The Inheritance #2 – On the Way to Church

Posted on April 9, 2011 11:12 pm under The Inheritance
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The adults rode together in Matt’s minivan, while Kurt, Jerry and Kathleen’s oldest, transported the grandchildren in the family wagon. 

“Good thing there aren’t any more of us. Even with the van, we barely fit.”

“There would have been room for all of us in the limo, Jerry.”

“I’d rather walk, than go with that …”

“Jerry!”

Dana spoke up. “I think we’re all angry with Kelly, but this day isn’t about her. It’s about Grandpa Ned. Let’s not dishonor his memory. Surely, we can be civil for a couple hours. “

Matt smiled at his wife. “You’re right, Dana. She owes us some answers, but this isn’t the time or place.”

Ellen and Dave nodded their agreement.

“So we give her a little more time to fabricate a story.”

“Jerry, this has to stop.” Kathleen was adamant. “Now. The children heard you and so did half the town. Let’s keep our differences private.” Jerry’s face was sullen, but he said no more.

Corrine sat quietly with tears streaming down her face. Ellen put a comforting arm around her.

“Are you okay, sweetie?”

“I’m really an orphan now.”

They had lost their parents in a plane crash over thirty years before. Corrine had been an infant and Kelly barely a year older. Their maternal grandmother was widowed and her health was frail, but their father’s parents were in good health and lived in an eight bedroom home on a large expanse of beachfront property. The children had stayed with them while their parents were away. After the crash, they never left. Jerry and Ellen, the oldest, had been five and six. They still had memories of their parents, although they were dim and hard to separate from their grandparents’ recollections. Matt, Kelly and Corrine only remembered their grandparents and life in the wonderful rambling house. All of them understood how Corrine felt. Ned and Emma had parented them for many years and now both of them were gone.

Jerry’s sullenness and Corrine’s quiet sobs dampened conversation for the rest of the ride. At last, they approached the church hall. As one, they scanned the front of the church and then the parking lot.

“That’s peculiar. The limo should be here already.”

Jerry was roused from silence. “I’ve agreed to be civil, Kathleen, but don’t expect me to go looking for her.”

Kelly regained her composure on the drive back to the hotel. She did not wish to disrespect her grandfather and she wasn’t a coward. When they arrived at the hotel, she instructed the driver to wait. She went to her room and replaced the heels with flats. Although she had dressed carefully for the service, she had felt out of place amidst the more casual clothes of the other mourners. Her choices were limited, but she removed the shirt and jacket and replaced them with a pullover sweater. She smoothed her hair and returned to the limo. In minutes, she was at the church. There were many cars, but it appeared that everyone was already inside. She stood before the door, took a deep breath and opened it.

Silence fell over the room and she fought the urge to turn and flee.

Grandma

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One Response to “The Inheritance #2 – On the Way to Church”

  1. Sheilagh Lee Says:

    This is a wonderfully interesting story. I’m really enjoying it.