Monday, 14 November 2016

Monday, November 14, 2016 - ,

Martha's Texas Cowboy

a mail order bride novella
by Jocelyn Cross
Published: Oct 21, 2016
Words: 32,124
Category: western, romance, historical
Orientation: M/F
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1. The Mail Order Bride

Frightened beyond any reasonable description, the young woman stood quivering fearfully in an upstairs room of a dingy hotel in Amargo, Texas. The man she had married just a few scant hours earlier had gone out to the balcony in response to the shouts, yells, horrible noises and gun shots that had erupted just beyond the window of their room.

She was already scared about the situation in which she had found herself immersed only moments before. The young woman had married the man a few hours earlier ... marrying him less than an hour after meeting him in person. She had traveled for days from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to the hot, dusty town of Amargo, Texas with the express purpose of marrying a man whom she had met and who subsequently proposed to her through the mail.

She was frightened for what she had thought was to come next: a wedding night and the conjugal duties of a new wife; a new wife who had been raised substantially without the benefit of a mother, and whose preparations for her marital responsibilities had been handled by a nun ... a nun whom she knew had adhered to her vow of chastity and whose advice had seemed woefully simplistic when given, and now clearly totally inadequate as the young woman awaited the return of the rough and tumble cowboy who was her new husband.

Two more gunshots rang out amidst the din of the crowd and the woman pressed her hands to her ears as she quaked in fear. Would her new husband survive the night? And if he did return, could she be the wife he was expecting?

2. Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
Martha Anderson was one thousands of sad statistics of the Battle of Gettysburg during the American Civil War; a battle that lasted three long days. Martha and her parents lived on a farm nearby and on the first dreadful blast of Confederate artillery their modest farm house was blown to bits. Martha and her parents had been hiding in the root cellar but that proved to be inadequate: both of her parents were killed instantly and the then 10 year old Martha was struck by shrapnel and knocked unconscious.

Martha lay beneath the rubble for three days before being discovered. A kindly Union doctor tended to her wounds. Fortunately, only a long jagged scar from the shrapnel would remain on her back just below her right shoulder and the effects of being knocked unconscious were temporary. The biggest wounds, however, could not be cured: her parents were dead.

The ten year old was passed from local family to family as she had no relatives to take her in. Eventually, Martha ended up in an orphanage where she remained until she turned 18 years old. It was a difficult existence living in an all-girls orphanage for eight years.