To The Lonely Seas And The Sky -- Part 8
The fictional tale of lighthouse keepers in the 1880's, tending a Lake Michigan lighthouse. The characters in this story are completely fictional, while the lighthouse is quite real and still in use. The details of its function, while not necessarily specific to this exact light, are consistent with the general function of lighthouses in this era.
Liesl rocked back in forth in the chair by the wood burning stove, staring into the bright, dancing flames. Rain steadily increased until it produced a drenching downpour, its cadence beating against the kitchen window. She twisted her hair unconsciously between her fingers as she sat basking in the heat, unaware of the rain and deep in thought.
Something told her that all was far from well with Samuel. While his condition had been worse a week prior, he wasn't healing as a healthy young man ought. Every time Liesl changed the dressings, she was disappointed by the lack of progression toward normalcy that she noted in the bleeding, angry tissue.
He should have been out of bed days ago, Liesl admitted to herself somberly, her hair knotting around her anxious fingertips. At the rising feeling of unrest in her stomach, she pondered her options. There was no way to summon the physician until the morning. Perhaps...perhaps Ellie would be agreeable to checking the wound, just this once.
Deep instinct immediately rejected the thought. When Samuel had been injured and brought back to the lighthouse from the lifesaving station, his life hung tenuously in the balance for several days. Liesl had tended his every need while attempting to maintain the light as well. Upon hearing of the accident, Ellie had rushed to Grand Pointe au Sable, ready and willing to assist Liesl with whatever she could--except the one thing Liesl had expected.
Liesl sat back in her chair and sighed, her brow furrowed. Ellie never spoke of what she had seen when she and Mama had set off one summer years ago in July during the war. The experience had been a vacation for Liesl, Maidie and Johann, who found themselves under the liberal care of their kindly old neighbor. The elderly Mrs. Appleton indulged them to their hearts' content, the frugal widow loosening her purse strings upon assuming care of the three exuberant children.
Mama, much like Ellie, had been intentionally vague in her description of their travels. All Liesl really knew was that the two of them had assisted a few men who were injured in battle, but that her father wasn't among them. It was always implied that the men who they had met had serendipitously been acquainted with her father. They had assured Mama and Ellie that he was safe, well out of harm's way. Four months later, Ellie and Mama returned to Baltimore, but quiet, reserved Ellie was never quite the same.
Liesl had been content to believe that story. And why should she question it? After all, what would Mama and Ellie possibly have to keep from her? The voice of reason loudly protested her rising suspicion. But many years ago, doubt had slowly begun creeping in around that voice, suggesting that perhaps there had been more to that journey than any of Ellie's siblings knew.Last edit by AN Admin Team on Feb 20, '17
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