Beauchamp, Plain and Tall: 3

thatsoccercoach:

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It was the dogs who loved Claire first, I think.

Her room was small and the bed was covered in a faded quilt. A quilt that Mam had made. I put cut flowers in a vase on the small bedside table. Claire didn’t snore. Bran slept next to her.

In the morning her window panes would be fogged with moisture that condensed and slid down to the sill. It was there her shells sat, lined up in a row, beautiful and foreign.

“Where are you going?” asked Willie one morning as Claire left the house, bonnet in hand.

“Flower-picking. I’ll find some color. Find some fresh, sweet smelling flowers and I’ll hang them from the rafters to dry. Once they’re dry we’ll have flowers all winter long,” she told him.

Winter. I heard it too. Claire had said “Winter” but I didn’t dare to hope.

And we picked the flowers together. The wild roses that Mam had tended close to the house would bloom in early summer. I told Claire as much and watched her face when I said it. Summer. That could be when Da and Claire’s wedding would be.

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