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Emily Frankel. All rights reserved.

Rose – page 6
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rosequote6aRose said lightly, "Every reason why you can't, may be the reason why you can."

Wynn laughed. "Great lyric for a song, Mrs. Marechal."

Aware that he must have asked Hank what her name was, Rose stopped at the gate in front of the white house on the corner. "Here we are."

"This is your home?" ...three stories, a tall, narrow gingerbread castle, turrets, attic with eaves, large yard, big porch, big bay window, a willow tree hovering over the roof like a fringed umbrella.... "You rent it?"

"My husband bought it as a surprise when I came home from the hospital with our daughter. I'm about to become a grandmother, didn't Hank tell you?"

"No, but he mentioned that your husband was uh..."

"Dead." Rose said the word without flinching, but it hurt. Even though the time for that kind of mourning was supposed to have passed, it resonated like the thud of a door.

"Mrs. Marechal, my wife —"

Rose interrupted, suddenly didn't want to hear his story or share any more details about herself other than what was necessary to make it clear that she wasn't interested in a relationship. "Mr. Winslow, I work every day, every evening at Diamond's Restaurant, except Mondays and next Monday I'm starting a computer course." Aware of his height and the protective man way he was looking down at her, Rose gave him a hostess's smile. "It was nice meeting you but I'm very busy, committed person, Mr. Winslow, with no time for socializing."

"Wynn. Everybody calls me 'Wynn.' And you're...?"

"Rose Marechal. I hope I haven't taken you out of your way."

"I live just a few blocks east of the high school. Let me put these bags on your front porch."

She opened the gate. He followed her up the path and set the shopping bags down on her porch.

She said, "Goodnight, Wynn."

He said, "Goodnight, Rose."

He closed the gate behind him, watched as she dug in her purse for keys. A blueish light was flickering in the front room with the bay window. A light popped on in the foyer and turned the panels of stained glass around the front door into dark gold, red, and green. The porch light came on and made a tiny moon over her head.

...Dandelion Lady in Rainbow Moonlight...

It was a click, a snapshot, a vision before his eyes as he turned away, and began to retrace his steps.

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