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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.
Follow me on twitter at @Bethanyhauck11
or send me an e-mail at [email protected] and I'll gladly answer any questions you may have, an e-mail you about new releases in 'The McCabe' series.
For updates on new releases, you can look at my blog on my Goodreads page at https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17003489.Bethany_Hauck
I now have a facebook page. If you'd like updates on the McCabe books or have questions you can follow me at https://www.facebook.com/bethanyhauck11/
What inspired you to write your book?
I love historical fiction and I love a good spanking story, but I've found that many times the spanking overshadows the story being told. I like the story to still be good with some good steamy chapters and some loving discipline. That's how I write my stories.
Here is a short sample from the book:
Chapter 1. Going West
Kenny Johnson looked around the large table where his family sat eating their Sunday supper. Sharing the meal were his parents, his Grandma and Grandpa Johnson, his two younger sisters, Lily and Michelle, and two younger brothers, Henry and Eddie. Also joining them were his sister Lily’s fiance, Jeremiah Smith, and his fiance, Sadie Mills. He knew what he was going to say wasn’t going to make his mother happy, but it was time to tell them all his and Sadie’s plan.
He glanced over at Sadie who gave him a small nod and smile. “Sadie and I have something to tell you,” Kenny said to his family, getting everyone's attention.
“What is it, son?” George Johnson, Kenny’s dad, asked. “Are you changing the date of the wedding?”
“No,” Kenny answered, “the wedding date won’t change. We’ve only got one more month to go; I can wait.”
“Well spit it out, boy,” John Johnson, Kenny’s grandpa said.
“We’ve decided that after the wedding, we’re going to join a wagon train and head out west to Oregon,” Kenny said as his family sat looking at him, not knowing how to respond.
“Why?” Rose Johnson, his mama, finally asked.
“Because war between the states is coming, Mama,” Kenny told her. “I’ve listened to what the people in town are saying, and I don’t want to be here in Kentucky when it starts, and have to pick a side to fight on.”
“I can understand that,” his father told him, “I’m not liking some of the talk I hear in town, people are already beginning to argue. What do you plan on doing out there?”
“There’s some good land in Oregon,” Kenny told them. “Me and Sadie heard about this place called the Willamette Valley. I’ve got my eye on a piece of land there; we’re going to raise cattle.”
“Can I go?” Kenny’s twenty-year-old brother, Henry, asked suddenly, making Rose gasp. “I don’t want to leave Paducah, but I agree, war is coming.”
“You can,” Kenny said, nodding at him. “If you’ve got enough money, it might be a good idea for you to have your own wagon and supplies.”
“I understand why you want to go,” Rose told her two sons, trying not to show her sadness, “I don’t want to see either of you go off to war, but I’ll worry about the three of you so far away all alone.”
“We won’t be alone, Mama,” Kenny assured her. “Nick’s going too; he’s just leaving a month or so after us.”
“Nick Garrett?” his eighteen-year-old sister Lily asked, a scowl on her face. “Why isn’t he just going with you?”
“He has a buyer for his farm, but they can’t pay him until the end of March,” Kenny explained. “We’ll be leaving the first week of March for Missouri.”
“Can’t you wait for him?” Rose asked. “Wouldn’t it be better for all of you to travel together?”
“We’ve already been accepted into our wagon train,” Kenny explained. “I’ve already got a wagon, oxen and supplies ordered, and it’ll be waiting for us in Independence. Our wagon train leaves there in the middle of April. It’ll be too difficult to change everything now.”
“You sure you want to go, Henry?” George asked his second oldest. “I hear it’s a difficult journey.”
“I know I don’t want to fight in a war that I’m not sure I believe in,” Henry told his parents. “I’d rather take my chances on the trail. I’m sure I’ll be fine with Kenny and Sadie.”
“Nick’s looking to buy the land right next to mine. We’re going to try ranching together to start.”
“What about me?” Henry asked.
“I remember there being quite a few pieces of property that connected to the one I want that were still available,” Kenny answered. “We can go down to the land office and look tomorrow if you want, or you can live with Sadie and me until you’re ready for a house of your own.”
“I’ll have to see how much money I’ve got put away in the bank,” Henry told him. “I’m not sure if I’ve got enough saved for the wagon, supplies and land.”
“If you’re sure you want to go,” George interrupted, “then I’ll make sure you’ve got the funds to buy what you need.”
“Thank you, Papa,” Henry said.
“You’re awful quiet, Sadie,” Victoria Johnson, Kenny’s grandma, said. “How do you feel about all this, dear?”
“Leaving home and my family is scary,” Sadie answered, “but the idea of Kenny going to war and possibly not coming back, is even scarier.”
“Oregon is a state now,” John said.
“I know, Grandpa,” Kenny replied, “and a free state. That’s part of why we want to go there.”
“Well I think you’re all crazy,” Jeremiah said, “Lily and I’ll be staying right here in Kentucky after our wedding. With you both gone, your Papa and Grandpa will need some help on the farm.”
“I’m glad to hear that,” George said nodding. “I’d hate for my daughter to be traveling that far from home. You’re right Jeremiah; we’ll need some help around here until Eddie’s old enough to take over.”
“I want to go to Oregon too,” thirteen-year-old Eddie, the youngest of the Johnson children, said.
“Not for a few years yet, young man,” Rose told him, making him frown. “How did your parents take the news, Sadie?”
“Mama was upset at first,” Sadie answered, “but she understands why we need to go. Her and Papa traveled to Kentucky in a wagon from Virginia over twenty years ago.”
“She’s told me that story,” Rose said.
“Mama said if she was younger, she’d make Papa pack up the farm and come with us,” Sadie told them. “They don’t know what they’re going to do if the war comes to Paducah.”
“I’m a bit worried about that myself,” George admitted. “But I’m too old to be packing up and leaving.”
“Nothing’s going to happen,” Jeremiah said, “everyone is panicking for nothing.”
“I wish I felt as sure of that as you,” George said and most of the other Johnson’s nodded their agreement.
“How are you gonna to get to Independence if you’re not buying your wagon till you get there?” Eddie asked.
“We’ll take the small wagon and team I own now,” Kenny explained. “I’ve agreed to trade them in toward the price of the wagon and oxen.”
“Oxen?” Eddie asked.
“That’s what they recommend using to get all the way to Oregon,” Kenny told him. “The trails to hard for horses.”
“You’re leaving the first week of March?” George asked. “Where are you going to sleep? It’ll still be pretty cold at night.”
“It’s four-hundred miles to Independence, Papa,” Kenny told him. “We have to get there, pick up our wagon and supplies, get everything organized, and be ready to leave on April twentieth. I’m hoping to make ten miles a day. I should be able to; the roads are well traveled all the way there.”
“You should be able to make fifteen to twenty,” John said, “but it’s good to give yourself extra time.”
“I think so too, Grandpa,” Kenny said.
“Well, son,” George said, “I’ll be sad to see you all leave, but I’ll be waiting anxiously for your letters.”
“I’ll make sure they write, Papa Johnson,” Sadie assured him.
“Look,” Victoria said, pointing towards the window, “it’s beginning to snow. We should be getting back to our cabin before the road gets slick, John.”
“I agree,” John told his wife. “If no one needs anything else from us, we’ll be taking our leave.”
“Be careful,” George said to his parents who nodded as they put their coats on.
“We promised Sadie’s parents we’d bring her home after supper,” Rose reminded George.
“That we did,” George answered, “we’ll take her as soon as we finish helping you clean up, the roads shouldn’t be too slippery yet.”
“Can I go?” Eddie asked.
“Of course,” George answered. “We can all go if you’d like.”
“You go ahead and take Mama, Papa,” Lily told her father, “I’ll stay here, clean up and do the dishes.”
“I’d appreciate that, Lily,” Rose said, patting her daughter’s hand.
“I’ll stay and help,” Michelle, who was fifteen and had sat quietly listening to everyone else, added.
“Look what thoughtful daughters we’ve raised, George,” Rose said, smiling at her two girls.
“I think I should be getting home myself,” Jeremiah told them. “You know how slippery the roads become with just a little snow.”
“I’ll walk you out,” Lily said.
“No need for you to come out and get chilled,” Jeremiah told her, “I’m going to make a trip to the outhouse before I leave anyway.”
“Then safe travels,” Lily said to him as he squeezed her hand and smiled at her.
“Yes,” Victoria said as he walked towards the door, “safe travels.” She’d never really warmed up to the young man. She pulled open the door and said, “Come on, John, help this old woman get home.”
“Old?” John joked, “don’t be calling my bride old. She’s still the most beautiful woman I’ve ever laid eyes on.” Everyone laughed as he followed her out the door with Jeremiah right behind.
“Are you boys going to ride with us?” George asked Kenny and Henry as the rest of the family began stacking the dishes.
“I’ll be staying home. I’ve got some chores to finish around here,” Henry answered. “Did you milk the cows, Eddie?”
“I forgot,” Eddie said.
“You’ll have to stay home then,” George told him. “You know chores have to be done before anything else.”
“If Sadie doesn’t mind,” Kenny said, “I’ll stay here and help Eddie. He was helping me chop some wood before dinner, that’s why he didn’t get the milking done.”
“I don’t mind,” Sadie said to him. “It’ll be nice for your Mama and Papa to ride back just the two of them. A romantic winter wagon ride.”
“Oh stop,” Rose said and blushed while everyone else, except Eddie, began to laugh.
“Go ahead, Mama,” Henry teased, “enjoy your time with Papa. I bet he even tries to steal a kiss or two.”
“You’re right about that,” George said, leaning over and kissing his wife on the cheek.
“You old fool,” Rose said as she pushed him away, but she was laughing.
“Don’t you think Mama and Papa should’ve been back by now?” Lily asked her two older brothers.
“Maybe they stopped to visit with someone,” Kenny said.
“They’re probably just enjoying spending time alone,” Henry added. “They don’t get to do that very often.”
“Do you think Grandma and Grandpa made it home?” Eddie asked as he came in from his chores out in the barn. “It’s getting awfully slippery out there.”
“They did,” Michelle answered. “Henry walked over and made sure. At least they didn’t have to go far.”
“That house we helped Papa build on the edge of the property is perfect for them,” Kenny said.
“It is,” Henry agreed, “Grandpa’s getting too old to be doing farm work every day. If he was here and saw us working, he’d insist on helping.”
“We’ll be building our own houses come the end of the year,” Kenny said to Henry. “I’m glad Papa showed us how.”
“I think I’d like a house of my own once there’s time,” Henry said. “A log cabin would be good to enough for me. I don’t want to be in your and Sadie’s way.”
“You won’t be,” Kenny assured him, “but we’ll get you a house built as soon as we can.”
“I like that Grandma and Grandpa still live close,” Michelle said, “I’m so used to seeing Grandma every day, I’d miss her if I didn’t.”
“Me too,” Lily added. “I’m going to miss my big brothers though.”
“You’ll be so busy planning your wedding in the fall, you won’t have time to miss us,” Kenny said to her.
“I can’t believe you’re not going to be here for my wedding,” Lily said sadly.
“I’m sorry, Lily,” Kenny told her, “but the ideal time to leave for Oregon is mid-April to mid-May. If you want to move your wedding up, then we’ll be there.”
“No,” Lily quickly said, “Jeremiah and I need more time before we wed. We’re both still getting used to the idea.”
“I can’t wait to marry Sadie,” Kenny told them, “I’ve known since I was ten-years-old that she was the girl I was going to marry.”
“And it took you fourteen years to work up the courage to ask her?” Lily teased, and Kenny nodded and grinned. Henry and Michelle burst out laughing.
“That sounds like the wagon now,” Henry said as they heard the familiar sound coming down the road.
“Papa seems to be driving fast,” Kenny commented, becoming concerned
“He does,” Lily agreed, she started heading for the door with Kenny right behind. “I hope nothing’s wrong.”
They exited the house and watched as a wagon traveled towards them, much to fast on the snow-slickened trail. They watched as not their parents, but Sadie’s pulled up in front of the cabin. Both looked very upset.
“Mr. and Mrs. Mills,” Kenny said, going to greet them and helping Sadie’s mama down. “Mama and Papa were supposed to bring Sadie home. They left quite a while ago.”
“Come in the house, Kenny,” Mr. Mills said. “We’ve got some news.” He took his wife by the arm and lead her towards the door where Eddie stood peeking out.
“What is it?” Kenny asked as soon as he shut the door behind them. “Is Sadie alright?”
“I don’t even know how to tell you this,” Mr. Mills started, his voice breaking. “There was an accident on the road just outside of town. Somehow some of the spokes snapped on your Papa’s wagon wheel, which caused the wheel to break and come off. The wagon tipped over into the ravine next to it. No one survived.”
“Mama and Papa?” Lily asked, falling into a seat.
“They’re gone,” Mr. Mills said.
“Sadie?” Kenny asked, stunned.
“Our daughter is also gone,” Mr. Mills said as he too plopped down on one of the chairs around the large table and began to cry.
“…and we commit their bodies to the ground: earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust. The Lord bless them and keep them, the Lord make His Face to shine upon them and be gracious to them, the Lord lift up His countenance upon them and give them peace. Amen.” The minister from the church looked up at the five Johnson children and Mr. and Mrs. Mills as he concluded the funeral. “Would any of you like to say something?” he asked them.
“No,” they all answered together. What more was there to say?
Their lives the last two days had been filled with making arrangements and consoling each other. Kenny knew now that the funeral was over, it was time to make some decisions. He was the oldest, and it was up to him to look out for his younger brothers and sisters. He planned on talking to all of them once they got back to the house and read the will his parents had left in case anything ever happened to them.
Kenny was numb as he stood and shook the hands of the friends and family who showed up for the combined funeral. He was glad that the Mills’ agreed to it; he didn’t think he could have done this twice. He looked around at his siblings and grandparents to see how they were holding up.
Grandma and Grandpa were sad, but being strong. Thankfully, most of his aunts, uncles and cousins showed up the night before, which eased his Grandma’s heart just a little.
Lily was leaning on Jeremiah for support. He’d shown up early yesterday morning and hadn’t left Lily’s side except to go home and sleep. Kenny had never really liked Jeremiah; he’d always hoped Lily and Nick would end up together. He had to give Jeremiah credit though for supporting Lily.
Henry and Michelle were very quiet. They both seemed to just want to get the day over with. Kenny hoped his brother still planned to go with him out west. In fact, he had plans for all of them.
Eddie was in the worst shape. He’d barely stopped crying since they’d gotten word about the accident. Kenny hoped the adventure he was going to offer him would help him go on. He was hoping the same for himself.
Once the last of the guests left the cemetery they headed back to the house they’d all grown up in. Grandma and Grandpa Johnson, the aunts and uncles, and all the cousins sat around and told stories about Sadie Mills, and George and Rose Johnson, until it was almost dark. Soon after that, everyone took their leave. Finally, it was just the five Johnson’s, their grandparents, and Jeremiah left. Kenny took a deep breath, before pulling out the will.
“Before I open this,” Kenny said, “I’d like to make a proposal to all of you.”
“What is it?” Michelle asked.
“No matter what this says, let’s go west, to Oregon,” he said, “all of us.”
“You don’t mean your Grandma and me too, do ya, boy?” his grandpa asked.
“All of us,” Kenny said. “You could do it, Grandpa, and we’d all do as much as we could to make the trip easier on Grandma.”
“I’m not worried about your grandma, boy,” John told his grandson, “she’s as strong as the day I married her, but we can’t go.”
“We’ve still got other children and grandchildren here, Kenny,” his grandma said. “If I was just a bit younger though, I’d jump at the chance to go.”
“You would, wouldn’t you?” his grandpa said to her, and although he was exhausted after burying his son and daughter-in-law, he still looked at her the same way he did when he’d married her more than forty years earlier.
“Adventure is good,” Victoria told him. “It keeps you young. I’m a bit worried myself about what’s going to happen if war breaks out. Some of our family will be on one side, and some on the other.”
“Read the will, Kenny,” Lily said sadly. She already knew she was going to turn down the trip out west, Jeremiah had told her more than once how foolish her brothers were being.
“They left the farm and money at the bank to me,” Kenny said after reading for a few minutes. “I’m to either keep it, or sell it, but the two acres Grandma and Grandpa’s cabin is on will remain in Grandpa’s name.”
“What about the rest of us?” Michelle asked.
“If I keep the farm, you’re to be able to live on it for as long as you like,” Kenny said, “but if I sell, Lily and Michelle each get one-hundred dollars, Henry and Eddie each get one-thousand dollars.”
“That doesn’t seem fair,” Jeremiah said, “shouldn’t the farm be split five ways if you’re leaving anyway?”
“It’s how our families always done it,” Grandpa said. “I passed the land down to my oldest son, who is passing it down to his oldest son. The boys get a bigger portion because they’ll need to buy land of their own. The girls will have a small amount of money to take with them into their marriage.”
“I was planning on moving here to help with the chores anyway after you left and Lily and I married,” Jeremiah said, “I’d be happy to keep the farm going for you after you leave.”
“I’m going to sell it,” Kenny said, making a decision. “I’d like Michelle and Eddie to come to Oregon with me and Henry. You too, Lily.”
“I can’t go,” Lily said, looking over at Jeremiah who was already shaking his head no, an angry look on his face. “Jeremiah doesn’t want to.”
“You don’t need to sound so disappointed, Lily. If you want to go with your brothers and get yourselves killed, don’t let me stop you,” Jeremiah said. He stomped across the room over to the door and left.
“I don’t know what you see in him,” Henry said.
“He’s actually really sweet at times,” Lily said, defending him.
“Come on, Lily,” Eddie said, “come with us.”
“You want to go?” Lily asked.
“Yes,” Eddie said, “I don’t want to live in this house anymore. It makes me miss Mama and Papa.”
“We all miss them,” Michelle said, putting her arm around him, “but I agree with you. I don’t want to stay in this house; I’ll go.”
They all turned and looked at Lily, “I can’t,” she said again, struggling with her decision to stay.
“Come on, Lily,” Kenny said it this time. “I’ll take the money from the farm and buy more land. That way when you and Michelle marry, you can stay near us.”
“I’m going to stay and marry Jeremiah,” Lily said quietly.
“Lily can stay with us until her wedding,” Rose told her other grandchildren. “She’ll be fine with us; you do what you need to.”
“You’re sure, Lily?” Kenny asked one more time.
“I’m sure,” Lily answered, even though she wasn’t.
“I’d always hoped you and Lily would end up marrying,” Kenny said to Nick as they left the land office a week later.
“I think we were heading that way until I screwed it up,” Nick said.
“What do you mean?” Henry asked.
“You never did tell me what you did,” Kenny said to his best friend. “One day the two of you were courting, and the next she would barely even talk to you.”
“I’ve never told anyone what happened,” Nick said, “just know that it was my fault. I screwed everything up.”
“You’re still not going to tell me?” Kenny asked. “I wish I felt better about Jeremiah. I keep telling myself I dislike him so much because he isn’t you.”
“Every time I see him with her, I just want to punch him,” Nick admitted. “He sure moved in quick once the two of us split.”
“That he did,” Kenny said. “I thought for sure you’d get back together. You really won’t tell me what happened?”
Nick thought about it for a minute before speaking. “Remember at the end of summer when we all went to the Harvest Festival at the church?” Nick asked.
“Of course,” Kenny said, “that’s the last night the two of you were together.”
“Yes, it was,” Nick said. “I was standing in the corner watching the dancing when Beth Hanson found me. I thought it was your sister trying to steal a kiss, but it wasn't. By the time I realized who it was, your sister saw Beth kissing me. Lily stormed out of the church, and I chased after her. We had a terrible argument.”
“Did you explain what happened?” Kenny asked.
“I tried,” Nick said, “but she wouldn’t listen.”
“I’m surprised she didn’t calm down in a day or two,” Henry said.
“She might have,” Nick said, “but she used some very bad language, which I warned her about. Then she used the same language again.”
“What kind of language?” Kenny asked.
“She said I was a two-timing bastard and she hoped I burned in hell,” Nick said.
“Papa would have taken a strap to her for that,” Kenny said.
“I used my hand,” Nick said quietly.
“You spanked Lily?” Kenny asked, not sure if he should be angry or laugh.
“I did,” Nick said, “and I don’t regret it. No wife of mine is going to use language like that. I showed her what will happen every time words like that leave her lips.”
“You’re lucky my Papa never found out,” Henry told him, “he would have made you marry her after that.”
“I wish he would have then,” Nick said sadly.
“I don’t know if I should hug you or hit you,” Henry said, hiding his grin.
“I prefer you do neither,” Nick admitted. “I lost Lily that day, but maybe it’s for the best. Maybe we didn’t suit as much as I thought we did.”
“I still wish it was you marrying her,” Kenny said.
“Me too,” Henry added. “I’ll miss her when we’re in Oregon.”
“So will I,” Kenny said.
“I’ve missed her every day since the Harvest Festival,” Nick told them both. “It’s one of the reasons I’m willing to sell my farm and go to Oregon.”