For today’s Sunday Story Sample, I wanted to post a scene from Kent Ashton’s Backstory. 🙂
As Kent entered his house, his father hurried into the entryway and beckoned for him to enter the parlor. “We’ve been waiting for you.”
“We?” Kent asked as he shrugged out of his coat and handed it to the butler.
“Yes. Now, come. Don’t keep Mister Johnson waiting.”
Hesitant, he headed for the parlor, wondering what business Mr. Johnson wanted with him. Knowing his father, this would probably be an unpleasant surprise. He took a deep breath as he approached him.
Mr. Johnson set down his glass of sherry and motioned for the chair across from him. “Kent! Good, you’re here. Sit down and have a glass. We have much to celebrate.”
“We do?” Kent asked, glancing at his father who shut the parlor door.
“Now, don’t tell me you aren’t a little suspicious of what your father and I have been doing.” Mr. Johnson chuckled as he poured Kent a glass and held it to him. “Though, I’ll admit I’m not at all surprised to hear you changed your mind about Miss Statesman. No one could deny the way you and my daughter got along so amiably while you entertained us with your music.”
He turned his gaze to his father who gestured for him to accept the glass Mr. Johnson was handing him. With a tentative smile, he took the glass. “I’m afraid I don’t understand. What are you talking about?”
His father laughed and settled beside Mr. Johnson. “Even now, he’s too shy to tell you. Kent, my son, I took the liberty of seeking courtship for Rebecca on your behalf.”
Kent almost dropped his glass. “You what?”
“There’s no need to be embarrassed,” Mr. Johnson quickly assured him. “I heartily approve of the match. You and Rebecca will make a splendid couple. I understand you need to end your courtship with Miss Statesman and give a small space of time before you ask Rebecca to court her. These things needn’t be rushed.”
Kent swallowed and looked at his father. How could his father do this to him?
His father drank some sherry. “You ought to tell him the other good news.”
“Oh, yes!” Mr. Johnson set his glass down and rubbed his hands together. “I have decided to sign you and your father up as partners with me in a couple of investments. You’ll need to keep the details to yourself since we don’t want everyone jumping on them, but they’re guaranteed to be fruitful in as little as a year.”
“And we’ll go to the bank tomorrow to work on purchasing them,” Kent’s father added. “I’ll pick you up in the carriage after school so we can head straight over there.”
“But… I…” Kent struggled to find a way to tell Mr. Johnson he couldn’t court Rebecca, but his father shot him a piercing look and turned to him.
“You’ll have to forgive my son,” his father told Mr. Johnson. “I think our news has left him speechless.”
“It’s to be expected, given his age,” Mr. Johnson replied. “I’ll never forget how uncertain I was when I was seventeen. It’ll be alright, Kent. As you get older, you’ll be more confident.”
His father chuckled and motioned to the door. “You may be excused.”
He placed the glass on the table. He had to think of something and he had to think of something quick because if he didn’t, his future would be unpleasant. With a polite good-bye to Mr. Johnson and his father, he left the room.