The new page replaces Natalie: Discussion Questions and the Berkshire County Chronicles Characters pages. This page contains more information about characters and the completed list of Natalie Discussion questions. This page also has a stories part of it which list the current and coming soon stories in the Berkshire County Chronicles! This page contains a tiny spoiler to installment five and six of My Crazy Life: Episode I so read at your own risk! 🙂
Check out our new page! The Berkshire Chronicles Characters page gives a little bit of information about the character (I plan to add descriptions soon!). Check the page out…you may find something out about the character you never knew.
At the current moment Natalie is my main priority. Natalie will be slowly getting faster (in regards to time) and we’ll soon be in part three. You may notice that Farm Girl and Gifted are behind and posted less often. Please understand that I am still writing Farm Girl and Gifted but not as much as Natalie.
I woke up to the smell of burnt bacon. I had overslept again.
I opened the door and stepped on an egg. Aunt Jane is forgetful but…………
I soon felt a chicken pecking my unprotected toes.
“AUNT JANE!” I called running down the stairs. “Why is there a chicken at my bedroom door?”
I looked at the table and saw Leo sitting there poking at an attempt at an oatmeal sandwich.
“And why is Leo Logan in my house?” I asked crossing my arms.
“Ms. O’Donnell called me last night and said that she wanted me here at your house first thing in the morning to talk about the ball,” Leo said. “She didn’t even care that a blizzard was coming.”
“And that’s why I brought the chickens in the house,” Aunt Jane said placing an oatmeal sandwich down on the table.
“Ms. O’Donnell asked you to put the chickens inside the house?” I asked knowing that wasn’t the answer.
“No,” Aunt Jane laughed. “A blizzard is coming and the last time we had a blizzard I plum forgot about the chickens and three of them froze to the death the poor things.”
A chicken started to peck at my toes.
“Lynn, stop it!” Aunt Jane shouted to the chicken.
“Can I use your restroom?” Leo asked.
“Sure, darling, right now the hall,” Aunt Jane said putting a live chicken in the oven. “WHOOPS!”
Leo stared at me as if I was the one who just put the chicken in the oven and walked down the hall.
“The boy likes ya,” Aunt Jane said putting the oven chicken in the sink.
“A boy doesn’t risk his life in a blizzard to see some girl just because a teacher asked him to,” Aunt Jane said turning the facet on and letting the water run on the chicken.
“You don’t know Ms. O’Donnell,” I said.
“Oh, yes I do,” Aunt Jane said. “The woman’s lonely that’s all.”
That gave me a brilliant idea.
“What guy would be stupid enough to go out on a date with Ms. O’Donnell?” Natalie asked. It was a couple days later the day before Valentine’s Day to be exact. Natalie and the rest of the B&B gang excluding Ms. Edwards had been in a car crash.
I had made Zach his special Valentine and had sold Valentines to Timmy, Jaci, and Abby. I was out walking with Natalie to the Treasure Chest for Valentine’s Day gifts. I was also carrying around my box.
“We’ll we have to find somebody,” I said.
“Good luck,” Natalie snorted as we walked into the store.
Someone knocked Natalie and me over.
“Watch where you’re going!” Natalie shouted trying to get up.
“Sorry, Nat,” Darcy said helping Natalie up. What about me?
Darcy walked out the door.
“What’s his problem?” I asked.
“I think he’s still a little mad at his mom for staying during the blizzard,” Natalie shrugged. “But I’m just guessing.”
“What can I do for you girls?” The girl at the counter asked. I believe her name was Paige.
“We need Valentine’s Day gifts,” Natalie and I said together. We laughed.
“What type of Valentine’s Day gifts? For your mother or that boy?” Paige asked.
“Was Darcy looking at anything in particular?” I joked.
“Shut up, Virginia!” Natalie cried.
The bell to the store rang and Emily and Timmy walked into the store.
“Hey Timmy,” I said. “Hi Emily.”
Emily looked horrible. She had on a vest and a halo ring to keep her back in place. She also looked like she was in a lot of pain.
“Hi,” Emily grumbled back.
“What can I get for you?” Paige asked.
“A box of chocolates,” Timmy said picking one up.
“Are you going to the ball tomorrow?” I asked Emily.
“I have to. Grandma is over the hill with excitement. Grandpa is going into Pittsfield that night. I wanted to go with him but he says I can’t,” Emily complained.
“Well before the ball after school, a bunch of us girls are going over to the B&B to get our hair done, and our nails done, you know the ‘girl thing’. Would you like to join us?” I asked.
What was I saying? The look on Natalie’s face said it all. This was a huge mistake.
“Hair done? Do you know how much pain I am standing here?” Emily asked sounding really mad.
“You can still do your nails,” I said really wanting to stop myself. “And your Grandma can come to.”
“Fine,” Emily said. “But only because I want to look pretty. Come on TIMMY!”
“Coming!” Timmy shouted walking towards the door. He smiled at us.
“Bye,” Timmy said walking out the door.
“What have you done?” Natalie asked after Timmy left.
“I don’t know,” I sighed.
“Ms. Natalie Baldwin! Is the Algebra lesson too hard for you? Why don’t you come up here and tell the class why you just burst out crying?” Ms. O’Donnell asked.
I looked up from my Algebra lesson. Since I was way back in the back I couldn’t hear Natalie crying but Leo had been snickering for a couple of minutes so I guess he heard her. Despicable young man.
“Um, seven years ago,” Natalie said getting up. “My dad died on this day.”
I felt a pain in my heart. I knew how it was to lose my father.
“Oh, Natalie…..,” Ms. O’Donnell started. I rolled my eyes on the inside. Why was she so nice to her only?
The bell rang and Natalie ran out of the room. I jumped from my seat as fast as I could. Darcy looked like he didn’t know what to do.
“I got it,” I said running past him.
“Natalie!” I called. She was pretty fast. Natalie stopped and it took me a second to catch up with her.
“Are you ok?” I asked.
“No,” Natalie cried. Tears started to splash down her face.
“Let’s step into my office,” I said. My office was in the cafeteria. It was this table in the back where people changed during the school plays. There was a curtain there for privacy.
“Wow,” Natalie said looking around.
“Cool, I know,” I said.
“Do you want to talk about your dad?” I asked.
“He was from England,” Natalie started.
“My dad was born and raised in Virginia,” I said.
“My dad was killed in a car accident,” Natalie sighed. She looked very sad when she said this.
“My parents took a bus to Richmond,” I said. “They had to pick up a part for our tractor. The bus driver fell asleep and crashed.”
It felt a little good to get that off my chest. I haven’t talked to anyone since my father’s death.
“I’m sorry,” Natalie said.
“I guess we know how each other feels,” I sighed. “What did your dad smell like?”
“Pine Needles,” Natalie laughed. “It was his favorite body wash.”
“My dad always smelled like goat, sweat, and manure,” I laughed.
I pictured my father. Tall, strong, and well built. I could see him walking towards the house after all the work was done but as he got closer he faded. Then I couldn’t see him anymore all I could do was smell him.
“Manure?” Natalie asked breaking into my thoughts. I nodded and we started to laugh.
“Were you thinking about him when you started to cry?” I asked after we stopped laughing. Natalie nodded.
“I was remembering the last time I saw him,” Natalie said. She looked like she was going to cry.
“I can’t really remember the last time I saw my parents. I try so hard to but I just can’t remember,” I said. I tried to think of them at this moment but Natalie sighed and started talking.
“But it was so weird,” Natalie started. “When I stopped thinking about it, I looked at Darcy and my stomach seemed to flutter and my heart started to beat like crazy.”
I gave her a sly smile. I knew it. I knew it. I knew. Natalie liked Darcy.
“What?” Natalie asked. I thought of the perfect thing to say.
“Admit it Natalie,” I said. “You like him.”
“I do not!” Natalie shouted.
Some people need more of a push than others.
“Just stop it, Natalie,” I said. “Everybody in Florida knows it. Your own mother knows it.”
“She doesn’t think I like Darcy,” Natalie denied.
“Sure,” I said rolling her eyes. “Talk to me when you’re ready to send him a Valentine.”
“I do no……” Natalie started but stopped.
I smirked at her but she was too lost on thought to notice it.
“Oh! I don’t know!” Natalie shouted throwing up her hands. “When I first got here Darcy wasn’t the nicest person to me but lately he’s been…..”
“He’s been what?” I asked.
I tried not squirm in my seat but I felt myself wiggling. It’s a bad habit that I always do when I’m close to finding out a good juicy secret.
“He’s been kind,” Natalie said. “He’s not mad at me anymore for breaking his knee. He’s just….UGH!”
“I think he likes you,” I said. Natalie snorted.
“Emily Stewart sticks to him like glue,” Natalie snorted. It took all that was in me not to tell her that Darcy liked her a lot and show her the Valentine he was thinking about getting her.
“Sometimes glue falls off,” I said instead. Natalie smiled.
“I have the perfect Valentine,” I said getting my box from under the table. “Have you ever read Pride and Prejudice?”
“I’ve seen the movie,” Natalie said. I sighed the movie is as good as you can do in two hours but at least she was familiar with the story/
“You’re lucky,” I said pulling out a Valentine.
“In what way?” Natalie asked as I pushed the Valentine towards her.
“Darcy!!! You know as in Mr. Darcy?” I shouted. Natalie sighed.
“Give him this Valentine, Elizabeth,” I urged. If she didn’t do this I might blow about how much Darcy liked her.
“How much?” Natalie asked.
I clapped my hands and squealed. What? I love romance.
“I charge a dollar just like that other Valentine seller,” I said adding disgust to the word ‘other’.
“You like him,” Natalie said pulling out a dollar from her backpack.
My mouth fell open and Natalie laughed. That’s when I realized that it was a joke. But my mouth was still open as she gave me her money and I gave her the Valentine.
Mrs. Baldwin was standing there and was carrying a picnic basket.
“Ms. O’Donnell called me about what happened,” Mrs. Baldwin said.
“I didn’t mean to burst out crying,” Natalie started but Mrs. Baldwin put up her hand.
“Come on,” Mrs. Baldwin said taking Natalie’s hand. “Ms. O’Donnell has given you the rest of the day off.”
“But Darcy….” Natalie started. I tried not to smirk. And she says she doesn’t like him.
“You can see Darcy at home,” Mrs. Baldwin said. She had that look on her face that said ‘Where has my baby gone? She’s liking boys.’
Natalie and her mother left and soon after that Emily Stewart walked into my office.
“How can I help you?” I asked.
“I hear you’re selling Valentines,” Emily said looking at me.
“Yup,” I nodded.
“I need two Valentines. One for Darcy and one for Nelson Drew,” Emily said. Her eyes got dreamy. Sorry sister, Darcy doesn’t like you.
“What type of Valentines do you want friendship, love, secret crush?” I asked.
Emily thought for a minute.
“Secret crush. No, just crush. He’s and idiot if he doesn’t think I like him,” Emily said. I pulled out a Valentine.
“This will do,” Emily said. “I need a friendship one too. Any ole one will do.”
I pulled out just ‘any ole one’ and Emily gave me two dollars.
“Nice doing business with you,” Emily said. She flipped her long red hair and walked out of my office.
At least that altercation didn’t last long.
“Hey, Virginia,” Nelson said walking into my office.
“Hey, Nelson,” I said. My stomach rumbled. I had thrown my lunch in the trash the moment I was out of Aunt Jane’s sight. I didn’t get up early enough to make breakfast so Aunt Jane made it. I swear that woman cannot cook.
“Want half of my sandwich?” Nelson asked sitting down.
“Would you?” I asked. Nelson nodded and tore his sandwich in two. He gave me one half.
“Oh this is so delicious,” I said munching it.
“I bet you’re hungry. Aunt Jane is a miserable cook but no one has the heart to tell her,” Nelson said.
“Somebody better tell her soon or I’ll starve to death,” I joked.
“Why don’t you tell her,” Nelson said taking a swig of his water. I laughed.
“Are you friends with Emily Stewart?” I asked. “She got you a Valentine.”
“She did?” Nelson asked. His eyes lighted up. I knew that dangerous light all too well.
“You like Emily STEWART?” I asked. “THE Emily Stewart. The one that sticks to Darcy Edwards like glue. The woman with long red hair and brown eyes. The one who is the younger sister of Timmy Stewart? The one who is most mean, arrogant, and rude girl in Florida?”
“I don’t know any other Emily Stewarts,” Nelson said.
“How could you like her? She has a massive crush on Darcy,” I said.
“But Darcy doesn’t like her,” Nelson said.
“How do you know that?” I asked.
“I share a room with him,” Nelson shrugged. “Darcy doesn’t like her so I thought that maybe if she sees how much I like her she’ll like me.”
“Trust me,” I said. “That’s not how love works.”
“Do you have a Valentine for like secret crushes?” Nelson asked. I pulled out a Valentine that was just like the one Darcy was thinking about giving to Natalie.
“Perfect,” Nelson said smiling a silly smile.
Oh no. He was in love with a Stewart.
“Class dismissed!” Ms. O’Donnell shouted. “Leo, Darcy, and Virginia I would like to speak to you for a minute.”
Why would she want to talk to me and that other boy?
“Yes, Ms. O’Donnell?” Darcy asked. He was in pain, I could tell. Ms. O’Donnell had no heart.
“North Adams and Florida can coming together to have a Valentine’s Day ball. I’m one of the people in charge of planning it and we’re having the toughest time coming up with a theme and Valentine’s Day is in a week!” Ms. O’Donnell said.
I sighed and looked at Darcy. This woman was……………
“DARCY!” I shouted jumping up and down.
“What?” Darcy asked moving back.
“No. No, not you!” I shouted. “Mr. Darcy, Elizabeth, Jane, and Mr. Bingley. We’ll have a Pride and Prejudice ball. We’ll have a contest for Mr. and Mrs. Darcy and Mr. and Mrs. Bingley! Everyone will wear clothes that age period and we’ll do dances from that age period it will lots of fun!”
“I like it,” Leo said. He didn’t look like he liked it.
I rolled my eyes. Darcy looked at him like he was crazy.
“I LOVE it!” Ms. O’Donnell shouted. “Time to get my Jane Austin on!”
I smiled. Maybe Ms. O’Donnell isn’t so so bad.
First I would like to apologize. I didn’t know how hard this contest would be. So, I’ve decided to give out hints!
Jaci and Timmy– Hint: Scripture
Abby and Zach– Hint: Proposal
Natalie and Darcy– Hint: Pride and Prejudice
Virginia and Leo– Hint: Roses are Red
Nelson and Emily- Hint: Crushed
Also the person who sent the Valentine they receive, they sent a Valentine to. The original post can be found here. Please contact me if the contest is still too hard. The winner and PRIZE will be annouced on Valentine’s Day! Good Luck!
The bell rang for lunch and I was about to get up when a boy walked over to Leo.
“I heard that you’ve started selling the Valentines,” The boy said.
“Yup,” Leo said smiling.
“I’d like to buy three,” The boy said.
“That will be three dollars,” Leo said opening his desk and handing him three Valentines.
“Thanks,” The boy said handing him three dollars.
“What kind of Valentines do you sell?” I asked interested.
“See for yourself,” Leo said with a smirk on his face. He handed me one from his desk.
Roses are red
Violets are blue
I don’t know what to say around you
“Don’t tell me that you’re selling this junk!” I shouted outraged.
“Excuse me?” Leo asked.
“If I were to receive this Valentine I would be crushed!” I shouted getting up from my chair. “This Valentine is despicable!”
“Despicable?” Leo asked getting up from his chair.
“Despicable,” I repeated. I stormed into the cafeteria.
“Look at this! Look at this!” I shouted shoving a Valentine in Natalie’s face.
“What is it?” Natalie asked harshly. She didn’t look mad but she sure sounded mad.
“This is so rude! So ridiculous! I would punch the boy who gave me THIS piece of junk!” I screamed.
Everyone at that lunch table looked at me like I was crazy. Especially Emily Stewart.
“Calm down,” Natalie said snatching the Valentine out of my hand. She read it.
“What’s wrong with that?” Natalie asked. She had scrunched up look on her face.
“I don’t know what to say around you? What kind of cheesy line is that? It might as well read ‘Roses are red. Violets are blue. I really don’t want to give a Valentine to you.’” I said sitting down.
“I don’t see what’s wrong with it,” Darcy said standing up for Natalie. I gave him a look. Boys.
“This is being marketed as a Valentine to give to someone who you really don’t want to give a Valentine too! Dozens of poor girls are going to receive this terrible Valentine!” I shouted.
Ok so I didn’t really know if this was being marketed as a Valentine to give to someone you didn’t want to give a Valentine too, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was!
“VIRGINIA!” Aunt Jane screamed running into the lunch room waving a brown bag.
“What now?” I muttered. I was starting to wonder if she was a little bit more than slightly crazy.
“I didn’t give you a lunch before you took off,” Aunt Jane huffed. “I’m sorry.”
She gave it to me. I took one look and decided this woman could not make a PB&J sandwich.
“Thanks,” I said taking it anyway. Aunt Jane smiled.
“Somebody get their Valentine’s Day out of the way?” Aunt Jane asked picking up the disgusting Valentine.
“No,” I sneered. “I just found out that my desk partner is selling these!”
“Then sell them back,” Aunt Jane said.
“Huh?” Everyone at the table including me asked.
“You make Valentines bigger and better,” Aunt Jane said.
“That’s a wonderful idea!” I shouted. “I’ll beat him at his own game!” Aunt Jane nodded.
She may be more than slightly crazy but her crazy ideas can be good.
This was war.
It took me all night to make a bunch of Valentines. I made some for friendship. I made lots for romance. I made a big mistake letting my little sister cut out hearts. By the way she cut them you would think she didn’t know what a heart was!
“VIRGINIA! ANDREW! RACHEL!” Aunt Jane shouted the next afternoon. The three of us ran down the steps.
“What’s wrong, Aunt Jane?” Rachel asked.
“There’s been a terrible accident on the Mohawk Trail. They want Andrew to go down and help out,” Aunt Jane said trying to catch her breath.
“Who was hurt?” I asked grabbing my coat.
“Zach Davis and Darcy Edwards,” Aunt Jane said trying to put her arm through Rachel’s coat’s armhole.
“Who’s Zach Davis?” I asked handing Aunt Jane her coat.
“He’s Mr. Stewart’s nephew. Trust me they do not get along,” Aunt Jane said picking up the car keys.
“How bad is it?” Andrew asked as we hopped into the car.
“They aren’t dead but Zach is badly hurt,” Aunt Jane said going way over the speed limit.
“Aunt Jane, slow down! I haven’t even put my seatbelt on!” I screamed. Aunt Jane didn’t seem to hear me. We got to the sight of the crash in less than two minutes.
“Don’t ever do that kids!” Aunt Jane shouted hopping out of the car.
I stumbled out. I felt like puking. I saw a sight. Natalie was being loaded onto an ambulance.
“What’s wrong with Natalie?” I asked Mrs. Baldwin.
“She fell,” Mrs. Baldwin said. “Nothing to worry about. She wasn’t in the accident.”
Andrew walked down the hill and started helping.
“What happened?” I asked.
“We don’t know yet. They haven’t tried talking to them. Zach is unconscious and Darcy is delirious,” Mrs. Baldwin said. “Poor Natalie.”
Mrs. Baldwin walked away before I could ask her what that last part meant.
“I have the strangest feeling that a certain Stewart dispute had something to do with this,” Aunt Jane said under her breath.
And for a strange reason even thou I knew nothing about Stewart disputes I had a feeling it did too.
I walked into the North Adams hospital with two Get Well balloons and one box full of Valentines. I planned on selling my first Valentine today.
“You’re my first friend visitor,” Darcy said as I walked into the room. I smiled.
“I have to admit this isn’t only just a social call,” I said pulling a chair up close to his bed.
“I’ll buy a Valentine or two from you,” Darcy laughed.
“So who do you need?” I asked.
“I need a Valentine for my mother, Emily, Regina, Jaci, and Abby,” Darcy said. “And maybe one for little Megan.”
“You don’t want to give a Valentine to Natalie?” I asked a little outraged.
“I do don’t get me wrong but…………,” Darcy started. “Can I tell you a secret?”
“Sure,” I shrugged. I tried not to squirm in my seat.
“Well one Christmas morning I left a present for Natalie under her little Charlie Brown tree but I didn’t put my name on it. Ever since I’ve been sending her anonymous gifts,” Darcy said not quite looking at my face. “Natalie calls me her Secret Santa but she doesn’t know its me.”
“How romantic!” I cried. “I have the perfect Valentine!”
I went rummaging through my box and found the Valentine I was thinking about.
“I don’t know,” Darcy said reading it. “What if she doesn’t feel the same way? I mean……”
“Don’t worry. I’ll take care of that,” I smiled.
Darcy looked at me strangely.
“Tell you what. I have to stop by and see Zach. I’ll go visit him and come back. It will give you time to think about it,” I said. “But don’t worry. I know Natalie likes you that way. I just do. I’m not just a farm girl you know? I also do the occasionally matchmaking!”
Darcy laughed as I walked out the room with my box and Zach’s balloon.
“Can I see Zach Davis?” I asked a nurse.
“Do you know him?” The nurse asked.
“I’ve got a balloon for him. I also live in Florida,” I said. “My name is Virginia Powers. I live with my Aunt Jane Powers.”
“I’ll ask him,” The nurse said walking towards his room.
“And tell him I’ve got Valentines!” I shouted.
The nurse came back a minute later.
“He says he doesn’t know you but he knows your Aunt so he said you can come in,” The nurse said. I smiled and walked down the hall.
“Hello!” I said walking into the room.
“Hi,” Zach said weakly.
“I’m afraid we haven’t met,” I said putting the box of Valentine’s down. “I’m Virginia Powers.”
“Zach Davis,” He smiled. “I only let you in because she said you had Valentines.”
I smiled and laughed.
“Yup,” I said shaking the box. “What do you need?”
“I’m afraid someone is trying to kill me,” Zach said.
“And you want to send them a Valentine?” I asked.
“No!” Zach shouted. “I want a Valentine for Abby.”
“Abby Matthews?” I asked. “The one that lives in Boston?”
“That’s the one,” Zach said. “If there’s one thing I want to do before I die is marry that girl.”
“She didn’t mention a boyfriend,” I said digging through my box.
“That’s because I’m an old boyfriend,” Zach sighed. “I left her but I sure didn’t forget her.”
“If you broke up with her why in the world would she want to marry you?” I asked.
“I knew her back in college and well she left me that time and well I guess we’re even now,” Zach said. He had a smile on his face.
“I think I’m going to have to make a special Valentine for this one,” I said putting a lid on the box.
The nurse that had helped me walked into the room with a syringe in her hand.
“Flu shot,” The nurse said. “Doctor’s orders.”
Zach quickly jumped out of his hospital bed. His legs were really shaky. He started to run but the Nurse stuck the syringe in his arm. She ran after him wanting to complete the job.
I had a feeling Zach wasn’t kidding when he said he thought someone wanted to kill him.
Valentine’s Day is coming soon and I decided that this is the perfect time to have our first ever contest!
Contest Info:Valentine’s Day is about two weeks away and love is in the air in Florida, Massachusetts! But a couple of people are too afraid to tell their feelings to the person they like so they sent anonymous Valentines! Who likes who? Its up to you to find out!
So what you have to do is figure out who sent the Valentine and to who. Comment your answers but chose wisely you only get one chance! It should look like this: Valentine X was given to Blank from Blank.
All of the Valentines!
My heads in the clouds
My heart’s in my throat
I’m walking on air
Handing you this note!
Love is patient.
Love does not envy or boast.
Love is not arrogant or rude.
Love never fails.
Love never rejoices at wrongdoing.
Not irritable or resentful.
Love does not insist on its own way.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love is kind so be my Valentine!
Take all my love.
Take all my kisses.
But there better be a ring.
If you want me to be your Mrs.!
I have just one Valentine’s Day wish.
That you’ll be my Darcy and I’ll be your Elizabeth!
So what do you say?
Will you make my Valentine’s Day?
Roses are Red.
Violets are blue.
I never know what to say around you!
I’d like to convince myself there’s no one left to ask.
But the truth is I only want you!
I know we’re young.
I know its soon.
But I think I’m in love with you!
There is no fear in love, but perfect love cast out fear.
So I’m just going to say it.
Please be my Valentine till the end of time!
Valentine G (two people receive this Valentine)
Did you know?
I’ve crushed on you.
Since long ago.
So here’s my heart.
And here’s my soul.
I think its time you should know.
Will you be?
Can you be?
Could you think of me?
Roses are Red.
Violets are blue.
I never know what to say around you!
I don’t want to blurt it but since its Valentine’s Day.
I think I should tell you that I like you in that special kind of way!
Left you once.
Lost you twice.
Now its the third time.
So I’m not going to take any chances.
Please be my Valentine and my wife.
Who ever gets them all right (or gets the most right) wins the contest! I will announce the winner and PRIZE on Valentine’s Day! Good Luck!
A red truck pulled up in Aunt Jane’s driveway. I ran to the window to see who it was.
Timmy Stewart got out of the truck. He opened the passenger door and Jaci Matthews got out.
“Virginia, it’s not polite to spy,” Aunt Jane said when she saw me peeping out the window.
“Timmy Stewart is with Jaci Matthews,” I said.
“What is she doing with that boy?” Aunt Jane asked looking out the window. I laughed on the inside.
Jaci saw me in the window and waved. I felt my cheeks go red.
Timmy rang the doorbell and Aunt Jane opened it.
“Timmy Stewart, what are you doing here?” Aunt Jane asked as she let them in.
“I thought that maybe I could show Andrew around the high school. He is going to Drury High School right?” Timmy asked.
“He is,” Aunt Jane said. “How….thoughtful.”
“I’m taking a standardized test!” Jaci shouted.
“Standardized test?” I asked taking some eggs out of the refrigerator.
“Mother homeschooled me so I never got my high school diploma. Father says I have to take standardized test to get a high school diploma. If I don’t pass he’ll enroll me next year,” Jaci said. “Timmy’s driving me.”
“I’ll go get Andrew and tell him that you’ve offered to show him around,” Aunt Jane said walking up the steps.
“So how’s Florida so far?” Timmy asked me as I made the eggs.
“All right I guess,” I answered.
“Do you like chickens?” Rachel asked Timmy as she got out the oatmeal. Jaci and Timmy burst out laughing.
“What’s so funny?” Rachel asked.
“Timmy used to be a chicken shooter,” Jaci laughed. Rachel looked horrified.
“I don’t shot chickens anymore,” Timmy said ruffling her hair. I took the eggs off the stuff and took the oatmeal from Rachel and started making it.
“Why did you shot chickens in the first place?” Rachel asked.
“That’s a very good question,” Timmy said. Andrew walked down the steps.
“Aunt Jane says that you’re going to show me around the high school,” Andrew said as I handed him his sandwich.
“I FORGOT TO MAKE SOME BREAKFAST!” Aunt Jane hollered running down the steps with Caroline in her arms.
“I got it Aunt Jane,” I said making Rachel a sandwich.
“Ya’ll better get going,” Aunt Jane said looking at the clock.
“Buy four chickens,” Timmy said as Andrew and Jaci walked out of the house. “I didn’t give you two for Darlene.”
He closed the door.
“He killed YOUR chickens?” Rachel asked a little outraged. Aunt Jane just stared at the door in awe.
“Class,” Ms. O’Donnell said in a disgusted voice. “This is Virginia Powers.”
“Hello, Virginia,” The class said.
“And this is Natalie Baldwin,” Ms. O’Donnell said in a nicer tone. “Both will be joining our class today. Most of you know Natalie but Virginia is new to Florida. Why don’t you tell us about yourself?”
“Well I’m from Virginia,” I stared. Ms. O’Donnell looked like somebody was stabbing her in the back.
“I’m a farm girl,” I said. “I have an older brother who is in high school and two younger sisters.”
“Thank you Virginia that will be all,” Ms. O’Donnell said. “Natalie, would you like to tell the class a little bit about yourself?”
“Well I moved here about a month ago. I live at the Sunshine B&B. I have a younger sister Megan and will have two steps sisters as soon as my mother marries Steve Matthews,” Natalie said. “I love Christmas as my name implies.”
I had no idea how her name implied that.
“Thank you, Natalie,” Ms. O’Donnell said. “The two of you may chose your seats.”
There were two empty seats, one in the back and one in the front. I loved being in the front row. The seat that was in the front row was next to Darcy Edwards. I knew that Natalie would want to be desk partners with Darcy.
I sighed on the inside and winked at her. She gave me a surprised expression. I walked towards the back and caught a glimpse of relief in Darcy’s face.
“Leo Logan,” My desk partner said offering his hand.
“Virginia Powers,” I said shaking it.
Hush Caroline, Everything is gonna be fine
Even thou its night I know the light is not far away.
So let your dreams take you to a faraway place
But keep in mind, we’ll get there someday
If we gotta fly, I’ll grow wings
We’ll just take our time and let God do all the healing
If we gotta go by boat
God will calm the sea
Hush, Caroline, go to sleep
My baby sister Caroline stared at me. She gave me one of her sweet smiles. She wasn’t falling asleep. I had already sung her several times but she wasn’t falling asleep.
I heard footsteps on the steps. For a second I thought it was Momma. I tried not to cry as I looked at Caroline. She looked so much like Momma.
Aunt Lisa opened the door. She stood in the doorway and smiled at me.
“Don’t worry about Caroline. I’ll put her to sleep,” Aunt Lisa smiled. “Go downstairs. Your Uncle Danny wants to talk to you.”
I gave her to my Aunt Lisa. I wondered why Uncle Danny would want to talk to me. I heart wrenching thought came to mind as I walked down the steps. Uncle Danny and Aunt Lisa we’re sending my brother, two sisters, and I away.
Nonsense, Virginia! I thought in my head. Uncle Danny knew how much I loved living on his farm. His farm was so much like that one Papa and Momma had run before they died. This was the fourth relative’s home my siblings and I had lived in since our parents died five months ago. We’ve been here for two months so far and I can’t possible think of any reason Uncle Danny and Aunt Lisa would want us out of their house.
As I walked into the family room I thought of a reason. Their children. They had four children of their own. What if four more was too much to handle?
“Where’s Rachel and Andrew?” Uncle Danny asked.
“Upstairs,” I answered sitting down on the couch. “Probably getting ready for bed.”
“Rachel! Andrew!” Uncle Danny called. My older brother Andrew and my younger sister Rachel quickly came down the steps.
“Yes, Uncle Danny?” Rachel asked sitting in my lap.
“Now, I know you kids have been shifted around quite a bit these last few months,” Uncle Danny said. I looked at his hands. His knuckles were shaking. Papa told me that whenever Uncle Danny’s knuckles shook that meant he had to do something he didn’t want to do.
I nodded and added, “But I like it here.”
A sad look crept into Uncle Danny’s face. I felt mine fall rapidly.
“I’m sure you’ve heard about your Aunt Jane,” Uncle Danny said getting out a photo album. “She’s your dad’s older sister. She’s my younger sister.”
“Yes, we’ve heard about Aunt Jane,” Rachel said. “Papa said he thought she was slightly crazy.”
Uncle Danny gave a chuckle.
“She was always coming up with crazy ideas and getting in trouble for them!” Uncle Danny said taking a picture of Aunt Jane out.
“So what about Aunt Jane?” Andrew asked impatiently.
“When she was twenty-two she moved away up North. She had gotten into Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in North Adams, Massachusetts. She moved to Florida, Massachusetts a town less than thirty minutes away from North Adams and she’s lived there ever since,” Uncle Danny said. “She studied language. She didn’t want to be a farm girl. Mom and Pops were disappointed but they encouraged her to follow her heart.”
I wish he would just get to his point. I heard all of this before. Traitor. Once a farm girl, always a farm girl.
“I got a phone call from her two weeks ago. She asked how you were doing,” Uncle Danny said pausing.
“Is she coming for a visit?” Rachel asked.
“No,” Uncle Danny said. “Its kinda like the other way around.”
“We’re going to visit her. But it’s the middle of the school year!” Andrew shouted. I rolled my eyes on the inside. Andrew loved going to school. I did not.
“You’re not going to be visiting her,” Uncle Danny said. “Your aunt Jane has decided that she wants to adopt you. She said, ‘Andrew, Virginia, Rachel, and Caroline all four of those little angels!’”
It took me a minute to let all of this sink in.
“What!” I shouted. “But…But…she lives in Massachusetts. That’s like a million miles from here!”
“Not quite a million. It’s not even a thousand miles from here. It’s a little more than ten hours from here,” Uncle Danny said.
“Why would she want to adopt us?” I asked outraged.
“I don’t know,” Uncle Danny said. “She’s family. Maybe she wants to do something for her brother.”
“Well I don’t want to go!” I cried. Uncle Danny sighed.
“You leave tomorrow and that’s that. Now go upstairs and get ready for bed. Your bus leaves at nine.”
Wait, did he just say bus?
I sat on the steps determined never to leave Uncle Danny’s farm. If they tried to make me it would be against my will and that would be kidnapping.
“Virginia, what are you doing?” Rachel asked me when she walked down the steps in the morning.
“I’m not leaving and that’s that,” I said recalling Uncle Danny’s words from last night.
“Virginia! How did you get my handcuffs?” Andrew cried when he saw that I had handcuffed myself to the stair’s railing.
“I just walked into your room,” I shrugged.
“Boy, is Aunt Lisa and Uncle Danny going to be mad,” Rachel said sitting next to me.
“It will prove a point. I don’t want to leave and I’m not going to leave. Nobody is going to make me,” I huffed.
“You’re crazy,” Andrew said. “I think you and Aunt Jane will get along just fine.”
I stuck my tongue out at Andrew and Andrew walked down the steps.
“Baby Caroline is all ready to go…..Virginia, what are you doing?” Aunt Lisa said when she came down the steps.
“I’m not going,” I said flatly.
“Oh, yes you are!” Aunt Lisa shouted. She handed Caroline to Rachel and walked up the steps. She gave back down with a lock picking kit. She picked the lock and pushed me down the steps.
“Virginia, I love you but you are leaving today,” Aunt Lisa said handing me an egg and oatmeal sandwich.
“But I’m a farm girl not a small town girl!” I cried.
“Why can’t you be a farm girl in a small town?” Aunt Lisa asked handing sandwiches to Rachel and Andrew.
“Because it doesn’t work that way,” I said. What? It was the best I could come up with!
“Who’s reading to go to Florida, Massachusetts?” Uncle Danny asked coming down the stairs with our suitcases.
“Are you coming?” I asked.
“You didn’t think I was going to let three children and a baby ride a bus all on their own did you?” Uncle Danny asked.
“Here’s your sandwich, hon,” Aunt Lisa said handing Uncle Danny his sandwich. I wanted to laugh. Uncle Danny’s hands we’re full with luggage.
“I’m sorry, deer!” Aunt Lisa cried. She let Uncle Danny but the luggage in the car and came back inside for his sandwich.
“Love you all!” Aunt Lisa called as we got in the car. I felt like screaming back, “Well if you loved us then you would let us stay!”
As Uncle Danny’s farm faded away I muttered so low I’m positive no one else heard me, “You can take the girl off the farm but you can’t take the farm off of the girl.”
“Wait that doesn’t sound right,” I muttered smacking myself on the head.
It was cold and some white stuff was falling from the sky.
“Snow!” Rachel cried outing her nose on the bus station window. I tried not to scream. Aunt Jane was late.
“OUT OF MY WAY! I’M LATE!”
I turned to the voice and saw a red haired woman running like her life defended on it. I looked at Caroline who was in my arms. Please don’t tell me that THIS was my Aunt Jane.
“Sorry, kids!” Aunt Jane shouted. “I’m so sorry! I plum forgot! I’m your Aunt Jane Powers.”
Aunt Jane’s jacket was covered with snow. She had sandals on which I found strange.
“Hello,” Rachel said smiling.
“Aren’t your feet freezing?” I asked not being able to get over the whole sandal thing.
“I put on the wrong shoes! I wanted to get a quick bit at the Sunshine B&B. I was in a hurry to leave because I also wanted to have a talk with Fowler Stewart about his grandson Timmy Stewart. That is all worked out now,” Aunt Jane said. There was a look of wonder when she said the words Timmy Stewart.
“How was your trip?” Aunt Jane asked picking up our suitcases and walking towards the exit.
“Horrible,” I said remembering, “Somebody coughed and sneezed all over me.”
“Gross!” Aunt Jane cried shaking her head. “There’s nothing like a sick person to ruin a perfectly good bus ride. You’ll probably want to take a nice long hot shower when you get home.”
It would take me another ten hours to get home and I needed a shower now.
“This is your car?” Andrew asked pointing to the car Aunt Jane had stopped at.
I was wondering the same thing and not because her car was a Ford Explorer.
Her license plate was FARMGURL.
That was far from true.
Ok, so maybe not TOO TOO far from true.
Aunt Jane had chickens in her backyard.
And at this moment she ordering a pig, a goat, and a lamb.
“I just love animals!” Aunt Jane shouted as she placed her order. We hadn’t even been here one day and she was ordering farm animals.
There was a knock at the door.
“Virginia, could you get that please?” Aunt Jane asked. She started to chuckle. I went to open the door.
“Hello,” A tall brown haired man said when I opened the door. As far as I could tell there were thirteen other people with him.
“And who might you be?” I asked with my hands on my hips.
“I’m Steve Matthews,” The man said. “Who might you be?”
“Virginia Powers,” I said taking my hands off my hips. “Farm girl.”
A short brown haired girl that I assumed was Mr. Matthew’s daughter, smiled at me.
“Hello, Virginia, I’m Jaci Matthews,” The girl smiled. I nodded.
“Sunshine B&B clan….and Timmy,” Aunt Jane said walking up to the door. “Come in! Come in!”
“Sunshine B&B clan?” I asked as they walked into the door.
“We all live at the Sunshine B&B,” A boy with dark hair and blue eyes said. “Expect for Timmy.”
“So your name is Virginia?” A dirty blonde haired girl asked me. I nodded.
“Natalie Baldwin,” The girl said offering her hand. “Miami Girl.”
The Sunshine B&B clan laughed. Aunt Jane gave a faint chuckle. I had no idea why this was funny.
“Virginia, I think you and Natalie are going to get along. Natalie just moved here from Miami, Florida,” Aunt Jane said. I nodded.
“Oh! Where are my manors!” Aunt Jane shouted. “You’re probably wondering who all these people are. Virginia, meet Riley Baldwin. She’s Natalie’s mom and she’s engaged to Steve Matthews. He’s the tall guy. The short girl is his daughter Jaci. The tall auburn is his other daughter Abby. She doesn’t live at the B&B. She lives in Boston. Then there’s Darcy. He’s the black haired cutie. Timmy Stewart is the tall blonde one with a side bang. The little girl in Riley’s arms is Megan. She’s like two. The blonde girl is Regina Drew and the dirty blonde boy standing next to her is her twin brother Nelson Drew. The brown haired woman in the blue coat is Donna Edwards. She’s Darcy’s mother. The tall older looking lady is Mrs. Walters. The two other people or Mr. and Mrs. Drew. They’re Nelson and Regina’s parents. Oh and the baby boy in Mrs. Drew’s hands is Fred. The ice creams in the kitchen.”
“Ice cream?” I asked. Natalie snickered.
“We’re having an ice cream party! The whole town is invited!” Aunt Jane shouted.
“But it’s like seventeen degrees outside!” I shouted.
“That’s what I said,” Natalie laughed.
Soon a whole bunch of people from town poured into Aunt Jane’s house. I met some girl named Emily Stewart. She’s supposed to be Timmy’s sister but she’s nothing like him. Timmy seemed way nicer than Emily was. I heard their grandparents (the people who raise them) where there but I didn’t care to meet them.
My ice cream party wasn’t that bad and I almost let myself enjoy it up until I met the meanest woman in the world.
Ms. Shelby O’Donnell.
“Virginia, I would like you to meet your seventh grade teacher Shelby O’Donnell,” Aunt Jane said. Aunt Jane looked like she was praying hard about something.
“She’s scrawny,” Ms. O’Donnell said.
“Excuse me?” I asked.
“She’s tall but scrawny. She’s only said a couple of words and her Southern drawl annoys me,” Ms. O’Donnell said. “We’ll have to do something about that if she’s going to be in my class. Maybe we could put her Ms. Ross’s sixth grade class.”
“Excuse me?” I repeated.
“I’ll have to have to see how my teacher’s assistant and eighth grade teacher Diana Smith feels about her,” Ms. O’Donnell said. “DIANA!”
An older looking lady with graying brown hair walked up to Ms. O’Donnell.
“This is our new student,” Ms. O’Donnell said. “Speak.”
I looked at her strangely.
“I said speak, child!” Ms. O’Donnell shouted.
“Hi,” I said unsure what to say.
“Ugh! Her drawl is so very unbecoming. Wouldn’t you say so?” Ms. O’Donnell asked.
“Shelby,” Ms. Smith said. “Her drawl will not be a problem.”
“You fatten her up, Jane. She’s too scrawny,” Ms. O’Donnell said. She looked at me with disgust and walked away. Ms. Smith smiled at me and walked away.
I refused to have her for a teacher. I wondered if Andrew had anymore handcuffs.
Coming Soon: Farm Girl
“You can take the girl off the farm but you can’t take the farm off of the girl……Wait that doesn’t sound right.”
Meet Virginia; a farm loving girl who never wants to leave her Uncle’s farm. And against her will she has to move to Florida, Massachusetts to live with her slightly crazy Aunt Jane. Her brother and her sister don’t seem to care at all that their no longer ‘farm people’. But Florida’s not too too bad. With her Aunt’s crazy ideas, hanging out at the Sunshine B&B, a mysterious noise coming from the B&B’s attic, and the occasional match making, a farm girl could get used to this.