HOME - KITCHEN
glad Randy’s out with
Burt Lamont smiled across the kitchen
table at his wife, Janet, as he finished the last bite of his dinner.
“It gives us moments like this to be alone together – just
you and me… and this wonderful roast.”
He flashed her a teasing grin.
“Oh, stop it,” she laughed and gave
him a playful slap on the arm before rising from her chair to start
clearing the dinner dishes. “The
real question is did you save room for some pie?
I baked a wonderful rhubarb pie this afternoon and I’ve been
dying for you to try it.”
After all of that dinner?”
His eyes grew wide and he sunk down into his chair as if a two
ton weight had suddenly been lowered onto his shoulders.
“I can barely move as it is.
If someone had told me a year ago that I was going to be married
to the most beautiful girl in the world and that she could cook like
nobody’s business, I’d have told them they were crazy.
Especially since I don’t think that expert cooking skills are
something greatly stressed or valued among high society.”
“I told you that I used to spend a lot
of time in the kitchen with the staff when I was growing up.”
Janet began to fill the sink up with water, dishes, and a bar of
soap. “Everything I know,
I know because of Maeve. I
actually used her recipe for that rhubarb pie sitting over there on the
“The staff,” Burt muttered to himself
as he cleared the rest of the dishes from the table and carried them
over to the sink.
“Did you say something, dear?”
“I was just… well….”
He let out a long exhale. “Look,
Janet, I know this house isn’t anything like you’re used to.
It’s not one of those big houses on the other side of the lake
and it’s not one of those penthouses in the middle of Manhattan.
It’s barely more than an old farmhouse that we get to live in
free of charge because I take care of the stables and tend to the horses
it’s our home.” She
gently stroked his cheek and looked him lovingly in the eyes.
“You’re my husband now, Burt.
Wherever you are, that’s where I belong.
That’s home to me.
I could live in a castle fit for a fairytale princess, but if
you’re not there with me, then it’s nowhere I belong.”
Burt pulled her into his arms and held her tightly as he buried
his face in her flaxen hair and inhaled her scent.
“You deserve so much more than this – than me.”
“And that’s where you’re completely
wrong – I’m the one who doesn’t deserve you.
I’ve made so many mistakes… done some awful things… but
Janet pulled herself out of his embrace
and turned away from him, unable to look him in the eyes.
If he ever found out the truth – if he ever knew what she’d
done – he’d never be able to forgive her.
She knew that for
“Don’t be ridiculous,” he chuckled
as he reached out and took her by the hand, drawing her back into his
arms. “There’s nothing
you could ever do that would make me doubt how much I love you and you
deserve every bit of happiness that we’ve been fortunate enough to
find. I know things
haven’t been easy for you because of Judith, but all of that’s in
the past. I should’ve been
honest with you from the beginning about what happened between me and
your sister in New York and the baby but….”
“That wasn’t your fault.
It was never your fault. It
was before we even met. How…
how were you supposed to know back then that we’d both wind up meeting
each other here in Albanyville?”
whoever’s fault it was – mine… the fates…
– I promise you that as soon as the inheritance Charles
promised me from my father’s estate comes through, I’m going to
build you the biggest house on the other side of the lake that you’ve
ever seen. It’s going to
be everything that you deserve.”
Before Janet could protest Burt’s
overly extravagant offer, the telephone rang, intruding on the deeply
private and emotional moment.
“I’ve got it,” he said as he left
his wife’s arms and reached for the receiver.
“Burt darling, it’s Judith,” Judith
Lamont said on the other end of the line.
“I’ve been doing a lot of thinking and I need to see you.
“I… don’t think that’s a good
idea.” Burt’s eyes
immediately darted to Janet who was listening to his end of the
conversation with much interest as he struggled to conceal the identity
of the caller. He knew that
a telephone call from Judith would upset Janet and he wanted to spare
her. “There’s really
nothing we need to discuss.”
“Oh, I beg to differ,” Judith said
softly. “I need to speak
to you about something that’s been weighing on my mind very heavily
these last few weeks. It’s
something I tried to tell you before, but you wouldn’t listen.”
“What makes you think I have any
intention of listening to you now?” he muttered under his breath into
this concerns Janet… and our baby,” She explained rather
matter-of-factly. “What I
have to tell you is very important and it will change your life
“All… all right,” he grumbled.
“Meet me down at the stables in about 30 minutes?
I don’t want Janet to know anything about this.
I don’t want her upset.”
“Of course you don’t.”
“Burt, who was that on the phone?”
Janet asked as she came up behind him and he returned the telephone
receiver to its cradle. “I
couldn’t hear what you were saying, but you look like it was
“It’s really nothing to worry
yourself over,” he smiled and then leaned in to kiss her lovingly on
the cheek. “Just Mr.
McGhee down at the bank wanting me to stop by to fill out some paperwork
about my father’s estate. I
told you I was going to build that house for you.”
At this hour?”
“He must’ve been working late or
something. I really didn’t
ask.” He walked over to
the backdoor and looked up at the sky outside.
“You know, I think from the looks of those clouds rolling in
that we might actually be in for a storm.
I’d say it’s about time because after the way it’s been
this summer, we really need the rain.
I better go down to the stables and make sure the horses are
secure incase the weather gets bad.”
“All right,” Janet walked over to the
open doorway and kissed him tenderly.
“I will,” he grinned.
“And I have a feeling I’ll be ready for a piece of that
rhubarb pie you made.”