Jamie had been at the Sunnyvale Veterinary Clinic for two weeks before the opportunity to approach Miss Bessie about selling the farm presented itself. It was actually Brad who was with Miss B when the subject of the farm came up.
“I have so enjoyed my stay here, Brad, but it’s not fair for me to expect your hired hand to continue to take care of the farm. I think it’s time I move back.”
“I’ve been waiting for a good time to discuss something with you, Miss Bessie,” Brad said. “I guess this is the time.”
“I hope you’re not going to, once again, suggest that I sell it. Harold and I spent over fifty years on that farm and I can’t bear the thought of someone else living there and taking over.”
Miss Bessie’s expression showed her mind was made up. As far as she was concerned, the discussion had ended. Brad forged ahead, anyway.
“I understand how you feel, Miss B, but you might feel differently when you learn who is very interested in buying it.”
“For heaven sakes, Brad, just tell me who it is, but I can assure you right now, it won’t make a difference.”
“It’s Jamie,” he said. “As you know, she started her internship at the clinic in town, early. She wants to settle here and she loves the farm.”
“Jamie? It’s Jamie who wants to buy my farm?” Miss Bessie folded her arms but her expression softened. “Where would I live?” She asked. “I can’t stay here forever.”
“Give me one good reason why not,” Brad said. “I wish you knew how much better my life has been since Arf brought us all together. As you say in your prayers each morning, we’re a family.”
“I don’t know what to say.” Miss Bessie was clearly touched by what Brad, who never wore his feelings on his sleeve, had shared.
“Say yes…I’m going to need your help to convince Steve to live here with Katie, and Grandma Helen to stay on as well. It goes without saying that Arf will live here with all of us. Jamie will be close to the clinic and she will love the farm almost as much as you do.”
Miss Bessie didn’t respond at first, but Brad knew he had won her over.
“Tell Jamie I’ll sell the farm to her, but only if she continues to provide eggs to the Sunnyvale General Store. We must keep that tradition alive.”
***Steve took Katie and me back to the clinic for more lessons with Sam. I was one confused therapy dog. A wonderful thing had happened. For the first time in her whole life, Katie had stood up. Why didn’t she want to tell Steve? Would she show Sam, the physical therapist?
I want them to know. I believe that telling them is the right thing to do. I don’t want to betray Katie, but she needs me to help her do whatever it takes to walk on her own. What a great day that will be. I have to find a way to convince Katie not to keep secrets.