Lost in a Whirlwind of Emotions – Extended Epilogue

One Year Later

“Can you believe Alanna and David got married before us?” Frank asked as he smoothed out his suit jacket, Helen helping everything to stay right. 

“I’m glad you waited,” Helen said. “I know it was hard, but I swear it was the right thing.”

“Now that the day is upon us, I agree. If you had asked a few months ago, I’m not sure I would have been so patient. I think I’m ready.”

Helen straightened out his tie. “Okay, let’s go.”

They walked into the living room where the priest stood, waiting for the wedding party. There was also Maeve’s mother, father, grandfather, and another young woman named Jessie, that they had paid to come with them: Maeve said it was the person who helped her grandfather with her gone. Frank said he would have been happy to pay her way through, but they had saved to bring her through themselves.

Her grandfather’s health had significantly improved. His leg and arm were healed, and he had told them he was ready to work in the fields whenever they were ready for them. Of course, no one had agreed to that idea. Now that they could afford it, they wouldn’t let him work. But there were plenty of opportunities for him to be with the family in their little house, which was all that really mattered. 

And now the wedding ceremony was at Maeve and Frank’s future house, while the family now had a house of their own. 

Maeve came out a moment later, walking into the room with full grace and beauty, the purple dress beautiful against her tan, sun-kissed skin. The breath caught in Frank’s throat, and he found himself close to tears. She gave him a small smile, and the tears poured. 

When she got to the front, she reached over and grabbed his hands, giving them a small squeeze. There looked at each other, and Frank saw the tears in Maeve’s eyes, but they weren’t spilling over quite yet. 

Frank barely kept up in the wedding, so engrossed in Maeve. He knew he had made promises about taking care of her and loving her, which was all that mattered. Then, they shared a kiss that was supposed to be their first, and Maeve and Frank both laughed for a moment when he said it. To be fair, they had never kissed the way Alanna and David had before they were married, and their relationship was going just fine. 

Maeve promised to love and obey him, and the whole time they were holding hands, which was more prolonged contact than they had ever had before. He didn’t know the moment that it started, but eventually, she was crying too. When it all was over, and they began walking to the barn where they were celebrating, he continued to hold one of her hands and leaned over to whisper, “You okay?”

“Much better than okay,” she said, and she leaned over to kiss his cheek. Apparently, she couldn’t wait to kiss him either.

Soon it was time to celebrate, something he looked forward to even more than the wedding.

The music and moonshine flowed during the afterparty, and Frank couldn’t imagine a better day. Anytime anyone wasn’t looking, he and Maeve shared secret kisses, short and chaste but filled with happiness.

***

During one of these times, Maeve’s mother came up to them. “We got you a gift.”

“You really didn’t have to do that,” Maeve said.

“Maybe we didn’t have to, but we wanted to. Besides, we didn’t pay for it.” Maeve’s mother reached into her dress pocket and pulled out a small pearl necklace. “They’re not real,” she said. “I’m sorry about that. But they are your grandmother’s. I want you to have every chance to be as close to her as you can get. She would want to be here, you know, and she is in spirit. I think the priest would agree with that.”

“It’s beautiful,” Maeve said, choking up. “Can you put them on me?” She turned, and her mother carefully clasped the necklace around her neck.

“You look amazing,” Frank leaned to kiss her again. 

“You would say that no matter what I was wearing.”

“Because it’s true.” Alanna walked over, and Maeve leaned in close and put her hand on her stomach.

“You’re starting to show,” Maeve loud-whispered over the music. 

“I know,” Alanna said. “Not much longer before everyone will know.”

“They’re going to be so happy for you. You’re going to be a great mother.”

“I didn’t have a good example.”

“Maybe not, but I know you. You have nothing to worry about.”

Alanna smiled at her. “I’m so happy for you both. Even though you’re just now getting married, you two have been such a good example of a happy relationship. Maybe you haven’t taught me how to be a mother, but you have taught me to be a wife.”

Maeve felt her eyes fill with tears, then turned her head away and down, trying to keep from crying. “I hope we’ll all get to know my parents better soon, and that we’ll have a chance to see a good marriage in them.” 

Frank looked at her, and Maeve was pretty sure he was remembering when she saw her parents weren’t the perfect example of a healthy marriage. But Maeve really hoped that would turn out not to be true when they had a healthier lifestyle. 

“My parents gave me this necklace,” she said, leaning in to show Alanna. “Before you say anything, they’re not real. It’s just my grandmother’s.”

“It’s beautiful,” Alanna said. “Real or not. I’m glad your parents were able to come.” Now it was Alanna’s turn to look down and away. 

Maeve reached out and grabbed her hand. “I know this must be very hard for you, not having either of them. You were so brave to get married without them. I can’t imagine that was easy. You’re going to have a shot at being happy again with David. I know you already are. And soon, you’ll be a mother. And you’re going to do so much better than your mother did. I know this is scary, but you’re going to break this cycle. You’re going to be the best mother out there.”

“Do you really think so?” Alanna asked.

“I’m positive. I can’t wait to see you thrive. Before you know it, I’m going to be asking you for help with learning how to be a mother.”

Alanna asked. “I doubt I’ll be the one to ask, but if you have any questions about how it went, I will be sure to answer as best as I can.” Alanna paused, looking at her. “I did have one question,” she said. 

“Oh? And what’s that?” 

“Well, I’ll be giving birth in a few months, and if my mother were around, she would be there. Do you think you will be there with me? If it’s too intimate to do with a friend I understand, but—” 

“I’d be honored,” Maeve interrupted. “I’ll stay at your head, anyway. Nothing to see that I don’t want to see.” 

“Do you think I can do it? I’ve heard…” this time, she trailed off, not needing to be interrupted.

“You’ll get a baby at the end,” Maeve said, “so it’ll all be worth it.” 

“That’s easy to say when you’re not the one giving birth,” Alanna said with a laugh.

“True. But I’m hoping I will be as soon as possible.”

“I’m sure you will be,” Alanna answered. “I’ll pray, though.”

“Prayer never hurts.” 

“Well, I’ll let the next person talk to you, but thank you for being so kind to me, for listening to me complain even on the day of your wedding.”

“I’m honored to have you complain to me on the day of my wedding,” Maeve said, then she leaned in and kissed her cheek. “Thank you for coming, Alanna. You have no idea how much that means to me.”

“I wouldn’t miss it for the world.” 

***

Helen walked up and kissed them both on their cheeks. “Congratulations,” Helen said. “I’m so happy to have you, Maeve. You’re the best thing to ever happen to our family, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that. My husband was amazing, but he didn’t stay very long. You’re everything I could have wanted in a sister-in-law.”

“Well, don’t forget,” Maeve pointed out, “you may have another husband on your own soon.”

“Things could still fall apart,” Helen said. “It’s new, and it’s just letters.”

“Don’t forget Maeve and I met through letters,” Frank said. “If it’s the best thing that happened to us, well, your husband will never be as good as Maeve, but we could have another pretty good option.”

“That’s true,” Helen said. “And he does seem to be kind.”

“I’m sure he is,” Frank said. “And I appreciate you letting us help with the letters, just like you did for me.” 

“I know that you two know a lot more than I do when it comes to this,” she answered. “You made it work, after all, and I may have known what women like for Maeve, but you’re much more equipped to tell me what men like for me.” 

“That’s true,” Frank said with a laugh, “But I trusted Matthew as a best friend, so maybe you shouldn’t trust me as much as you are.”

“Maybe you pick friends poorly,” Helen conceded, “but you’re very good at picking out partners.” 

“Thank you,” Maeve said. “I’m lucky to have you all too.” 

“I just hope to have a niece or nephew soon, since I can’t have a baby quite yet. Apparently, you’re supposed to wait to get married first.”

“In that case,” Maeve said, “you may want to give us nine months.”

“I’ll be extra kind,” Helen said. “I’ll give you ten.”

“It’s going to be hard when you’re married, though,” Frank said.

“What makes you say that?”

“Well, you won’t live with us anymore. You’re going to move out to be with some husband that we don’t even want there.” 

“I think you’ll want him there,” Helen answered. “You’re just bitter.” 

“Of course, I’m bitter. I was rather hoping you would stay with us forever.”

“We can make a house on the same land and share a farm.”

“And you have to come cook every day,” Maeve said.

Helen laughed. “Maeve, I know you know how to cook. But very well. Maybe you and I can take turns cooking, you do it sometimes, and I do it sometimes. We can eat dinner together every night.”

“Good,” Frank said. “I suppose I can live with that. But I don’t want you ever to say you want dinner with just your husband.”

“And if I want dinner with just you?” Maeve teased.

“Well, in that case, we can eat dinner alone.”

Helen scoffed. “You sure changed your mind quickly.”

“No, I knew from the beginning that what my wife wants matters a lot.”

“More than what your sister wants?”

“We’re one body now,” Frank pointed out. “One person. I can’t very well expect my foot to run off when I don’t want it to. If part of my body wants it, then I have to listen. I’d hate to step on my own hand.” 

“That makes literally no sense,” Helen said, “but I suppose I can agree that you’re one body now.”

***

After the party, it was time for everyone to return to their farms, and they walked together in the dark, talking and laughing and generally being merry.

Maeve’s grandfather bounded up to them. “Do you see how fast I’m going now?” he asked.

“I know,” Maeve said. “If I’m being honest, I was afraid you would never recover.”

“I’m better than ever,” her grandfather responded. “I didn’t think I would recover either, and I had decided it was best to starve to death than keep eating food when I couldn’t heal.” 

“Don’t you think that’s rather morbid?” Maeve asked. “And the very last thing we’d want for you?” 

He ignored that. “You saved me. Your mother made me see the doctor when he came, so that I could heal. I wasn’t sure I wanted to, but she kept pointing out that you wanted me to be there when you got married. So really, it’s like you saved me twice.”

“I would do it all over again if it could help you,” Maeve said. “Every last thing.” 

“I don’t think you’ll need to. When we left, the doctor said I was healthy as a horse. In fact, I know your parents may disagree, but I think I’m ready to get back to work.”

“I disagree as well,” Maeve said. “We need you to stay in the house with Helen and me. We need you to keep us safe. Who knows if the town will follow us. And you know how to cook the basics. After grandmother died, before you moved in with us, you did that all on your own.”

“You’re just trying to keep me in one place. You and Helen can handle that all yourselves.” 

“You’re right,” Maeve said. “I am trying to keep you in the house. I know you’re too smart to fall for any silly games. But let’s be honest, you aren’t ready to work in the fields. You are just so used to working all the time that you can’t imagine not working.”

“Who said there was a problem with that?”

“I didn’t say it was a problem. I just explained what you like to do. Or like may not even be the right word but are used to doing.”

“Only lazy people don’t work.”

“I don’t work.”

Her grandfather seemed to consider that. “Well, I know I am used to many of the women working, but it’s different. You’re running a home. When things weren’t so bad in Ireland, back in the day, your grandmother had stayed in and run the house. Believe me, with six children and a sizeable vegetable garden, that was enough of a job of its own. And hopefully, you’ll have six children of your own soon.”
“You’re already saying soon?”

“Be happy I’m not saying in nine months.” 

“Well, I suppose I do have to be thankful for small victories.”

“Your grandmother had children right away, and so did your mother. I know your mother wanted children from the beginning, but she struggled and kept trying, and she had you. That’s what you need to do. Just keep trying. But if, like your mother, you struggle, know it’s not your own fault, no matter what people say. Sometimes, women have a hard time. But Frank seems like a good guy, and I think he’ll stick around for it.”

“Of course I will,” Frank said. Maeve remembered her mother losing babies and winced. It was incredibly hard on her, both physically and mentally. Maeve never wanted to go through that. Frank seemed to sense her worry and put an arm around her waist. “But who knows, maybe we won’t have to deal with this at all. Maybe it makes more sense to not put scary thoughts in Maeve’s head quite yet.”

Maeve hadn’t expected Frank to stand up for her like that, so it left her quite surprised. Still, she was thankful. Frank wasn’t going to let people talk in a way that scared her or slandered her. This was a small example, but she had to hope that, with time, Frank would show this trait even more. 

“It’s okay,” Maeve said, turning and kissing his cheek. “Grandfather is just watching out for me, weren’t you?” she said. Still, right after kissing him, she whispered, “Thank you” into his ear. Her grandfather was mostly deaf, so there wasn’t much fear of him overhearing. Mostly, he read lips, and she had turned her head. Frank gave the slightest of nods, and the hand around her waist squeezed her for a moment.

“But he’s right, of course,” her grandfather said. “After all, maybe it will go swimmingly. I hope for both of your sakes it does. It’s the best outcome of a successful marriage. Your father is the sixth best thing to ever happen to me,” he teased.

“Who is the child you’re living with?” Maeve asked, giving his side a poke.

“Yes, of course,” her grandfather said. “It doesn’t make him my favorite, I don’t have favorites, but it does mean he’s not my sixth. Unless you say they all tie for sixth place. Well, maybe seventh.”

“What beats it?” Maeve asked, curious rather than offended.

“Marrying your grandmother, of course. I know I lost her sooner than I lost most of my children, but she will always be very special to me.” 

“Of course,” Frank said. “I don’t think Maeve will ever stop being the best thing that ever happened to me.”

Maeve kissed his cheek again, overcome with happiness.

THE END


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31 thoughts on “Lost in a Whirlwind of Emotions – Extended Epilogue”

  1. Hello, my dears! I would love to know if you enjoyed the story and of course which was your favorite part! I hope you were overjoyed by the conclusion of Maeve and Frank’s romance and of course how the family came together! Let me know with your comments here! Thank you – always! ❤️

    1. Storyline was ok. But not very well written. Very choppy with a lot of mistakes in wording. What happened???

    2. Loved it! I fell in love with Maeve and Frank….. I was transported to Oregon, the lumber mill and their home. People helped each other out in early times, as evidenced when they made the trek to California. Great read

    3. Thank you for another beautiful story of love family and friendship altogether respecting and trusting each other to get to the truth. 😄

    4. Thank you for a very enjoyable story. I loved when Frank and Maeve finally got married and even part of the town left to go to California. I am looking forward to reading more of your books.

  2. Such a wonderful book, and the extended epilogue is a really good ending.
    Plus this mail order bride helps to bring the truth of what is going on with the ‘bosses’ of the lumber yard. And it shows how love grows and continues to grow no matter what.

  3. A very good story that teaches us that standing together in truth and with God all things are possible. The extended epilogue was a great ending.

  4. This was not a book that I expected to be so complicated. I was a tad lost throughout, but I am glad that I finally finished it.

    1. I am sorry you thought so my dear! I did have a lot on my mind when writing it and this was reflected apparently in the story! I hope you did enjoy it while reading it though!

  5. Lumber town were a challenge in themselves. Your characters were portrayed with fatal flaws and courage that kept the story moving. I enjoyed the story.

  6. This book was not at all what I expected! It was amazing, as the author’s work always is! It was heartfelt, warm, caring, loving, inspiring! Amazing characters and storyline! You will not be disappointed!!

  7. Thank you for books that keep me awake, had to pick! up the book to find what’s was happening next! Couldn’t wait! Go story! Looking forward to next book 😊

  8. I enjoyed the book asi do all your books but this one seemed a little choppy and not complete. I would have liked a little less getting ready and more after they got there, got set up where, built houses and got her family over. One thing I was disappointed in- you never had her pick out a kitten and care for it. But did still enjoy it!

    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment dear Lin! Your feedback can surely make me a better writer! I am glad you enjoyed the story nonetheless! 🌺

  9. I love all your books. My only complaint is that l have to constantly leave my email every time to get the extended epilogue. I started doing that about a week ago and since then may email is full every day with other authors wanting me to read their books. I’m constantly having to clean out my in box.
    It’s very annoying.

    1. Thank you dear Debbie! Just to be clear, your email is safe with me when you submit it to get the extended epilogue. There is no way other authors have access to it via my extended epilogue link. I am sorry to hear that but I don’t think this has anything to do with the extended epilogue of my stories!

  10. Wow, what a story! I had to put it down every once in a while, because I got anxious when I thought the might get hurt.

    1. I am glad you got lost in the story as much dear Barbara! It means the world to me knowing that you enjoyed it as much! Thank you for your sweet comment! 💕

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