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Friday, January 30, 2015

The Fourth Man - Chapter 17

Chen is the Best Cook Around

Something new is a coming

Mamie and I went to dinner at my folks place and I must admit Chen is still the best cook around. At times Mai tries to get him to change his method of cooking but on this issue he stands tall. For the most part she rules the roost but not on this.

Their little girl Cherri Leng is growing up like the rest of the kids on our ranches and just looking at his wife Mai, I think she is going to present Chen with another child rather soon.

I could ask Mamie for she keeps up on the woman stuff but I guess I’ll wait and see. While eating I was looking at Sarah my mom and it struck me that she was still a young woman.

Another thing I noticed was she and Mamie was talking about something more intently than usual. I wanted to ask about their conversation but I knew what the answer would be; “it is just woman stuff.”  That always shut me up but wasn’t a very satisfactory answer.

After some time they nodded in agreement and mom said we have an announcement to make.  
Guess What ?
Mamie and I are both with child. I dropped my fork at that news and Les turned a bit white.

I could see Les was having a lot of thoughts but after consideration he never expressed what he was thinking.

I was too limp to think and just sat there stunned.

Of course we had been married for four years but I couldn’t get a handle on this news.  My sister Missy was sixteen and James about fourteen with Caroline being somewhere around nine. Now there was no reason for Mamie not to have our first child but this would be number five for mom.

Les said it‘d better be a boy for these girls attract too much attention which caused Missy and Caroline to smile.

I had to agree with dad but it was out of my hands so it became a case of “whatever.”

Missy wanted to be right in the middle of the conversation for she was once again feeling womanly.

Les had hired the school teacher Rene’e who wanted Missy to go to a girl’s finishing school but Les was a bit hesitant to let her out of her mother’s sight.

With the new baby coming he finally relented and allowed her teacher to enroll her in a Boston school.  None of us were sure where Boston was just that it was east of us.

Les wanted Rene’e to go with her and get her settled in before the school year started.  Jim took both of them to the station and saw them off. Two weeks later Rene’e returned and said everything was set and that they should start getting letters from Missy very soon.

Missy Writes from school

It was hard waiting for the first letter but it finally arrived telling them about the first few days which had been somewhat an adventure.

She said, “At first I could hardly understand them even though they were supposed to be speaking English. They told me they had the same problem with the way I talk.

I soon caught on and now I can understand most of what the teacher is saying. Everything is so proper here. It is far different from the girl’s school I had been attending. It is a good thing that Rene’e helped me before she left for I would have really stood out as being uncouth.

My roommate is different from anyone I have ever met for she will hardly talk to me. Back home we have some shy people but this gal is worse than any I know back there. She studies a great deal but her grades aren’t that good for some reason. Since my grades are very good I told her I would help her if she wished but she didn’t accept my offer.

Many of the girls now know Linda is my roommate and act as if I’m as dumb as she appears to be.  I have had to straighten a few of them out on that line of thinking. Some of them act as if they are tough but I figure they would be easier to handle than roping a calf and branding it which I have done. I will let you know if I’ve had to whip one of them.

There is another side to this story and that is some of them are sneaky and demean you behind your back. A couple of the meanest girls did some dirt to Linda (they call her Looney Linda).

I won’t go into detail but it had to do with dog poop and her drawers. I found out who did it and told Linda. She really got mad and while she didn’t say anything she was fuming.

Later I saw Linda in the general store buying some nasty glue. You could smell it over a block away. Anyway the girls that did Linda dirty found their shoes with glue in them and the clothes covered with glue along with much of their room.

This brought out a lot of laughing at the guilty parties for they had been bragging about what they had done to Linda.

The news that someone had gotten even with those girls amused the whole campus for they had pulled stuff on many of the other girls.”

Missy and the tough gal

One of the girls was known as the tough gal on campus. Later that afternoon she braced Linda and wanted to fight with her. It looked to everyone like Linda was going to get a whipping but she said maybe you got the wrong girl.  That deterred her for a minute.
Then I said you look like you want to get whipped. This caused her to backup and rethink the situation.

I told her that I have whipped bigger and tougher gals than you so if a fight is the only thing that will satisfy you - - then I’m here to make you happy.

She looked at Linda and said that she would get her later.

That was the last we have heard about the whole incident so far.

Linda said I guess it’s time for me to quit fooling around and start getting my grades up. She went on to explain about her mother bragged on her sister about the fact she got top grades to everyone so she decided to get poor grades on purpose.

She didn’t want to be put on display like her sister.

I told her I didn’t understand how anyone could study as much as she did and still get the poor grades she did so I’m glad she explained that.  

From that time on she got straight A/s and since we studied together my grades are almost as good as hers.

She began to talk to the girls and make friends with them. She started attending the dances at the boy’s academy with me and has become very popular.

The transformation of Linda was amazing. She is a very good actress for she had me and everyone fooled into thinking she was a dumb backward young lady.

Not coming home for the summer

Missy wrote Sarah her mom that Linda had invited her to stay with her and her folks for the summer and take some classes on debating.

Sarah wrote back and said, “You are good at arguing and if you learn how to do it right maybe you will get good at it.”

Missy thought that sounds like mom and I’m going to miss her and the ranch but if I went home I would miss out on something I’m really fascinated by.

Missy wrote back, “Linda and I are planning on teaming up and see how we stack up against the men at other schools.

Perhaps I will be able to hook up with James when he enrolls in the military school this coming year.”
To Be Continued

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