Hard Rain

Free Hard Rain by B. J. Daniels

Book: Hard Rain by B. J. Daniels Read Free Book Online
Authors: B. J. Daniels
arm. “JD, I can’t feel my legs.”
    “Lie still. Don’t move. I’m getting help.” He quickly stepped to the kitchen wall phone and called 9-1-1 for an ambulance.
    Grace had begun to cry, muttering something through her tears that he couldn’t make out.
    “Please hurry,” he pleaded into the phone before going back to her and kneeling with her on the floor. “Don’t talk,” he insisted when she tried to tell him what had happened. “They said you should lie very still. An ambulance is on the way.”
    She closed her eyes and he prayed she didn’t die. At the hospital he paced the floor, too upset and too guilt-ridden to sit. She had begged him to resign as senator his second term. She’d never minded his involvement in politics as long as their son was home. But now...
    “Your wife has sustained an injury to her spine,” the doctor said when he finally came out.
    “She said she couldn’t feel her legs,” JD said. “Is she—”
    “I think the paralysis is temporary. There is some swelling. Once that goes down...”
    “But you don’t know if she will be able to walk again?”
    “Let’s wait and see after the swelling goes down. If you like, you can see her now.”
    He walked down the long hallway to her room, mentally kicking himself for not being there, though he doubted he could have prevented her fall even if he had been home. That logic didn’t make him feel much better. He’d been distancing himself from Grace and her angry bitterness for weeks now.
    “How are you feeling?” he asked as he stepped through her door and moved quickly to her side. He’d promised to love and honor this woman until death did they part. He desperately didn’t want to break that oath. He’d always been a man of his word.
    Grace gave him a wan smile. “I might never walk again.”
    “The doctor is hopeful that when the swelling goes down, you’ll be fine. You were lucky. It could have been much worse.”
    “Lucky?” she demanded. “JD, I was almost killed.”
    “What happened to make you fall like that?” he asked.
    “Is that what you think happened?” she cried. “She tried to kill me.”
    “What?”
    “Sarah. I was upstairs. I heard Buckmaster leave. I thought she’d left with him, but instead, she came upstairs looking for me. She was acting strange, talking crazy. I told her I didn’t want to argue. I started down the stairs and I felt her hand in my back. JD, she pushed me!”
    He stared at his wife. “Grace—”
    “You don’t believe me?” Her voice had risen. It broke on every word. “I just told you that my daughter-in-law tried to kill me and you’re calling me a liar?”
    “There must be some other explanation. Maybe you just thought—”
    She turned her face to the wall. “Get out of my room.”
    “Grace—”
    “Get out!”
    He took a step back, telling himself she’d had a scare. Once she was feeling better... “I’ll check on you later.”
    “Don’t bother.”
    * * *
    B RODY KNEW HOW stubborn his father could be. He waited, determined to get answers that he felt he’d been denied all his life.
    He’d wanted to know about Maggie from as far back as he could remember. Once when he was very young he’d asked about the beautiful woman’s photo on his uncle’s mantel. Flannigan had been drinking and was surprisingly talkative. He’d said that Maggie was “the sweetest girl God ever put on this earth.”
    “Where is she?” he’d asked. His uncle’s green eyes had filled with tears.
    “She’s in my heart.”
    When he’d asked his father how Maggie could be in his uncle’s heart, he’d been told, “She’s gone and it breaks your uncle’s heart and mine to talk about her.”
    Now, as he waited for his father to speak, he felt that old frustration. Everything he’d learned about Maggie had been either on the playground at school or whispered gossip. All of those stories had been about a wild, reckless young woman with the morals of an alley cat.
    “Leave it

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