Angeline Murray slammed the door as she left the little cottage she shared with her mother. Holy cow, that woman could make her angry. Acting as though she, Angeline, didn’t contribute to the household was offensive and demeaning, and Angeline wouldn’t stand for it. And yet none of her arguments had managed to do more than wither under her mother’s onslaught.
She was too old to still be living at home with her mother! Did Angeline honestly think her mother would support her for the rest of her life? It was time she got out in the world and made something of her life! And so on, and so on. Her mother had ranted until Angeline had seen nothing but red and, grabbing her bag and hat, had stormed from the house.
Huffing and saying things under her breath she’d never say aloud, Angeline stomped down the little walkway to the low fence that enclosed the yard. She’d show her mother. She’d go to town and find somewhere else to live, and when her mother got lonely, she’d refuse to come home.
Her gaze roamed over the yard, landing on the little plots of garden that filled the space.
She had planted all those flowers, herbs, and vegetables. She tended them, too, and more than half their food came from her gardens. What would her mother, a seamstress who also did laundry, do without her? How would she like to have to cook and clean when she got home from her work in town? Well, she’d find out when Angeline moved away. And Angeline certainly would, now.
Reaching the fence that separated their little front yard from the rest of the fields, Angeline swung the gate open with too much force. It was on loose hinges and when it swung back with similar force, it hit her on the shins. She let out a gasp of pain and bent to rub her leg. She cursed a little and considered kicking the gate one last time. That seemed like a chance to invite more pain, though, and so she straightened before settling for closing it properly, sliding the latch home.
If a thing was worth doing, it was worth doing properly. Wasn’t that the saying?
She caught a glimpse of her mother through the front window, spotting her mother’s worn, pale hand holding back the lace curtain. Angeline felt her rage increase. So, she was watching to make sure Angeline left, was she? Well, fine. She cast a hard stare of her own at her mother and, with her chin in the air, strode off down the path.
Which ended abruptly at the old hedge that demarcated the beginning of her grandfather’s corn field, or whatever it was he had grown there. He had died shortly after Angeline was born and so she’d never met the man.
Her mother spoke fondly of him, but always seemed bitter about him dying and leaving her alone. Coupled with Angeline’s no-good father, who had run out on them before her birth, men had not featured favorably in her life to this point.
Well, who needed them?
She certainly didn’t. There was nothing around the house that a man could do that she couldn’t hire someone to do or do herself. It was a point of pride for her.
Heading out across the fields, Angeline remembered the time she’d tried to grow crops in that soil. She’d been about thirteen years old at the time. She’d worked so hard on that field, tilling it, planting, watering—and the wheat had grown, to a point. Then a terrible storm had hit and the field, which was downhill from the house, had flooded so badly that the newly sprouted wheat had rotted away and died. It had broken her heart.
She’d tried a couple more times after that, being stupidly stubborn. She’d managed to grow a crop of corn plants, but for some reason the ears were small with few kernels. Angeline had given up on farming after that.
The memories that came unbidden did nothing to improve her mood. She kicked at clods of earth and stomped on to the track. It led to the little town of Alta Loma, which was their closest center of civilization. Or so her mother called it. Angeline called it a bend in the road. If it wasn’t for the railway tracks going through the town, there wouldn’t be a town at all by now.
She and her mother disagreed about this, too. Her mother insisted Alta Loma was growing and would soon be a proper town. To that, all Angeline had to say was to point out that they still didn’t have a post office. What kind of town had no post office?
And so, until that happened, in Angeline’s opinion Alta Loma wasn’t a town, it was a collection of buildings at a bend in the road.
As she walked in the humid summer weather, she began to rethink this brash idea of heading into town on foot. It was seven miles, which, although not insurmountable, was still a fair way to walk in the hot sun. She was glad she’d thought to grab her hat and bag from the table by the front door.
Walking through the farmland, dotted with trees and rolling gently to the horizon, Angeline began to calm down. Her rage at her mother saying she was a burden waned and soon she wondered if there wasn’t some truth in the matter. Angeline didn’t earn money. Although she took care of the house and grounds, she wasn’t bringing in coin. And coin mattered.
Perhaps she could find a way to stay at home with her mother and earn a living. That would be the best solution. After all, she loved her mother, despite their many arguments and differing opinions. She didn’t want to leave her all alone in that cottage in the middle of so much farmland. Their nearest neighbor was over thirty minutes’ walk and that was Mr. O’Neal, a most disagreeable old man if ever there was one.
What she needed was a job like her mother’s, or perhaps housekeeping for one of the families in town. Surely, someone was seeking a woman good at cleaning, cooking, baking and so on…? Yes, someone had to need that kind of service in town.
As she walked and thought, she hoped someone would come along the track and she could get a ride. But although this track served several farms as their main road, no one came along. She was utterly alone, with nothing but rolling hills, open farmland, and the sky to keep her company.
Trudging along, she saw the smoke of an approaching train billowing into the summer sky before she even reached the railroad tracks. The steam train was heading into the station about two miles along the track. Not every train stopped in Alta Loma, and this one seemed to be one of those speeding through.
The lack of train passengers stopping over in the town was likely why Alta Loma hadn’t grown at the same exponential rate that other towns along railway lines had. According to the papers, which came all the way from Galveston, many of the towns the trains stopped at habitually had seen a great increase in their size and wealth. Not Alta Loma. But it had only been five years since the line opened, so there was still hope.
Considering this, Angeline was forced to concede that she might have to look further afield than her little town for employment. What if she couldn’t find anything?
“Then you’re in a spot of bother,” she said to herself. “A large, very hot spot.” She could imagine her mother losing her temper about it and them having another fight. She sighed.
“Alright, Angeline, what will you do if there are no jobs in Alta Loma? Will you consider Hitchcock? It is a little far but perhaps…?” Her voice trailed off. She didn’t want to work in Hitchcock.
Another alternative presented itself and she shook her head to dislodge the terrible blasphemy of her thoughts. But being one of her thoughts, it was stubborn and combative and stayed, swirling around in her head.
You could find yourself a husband, it said without being as vulgar as resorting to words.
“No,” Angeline said. “Men only let you down.”
All men? it asked. She could imagine it cocking it head at her, if it had one, and wearing a sardonic smile.
“How would I know if all men are untrustworthy?” she snapped at no one but herself. “All I know is that my father thought something else was far more important than me and my mother and he left. My grandfather died, leaving my mother, and so men haven’t been a great feature in my life.”
Heavens, even the first teacher she’d ever had was a man and he’d left four years before she finished school. They were unreliable. They kept leaving.
No. She wouldn’t find herself a husband. That was not on the table and never would be. Angeline wasn’t keen to set herself up for more men-induced heartache. She’d be a spinster, and very happy as one. At least she would never let herself down, and she had friends. Friends were wonderful and seldom disappointed her.
Reaching the tracks, Angeline had to wait a few minutes for the train to pass. It clacked along the rails, passenger carriages up front and a whole lot of cargo cars at the back. She waited in the shade of an elm tree, watching several butterflies flitter past. They dipped and bobbed and though they never seeming to be getting anywhere, in no time they had moved on.
When the train had finally passed, she crossed the tracks, which were now safe, and walked into town.
The road on this fine summer’s day was largely empty of traffic. A lone dog sniffed the garbage pail outside the trader and then lifted his leg to leave his mark. When the dog moved on, Angeline saw Mrs. Lomax, the schoolteacher, coming out of the trader. She hurried over, waving. After all, that was her destination, as well.
Mrs. Lomax, dressed in a formal navy-blue skirt and jacket, waved back. They had butted heads when she was teaching Angeline but since then had struck up a cordial acquaintanceship.
“Well, what a surprise,” Mrs. Lomax said, smiling brightly. She had a basket on her arm, covered with a cloth. “What brings you to town?”
Angeline smiled and made a noncommittal gesture. “My mother has dreams of getting rid of me,” she said with a small shrug.
“Oh dear, why?” Mrs. Lomax asked.
Angeline sighed. Well, since she’d opened the door to this conversation, she’d have to walk on through. Reluctantly, she paraphrased her mother by saying, “I have to find a way to contribute more to the household, according to her.”
“Oh?” Mrs. Lomax asked. “I thought you were working at one of the farms?”
“That was a harvest job,” Angeline explained. She’d worked picking pears on Farmer Berry’s farm for the last ten years. But it was only a harvest position and for the rest of the year, she had no means of income.
“Well, then I wish you luck,” Mrs. Lomax said. “As a fine young lady of twenty-four, if I’m not mistaken, I’m certain you’ll find something to your liking.”
Angeline was actually twenty-five, but she nodded and didn’t correct her old teacher. Instead, she smiled and thanked her.
“Of course,” Mrs. Lomax continued, “you could look for a husband. It’s not anywhere as onerous as you’ve always proclaimed it to be.”
Angeline must have let her disgust at the suggestion show because Mrs. Lomax’s expression became amused. She shook her head at Angeline sighed.
“It would make your mother terribly happy if you made a good match,” she said. “I hear Todd Wilson is looking for a wife.”
“Todd?” Angeline asked unable to hide her distaste at this suggestion.
The man in question was a pig farmer and had always made Angeline’s skin crawl. He had an unfortunate condition that made him sweat a lot. Coupled with a round face and small piggy eyes, a lack of imagination, and a tendency to be messy, he was the least appealing option she’d ever been confronted with.
“Well, it was only a suggestion,” Mrs. Lomax said. “It’s been good to see you. Please give your mother my best.”
“I will,” Angeline said.
For a long moment, she watched the schoolteacher walked down the road. Had it really come to that? Would she have to consider matches like Todd Wilson? No. Not ever. She’d rather go and work in Hitchcock than be saddled with someone like Todd.
Entering the trader, Angeline was instantly surrounded by the smells of childhood delight. In all the years of her life, things in the trader had changed little. The store still smelled of dust, candles, boiled sweets, and lavender soap.
Mr. Guthrie had run the store for as long as Angeline could remember. He was a tall man, thin and bespectacled. He spent the time when the store was quiet reading books. As far as men went, he was probably the one Angeline had the best memories of.
On slow summer days when she was a kid, he’d taken to reading stories to the children outside his store. And along with wonderful tales of fancy and excitement in far-off lands, he’d also handed out boiled sweets. As the child of a struggling mother, Angeline hadn’t had a great many sweets in her life. Each of those that Mr. Guthrie had given her was a treasured memory.
He’d always been kind to her, even when the other kids had been nasty because of her olive skin and dark hair. They’d called her all sorts of names, thinking she was part Indian. Of course, she wasn’t. Her father was Spanish, but that didn’t make things any better.
She greeted him with a bright, happy smile, and Mr. Guthrie smiled back.
“Angeline,” he said leaning forward on the counter. “What can I get you today?”
“I’d love a paper,” she said.
“Well, I have the latest in from Galveston. Will that do?” Mr. Guthrie asked.
She nodded and handed him the coins as he slid the paper to her over the counter.
Since the store was dead quiet and she was the only one in there, she opened the paper to the back where all the wanted ads were printed. With her cheeks sucked in, a childhood affectation when reading she’d never grown out of, Angeline studied the advertisements.
“Looking for anything in particular?” Mr. Guthrie asked.
“A job,” Angeline said.
“What kind of job?”
“The paying kind.” Angeline offered him a rueful grin.
“Naturally,” Mr. Guthrie said with a chuckle. “Well, how about this one?” He pointed to an advertisement in the paper.
Angeline read it and at first shook her head. “It’s all the way in Galveston!”
“No… it’s on a dairy farm this side of the town,” Mr. Guthrie said. “And since you’re such a dab hand at housekeeping, I would think it would be perfect for you.”
Angeline considered this. She was a good housekeeper. Nothing was out of place or left undone in their house. She took great pride in the work. But it was a live-in position, and that would mean leaving her mother all alone in the cottage. She couldn’t do that, leave her mother alone, could she?
For a while, they read the advertisements together. Mr. Guthrie, always impartial, gave his thoughts on each with no bias despite his picking out that one advertisement for her. Angeline um-ed and ah-ed over them.
Another advertisement was to work at the local train station mopping the floors. It sounded like a lot of hard work for little pay. And as Mr. Guthrie pointed out, it had a complete lack of scope. There was another position as a nanny for a family in Hitchcock, but once again that was a live-in position and involved one of Angeline’s least favorite things, little children.
After half an hour, she realized that Mr. Guthrie had been right after all. There really was only one advertisement worth answering. She bought a pen, paper, and envelope and wrote a hasty reply. Mr. Guthrie read it, changed it, and had her rewrite it. Then, they slipped it into the envelope and addressed it.
“I’ll send it with Trevor when he does his run to Hitchcock and Galveston,” Mr. Guthrie said. “It should reach Mr. Tucker in about two days’ time.”
Angeline nodded her thanks. Well, she’d done it. She’d applied for a job. Hopefully, Mother would be satisfied with that.
The Tucker Dairy Farm outside Galveston Texas
Ethan Tucker silently counted to ten. Did this man think him a fool? Offering a fraction of what the calves were worth, and assuming he’d be fine with it, was an insult to his intelligence.
Since the calves were male, Tucker had no use for them on a dairy farm and so, as was his habit, once they had been weaned, he was selling them to another farmer. But Mr. Wells seemed to think Tucker had lost his business sense and obviously wanted to cheat him.
“I’m afraid that won’t do,” Tucker said. “Surely, you know that each of these very healthy calves is worth twice what you’re offering.”
“Healthy, you say?” Mr. Wells said, hitching up his trousers in an attempt to get them over his sagging paunch. His efforts were fruitless. “They look a little scrawny.”
“Scrawny?” he asked, looking at the seven-month-old calves.
They were anything but. Having lived on their mother’s milk, they were some of the best-looking cattle he’d ever seen. Their coats were glossy and smooth, their bones strong, and they were alive and perky. How dare Wells say such things?
Tucker just about flew at the man. But before he let go the tirade that was burning his tongue, he had a better idea.
“You know what? I don’t think you deserve my boys,” Tucker said, folding his well-muscled arms across his broad chest. “I think I’m keeping them.”
“Don’t be a fool, Tucker!” Mr. Wells said. “What will you do with them?”
Tucker shrugged. “I don’t see as how it’s your problem at all.” He turned to his farm hand, a giant of a man named Malcolm Redding. “Help Mr. Wells find his horse, will you?”
“Sure thing, Tucker,” Mal said. Turning to Mr. Wells, who looked tiny beside the huge man, he smiled. “Let’s go, Mr. Wells. You’re done here.”
Wells was anything but happy. He stared at Tucker, daggers in his eyes.
“I’m sure you have business elsewhere,” Tucker said with a fake smile. “Don’t let me detain you.”
“You’ll never sell another bull in this town, you hear me?” Wells yelled as Mal moved to block him off from Tucker.
It probably wasn’t the best time to laugh and yet Tucker found himself chuckling. What a silly situation. Of course, he’d be able to sell the bulls to someone else. Wells wasn’t the only farmer out there. What an empty threat that was.
Still, Wells yelled his insults and threats all the way up the drive. Tucker watched him go, his arms still folded across his chest. This was not smart business. It was stupid of him to get so upset, but he loved his cows. He truly did.
Each one of them was special to him, and Tucker spent a lot of time and effort making sure that his dairy cows were healthy and happy. Well, as happy as a cow could be. That meant taking care to treat them properly, and he had a gut feeling Wells would never treat his boys well. He was a self-serving person with no empathy. No good for Tucker’s boys.
He walked to the paddock fence and, sticking his hand through, let the calves caper over to him and rub up against his hand. They trusted him to take care of them and he would never let them down.
“What am I going to do with you boys?” he asked himself.
There were seven of them. Seven was a large number to keep around the farm where they were essentially useless. He couldn’t use them for mating since the cows were their mothers, aunts, and sisters. He sighed heavily, thinking hard. Maybe he could find another use for them that didn’t involve selling them.
He’d have to before his father came to the farm again and saw them still there. That would not be a welcome sight for the old man. He’d get stroppy and Tucker would have to go through all the effort to placate him. Although his father no longer ran the farm, he was still involved and made a lot of the business deals in town, making sure they got top dollar for their milk.
“He’s gone,” Mal said, returning. “He looked mighty upset with you.” The big man chuckled. “You have a gift for upsetting people.”
“Wouldn’t call it a gift,” Tucker said, smiling with a shallow shrug. “I couldn’t let him take the boys. Let’s get them back to their paddock. We can work out something to do with them later. Maybe Mr. Becker needs some strong males.”
They turned back to the calves and watched them chewing on grass and playfully gamboling around. Tucker opened the gate, and the little ones came trotting out. They were so used to walking around the farm, moving from one field to the next, that they walked along side the two men with no fuss.
Mal walked beside Tucker, a thoughtful look on his large, bearded face. “Tucker,” he said slowly, “have you ever considered their manure?”
It was an odd question, even for his friend. Tucker studied Mal to see if there was any humor in his expression, but his clear blue eyes were as serious as ever.
“Their manure?” Tucker asked with a confused chuckle. “What about it?”
Mal ran a hand down his full, black beard before answering. Clearly, he was expecting Tucker to naysay his idea from the get-go. Recognizing this, and knowing how important it was to have his staff and friends feel as though they could talk to him about anything, Tucker smiled encouragingly.
“Well,” Mal began, “when I was a kid, we had a couple of cows and my ma, God rest her soul, used to put as much of their manure as we could scrape up on our kitchen garden. I have to say, Tuck, I’ve never seen vegetables like she used to grow anywhere else. Serious, the marrows were this big!” He held his large hands about four feet apart.
Tucker thought that had to be an exaggeration.
“I’m not exaggerating,” Mal said as though reading his mind. “Think about it. There are crop farmers all around us. They might pay a good couple of dollars to buy that manure. Especially if we turn it into compost, that’s the real winner. They’ll have crops like they’ve never had before.”
“And it’s all because of the cow manure?” Tucker asked.
Mal nodded. “It’s good stuff. For plants, I mean.” He nodded enthusiastically. “It also means the boys pay for themselves.” He patted one as they walked.
Tucker hated to name them when he was going to sell them, but he always thought of that young boy as Stripe. He had a white patch of fur down his back that looked as though the little guy had squeezed under a newly painted fence.
Perhaps Mal’s suggestion was a way to keep Stripe and his friends and still have them be useful. After all, cows ate a lot of food and produced a fair amount of manure. If they could gather it up and sell it…
“I’ll give it some thought,” Tucker said. “Thanks, Mal.” He slapped him on the shoulder.
The big man smiled and moved off to see to the calves, who trotted beside him happily. The other cows were in the bottom pasture today and Mal would no doubt let them join the others. There was no reason to separate them now and Tucker had found that cows loved to live in herds, especially with members of their own families. It made them happier and easier to work with.
Not all the work on the farm was done in the sunshine and fresh air. Although that was Tucker’s favorite part of the job, working with the animals, he still had all the paperwork to do. With that in mind, he decided to retire to his study.
There were the usual bills to be dealt with—vet’s bills, feed for the cows, and repairs to the farm, which seemed an endless project. They were easily handled and would only take a trip to the bank to sort out. The most pressing issue at the moment was his lack of housekeeper.
Mrs. Shaw, the lady who had taken care of his home for the last twenty years, had suddenly retired three weeks ago. She’d handed in her notice and left the next day. To say it was abrupt was no exaggeration. What Tucker could possibly have done to warrant such behavior was beyond him and all attempts to reconcile with Mrs. Shaw had fallen on deaf ears.
His letters had been returned unopened and when he went to the little cabin she was renting from a friend of his, she had received him kindly enough. She’d said the work was too strenuous. Looking after four men was a lot of work and she was getting on in years. Her back had been giving her a lot of trouble and the doctor said she had to stop all heavy lifting.
“Well, that’s the laundry out the window, then,” she’d told Tucker. “I’m so sorry, Tuck. But for my own health, I have to retire.”
She explained that she’d thought it best to cut ties. After all, she’d looked after him all his life and she loved him. If she’d worked out her notice, she’d never have been able to get herself to leave.
Although sad, Tucker had understood and been forced to accept that Mrs. Shaw was gone.
At first, he’d thought he could fend for himself. After all, how hard could housework really be? Very hard, as it turned out. Between them, the men had little knowledge of what needed doing. They soon found out that grass-stained, cow-smelling clothes, splattered in mud, took a great deal of soaking and scrubbing to clean.
Food didn’t cook itself and groceries didn’t magically appear in the larder. Things in the cold room under the kitchen floor began to go off as they weren’t used up as needed. Things ran out and between looking after the cows, fixing things on the farm—which was old and constantly in need of new paint and repairs—and doing the housework, they were all suffering.
It was time to get a woman in the house.
Entering through the kitchen door, Tucker found George, one of his farm hands, wearing a jaunty floral apron and a large grin. He was holding a bowl that he was whisking happily.
“Ah, and what are we having today?” Tucker asked, trying to sound enthusiastic. They’d had some meals that were right on the cusp of being inedible.
“Well, we’re in for a treat,” George said, excitedly. “We’re having cheese omelet and toast, with some fresh carrots from the garden, because Harris says we have to eat them.”
This last George added sounding dubious. He didn’t believe in vegetables of any kind, ever. Although he would eat them if there was no way to avoid them.
Tucker tried a smile and felt he was failing miserably. They honestly needed a housekeeper. Before George killed them. Every meal with him was eggs, toast, and something, usually bacon. It had been fine for the first couple of days, but now Tucker was starting to feel a lot like he was turning into an egg. George seemed perfectly happy, though, smiling his toothy grin beneath his mop of brown hair.
“Can’t wait,” Tucker said, sounding unconvincing to his own ears, and beat a hasty retreat to his study down the hall.
The less said about the food before it landed on the table, the better. Otherwise, he’d run out of things to say during the meal that would keep George happy. After all, the man had volunteered to take on the duties of cook until a suitable woman could be found. Tucker couldn’t find fault in his enthusiasm even though his execution of the duties left much to be desired. Anyway, it wasn’t as though he or the others were any better at food preparation.
Once inside his inner sanctum, Tucker closed the door and sighed. He needed a proper cook, someone who had more than a passing acquaintance with vegetables and meats other than bacon. Oh, how he longed for roast chicken, pepper steak pies, roast vegetables and mashed potatoes, green beans in that vinegar sauce Mrs. Shaw always made, and her baked apple cinnamon muffins. His mouth watered at the mere thought of them.
He also needed someone who could not only wash but also iron the laundry without burning holes in his shirts, change his sheets, and wash the dishes without chipping and cracking them.
He’d lost three plates and a glass so far to George and Harris’ ham-fistedness. Not that he could blame the men. They were doing their best. But as both were farm hands, trained to milk and care for cows, they were a lot stronger and less coordinated in the kitchen than a woman would be.
Tucker moved to his desk where a pile of letters and the newspaper lay waiting for him. He sat in the chair his father and his grandfather before him had all sat in and regarded the pile. Perhaps in this mound of paper lay his salvation.
From the other side of the door came a loud crashing sound and the unmistakable gloing of an iron pan hitting the floor.
He sighed and said a silent prayer hoping he’d find a suitable candidate soon. The advertisement had been running for just over two weeks now and although he’d had a fair few responses, none had been right. Several were married and had children, which made Tucker nervous. This was a live-in position, since the farm wasn’t close to town and traveling back and forth would cause the housekeeper a great deal of expense and time.
Other hopefuls were hardly more than children themselves, ranging from seventeen upwards to about nineteen years. Although he didn’t mind them being so young, he simply felt they might be too flighty for the position. Mrs. Shaw had handled the household accounts and he wanted someone levelheaded enough to take that duty on, as well. What he wanted was Mrs. Shaw back.
Flipping through the envelopes, he selected one and opened it with the letter opener that always sat on his desk. The letter inside was from his sister Enola. She had married a banker a year ago and she loved to write to Tucker, keeping him apprised of all his parents and her husband were up to. He’d read that one later.
Another envelope caught his attention. He slit that one open and began to read. It was a response to the advertisement he’d placed. A Miss Schumer from Houston. She said she was twenty-three years old, single, and had worked as a housekeeper for a rich older lady for the last five years.
She sounded perfect—perhaps too perfect. She ticked every single box Tucker had and something about it bothered him. He put the letter down and, finding another reply to his advertisement, slit the envelope open.
This letter was from a Miss Angeline Murray. She lived just outside Alta Loma with her mother and did all the housekeeping chores around the place. Her writing was full of character and Tucker found himself smiling as he read about her attention to detail, her ability to bake, cook, clean, sew, and all the rest. It sounded an awful lot like the rest of the replies he’d had, but there was one difference. This letter sounded heartfelt and genuine.
Miss Murray wasn’t putting on airs or making exaggerated claims. At least, he thought she wasn’t because of the language she used. There were no flowery bits, no extra adjectives, and no rambling. Straight-forward, precise, and with no spelling or grammatical errors. Clearly, she’d been educated.
By the time George called him to lunch, Tucker had made up his mind and penned a response. He emerged from his study with the letter in hand.
“What’s that?” George asked as he dished up the omelet and toast. Mal and Harris both sat at the table already, looking scrubbed and unenthusiastic for the meal. Tucker had to admit his guts also rolled at the idea of more eggs, but he held the letter aloft and smiled.
“I think I’ve found our housekeeper!”
Mal and Harris both let out whoops of joy. “Can I go and post it now?” Harris asked.
Tucker was about to say yes when he saw George’s smile fade and shook his head. “After lunch will be fine,” he said.
Harris sighed. “Fine.” He began to shovel the eggs into his mouth.
Tucker sat and choked the eggs down with a forced grateful smile at George. The reign of the all-day breakfast was about to come to an end, and he couldn’t wait.
“Rescued by his Healing Touch” is an Amazon Best-Selling novel, check it out here!
Having been abandoned by her own father when she was still unborn, Angeline Murray has learnt the hard way never to trust men. Eager to take control of her life and determined not to get married, she finds a job as a housekeeper at a farm. Her tenacity, along with her stunning beauty, soon sparks the interest of her dashing employer. Yet, can she get past her prejudice against men and allow her very feelings to bloom?
Some wounds are just too deep to heal…
Ethan Tucker runs his family’s dairy farm, bearing this great responsibility with pride and efficiency. When his housekeeper suddenly quits, throwing everything into chaos, he can’t quite believe that an unyielding woman will come to his rescue and fill the emptiness in his soul. However, when he finds out that his father has been arranging his marriage out of financial interest behind his back, his world collapses. Will Ethan fulfill his duty or rebel against his rational self and follow his unprecedented emotions?
He can’t ignore the stirring in his heart any longer…
The world is full of unexpected events and while Angeline and Ethan try to come to terms with their unspoken feelings, more hardships will lead them to disarray. Will their love be strong enough to save the farm and their life’s efforts? Or will they eventually bury their sentiments along with the chance to salvage everything?
“Rescued by his Healing Touch” is a historical western romance novel of approximately 80,000 words. No cheating, no cliffhangers, and a guaranteed happily ever after.