A Place of Peace
    Although Sunday was an off-Sunday, meaning no formal community worship service, the day was still considered holy. Miriam and Edna had spent some time reading from the Bible and singing hymns together after breakfast.
    After devotions, Edna had retreated to her room for a nap, and Miriam was concerned by how exhausted she’d appeared.
    While reading the Bible, Miriam’s thoughts kept wandering. She found herself analyzing Beth Anne’s comment about everyone needing to heal. She couldn’t stop herself from wondering if Beth Anne had been speaking of Timothy.
    A knock on the door pulled Miriam from her thoughts. Placing the Bible on the end table beside her, she headed to the door and wrenched it open, squealing when her eyes fell on Hannah and her children.
    “Hannah!” She embraced her sister. “It’s so good to see you!”
Hannah returned the hug before directing her children into the cabin. “Say hello to your
    Miriam hugged each of the three children and then led them to the kitchen, where she pulled a container from the refrigerator. “You all can be my guinea pigs and try these sand tarts.”
    “Guinea pigs?” Ian asked. “What do you mean?”
    Miriam chuckled to herself while setting the cookies on napkins. “It means you’ll test the cookies for me.”
    “Oh,” Mary said, grimacing. “So we’ll tell you if they’re bad.”
    “I hope they aren’t bad.” She patted Mary’s head while handing her the napkin full of sand tarts. She then handed napkins to Lena Joy and Ian.
    “How about you
take them out back and eat them, so
and I can talk,” Hannah said. “Play nicely outside.”
    They filed outside, and Miriam tapped one of the kitchen chairs. “Sit. I’ll bring us some tea and cookies.”
Hannah lowered herself into the chair.
    Miriam brought the tea and cookies to the table and sat across from her. “Abby went home Friday. She wanted me to tell you good-bye.”
    “That’s a shame.” Hannah frowned. “I’m sorry I didn’t get to talk to her more. We spoke briefly at the funeral.”
    “She had some emergencies come up at work, and she had to leave right away. She’s married to that job, you know?” Miriam sipped her tea and then smiled. “I have exciting news.”
    Hannah snatched a cookie from the plate. “What is it?”
    “I’m staying for two weeks.”
    Hannah squeezed her hand. “I’m so pleased! What led you to the decision?”
has been exhausted and in a great deal of pain from her arthritis. I want to help her out, and I want to spend more time with you and try to work out things with
if that’s possible.”
    Hannah nodded, chewing the cookie. “This is delicious, Miriam. You did a
I’m baking them for Beth Anne.
makes desserts for the bakery for extra money.”
    “I think Beth Anne will be pleased.” Hannah sipped the tea. “As for
he’ll come around. I think you should visit later in the week. I’ll go with you, if you’d like.”
    Miriam nodded, biting into a cookie. “I may take you up on that. He intimidates me.”
    Hannah waved off the comment. “Don’t let him. He’s really a big puppy under that hard exterior.”
    “I’m not so sure.” Miriam shook her head. “I never did anything right in his eyes. I never did the laundry correctly, my grades were never good enough, and I messed up the Henderson job. I was the black sheep, so to speak. He was probably
when I left.”
    “That’s so far from the truth, Miriam.” Hannah touched her hand. “He missed you after you left.”
    Miriam snorted. “Please, Hannah. There’s no need to lie to make me feel better.”
    “I’m not lying!” Hannah tapped the table for emphasis. “You ask Lilly. He talked about you incessantly for a long time, saying how there was no need for you to leave. I think his ego was hurt, but he missed you.”
    “How’s Lena Joy?” Miriam asked, needing

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