Unexpected Love

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The Turning Point

She saved my life, Sterling thought to himself as he held her hand asking her to stay.

Sarah sat back down. "Do you need something? Is your leg in pain? Doc Turner said you can have some whiskey, do you want me to get you some?" She spoke fast and Sterling could tell she was nervous and upset.

Sterling squeezed her hand. "Sarah. Thank you."

Sarah's eyes filled with tears. "Feel free to not hurt yourself and get attacked by coyotes again." She laughed, wiping away a tear that had come loose.

Sterling raised his hand to her face, cupping her cheek in his palm. "You were so brave. A wild woman with that stick." Sterling teased, making Sarah laugh.

"I was terrified."

He wiped the tears from her cheeks. "But you were strong and got me home. Seriously Sarah, thank you."

Sarah smiled and then straightened herself. "Alright, I'm going to go get your father now. Do you want anything?"

I want to kiss you woman, he thought to himself. "No, I'm fine."

Sarah smiled and walked out of the room.

Something had changed in Sterling. The fragile, irritating woman he had fought so hard to keep from liking had risked herself for him. Suddenly, he was happy she was there and that she was his.

A tap on the door interrupted his thoughts. "Come in."

Sarah walked in and gave him a warm smile, followed by his father.

Brick let out a sigh of relief. "Sterling, do you realize what you put us all through? Especially this girl? She's a gem." he smiled at her and gave her a squeeze.

"Sorry Pop." Sterling replied. "And I know, she is a gem."

Sarah blushed and it stirred his heart. After retelling the story to his father, Brick and Sarah left the room so he could get some rest. But he couldn't rest. All he could think about was Sarah. She had been so fierce in protecting him. He chuckled as he thought of her yelling at those coyotes and scaring them off. "A raging wild woman,” he mused.

Sterling’s led hurt badly. He attempted to get some sleep but the pain was keeping his mind from resting. He was sweating from the pain.

He heard the door open and Sarah peeked in before walking around the room quietly, putting a few things away. “Sarah,” he moaned.

He saw her snap her head up and walk toward him before gasping. “Sterling! You’re sweating! What’s wrong?”

“It’s my darn leg,” he muttered.

Sarah rushed over to her boudoir and popped open a bottle of whiskey. She poured it into the glass and crossed the room to him. “Here, drink.” She said, sitting down on the bed next to him, raising his head with her hand.

She held the glass to his lips and gently poured the liquid into his mouth. “Better?” She set the glass down and walked over to the wash basin and wrung out a towel.

Sterling nodded his head. “Mhm.” He picked up the glass and took another gulp. She brought the towel over and set it on his forehead. “You should have called for me or your father.” She reprimanded him, a small scowl on her face.

“Y’all have work to do. I figured I could just get to sleep.”

Sarah laughed, “And how did that work out for you?”

He enjoyed her teasing and seeing that little bit of fire in her.

Sarah smiled and turned to walk away. Sterling reached out and took her hand. “Stay here with me. I’ll rest better knowing you’re here.”

Sarah sat down in the chair next to the bed. Sterling never let go of her hand and he fell asleep feeling her warmth near him. He had stirred a few times and Sarah would wipe his head with a cold towel which calmed him. Sterling woke to find Sarah gone. His eyes searched the room and he was a little disappointed that she hadn’t stayed with him like he asked.

The door opened and his eyes shot up to see Sarah carrying a tray. “Oh, good you’re awake. I just went down to find something for you to eat. Martha made some wonderful chicken soup for you.” Sarah smiled warmly as she walked over to him. Sterling sat himself up and smiled lightly. “Thank you.” She handed him the tray and walked across the room to make herself busy while he ate.

“What are you going to do today?” Sterling asked, hoping Sarah would say she was going to stay with him

“Well, Brick plowed the back garden for me, so Martha and I are going to head out and plant some seeds. Hopefully we’ll have some homegrown vegetables soon!”

Sterling nodded his head, “that would be nice, it’s been a while since we had that.” His thoughts drifted to his mother, but his thoughts were interrupted.

"You miss her, don't you."

Sterling looked up at Sarah. "I do. She was taken sooner than she should have been. My father has a harder time though."

"I can see that. He loved her very much." Sarah said with a smile.

"He did. But you being here helps, I think you remind him of her. I know I'm glad you're here." He gave her a charming smile.

"Ha!" Sarah laughed at him, "You're only saying that because I saved your life. You'll be back to your old ways once you're better." She smirked and then took his tray and left the room.

Well dang, he thought to himself. "Did I already mess this up?" he mumbled to himself.

As he thought, he came upon the decision that if he continued to be kind and give her attention that she would accept that he wasn't going to change back. Something clicked on their ride that day. He had been fighting getting to know this strong, fierce, sassy, beautiful woman. She was bright and joyful and he was surprised when she didn't shy away from hard work.

"Idiot..." he muttered.

Sarah didn't come back for the rest of the day which he was a little disappointed about.

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