I've just realized I've seen some really beautiful places...God is so awesome!!
Chapter Twenty ~
Some sane part of Jedidiah knew he should stop. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the part of him
willing to do so. His hands ran through her hair, reveling in the silky softness. He groaned and pulled her closer into his embrace. In between kisses he said, “I…will…marry… you. I’ll take care of you and Jessie…” More kissy noises erupted into the silence.
She groaned and rubbed her head into his shoulder.
This is getting way out of hand. He gently pushed her away, holding his hands out. “Look. We can’t do this.” He took a deep breath. “If this is all about sexual attraction, we need to stop right now. It isn’t right in the eyes of God, and it isn’t right in mine.”
His words cut through the haze surrounding Janna. Humiliation caused tears to prick her eyes. This wasn’t her. What on earth was going on? She wasn’t some loose woman who couldn’t wait to get her hands on some guy. She stepped away, wiping her hand across her face. “I’m sorry. I don’t know what’s got into me. I’m not normally like this.”
“I can believe that, but whatever ‘this’ thing is, we have to slow it down. We have a serious situation on our hands and we need to stay aware.”
Hairy’s low growl intruded on his next words.
Janna’s eyes rushed to the dog. He was looking toward the front window.
He put a finger to his lips, nodded his head, whispered, “Keep talking.”
“Anyway, I don’t know what we’re…” Her voice fell away when she heard the distinct sound of running footsteps outside the window.
Jedidiah rushed the rest of the way, pushing the heavy curtains from the glass. “Someone was there, it must’ve been him!”
Janna rushed to his side, trying to see what he saw, but there was no one in sight. “Oh Jedidiah, don’t say that. Maybe it was just a kid out playing a prank…”
“Be logical. I doubt the kids in this community are out trying to peek in windows after what they’ve just been through.”
She hesitated, wanting to believe he was wrong, but knew he wasn’t. She’d never had trouble with any of the kids around here. There was no reason for them to start now, especially after such a disaster. It was him. Cold dread poured over her, cementing her feet to the floor and sending such icy shockwaves over her she could scarcely breathe. She whimpered. She wanted to retreat inside her head. Her hands came up and she rubbed her cheeks, trying to bring feeling into them. “No. No…no…no…no!” She shook her head back and forth and slid to the floor, losing sight of reality for a moment. “Uh-uh. Not again. This can’t happen again. Why would he come after me? He just spent five years in jail because of what he did to me.”
Jedidiah slid down beside her, keeping his eye on the dog. “Hairy protect,” He commanded before pulling Janna’s rigid frame onto his lap.
“He isn’t right. I didn’t get a comprehensive sheet on the guy, but I got enough to know he’s been into drugs for a long time. Maybe he snapped. Hm, maybe he never was right. I don’t know. But he’s here, and we have to compensate.”
She couldn’t frame a sane thought. Tears welled in her eyes, burning like sulphur. She let them fall unheeded. Let him rock her like a child. Why was God allowing this nightmare to start all over? What had she done to deserve this? Other women didn’t have to go through it.” Guilt swept through her at the disloyal thought. Why was she blaming this on God? It wasn’t His fault. She shook her head when a terrifying thought came to mind. “What if he tries to hurt Jessie?”
Jedidiah squeezed her arm for comfort. “He won’t get a chance. Hairy won’t let him. I won’t let him.” He pushed her off his lap with gentle fingers and stood up. “I’m going to check on him.”
He turned at her words.
“Why is this happening?”
He shook his head. “I don’t know, Honey, but we’ll get it taken care of.”
“What if he gets to me? What if he…?” Sobs burst from her and Jedidiah rushed to her side.
“He won’t. I’m here now.” He ran his fingers through her hair, this time in comfort.
“I just feel so…”
“Yes, but more than that… violated, annoyed, irritated…ashamed.”
Jedidiah hesitated. “Why ashamed?”
She held her tongue for a moment, trying to decide whether to tell him. Then said, “Because what was meant for the man I marry was taken by someone whom it wasn’t given. I can’t get it back.” More tears streamed down her face.
Jedidiah rubbed her shoulder. “You need to calm down. You’re just going to get yourself in a quandary. “Sometimes we don’t have all the answers. What we do know is God loves you. He won’t give you more than you can handle, and lastly, it’s going to strengthen you in some way you needed.”
At his words, she looked into his eyes. “He did send me you…”
“Exactly, now let’s go check on Jessie.”
She grabbed his hand and they moved toward Jessie’s room.
They turned the corner, and burst out laughing. Hairy was lying next to Jessie, who was lying overtop his furry head, hanging on for dear life. “My doggy,” he was saying. He squealed, the little boy sound so endearing Janna almost burst into tears again.
Jedidiah moved into the room. “Hey Champ. I thought you were asleep.”
“Hairy scared.” He patted the dog’s fur and as if on cue, he turned and licked the child’s face.
Jedidiah rolled his eyes and shook his head. “Maybe I should’ve named himScooby.”
A small burst of laughter erupted from within Janna, but she felt too uneasy to let go completely. She walked over to the child and rubbed his hair back from his face. Are you okay?”
“Yeah Ja-Ja. I just want my mommy.”
The simplicity of his answer caught her unaware and she gasped. He wasn’t crying or whining, just stating a simple fact. “You know she’s in…”
“I know. She’s with God.” The little boy looked up at her, tears filling his huge gray eyes. “But I want her here.”
She reached over and pulled the child into her arms. “I do too Honey. I’m so sorry. I don’t know why it happened. But you’ll always have me.”
He laid his head on her shoulder and plopped his thumb in his mouth. “I know.” And then he went silent. A few moments later he was sound asleep.
Janna placed him in the bed and tip-toed out of the room, Jedidiah right behind her. He pulled the door almost closed, leaving Hairy inside. As soon as they were back in the hallway he said, “He’ll keep him safe.”
They went back to the living room. She sat in the chair and he on the couch.
“Do you want me to call the police?”
“He was looking in your window…”
“No. You’ll keep me safe. God wouldn’t have sent you if you couldn’t.”
“Thank you for having confidence in me.” He smiled.
She shook her head. “No offense, but my confidence is in God.”
He grinned from ear to ear. “That’s even better.”