The Trials and Tribulations of a Girl?
A Novel By Teddie S.
Copyright © 2018 Teddie S.
All Rights Reserved.
Church? Mary Beth. The dream.
Saturday had been a crazy day. We’d followed Larry and Kelly to Muncie Indiana to meet Kelly’s family. We met them alright, Mr. O’Brian and I had gotten into, for the lack of better words, a discussion. And I’d finished up by calling him a bigot. We’d left the house followed quickly by Kelly and Larry. Then we’d checked into a local motel and ended up sharing a room.
We’d been given the cooks tour of Muncie by Kelly. The last place we stopped was the church where Kelly and Larry were to be married. We had a nice talk with the priest. Then we found Mrs. O’Brian at the motel when we got back, and we discussed what had happened at lunch.
Then we went star gazing, Did the shooting star that Amy saw mean something?
Sunday morning I was awake early. I worked my way out of bed trying not to wake up Amy, Larry, or Kelly. Yes, because of what happened with Kelly’s father, the four of us had shared a motel room. I was in the bathroom for a few minutes, when there was a soft knock, and I heard Amy whisper, “Honey, can I came in.”
I opened the door, and Amy came in. We shared a kiss and proceeded to get dressed. When we were finally dressed, we snuck out of the bathroom, and then out of the motel room trying not to wake the other two. We walked over to the pool area and sat at one of the tables. The sun was just coming up, so it was a little chilly. Amy got cold, so she came over and sat on my lap, and I held her.
We sat there quietly for a while, with me just holding her, then Amy whispered, “I sure miss the Sunrises out west.”
“I know.”, I said. “I do too.”
“I had a dream last night.”
“I saw the shooting star again. Then I saw a native girl and a sailor.”
“So it was an Indian girl and a navy guy.”
“Maybe. The guy was a sailor, but the uniform was strange. It was old-fashioned, and it was fancy like he was an officer of some kind.”
“An old fancy uniform. Was it a military uniform?
“I don’t know.”
“What were they doing?”
“They were sitting on a big log in the woods and kissing.”
“So they were in love?”
“I think. And I felt good about them.”
“I felt like I know them. Then I woke up.”
“I know. I wonder what it means?”
“There you guys are.”, we head someone say.
We looked in the direction that the voice was coming from, and it was Larry. And he said, “We thought you went to breakfast without us.”
“Nope.”, I said. “We just came out to watch the Sunrise.”
“Not really. Nothing compared to what we’ve seen out west. Where’s Kelly?”
“Taking a shower. Want to catch some breakfast?”
As we were eating breakfast at a nearby restaurant, Kelly asked, “So you going to church with us?”
“I guess we can.”, I replied.
“We usually go to the ten o’clock mass and then lunch.”
“We can do that. But we don’t have any Sunday go to meetin’ clothes with us.”
“I usually go in a dress, or a skirt and blouse.”, Kelly said. “And Larry will sometimes wear a suit, or a shirt and dress slacks.”
“I’ve got my long skirt and another blouse.”, Amy said.
“I’ve got a pair of jeans and a ribbon shirt.”, I said.
“A ribbon shirt?”, Kelly asked.
“It’s kind of a semi-fancy shirt that they wear out west. And will make me look more like an Indian then I do now. Even with blond hair.”
“Oh. That may be interesting.”
“My dad. I don’t know how he’ll react to it.”
“I guess we can just try it and find out.”
We went back to the motel and got cleaned up. Kelly was in a pretty dress. Amy was in her long blue skirt and a white blouse. Larry was in slacks and a dress shirt, at least it wasn’t a suit. Me? I was in a pair of what I’d call dress jeans and the ribbon dress.
When Kelly saw me, she said, “I love the shirt. So they wear these out in New Mexico?”
“Yes. It’s semi-fancy dress. The guys will wear them on dates and even to school.”
“I guess we’ll see what happens.”
“Remember.”, Amy said. “I had that feeling that everything will be okay.”
We checked out of the motel and headed to the church. As we parked, we saw people in various dress, some in suits and pretty dresses, others dressed in a more casual way.
After we'd parked, we walked towards the church. And as we walked, I said, “I’d feel better if we sat at the back of the church.”
“That’s fine.”, Kelly said. “My family usually sits right up front.”
“You can sit with them if you like.”
“No. You’re our guests, and we’ll sit with you.”, Kelly said. “Oh. There’s my parents and Connor.”
I looked towards where she was looking. Amy’s dad looked like he was wearing a very expensive suit. Her mother was in a pretty summer dress. And Connor was in a suit and looked uncomfortable.
They spotted us, Amy’s mother smiled and waved. Her dad, I couldn’t read. And Connor smiled. Then Connor walked over to us. When he got to us, he said, “Tom and Amy, I’m glad you came. Dad figured you wouldn’t and was surprised to see you. And Tom that shirt is cool.”
I smiled, and said, “I got it in New Mexico. And it’s the dressiest shirt I have with me.”
Kelly asked, “Connor, what kind of mood is Dad in?”
“Better than yesterday.”, Connor said. “He was speechless after Tom finished with him, and then he was quiet the rest of the day. I know that he and mom had a long talk. There was some raised voice once in a while. But by dinner time everything had calmed down.
“But, you know how he always grumbles when people come to church and aren’t all dressed up.”
“So he said something about Larry and Tom.”
“Not Tom, I think mom would have kicked him if he had. But he grumbled about Larry. And mom told him to be quiet.”
“He should be happy that I’m here at all.”, Larry said.
“Mom actually told him to be quiet!?”, Kelly asked.
“Yeah. She’s been standing up to him more and more. And I think yesterday added some fuel to her fire.”
“Oh.”, Kelly said, with a little smile.
“Yeah. When I got home two weeks ago, you could feel and see the difference.”
“Interesting. Do you think what Dad said to Tom yesterday was because of mom being more exertive and standing up for herself, and he was releasing pent-up anger?”
“I don’t know sis. You’re the psych major. I’m just a lowly Marine.”
“Hmm.”, Kelly said. “Interesting.”
We sat through the mass, and I guess it was okay. And since we were sitting in the back, we were some of the first to walk out. As we walked out the priest, that we’d met yesterday, was standing there. When he saw us, he smiled, and said, “Tom and Amy, it’s good to see that you decided to come to church.”
“Hello, Father John.”, I said. “We came as a favor to Kelly. Organized religion isn’t my thing.”
“Have you reconciled things with Mr. O’Brian?”
“No, sir. But we’ll see what happens today.”
“That’s all you can do.”
We stood out in front of the church waiting for Kelly’s parents when this bubbly red-headed girl almost screamed, “Kelly.” Then ran up to her and hugged her. Then the girl said, “Kelly, I didn’t know you were in town?”
“Mary Beth.”, Kelly said. “We just came to see mom, dad, and Connor.”
“How long are you going to be here?”
“We’re going back later today. Maybe tomorrow.”
“Oh no. I won’t get to see you.”
“Mary Beth, these are my friends Amy and Tom Young. Amy and Tom, this is my cousin Mary Beth O’Brian.”
“Oh. Hi Amy and Tom. I’ve heard a lot about you. I wish I could go out west and see the cowboys and Indians like you do.”
“Well Mary Beth, I don’t think we’ve ever seen any cowboys.”, I said. “And you’re looking at an Indian right now.”
“Oh. Wow. You’re an Indian. That is so cool. Where’s your feather? I’ve got to run. Mom and dad are taking us out for pancakes. Bye.”
As Mary Beth ran off, Kelly said, “Bye, Mary Beth.”
“Who or what was that whirlwind?”, Amy asked.
“I’m sorry.”, Kelly said.
“Is she going to be able to stand still through your wedding?”, I asked. But I was thinking, ‘Why am I feeling some animosity between Kelly and Mary Beth.’
Then I caught Larry rolling his eyes.
We then saw Kelly’s mother, father, and brother walk out of the church. Her mother saw us and started walking towards us. Her dad just stood there for a minute, then followed. Connor was off talking to a girl.
As Mrs. O’Brian walked up, she said, “Amy and Tom, I’m so happy to see that you decided to come.”
“We did it as a favor to Kelly. And it’s nice to see you again.”, I said.
Then Mr. O’Brian walked up, and I thought, ‘Well here goes nothing.’
Mr. O’Brian then said, “Good morning.”
I think we all said, “Good morning.”
“I’m glad you came to mass.”
Amy said, “Kelly asked us to come.”
“Are you going to lunch with us?”
“No one has asked us.”
“Well then, I’m asking?”
“Tommy, are we going to lunch?”, Amy asked.
“It’s fine by me.”, I said.
Mr. O’Brian looked at me for the first time since he walked up. Then he said, “Good. Let’s find Connor, and we’ll go.”
We followed the O’Brian’s as we looked for Connor. And Amy whispered, “So far so good.”
“If you say so.”, I said. “He was a little cold.”
“Give it time.”
We found Connor and headed for a nice restaurant. As we sat, Mr. O’Brian sat at the head of the table. No surprise there. I sat on his left with Amy and Connor between Mr. O’Brian and me.
After they had served the food, Mr. O’Brian said grace. Then without looking at me, he said, “Tom, what happened yesterday was uncalled for. I should have never acted the way I did.”
“Yes, sir.”, I said. “It should have never happened. You not only attacked my wife and me, but your own daughter and future son-in-law, and my people. And I like people to look at me when they talk to me. It shows sincerity in what they’re saying.
“I don’t tolerate being attacked that way. And it will take a lot for me to forgive you.
“And, sir you need to think back to when the Irish, your people, first came to this country and how they were treat. You’ve treated us the same way.”
Finally looking at me, Mr. O’Brian said, “Tom, I’m not used to someone standing up to me the way you are doing it. I usually have the last word.”
“I understand that.”, I said. “You’re an important person and have a lot of people working for you. And they’re probably afraid to speak their minds. I’m not.”
“Mrs. O’Brian did tell me that you are a strong and to the point person.”
“Yes sir, I am.”
Then looking at both Amy and me, Mr. O’Brian said, “Amy and Tom. The most important thing to me is the happiness of my only daughter. And I know yesterday that I blew it. I just hope, that in time, Kelly and Larry can forgive me. And maybe even the two of you can see it in your heart to forgive this old fool.
“Having your children mad at you isn’t good.”
“No, sir. It isn’t.”, I said.
The women changed the subject to the wedding, so at least for the time being the problem between Mr. O’Brian and me was shoved to the side. We finished eating, and as we were leaving the restaurant, Connor said that he had to run as he was meeting some friends. Everyone was saying goodbye to him.
When he came to me, I took his hand in mine to shake it, and I felt something. I asked, “Connor, what do you do in the Marines?”
“I took ROTC in college, and I’ve just finished boot camp.”, Connor replied. “So I’m shortly off to flight school.”
“Yeah. I’m going to learn to fly helicopters.”
Very seriously, I said, “Connor, be safe.”
Then he got a hug from Amy, as she said, “So long, Connor. It’s been nice to meet you. And we’ll see you at Kelly’s wedding.”
Connor then said, “Goodbye, Amy. Meeting you and Tom has been interesting.”
“Connor, we never say goodbye. It’s too permanent. We only say, so long.”
“Okay, Amy. So long until the wedding.”
“So long, Connor.”
We followed the O’Brian’s back to their house, and we spent a nice afternoon with them. Mr. O’Brian was actually pleasant. Kelly and Mark were staying until Monday, and as Amy and I were leaving they walked out to the car with us. Kelly said, “Tom, you put my dad in his place today. I don’t think anyone has ever done that before. It took guts.”
“Not guts Kelly.”, I said. “It was standing up for what’s right.”
We then said so long to Kelly and Mark.
After we’d been on the road for a short time, Amy said, “You’re awful quiet.”
“Sorry.”, I said. “I’ve just been thinking.”
“How did you know?”
“I saw the look on your face when you shook hands with him. You felt something didn’t you?”
“Yeah. But I’m not sure what it was.”
“What do you think it was?”
“I don’t know. I just hope it wasn’t something bad.”
Amy curled up and slept for about an hour. I guess the stress of the last two days must have gotten to her.
When we were back home, we stopped at one of our favorite drive-ins for dinner. I just love sitting in the car with the top down, with Amy next to me, having a burger, fries, and a shake for dinner. There’s nothing better.
As we were eating, Amy said, “I had that dream again while I was napping.”
“Dream?”, I asked.
“That same one I had last night, with the Indian girl and the sailor.”
“Oh. Was it the same as the first one?”
“Hmm. I wonder what it means? If it means anything.”
“I don’t know. But I still had the feeling that I know them.”
“Naainish, where are you when we need you?”
We got home and unpacked. Then sat on the porch for a while before going to bed.
A little after one in the morning, Amy woke me up, saying, “Honey. Honey. Wake up.”
I did wake up, and said, “What’s wrong?”
“Nothing. I just had that dream again.”
“Yeah. Why am I having this dream? The same dream.”
“I have Naainish’s phone number. Do you want to try and get a hold of him in the morning.”
“Maybe. I need answers. If there are any.”
“Try to get some sleep.”
We cuddled together and went back to sleep.
In the morning I rolled over to look at Amy, and she wasn’t there. I sat up and looked around and no Amy. I noticed that her robe was gone. I got out of bed, slipped on my robe, and went looking for her. I looked all over the house and couldn’t find her. I was ready to start yelling for her when I looked on the porch, and she was sitting on the glider.
I walked out on the porch, sat next to her, and asked, “Honey are you okay?”
“Yeah.”, she replied. “I just had that dream again. And I needed to get some fresh air. So I came out here.”
“How long have you been out here?”
“About an hour. It’s amazing how quiet it is.”
“Are we going to try and call Naainish this morning.”
“Might be a good thing to do.”
As I stood up, I offered Amy my hand, and I said, “Let's get some breakfast.”
As we ate, I said, “I think along with Naainish, that we need to call Mrs. Edwards today and see where things stand with the scholarship.”
“It has been a while.”, Amy replied. “And they should have something for us.”
“We’ll start with Naainish at nine. It’ll be seven their time. If we can’t reach him, then we’ll call Aunt Ruth, see if she can find him and have him call us collect.”
“And then sit here and wait for him to call or what?”
“If necessary, we’ll wait.”
“You’d do that?”
“Why wouldn’t I. I’d do anything for you.”
With a cute smile, Amy said, “I know you would.”
Just before nine, Amy said, “Why don’t we call Mrs. Edwards first and get that over with, then call Naainish?”
“I like your thinking, Mrs. Young.”, I said.
A little after nine, I did call Mrs. Edwards office. She told me that she had talked with my financial advisor and that they would like to get together with us to discuss what they’ve found. I told her to set something up, maybe a lunch meeting, and that Amy and I would work our schedule to be there.
Then I tried to call Naainish and no answer. I then called my Aunt Ruth, and after the usual pleasantries, I explained that we needed to get a hold of Naainish and why. She was a little concerned for Amy, but I told her that it wasn’t a bad dream, but something that we needed to find out about. She said that she’d try to locate Naainish and have him call us. I reminded her to tell him to make it collect.
Then we waited. We didn’t just sit there, but did things, cleaned up the house, read, and so on. Then just before noon, the phone rang. I answered it, “Hello.”
A female voice said, “This is the operator. I have a collect call for a Kai Nez from a Naainish Yazzie. Will you accept the charges?”
“Yes, we will.”
“Go ahead, Mr. Yazzie.”
“Hello, Kai.”, I heard Naainish say.
“Hello, Naainish. How are you?”
“I’m fine. But I hear that Ajie has a problem.”
“Yes. She’s had a reoccurring dream, and we’re hoping that you can shed some light on it.”
“I’ll let you talk to her.”
I handed Amy the phone, and she and Naainish exchanged greetings. Then I heard her explain her dream in detail to him and also about seeing the shooting star just before having the dream the first time. Then she listened for a minute.
Then Amy said, “I know that somewhere in my family history, back in England, that there were sailors, both in the British navy and elsewhere.” … “I don’t know, but I guess it’s possible.” … “I could talk to my mother and see what she knows.” … “Yes, my grandparents on my mother's side came over from England.” … “Okay.” … “Okay.” … “Thank you Naainish, and we’ll let you know what we find out.” … “Hágoónee'.”
And Amy hung up the phone.
I looked at her, and asked, “Well. What were Naainish's words of wisdom?”
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