Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Write in the ROMANCE genre (04/19/07)
TITLE: Friends and Coincidence
By cathy nethercutt
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Not quite handsome at the time, but Jonathan Paul Ross had the deepest, dark brown eyes. Something else about him was different. He always seemed so comfortable with himself, like he didn’t have to impress anyone…ah, yes Lenora remembered some of those early impressions of boys, and smiled to herself.
Now, reading an engagement announcement, she could see he had turned out quite handsome, with his dark brown eyes and hair, much different than his shock of untamed hair in those days. He always had talked about serving God, living your faith. She was a faithful churchgoer, but it was mostly just a way to see her friends. She didn’t pay much attention to all that “Jesus” stuff.
She looked over the young woman in the picture. She was really pretty…and they looked good together. Lenora put the paper down with a sigh, and started walking back to the Dr.’s office where she worked as the receptionist. Dr. Nichols really was a wonderful pediatrition in her opinion, and his wife, also his nurse, had quickly become her best friend in the 2 years she’d worked there.
The park was beautiful this spring day. Lenora was glad she walked over on her lunch break. As she walked in the door, she heard Janet Nichols say, “at last!” Taking one look at the screaming toddler on her lap, Lenora immediately picked the child up and whispered in her ear. Slowly, she began to quiet, then stuck her thumb in her mouth. “How do you do that?” said a bewildered Janet. Lenora smiled, “honestly, it’s just the change that breaks the pattern of behavior, Nothing special. Where is her mother?” Janet nodded toward a young man seated in the waiting room. “She’s his niece. He was relegated to bring Stacey in for her DPT.”
Something looked familiar to Lenora. “Jonathan!” she spoke as she walked towards him, little Stacey on her hip. “I was just looking at your picture in the paper a few minutes ago. When is the wedding?” Jonathan forced little smile and said, “never, it seems.” Then, turning the conversation to Lenora, “You look great, not scrawny any more, huh?” Lenora blushed, being a little irritated, and said, “neither are you!” Jonathan stumbled over his words, trying to undo the damage, thinking how pretty she turned out after all.
“Well, here’s your niece.” She placed Stacey on her uncle’s lap. “It was nice of you to help out, Jonathan.” “Thank you,” muttered Jonathan, and he rose to leave. Opening the door, he said, “hey, Lenora, lets get together some time and catch up on things.” Lenora was a little surprised, but smiled and told him she’d love to. “I’ll give you a call later, if that’s ok,” Jonathan said, looking to her face for her reaction. “Sure! My number’s in the book.”
“That certainly was strange,” Janet mused, the twinkle in her eye betraying her. “Janet Nichols! You set this up!” Lenora laughed as she went back to work. “Oh well, what are friends for?” Lenora hurried home that evening. Tonight was the mid-week service at church. Unable to go lately due to a nasty virus, she’d heard all about the new Youth Pastor. After grabbing a quick sandwich, Lenora threw on her dress, washed her face, and headed out the door. The church was only a couple blocks down and she decided to walk, grabbing a sweater, just in case.
Walking up the steps into church, she could hear the piano. With his back to her, she walked around the side, and said, “Hello! I’m Lenora Olsen. And with that, they both burst into laughter. Suddenly, Jonathan jumped up, “Where are my manners, Miss Olsen? Glad to make your acquaintance!”
Later, Jonathan walked her home. As they walked, Jonathan asked, “When we were in school, I didn’t think you were a Christian. Was I wrong?” Lenora sighed, “no, I wasn’t then…I went to church, but when my father died, I started attending services with a different heart. It wasn’t long before I gave my heart to Christ.” As she looked into his face, her brown eyes met his, and her heart skipped. Jonathan smiled, “Know anyone who can show me around town? It’s changed so much since I’ve been gone.”
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