Random Inspirations

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Sneak Peek: Part 2

on September 20, 2012

I’d like to give a big shout-out to everyone who checked out my last blog post–thanks guys! And if you liked what you read, here is the next installment of Rum-spring-a Break. Don’t we all need a little YA fiction to get us through a hard week?

“Oh come on, Rebekah,” Mercy says, sticking the flat iron and nail polish in the deep pockets of her starched, white apron. “We turn sixteen tomorrow! And besides, we’re not really starting rumspringa. We’re just seeing what’s out there before we experience the world for ourselves. There’s nothing wrong with that. Let’s go inside now. Mama wants us to help with supper. You’re done with your chores, right?”

I nod yes. I actually love my chores. My father owns four horses and a small herd of dairy cows, and I’m largely responsible for their grooming and feeding, as well as their health. I’ve milked cows, birthed foals, and even concocted my own healing poultices for the sick and wounded. Jakob, the boy next door, says I have “a way with animals.”

“Why am I not surprised?” Mercy says, sighing. “Sometimes it’s just exhausting being your sister.”

I smile. I often feel the same way.

***

That night, I wait until everyone is asleep, even Mercy. I creep over to the tall window that overlooks the pasture. Gingerly, I lift it open, first a crack, then up and up until nothing separates me from the sweet-breathed air of the springtime night. Clutching my long, homespun skirt, I shimmy down the tree and drop down into the dewy grass. Then, I stroll along my family’s property, gazing at the stars as I continue the daydream that Mercy interrupted earlier.

I dream of leaving the farm in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania, and exploring the city. I dream of studying veterinary medicine…and of, one day, becoming a veterinarian. Naturally, this isn’t allowed; the Amish believe that too much worldly wisdom makes one proud, but I dream of it anyway. I dream of meeting boys outside my family’s circle, English boys who are rugged and handsome and mysterious.

“Rebekah!” a voice calls softly across the field. I whip around, and spot a dark form approaching. As my eyes focus, I discern a lanky body, a familiar straw hat, and a light blond beard just starting to sprout.

“Ugh,” I groan under my breath. Then, to the dark figure, I add, “Hello, Jakob!”

Jakob sidles up next to me, not touching me, but so close I realize he probably wants to. “I was hoping you would be out for a midnight walk.”

“I like to walk at night.” Alone, I mentally add, sidestepping Jakob and ambling toward the brook. I skip a pebble over its surface, delighting in the moonbeams that glint off the stone and dance on the babbling waters.

“Dreaming, aren’t you?” Jakob asks. “About rumspringa?”

I forget that I’m annoyed about being disturbed as I’m enveloped by sheer excitement once again. My breath hitches as I say, “I can’t help but dream about it.”

“It’s after midnight,” Jakob says, looking at the moon. He can estimate the time just by gazing at the sky. “You’re sixteen. Happy birthday, your rumspringa starts now.”

Curious for more? Check out Rebekah’s rumspringa debauchery in the next installment, coming up on my blog next week!

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