Rebecca Peters jogged home excitedly. The Olsens were coming for dinner. That summer she and Annie had concluded that Amelia liked Walter, the oldest Olsen boy. Rebecca was excited to see if Amelia would show any signs of liking him, if he was even there. Rebecca ran down the dirt road to her home. As she bounded up the stoop, she could hear the two families visiting. Mr. and Mrs. Olsen were talking with Mother and Father, twenty-year-old James visited with Joshua, seventeen-year-old Abigail visited with Annie, eight-year-old Aaron played with Matthew and Ben, and four-year old Mary played with Ruth, as Rebecca came through the door. They were all glad to see her. “Where are Rachel, Robert, Sarah, and Amelia?” Rebecca asked.
“They are outside,” Mother answered. “Could you go out and check on them?”
“Sure, Mother,” Rebecca answered. It was a beautiful day, and she gladly headed to the door.
“Let us go with you,” Annie’s cheerful voice rang, as she and Abigail came toward her. The three girls stepped outside, chatting as they walked toward the barn.
“So, how was work today?” Annie asked.
“Oh, it was great,” Rebecca answered.
“I am glad Walter could come, Abigail,” Annie said, smiling a fishy smile at Rebecca.
“Oh, Walter got to come?” Rebecca asked, surprised.
“Yes,” Abigail replied. “I am not sure how he got off work, but he did.”
“Maybe he did not have any work to do at the shop,” Annie proposed, smiling at Rebecca. Rebecca nodded back. As the girls stepped into the barn, the smell of hay greeted them. They heard laughter in one of the stalls. They found Robert, Sarah, and Rachel playing with the new puppies. ”We have named them all!” Rachel exclaimed. “The girls are Snowball and Smudges.”
“And the boys are Simon, Socks, and Samuel, but we call him Sam,” Sarah chimed in.
“Sarah, do not interrupt,” Rebecca chided.
After a while, Rebecca, Annie, and Abigail left the barn. “Let us not go inside,” Rebecca said, “It is too beautiful out here.” Annie and Abigail agreed. As they strolled around the yard, Rebecca wondered where Walter and Amelia were. The girls walked past the growing pumpkins, squash, and tomatoes. As they turned at the corner of the garden, they spotted Amelia and Walter sitting on the mossy rocks over by the big oak tree. They were chatting happily. The girls were surprised. Annie gasped, and then hid behind rows of tomatoes, motioning for the girls to join her.
“Rebecca, maybe we were right,” she whispered.
“Yes,” Rebecca whispered back, peeking at Amelia’s joyful expression.
“What is this?” Abigail questioned, raising an eyebrow. “Have you girls been matching them?”
“Yes, we have noticed that they took a special liking to each other lately, so we wondered if they were interested in each other,” Annie quickly explained.
“I did notice that he talks about Amelia more than any of you,” Abigail whispered. “I see what you mean.”
“I think they might be courting,” Rebecca said, louder than she should have. “We should leave now.” The girls agreed, and sneaked away, heading to the house to help with supper.
“Robert, Rachel, and Sarah were with the puppies, Mother,” Rebecca reported as she entered the house.
“Where is Amelia? She was supposed to help us with supper,” Mother said.
“Oh, she is with Walter. We can cover her share of the work,” Annie quickly responded.
“Very well, Annie,” Mother replied thoughtfully. Rebecca knew Mother must be thinking about Amelia and Walter. When supper was ready, everyone came inside.
Walter sat by Amelia during supper. He and Amelia kept giving each other looks during the meal. Rebecca, Annie, and Abigail kept smiling at each other. After supper it was time for the Olsens to leave.
“Goodbye, Amelia,” Walter said with a huge smile.
“Farewell, Walter,” Amelia replied, blushing heavily.
“Goodbye, Abigail,” Annie and Rebecca said quietly. “Keep an eye on him.”
“I will,” Abigail assured. “I wonder if this is really happening.”
“I think it is,” Rebecca said, smiling.
They all waved goodbye as the wagon rolled out of sight.
See complete list of chapters here.