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The Unhealable Heart
The Unhealable Heart
One might say that to gain true satisfaction and accomplishment in life is to be filthy rich with every minutest material pleasures that life has to offer, others would disagree wholeheartedly.
The sun was blistering hot, sending beads of sweat streaming down the sides of Samuel Moore’s face, running through the scruffy tangles of his brown beard. His plow horse, tired from the heat and exhaustion, was slowly giving way to the weight of work of the long, summer, farming season. Samuel went to the old graying horse to untie it from the grasp of the rickety rusting plow. He walked the horse to the barn and locked it in it’s warn stuffy stable where it could replenish for the following day of work. He then remembered he needed to go into town for a matter of business.
Before he went into town, he walked back to his humble, although suitable home. He went into his bedroom, opened his oak dresser that was passed down to him by his grandfather, and pulled out a small, black, velvet box which he placed carefully in the confines of his worn pants pocket. He quickly pulled on a new, clean, flannel, shirt, over his strongly built form.
As he walked into town he pondered, I could really use a new young horse one of these days, he also worried about many other things he would soon need to buy in order appease his desires and to take care of all the events that would soon be taking place in his busy life.
He strode casually into the all-purpose store in the center of town, where anyone could find any sort of item that they needed. As he walked into the store the bell on the door jingled.
" Mr. Moore, how are you doing this fine day?" Mr. Avery, the old, friendly, store, clerk asked in the kindest of tones, with a warm grin on his face and a twinkle in his eyes.
"Oh you know, never getting better, never getting worse," Samuel sighed with a small chuckle, "life never seems to get any easier."
"Well I would say as long as you aren’t getting any worse, then you are well off, maybe life isn’t supposed to be easy, maybe it is the reason we are here, to learn how to get through the hard times as well as the easy." Mr. Avery returned a light chuckle. "Can I help you find anything?"
"Thanks, but I think I’m alright..."
"Well if it isn’t Samuel Moore." the voice of an angel floated through the doorway.
Samuel knew who the heavenly voice belonged to instantly, without having to turn around and look, but he turned anyway just so that his eyes could behold the most beautiful sight he had ever seen. There she was, seemingly glowing with light from some unknown source. Her shimmering blonde hair accenting the perfect curve of her beautiful face with glistening, crystal, blue, eyes, naturally rosy pink cheeks and pretty thin lips spreading across a perfect glimmering smile. Samuel could not believe she was there to see him of all people, how could such a beautiful creation even take it upon herself to take a glance in his direction, it seemed thoroughly impossible.
"Rebecca Walker, you get more beautiful every time I see you, you better knock it off or the other girls in town will die from sheer jealousy" Samuel could hardly contain his joy at the sight of her.
"Well aren’t you just the biggest flirt I know. All that flattery won’t help you, you know, I can see right through you." Rebecca tried to say seriously, but laughed anyway not able to help it. "How is farming season coming along?".
"Well as soon as this season is over I will have enough money to make you my wife." He said bravely, yet with a load of confidence in his voice.
"Is that what you think?" she giggled, a big grin and a slight blush spread across her face.
Samuel picked her up in the strongest but gentlest of embraces and spun her around before setting her back on her feet and kissing her lightly on her smooth soft cheek.
"Will you take a walk with me?" he asked quietly.
"Oh I don’t know my father needs me back soon," Rebecca teased, "I am twenty years old and I still have to check with him. I would love to take a walk with you."
They made their way, hand in hand, down to the little brick bridge overlying the small trickling brook bordering the edge of town, the place where they often met to see each other over the past years, where they met each other for the first time when they were only fourteen. They stood on the bridge holding each other, looking off into the distance at the beautiful, slowly setting sun.
"Is this what happiness is?" She closed her eyes and laid her head against his broad shoulder.
He turned to look at her, "You know what? Someday I am going to buy a big beautiful home next to a nice pond, with a swing on the front porch, where we can live happily together."
"I already am happy, just being with you,"she smiled, "I don’t need anything fancy, just you and your love forever." She hugged him, never wanting to let go.
"Marry me Rebecca." he whispered into her ear. Rebecca pulled away to look up into his big brown eyes.
He kneeled down as he pulled the little, black, velvet box from his pocket. He nervously fumbled with the box. "I love you Rebecca, I know that I can’t provide everything for you now, but don’t worry, I will soon. Please, will you marry me?"
"All I need is you, you are all I have ever wanted. I love you," she beamed, "yes, I will marry you."
He stood up and swept her into his arms and kissed her, holding her to him. A surge of bliss ran between them. They looked into each others eyes as all the emotions started to sink in.
"I must get back, my father really will be worried." she said with no real care of the matter. She only wished she could stand on the bridge with her Samuel forever, never having to leave that special feeling of complete love behind.
" I will gave you the world my darling." he proclaimed.
"You already have, and more." she stood on her toes to kiss him one more time before rushing off home to the race of the magnificent setting sun. She turned around one more time and stopped to look at him, just for a moment, before turning around and dancing off into the coming night.
Samuel turned, smiling, looking at the bubbling brook, filled with rainbows of color reflecting from the last glimpses of light, before he set off back to his little home to take in all the joy of the happiest day he would ever know.
u u u u
Winter was rushing on it’s way, as the leaves turned from a deep green to magnificent burst of reds and golds. A wedding date had been set for the following June. The news of the happy couple had traveled so fast, seemingly over night. Every time Samuel was caught in town he could not be spared of a kind congratulations. All the single men in town had entered into a small depression at losing the prettiest girl in town to their friend, and contender.
"You sure are a lucky one Sam." Mark Chaplain, Samuel’s best friend clapped him on the back as they were walking around town together one day, talking about old times, and all the times to come.
"Rebecca is the only lucky, and the best thing that has ever happened to me. Other than her, I am just your run-down of a regular Joe," He laughed, but on the inside he was completely serious, "I have never had anything special other than her."
"What are you talking about?" Mark was baffled, "you have loads of things. You have a decent home, a nice big farm, not to mention before you met Rebecca, all the girls wanted you, heck! You must be one of the best looking guys around. What are you talking about never having anything special? Any person I know, including myself would consider it amazing to be half as lucky as you."
"I guess you can think that." Samuel sighed, not believing a word of it.
"So why are you going to New York?" Mark inquired.
"I am going to get rich, to get a good job, to be somebody," Samuel said honestly, no joking left in his voice. " I want to go earn enough money to keep Rebecca and myself well-off for the next few years. I figure New York is the best place to get a decent Job."
"You know, Rebecca really doesn’t want you to leave." Mark said hesitantly, yet seriously.
"Yeah I do, but in the long run, she will be a lot happier if I go."
"Are you sure it is Rebecca you are trying to please?" Mark’s voice was tinted with a bit of irritation, knowing Samuel’s real reason’s didn’t involve the warefell of Rebecca.
"What are you trying to say?" Samuel’s voice questioning.
"All I am saying is, Rebecca seems content with who you are now, she doesn’t think that you need to go. She thinks that you will be fine with the way things are if you just stay here and work on the farm." he informed Sam in Rebecca’s place.
"Oh so since when have you decided to think for her." his voice raised.
"Okay okay, I didn’t want to make a fuss, I was just saying..."
"I know what I am doing Mark." Sam ended the conversation as they walked the next few paces in silence before dropping the issue and returning to their old joking selves.
u u u u
Samuel and Rebecca were standing on the crowded train platform, saying their goodbyes as his train was getting ready to leave in the next ten minutes.
"How long will you be gone?" Rebecca asked as tears were starting to fill her eyes glistening eyes.
"I will be back sometime hopefully in the spring." he said.
"Don’t go Sam, stay here, we can make it and we will be fine." she pleaded, as though begging for her life right before stepping up to madame guillotine during the french revolution.
"I can’t. I want to make you happy, this is all for you, you must know that."
"You have already made me more happy than I could have ever imagined Sam. Are you sure it’s for me, because you know I don’t need this, you must know that we will be okay. Why are you doing this?" she questioned sadly, through light sobs.
"Because I have to Rebecca, you wouldn’t understand. All my life I have just been a dumb farm boy, I want more than that for us, I want to be somebody."
"You are somebody, to me. You want it more for you, if it were for me you wouldn’t be going." she stated bravely what she truly was feeling inside.
"Choooochoooo!!" the train signaled its soon departure.
"You wouldn’t understand." he said with anger in his voice, and a clenched jaw as he looked away from her. She didn’t understand him, he knew better and he wasn’t going to step down now. He had to do this.
"Please, Please Sam, I’m begging you, don’t go, don’t leave me."Rebecca sobbed, tears creating streams down the sides of her face. "I love you, that is all we need, what if you don’t come back?"
Samuel leaned down and kissed her on the cheek lightly, "I have to, goodbye." He picked up his suit case and boarded the train and sat down in the nearest empty seat, and slid the window open, "I will be back soon, I love you." and then the train lurched as it started down it’s long journey. Leaving Rebecca alone on the platform.
" I love you, my Samuel," she whispered as she watched the train go off into the distance, taking her beloved Samuel away with it, her heart broken.
u u u u
Samuel had been gone for six long weeks. The first day that he had arrived in the busy city of New York was new and exciting. This was hopefully to be the city that he would make his great fortune. He had started working at a printing press, although he didn’t earn much working there, it was a better income than he would be making if he were to be home at the farm working. At a steady ten dollars a day he was starting to save for his and his fiancé’s future together. The printing press would be his temporary job as he studied to become a doctor. When he visited the nearest hospital and talked to one of the most educated and skilled doctors in the country he was informed that if he were to study hard and pass all the required tests he would be able to become a doctor within a year.
"Is there any way that I could do extra studying and get it done in half the amount of time?" He asked Doc. Bentley.
"We are already struggling to get people done within a year. The medical industry is not something that you can take lightly young man, these are human lives we are talking about." Doc. Bentley informed.
"Yes, I know sir. It’s just that I have a fiancé back home, and I promised to be back next spring to marry her."
"That is wonderful, what did you say your name was?"
"Moore, Samuel Moore." Samuel said, hoping that some day he could be more proud of his name and when people heard it they would know the name instantly.
"Ah yes, Mr. Moore I am sorry but there is nothing I can do. Maybe the medical business is not the right thing for you. I am sorry to rush, but I have patients waiting. Good luck and congratulations on your engagement, Good day sir." Doc. Bentley walked out the door, leaving Samuel sitting in his office to contemplate his decisions, as he looked at all the achievements on the doctor’s wall, hoping some day he would have a wall of achievements as well.
No was not an answer. He was going to be a doctor. It would ensure him the best of wealth and stability. He would just have to write to Rebecca and explain to her that it would only be another six months and then he could bring her to New York to be married and live happily together.
It is so good to hear from you. I am glad that everything is going well for you, and that you are accomplishing everything you set out to do. I am so proud of you, but the hours seem to get longer with each day that you are gone. New York is a big step. I don’t know if I can live another six months without you. I thought that you were going to come home and we would live happily here. I have never thought about living anywhere other than Utah, but I will follow you wherever you go because I love you. Please write soon and know that I love you forever and always.
Samuel folded the letter and put it in his shirt pocket and threw his new suit jacket on. He finally started to feel like he was becoming someone in the world. He felt important in his new clothes and walking around proudly in the big city of New York. It had been another four months, May was approaching and he had done considerably well at his studies. Doctor Bentley believed Samuel would become a fine doctor and one day asked him to come to his office to share some big news with him.
"Samuel, you have done really well my boy." Dr. Bentley congratulated his student, and friend. "You are going to be a fine doctor someday, and that is why I want you to be my personal apprentice." Doc. Bentley didn’t ask, he demanded.
"Sir, this is such an honor, I don’t know what to say." Samuel humbly said aghast, he had never imagined this great a fortune would shine his way.
"Well there is no option, you must say yes." he laughed.
"Thank you sir, I couldn’t ask for anything better. Rebecca will be so glad to hear."
"About that, my young Sam. If you are to be my apprentice, which you will be," he smiled, " it is going to take some more time."
"How much time are you thinking?" he asked nervously.
"One year, I want to show you everything, I want you to be the best, next to me of course." Dr. Bentley laughed aloud, proud he could pass on his knowledge of medicine to this great young man.
Samuel was torn. He knew that he needed to get back to Rebecca, but he also didn’t want to give up such an opportunity. Rebecca loves me, it is only another year, these last months have flown by. I will also get a better fortune if I stay, he thought to himself.
"I will do it!" Samuel half shouted with so much pride he believed himself to be a God of luck. There was no way he was going to pass up such an opportunity, nobody would stand in his way.
u u u u
That is so wonderful that you got such a promotion. We are all very proud of you, but another year is a very long time. We are all wishing you the best of luck at home. My dearest Samuel, there is something I need to say, it is very hard for me. Things have changed while you have been gone. I don’t know how much longer I will be able to wait for you, you see Mark and I, well we have been seeing each other a lot lately, and well, he proposed last night. I haven’t given him an answer yet, but Samuel I need you to know that I am seriously considering his offer. Now you know I love you, but you have been gone for so long, and many things have changed. I don’t know if I can wait for you any more. Please don’t change your dreams for me though, I wish you all the best and happiness in life. I do love you darling.
Samuel crunched the paper in his hands and chucked it at the wall of his new apartment he had purchased two weeks before. How could she do this to me? Mark is my best friend. He wondered if he should get the next train out of New York and go home and save her, but that would mean he would lose everything. He dearly loved Rebecca and didn’t want to lose her, yet he dearly loved his new profession. He would just have to keep writing her and persuade her to wait just a little longer so that he could make it home and then come back with her.
u u u u
The apprenticeship had ended, Samuel was a doctor at last. He was on a train rolling down the tracks in the dead of winter, only a few hours away from home. He had only written Rebecca back once since he could not afford to take the time out of his busy rushed schedule. She told him that she would wait a little while if she could, but in the end he had taken his pick and she married Mark the previous March, but she had never written to tell Samuel, she didn’t know how to tell him.
When Samuel stepped off the train onto the platform, he quickly found a cab that would take him into town. He was going to go directly to Rebecca’s house to sweep her in his arms.
When he got to the front door, butterflies filled his stomach as though he was reliving the day that he first fell in love with her. He gently knocked on the door and waited, standing stationary in his tailored suit. A woman came to the door, her mother.
"Oh Samuel... we weren’t expecting you here." she said, confusion spreading across her face.
"Oh I know ma’am, but I wanted to surprise Rebecca, is she here?"
"Haven’t you heard?" she asked, not wanting to spoil anything if he hadn’t heard the news.
"Heard, heard what?" Samuel was now the confused one.
"You better come in." Mrs. Watson led Samuel down the hall to a room, Rebecca’s old bedroom, where he could hear her beautiful voice, as well as others.
Mrs. Watson knocked on the door, "Rebecca, you have a visitor, should I send him in?"
"Yes mother, who is it?" she sweetly questioned, strangely in a weak voice.
Samuel walked through the door no longer able to contain his excitement. He was about to go to her and hug her, but stopped dead in his tracks, pale faced, as if his soul had left him.
Laying on the bed in the middle of the room was an equally shocked, very pregnant, very sick and diminished body of the sweet woman he once knew to be an energetic beautiful woman full of life. Sitting next to the bed grasping her hand, was Mark, looking ever so in love with her, yet there was a glaze of sadness over his eyes, for some unknown uncomprehensible reason.
"Oh my, Samuel, w-w-what are you doing here? I thought you were in New York?" she asked baffled.
"I am finished with my apprenticeship, I I I...I’m a doctor, I came to see you." he couldn’t believe what he was seeing. It was as though he were watching a box labeled, Samuel’s Happiness, being poured down the drain to the depths of endless misery, never to be found.
"That is wonderful, I’m so glad you came." she smiled weakly. She noticed him glancing from Mark to her round stomach. " I guess I forgot to tell you, Mark and I got married last spring, we are having a baby in the next few weeks."
"Yes I see that, um...that is a...wonderful, congratulations. Uh..I better be off." he choked, through all the anger welling up as a big lump at the base of his throat.
"Don’t go so soon, you must tell us all about New York." Rebecca pleaded, but not like she once had when she was full of love with him.
Samuel left the room almost in a sprint. Mrs, Watson went after him.
"Samuel wait!" she cried as they ran onto the porch. "She tried to tell you, she honestly did, but life has been very difficult for her and things have been tough."
"Tough for her? I go for two years and earn her the world and this is how she repays me?!" he screamed.
"You made that choice Samuel. She didn’t want you to go, but you left her alone. She had to move on with her life. Don’t you understand that?" disbelief of Samuels selfishness showing through her eyes.
"I was going to make her the happiest wife, I did everything for her."
"You did everything, except be there for her. She was happy with you Samuel. She loved you more than anything." she informed him.
"She must not have loved me if she is with Mark, and look, to add on to the package she is even baring a child that should have been mine!" his anger was spilling out from every pore in his body.
"Well you left her Sam. You left her alone and she needed to be loved, she didn’t need money, she didn’t need fancy things, she needed love! Mark gives that to her fully he gives her happiness and that is being taken from her." she blubbered through her frustration.
"What ever do you mean? She seems pretty happy to me?" he snarled.
"Samuel, Rebecca is in there dying, she is not going to live to see her child, and all you can do is sit here and worry about yourself. You knew when you left her that you weren’t going for her, you were going for yourself, and now look what you have done, look what you have missed?" with that she stormed in the house slamming the door in Samuel’s face.
He stood there speechless, not knowing wether he should rush in the house and plead forgiveness or to leave her alone with already too much damage done. In the end he left, he couldn’t face her. He went to the nearest bed and breakfast he could find, since he knew that by now his home was gone. He didn’t sleep at all that night, sobbing at his own faults for the first time in his life.
u u u u
Though he had spent the last two years being apprenticed by one of the greatest doctors in the country, in the end his new found skills could not save the person he loved most. Rebecca died in child birth, she never got to see the face of her beautiful baby girl that looked so much like her with beautiful blonde hair and bright blue eyes.
The funeral was held at the cemetery next to the little stream Rebecca and he had shred together. Everyone in town came, giving their condolences to the family, and Mark, holding little Becca Anne sweetly in his arms. Samuel came and stood in the back, apart from everyone, not wanting to be struck up in a conversation. He didn’t have a single tear in his eye, he had no tears left to cry. He was void of any emotion, just a wasted empty space. He hadn’t realized that the ceremony had finished and everyone had left a few hours before until he noticed that the temperature had sufficiently dropped and the sky was turning grey. He walked over to the fresh mound of dirt which held his Rebecca in it’s grasp. He stood there for a while, just standing, watching, as if he were waiting to wake up from the terrible hellish nightmare he had just gone through. He bent down and put a rose on top of the mound and slowly walked away, only turning back to look at her once more, just as she had done a few years before.