Forgotten Trails(43)

By: Bonnie R. Paulson

MT had made it painfully clear Rachiah and Damon would never be allowed.

Rachiah placed her hand on Damon’s knee. She leaned close to whisper in his ear, “I might love you, too.” She pulled back and winked at him.

Damon growled and reached forward, tickling her at her waist. “Oh you think you’re funny do you?”

He pulled her onto his lap, cradling her with their faces close, connected at the cheeks. “Will you be happy with me?”

“I can’t imagine being anything else.” Rachiah leaned up, framing his face with her hands. She slowly moved his face down to hers and their lips melded together with the promise of tomorrow.

All of their pain forgotten. Nothing else mattered but each other.


“Rachiah!” Cyan and Sherri rushed her as she and Damon walked into the dining area of Bella Acres.

A large Thanksgiving dinner was spread out on a hodgepodge collection of tables and fancy tablecloths with turkey, dressing, gravy, and painted squash for centerpieces.

The friends wrapped their arms around each other. Sherri pulled back and laughed. “It’s like the first Thanksgiving!”

Rachiah rolled her eyes and laughed. Damon shot her a questioning glance and Rachiah answered. “We tell the joke every year. I’m Native American and I’m eating dinner with a bunch of white people.”

They all claimed their seats and Stefanie squeezed Rachiah’s shoulder as she passed. She leaned down. “I’m so glad you could make it.”

“Thank you.” Rachiah hadn’t been sure how welcome she’d be in the Montana Trails family, but they’d melded around her like she’d always been part of the group.

Damon unfolded the cloth napkin into his lap and glanced around the table, then looked toward the front door. “Where’s Ryland? Are we waiting for him?”

Jareth shook his head and brandished a long knife and two-pronged fork. “No. He left early yesterday to go find Nate. He’s determined to have this family back together.”

Cyan leaned toward Rachiah and whispered under her breath. “I think Ryland has a drinking problem, but shh.” Worry colored her gaze and she looked toward Jareth again.

“Let’s take each other’s hands and I’d like to start by saying how grateful I am for each of you. Our family is a blessing and I’m so glad to be a part of it.” He nodded toward Drake. “Thank you for having us, Drake and Stefanie.”

Worry creased the lines at Damon’s eyes.

Rachiah squeezed his hand and shot him a reassuring smile. He would worry about Ryland. They all would.

But the Trails were wild until they were settled and they all had a path to travel.

Maybe as Ryland traveled his, he’d be able to return Nate to the fold and they would all be together again.

They could hope.

Hope was the best thing about their family. Hope in the face of adversity.

The end of Forgotten Trails, book #5 of The Montana Trails series, Clearwater County Collection.

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Clearwater County Collection has multiple subseries! Here’s the reading order.

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