On a beautiful spring afternoon in May, Alli folded the curtain she had begun and placed it on top of her sewing machine. With a sigh of satisfaction, she stood and walked to the wall to retrieve her sweater. The door jingled and she looked up to see Dick enter the shop. He took off his hat and nodded toward her.
Alli slipped around her table and hurried towards him. “Hello, Dick. Can I help you with anything?”
“Yes. Are you finished with work for today?” Dick wore a mysterious smile that caught Alli’s attention.
“Yes, I was just about to leave when you came in.”
“I am glad I caught you in time. I came to ask if you will join me on a walk this afternoon.”
Alli raised an eyebrow slightly. “I would love to—one moment.” She stepped into Miss Weston’s office for a quick goodbye and then followed Dick out onto the street.
As they walked side by side down the road, Alli turned to Dick. “Where are we going to walk?”
Dick smiled. “Wait and see.”
Several minutes of walking took them out of the small town. Alli gasped as they neared a large field covered with green grass and colorful wildflowers.
“Here we are.” Dick motioned toward the field.
Without hesitation, Alli picked up her skirts and rushed forward into the field, stopping when she was a fair distance from the road. She lowered herself to the ground and picked a small bouquet of flowers. Dick lingered a moment by the road before following and seating himself beside her. The aroma of flowers filled the air and flew along with the gentle breeze.
“Dick, it’s beautiful here,” Alli spoke softly. “Aren’t these flowers lovely?”
“No lovelier than the one holding them.”
Alli turned and saw Dick’s eyes looking deeply into her own. Her face grew warm and she let her gaze fall. Dick went on. “I’m glad you like it here. I thought you would.”
“Yes,” Alli revived. “It reminds me of the days when I was young and Mama, Papa, and Joseph were alive. We lived out in the country, right beside a field like this.” She held up a handful of purple flowers. “Joseph used to pick me bouquets of these often.” She let the flowers fall from her hand. “Oh dear, I’m afraid that running wore me out.”
“Lay down and rest,” Dick offered.
“I think I will, just for a moment.” Alli stretched her feet out in front of her, covering her legs with her dress, and leaned back.
Dick stood. “I’m going to walk over to those trees. Rest well.”
But Alli did not respond—she was already asleep.
Not twenty minutes later, Alli was awakened by drops of water landing on her face.
Sitting up, she realized it was raining. Immediately, Dick was standing at her side.
“Let’s take cover under the trees,” he suggested. Taking her hand, he pulled her gently toward the trees as the rain began to fall in sheets.
As they reached nature’s shelter, Alli pulled away, suddenly aware that this was the first time she had held his hand. Dick leaned against a tree and motioned for her to do the same.
“Did you rest well?” Dick asked with feeling.
“Very well. Did you enjoy your solitude?”
Dick’s gaze was fixed straight ahead. “In a way, yes. But in a greater way, no.”
Alli turned a puzzled face toward Dick. He turned to look at her. “Alli, I need to talk to you.”
A shudder swept through her whole body. She felt for the solid form of the tree behind her. “Yes?”
The gentle sound of the pouring rain provided a calm atmosphere as Dick tightened his gaze on her face. His expression was sincere and thoughtful.
“Alli, for over a year and a half, you have been a close friend of mine. You have encouraged me in godliness and spurred me on in good works. By knowing you, I have drawn closer to the Lord.” He paused as he brushed his dripping hair off his forehead. “But lately, I have longed to have you as an even closer friend. I have spoken about you to my parents and they have given their consent. I love you, Alli, for who you are in Christ. It is my greatest desire that you might join me in my walk through life…” Suddenly, he knelt down and took her hand in his. His earnest face was full of love. “Alli Stratford, will you become my wife?”
Time stopped as Alli got lost in his eyes. Tears blurred her vision and she swallowed before replying. “Yes, Dick, with all my heart!”
Standing, he placed his hand in his pocket and withdrew a ring. He placed it on her finger with care. “There! You are mine, Alli, till death do us part.”
Alli slowly withdrew her hand and held it close to her face. The ring consisted of two small diamonds on a silver band.
“It’s beautiful, Dick. Thank you. But it must have cost you a fortune.”
Dick shrugged. “I’ve been saving up ever since we met.”
Eyebrows raised, Alli stuttered. “How—how did you know?”
“I didn’t know, I only hoped.”
Alli smiled lovingly. “I feel honored to be claimed by such a worthy man.”
A contented smile spread itself across his face. “Alli, you must forgive me for taking the liberties of holding your hand a few moments ago. I will now ask properly: Alli, might I have the honor of holding your hand?”
With a smile, she placed her hand in his. “Always and forever, Dick.”
You guuuuyyysss!!! Ahh this story!! It’s been a long time since I’ve read it, and I’ve so enjoyed sharing it with you all.
God bless you!