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This work has reached the exceptional level
Charlie searches for a new home.
Dobyns Chronicals
Charlie Looks at Property by Shirley McLain
 Category:  Family Fiction
  Posted: September 19, 2011      Views: 823
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I changed my name from Texasgal to Okiegal since I'm no longer living in Texas.

Published Works:

"The Tower", a YA mystery published through xlibris and is available on Amazon.

"Verses For My King," Spir - more...

She is a top ranked author at the #86 position.

She is an accomplished novelist and is currently at the #23 spot on the rankings.

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Charlie and Mila lose their farm where they have raised their children to taxes. Charlie has to find them a new place to live.

I lucked out and found Lovely at home.  Since we knew each other from the stockyards, I knew he was the kind of man who didn’t want his time wasted. “Lovely, I was told you have a place for sale."

“Yeah, I got 360 acres.  Are you interested in buying the place?  It does have a three bedroom house with it.”

“Where is it?” I asked.

“It’s north of Cabiness.  You get there from east of Stuart.  It’s a ways back there, but it’s good cattle land.  You want to see it?”

“Sure do, when would be a good time?”

“Charlie, now is as good of time as any.  We’ll take my wagon.”

“Ok, let’s go.”

Lovely took off heading to Stuart.  About two miles west of town, we turned on the road and drove for at least thirty minutes.  He wasn’t kidding when he said it was  a ways back there.  I enjoyed the ride, looking at the open land with the cattle eating and milling around.

We made it to the house and it wasn’t bad looking.  I’ve lived in much worse.  It had a covered front porch across the front of it.  We walked into the parlor and it was a nice size with a big fireplace.  There was a bedroom off the living room, and two off the kitchen.   The one off the parlor was the biggest.  The kitchen was good size with a good size wood stove. The water pump was conviently located on the screened in backporch.

“Lovely, how much water does this well put out?”

“It’s not a well, it’s a cistern.  It catches the water running off the house.  The people who've lived here never had a problem having enough water. Come on and I’ll show you the barn.  It’s a good size barn and lot.  I had a catch pen with shoot built not too long ago.”

“How many ponds does the place have?”

“Well, let me count them up.  There are six, but half of them go dry in the summer if we don’t get rain.  I’ve not had any problems keeping my cows watered.  So whatcha think about the place, Charlie?”

“It looks pretty good.  How much are you wantin’ for it?”

“I want $3.00 an acre, which comes out to $1080.00 for the house and land. Do you want it?”

“I’m interested, but I want Mila to see it first.  Is it all right if I bring her up tomorrow?  I'll give you my answer by the end of the week.”

"Well, you know it could sell before the end of the week.”

“Yeah I know Lovely,but I won’t buy it without Mila seeing it.  I’ll get back to you as soon as I can, but for shore by the week-end.”

 We got back in his wagon and headed back to his place.  He didn’t talk to me the entire ride since I didn’t make an offer on the place right then and there. I had plenty of time to think as we bounced around on that bumpy road.  I kept wonderin’ what Mila would think of the place. 

We finally made it back to Lovely’s place and I said my goodbyes. “Lovely you will be hearing from me real soon.”

 I mounted my horse, and headed towards home. I knew it would be suppertime by the time I got back to the house. Sure enough, Mila was standin’ at the stove cookin’.

“Supper will be ready in about ten minutes.  Go ahead and get washed up while I put food on the table,” Mila said.

I went to the sink, pumped up a pan of water, grabbed a bar of soap, and began washing.  I tried to talk to Mila while I was washin’, but she was acting as if she didn’t hear me.

“Mila, I’m trying to talk to you.  Won’t you at least act as if you hear me?  Aren’t you the least bit interested in what I found out today?”

“I can’t say as I am, Charlie.”  Mila never turned from the stove.  Just kept stirrin’ her gravy.

“Dang it woman, it’s not my fault we lost this place.  Stop blaming me for what’s happened.  We are goin’ to be fine, but you have to accept that we are leavin’ here.”

When Mila turned from the stove with the gravy bowl in her hand, there were tears streaming out of her eyes.  When she sat it on the table, I took hold of her hand and patted it.

“Mila, honey, don’t cry.  I’m sorry I raised my voice.  Like I said before, when God closes one door he opens another.”

We ate our supper in silence that evenin’.  I didn’t try to talk to her anymore; I ate and left her to her thoughts.  I figured by in the morning she’d work through her troubled mind.

I got up at 5:00 AM, dressed and walked into the kitchen. Mila was already in the kitchen with coffee made and biscuits in the oven.  I knew it was going to be a better day for both of us when she smiled and said good mornin’. I told her good mornin’ and grabbed up a lantern and headed out to feed the stock.

Breakfast of biscuits, gravy, sausage and eggs was waitin’ on me when I got back in from feeding.  I washed up and set down at the table.  Mila started the conversation before I got one bite of food in my mouth.  
“Charlie, I’m sorry about how I acted yesterday.  I felt like my world was comin’ to an end.  I did a lot of prayin’ and I’m fine today.  Do you forgive me?”

“Ain’t nothin’ to forgive.  I knew what was going on, and you would work through it.  Let’s eat and then we’ll talk.”

After breakfast, Mila and me continued to sit at the table with our coffee.  Usually we got up and began our day’s chores.  I patted Mila’s hand and said, “Ok gal, let’s talk about what I found yesterday.  Are you ready to listen to me?”

“Yeah, I’m ready to listen.”

“Lovely took me to his land that’s north of Cabiness.  It’s 360 acres with a three bedroom house that looks pretty good.  I’m going to offer him $1000.00 cash if you like the house.  I’d like for you to go with me today to look at it.”

“All right, Charlie, I’ll go with you.  Let me get the chickens fed and change clothes and we’ll go see the place.”

We got our morning chores done and headed out to the place.  It was a nice spring morning and Mila enjoyed the ride.  We stopped at Arpelar store, got us a cool drink of water, and continued on to Stuart.
We met a couple of people on horseback.  We didn’t stop and chat, just waved and kept going.  When we turned off the main road and headed north, Mila was checking the countryside out.  Her neck looked like it was on a swivel.

“Are you lookin’ for something in particular, Mila?”

“No, just lookin’.  I want to know what’s around.  How far is it to this place?”

“We have about four miles to go.  What do you think of the country around here?  I don’t think it’s much different than where we’re at," I told her.

“Nope, it’s not much different other than being back in the sticks, further away from our family and friends.  I’ll keep an open mind about the place for you.”

“You’re a good woman, Mila and we’ll end up where we’re supposed to.”


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