Whisper In The Wind (Chapter 2, page 1 of 6)

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Chapter 2

Caitlin stepped into the den and put her hands on her hips. Everywhere she looked she saw piles of papers, stacks of magazines, and file folders. She contemplated leaving the overwhelming mess for another day, perhaps another lifetime. Her granddaddy had been a packrat. Every weekend she offered to help him clean, but he said, sternly, "No. I may need it someday." With a large sigh she moved towards the desk. She slumped against the desk as she looked at the daunting stacks in front of her. "I'm going outside."

The blue Virginia sky with sun shining bright called to her, but silence overtook the beauty in the day. She found no joy in the one place that had always offered fun, life, and support. She perched herself on the porch swing, her long legs crossed on the weathered seat, and stared at the 1-1/2 story white farmhouse with green shutters. It seemed just yesterday she sat here with her granddaddy, reminiscing about the past and discussing the future.

Was it only last weekend that he seemed extra tired? He sat here staring off into the distance as if he were looking for someone. She believed he was searching for Emmaline, but Caitlin refused to admit it. That would mean he was ready to join his one true love. Only Caitlin was not ready to let him go. With that thought, she returned to Richmond. Within twenty-four hours Garrett had called with the news.

Her hand touched the photo album that lay beside her. She picked it up and ran her long slender fingers over the leather cover. She knew these photographs like the back of her hand. How many days had she explored the past, imagining her grandparents and parents in their younger days? That is all she had now, photographs and memories, and an empty place in her heart. In time, she would remember her granddaddy with smiles and laughter, but not today. He had been her rock, her guiding force for thirty years; the one person who would always be there to listen and to offer advice. "Granddaddy, I don't know if I can do this alone?"

Tears filled her body, but she was too tired to let them fall. She stretched her legs out in front and pushed herself to standing. Now she leaned against the porch railing and stared into the azure sky, not a cloud in sight. "Granddaddy, I know you are with Grandma Emmaline, but I miss you. Why did you have to go now?" Caitlin sighed, her shoulders slumping forward. Teardrops fell onto the railing. "It's not fair to feel this way. Grandma and he were apart for fifteen years. It's time they found each other, but no matter how romantic and wonderful that sounds, it doesn't ease the pain of not having granddaddy right here to talk to." Uncontrolled sobs shook her body as she rested her forehead on the railing. Moments passed in silence, a suffocating silence that took a person's breath away. Caitlin picked her head up, took a deep breath, and wiped her cheeks dry. As she turned, she caught her reflection in the window and shook her head. "Thirty-years-old, kiddo. Where do you go from here?" She exhaled, but the desperation showed in her oval-shaped eyes and furrowed brow. "Time to get to work as Grandma Emmaline always said." With a large sigh, Caitlin pushed herself out of the seat and she went inside to tackle the contents of the den.

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