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Authors: Lauraine Snelling

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Believing the Dream

BOOK: Believing the Dream
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Believing
the Dream

Books by

Lauraine Snelling

Golden Fill Collection One
*
Golden Filly Collection Two
*

Secret Refuge
(3 in 1 )

D
AKOTA
T
REASURES

Ruby • Pearl

Opal • Amethyst

D
AUGHTERS OF
B
LESSING

A Promise for Ellie • Sophie’s Dilemma

A Touch of Grace • Rebecca’s Reward

H
OME TO
B
LESSING

A Measure of Mercy

No Distance Too Far

A Heart for Home

R
ED
R
IVER OF THE
N
ORTH

An Untamed Land

A New Day Rising

A Land to Call Home

The Reaper’s Song

Tender Mercies

Blessing in Disguise

R
ETURN TO
R
ED
R
IVER

A Dream to Follow • Believing the Dream

More Than a Dream

*
5 books in each volume

LAURAINE
SNELLING

Believing
the Dream

Believing the Dream
Copyright © 2002
Lauraine Snelling

Cover by Dan Thornberg, Design Source Creative Services

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means—electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise—without the prior written permission of the publisher. The only exception is brief quotations in printed reviews.

Published by Bethany House Publishers
11400 Hampshire Avenue South
Bloomington, Minnesota 55438

Bethany House Publishers is a division of
Baker Publishing Group, Grand Rapids, Michigan

Printed in the United States of America

ISBN 978–0-7642–0828–7

The Library of Congress has cataloged the original edition as follows:

Snelling, Lauraine.
       Believing the dream / by Lauraine Snelling.
             p. cm. — (Return to Red River ; 2)
       ISBN 0–7642–2318–6 (pbk.)
       1. College students—Fiction. 2. Journalists—Fiction. 3. Young men—Fiction.
I. Title.
       PS3569.N39         B45       2002
       813'.54—dc21

2002002574

DEDICATION

Believing the dream is dedicated
to all my readers who want to know
what happens next with the Bjorklunds.
So do I.
Thank you for the opportunity to find out.
Blessed to be blessings,
all of us.

LAURAINE SNELLING is an award-winning author of over 60 books, fiction and nonfiction for adults and young adults. Her books have sold over two million copies. Besides writing books and articles, she teaches at writers’ conferences across the country. She and her husband, Wayne, have two grown sons, a bassett named Chewy, and a cockatiel watch bird named Bidley. They make their home in California.

Bjorklund Family Tree

CONTENTS

BJORKLUND FAMILY TREE

CHAPTER ONE

CHAPTER TWO

CHAPTER THREE

CHAPTER FOUR

CHAPTER FIVE

CHAPTER SIX

CHAPTER SEVEN

CHAPTER EIGHT

CHAPTER NINE

CHAPTER TEN

CHAPTER ELEVEN

CHAPTER TWELVE

CHAPTER THIRTEEN

CHAPTER FOURTEEN

CHAPTER FIFTEEN

CHAPTER SIXTEEN

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

CHAPTER NINETEEN

CHAPTER TWENTY

CHAPTER TWENTY-ONE

CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO

CHAPTER TWENTY-THREE

CHAPTER TWENTY-FOUR

CHAPTER TWENTY-FIVE

CHAPTER TWENTY-SIX

CHAPTER TWENTY-SEVEN

CHAPTER TWENTY-EIGHT

CHAPTER TWENTY-NINE

CHAPTER THIRTY

CHAPTER THIRTY-ONE

CHAPTER THIRTY-TWO

CHAPTER THIRTY-THREE

CHAPTER ONE

Northfield, Minnesota
November 1893

Perhaps today there’d be a letter from home—from Anji.

Thorliff Bjorklund stared out at the snow-blanketed yard behind the office of the
Northfield News
. Yesterday the mud matched his mood, and today, well, how could anyone feel like burnt oatmeal when the world sported a new coat of white? He turned back to his room, made the bed, and grabbed his books off the desk. If he didn’t hurry, they’d be late for school, and the teachers at St. Olaf College did not approve of tardiness.

With the red muffler around his neck that his little sister, Astrid, had knit for him, gloves knit by Bestemor Bridget, and a black wool coat sewn by his mother, he was a walking testimony to the love of the folks back home. He squinted his eyes against the sparkling world, eyes of such an intense shade of blue that many people who knew referred to them as “Bjorklund” eyes. So why didn’t they write?

His breath formed white clouds in front of him as his long legs made short distance of the blocks to the Rogerses’ house, home of his employer and benefactor, his wife, Annabelle, and his daughter, Elizabeth, Thorliff ’s constant sparring partner. If he said black, she said red. His jaw squared at the thought, and he shook his head.
Women, how do you understand them? Anji, how do I understand you?
One minute he wanted to write and pour out his love for her, the next he swore never to write again—not after the telegram he’d received from her.

More than a month had passed since she told him not to come home. She didn’t want or need his help caring for her injured father.

He rang the doorbell, stamping his feet to remove the snow.

“Good morning, Thorliff. You’re late.” Elizabeth Rogers, her wavy hair bundled tight in a crocheted snood, beckoned him inside. “You can eat your breakfast on the way. Father has gone to harness the horse to the sleigh.” Her gray eyes snapped with challenge, and a smile had yet to call the dimple in her right cheek out from hiding.

“Snow too deep for you?” He knew the barb would hit home.

“If you had to wear wool skirts and layers of petticoats, you wouldn’t ask such a silly question.” Her laughter said she knew the darkening red of his face was due to her offhand comment of her unmentionables. She led the way back to the kitchen, where Cook handed Thorliff a cup of steaming coffee.

“God dag.”

“Mange takk.” Thorliff had removed his gloves on the way down the hall and now cupped both hands around the hot mug. “This feels as good as it tastes.” Only with Cook did he ever speak Norwegian now, and that rarely. While there were classes at school still conducted in Norwegian, they had to do with the language, history, or literature of Norway. All else was taught in English.

“I made you a packet to go.” Tall and spare as the words she used, Cook handed him a cloth-wrapped package. “There’s enough there for your dinner too.”

At a shout from outside, Thorliff took a couple quick sips from his coffee cup and handed it back to her. “Takk.”

He held the door for Elizabeth and followed her out, flicking a wave to Cook as he closed it. The cold bit his nose as soon as he stepped off the porch.

“Good morning, Thorliff. I hope that cantankerous furnace kept you warm last night.” Phillip Rogers, his straight nose and high cheeks already red with cold, finished tucking the wool robe around his daughter’s legs. “Coldest we’ve had this year, and along with all this snow, I thought you two could use a ride up the hill this morning.” He climbed into the front seat of the sleigh, tucking his heavy wool greatcoat over his legs.

“Thank you, sir. I added coal to the furnace before I left and set the damper on half. The water was frozen in my pitcher this morning.”

The horse snorted, sending out a white cloud, and picked up a high-stepping trot that set the harness bells jingling.

The sound only reminded Thorliff of home. This morning everything reminded him of home, and here he thought he’d gotten over that. When they hit the grade going up to Manitou Heights and the college, the horse dug in, slowing to a walk so as not to slip.

“Good thing I had him shod last week. Put the winter calks on his shoes.” Phillip turned to smile at his riders. “You two sure are quiet this morning.”

“I have a philosophy recitation first period.” Elizabeth spoke from her nest in the rear seat. “I feel that if I don’t hold my head just right, all that I memorized will drain right out.”

Phillip laughed. “That’s my girl.” He turned to Thorliff. “And you, son, what about you?”

Thorliff half shrugged. Confessing that all his thoughts since rising had to do with home seemed extremely inappropriate. After all, the last thing he wanted to do was offend his host and employer. “I have an idea for a story for the paper.”

“Good, what’s that?”

“What if you ran a contest for a Christmas story, the winner or top three or some such being published Christmas week? I thought maybe you could have different divisions, according to age, you know.” He sent Mr. Rogers a sideways glance, hoping for some sign of approbation. When he received a nod, he continued. “I thought perhaps you could ask some teachers from Carleton and St. Olaf to be the judges.”

BOOK: Believing the Dream
3.35Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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