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Maple Street Memories #14

Episode Fourteen

Everything she knew and loved was disappearing.  She went through the motions of showing the two men each room and waited while they made notes.  After two hours of misery, the men left and promised to get a quote back to her within a few days.

The days preceding the funeral for her father were a blur of sadness and despair mixed with dread.  She knew his family would not want her at the service, but she had to go.  For Papa.  For her mother.  For herself.

One of the dresses he had treated her to on her shopping spree was a simple black dress.  She slipped it on and adjusted it in the mirror.  She caressed a small diamond necklace Papa had given her and fastened it around her neck.

She slipped on her mother’s red coat, that despite its age looked new.  She drove to the cemetery and parked away from the throng on cars lining the drive.  She stayed on the fringe, choosing to watch from behind a tree.  She listened to the preacher eulogize Papa and enumerate all of his accomplishments.  She heard the names of his wife and children and the loud sniffles from the family seated in front of the casket.

She strained her ear, hoping to catch the mention of her name, but instead heard only the drone of the preacher and the accolades for the Bernard family.  Soon the preacher prayed and invited the mourners to a luncheon at the Bernard Estate.  The crowd began to move.  She watched as a line of guests passed by and greeted Mrs. Bernard and her children.

Mary wiggled her toes in her heels, waiting for the last of the family to leave.  She made her way across the still wet grass, dodging headstones and markers until she arrived at the chairs placed in front of the shiny wooden casket.

She pulled her hand out of her glove and slid it along the smooth wood.  It was a gorgeous dark mahogany, adorned with gold hardware.  A huge spray of roses covered the top of the large box that held her father.  A tear fell and plopped atop the polished surface, sliding off without a trace.

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