Quietly Blessed & Loved Press
Kansas To Nevada & Preferring The Other Cowboy Brother
& Her Cowboy in California
By The Wagon Train: A Story of Survival & Faith
At Last In California
From Kansas To
Nevada & Preferring The Other Cowboy Brother
From Kansas To Nevada & Preferring The Other Cowboy Brother - A
woman leaves a small town in Kansas after corresponding with a man in
Nevada, then travels to meet her new intended. The man she thought
she knew by his letters turns out to be very different, rude,
inconsiderate and crass. She is introduced to her fiancé’s
brother and finds him a far better person than the man she is
supposed to marry. She starts to fall in love with the brother and
believes that he feels the same way about her, but she’s in a
quandary as she has no idea how her fiancé will act.
stared out of the window of the one room cabin she shared with her
grandparents. She was sixteen years old and had lived with her
grandparents for six years since her parents had passed away.
Sometimes, she had a hard time remembering anything else than this
small cabin. Her grandparents were wonderful people but Randi knew
they were getting really old and had a hard time taking care of
themselves, much less her. She sighed as she thought of her future.
the year of 1855 in a small Kansas town, there were not many choices
when it came to marriage and moving out. You kind of had to pick
whoever was available. This is not how Randi had visualized her life.
Her dreams were big and she wanted to marry for love but she knew she
was running out of time.
before, Randi’s Grandpa Mac had come to her and given her an idea
to think about. That was why on this cold rainy day, Randi, was in
dreamland, staring out of the one windowed cabin. Mail order brides
were good for young ladies who had no other choice and no good
suitors to marry.
available men lived in the nearby town and they were both in their
forties. That seemed a little old to Randi and they already had
children from previous wives. Now,
Randi wanted kids someday but raising kids at the moment scared her.
Randi wasn’t mad at her Paw Mac for the idea, she just never
realized that the time had gotten so close for her. Now that she
really thought about it, she should have seen it coming.
Randi moved into the
kitchen quietly so as not to wake up her grandparents. The kitchen
was just a small spot on the wall with a stove. Randi poured herself
a cold cup of black coffee and tried to take a drink. The coffee was
nasty and needed some sugar but that wasn’t something her
grandparents often had.
the coffee out and lay down on the small bed that her grandparents
had made for her. The blanket was soft and her mom had made it before
she passed away. Randi loved the blanket and took great care of it.
She had very few things but she never complained. She was just glad
to have a happy home.
people could call Randi a poor person but she never looked at it that
way. At least she wasn’t living in an orphanage where she knew the
poor kids had it really bad.
curled up on her bed and decided that Paw Mac was right. She had to
make a decision soon. She didn’t want to wait until her
grandparents were sick and she didn’t want to make them keep
working harder to take care of her. She decided that tomorrow she
would write a letter to the mail order publisher and see what she
could do about finding a possible husband.
asleep and dreamed about a tall, handsome cowboy who came from Kansas
and whisked her away to a wonderful home. She lived in a nice house
with a real kitchen and pretty clothes. Randi woke up the next day to
the sound of chickens outside and she knew that she had been
climbed out of bed and saw that her grandparents were outside having
their coffee. She threw on her shawl and went outside to tell them
what she had decided to do. Her sweet grandparents were smiling and
enjoying their coffee when Randi sat down in the old rocking chair
next to them. Randi
smiled and picked up Paw Mac’s coffee and took a drink.
and Maw I’ve
made a hard decision and I don’t want ya’ll to scold me on it,
ok,” Randi asked with a sigh.
and Maw looked at each other, than at their beautiful granddaughter
who looked like she was going to cry.
want to find a husband through
the mail order bride service,” Randi told them without any more
love Franklin and I know you love me, but it’s time for me to move
Randi looked at her
grandparents and wondered what they would say.
stood up and hugged the young girl.
love you Randi. We just want to see you married and happy before we
get too old.”
Her grandpa hugged
her and agreed.
went back into the house and wrote her letter for the publisher then
hitched the horse to ride into the town of Franklin and mail it off.
Randi loved riding horses and she prayed wherever she landed that she
was able to ride horses and enjoy being outside. She hoped she didn’t
live with a city man that wanted her to stay inside all day and clean
her letter and stopped by the store to pick up some flour on the way
home. When she went in the general store she saw one of the men that
needed a wife and he had his three kids with him. He wasn’t a bad
looking man but his three kids were young and Randi knew nothing
about taking care of kids. She could just barely take care of
grabbed her flour and paid for it then headed out the door.
hurried home so that she could get her chores done before it started
getting too late. She knew that grandma wasn’t feeling well and
she didn’t want her to have to do all of the chores by herself.
Randi started supper and decided they would have dumplings for
After she finished
dinner she washed up the dishes and made some fresh coffee for her
grandparents. Randi knew that things would be easier on them when
they didn’t feel like they had to take care of her.
gathered all of the things she would need when she left for her big
adventure, as she decided to call it. That was the only way she could
accept the decision she had made. She packed them in her cedar trunk
that belonged to her parents and waited patiently for the letter to
didn’t take but a couple of weeks before
Randi got a response from the publishers. They had sent her a list of
possible men that she could choose from. Randi went through the
different pages of men and she picked out the best possible suitor
that she could think of. He was a cowboy from Rochester, Kansas, and
he had no kids. The man was in his late twenties with sandy blonde
hair and blue eyes.
sounded good to Randi since her hair was blonde and she had blue eyes
was only five foot three and the man was six foot, but she felt like
she would still be ok with that. Randi wrote to him immediately and
waited for a response. It took a little longer than she expected but
three weeks later a letter arrived for her at the post office. Randi
was surprised at the response from the gentlemen who wrote her. He
addressed her as ma’am and his name was Will.
talked about his life mostly as a cowboy and his handwriting was
laughed at this because her dad never could write very well either.
wrote the man back and told her about living with her grandparents
since her parents had died and how she needed to move on with her
and as a wife. She hoped that Will liked her and she looked forward
to meeting him.
Will and Randi wrote
a couple of times over the next couple of months and she decided it
was time to go see him. She could prolong this all she wanted but she
knew she would just have to do it.
lived on a small farm with his brother,
Kale. Kale’s wife had died a year ago and he had moved in with Will
so that he didn’t go crazy. The brothers seemed to get along well
so Randi was ok with this.
Randi told her
grandparents that the time had come and she was moving to Rochester
to meet Will and to see his ranch.
in Kansas so I won’t be far,” she told them.
grandparents packed her some food and kissed her cheek goodbye as
they put her on the stagecoach that would take her to Rochester to
meet Will. They knew they might never see her again but she was a
smart girl and she knew how to take care of herself.
cried a little as she waved goodbye but she knew that this was the
best thing for everyone.
The ride to
Rochester seemed like it took forever. They had to stop a couple of
times and let different passengers on and off. Randi met a couple of
really nice people along the way that were excited by her courage to
meet a strange man and make a life. They understood what she was
doing and gave her some great advice. Randi felt like she had made
some friends even though she wouldn’t see them again.
finally arrived in the town of Rochester she got off the stagecoach
and stretched her legs. There were a couple people standing around
but none of them looked like Will had described. Randi sat down on
the bench and waited.
As people started
clearing out one man still stood there looking nervous.
is your name Randi Sims,”
the young man asked her.
couldn’t have been more than about twenty five and he had dark
brown hair and green eyes. He was handsome,
but he looked very sad.
I am,” Randi replied to the quiet young gentlemen in front of her.
“Are you Will?”
man shook his head no and replied, “My name is Kale. Will couldn’t
make it so he sent me.”
looked at the man in disbelief. Her first time to meet the man she
might marry and he couldn’t even find the time to come and pick her
up? Randi sighed and picked up her things.
let’s go then,” she replied.
helped Randi put her things on the horse and buggy and gave her a
hand up on the front. Randi sat up straight and paid a lot of
attention to her surroundings. It seemed like a dusty place but it
was wide open spaces and she liked that. That part reminded of her of
home. Randi missed her home some but she promised herself that she
would make this work somehow so she put her chin in the air and
pressed forward with a man she didn’t know, who was taking her to
another man she didn’t know.
looked nervous all the way to Will’s ranch. The only thing he asked
her was if she was ok. Randi smiled at herself she wasn’t sure who
was more nervous,
her or Kale. When she saw the ranch she was surprised at what she
saw. It wasn’t this big, fine, fancy ranch but a small cabin about
four rooms and a huge wide open area of cattle.
Will and Kale were
truly cowboys. There were horses in a corral to the left side of the
house and they were beautiful. There must have been a hundred horses
in this huge area.
helped Randi off of the buggy and took her trunk inside the cabin
while she stood there and took it all in. Randi looked around at her
new home and smiled to herself, thinking,
isn’t so bad.
She was a little anxious to see Will though and wondered when she
would be meeting him.
Randi took a step
towards the house and she could hear a commotion from inside the
house. Kale was trying to be quiet and he was obviously saying
something to another man.
is right outside
so you need to go greet her. Will, you are being rude to your girl.”
come in when she’s ready and there is a lot for her to do so she
needs to hurry up about it,” the other man was telling Kale.
assumed this must be Will and he seemed like he was a slight bit
arrogant but who knows, maybe she was wrong, she tried to convince
herself. Randi walked right on into the house and peered in the dark
at a man sitting in a chair with his dirty boots up on a table
drinking a glass of water.
man was filthy and looked like he hadn’t
bathed in a week. The house smelled and there were things strewn all
over the cabin. Randi was taken back at the mess that she saw inside
and the dirt all over the floor. The cabin seemed like it could have
been nice at one time but right now, it was a total disaster.
me sir, my name is Randi,” the young blonde girl said to Will as he
sat there staring at her like she was from another country.
that’s obvious and it’s about time. I thought Kale would be gone
all day picking you up.”
Will said this as he
stood up and crossed the room to stand in front of her.
didn’t know what to do because he was standing very close to her
like he was inspecting her. She wasn’t a horse for sale and she
to get angry. She thought better of it and tried biting down on her
lip, so she didn’t say anything bad.
you made it safe and I think it’s about time you get supper started
because we’re hungry. Kale and I have some work to do and we will
be back in later. Try to cook up something good because we’ve been
eating cornbread and gravy for weeks.”
Will walked out the front door and didn’t even look back.
Kale hung his head
and looked mad at his brother.
ma’am, and whatever you cook will be fine I’m sure. Your room is
two doors to the left of the kitchen and make yourself comfortable.”
Kale tipped his hat
to Randi and walked out the front door.
sat down in the chair and put her head in her hands. She wanted to
cry so badly but knew it would get her nowhere. No crying,
she thought. I can make this work. Maybe all this place needs is a
little cleaning and Will can be happy with me being here.
was a handsome man and she knew that he probably meant well but he
seemed so mean. She looked around and thought to herself,
better get to work if I want to clean and have dinner cooked in a
couple of hours.
went into the very filthy kitchen and took a look around her. This
place was an utter wreck and looked like a woman had never set foot
in this place. She cleaned a large cauldron and put it on the stove
for some meat and gravy. She found a large slab of beef and put it on
to boil with some onions, garlic, and seasonings. After that,
she made a roux for the gravy so it would be thick and then whipped
up some biscuits.
also found some greens
and cooked them down in a slab of bacon grease so that they looked
yummy and also made the house smell good. After supper was going she
started scrubbing the kitchen. It took her two hours to clean the
kitchen from top to bottom and she was pretty tired after she was
looked amazing though.
The floors were scrubbed and all the dust was removed. Randi was
pretty proud of her work, even if she did say so herself.
She decided that the
next day she could do the rest of the house so she walked outside and
took a look around. It was pretty easy to find the water spout and
she got some fresh water for drinking. She then wandered over to the
horses and realized that they were wild horses that had been
corralled. These men were cowboys and they had beautiful horses to
On the other side of
the house were cows as far as she could see. She wondered how long it
took to herd that many cattle. She saw Kale and Will branding the
cows and she didn’t want to bother them so she went back into the
Randi sat down for a
bit to rest her back and she fell asleep on her bed. She had meant to
be putting her stuff away but she was just so tired from her trip and
cleaning that very dirty kitchen that she fell right to sleep. It
seemed like just a few minutes and she heard someone hollering her
and she jumped up clear off her bed.
Randi left her room
and headed to the kitchen where Will and Kale were standing in the
center of the kitchen. Will had not even bothered to take off his
boots and was tracking dirt all over her freshly scrubbed floor. He
picked up a spoon and ate right out of the kettle. He put the spoon
back down and made a huge mess everywhere.
embarrassed and she noticed that he had removed his boots at the
front door. He was washed up already and staring at Will in
disbelief. Will looked at Randi then at Kale and said
are you two staring at? I’m ready to eat now.”
Randi shook her head
and set the table for the three of them to enjoy a nice dinner.
Before she could finish setting the spots Will had already sat down
and started eating his dinner. Randi sat down across from Will and
politely started eating her dinner. She wasn’t sure how to take the
man that was sitting across from her acting so rudely.
His letters never
indicated this kind of behavior and she wasn’t sure what she had
done to upset this man so much.
watched his brother be rude and couldn’t believe his attitude. Why
he was acting this way was beyond his knowledge but he knew when his
brother acted this way you couldn’t talk to him at all. The best
thing was to leave Will alone and let him work it out himself, he
The three adults sat
in silence and ate for a little while and when Will had finished he
actually thanked Randi for cooking the dinner. This was the first
nice thing he had said to her all day and this gave her a small bit
of hope. Randi stood up to clear the plates and other dishes while
the men went to the sitting room to rest.
finished up the cleaning and cleaned the floor up again where Will’s
boots had tracked in dirt then she went to see what the two men were
doing. She found Will asleep in a chair and Kale was reading a book
by lantern light. Randi excused herself and went to the room that had
been assigned to
her and she locked the door. She looked around the room and saw that
the furniture in the room was all fairly new.
was all beautiful and made from
cedar wood. She wondered who had made the furniture and thought they
were pretty talented. Randi was tired from her long day and changed
into her nightgown and bonnet. She lay in the large bed covered in
beautiful homemade quilts.
prayers she made a promise to herself that tomorrow would be better
no matter what. She was going to do a lot of cleaning and make sure
that Will knew how much she appreciated him giving her a chance to
come here and make a life.
room was filthy so she knew she would be too busy all day to get to
go outside much and that kind of made her sad. Randi closed her eyes
and thought of her grandparents. She knew they were worried but she
also knew that they were going to be okay. Randi slowly drifted off
into a deep sleep and slept
surprisingly well in a new place far away from her old home.
up early and realized that no one else was awake in the house yet.
She put on a pot of strong coffee for the two men and started some
bacon and eggs for their breakfast. Biscuits were her specialty so
she whipped up a fresh batch big enough to last them all day and then
sat down to enjoy her coffee before everyone else got up.
smelled a wonderful smell coming from the kitchen and remembered that
Randi was already here. He thought about the girl who had arrived
yesterday and how he hadn’t been that impressed with her arrival.
He wasn’t sure what exactly he had expected but he knew that he
hadn’t expected this small, frail-looking girl with the sad look.
He knew that he had been kind of rude but she needed to realize that
he wouldn’t be waiting on her or coddling her if she got sad about
missing her home.
needed a tough woman that was ready to
be a mother and take care of his place. Will got dressed and put his
dirty boots on. He walked out of his room at the same time Kale
exited his own room and they made eye contact. The food and coffee
smelled wonderful and whether Will liked to admit it or not he was
anxious to get some food in his stomach.
men went into the kitchen to find Randi sitting at the back door
looking out with her coffee in hand. She was so tiny and quiet that
Will thought her nickname should be Mouse. He then rethought this
because she might get insulted if he called her anything but Randi
and besides who was to say he wanted her to stay anyways.
Only time would tell
him whether or not he could love this woman and want her to stay in
turned to see the two men standing in the kitchen and she got up to
of breakfast for them.
looked at Randi and said,
“Its okay. I can help myself ma’am. You’ve done enough by just
snorted at his brother’s words and sat down at the table to allow
Randi to serve him. No woman of his would make him fix his own plate
at any meal, and she better realize that. Will stared at Randi as if
to warn her not to argue this point and she did get the point. Randi
hurried and fixed Will’s coffee and food and sat it down in front
of him. She looked at the rough looking man and spoke.
I do hope you like bacon and eggs with fresh biscuits.”
replied, “Yes I do and I like them hot so make sure that you don’t
cook the eggs to early before I get up.”
looked at the floor in disappointment and sat down to finish her
coffee when Kale angrily told Will, “That was mean, Will. This
woman has made you breakfast and coffee so stop being so rude to
Will turned to his
brother and gave him a hard stare. The look said enough and Kale shut
his mouth. Randi didn’t know what to do so she just hurried up and
cleaned the morning plates off of the table while the men got up to
leave the house.
men walked out the backdoor and Randi slipped outside to see where
they were going. They walked over to a large barn and took two horses
out of it by their halters. The horses were beautiful and Randi
wanted so badly to go ride them and learn to do some of the outside
work like they did, but she knew better than to even try it.
She returned into
the house as the men saddled up and rode off towards the east
the kitchen, Randi did a little organizing of the few jarred foods
that the two men owned. She figured there must be a friend that
brings them canned foods so she inspected them and made sure they
were all still good then she started
a pot of beans for supper.
She made some
homemade bread for lunch sandwiches and headed into the living room.
This room proved to be just plain dusty.
After two hours of
dusting and sweeping Randi stopped to take a look around. It looked
like a whole new cabin now. She was pretty pleased with herself and
then decided it was time to take on Will’s bedroom.
opened the door and looked around the small room, making a note that
it really wasn’t that dirty. She did a little dusting and hung the
blanket outside for some sun then swept the floors nice and tidy.
Will didn’t have much in his room but a small table and chair with
a dresser. There was a black and white photo of a lady that she
assumed to probably be his mom and she picked it up to inspect it.
The lady looked stern, with a tight bun in her hair and a ruffled
dress on. She wasn’t ugly, she just looked like she didn’t smile
replaced the picture then quietly headed to Kale’s room to see what
kind of mess he had in store for her. She opened the door to his room
and her mouth fell open wide. Kale’s room was as neat as a pin.
There was very little dust and his bed was already made. The floors
looked like they had been swept recently so Randi also took his
blanket and hung it on the outside porch for some sunlight to freshen
blanket was beautiful. It was yellow in color with bright blue blocks
sewed on it. Inside the block someone had stitched white roses. She
was impressed by how well the blanket was taken care of especially
for a single man. Randi thought about the drastic difference in the
two men then shook her head. It was wrong of her to compare the two
brothers and besides she need not think of anyone but Will. He
was to be her future husband and she needed to treat him as such.
at noon the two men were standing on the porch talking and Randi
decided they must be hungry. She went into the kitchen and fixed
sandwiches and set them on the table for them to enjoy. Again,
like yesterday, Kale came in with no boots on and Will came in filthy
as could be. Randi decided she would speak up this time because this
man needed to learn some manners.
would you please start taking your boots off at the door so you don’t
track in all of that dirt on the freshly swept floors,” Randi asked
him sweetly as she could.
Will stopped eating
and looked at her like she had slapped him.
he gruffly retorted,
“Your job is to keep this house clean and cook and my job is to
take care of the ranch. You do not tell me what to do and if you
don’t like something, keep it to yourself.”
shook her head in disbelief and looked at Kale for help on the
subject. Kale silently shook his head as if to say ‘don’t push
your luck’. He hated seeing Will treat Randi like this and it was
making him furious but he couldn’t say anything until his cabin was
completed and that would take a couple more months. He had been
working hard on his small cabin in the woods to the south of Will’s
and needed just a little more time.
two men finished their lunch in silence just as the day before,
then excused themselves for an afternoon herding the young heifers
back up to the corral. Will stopped at the door and told Randi they
would be late for supper but keep it hot for them and she just
Kale looked sad
again and for some reason that made Randi unhappy. Kale seemed like
such a nice man and Will seemed so rough around the edges. They were
like night and day in personality.
was just about to go back to doing some laundry when she had a
She had been stuck in the house too long and she deserved a small
break. Randi slipped into a comfortable dress and some boots then
went outside to see what she could find.
First thing she
noticed was a whole lot of cows in the fence near the cabin. There
were cows on one side and horses on the other. Randi loved horses so
she walked over to the corral and watched them stare back at her. She
talked to them for a while and then decided to go exploring.
There weren’t very
many trees on the ranch but there was a path that appeared to go
towards the south side of the house and she followed it for a long
ways. She came to a patch of trees but the path obviously continued
on. Randi looked around and decided she was alone so she continued
into the trees and along the narrow winding pathway.
walked for what seemed at least a half a mile until she saw an
opening in the trees up ahead. When Randi got to the opening she saw
a magnificent cabin that wasn’t finished but it was almost done
and sitting on top of a hill. It was small, but cute and she went
closer for a look. She didn’t go in but she walked all around the
cabin trying to figure out why it was just out in the middle of
Randi reached the back side of the cabin she saw another path that
went further and she asked herself ‘why stop now?’ She followed
the path a short ways and came to a small grave sitting alongside of
it. Near the grave was a tree with a swing in it. On the grave it
said Debbie Kennebrew, loving wife. Randi realized that it was Kale’s
wife’s grave and that must be Kale’s cabin.
was sad at the sight and it made her cry. She felt uneasy then like
she was trespassing and walked further along the path to find a small
was of interest so she sat by the creek for a long while. Randi
thought about many things that day by the creek and she felt like she
was very confused about life. Will obviously didn’t like her and
she didn’t know what to do about it.
cried a little but it was more out of frustration than
After a long while
Randi knew she had to get back because the sun was getting low. She
hurried along the path to get back but stopped to pick a few fresh
flowers for Debbie’s grave and she placed them as she passed it.
She paid her respects and then hurried back to the cabin that she
shared with the two men.
made the men’s beds back up and heated the beans so they would be
hot when they came in. She decided it was best not to tell them about
her adventure because she didn’t know how Will would react and Kale
might get mad that she had been so nosey.
like clockwork she heard a noise right after dark and the two men
came in but surprisingly, both had taken off their boots at the door.
Randi decided it was best not to mention it and they sat down for
how was your day Will,”
Randi asked him as he ate his dinner.
was another day in the life of a cowboy,” Will answered her while
eating his beans and cornbread.
Randi thought about
asking Kale but thought better of it so she made small talk about the
weather being nice and how pretty the horses were outside. She told
them about her horse at the old cabin and she mentioned some about
her grandparents but she quickly got quiet when Will looked bored
with the conversation.
was over and Randi was cleaning up when Will came into the kitchen
and told her to sit down. Randi reluctantly sat at the table and
looked him in the eyes. Will had no nonsense eyes that showed little
a lot like his mom.
“Randi are you
happy with your room and board here?”
Will asked her like
she was a tenant and not his future wife.
thought about it for a second and she told him, “I’m happy about
it and I enjoy being here. Thank you.”
tomorrow I’ll give you a horse to ride and you can get out of the
house some on the weekends when you do not have chores. Kale
suggested I do it so don’t get all schoolgirl happy on me,” Will
told her in a stern voice.
must have been glowing because she was pleased. He told her she could
pick out of the three horses he had broken in and she would take care
of it herself. She jumped up to thank him but he told her to thank
Kale, not him, because it was totally his idea.
into the living room and sat down next to Kale in a small chair made
of more beautiful wood, just like the wood that was in her bedroom.
you Kale. I really am excited about the new horse. I rode horses a
lot at my grandparents and I’m really good at it.”
Kale looked shy but
he smiled and Randi noticed how cute the man was when he was relaxed
are welcome Randi. I heard you talking about how much you liked to be
outside so I thought it was a great idea,” Kale said as he stood up
was so excited about tomorrow that she excused herself and went to
room to turn in early. She lay in bed for hours listening to the two
men turn in for bed and the coyotes howling outside. It was a nice
sound that she felt she could get used to. She tossed and turned
imagining the time she would spend with her new horse outside.
Maybe she would even
find time to ride into town and see what kind of other people lived
around here. She fell asleep thinking that this place wasn’t so
bad maybe she just hadn’t given it enough time to grow on her.
woke up early as usual and dressed a little warmer today than the day
before. It was April but it seemed a little chilly outside and she
wanted to ride her horse today as much as possible. It was Saturday
and her chores were all caught up so she planned on packing a lunch
and doing some riding in town. Randi went into the kitchen and
braided her hair down one side so that it swung kind of loosely. She
threw together some ham and eggs for the three of them and put on
some fresh coffee.
came into the kitchen first and stopped dead in his tracks. Since his
wife had passed he had not bothered looking at another woman and
Randi was the prettiest thing he had ever seen. She was kind of short
long beautiful hair with large round eyes. Her eyes had such life in
them and they always looked curious as to learn something new. She
had an apron tied around her skinny waist and a light yellow dress on
that made her look like the color spring would if spring had a color.
was humming and making coffee just like his wife used to and his
heart skipped a beat. Kale shook his head and knew
that these thoughts were wrong since she was supposed to marry his
brother. Kale hurried to the table and sat down for breakfast just as
Will entered the room.
never stopped to notice Randi’s beauty or the small things like the
curl that was slipping out of her braid and hanging around her face.
He just hurried to the table for his coffee and breakfast.
after breakfast dishes you can come outside and pick out your horse,”
Will told Randi, who was staring at him with her big beautiful eyes.
Will, thank you so much. You don’t know how happy this makes me.”
Randi beamed at him with her pretty white teeth and pink lips.
Kale noticed that
his brother never even looked at the girl and he shook his head. He
knew that Will wasn’t interested in this girl and it was just a
matter of time before he sent her away. This made Kale kind of sad to
think about. He didn’t want Randi to go and he thought that he
might need to have a talk with his brother before this happened.
was just so hard to talk to and Kale knew that if his mind was made
up there would be no talking him out of it. Randi deserved more than
to be someone’s maid,
but it was her choice.
hurried up and did the chores as fast as she could. She heated up the
previous days beans and covered them for their lunch and packed
herself a sandwich and some water for her ride. She slipped her
boots on and headed out to the horse corral.
the corral stood Kale and Will,
with three horses tied up to the fence. One was white with a black
star on its face, the other was chestnut with a white mane and tail
and the last was black as night with white tips in its legs at the
hooves. All three were gorgeous, but Randi still knew exactly which
one she wanted for herself. She smiled widely when she saw the black
horse. It was the prettiest thing she had ever seen and she walked
right up to it and grabbed the reins.
is my horse
Will, this is the one I want,” she told him confidently.
looked at Will and smirked at his brother.
horse is yours then. Name her what you want, but Kale called her
this Kale’s horse,” Randi asked Will, confused by his response.
was the horse I had bought for my wife right before she passed away,
but she never even rode her,” Kale told her in a small voice. “I’m
glad you chose her though because she is a beautiful creature that
deserves some attention.”
wasn’t sure what she should do, but she still wanted the beautiful
call her Shine then,” she told Kale as she stroked the horse’s
she walked all around the horse looking at her and loving everything
Will informed her
that he had things to do and he left her to take care of her new
horse. Kale also said he had things to do and Randi watched him ride
off towards the trail she had found yesterday. She knew where he was
going and she had the strange urge to follow him but she decided it
was best not to.
mounted Shine and started riding towards town. She took her slow at
first to get a feel for her,
then broke her into a wide open run. She handled very well and Randi
felt great riding her hard and fast. Shine ran for a while then
slowed down into a gallop as they got close to town. She rode the
horse to the general store and then tied her up out front.
into the store for a look around and Will had left a small amount of
change for her to buy anything they needed for the cabin. She shopped
around for a while and saw a pretty woman sitting at the counter, so
Randi decided to go and talk to her.
you the young woman that Kale was writing to for a mail order bride,”
the lady asked Randi.
fell open wide and she looked at the woman.
but there must be some mistake. Will wrote to me, not Kale.”
lady looked at Randi and smiled.
honey, Kale came here once a week and wrote to you and I know because
I mailed the letters for him after I told him what to say to you.”
was confused, so she bought some sugar and put it in her saddlebag
then mounted up for the ride home. She thought about what the woman
had said to her and then it all made sense. She just thought she had
been talking to Will, but after meeting him she should have known
that he wasn’t the same man. Will was so mean and rude and Kale was
nice and softer around the edges. Maybe Will had Kale write the
letters for him and Kale just did as he was told.
else made a lot of sense to her and she intended to
ask them later.
Randi rode up on
Shine and dropped the sugar off at the house. She looked around and
didn’t see anybody around so she decided to ride Shine down the
path to Kale’s cabin and see what he had to say about the letters.
She galloped down the path and enjoyed looking at the scenery as she
went. It was so pretty and she felt like she could ride this path
She slowed down as
she approached the cabin and saw Kale putting some boards in a pile.
and walked over to Kale to talk to him. He heard her coming and
stopped what he was doing to see what Randi needed. She looked at
Kale and then asked him if they could sit down for a minute. Kale
looked nervous but took a seat in the grass and drank some water as
Randi started talking.
you’re very nice and I heard something today that made no sense to
me. A lady in town asked me about being a mail order bride and she
told me that you had written the letters to me, not Will.”
said this as she sat crossed legged across from Kale,
looking at him reluctantly.
looked shocked and didn’t really know what to say but he decided
the truth was best.
I did write the letters because Will needed someone to love and to
bring him out of his distressed state he has been in for years. He
has never loved anyone and I thought that a good woman would make him
act different. I’m
sorry I deceived you and if you want to leave I will understand.”
Randi thought about
this for a moment and she chose her words carefully before she
I do not like Will at all. I somehow knew that you had written the
letters and not him. I do not want to leave though, and I’m scared
to tell you why.”
Kale stared at her
scared about what she was fixing to say. He thought he was falling in
love with Randi and didn’t know how to tell her. Could it be that
she felt the same way about him also?
“I think I am
falling in love with you Kale.”
Randi said this
quickly and looked him right in the eyes because she wanted to know
how he really felt about her.
sighed with relief and yet at the same time knew that he would have
to handle the situation with Will.
I feel the same way about you. I’ve
liked you since I picked you up from the stagecoach and my feelings
for you have just gotten stronger. I have to tell Will though, and I
don’t know how he will react.”
Randi grabbed Kale
into a hug. She had never been in love before and he loved her back.
That was a feeling like no other. She was worried about telling Will
and this made her very nervous.
“When should we
tell him Kale”? Randi asked him in a serious voice.
tell him soon just let me think about how. Until then we will not
bring any attention to this matter, ok,” Kale told her quickly.
Randi agreed this
was a good idea so they spent the rest of the day working on Kale’s
cabin and talking like best friends. They talked about all of the
things they had experienced in their pasts and what the future could
hold for them.
Later that afternoon
Randi decided she had better head home and cook some dinner for the
three of them. She mounted Shine and rode off down the path towards
home. She had a lot to think about and she couldn’t wrap her head
around the fact that she had finally found love in a strange place.
Her parents would have been happy for her and her grandparents would
be thrilled also.
sat down for a while and thought about the day’s events. He never
knew he could find love again since
his wife had died and Randi was amazing. She was everything he had
ever wanted and he wanted to make sure she was happy. This gave him
reason to hurry and finish his cabin so that they had somewhere to
live as a family. He was great at building but it just took time. He
also needed to figure out when the best time to tell Will that he and
Randi were in love.
hard well into the afternoon and decided that he could get a lot more
accomplished if he worked some after dark every night. He was going
to head to Will’s and get some things so that he could stay and
work a lot more.
the house to find Will sitting on the porch looking out at the
distance. When he saw Kale he smiled at him.
glad you are home brother. I have something to say to you if you will
please sit down.”
Kale looked happy to
Will so he knew that what he had been noticing was true. What Kale
didn’t know was this had all been planned. Will had known his
brother needed a mate after his wife had died and it was killing him
not to have one. Will liked being alone but Kale did not. Kale looked
at his brother and wondered what he was thinking.
“Kale I want you
to know that I know about your feelings for Randi.”
Kale opened his
mouth to speak but Will stopped him.
brother, don’t go denying it, ok? You love Randi and I think she
loves you. I want you to be happy and I have no feelings for the
young woman. Please understand that I did all of this so you could
move on with your life. Now, let me help you finish your cabin so
that the two of you can get married and live happily.”
Kale sat there for a
long time in silence. Was he really hearing what he thought? He
couldn’t believe his brother was just handing him Randi and had
planned this whole thing. That’s why Will had been so rude to the
girl because he wanted her to not fall for him. That was a crazy idea
but it seemed to have worked. Kale reached over and grabbed his
brother in a hug that squeezed the breath out of Will.
“Thank you so much
Will, but what about you”?
it or not, brother, I have met a girl that lives not far from here.
She is everything I have ever wanted and I am in love with her. I
knew you were not happy though, so I needed to find you a mate.”
These words made
Kale even happier and he did a little dance around the porch. Randi
could hear the commotion from inside the house and she came out to
see what was going on. She saw Kale dancing and Will watching him
happily. This confused her greatly.
stared at the two men with a confused look on her face for a few
minutes before she asked,
“What in the devil has gotten into you two”.
Kale grabbed Randi
by the waist and danced her around the porch as well.
said to her. “We are free to be together. This was all planned by
Will and he wants us to be together because he is in love with
looked at Will and asked, “Is this true, Will?”
Will shook his head
yes and smiled at the young woman.
“I was rude
because I wanted you to fall for my brother not me. For this I am
sorry but it had to be done.”
Randi smiled at the
two brothers and couldn’t believe her luck. She had taken a chance
on a man that had meant well for her after all. She hugged Will and
thanked him for everything and then turned to Kale. He was so
handsome. His hair was kind of long and hung on his forehead and his
eyes were smiling now.
she had noticed the sadness in his eyes now that was gone. She had
taken the sadness away from this man and made him happy again. Randi
decided this meant a celebration for the trio.
“I have a surprise
dinner for this occasion.”
Randi went inside and started a pan of thick-cut steaks and potatoes
with white gravy. After she had finished this she heated up some
biscuits and took an apple pie out of the oven that she had started
The two men smelled
the apple pie and wrestled each other all the way into the kitchen
where Randi stood by the table with flour on her face and a smile.
Kale walked over to his future wife and wiped the flour from her
cheek. He then kissed her right on the forehead.
you are the best cook I have ever met. Don’t you think so,
smiled at the two and said, “I don’t know. You haven’t tasted
my Vickie’s cooking.”
is a lucky woman and I can’t wait to meet her,” Kale told his
brother with a goofy grin. “Maybe this coming week we could have
her over for dinner.”
will be happening sooner than you think. We got married today at the
courthouse. In fact, she is headed this way now with her things,”
Will told the two of them.
Randi noticed Kale’s
mouth drop wide open and she laughed.
wonderful! I will make her a plate.”
jumped up and made an extra plate for the surprise guest of the house
and heated up a fresh steak for the young woman. What a great day it
had turned out to be, she thought. She was used to change but this
was all happening so quickly.