Rain and Storms

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Chapter 3

Range woke at 8:00 am he was shocked that he hadn’t woke up through the night. He figured it was all the crying he was doing. He got up and made himself some eggs and toast then showered for church.
. He dressed the same as he had for years, jeans western shirt, cowboy boots and cowboy hat. Before he left his room he had spayed on cologne as he had for as long as he could remember.
Range was glad he had parked in the garage due to the rain that was falling.

Scarlet knew she must stick to the story and plan for this to all work. She and Lucas had started walking just a bit before 9:00 so the would be up the road a bit before Range came by.

Range seen a woman and child walking in the rain. The umbrella they carried did nothing to keep them dry. He stopped, rolled his window down,” you need a ride?” He asked.
“Please?” Scarlet replied.
“ Where you headed? Range asked.
“ Church. We ran into some car issues and wanted to be at church so we started walking. The rain just now picked up.” Scarlet explained. She helped Lucas into the truck and climbed in.
“ Headed there myself.” Range replied.
Awkward silence fell so Scarlet tried to make small talk.
“ Do you know anyone who trains folks to ride horses?” Scarlet asked.
“ Not anymore. My wife used to. “ Range stopped at his memory of Caroline’s side job.
“ I’m Scarlet, this is Lucas. “She introduced herself.
“ I’m Range Hollister.” He replied.
The rest of the ride was silent. Both Range and Scarlet were thankful. Range didn’t want to know much and Scarlet didn’t want to elaborate.

Service was great and the preacher was talking about how God would take your affliction and turn it around. “He will turn your pain into gain, your problems to abilities and your mourning to dancing.Let’s all stand and pray that your current situation will be tomorrow’s testimony. “As the preacher Prayed Range stole a peek at Scarlet she had tears running down her face and he wondered what caused her tears. He quickly bowed his head again and finished ending prayer.
“Please join us for an afternoon meal. Everyone please stay and fellowship. “ the preacher invited.

Range didn’t want to stay but a home cooked meal sounded better than a sandwich so he stayed.

Scarlet knew she needed to stick to her plan but feeding a home cooked meal to Lucas was too good to be true.

The line was already long but Scarlet and Lucas got in line. The buffet was huge and Scarlet longed for a home to cook again. She took fried chicken and mash potatoes, corn and green beans, she had salad and dessert. She chose Mac and cheese and chicken and mash potatoes and spaghetti for Lucas. The sat at the table that was most empty and did her best not to devour it all at once. Scarlet hadn’t really paid much attention to her body but right now feeling like all eyes were on her she notice how skinny she had become. She always fed Lucas first. She hadn’t been at the table long when Range sat across from her. She slowed down on her food but wasted nothing. She wished she had brought her backpack she would have taken supper with her as well. Range barley spoke but finally asked,” Do you and Lucas need a ride back? The rain isn’t slowing any?”
“ That would be kind of you.” Scarlet said. Without thinking that where was he going to drop her off at the middle of the road? She may have bit more than she could chew for sure now. She knew she better confess now for sure. Except she couldn’t. She was too afraid. She quickly thought “tell the pastor he may know what to do. “ she told Range,” I need to talk to pastor Joel real quick I’ll be right back. Lucas you eat your food son.” She disposed of her trash and found the pastor. She sat with him and his wife and explained how she had been in Range’s barn and she had no where to go. With that Pastor Joel told her that he would talk to Range.

He got up and went to set with Range. “Range Can I talk to you?”
“ Sure pastor. What’s on you mind?” Range asked.
“How would you feel about helping some folks who are down on their luck? Pastor Joel asked.
“ What you needing?” Range asked.
“ I have a small family in need of A job and place to stay. I was wondering if you need a house keeper/ cook in exchange for that old ranch apartment you have.” Pastor said.
“ How long would they need?” Range asked.
“ Well, not sure. She would exchange help for place to stay. However, a paying job would help to get them on their feet and allow money to buy a car and rent something. “ Pastor reasoned.
“ Well, if I allowed a place to stay with some meals and cleaning is there a job in town that would allow some monetary support?” Range asked.
“Possibly, I seen a help sign at the garden market. Maybe that will help, but with a young child not sure if that would be a problem. “ Pastor explained. “The child may be able to go with her.”
Range already knew who they were talking about but said nothing. He wasn’t sure what to do with this family, he needed to think.
“ I’ll tell you what. I’ll put them up for the week and let’s come up with something.” Range said.
“ Thank you Range. You’re a good man.” Pastor Joel said. “ Don’t be surprised by any secrets you may discover and remember some people do anything just to survive. “
Range wasn’t exactly sure what he meant but knew Scarlet and Lucas would be a presence at his farm now.

He sat at the table until Scarlet and Lucas made their way back to him with Joel in tail.

“Scarlet, Lucas, this is Mr. Hollister he will be helping you out for the next week. He has an apartment he is willing to let you stay in for a while. “ Pastor went through the formalities for fear of awkwardness. However it may have made it worse.
“ Thank you Sir.” Scarlet reach out her hand to shake Range’s.
“Yes ma’am.” He shook her hand. Range felt awkward touching her hand he had only ever really touched Caroline’s. He pulled it back and he tried to wipe the feeling onto his jeans.

Scarlet noticed Range didn’t like their touch. She knew he was grieving. Maybe she had a plan to help him.

Range looked her way,” Are you ready to go?”
Scarlet, “yes let me get Lucas.”

Scarlet got Lucas and thanked Pastor Joel.

She and Range left Rain pelted them as they got into his truck.

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