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About the author:
I've always been an avid reader and love a wide variety of genre depending on my mood for the day. My favorites include romance, spanking romance, erotic romance, post-apocalyptic fiction and historical fiction.
One of my favorite things to do is spending time with my family as I think of new stories to write. Hope you enjoy the books.
Here is a short sample from the book:
Chapter 1. Regrets
Victoria Johnson finished collecting the eggs in the chicken coop and headed back towards the cabin to start supper. As she came around the side of her home, she once again saw her granddaughter, Lily, sitting and staring at the road her siblings traveled down not three weeks before.
“Sitting there isn’t going to make them come back,” she said to Lily as she approached. “Unless you’re expecting a visit from Jeremiah.”
“I’m not. Do you think they’ve made it to Independence yet?” Lily sighed and asked.
“Kenny said it would take at least a month,” Victoria reminded her. “It’s only been a few weeks, so I doubt they’ve made it yet.”
“And then Henry said it could take up to six months to get to the Willamette Valley. Do you think they’ll be alright, Grandma?” Lily asked, as she again stared down the road in the direction her brothers and sister left, on their way to Independence, Missouri. Once they arrived there, her oldest brother Kenny already had them signed onto a wagon train, and they’d be traveling even further west, all the way to Oregon.
They’d all tried to talk Lily into going with them after the death of their parents and her brother Kenny’s fiancee’, Sadie Mills. But Lily made the decision to stay and marry Jeremiah Smith. A decision she was beginning to question every day, just not out loud to anyone.
“I pray for them every day,” Victoria said. “That’s all any of us can do.”
“So do I,” Lily said and sighed again. “I worry the most about Michelle and Eddie.”
“Kenny and Henry will take care of them,” Victoria assured her, and Lily nodded. “Do you wish you would have gone with them now?”
“I don’t know,” Lily shrugged and answered. “I’d already accepted Jeremiah’s proposal, and he didn’t want to go.”
“I know what Jeremiah wanted,” Victoria said, “but I’m asking if you wanted to go?”
Lily shrugged again and thought about how to answer, “I’m going to miss them; who knows if we’ll ever see each other again. If Jeremiah would’ve wanted to go, I would’ve gone. But I do love it here in Paducah, so deciding to stay wasn’t that hard. Plus, you and Grandpa are here.”
“Your Grandpa and I are getting old,” Victoria told her, “I hope your decision to stay didn’t have anything to do with us.”
“I would have missed you both if I’d have left,” Lily told her. “I made the decision to stay because of everything; you, Grandpa, Jeremiah, my aunts and uncles, and all my cousins.” She also made it because of Nick, but she didn’t add that in.
“I still don’t believe you’re telling me the truth,” Victoria said, “so I’ll tell you how I feel. I regret not talking your Grandpa into going. I think Kenny and Nick are right, war is coming, and Oregon will probably the best place to be if it does.”
“You would have gone?” Lily asked, surprised. “What about my aunts and uncles, and your other grandchildren?”
“Have you heard them talk lately?” Victoria asked, shaking her head. “Your Aunt Maisie married a slave owner, and their boys are all for slavery. Jimmy and Mark are old enough to fight, and they’ll probably all join the army for the south. Your Uncle Matt hates slavery, and your cousin Seth is old enough to fight, they’ll both probably fight for the north. I don’t want to be here to see my children and grandsons fight each other. Honestly, I do wish we would have gone. In another year or two, your Grandpa and I might be too old to make the trip.”
“Where is Grandpa?” Lily asked. “Shouldn’t he be home by now?”
“He went to your Uncle Matt’s, to help repair his barn. Your Uncle Joe and Jimmy were coming to help. Hopefully, there won’t be any trouble between them today.”
“Seems like there’s trouble every day. That’s all everyone in town wants to talk about anymore,” Lily complained, “states rights and slavery. People are arguing all the time.”
“And that’s why people are starting to leave and go west. I wish you would have come out of the house to say goodbye to Nick yesterday,” Victoria said.
“There was no need,” Lily said but looked away quickly.
“Maybe you’d feel better if you told me what happened between you two,” Victoria said to her. “I might be able to help.”
“It doesn’t matter Grandma,” Lily said and smiled sadly up at her. “Nick and I had our chance; it didn’t work out.”
“I’m here if you ever change your mind,” Victoria told her.
“I know,” Lily said, as she reached out and squeezed her grandma’s hand. She’d never told anyone about what happened behind the church at the Harvest Festival, and never would. “Here comes Grandpa now.”
“I wasn’t expecting him for a few hours yet,” Victoria told her.
They both stayed on the porch silently, waiting for John to pull the wagon into the homestead’s yard. Victoria could tell by the look on his face as he got closer, that he was upset about something. He pulled the team in front of the porch, set the brake and jumped down.
“What’s wrong?” Victoria asked.
“I’m so tired of the arguing,” John said, shaking his head and flopping down in the chair next to Lily’s.
“Do I even need to ask who it was this time?” Victoria asked.
“Like always, Matt and Joe started it,” John said, “but then Seth and Jimmy joined in. Next thing anyone knew, Jimmy punched Seth square in the jaw.”
“What did you do?” Victoria asked, disgusted with all of them.
“I stepped between them and broke it up. I made them finish fixing Matt’s barn wall, and then I left. I don’t want to talk to any of our children or grandchildren right now. I made sure they all knew it when I was leaving too,” John said, frustrated. Then he looked over at Lily and said, “that doesn’t include you.”
“I’ve had enough of it myself. Seems like any time our families together lately, they don’t do anything but fight,” Victoria told him.
“Truthfully Victoria, I’m beginning to regret not going to Oregon with Kenny and the rest of the kids,” John told her.
“I was just telling Lily that I feel the same way most days,” Victoria admitted.
“You don’t mean that, Grandpa,” Lily said. “You’re just upset right now.”
“I do mean it,” John told her. “I’m tired of going into town and hearing people I’ve known for years do nothing but fight with each other.”
“Once the election is over, don’t you think it’ll all end?” Lily asked.
“That’s over a year away yet, and no, not if that Lincoln fella wins,” John said, “and between you and me, I think I’m gonna vote for him.”
“Even if it means war?” Victoria asked.
John nodded and answered, “you know how I feel about slavery. So even if it means war, and tearing the country in two.” Victoria just nodded her head at him; she did know how he felt, they’d discussed it in private more than once.
“Well I’m staying here,” Lily said, “Jeremiah will never agree to go to Oregon.”
“Where is your young man?” John asked, “I haven’t seen him around much the last few weeks.”
“He’s been busy in town,” Lily said, trying to hide her scowl. “Now that Kenny sold the farm, he won’t be needed to work there, so he took a job at the lumber mill.”
“Well if you’d like,” Victoria said, “the wagon is hitched up and ready. You can take it into town if you want.”
“I think I’d like to do that,” Lily quickly told them.
“Do you think that’s safe, Victoria?” John asked.
“I’ve been going into town by myself since before we were married,” Victoria answered, “and that’s longer than it’s been called Paducah. Just be home for supper, Lily, I’m making your favorite tonight, fried chicken.”
“You be careful,” John said to Lily. “If there’s any sign of trouble, you get back home as quick as you can.”
“I will, Grandpa,” Lily said as she went into the house and grabbed her shawl. Her Grandpa followed her to the wagon and helped her up on the bench. “I’ll be home soon, I’d never miss Grandma’s fried chicken, but I would like a chance to talk to Jeremiah. I’d like to invite him to supper Sunday after church.”
“I haven’t seen him at church either,” John commented, “but you go ahead and invite him.”
“He said the last few Sundays he overslept, but I’ll let him know he’s welcome,” Lily said before she flicked the reins and the horses moved forward. She made a turn in the yard, and headed back down the road her Grandpa just traveled on, heading into town.
She really wasn’t feeling the need to see Jeremiah, but she did need some time alone to think. She’d only seen Jeremiah three times since her brother Kenny sold the family farm, and then took the rest of her siblings west, and she wondered why she wasn’t missing him more.
Lily’s thoughts kept going back to Nick Garrett; her brother Kenny’s best friend, and up until the Fall Harvest Dance at the church, her beau. Nick had escorted her to the dance and the evening started off well. They’d danced together a few times before she’d gone off to dance with her brother, Henry. It was when that dance was over that their relationship changed.
When she found Nick again, he was kissing Beth Hanson. She’d stormed out of the church with Nick right behind her. He’d tried to explain, by saying he thought Beth had been her. Like that made it any better. How could he mistake her for Beth? She was at least four inches taller than the trollop; Beth had blond hair, while Lily’s was brown. But Beth also had much bigger breasts and wore gowns that showed them off, something Lily would never do.
Lily had never been so angry with anyone in her short life, as she’d been with Nick at that moment. She’d known since she was a little girl that Nick Garrett was the man she was going to marry, and finding him kissing Beth had been more than she could process at the time. Maybe if he would’ve just let her walk away, she would have calmed down enough to listen to him, with time. But he didn’t. Nick grabbed her by the arm and turned her towards him, trying to tell her his side of the story.
Lily was too angry to listen. She’d called him a ‘two-timing bastard’ and added ‘she hoped he burned in hell’. He’d told her to stop using that language because no wife of his was going to talk like that.
Lily turned to him and said, “no need to worry about that, I’d never marry a two-timing bastard.”
It was then that Lily saw a side of Nick she wasn’t sure she could live with. Unluckily for Lily, they were behind the church, where no one could see them. Nick put his foot up on a tree stump and flipped Lily right over his knee. It only took seconds for him to flip her skirt up so he could see her drawers. Lily couldn’t believe it when she felt him pull the split open; baring her to him.
“I said, no wife if mine will ever use that kind of language,” Nick said as he began bringing his hand down firmly on her bottom. Smack, smack, smack, smack, smack, smack.
“Let me up right now,” Lily said, struggling to push herself up. She was mortified, not so much by the spanking, but by the fact that Nick bared her to do it.
“Not until you agree to listen to me,” Nick said, spanking her more. Smack, smack, smack, smack, smack, smack.
“I don’t care what you have to say,” Lily said, “you were kissing her, I saw you.”
“She kissed me,” Nick tried to explain, “I pushed her away as soon as I realized it wasn’t you.” Smack, smack, smack, smack, smack, smack.
“It didn’t look like you were pushing her away to me,” Lily said and hit Nick in the leg. “Let me up, before someone sees us.”
“Not until you listen,” Nick said again. Smack, smack, smack, smack, smack, smack.
It was then that they heard voices coming towards them and Nick quickly flipped her back up on her feet. Lily quickly fixed her drawers and skirt, refusing to look at Nick. “I don’t ever want to speak to you again,” Lily said, before turning and running back into the church. Luckily her Mama and Papa were getting ready to leave, and she was able to ride home with them.
Nick came and tried to talk to her twice the next day, but Lily refused to speak to him. Her family thought it was something she’d get over at first, and didn’t worry about it. Lily told them about Nick and Beth, but nothing more. She still couldn’t believe he’d bared her.
Jeremiah came around just two days later, asking Lily if she’d like to go for a walk. At first, Lily did it to make Nick jealous. But as the days went by, she became more and more angry about finding Nick kissing Beth, and embarrassed about the way he’d bared her, and then spanked her.
Jeremiah had been trying to court her for over a year, and this time Lily let him. Within two months he’d asked her to marry him, and she’d accepted. She knew she didn’t love Jeremiah the way she had Nick, but he was kind to her, and she would do whatever it took to make it a good marriage.
She’d watched from the window of the house yesterday as Nick came by the cabin to say goodbye to her grandparents. She knew she should go out a wish him a safe journey, but decided she’d never be able to do it without crying, so she’d stayed inside until he left. At one point he’d looked up towards the house, and for just a split second, their eyes locked before Lily turned away so Nick wouldn’t see her tears. Watching him go had been just as hard as watching her brothers and sister ride away, maybe even harder, as her heart felt like it broke for a second time.
Lily reached the outskirts of town just as she decided she was going to put Nick Garrett out of her mind, and her heart. Jeremiah was her future, and she’d work hard to be a good wife to him, and maybe over time, she’d learn to love him like she wanted too.
“Miss Lily,” she was greeted by Sheriff Barnes as she pulled the wagon up in front of the general store and began to climb down, “you really shouldn’t be in town alone today.”
“Why not, Sheriff?” Lily asked. She’d been coming to town alone since she was fourteen years old.
“We’ve got some miners in from the hills,” the sheriff answered.
“Miners have been in town before,” Lily said, “they don’t usually cause any ruckus.”
“With everyone taking sides on this slavery issue, things have been a bit more unruly,” the sheriff explained. “Can I escort you somewhere?”
“I was going to try to find Jeremiah,” Lily said, “but I thought I’d stop in at the post office first and see if there might be a telegram or letter from Kenny.”
“I’d be happy to wait right here for you while you do your errand, and then walk you anywhere you’d like in town,” Sheriff Barnes said.
“I’m assuming Jeremiah will be at the mill,” Lily told him, smiling up at him, “I can leave the wagon here and walk over, but I’d appreciate your company.”
“I’d be happy to make sure you get there,” the sheriff answered. “It’s not every day I get to escort a pretty young woman through town.” Lily just grinned at him before turning and heading up the two steps to the post office door.
Lily was in and out quickly, a bit disappointed that there was no letter from any of her siblings. So far this hadn’t been a very good day, but she hoped it would get better once she saw Jeremiah.