Time again for Flash Friday hosted by Rebekah Postupak. This week – a 300 word (+/-25) story based on the photo prompt above. After reading by entry, click > HERE < to see the rest of the entries. Enjoy!
“Love and Learning”
Scott L Vannatter
She kept the horse at a canter, not wanting to exhaust the poor animal simply because she wanted to get back home sooner. Kristin could not quite stop smiling. He was coming home to her!
Andrew had left the cattle ranch when he was seventeen; Kristin had been fourteen. Those three years’ difference had nearly killed her; they had, certainly, driven her mildly insane, despite what Aunt Gretchen thought.
Kristin had loved, still loved, Andrew with that love only a young teenager could appreciate or understand. She could still smell the sweaty musk he had on him after a full day’s work with the animals; she could hear his voice answering Bill’s orders; she could still see the toss of his golden hair when he pulled the hat from his head to wipe his brow with his dirty shirtsleeve. Her love had grown over the, nearly, seven years he had been on her ranch.
No, Aunt Gretchen could not understand Kristin’s love for Andrew. What they had was a specialness that was unconcerned with the appreciation of others. Kristin’s crying for over two weeks at Andrew’s forced leaving was inconsolable and almost non-stop. She still, in fact, cried much more quietly in the confines of her room.
Andrew had been let go because Kristin loved him. Aunt Gretchen did not tolerate it from a boy “like him.” Problem was she was never able to put into words why she hated Andrew so. But, when Kristin slipped out to meet him one autumn evening behind the stalls and they had kissed once, Aunt Gretchen had been adamant about him leaving to spare Kristin the pain – “or worse,” she had said.
Kristin put the horse to gallop when she saw he had already arrived, the car out front. She ran in to meet him. She stopped when she stepped through the door.
“Kristin,” greeted Andrew, “say hello to my wife, Tilly.”