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Lettuce… again?

on January 24, 2012

Previously On The Civil War Story: Kate’s marriage has just started and she and Joseph are not totally used to each other yet. 

It was March and it was cold. It was snowing lightly. It was thick, heavy snow, that never seemed to accumulate more than dust would.

Kate walked down Main Street with a home spun cloack wrapped around her shoulders and head. She ducked into the shop as quickly as possible carrying a basket of fresh greens. There were two patrons mingling quietly at the front of the store and as Kate walked toward the back she noticed Joseph’s face fell a bit as he spied her take for the day. She felt the same way. Lettuce was hardly filling and on a cold day like today they always hoped for something a bit more hearty.

She had been feeling sick the past few days, but this morning that sickness had turned to intense hunger. She was by no stretch of the imagination starving. They owned a shop, they did well for themselves. But both she and Joseph strove for something fresh. They were tired of rice and brans and potatoes. They enjoyed cauliflower and broccoli, and spinach was surprisingly hearty, but today she only managed lettuce from the local gardener, and that was better or warmer weather, not when you were trying to keep warm. These random cold days were more a mental battle than physical one.

Once the shop closed she started dinner. Downstairs she could hear Jospeh and his sister going through the days inventory, double-checking the purchase information and credit accounts. Joseph came upstairs and Kate asked if his sister didn’t want to stay for dinner. He insisted he’d asked her and she’d refused. Besides, that meant more for them, right? He didn’t eat any of the leftovers though. So Kate, not wanting to waste, polished off the excess serving, and she did so easily.

“Joseph?” she called to the sitting room where he was reading the newspaper.

He turned around waiting for her inquiry. Kate put down the dishes she was cleaning and walked over to the chair he was sitting in. She squatted down so she was slightly below his eye line.

“I’m pregnant.”

Joseph’s expression remained neutral for a moment and Kate feared she’d announced it all wrong. But before she could react to his reaction he smiled at her and grabbed her face and kissed her gently. She smiled back, as if asking if he was happy. The looked he returned suggested as much and he kissed her again, and returned to his newspaper. She was happy that he seemed happy, though she was admittedly hoping he would have said something.

She stood, still looking at him, somewhat expectantly, somewhat curiously, wanting to know what he was thinking. It was expected that once they marry they begin a family, but as her partner she wished he’d at least said something.

She shrugged it off to exhaustion and returned to the dirty dishes. Joseph gave a great sigh.

***

Next on The Civil War Story: Peter and Mr. Windt arrive in the deep South and Peter gets a glimpse of what his life is going to be like for the next few years. 

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