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Reviewer: Marzee Doats Signed [Report This]
Date: 01 Dec 2008 7:33:14 PM Title: The Match


The chatter was interrupted suddenly by a new set of arrivals in the Green's backyard. Everyone fell silent and turned to look. At the edge of the lawn, the Richmond family stood, five figures with five tall shadows falling across the grass. Each stood looking at their rivals, squinting in the late afternoon sun. They were impressive in their football jerseys, hockey sweaters, and polo shirts, a sea of red against the hazy blue sky.

LOL!  Those Richmonds sound like Amazons!  I'm starting to fear for Team Green.


Jake nearly groaned. “You already have strong players. You've got Clark the quarterback, and you've got one of my best deputies. I've got an eight-year-old.”

“Hey!” began Shelby, but the adults were too engrossed in debate.

Oh boy!  I think Dad's in trouble now....



Turning his back so the Richmonds couldn't observe so closely, Jake said through clenched teeth, “This is our year to beat the Richmonds. Team Green's year. It won't be a great victory if team Richmond has a Green on it.”

Jake seems pretty invested, and as they say, pride goeth before the fall....



“Uncle Stanley, you're supposed to stop running when people tag you in touch football,” he said, looking at his uncle with an air of accusation.

“Yeah, if people tag you, not grab you by the ankles,” said Stanley. “I figured, two kids attached to my legs, nothing new, I'll just keep going.”

HA!  Oh, the picture this brings to mind!  The only thing missing is that he didn't call them rugrats. ;-)



“We planned it all out, the day before. We packed everything we'd need to go on our camp out,” she said. “Clark made the sandwiches, because he was old enough to use a butter knife. I brought the campfire songs notebook. And Johnny was in charge of fishing gear.”

Fiona and Clark caught each others' sideways glances and laughed themselves now. “When we finally picked our camping spot, Johnny pulled out a container of worms he'd dug up. He thought we were all set.” Fiona giggled again, and her cousin flashed her an irritated look.

“Meanwhile of course, no one knew where you were, everyone was ready to put a search party together,” said Gail, with just a hint of a reprimand in her voice, though she was on the verge of laughter herself.

“Mimi was afraid you'd been eaten by coyotes or kidnapped by pissed off refugees or something,” said Stanley.

“No I wasn't,” she said, playfully swatting Stanley's head. “But I was very concerned that our darling children were lost.”

“We weren't lost,” protested Johnny, to further chuckles across the porch. “We would have stayed there overnight. If Deputy Taylor hadn't found us.”

Shelby had vacated her seat on the floor and come to stand by her mother. “You really thought you could use worms? To go fishing? In the middle of the field?”

I love the mixture of humor (only Clark was old enough to use a butterknife) and the hint at world conditions (coyotes or pissed off refugees) in this story, but the kicker is that they were going fishing in a field!  I'm glad Jimmy found them (or was it Woody?) though of course, they were not lost. :-)



We can enjoy the night. Probably better if we go out and really see it,” she said, gently tugging his arm herself now. He resisted at first, but finally allowed her to pull him to his feet.

“You know, that football just tired me out. I'm not as young as I used to be,” protested Jake. “It might just do me in to hear Stanley brag about his touchdown one more-”

“We won't be able to hear Stanley,” said Heather.

Jake stopped protesting. “You're not suggesting-”

She grinned. “No one said we had to catch up with them to go for a walk tonight.”

He look scandalized for a moment, but the corners of his mouth tugged into a smile. “I can live with that.”

“Oh, you can live with that?” she said in a teasing voice. “Okay.”

He slipped his hand into hers. They crossed the lawn, their fingers interlaced between them and their heads close together. Their gentle banter, and laughter as they recalled Thanksgiving walks of the past, mixed with the other sounds in the evening air as night descended on Jericho.

Aaaaaahhhhhhhhh! :-)  Wonderful Jake and Heather mush, and what a lovely echo of the Johnston and Gail moment at the end of Waiting. 

Excellent job, Penny.  My little holiday-loving heart is immensely satisfied.  Thanks for sharing!

Author's Response:

Poor Team Green does seem to be divided into those who realize that the Richmonds do resemble Amazons and those who are unwilling to accept defeat. Unfortunately, the most invested did take a bit of a fall here. But most of them would agree they had fun, I think.

I enjoyed blending in some humour in this part, after the more reflective and emotional parts that came before. Though this wasn't Team Green's year, I'm sure they'll all be laughing and remembering this one on the porch in the years to come.

Thanks for reading this story, and for all your comments!

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