[From time to time, I will illustrate my story characters with: Richard Armitage as Sam Wakeforest, Marcia Gay Harden as Sam’s older sister Tessa Wakeforest Shoop Delaney, and Emily Deschanel as Tessa’s sister-in-law Olivia Delaney Wakeforest, Viola Davis as Pauletta Perkins, Cicely Tyson as Nellie Newton, Anna Sophia Robb as Alice Trent, Kevin Spacey as Roger Delaney, Sam Heughan as Todd Wakeforest, Idris Elba as Dominic Perkins, the late Polly Holliday as the Waitress Madge, Donald Sutherland as Aldus Warren, Teri Polo as Lillian Warren, and Ewan McGregor as David Warren, and others as noted.]
Author’s Content Note: “Love in the Great Pine Woods” is a mature love story with dramatic themes of love and relationships. It will mostly be at the PG and PG-13 movie levels. Specific chapters or passages may have a further rating of: L for language, D for dramatic emotions, and S for sensual themes. And I will rate the chapters accordingly. If you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the ratings that I provide for a chapter, then please do not read that chapter. This is my disclaimer. And as is my habit, I will summarize the previous chapter’s events at the beginning of the next chapter.
Author’s Recap from the Previous Chapter: With the nearly seven months pregnant with her first child Olivia Delaney Wakeforest having a blood clot in her thought to be fully healed lower left leg, that medical emergency overrode her husband Sam Wakeforest’s worries about losing Wakeforest Mountain to the Carter family’s civil suit brought claiming damages for their son and brother Aiden Carter’s death on the mountain when last January’s availanche hit. And Dr. Matt Carter compassionately agreed with the postponement of the hearing—as well as accompanied Sam Wakeforest to the hospital to consult about Olivia’s care.
“Love in the Great Pine Woods”, Ch. 41 (PG-13): What a Pregnant Lady Wants
After a few days stay recuperating and being observed at the Wakeforest County Hospital after her blood clot scare Monday July 11th, 1956, Olivia Delaney Wakeforest is released to go home to her husband Sam’s and her family’s care around 2pm on Thursday, July 14th. Her doctors have told her that she must still rest at home due to her pregnancy—not bed rest per se, but to put herself and her baby first, and do nothing strenuous, including walking too far—just to be cautious.
Yet Olivia is thrilled to finally go home and just be with her husband—without nurses, orderlies, doctors, and a steady stream of visitors interrupting them.
Walking into their first floor master bedroom suite at their Wakeforest Family home on the edge of the town of Wakeforest, Olivia gracefully slides onto the comforter of their large king sized bed.
Olivia: “Just wake me for dinner, Sam. I’m going to nap.” When her head hits the pillow, her eyes shut, and she smiles contentedly as she relishes the soft and cushy feel of their smooth downy comforter bedspread. No offense to the hospital’s scratchy cotton sheets and blankets—let alone the serviceable but lumpy mattress–but this, her own bed, is heaven. And with Olivia being almost seven months pregnant, her recent blod clot health ordeal has sapped all of her energy.
Setting down his wife’s Olivia’s large travel bag from her three and a half days at the hospital, Sam then goes to her side, brushing her bangs back from her face while sitting down on his side of their bed.
Sam: “Olivia, is there anything I can get for you, My Darling? Shall I help you into your nightgown so you can slip underneath the covers to sleep more comfortably?”
Olivia: “Riiiight.” She says slowly and drolly. “You undressing me always lets me sleep.” Olivia smiles with a wickedly raised eyebrow, still with her eyes closed.
Sam: Blushing, Sam promises. “Now, now. I can restrain myself.” Sam blinks. Afterall, it has been three and a half days. “For a while.” He winces, but she doesn’t see because her eyes are closed.
Olivia perks her head up from her pillow at her husband Sam, but she only raises her eyelids slightly—looking at him through drowsly slits.
Olivia: “Well! Now that’s sounds insulting. I’m as big as a house now, and you don’t desire me anymore.” Olivia pouts cutely—in the way that is intended to elicit her husband’s solicitude. Olivia has become quite good at that as a married lady of nearly seven months.
Sam: “Never! I am always desirous of you, My Darling.” He declares vehemently. “You’re carrying my child, well … our child. You have never looked lovelier.” Olivia seems to accept that with a small smile, but there is still a lingering threat of another pout, so Sam feels emboldened to express himself more passionately. “Olivia, My Love, I want nothing more than to show you how much I love you!” His loving ardor, muted until now, expresses itself. Sam leans over Olivia and showers her with light kisses upon her face and head and hands and arms.
Olivia: Smiling smugly, still with her eyes closed, she asks. “I thought you said you could restrain yourself?” Then she giggles. “Ha ha ha ha ha!” And Sam realizes her coquetry.
Sam: “Woman! You could try the patience of a saint. You can’t have it both ways.” Sam lies on his side facing her, with his head propped up in his right hand, with his left hand resting around her belly swollen with his love.
Olivia: Sleepily opening her eyes, Olivia smiles at her husband. “Why can’t I have it both ways? I want you to desire me and make love with me.”
Sam: “Your wish is my command.” Sam leans in and nuzzles her neck.
Olivia: Patting his head as she would a favorite and faithful doggie, Olivia demures. “I’m sorry Sam, Dear. I didn’t mean right now. Maybe tonight? If I can get enough rest with my nap? And if my back doesn’t hurt? Hmmm?” Her eyes are back to being closed.
Olivia: Almost asleep, Olivia drowsily asks. “Huh?” Then she drifts off to sleep.
Sam leans back and observes his sleeping wife Olivia with love and tenderness. She is his heart, his life, his everything. And Sam will do everything in his power to care for her as they await their first baby’s birth.
That night, Sam and Olivia do make love—gently, and under the recuperation guidelines set forth by Olivia’s leg surgeon doctor, Dr. Matt Carter. Though Sam did not broach the topic with the doctor– of marital relations with his wife so soon after her blood clot–Sam reasons that they weren’t told that it was prohibited. It is just that they have to follow Olivia’s general post hospital rules: she may lie flat in bed, but her legs must not be elevated above her heart; and she must not do anything strenuous, nor taxing for her pregnancy frame. Ease and comfort are her guidelines. Somehow, Sam and Olivia manage to follow the rules, mostly, for a loving and most satisfying evening.
Into the next week of July, Olivia finds that she feels completely recovered from her blood clot and that she can move freely about her home—the first floor anyway, with daily nap and rest periods—when she wants to. Actually, Olivia has come to like being pampered—especially by Sam. And what is a husband to do when his blood clot recovering nearly seven months pregnant wife wants things her way? Let her have them.
Olivia’s daily routine has settled into a comfortable and welcome pampering by her husband Sam, their household staff, and her sister-in-law Tessa. Sam brings his wife Olivia her breakfast in bed each morning, helps her in and out of the shower to be sure that she doesn’t fall, and fetches her favorite reading material before heading to the Wakeforest Family Lumber Mill to work the morning. Olivia enjoys cocooning in her bedroom, attempting to crochet little baby hats—baby booties construction was completely beyond her comprehension–that end up more like the size of tea cozies.
Then at lunch time, Sam comes home and he and Olivia eat lunch on their back veranda under the umbrella for some shade, enjoying the coolish breezes of their Northern climate, before Sam heads back to the Mountain. Olivia is still reticent about Sam going on the mountain each day. Even though in Summer, there are no avalanches, there is still the possibility of mountain lions, bears, idiots, etc. But Olivia knows that Wakeforest Mountain is his mountain, Sam’s life’s work. And she is trying to reconcile herself with that.
And the fact is that since the two weeks since her hospitalization–this Monday July 25th—there has yet to be any clarity on whether the Carter Family civil suit will proceed, since the hearings have yet to be rescheduled. So it is a uncertain time for them.
And today, Olivia’s sister-in-law Tessa Wakeforest Shoop Delaney stops by after lunch for some much needed girl talk time as then sit in the gazebo Sam had erected for her in their home’s back garden. There is only one brick wall standing, with the other sides open, since the removable wall panels are stored away in the garage during Summer to allow for cross ventilation.
Tessa: “Alright Miss Cryptic, what has you looking sad today?” The bubbly Tessa teases. Little does she know that she has hit a nerve.
Olivia: Olivia winces. “Am I that obvious?”
Tessa: Giving her a hug, Tessa soothes. “No, not really. It’s just that Sam gave me an eye roll on his way to his car after lunch as I was getting out of my car to come see you.”
Olivia: “An eye roll?” Olivia pouts.
Tessa: She back peddles. “Well, maybe not an eye roll. But a look of confusion. But then, aren’t all husbands confused how to keep us happy? And when they are, they are the most pliable for us. Ha ha ha ha ha!” Tessa laughs. Poor husbands—especially hers, Roger Delaney.
Olivia: “Tessa, I’m not manipulating Sam for my own pleasure.”
Tessa: “Oh? That’s not what I hear, Miss Pampered Pregnant Polly.” Tessa smiles teasingly and Olivia smiles.
Olivia: “Well, maybe just a little bit.” Olivia admits sheepishly. “It’s just, with my blood clot on top of my pregnancy limiting my movements, I haven’t been out of this house—well off of our grounds—since I was hospitalized two weeks ago.”
Tessa: “And you’re bored?” Tessa asks knowingly.
Olivia: “So bored, I would love to get out and go somewhere–even to go shopping!” Tessa grins gleefully.
Tessa: “You really are bored. Ha ha ha!” Then Tessa has a very good idea. “Why don’t we visit your Obstetrician’s Office for a quick check up, then go to the shoppes down town.” Tessa smiles very pleased with herself.
Olivia: “But I’m not supposed to walk long distances.” Olivia whines forlornly [(2) right].
Tessa: “And you won’t!” She smiles gleefully. “We can borrow a collapsible wheel chair from your doctor’s office.”
Olivia: “Could we see the Orphanage children, too? I haven’t seen them in so long.”
So Tessa engineers Olivia’s escape from the confines of her home, with the careful approval of her Obstetrician. Olivia is pronounced glowing in her pregnancy, but still encouraged to take it easy. The Wakeforest County Orphanage children adore seeing their former teacher Olivia for punch and cookies at the mid afternoon break—catching her up with what they’re learning and crafting, and gently patting her pregnant tummy with Olivia’s smiling nod.
Then Tessa zips them around in her car and over to the bank to see Roger—and pick up a little spending money from Roger who always has a money clip in his pocket for emergencies. And noting Olivia’s coming fatigue, Tessa suggests that they relegate their shopping outing to just one shop—yet to be chosen as they embrace and then say farewell to Roger.
So it is around three o’clock in the afternoon that Sam Wakeforest calls home from the Wakeforest Family Lumber Mill to surprise his wife to invite her out for dinner, that he discovers that he can’t find what he is looking for—his wife, Olivia. Their housekeeper Mrs. Ventura apologizes, but says that since Mrs. Tessa insisted upon giving Mrs. Olivia a little outing—and that it cheered Mrs. Olivia so—she didn’t have the heart to protest. Though she agreed that maybe Mrs. Olivia should have let her husband know. However, Mrs. Ventura also knows that sometimes husbands need to be disabused of the notion that wives always seek permission first. Sometimes, it his just easier to apologize later.
Then Sam goes on a not so merry calling chase to track down his wife. The obstetrician’s office staff aren’t all that helpful. Then he tries calling the orphanage and is relieved to hear from Mrs. Perkins, that Olivia was there for about twenty minutes having a cookie break with the children—with her looking cheerful and rosy cheeked—before she left for the bank.
So Sam decides to get going and instead of phoning his brother-in-law Roger Delaney at the bank, Sam drives his sporty red and white Bel Aire car there. As Sam walks past the tellers to the executive offices area, both Roger and Sam’s friend Dominic Perkins walk out of a conference room meeting.
Sam: “Roger! Dominic! Have you seen my wife!” Sam barks hastily.
Roger: Scowling, Roger responds disdainfully like the buttoned up banker that he is. “Hello to you, too! You know, I despair of you sometimes and your barking orders demeanor.”
Dominic: “Ha ha ha! Hi Sam.” The two men shake hands.
Sam: “ Hi Dominic.” Then he turns back to his brother-in-law Roger. “I don’t bark!” Sam whines.
Roger: “Hmm! To what do we owe this pleasure?”
Bank Clerk: Rushing up to Dominic, with her steno pad, she says. “Mr. Perkins, the bank auditor has arrived!”
Roger: “Go ahead! I’ll handle Sam.”
Dominic: “Alright. Good luck!”
And neither Sam nor Roger is certain whom the good luck is intended for.
Sam: “Handle me?” Sam frowns.
Roger: “My Office!” Roger does his best Sam barking imitation, turns on his heels and walks toward his office. Sam begrudgingly follows behind him. “Sit!” Roger commands.
Sam: “Now your’re the one doing the barking. What’s the matter, can’t get your pants on at home, so you have to wear them here at your bank?”
Roger: Muttering to himself under his breath, he says “Something like that.”
Sam: “What did you say?”
Roger: “Scotch or whiskey?
Sam: “Isn’t it a little early? It’s not even four o’clock yet.”
Roger: “Somewhere in the world, it is four o’clock.” Roger hands Sam a bar glass with two fingers of scotch in it.
Sam was only joking about having drink. But he usually does not imbibe this early, nor every day–just about once a week actually. Since Olivia can’t drink due to her pregnancy, Sam has also refrained–for the most part.
Sam takes a sip of his scotch, as does Roger. The men glare at each other suspiciously—as any good brothers-in-laws do. Finally, Sam can be patient no longer.
Sam: “Where is she!” Sam sputters.
Roger: Roger raises his eyebrow smirkingly. “By where, I presume you mean a location. And by she, I presume you mean Olivia.” Roger sips.
Sam: Sam thinks that Roger can be so maddening at times. Rolling his eyes, Sam pleads. “Olivia is supposed to rest, not galavant around town!” Sam takes another sip of his drink.
Roger: “Shopping! I think.” Roger amends. “All I know is that Tessa wheeled Olivia in here about thirty minutes ago, said hello, pinched $100 in twenties from my money clip, …” Roger waves his still thick money clip at Sam, whose eyes grow wide. “… and then they left. I’m not their keeper.”
Sam; “Don’t you care that your sister Olivia should be resting herself and the baby she is carrying? My baby that she is carrying?”
Roger: “Oh please!” Roger waves his hand dismissively. “Olivia looked like she was having a great time! I haven’t seen her looking this good in weeks! Give her a break and calm down.”
Sam: Sam pouts. “But I’m worried about her.”
Roger: “Sam, I have learned from wife Tessa—your sister-…” He adds for emphasis. “…that life can’t be lived in a worried state all the time if one is to live life fully.”
Sam: Sam looks at Roger as if he has two heads. “Who are you? Mr. Anything Goes Guru brother-in-law.”
Roger: “I’m me—just … enhanced. And you could do with some loosening up yourself.”
Sam: “Now that is like the pot calling the kettle black.” Sam shakes his head.
Roger “Still, I’m right.” Annoyingly so, thinks Sam.
Sam: “But I have to find Olivia, to make sure that she’s alright?” Sam looks pitiably at his brother-in-law.
Roger: Rolling his eyes now, Roger relents. “If I were a betting man—which I am not. Unfortunate business gambling. It usually affects those least able to countenance losing their funds. And …”
Sam: “Roger!” Sam barks to get Roger back on track.
Roger: “Oh right. Well, I would look where ladies like to go when pampering themselves.”
Sam: “I pamper Olivia. She doesn’t have to lift a finger at home between me and Mrs. Ventura.
Roger: “As much as our ladies like to be pampered by us–their husbands–sometimes they just need their own version of pampering.”
Sam: “Which is?”
Roger: Roger smiles at being the expert husband here in this conversation. “Start with Marcia’s Hair Emporium. Tessa usually favors a new hairdo and a manicure to get her juices flowing.” Roger Smirks.
Sam “But that doesn’t cost them $100.” Sam shakes his head in confusion.
Roger: “No. But then they need to buy new clothes, and visit gift shops—or maybe the baby store.”
Sam: “But the baby’s room is almost ready. The designer just has to bring in the furniture.” Sam is being logical when logic has nothing to do with it. His wife Olivia has a free will of her own and can sometimes be unpredictable.
Roger: “Just because a closet or a room is full or designed, respectively, it never stopped Tessa. But lest you think that I view Tessa’s shopping activities as frivolous, I do not. She is a wonderful wife and sister and foster mother, a savvy business woman, and a wonderful philanthropist. If a little bit of shopping gives her pleasure, then I am all for it. Let Olivia have her fun, too.”
Sam: “Thanks for the advice. So I’m off to the hair stylists.” Sam winces.
Roger: “Good luck!”
And Sam knows that it is intended for him, now.
After following the ladies trail of the beauty salon, Tessa’s dress shop Elle, and a nearby gift shop, Sam finally finds his wife Olivia and sister Tessa at the BabyLand store in downtown Wakeforest around half past four o’clock in the afternoon. Rushing inside, Sam sees his wife Olivia fingering a soft baby blanket while thankfully sitting in the borrowed wheelchair.
Sam: “There you are!” Sam sighes with a smile on his face as he kneels next to Olivia. Then he kisses her cheek.
Olivia: “Sam!” Olivia smiles beatifically.
Sam notices how happy Olivia seems.
Tessa: “Hi Sam.” Tessa winks. “I guess you found us.”
Sam: “Indeed! And I have been on a merry chase. But I’m glad to see that you’re looking in the pink.” Sam stands up, still remembering to smile
Olivia: “Oh Sam! Tessa and I have had such a fun afternoon—the first I’ve had in a long while.” She sighs delightedly.
Sam: “And here I thought to surprise you with dinner out—at The Towering Pines restaurant.” Sam kisses his wife in a lingeringly tender hello.
Tessa: “Ooh!” Tessa squeals. “Your new dress will look perfect for your dinner date, Olivia”
Olivia: “Yes, but I want to go home and change into it.”
Sam: “Your wish is my command, Oh Fair Lady.” Sam does an exaggerated bow.
Olivia: Olivia Giggles. “Ha ha ha!” Then she rolls her eyes cheerfully. “Alright Sir Sam, let’s get going.”
And Sam and Olivia do have a lovely time spent together over dinner—but outside of their house. As a husband of nearly seven months, Sam has learned his most important lesson—a happy wife, equals a happy life. And with a very pregnant Olivia wanting a little pampering, what Olivia wants, Olivia gets—and Sam is happy to facilitate her wants, and her desires.
And when Sam and Olivia return home, for the evening to get ready for bed, Sam notices a large thick envelope on the foyer table. He was going leave it there until the morning. But something about the size of the missive intrigues him. So Sam kisses his wife before she walks back to their master bedroom suite. Then he lifts up the envelope. It is rounded, thick and heavy.
Sam delays for only and instant about looking inside. But when he turns the envelope over to the front, he sees the seventh circuit Court of Appeals as a return address.
Sam: “Drat!” Or something more colorful hisses out of Sam’s mouth. Dreading what he might find there. Sam opens the envelope—quickly perusing the cover sheet to a court brief, the words jump out of him from the page.
Olivia walks back to the foyer, half out of her clothes with her skirt missing and her slip showing underneath her blouse.
Olivia: “Saaaam? Are you coming to bed, or not?” Olivia asks in fatigued amusement. Then sees his shocked facial expression and looks at him quizzically.
Sam: Sam looks up at his wife and mutters with incredulity as he holds out the sheaf of papers. “I don’t believe it!”
To be continued with Chapter 41
References for Ch. 41 by Gratiana Lovelace, June 20, 2016 (Post #926)
1) The “Love in the Great Pine Woods” story cover is a composite of two images manipped by Grati:
a) the Richard Armitage portrait is from the 2011 Project Magazine photo shoot and article interview, that was found at http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/Richard/Promos/ProjectMagJuly2011/album/slides/ProjectMag-05.html;
b) the snowy Pine forest vertical image was found on Pinterest at https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/62/fa/ff/62faff1253d55f571eb3659cc7661e73.jpg
2) Olivia Wakeforest looking pregnant image is that of Emily Deschanel found at http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2014/09/30/1412052923049_Image_galleryImage_LOS_ANGELES_CA_SEPTEMBER_.JPG
3) Sam Wakeforest image is Richard Armitage in 2011 Project Magazine-BlkJkt664917000Oct0111RARU-pix-sized-brt
Previous Blog Ch. 40 Story link with embedded illustrations: