Full of Grace (42)

A lovely holiday weekend it was, but now we are back to the norm – at least for a few more weeks until Christmas, and the spectacular end to my story. I hope to have the story ready for publication in a novella format by Christmas. More information will follow in the upcoming weeks. Until then, enjoy. And thanks as always for stopping by. 

˜* * *

The day is almost over, Mary reminds herself, as she prepares the evening meal. She wipes the sweat from her brow and plates the roasted meat. Setting it carefully on the table, she stops to make sure everything is perfect – for Joseph, but for Miriam as well. The woman was difficult; nothing seemed pleased her. The situation wasn’t so bad when Joseph was home, but now that he had returned to work after the completion of their marriage week, she was left to fend for herself. Mary would rise early, clean the house on her own, go to the well and prepare the food – all in hopes of having Miriam accept her. Nothing helped though. Miriam always had a sarcastic comment ready. She had even accused her of trapping Joseph in marriage. Mary had tried to argue, but it was useless; the woman wouldn’t listen.

Mary sighs. The whole situation was frustrating, but she had to deal with it. Miriam was her mother-in-law and deserving of honor. Certainly she would be dishonoring her if she went to Joseph and complained. She was supposed to be a helpmeet, not a burden.

A sudden uneasiness in her midsection distracts her from her thoughts. She rests her hand on her belly and takes in a deep breath until the discomfort subsides. She rubs her belly; she is starting to show. Soon enough she would look like her doda did…giving her mother-in-law another reason to despise her. She is flustered by the thought, but quickly forgets about it when Joseph walks in. She smiles and rushes to his side. He returns her smile and puts his arm around her.

“Such a warm welcome,” he states.

Mary blushes.

“I’m glad you’re home,” she admits, shyly, truthfully.

“I’m glad to be home,” he responds quietly. Their eyes meet and for a moment, there is something ‘unspoken’ between them.

Then Miriam walks in from her room.

“Joseph,” she says and moves between him and Mary. Joseph kisses her cheek and greets her, leaving Mary standing off to the side. Miriam walks him over to the basin so he can wash his hands before they sit down to eat. Mary is upset to be set aside so easily, but she reminds herself that, at the very least, Miriam’s focus is off of her. This was enough to be grateful for; and with Joseph present, the woman wouldn’t openly attack her.

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