Sunday, May 31, 2009

Maynely a Mystery: chapter one, page twenty-four

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The mourners left as they had arrived, in ones, twos, and threes. Olivia lingered, as did her parents and a few of her cousins.

In the garden, an Irish lace tablecloth covered a small antique cast-iron table. On the table rested photos of Grandmother Esther and the urn that contained her ashes. The photos recounted a lifetime: Esther as a young woman barely out of her teens, then with each husband and with her progressively increasing family.

The first of these family photos was a black and white picture in a simple plain wood frame. Olivia knew the picture well. It was one Katherine proudly displayed on her fireplace mantel. Occupying the center of the picture, seated on a chair, was a young woman. Her long fair hair was swept back from her face. It was secured on either side by two ribbon clips. The rest of her hair hung in long curls. Olivia could tell that the woman had applied make-up for the picture. Her lips were unnaturally dark. Resting in the woman's lap was a bundle of blankets. Poking from the folds of the blanket was a baby -- crocheted bonnet on its head.


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