New Beginnings

Painting by Berthold Woltze

The train ride had only begun and already the guy behind her was getting on ber last nerve!

If there would be more seats available she would move, though he probably would have followed her. She wasn’t fearful of him, simply put, he was only annoying. Kristy hadn’t said a word to him, thinking he would be bored and move on. Unfortunately he didn’t seem to care if anyone responded to him or not. He continued rambling away, as the train chugged down the tracks.

After what felt like an unending speech he finally came up for air and took a break. Maybe he had got the message that she wasn’t interested in conversation.

Kristy let out a deep breath. Peace at last. The question was how long would it last? She would have to try and not think about that, while savoring the moment.

Hadn’t he noticed that she was wearing all black. She was in mourning. Well, at least that is the impression her clothes were to give.

Didn’t do much good from keeping over talkative men away. Her sister had insisted that she wear all black to keep men away from her. Why did she listen to her sister? She felt like a fraud.

Nicole, her sister, meant well. She was looking out for her. Had always looked out for her little sis. Their mom had died when Kristy was only five years old. Nicole had to take over for it was only the two of them.

Their Dad had fallen into the depths of grief and while he worked to keep a roof over their heads, that is about all he did. He was distant as far as affection went. Sorrow had eaten him up. Five years later he had a heart attack. Died of a broken heart.

The train clickety clacked down the track and Kristy thought of where she was beaded. How she would miss Nicole, but it was time to strike out on her own.

Nicole was a newlywed, they didn’t need a houseguest. She had insisted that it was fine for Kristy to stay, but Kristy refused. She would be okay. Well, that is what she kept telling her knotted up stomach.

She had dozed for a little while and woke back up. Eating the sandwich and apple she bad packed, she began to feel slightly bored.

“Hi! So where are you headed? I thought you may be bored so here I am.” He grinned broadly.

“Thanks for your concerns, but I am fine.” The young man looked at her for a few moments, not saying a word.

Kristy felt like she could give him some information. He was sort of pleasant.

“I will be the new teacher for girls at the school in Charca County.”

A strange look passed over his face for an instant but then it was gone.

“So, you are a schoolteacher, eh?” Kristy nodded in reply.

“I knew that was always what I wanted to do ever since I can remember. Children captivate me and can sometimes teach us lessons that we need to learn.”

“Abslutely, they can and they do.”

“Do you have children Mr. Plett?”

“I do!’ He smiled, and for the first time Kristy noticed that he did have a handsome smile.”

“How wonderful, how many?”

“Well, that is a little complicated.”

Kristy’s heart sank, complicated? Did he not know how many he had? Did they not all have the same mom?

“Too many to count.”

Kristy’s mouth dropped open! She got her answer! He obviously ran around. She was disgusted!

“How awful! Please don’t talk to me anymore.” She glared at him and grabbed her book. Opening it up, she showed him the conversation was over. Though she could barely concentrate on the words in her book. “Too many children to count!” That blew her mind.

The first day of school had arrived. Kristy was nervous but excited too. She had pursued her dream and now it was time to act on it.

The girls red brick schoolhouse was waiting for her. She was there early, wanted to make sure all was ready. Everything was done, now all she had to do was patiently wait. Easier said than done.

The door to the schoolhouse opened and a young man walked inside. Kristy gasped and he looked amused at her shock.

“Good Morning Ma’am. I wish you a delightful first day. I remember my first day well of teaching the boys school, which is down the road. Three years ago I started. Many children have passed through my door since then. Too many to count, but all precious. He winked, giving her a big smile as he headed for the door.

The first day of school and Kristy had already learned a lesson! Don’t make assumptions for you could be so wrong. Her flushed cheeks knew that all too well.

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