The Lancer Fanfiction Archive

subglobal1 link | subglobal1 link | subglobal1 link | subglobal1 link | subglobal1 link | subglobal1 link | subglobal1 link
subglobal2 link | subglobal2 link | subglobal2 link | subglobal2 link | subglobal2 link | subglobal2 link | subglobal2 link
subglobal3 link | subglobal3 link | subglobal3 link | subglobal3 link | subglobal3 link | subglobal3 link | subglobal3 link
subglobal4 link | subglobal4 link | subglobal4 link | subglobal4 link | subglobal4 link | subglobal4 link | subglobal4 link
subglobal5 link | subglobal5 link | subglobal5 link | subglobal5 link | subglobal5 link | subglobal5 link | subglobal5 link
subglobal6 link | subglobal6 link | subglobal6 link | subglobal6 link | subglobal6 link | subglobal6 link | subglobal6 link
subglobal7 link | subglobal7 link | subglobal7 link | subglobal7 link | subglobal7 link | subglobal7 link | subglobal7 link
subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link

Darla M. Poulos

 

 

Not Enough

 A get well card/story for Melanie Maben.

johnny

 

Johnny hurried out of the hacienda’s kitchen door with a whole chocolate cake in one hand and a bundle of freshly picked wild flowers in the other. Leaning into the back of the buckboard, he carefully set both items into a small wooden crate as his father walked past the wagon.

Grinning, Murdoch asked, “Courting?” Involuntarily, he took note of the various work tools surrounding the box. Coming to a halt and crossing his arms, he awaited his son’s explanation.

“Ah, no,” calmly stated Johnny with a tinge of red on his cheeks. “I’m, ah, just gonna take this stuff over to Melanie’s place.”

Murdoch raised an eyebrow. “As in, the Maben’s, our neighbors?”

“Yeah.” Johnny anxiously rubbed his hands on the seat of his pants and finished with, “Ya did know she’s feeling poorly?”

Briefly closing his eyes, Murdoch solemnly confirmed, “Yes, I heard she has Cancer.” He paused and shook his head. “How do you think she’s coping with it?”

“Well, that’s what I want to find out,” answered Johnny, his eyes flashing with sadness. “She’s gotta need cheering up.”

“And at the same time you’re going to see if she needs any help,” added Murdoch, nodding at the implements in the buckboard.

“Exactly.” Johnny bowed his head. “Only…only I don’t know exactly what to say.” He looked up at his father silently asking for advice. “It’s awkward ya know?” His normally busy hands went to the seat of his pants again where he wiped the dampness off his skin. “I mean…how do ya talk about her being sick without…talkin’ about it?” he softly asked.

Unconsciously seeking comfort, Johnny moved his arms from his backside to wrap around his own ribs. “I want her to know she’s cared about, that she’s not alone, that she has friends who are with her in spirit even if they can’t be there in person…and above all, to give her strength and hope.” He paused and with his right hand squared his hat to hide the moistness in his eyes, then continued, “And…and that it’s okay to be scared. Lord knows I’ve been scared practically outta my wits lots of times, but this is different. This is an illness we’re talkin’ about…she’s ailing.”

Murdoch put his arm around Johnny’s shoulders and they both leaned against the tailgate of the small wagon. Rubbing his chin with the fingers of his left hand, he thought out loud, “Hmm.” Desperately, he wracked his mind for an answer to his son’s heartfelt dilemma.

“You could tell her about the Oak Tree.”

“The oak tree?” repeated Johnny, puzzled.

“Yes,” said his father. “It’s a poem to offer encouragement.”

“Do ya think that’ll be enough?” asked Johnny, not seeing himself talking about some old poem. “I really want her to know that I care.”

Murdoch gave him an inspiring grin. “Well with the flowers and cake and the willingness to help do the chores around the farm, I think she’ll get the general idea. After all, actions do speak louder than words.”

“Yeah, but…”

“And it’s the thought that counts.” Murdoch squeezed Johnny’s shoulder. “If you think that’s still not enough sit her down on the porch swing. Spend some quality time with her. Talk with her. Listen to her. Your time might make all the difference in the world to her.”

With a sigh Johnny quickly hashed over all the advice his father had given him. He even wondered if these were ideas Murdoch had wished he’d done with Maria, Johnny’s own mother, before she had left him.  

“Good advice, Murdoch,” smiled Johnny as he moved to climb onto the bench of the buckboard. Once seated he picked up the reins, then frowned.

Murdoch, catching the look, asked, “What’s wrong?”

A slight blush swept over Johnny’s features. “Ah, Murdoch, just in case…tell me...”

He stopped and stared at his father’s boots.

“Tell you what?” A confused Murdoch asked.

“About…the Oak Tree…”

“Oh…just in case the cat gets your tongue?”

Sheepishly, Johnny replied, “Yeah.”

A hearty chuckle followed. “Can’t have that now can we?”

With a little more embarrassing glow to his face, Johnny shook his head no.

Murdoch, with pleasure, recited the poem in ardent unrestraint.

 

Image result for the old oak tree poem

 

Many hours later on his way home, Johnny offered up a prayer for this courageous woman. She was warm and friendly with a bright spirit that glowed from within. She knows not what the future holds for her in this world. But in her heart, she has God’s love and believes that her life is in his hands. She can live with that.   

 

 

~end~
20 February 2020

Want to comment? Email Darla