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Tuesday, January 15, 2013
In Brist's Time - Chapter 7
Cream! You’re here too?” Brist was both dismayed and pleased at
the site of her beloved horse. Cream nodded as if she were answering
Brist’s question. “I’m sorry, baby. I didn’t mean to neglect
you! If I had known that you were here too, I would have tried to
tend to your needs. Can you forgive me?” Brist talked to Cream in a
again nodded in answer to Brist’s question. She also punctuated her
forgiveness by burying her head in Brist’s neck as if giving her a
hug. The entire Evans family burst out laughing.
talk to your horse?” Nicholas laughed.
so?” Brist said slowly, as if talking to a person who was low in
It’s not as if the dumb beast can understand you!” Nicholas
stated, still in amusement.
snorted her disapproval of the statement.
not very good with horses are you?” Brist stated more than asked.
best there is!” Nicholas boasted with a silly grin.
with horses!” Richard heckled.
it little brother,” Nicholas warned playfully.
“In our family, Jonathan and Morgan
are the best with horses, but I wouldn’t count on them to win any
races,” Richard informed Brist. She gave an example of a brilliant
smile upon hearing Jonathan’s next statement.
can win a race over anyone here,” he boasted.
you sure about that?” Brist challenged, an overly sweet smile on
I am,” he assured her with every ounce of male pride that had been
bred into him.
you won’t mind racing me then, will you?” Brist cast him a
mischievous smile that should have warned him that she would win no
matter what he thought.
if you promise not to be upset when I win,” Jonathan agreed
promise not to be upset when I
win?” Brist countered. Jonathan grunted his disbelief that a woman
could beat him in a race.
not now. We are going shopping,” Regina pouted, dismayed that a
woman would challenge a man to a race.
not? It would only take me a few minutes to win,” Brist stated
charmingly as she mounted her horse. Regina gasped.
must ride side saddle, someone get her a side saddle to ride upon,”
Regina insisted in a near panic.
I come from, women no longer have to ride side saddle. In fact, I’ve
only done it once or twice just for fun,” Brist explained, a little
bit of stubborn independence coloring her words.
to tell you the truth, I’d prefer not to ride like this myself, but
the proper way to do things. Please have your horse resaddled.”
Regina smiled at Brist expectantly.
mum, but we don’t have another saddle for the horse, let alone a
side saddle,” Nicholas explained with a helpless shrug.
very well! We shall just have to buy another while we’re shopping,”
Regina exclaimed, then sighed in defeat.
bet Jonathan wins the race!” Morgan said, enthusiastically
reverting the topic back to the prior, much more exciting one.
“Not a chance!”
to make a wager?” Nicholas questioned, warming up to the idea of
this prideful girl embarrassing herself.
much?” Brist grinned at the prospect of gaining extra money.
dollars says that Jonathan will win,” Nicholas replied, positive
that no woman alive could beat a man in a fair race. It's
easy money, he
thought. Brist nodded her consent.
add 50 to the pot, for Jonathan,” Thomas said.
me in.” Lucas added.
me.” Gregory said, making it – including Jonathan – 5 out of
the 8 brothers wagering on Jonathan.
“Well I, for one, will stand by my
word. I said that I wouldn’t count on Jonathan to win any races,
and so I’m placing my money on Brist,” Richard said.
Morgan, and Curtis would be taking part
in this bet, but as the only two brothers under the age of 18, they
didn’t have enough money to do so. However, that did not stop them
from watching with interest as each participant in the bet handed
their money over to their father for fair disbursement.
right then,” Jonathan said confidently. “We will race across the
field, around that big tree in the distance, and back. My brothers
will make a line to represent the finish line. Anything wrong?”
Jonathan asked upon seeing the grim expression on Brist’s face.
that we’ll be racing across the family graveyard,” Brist said,
staring at the tall, fat, incredibly huge tree that only possessed
it’s not, or rather not yet, I would guess,” Jonathan informed
makes sense, since the first person buried there is alive and well
right before my very eyes,” Brist told Jonathan, then glanced down
so that she wouldn’t give away just exactly who it was. Nicholas
cleared his throat, deciding to redirect the morbid curiosity that
had suddenly entered his mind.
“Let us line up and get this race
over with already. I’m already making plans on how to spend my
share of the winnings,” he said.
soon as everyone was in position, he announced that they should begin
on three, then proceeded to count to that very number. Brist kicked
Cream into a slow gallop to assess Jonathan’s riding ability. He
handled his horse with a passable ability, but he wasn’t sitting
correctly for the horse to reach optimum speed without his falling.
He was also confusing his horse with slightly conflicting signals. He
had managed to stay two yards ahead while Brist had been assessing
his abilities, but now Brist gave Cream a signal to speed up, and
passed him quite easily.
was 5 yards ahead of him by the time she rounded the tree. She felt
sorry that he had to race her when he was obviously not able to match
her level of skill. She considered slowing to allow him to make the
race appear close, but every one of these men assumed that women were
unable to do anything, and so she decided against her more noble plan
and opted to show them just what a woman could do. Grinning
devilishly, she told Cream to go as fast as she wanted too, knowing
quite well that Cream loved to gallop wildly.
was in a similar mood and wanted to prove that she was no dumb beast.
So, she carried Brist over the finish line mere moments after
Jonathan had rounded the tree in the distance. Then, since both horse
and rider were in such high spirits – and seemed to read each
other’s mind and
both felt like showing off – they performed their own special
victory dance. They had created it together after they had been
practicing for a show one day.
pranced around in circles, adding as much smug attitude as she could
before it became downright rude. Meanwhile, Brist held her arms up
twirling one down with a flourish to rest on her stomach as she
bowed, then raising her arm to join the other once again so that she
could repeat the motion with the other arm. Brist’s smile glowed
with triumphant glee. Everyone there looked shocked, but Richard
recovered first and burst out laughing.
show! Well done!” He praised the woman who had just earned him
“Is there anyone who still thinks
that a woman can’t beat a man in a race?” Brist questioned. Each
man tactfully kept his mouth shut and suddenly became very interested
in grooming himself. Jonathan finally finished the race and came to a
stop along side Brist.
was an unfair race, you obviously possess ten times the skill I have.
I don’t think that the bet should be considered valid,” he argued
charmingly, trying to keep possession over his money.
“Mismatched skill or not, I still
won. I even tried to tell you that I would do so, but you did not
believe me. So, the bet is certainly valid. However, if in the future
should we race, I will personally see to it that you have been
properly trained in the equestrian arts, and therefore may actually
have a chance of winning,” Brist told him graciously.
David handed her the portion of the
money from the bet that she was entitled to. Brist quickly placed the
money in the most convenient spot she could think of at the moment,
between her cleavage and her skin-tight vest. Then, at Regina’s
gasp of dismay, she readjusted the shawl that she had to wear to
cover up her improper outfit. Brist giggled mentally at Regina’s
attempts to maintain propriety, and was grateful that she had managed
to slip the two hundred dollars David had given her earlier into the
very same spot without being seen.
now that you’ve raced, and done such an admirable job of winning,
can we please be on our way?” Regina asked sweetly, barely able to
conceal her impatience.
all means, let’s go shop!” Brist said cheerily.
glanced at her husband, signaling him to lead the way. The twins
followed them closely. Brist began the trip by following the twins,
and she was followed by all of the Evans’ sons in no particular
led them in the general direction of Treepass, and the trip was
conducted in a lighthearted manner with Morgan and Curtis ribbing
Jonathan humorously about losing to a woman. The twins provided a
constant song of giggles in response to their brothers’ teasing
comments, which mingled pleasantly with the laughter that tumbled out
of everyone’s mouths.
Brist slowed her horse, allowing each
person that was behind her to pass her up, as she contemplated this
ancestral family of hers. She decided almost immediately that she
might have really liked having nearly a dozen siblings. Especially
if they were as close as these siblings were. They shared a bond that
went beyond mere family, just as she had always been bonded with
Drew. She was beginning to understand why Regina had allowed herself
to conceive this many children.
Her mom had told her many times that
she had always wanted exactly two children – a boy and a girl –
and she had gotten her wish. Her father was happy with the results as
well. It wasn’t that her parents didn’t love children – they
owned an orphanage to house and educate unfortunate children – but
they had little to no time for the children that they had. Far more
interested in business, they had no desire to create even more.
thought that there was another reason that this family seemed even
more bonded than any normal family, but she couldn’t quite explain
it. She wondered if maybe it had something to do with the fact that
David and Regina acted vastly different than her parents.
instance, they participated in their children’s jokes, and their
laughter seemed genuine, not the type that one gives when they’re
expected to laugh. Also, they listened to their children when they
spoke. Not just a “that’s nice” kind of listening, but an “I’m
truly interested in what you’re saying” kind of listening.
that Brist’s parents never laughed or listened to them, but they
had a way of always thinking about some business detail in the back
of their minds that made them never be truly present and sincere when
dealing with their children.
caught Brist’s attention when his horse wandered off to munch on an
enticing patch of grass and wouldn’t listen to Nicholas’ shouts
to remain on course.
“I say, he doesn’t seem to be
paying you any mind. Does he Nicky?” Gregory said, trying not to
fall off his horse because he was laughing so hard.
Nicholas dismounted, firmly took hold
of the reins, and used his sheer brute strength to drag his horse
away from the now half-eaten patch of grass.
would have helped him with his seemingly impossible task, but seeing
him reminded her of Muskles, and she was struck again by how much he
really did look exactly like her ex-boyfriend... only he was older.
She wondered just exactly how old he was as she admired his
similarities and differences from her ex.
was taller, more powerfully built, and his hair was slightly longer.
His jaw line was also more defined, but other than that, his chin
length dark brown hair, his crystal blue eyes, and his face structure
were exactly the same. Well… his extremely well-fitting clothing
differed from Muskles too, Brist admitted as she allowed her eyes to
roam his tight pants and the obviously muscular legs inside them.
a hold of yourself!
She ordered herself mentally. She continued her mental conversation.
Even if he is an exact
copy of Muskles, only older with a great sense of humor… caring
enough to help a stranger passed out on his property, apparently
single, and so damn good looking! Hell he is everything I want in a
man, God has basically taken Jesse Muskles and improved him, all for
attempt to control her thoughts failed miserably until she reminded
herself that he was her ancestor. Hmm,
I wonder… is it still incest if I sleep with a great grandfather
who’s been dead for almost two hundred years. Wait! That sounds
even worse than plain old incest! Think about this rationally, he’s
related, and therefore off limits.
but he has to be, like, seven generations removed, and that has to
pretty much mean that the same rules no longer apply. I mean if a
person can marry their 2nd cousin, which is only two times removed,
then surely 7 generations is better. Brist! Stop thinking about this
man in bed! Once
again Brist ordered her mind to regain control.
While she had been
talking herself in and out of his bed, the object of her thoughts had
regained control of his horse, and then revisited his prior
observance of her. In his opinion, she was quite a character. She
acted like no woman aught to, but it was charming. Which was exactly
what she had done to his family, charmed them all.
Maybe she really was
just a highly trained thief, working to somehow rob them blind. On
the other hand, she was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. If
his parents hadn’t been in the room when she had kissed him this
morning, he didn’t know what might have happened. Nicholas wondered
why he was so hot for her? He currently had two different mistresses;
one in his town home in London and one in his flat in Paris.
eyes are very expressive,
he thought to himself. Just
now, she’s trying to figure something out, and it must have
something to do with that fellow she calls Muskles, for she’s
looking directly at me.
he knew what Brist was really thinking, he might have tried to come
up with an excuse for the two of them to return home… alone. Just
then, her puzzled eyes cleared up, and he found himself lost in their
direct eye contact. Brist watched his eyes watch hers and was
fascinated by their crystal blue purity.
Raven called as she dropped back to join them at the rear of the
party, effectively breaking the spell that they had been enchanted
“Yes?” He answered
uncomfortable, may I ride with you?” She asked. Brist answered for
wonder you’re uncomfortable, sit up straight, take a firm grasp on
the reins,” she advised the girl.
I sit straight, then I will fall off the horse,” Raven voiced her
not going to fall,” Brist assured her.
I am,” Raven pouted. Brist would have proceeded to give the girl
lessons in riding a horse, but Nicholas didn’t allow her the
here.” He reached for Raven and pulled her onto his lap.
you Nicky.” Raven smiled at her eldest brother in adoration. In
return, Nicholas gave her an affectionate squeeze. Brist shook her
head slightly at the way he encouraged her to be a dependent female,
but thought the gesture was sweet anyway.
the party reached the edge of their property.
trees are different,” Brist murmured.
How so?” Lucas asked.
hard to explain, there will be a wall of trees right about here,”
wall of trees you say? Well Nicholas, do you still think there’s
nothing to her story?” David asked his obviously still skeptical
son. “There’s no other way that she could have known about that.”
could do nothing but gape at Brist. As much as he hated to admit it,
there really was no way that she could have known about his secret
plans to have a wall of trees surround his property. He had a detail
of slaves that he knew could be trusted not to speak of his plans
working on the north and south walls, having finished the west wall
already, and soon they would start on the east wall. That was the
side that they would need to put a hidden entrance in.
I ask a question that’s been bothering me for a while now?” Brist
course,” he permitted genially.
we’re merely going shopping, then why do all you men have guns on
you?” Brist grinned mischievously. “What? Are we going to rob
most certainly are not!” Regina exclaimed, offended by the very
“We need our riffles to defend
ourselves from the thieves that lurk in the forest,” Lucas answered
Brist’s question promptly, hoping to impress the beautiful woman
from the future.
not just have the police arrest them?” Brist wondered.
police force is limited, highly incompetent, and would probably
expect us to handle them ourselves anyway,” David informed her.
there a lot of them?”
hard to be certain,” Lucas responded, again trying to impress her.
Brist barely had time to smile at him in thanks before a voice rang
out from the forest.
down off your horses and throw down your guns!” It commanded. Brist
wondered why that voice sounded so familiar. The feeling that she had
heard it somewhere before nagged at the back of her mind. The entire
party came to a stop.
like last time, we will not surrender our weapons or our valuables.
You will have to fight us for them!” David called back to the
lone figure on horseback appeared before them. Brist’s jaw dropped
when she saw the man who now sat proudly on his horse in front of
them. It was an older, taller, and downright more gorgeous version of
Randy. Brist smiled in appreciation of yet another handsome man to
look at. Is every man
this gorgeous in this time?
Nicholas noticed her
smile and was caught off guard by a pang of jealousy that was
intensified when he saw the brigand return her smile. His jealousy
immediately turned to suspicion, and he began to entertain thoughts
that Brist was actually a member of the band of thieves. The man
attempting to attain their possessions had actually been smiling to
show them that he was confident that he would be victorious, and
merely reflected Brist’s positive attention back upon her.
time will be vastly different from before. You will obey or you won’t
have a chance to fight. If you will note, my men are hidden amongst
the trees, and each one has his gun pointed at a different person in
your party. If you do not do as I say, I will give the command for
them to begin shooting you one by one. I assure you that you will be
unable to defend yourselves.” The man smiling at Brist explained
the situation for the family so that they would be more inclined to
cooperate this time.
Come out of hiding and fight like real men!” Lucas shouted. A shot
rang out from the forest, shooting Lucas, and Brist saw a flicker of
rage pass over the older image of Randy’s eyes. She correctly
assumed that he was upset that a shot had been fired with out his
The twins and their mother screamed as
Lucas fell from his horse.