By Tessa McDermid
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Her skin seemed to reflect the bright colors of the flowers, and his breath caught in his throat. She was so beautiful. He had to get away so he could think clearly. He stumbled onto the path and started walking in the opposite direction. When she cal ed out his name in a dismayed voice, he didn't stop, breaking into a run as he left the path and entered an unplowed field. He final y slowed near a clump of trees, leaning his head against the nearest one, gulping in the fresh air. Stil trying to catch his breath, he heard her footsteps behind him.
Yes, you are different. But I've never kissed a man like I just kissed you, Frank Robertson, or felt any desire to do so. Do you have any idea what the last three days have been like? I didn't know if you'd return. " She tossed her head, the curls that had been loosened by their kisses fluttering around her face. "I don't want to live without you, Frank. " He grabbed her wrists. "You can't love me, Marian. " Her lips curved upward and she leaned toward him. " Her insistent command pushed him to the brink.
Her expression softened a bit when she smiled at him, and emboldened by that approval, he launched into his sales pitch, bringing out each item with a practiced hand. She nodded, listening careful y, before final y settling on several bolts of sturdy cloth. He gathered up the rest of his merchandise and slid it back into his case. She pul ed a smal purse out of her pocket and slowly counted out the coins before handing the stack to him. He nudged the coins with his thumb as he checked the amount.
Family Stories by Tessa McDermid