A New Dawn

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There was stillness in the early morning twilight hour. The only sound was the call of the lone raven, from his perch in the tree.

The lady woke up before dawn. She poured herself a cup of tea, grabbed her jacket and walked out into the cool morning air. The tea warmed her as she stood by the lake, listening to the raven’s call.

The man reached over and felt the empty space next to him. He opened his eyes and looked groggily at the clock. It was barely the crack of dawn, where was she?

His wife heard his footsteps behind her. Soon she felt his arm wrapped around her shoulders. Gently he put his hand on her belly, feeling the baby kick. She put her hand over his and they marveled togethet at the new life growing inside of her.

The old man was sitting in the boat, listening to the call of the raven. There was no rush, he had no where to be. He could simply enjoy the peace. He didn’t know how much longer he had, each day was a gift, and he was going to enjoy it. He rowed into the morning’s light.

She put her head on her husband’s shoulder and smiled. They watched the rising sun’s reflection over the water.

A new day was dawning and hope was stirring, as she felt the baby kick again. No words were said. The only sound was the raven’s call, welcoming the dawn.

The Winning Hand

Ethan wiped beads of sweat off his brow. How had he got himself into this predictament? First he was just playing a friendly game of cards and then the guy wanted to make a bet. Ethan thought he was on a winning streak so he said sure. But he had been so wrong!

He had come out to LA again for business. The last time he had been here was when Jade and him were on their honeymoon.

Missing Jade, he was eager to leave for home tomorrow, but his stomach started turning when he thought of how big a bet he had made. He had been so sure that he would win! He regretted the last drink he had, made him make a dumb move and now he was about to lose all his money!

Ethan’s brain was scrambling as he looked at the cards in his hand, wishing they would magically change!

“Are you going to lay down your cards or not, I don’t have all night, you know.” said the man with the brown scruffy beard and beady brown eyes.

“My wife Henrietta is waiting for me at home, she is going to be so happy with my winnings. Now I can get her that diamond necklace that she has been wanting. Just in time for her birthday. So hurry up young man.”

Henrietta, thought Ethan, where had he heard that name before? Suddenly it struck him why he recognized the name and a plan began to form in his mind! It was crazy but it might just work!

“How about one more bet. Double the money?” Ethan asked.

The beady eyed man leaned forward in his chair. “You want to lose more money?”

“Oh, No, I plan to win!” said Ethan. “What would you say if I told you that I could provide some singing entertainment for you from a hippo?”

The man almost fell off his chair from laughter!

“A singing hippo! How many drinks did you have? I would gladly pay you double to see a singing hippo, and I will be even more glad to take your money from you! So sure go find me a singing hippo” and the guy convulsed in laughter once more.

Ethan didn’t waste any time leaving. He stepped out into the fresh air snd quickly took off in his car. He could just go back to his hotel, the guy didn’t know where he was staying. At least he didn’t think so, but what if somehow he did. The last thing Ethan wanted was to be woken up in the early morning hours by an angry guy wanting his money.

He had to find Henrietta the hippo. Driving down the road he hoped that he had remembered correctly where Jade and he had met her before.

It didn’t take too long to arrive. He parked his car and entered the woods. Ethan walked in the woods with a knot in his stomach, he just had to find her. He walked for quite a while and he began giving up all hope of finding her.

Then be found himself at the river and there she was, playing in the water. Relief flooded through him. He would be OK!

“Henrietta!” he called, walking towards the river. “Its me Ethan, I need your help.”

There was silence as Henrietta smiled at him. Why wasn’t she talking, he thought.

“Hi Ethan! Nice to see you back.”

Ethan turned around to see Bobo the bear. He sure was glad that he knew Bobo was harmless or he would have fainted!

“Hi Bobo, how are you? I would love to chat but I am really in a hurry and need Henrietta’s help. I called out to her but she just keeps playing in the water, like she doesn’t hear me.”

“I am sure she heard you but she won’t speak to you. She has a bad case of laryngitis. She has been singing her heart out this week and her voice is now totally gone!”

Ethan groaned and covered his face with his hands. “Oh No! I am doomed! This is awful!”

“Awful? Actually all of us here in the woods have been enjoying the peace!” said Bobo.

Shaking his head, Ethan filled him in on his problem.

“Well I can’t sing but I bet I could make that guy forget all about your bet!” Bobo said with a chuckle.

“How?’ Ethan asked and then, a smile spread across his face.

“Oooh yes, I do believe you could!”

Ethan and Bobo planned it out. He would bring the guy to the woods to see Henrietta, but Bobo would make a sudden appearance! He told Bobo where to meet them and he couldn’t stop smiling. This would be good!

Jade was waiting for Ethan at the airport. She was so excited to see him and be back in his arms once again.

Later that night Jade turned to him and said. “I still can’t believe you stood up to a bear and scared him away! You could have been killed!”

Ethan wrapped his arm around Jade and said, “Remember our walk in the woods when we were on our honeymoon and that awful lady robbed us?”

“Yes, how could I forget, but why are you bringing that up?” Jade asked.

“Remember Bobo the bear”, Ethan asked with a gleam in his eye.

“Yes, he scared us so badly at first but then…” she looked at Ethan as understanding began to dawn on her.

“So my brave knight, that ferocious bear that you encountered,did its name happen to be Bobo?”

“What a smart woman you are!” he said, leaning in and kissing her soft pink lips.

Jade kissed him back, stretching her hand across the bed to turn off the light.

Rescuing Cupcake

Kendra was sitting with her Grandma at the table. They had just finished a feast of roast chicken and gravy with fried grunion. For dessert her grandma had made a red velvet cake and of course served it with her special coffee.

The feast had been prepared for the 4 unsung heroes sitting around the table with Kendra and her grandma. These guys had never been awarded any medals but to Kendra and her Grandma they were wonderful heroes.

Their hearts would always be full of gratitude for them, and now Kendra had another favor to ask of the brave men.

Cupcake, Fairlight’s unicorn, was missing! Fairlight, who had also managed to eecape from the dark fairies, was afraid that they had stolen Cupcake.

The unsung heroes listened to Kendra and they knew that they couldn’t say No to helping! They loved unicorns, especially the one guy. They were his favorite animal and even though he had been turned into a duck before by the Queen of the dark fairies, he wasn’t afraid to help.

Kendra was so happy! “Thank you so much! Fairlight was so upset when she told me. She loves that unicorn. Cupcake just has to be found!” she told the guys.

“I think this calls for another round of my Strawberry marshmallow coffee.” Grandma said, much to the delight of the guys.

The next mornimg dawned bright with a glorious sunrise in the sky. The guys were at the edge of the forest. All they had to do was cross the bridge and they would be in the land of the dark fairies. They had felt so brave, but now nerves were beginning to surface as neither one of them moved.

“How hard can it be? We just need to find Cupcake and climb on her back and fly her home to Fairlight.” said the one. The others nodded, but still didn’t move.

“The Queen is probably sleeping, so we can be in and out before she wakes up!” another one said, trying to force a brave smile upon his face.

“One problem. Unicorns are very tricky, so she could be hiding. How do we exactly catch a unicorn?”

“Well, I guess we will just have to find out. Lets go before we all feel like going back home!” said the one who had been turned into a duck before, trying to quell his nerves.

“QUACK!” said his friend, “just trying to lighten the moment!” they all laughed, well, all but one, who was rolling his eyes instead.

Saying no more they walked across the bridge, to begin their quest to find Cupcake.

CRACK! The one plank on the bridge broke and one fell into the water below. Fortunately the water wasn’t deep, so he was able to crawl out and join his friends on land. His friends tried not to laugh, as one piped up. “You were talking about how you wanted to go for a swim in the Hot Springs…”

The “drenched rat” guy looked at his friend and said, “This wasn’t exactly what I had in mind, that water was COLD!” They all continued walking but you could hear the “squeak, squeak” sound of their friend’s shoes as they walked.

The forest was still, all the fairies must be asleep, but where was Cupcake?

Then they saw her! It was Cupcake on a hill just standing there looking at them. They were stunned, could it really be this easy? She was dazzling with brightness in her iridescent wings against her snow white body.

Slowly they moved towards her, not wanting to scare her away. Finally they reached the top of the hill and were just ready to reach out and touch her when they heard “GOTCHA!”

Shocked they turned around to come face to face with the Queen of the Dark fairies! Quickly they turned around to climb onto Cupcake’s back, but she was gone! All they heard was the cackling laughter of the Queen.

“You all are pretty gullible if you thought you were going to steal Cupcake from me that easily!” mocked the Queen.

The hearts of our poor unsung heroes sank! Now what was going to happen to them?

While the Queen was mocking them a host of other fairies had tied them up.

“Wait!” said the Queen, “let the hands of one free for a moment. I need his help.”

She pulled out a pickle jar and handed it to him. “Please open this for me! This one too! Oh, I knew you guys would be useful for something. “

Grudgingly he opened the pickle jar and the peanut butter one, for what other choice did the poor hero have.

“Okay, tie him up now.” and the Queen smiled an evil grin as she ate her pickles.

She walked around them talking to herself. “Hmmm…I could cast this spell on them or should I try the other one. Oooh maybe I should try my new one, or perhaps that would be too mean”, she cackled.

“I got it!”she said looking into the eyes of our heroes, as they shook in fear. “I know exactly what I will do.”

(to be continued…)

The Unexpected Phone Call

Max was looking in his closet  for his cherry red and yellow shirt to match his tie. While looking he came across a hanger with something sealed in plastic. It had been in the back of his closet. What could it be?

He guessed it must be a suit that he didn’t wear anymore. Probably grew out of it. It seemed he gained a few pounds recently. As long as it just stayed a few pounds he wasn’t too worried. Ahh! There it was, he had found his cherry red and yellow shirt.

Grabbing it he walked out of his closet with the sealed bag still hanging there,  momentarily forgotten. He dressed for work. His secretary would groan again at his choice of outfit but red was his favorite color and he thought yellow went just fine.

That evening when he entered his house he wss ready to relax! It had been an exhausting day of showing houses, but it had paid off. He had finally sold the MayApple house.

It was a beautiful 2 story house with a wrap-around porch. A spiral staircase and lovely cherry wood floors. A lot of people were not crazy about the paint job inside but this older lady loved it when she first saw it. It was a dark shade of green with colorful flowers all over. The lady who had painted it had been a real artist.

Max breathed out a sigh of relief as he poured himself a cold drink. He had some eztra padding in his bank account now, with the sale of this house.

When opening his closet to put away his shoes he noticed the hanger again with the plastic bag. Curious he pulled it out and started unzipping the bag. Catching a glimpse of something red, the memories came back. He knew what it was!

He pulled out the Santa suit that had been stored away. Why he didn’t just get rid of it he didn’t know. When would he be Santa again, he didn’t have time for it. A heaviness startrd replacing the light feeling that had been in his heart moments ago.

Max remembered the kids that used to sit on his lap. They were so cute with the things they would ask for. He used to visit hospitals and go to nursing homes too. He loved spreading cheer!

He loved it but he got too busy. He had bought a big house and a brand new convertible. Suddenly there was the stress of needing to earn more money than he had before when he lived in his rancher.

It had been a nic house but he had dreamed of bigger and better. This house had a swimming pool and a hot tub, it was his house of dreams, though he didn’t seem to be in it too much these days. He sighed, thinking of the days when life was easier.

Max laid the Santa suit out on the chair by his bed. He just wasn’t ready to seal it up yet.

His eyes startrd misting, but just a little. He wouldn’t let himself cry, as he looked at Marta’s picture on his dresser. His drive for earning more money had turned her away. She wanted the old Max back. She had told him to call her when he found the old Max. He watched her drive away in the rain, taking half of his heart with her.

He was deep in thought when the phone rang.

“Hello”

“Ho!Ho!Ho! Hi Max! I think we need to talk.”

“Santa Clause?”

“How would you like to visit me at the NorthPole? I will send some of my reindeer and elves to pick you up tomorrow at midnight, Ok?”

Max was practically speechless. “Um, sure, that sounds great!”

“See you tomorrow! Sleep well Max. Ho! Ho! Ho!”

The phone went dead and Max still held it in his hand. What was happening? There was no way that could have really been Santa Clause, could it?

Settling In

This is a sequel to my Facing Uncertainty post. Hope you like it!

Katy had been in her safe-house for a week now and was trying to get used to this new way of life.

It was quite different from her busy life as an attorney! She was almost finished reading her 3rd novel, sbe was going to have to send Patrick or John out for more books.

One of them was always with her. It was strange never being alone! They were good at giving her privacy, but they were always in the cottage. It did make her feel safe. Right now she didn’t really want to be alone.

Pstrick had been right about the food, it was really good. Depending on how long she had to hide out she may gain a lot of weight! He brought her seafood from a Cafe. Anything she wanted she could have and they had rich, chocolaty desserts.

Putting her book down she stepped out of her cottage to look at the ocean. She couldn’t go into town but Patrick did say that she could step out of her cottage to enjoy the sea. It helped her keep her sanity. Watching the waves roll and hearing them crash against the shore.

She saw Patrick’s boat coming. He had supper with him.

He was smiling when he stepped out of the boat. “Getting a little fresh air, I see.”

“Yes, i thought I should probably do some exercises to burn off all this good food that I have been eating!”

“You are welcome to join me on my morning jog tomorrow.” Patrick said.

Katy used to jog before she got so busy. It would be good to get back into it.

“Thanks! I think I will, now lets go eat, the smell is tantilizing.”

After a supper of clam strips and shrimp with lava cake, Katy knew that she had to go jogging tomorrow.

Her alarm went off and she groggily tried to turn it off but kept hitting the wrong button. UGH! Who went jogging at 5am! She should have asked Patrick the time before agreeing to go.

She still remembered his smirk as he said Good Night last night and then added. “See you at 5am!” Her face must have shown her shock as he chuckled. He probably didn’t expect her to actually come but she would show him.

Pulling her hair up into a messy bun, she threw on her favorite sweats and went downstairs to meet him.

“Well look who made it up!” Patrick and John smiled at her as they said Good Morning.

“Are you coming jogging too?” Katy said too John. He was an older man, very nice guy. He had trained Patrick.

“Nope, I will keep an eye on the cottage and enjoy the exercise of lifting my coffee cup.” he joked, as he took a drink of coffee.

Patrick and Katy left the cottage and started jogging. Katy noticed the gun in Patrick’s pocket. She hoped he wouldn’t have to use it! There were moments when she could forget that someone actually wanted her dead, but then the harsh reality made her blood run cold.

Patrick noticed the change in her demeanor when she saw his gun.

“I promise, John and I will keep you safe, and you won’t be hiding forever. Now are you ready to jog 6 miles?”

“6 miles! Are you insane?” Katy replied.

“C’mon! Keep up slowpoke.” and Patrick took off running.

“Hey, I thought we were jogging, not running!” Katy yelled, running to catch up.

Following the Glowing Rocks

The four friends were pondering the messages that they had seen on the rocks. They all had been rock climbing and when they made it to the top of the mountain they found 7 rocks in a circle. They each had one word on them. The rocks spelled out “The Magic Tunnel is waiting for You!”

On the bottom of each rock was a map showing the way to go. They were very curious, but should they really go? They kept debating.

“Will you make up your mind!” Billy said to Quincy. “Eithet sit or stand! How can we think when you keep moving up and down?”

Quincy sat down and they began talking once more about the mysterious rocks.

“Whoa! Look!” Jack said. “The rocks are changing colors and glowing!” He quickly grabbed his camera and started snapping. All of them were mesmerized.

Now they all were in agreement. There was no doubt about it, they had to follow the rocks. Who knew what cool things they may find in the tunnel! After studying the maps for a little bit they decided they were ready to go.

They all climbed back down the mountain and started heading for the magic tunnel. They were making good progress when suddenly Jack stepped into a snare.

His heart began to beat like a bass drum.

About the same time the other guys yelled as they fell into deep holes!

Now what were they going to do? Billy laid in the deep hole thinking, what a fine kettle of fish they were in now, and he let out a long sigh.

New Beginnings

Pinterest Image

Katy looked out her window at the freshly fallen snow. It looked so pretty with the cardinals sitting on the fence. She would miss her woods. Perhaps later today she would take one more snowy walk through the woods.

She was drinking a cup of cinnamon black tea with Celine Dion’s Christmas CD playing softly on the stereo.

Most of her CD’s were packed away but she had kept out some of her favorites. She looked around her living room at all the boxes stacked up in the corner.

All her memories stashed away. Memories from long ago days. Tomorrow would begin her journey towards a new beginning.

The movers would be here at 8am sharp tomorrow to load all her possesions in the U-haul. She then would catch a flight to her new home. She started her new job at the end of the week.

Katy was excited. Finally all her hard work had paid off! She was going to be a partner in a prestigous law firm in New York City.

A country girl moving to the big city! It surely would be a big change, but she was ready.

Katy was ready to catch a Broadway show at Radio City Music Hall and take a horse drawn carriage ride through Central Park. To experience city life.

Most of all she was ready to make a difference in people’s lives. To win cases for victims of crimes.

She had always wanted to be a lawyer, but one personal incident in her life made her even more passionate! When she was in law school, a close family friend had been murdered.

He was such a friendly guy, loved animals and had made himself a nice home. He loved his cabin in the woods. Always kept the birds, squirrels, rabbits and deer fed. They would come right up to his door and wait for him. A modern day Dr. Doolittle.

There was also a pet chicken he had that he often talked too. Some may have thought that he was a little cuckoo, but he still was a very nice guy, that never should have died.

Katy finished drinking her tea and rose her cup in the air, as a toast to his memory. She wondered what her first case would be. She promised herself that she would give her first case and all the ones that followed, her absolute best and nothing less!

Hope in a Bottle

Long, long ago there was a young woman who lived by the sea. In a quaint chalet she lived by herself, The waves kept her company. Sometimes they would roar quite loud, but other times they were gentle when kissing the shore.

She never grew tired of walking along the shore and watching the dazzling display of colors as the sun would set over the sea.

In the morning the sea would glisten like sapphires when the rising sun shined down upon it.

She had learned to enjoy her solitary life. Each day was usually the same but she liked it that way. She kept a journal, recording all her thoughts and writing down memories of the life she had left behind. Sometimes the memories would tug at her heart, but for the most part she had learned to be content. Then one day, what the tide brougbt in changed all that!

She was taking her usual evening stroll by the sea when something washed up on the shore, lying right at her feet.

It was a bottle witb a message inside. She didn’t know what to think. She sat down, sinking into the sand, and opened the bottle.

Pulling out the message she began to read.”Dear Annalise, I have no idea if you will ever receive this but I want you to know its safe to come home now., she died. Come home sweet Anna, to where you belong.” Your loving Aunt.

Annalise re-read the short note 3x, letting it sink in. She could go home. No more fear needed, it was safe to return home. She pondered the news as she gazed out on the turquoise blue sea.

What Was That Sound?

My photo from Crystal Cave

Toby’s heart sank as he passed by the big melting ice cream cone stalagmite again.  He had been full of excitement to explore this cave but was now getting anxious to get back out to the sunlight.

Turning around, he walked away from the ice cream cone. He hadn’t thought he would get lost in this cave. There hadn’t been that many turns, but  apparently he kept taking the wrong one.

He walked away feeling confident seeing a turn up ahead that he thought he would try. Only to feel hopeless again, as he ran into a wall.

Slumping down against the damp wall he took another drink from his thermos. Then he pulled out a cranberry almond granola bar, for he was getting hungry.

What was that sound? Chills ran through him. It sounded like someone was in pain!

Was there someone or something else in this cave? The sound didn’t seem to be real close but should he follow it? Did someone need help or…? He swallowed his fear as he walked towards the sound.

The wailing got louder. His mind was thinking of all kinds of possibilities. He was trying to prepare himself for whatever he may find. It sounded like shrieking now, causing his heart to jump.

Tnere was light! He saw the opening of the cave! The sound was a lot louder, making him cringe, but at least he was finally getting out of the cave.

Stepping out into the sunlight felt great, but oooh that sound! Where was it coming from? Then he saw the source of the sound but couldn’t believe his eyes! He had never seen a long necked hippo before and never heard sounds like that coming from a hippo!

Henrietta stopped as she saw Toby walking towards her. “Hi!” she called out to him. “Hi!” he replied and then shook his head, had he really just talked to a Hippo?

“I was just warming up my vocal chords, going through the scales. Getting ready to sing my new song.”  she said. “Oh.” was all he could think of to say. A singing hippo was not one of the possibilities that had gone through his mind when wondering about the source of the wailing sound.

“I see you came out of Bobo’s cave, did you see him?” Henrietta asked, changing the subject since he hadn’t seemed to interested in her singing.

“Who is Bobo?” asked Toby.

“My friend, the bear!”

“A…a…bear lives in that cave??” stammered Toby.

“Yes.” replied Henrietta. Noticing his pale complexion, she quickly assured Toby that Bobo was friendly.

When Toby had planned a weekend getaway trip to Vegas, he had never planned on meeting a talking, long necked hippo! What other strange animals did Vegas have?

Henrietta kept chatting away, she was quite the friendly hippo. He continued listening to her and decided that this was one of those times when that quote he heard alot was true! “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas!” For if he ever was to speak about this to his friends they would definitely be wondering about his sanity!

.

Without a Clue

What happened and where was she? Sarah was feeling like her grandmother, ferhoodled. Very confused!  One minute she was walking home and the next …. she was on 5th Avenue in NYC, holding onto a bag of chicken legs and donuts.

The honking of horns was going to give her a headache. “Excuse me Miss.” said one man as he eushed past her. She had stepped out of his way only to step into someone else’s path.

Whoa! She got shoved out of the way, almost losing her balance. She did manage to lose her bag of chicken legs. They were scattered all over the road now!

“Katie! Kate!” Quick come, lunch break is over. We have to be back in court. The jury has reached a verdict.

Sarah was studying the cowbell in her hand, which she had forgotten about. Suddenly she felt her arm being grabbed. “Didn’t you hear me, you look like you are daydreaming Kate.

“But wait, I am not Kate.” Sarah said as she felt herself being pulled along.

The other lady looked at her and laughed.  “You were just on lunch break, Kate, it wasn’t Happy Hour! Were you drinking?”

Sarah didn’t know what to say. She let herself be pulled along as the other lady prattled on about the court case. A case that she had no clue about what was going on! Right now she had no clue about anything that was going on.

“Do you think the jury will rule in  the plaintiff’s favor? Do you really think that Miss. Scarlet murdered the Professor?

Soon they were in front of the courthouse and Sarah found herself in line to go through security. BUZZ! Sarah had set off the alarm! Why had…then she remembered the cowbell in her pocket.

“Miss, we need you to empty your pockets and go through again please.” Sarah felt her face grow hot as she pulled her cowbell out. The security officer gave her a curious stare.

Tbe lady who had mistaken her for Kate, looked at the Security officer and said “It is her good luck charm.” The man picked it up,  handing it back to Sarah and said, “Good luck Miss!” Sarah mumbled a Thank You, still feeling embarrassed.

“Kate, I have to ask, what are you doing with a cowbell?”

“Its my good luck charm.” she said, and she rang it 3x! Pink and purple smoke filled the hallway and when it cleared Sarah breathed a sigh of relief, she was back in town!

She was so glad to be back, but her mind was swirling. What had happened? She couldn’t stop looking at the cowbell while walking back to the Inn.

Opening the door she called out, “Miss. Lisette, I am so sorry I took so long! You will never believe what happened!”

Lisette came around the corner. “So glad you are back, I was beginning to wonder how many games you were playing at the Fluffer Nutter Shop!”

“Games? What? Oh yeah! Well actually, I didn’t play any games. I….”

Lisette couldn’t believe her eyes! “Where did you find that cowbell?”

“In the grass and let me tell you, this is one very magical cowbell!”

“I know!” said Lisette, “How do you think I ended up here.”

Now Sarah’s eyes were wide! “What! This cowbell brought you here?”

“Let me make us some Creme Brulee coffee, this is going to be a long story.” Lisette replied, while walking into the kitchen, leaving Sarah staring after her in wonder.