They passed a lake at the foot of the rise, with water so inviting Cecile wished for a swim, and just beyond, the thick stand of trees Walt had talked of so many times. Her heart fluttered with excitement. They were finally home.
The team’s shoulder muscles bulged with effort to get the loaded wagon to the crest of the hill. Once there, Walt reined the horses. “Well, here we are.” His gaze trained on the buildings below.
Cecile blinked her eyes in disbelief. This couldn’t be it. There was no house, just a deserted shack with a terribly rundown barn. There had to be a mistake. She waited for Walt to put an end to his joke. He didn’t, just snapped the reins and set the wagon in motion, stopping in front of the ugliest structure Cecile had ever seen.
She sat frozen to the wagon seat and looked around. Prairie grass had grown up to the doorway, and in place of glass windows, weather-beaten shutters barely hung on to the aging wood of what Walt called a house. The previous owner had added on a makeshift porch that tilted away from the house and looked unsafe. Her mind spun, remembering his description of his purchase. There were rolling hills in the distance, trees, and they did pass a small lake on the way in, but this couldn’t possibly be what he’d been so excited about. Tears burned the back of her eyes.
Walt jumped off the wagon and reached to help her down. He looked so happy, she prayed her disappointment didn‘t show. She fixed a smile on her face and leaned over into his waiting arms.
Despite her attempt at feigned pleasure, he must have detected something amiss.
I guess you're surmised that Walt's description of his ranch doesn't exactly fit what his new bride expects. I can only imagine her shock. :)
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