The Wedding Quilt – Episode 46

Donald Stewart used his last piece of buttermilk pancake to mop up the maple syrup from his plate.

“It was worth coming to Canada for this breakfast alone,” he told Mamie, who inclined her head at the compliment. “I have enjoyed my stay, but it’s time I was moving on. I’ve decided I’d like to see a bit more of Canada before returning to Scotland, and I mean to leave tomorrow.”

“And where do you intend to go next?”

“Back to Toronto to start with, for Stella has offered to show me the sights. And naturally I’m looking forward to meeting her parents.”

“Of course.” Mamie hid a smile. It didn’t take a crystal ball to see that the quiet young man was badly smitten with Stella Foster.

She only hoped that the girl would do right by him. It would be too bad if she accepted him on the rebound after her unhappy love affair with Russell, or worse, led him on in an attempt to restore her self-confidence.

Still, Donald was a grown man and must take his chances.

Mamie was more concerned about Beasie, who had been very quiet since her break-up with Paddy Ryan. Stella was partly to blame for that, and bitter words had been exchanged between the young women as a result.

“You can’t put the blame on me,” Stella had said, tossing her head. “So what if I did tease him a bit? If he loved you nothing would have kept you apart. If he’s not reliable it was better for you to find out now. Believe me, I know what I’m talking about.”

It was true, of course, but not what Beasie needed to hear. Mamie hoped that Frank might step in now that Paddy had left for the West.

Matt approved of the young railroad conductor, muttering to his wife in the privacy of their bedroom that a quiet fellow with a steady job, such as Frank Carmody, was worth ten of the flamboyant young Ryan. But Frank was slow to make his move.

Had he lost interest when Beasie had eyes only for Black Paddy Ryan, or was he simply biding his time? Mamie wondered if she should have a word with Frank, but her husband warned her not to meddle.

She did, however, speak to Drusilla.

“I thought you could give your brother a little nudge, dear. Get him moving in the right direction.”

But Drusilla shook her head.

“You know how much I’d like to have Beasie for a sister-in-law, Mrs Burke, but Frank is stubborn as a mule. I could say something to him, but I’d be wasting my breath. He’ll propose to Beasie when he’s good and ready, and not a moment before!”

“I suppose you’re right, but it’s hard for a mother to stand by and watch her child suffering. When you’re a mother yourself you’ll know all about it.”

Drusilla sighed.

“I think I was born to be an old maid, Mrs Burke. Most of the boys we went to school with went away to the war, and never came home. It’s not as if I ever go anywhere to meet anybody, is it?

“You know I’m glad to keep house for poor Dad, but it keeps me close to home. Unless Prince Charming steps off the train some fine morning and sweeps me off my feet, I’m doomed to remain single all my life.”

“We never know what’s around the corner, dear.”

Mamie knew just how to solve Drusilla’s problem! Beasie should marry Frank and go to live at the station house.

That would give Drusilla the freedom to spread her wings, perhaps to train for the nursing career she’d always wanted. Would it really hurt to give Frank a little push?

“You must all come to supper the next time Frank is home,” she decided.

“And you must all come to us,” Drusilla responded.

The two women exchanged gleeful smiles.

Abigail Phillips

Abbie is the newest member of the fiction team at the "Friend." She loves how varied the role is - every day is different and there is always a new story to read. She is keen to work closely with established writers and discover new writers, too.