Wilder, really!" Laura laughed and leaned into Almanzo's open arms.


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Fri May 09, 2008 10:07 am

James sat at the kitchen table next to his new wife, Sarah. They had lived with her parents since the wedding and James was anxious to get a place of their own. His mind wandered back to the day his family left and journeyed to Walnut Grove without him. It had been hard to watch them go. He knew it was hard for them too. Ma and Pa never showed it, but inside their hearts were breaking.

"Why are you so set on moving to Walnut Grove?" a frustrated and angry Sarah asked her new husband.

"Because it's my home."

"You haven't lived there for years. Besides, this is my home. I've lived in Burr Oak all my life. Why should I be the one to leave my family?" Sarah stood up and stomped over to the kitchen sink and began pumping water into the basin to wash the supper dishes.

James raced across the room to stand beside her. "I told them I was joining them."

"Well, you should have discussed it with me first."

"You're my wife. You should go where I say."

Sarah shook the water from her hands and dryed them on her apron. "James Cooper, I am not some possession, like your watch, that you can just take wherever you like. I have feelings, and I wish you would have considered them before telling your family we would move to Minnesota."

A huge sigh escaped James's lips as he brought his fingers up to rub his tired eyes. Why is she being so stubborn?

"My Pa has always decided where we would live. Ma never questioned him on it," he said.

"Maybe she should have."

"Maybe you should be a more traditional woman."

"I thought you liked that I had my own mind."

James raked his fingers through his hair. His freckles had faded slightly over the years, but in the heat of anger the redness of his face brought them out again. He breathed deeply, trying to calm the situation down.

Placing his hands on Sarah's shoulders, he looked at her with pleading eyes. "I do like that you have your own mind, but I need to be with my family. I lost my real Ma and Pa when I was just a kid. The Ingalls family took Cassandra and me in and gave us a good home. I'm not ashamed for being thankful for that and wanting to help them out now."

Sarah's eyes scrunched up in confusion. "What are you talking about?"

James wandered back over to the table and slumped down into a chair. "It's Pa. He's getting older. It's not as easy for him to do the things he used to do. Right now he and Almanzo are building houses. I should be there. I should be the one raising those houses, not Pa. He'll never admit it, but the physical work of a farm life isn't going to be easy for him."

"But I thought he would be doing some carpentry and other odd jobs."

"He will, but the family still needs food to survive and that means clearing a field, planting, harvesting. And raising houses is no easy task. If his carpentry work is only furniture he should be fine, but what if he's helping to build the town."

Sarah's anger had fled her body as soon as James had mentioned his father. She too was fond of Charles. His sparkling eyes, his happy face, his kindhearted ways, what wasn't to love. She had no idea that James felt so strongly about being there for his father. She never considered that Charles couldn't do anything he planned to do.

"All right, we'll go," she said.

"You mean it," he said with a huge smile.

"Yes, but on one condition."

James could barely contain his excitement. "What is it? I'll do anything."

"If you're not making a decent living in a year, we'll come back to Burr Oak."

James wasn't afraid. He knew he would make it in Walnut Grove with the way it was growing. And he knew Sarah would grow just as fond of the place as he was.

"I promise, we'll come back to Burr Oak if we can't make it in Walnut Grove."

"Good." Sarah leaned over and placed a kiss on his cheek. "Now, we best break the news to Momma and Poppa. They won't be happy, but I'm sure they'll understand."

To be continued...


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Thu Aug 28, 2008 9:43 am

Laura, Mary, and Caroline walked across the street once breakfast was over, Grace close to Caroline's side. Michelle wasn't feeling well so she decided to stay at the boarding house with the children. The women smiled as they chattered about the many changes they would have to get used to.

"At least the saloon is quiet for a few more hours," sighed Caroline. "In all my days I never thought Walnut Grove would have a saloon."

Laura and Mary nodded agreement. This new Walnut Grove would take a lot of getting used to. But it was nice to see the town thriving with new businesses and a library. "Pa certainly isn't happy about the saloon," said Laura. "Is he worried about Mr. Edwards?"

"That's part of it, I'm sure," replied Caroline. "Mr. Edwards has done a wonderful job of staying away from it and it would break your Pa's heart if he started drinking again. But I think the whole idea of a saloon in Walnut Grove is what bothers him the most. No good comes out of men drinking and gambling."

"I was surprised Rose wanted to go out to the homestead with Pa and Almanzo this morning," said Mary. A white cane extended out before her, Mary counted in her head the number of steps she walked from the boarding house.

Laura laughed. "She's her father's daughter." Laura stopped as they reached the platform in front of the library. "There's nothing she enjoys more than following her Papa around. She'll find a big shady tree to sit under and read while she watches him work."

Caroline clasped Laura's face in her hands. A proud smile curled the corners of her lips. "I know one other little girl who worshipped her father." Laura blushed. "Oh Ma!"

"Come on," blurted out Grace. "I want to see all the books they have."

The women chuckled as Grace pushed through the front door into the library and a bell tinkled their arrival. A woman with a perfectly shaped tight yellow bun leaned over the desk organizing books. She wore a crisp white linen blouse trimmed with lace. The scent of lemons tickled Laura's nose. When the woman glanced up to greet them, Laura and Caroline gasped.

"Mrs. Simms? Is that really you?" asked Laura.

"Eva, how wonderful to see you," exclaimed Caroline.

Mrs. Simms's delightful laugh floated through the room. She embraced Laura, Caroline, and Mary. "I was hoping you would wander this way this morning. I wanted to surprise you." She glanced down at the the little blonde girl standing close to Caroline. "That can't be Grace!"

"Yes it is," said Caroline, beaming with pride. "Adam Jr. must have gotten big too."

"Oh yes," said Mrs. Simms. "I'm not sure who eats more at our house, his father or him." They all laughed.

"When did you move here?" asked Mary.

"About a month ago. Come, let's all sit down for a moment and chat. No one else is here right now." Mrs. Simms clasped Mary's hand in hers and led her to a table and chairs set up in a corner of the room. "When Adam read the announcement in the paper about the town being rebuilt we had to come. We were heartbroken when we heard about what the railroad had done. Knowing that all the people and places we loved had been blown up to send a message to the railroad company brought on a wave of mixed emotions. I was glad that the townsfolk didn't let themselves be pushed around by these men, but at the same time it was so sad to think of everything being gone."

Lumps formed in everyone's throats and a horrible silence fell amongst the small gathering.

Tears glistened in Caroline's eyes. "We were here for a visit when it happened. It was the hardest thing I've ever watched. We all felt so powerless."

"I'm glad I wasn't here," said Mary.

"Me too," said Mrs. Simms. "Adam's business was doing well and I can't say that we had any real reason to come back here other than curiosity, but once we were here again, even though it's a very different town, we knew we wanted Adam Jr. to grow up here. So, we sold the farm and claimed a homestead out here. Adam stayed here by himself for a while and built the place with the help of some neighbors, then Adam Jr. and I came afterwards."

Every time Mrs. Simms mentioned Adam Jr., Mary's face grew more somber. Caroline eyed her daughter with concern. She never thought what memories might be stirred up for Mary being back here again. Yes, the blind school was gone, but the memories of the fire that took the lives of Adam Charles Holbrook Kendall and Alice Garvey lived on. Instinctively Caroline reached across the table and clasped Mary's hand. Mary swallowed back the tears threatening to spill over onto her cheeks.

"Are you all right Mary?" asked Mrs. Simms.

Mary blinked away the tears and nodded. "Adam and I had a son when we lived here. He died in a fire. Hearing the name Adam just..." She could no longer continue as her emotions overtook her.

"Oh Mary!" Mrs. Simms stood up from the table and embraced her. "There, there, I'm sorry...I didn't know." Mrs. Simms glanced up at Caroline, her eyes filled with anxiety.

Mary fumbled through her bag for a handkerchief and dabbed her eyes. "I'm all right. Thank you," she said in a raspy voice.

"I'm very sorry, Mary."

"It's okay, you couldn't possibly have known."

"No, but I do know the pain of losing a child. I was pregnant a few years ago. The baby was stillborn." Mrs. Simms's eyes now glistened with tears. "The whole family, even Luke and his wife, were devastated. Then the doctor told me I couldn't have anymore children and it was like my whole world came crashing down." Mrs. Simms stood up and wandered over to the window, looking out over the town she continued. "I was so angry and sad that I never wanted to get out of bed. The family was worried." When Mrs. Simms turned around a soft smile curled the corner of her lips. "But we made it through and we've been very happy these past few years, though we'll never ever forget her."

The women wiped tears from their eyes. Grace, oblivious to it all sat reading.

"Now, enough of this sad talk. You're back and it's time to start over. And we're all together again. How about I introduce you to a few of the business owners in town. And don't let that Loftus get the better of you. He and his wife are just about as proud as Mrs. Oleson."

Everyone laughed as they headed towards the door.


To be continued...


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Sat Aug 30, 2008 12:12 am

This is a great story so far. I just found this tonight and really enjoyed it. Thanks for your efforts to keep the story going Cheryl. You are definitely an excellent writer. Most of the other contributors to this story have also done a good job.
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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Sat Aug 30, 2008 2:40 pm

I'm glad you're enjoying it Toby and thanks for the compliment. I've needed the stress relief lately, so I've been trying to keep up with the writing. I love how all of us have worked together to create something so nice.


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Sun Aug 31, 2008 12:23 am

Cheryl, I especially enjoy how you incorporate current people, past people, stories and etc., into the mix. Hearing how their lives continued beyond them leaving after the blowing up of the town just thrills me to death! Love



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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Tue Sep 02, 2008 12:27 am

Thanks Misti. I'm glad you're enjoying it. I just hope I can keep it all straight. LOL!


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Tue Sep 02, 2008 10:01 am

Just as long as you don't turn it into season 9! SmileyCentral.com grinsmiley



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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Tue Sep 02, 2008 10:18 am

Never happen. Remember, I like LHOP. Laughing


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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Wed Sep 03, 2008 8:44 pm

bethandmanly wrote:
Thanks Misti. I'm glad you're enjoying it. I just hope I can keep it all straight. LOL!

I noticed a minor thing. Isaiah acted like he was hearing about the rebuilt Walnut Grove for the first time when Charles told him. Then a little while later, Isaiah said that Carl wrote him a few weeks back and was hoping to convince his Ma to move back to Walnut Grove.
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PostSubject: Re: LHOTP - The Reunion Story (You decide what happens)   Today at 8:42 am

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