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Authors: Janet Tronstad

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Francis looked around for support and sat on the bed.

Flint opened the bag and held up twenty envelopes. Some of the envelopes were white. Some pink. A few ivory. One even had pale green stripes on it. Each one had the number of a year written on it in black ink.

“They're anniversary cards,” Flint said softly as he fanned them out on the bed next to her. “Bought the whole store out. One for each year—and inside is the letter I wrote you in that year.”

“You wrote me?” Francis whispered.

Flint nodded. “I had to.”

“Oh.” Francis brushed a tear from her eye. She tried to focus, to think this new information through, but for once in her life she didn't care about the order of anything. “I thought you'd forgotten me.”

“How could I forget the only woman I've ever loved?” Flint said softly. The tears gave him hope. He would carry this through in any event, but the tears did give him hope.

Flint pulled a long-stemmed yellow rose out of an inner pocket in his parka. It was the only yellow rose to be had in Miles City, and it was a little peaked. Then he dropped to one knee and offered the rose to Francis. “Will you marry me again? This time for good?”

“Oh.” Francis swallowed.

“Is that an ‘oh, yes' or an ‘oh, no'?” Flint asked quietly.

“Yes,” she stammered. “My, yes. It's an ‘oh, yes.”'

Flint reached up and brushed the tears from her eyes before he leaned forward and kissed her. The pure sweetness of it sang inside of him. He didn't deserve someone like Francis.

“I could maybe do something about those socks.”

Francis laughed and touched his cheek. Yes, he was real. “I don't care about the socks.”

“This time let's get married in the church here in front of everyone in Dry Creek,” Flint said. “I want to see my bride walk down that aisle.”

Francis smiled dreamily. “Dry Creek does love a bride.”

“Not half as much as I do,” Flint said, smiling as he bent his head to kiss Francis again. “Not half as much as I do.”

ISBN: 978-1-4268-7190-0

A BRIDE FOR DRY CREEK

Copyright © 2001 by Janet Tronstad

All rights reserved. Except for use in any review, the reproduction or utilization of this work in whole or in part in any form by any electronic, mechanical or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including xerography, photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, is forbidden without the written permission of the editorial office, Steeple Hill Books, 300 East 42nd Street, New York, NY 10017 U.S.A.

All characters in this book have no existence outside the imagination of the author and have no relation whatsoever to anyone bearing the same name or names. They are not even distantly inspired by any individual known or unknown to the author, and all incidents are pure invention.

This edition published by arrangement with Steeple Hill Books.

® and TM are trademarks of Steeple Hill Books, used under license. Trademarks indicated with ® are registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office, the Canadian Trade Marks Office and in other countries.

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BOOK: A Bride for Dry Creek
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