10 Pages in 10 Days – Waltz in the Wilderness – Day 9

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Chapter 1 – page 11

Eli stepped forward, ready to plant a sockdollager on the ninny’s smeller, but Pa caught her shoulders.

“Cecilia.” Uncle Henry’s face had grown redder with the woman’s every word.

She raised her free hand to silence him. “Don’t worry, darling. I’m sure they understand and there are plenty of positions with lower standards to which The Society can refer them.”

Uncle Henry needed to bat Cecilia’s hand away as Pa would have Ma’s. Instead, he sucked in a deep breath, clamped his lips together, and squeezed his eyes shut.

Cecelia opened the door and poked her head outside, checking both directions before swinging it wide. “Now go, please, before someone sees you.”

Uncle Henry’s eyes flew open. “Cecilia!”

Cecilia jumped. She stared at him with wide eyes and a gaping, thankfully silent, mouth.

Eli pressed her lips against a cheer.

Uncle Henry spoke through his teeth. “Shut the door.” He waited for the woman to comply. “Cecilia, this is my brother, Jim, and his daughter, Eliza.”

Cecilia gasped. “Your…”

Eli sneered as the color drained from the ninny’s cheeks.

Uncle Henry ran a hand down his face. “Jim, Eliza, this is my usually charming wife, Cecilia. I do hope you’ll stay for supper and allow us the opportunity to make amends for this…misunderstanding.”

Pa kept hold of Eli’s shoulder as he accepted his brother’s proffered hand. “Of course.”

Eli forced her pinched lips to curl upward. Dinner, fine. She’d never turn down free food. But as soon as she could, she’d convince Pa to escape this snooty home. And she just might shove haughty Cecilia into the mud on her way out.


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