The Final Goodbye By: J.L. Jacobs © 2015 (Full Length Book)

Out of sheer desperation, Sophia Lancaster flees her small town of Wellington, Ohio in order to become a mail-order-bride. Naive and full of hope, her world is shattered once again as she is quickly wed to Travis Ewing who seems to despise her from the moment they meet.

Over time, they fall madly in love with each other but Fate has other plans in store for them. This is a suspenseful and very emotional love story that is set in the 1890's where history comes alive. You will laugh and cry over Sophia's journey through hell and back as she fights for the only thing she truly believes in: Love.

*I love to hear your comments and feedback but please DO NOT POST ANY SPOILER ALERTS OR GIVE AWAY STORY INFO. This ruins the reading experience for others.* This is a rough draft version. This book is for mature readers over the age of 17 only. It does contain some profanity and a few graphic love scenes. The synopsis will be re-written, and I will be updating the book with edits.

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17. Chapter Seventeen: Back at the Ranch

Chapter Seventeen: Back at the Ranch

 

     The night before, Sophia had been exhausted by the visits from Elsie, then Travis, Mrs. Cox, and the children. When they all had left, she fell into a deep sleep, only waking up to take her dosage of laudanum and the indicas hemp oil. Very bright and early the next morning, she awoke to the gurgling sounds being emitted quite loudly from her stomach indicating that she was hungry. The pain in her abdomen was still somewhat bad, but it was improving. The hemp oil made her appetite grow, so she eagerly awaited the arrival of her breakfast tray while pondering the conversation between her and Travis from yesterday that she replayed in her mind many times since. Especially that kiss. The one he had planted most sensuously on her mouth before he had left that had wreaked havoc with her heart, which was now at war with her brain. Even through the pain she felt desire well up inside her causing her womanly parts to warm in desire. Her breasts felt abnormally swollen and tender, and without thinking, she cupped their fullness in her hands. That touch caused such a simple pleasure that emanated throughout her whole body. She closed her eyes and pictured Travis doing the same to her. A smile brightened up her face. There was no doubt about it; she truly lusted after her husband. With his very dark brown hair, tanned skin, and light green eyes, she could not help but to lust after him even in her present condition. Reaching for her reticule which was on the small table next to her bed, she carefully pulled out her journal, the bottle of ink, and a quill in order to write her next journal entry.

 

July 25, 1890

The desire I am feeling for Travis at the moment makes me want to have him ravish me right here and now. Is it normal for a woman to so desire her husband? I reflect on that sentiment as I had known Jeremy for years, and even though he is also very handsome, I am not quite sure I ever felt this level of desire for him. I suppose that could be because I never had the opportunity to find out what intimacy with him would have been like. He very well could have brought out these same feelings of desire in me that I now feel for Travis.

I feel the need to tell Travis the truth about what is happening with me but I find that I lack the courage to do so. I don't want him finding out some other way, as I suspect that would anger him and in turn, he would find me to be a more of a liar of sorts even if I am trying to keep this secret in order to protect him. Perhaps what it really comes down to is that I am just a coward. But in all honesty, having him not find out right now will give me the chance to be a proper wife to him and to be a proper step-mother to his children. I feel like they need me, even if they do not know it yet. Fate brought me here for a reason, and I fully intend on doing what I can to protect them from this... this... devastating news. In time, I will tell them as they do have the right to know, but only when I feel the time is right.Until then, I shall do my very best to pretend that all is fine with me. I will live my life to the fullest and embrace the new family I am honored to be a part of.

On another note, I have received letters from back home. Mother writes to me that Father is working just as hard as he always has and she is trying to keep busy herself by taking on more community service tasks within my hometown of Wellington. She also says that Rachel's stomach is getting a little bit bigger now even though she is still wearing her corsets, but her corsets are tied much looser than normal. Maybelle has had tea with both Mother and Rachel on a couple of occasions and they all talk about and worry about me. Mother sent her love and best regards, along with the same from Father. How I miss them both!

Then there was a couple letters from Rachel. One she had wrote to me the same day I left. In that letter she is noticeably sad and asks why I chose to leave to marry such a complete stranger the way that I have. She said she prayed on my behalf that Travis is not a degenerate and at the very least, tolerably good looking. The next letter from her was written a week later. She tells me that she and Maybelle had ran into Jeremy at Bowlby and Hall grocer's store. Jeremy asked after me out of politeness but Rachel suspects he misses me terribly. She says he didn't look very happy and had dark circles under his eyes as if he was plagued with sleepless nights and stress. Rachel thinks that is the least he deserves after what he had done to me. Thankfully there was no mention of that harlot Angelique. The last thing I want to hear is anything about her! She is the reason why my future with Jeremy was ruined. But oddly, as I write this, my feelings for Jeremy seemed to have dissipated altogether ever since that one night of passion that I shared with Travis which really confuses me as I had loved Jeremy for such a long time. 

There were a few letters from Maybelle of course; she misses me as much as I miss her. In her letters she talks of spending as much time with Rachel as she can which makes me both homesick and happy that the two of them have each other to lean on. I feel awful enough that I have caused such worry and stress over my decision to leave the way I did, so hearing that the two of them are still spending time together makes me happy. Maybelle says that she hopes I am still planning on visiting before Rachel has her baby. Of course, I will do everything I can to make sure I am there given my current circumstances. I do not plan on telling any of them back home what has happened with me. That means I am keeping this huge secret of mine from the people I am the closest to and love the most, but it's what I feel is the right thing to do. Then Maybelle also wrote about the encounter at Bowlby and Hall's store with Jeremy. She said the same things that Rachel talked about in her letters except Maybelle said there is talk going on around town about Angelique. Apparently, the gossip mongers are saying that Angelique was never really pregnant to begin with and only said so in order to prevent Jeremy and I from getting married. I don't know how accurate this information is, but if it is true in anyway, then Angelique can rot in hell for all I care! The more I hear about her, and from the way she has treated me since Jeremy called off our wedding, I can honestly say that she seems deranged. 

 

Nellie sent a couple letters saying how much she missed me and how things at home just weren't the same without me there. Mother and Father were both noticeably sadder. Just as I predicted to Father the day I left Wellington, Mother went on an enormous shopping trip in Cleveland  only a few days later. Father was quite upset over the amount of money she had spent and forbade her from doing anymore shopping for at least two months! That was the first time I ever remember Father being upset by one of Mother's shopping trips, so she must have really spent quite a bit of money for him to do so.

There were two small parcels. One was from Nellie which had a small note tucked inside. She had sent me a small hand written book of her recipes including how to make her special butter. It was a wedding present she thought would be helpful with my new life. That recipe book is something I shall treasure for the rest of my days! The other package was slightly larger and was from Mother and Father. They, too, had sent me a wedding present. It was a silver box lined in a fine pale blue velvet on the inside. There is a dainty little ballerina that spins around to the music that plays when you wind the box up from the bottom. Inside the box was a change purse filled with gold coins. The note that came with the present instructed me to use the coins to buy appropriate gifts for Travis and the children. What a wonderful gesture for my parents to think of them! I plan on using the coins to do just that. There was one last item in the silver box. It was a gold necklace with a cameo pendant. When I opened up the pendant, inside there was a picture of my parents on the left and a picture of Rachel on the other. This gift made me downright cry! I instantly put the necklace on and will never take it off for as long as I shall live!

 

#

July 31, 1890

I have been back home here at the ranch for a few days now. Under Dr. May's strict orders, I have not been allowed to leave my bed while I finish recuperating even though I feel so much better. Travis, the children, and even Mrs. Cox has been very accommodating towards me. While I have been laid up, Travis has been working hard around the ranch with little Mikey helping him. Mrs. Cox comes up here to bring me meals, and when she wasn't busy working around the house she would sit in a chair at my bedside to keep me company. It gave us the chance to get to know one another on a much more personal level. 

I told her all about my life growing up in Wellington and how I came to be here, and she described to me her own upbringing and how she met and married Mr. Cox. She mentioned that she birthed six children of her own but only one was still living, which was her daughter who was about to give birth to her first baby which Mrs. Cox was very excited about. I did feel a strong amount of pity for her though when she told me that five of her other children had died in various ways. How heartbreaking that must have been for her and Mr. Cox!

Hope has hardly left my bedside these last few days unless she was busy doing her chores and helping Mrs. Cox out. Even she and I have had long talks and I feel such a deep connection with her now. Yes, I might have cancer, but it's been a small blessing in disguise. It has brought me much closer to everyone here and I couldn't ask for anything better. Elsie Prescott came to see me yesterday and she brought me a beautiful bouquet of fresh flowers to put on the small bedside table to help brighten me up. The flowers are quite lovely if I do say so myself. She talked to me for a few hours about local gossip, but since I don't know very many people in the Dallas area, much of it went right over my head. I did enjoy spending time with her though. 

This morning Dr. May made a house call to check my abdomen and to take my stitches out. He gave me the all clear to get out of bed finally as long as I don't overdo myself. He said that he's arranged to have me start seeing Dr. Halsted at the end of this week who will take over my cancer treatments but that Dr. May himself will be there for each of those weekly appointments. I still have no idea how he made that happen, but I am once again thankful and indebted to him for what he has done for me. I offered him a payment but he refused it saying my bills were being covered already. When I asked by whom, he wouldn't answer. So now I am overly curious. I bet it's Travis. It's the only person I can think of who would do such a generous thing for me. Mrs. Cox left a little while ago to go visit with her daughter so she can be there for the birth of her first grandchild, and she left me lists of instructions of everything I could possibly need to know about while she is away for the next month or so. It felt good to get out of bed after Dr. May removed my stitches, so I took the time to do a walk through of the house with Mrs. Cox before she left so she could make sure I knew where everything was located. It is now time for me to head off to bed as Travis will be done with his bath here soon. The last few evenings we have had together have been wonderful. He's been gracious and kind and we've used our evenings spending time talking and getting to know one another better. I look forward to this evening like the ones before it. Dare I say that I am falling head over heels in love with this man and his children? Being here is starting to feel like home and I love knowing that I finally have a family of my own to love and care for.

 

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     The next evening, as the sun began to set in the eastern sky causing a riot of beautiful colors with it's decent, Sophia lay on her back on a blanket outside with Travis next to her doing the same as they held hands and watched the colors change from deep reds, oranges, and yellows into even deeper shades of indigo and blue. A few stars began to dot the overly large Texas sky. Crickets could be heard singing their special song and Sophia felt such joy in her heart as she looked sideways over at her husband. He, in turn, looked over at her with a small smile of his own on his face as he rolled over onto his side in order to kiss her full on the mouth. Her heart began to beat rapidly as it always did when he kissed her. Ever since she had returned home, they had enjoyed their fair share of kissing. She rolled on her side as well in order to allow their kiss to deepen. Not even aware that she had done so, she clenched onto his shirt with both her hands that brought him closer to her so that their chests were touching. "You look so gorgeous right now." Travis whispered huskily as he gently rolled on top of her. She could see the passion in his eyes and imagined that it mirrored the same look in her own. "You aren't looking so bad yourself husband." she echoed in a sultry voice of her own. Travis's eyes had such a look of raw passion that she wanted him with a fierceness that she couldn't even begin to describe. All of him, inside and out. His rock hard manhood could be felt against her hip as he continued to kiss her passionately. She wrapped her legs around his own to entwine him further against her. There would be no more waiting. She had to have him right then and there. At least, until a shrill whistle could be heard nearby. Mr. Cox's familiar voice sounded as he said, "Hey you two love birds, take it inside! Some of us are still trying to get work done around here!" Sophia and Travis both laughed and broke apart their bodies in order to sit up in embarrassment. The next thing she knew, Travis quickly stood up, taking her with him as he scooped her up effortlessly in his arms. Mr. Cox could be heard laughing as Travis practically ran towards the house with her in his arms, their now crinkled up blanket left behind and utterly forgotten about. 

 

     Before long, the two of them were in their bedroom as he quickly undressed himself, then her. There was very little light coming in from the open window by the crescent moon that was now in the sky outside, so Sophia felt fairly confident that Travis would not be able to see her ugly scar. In all fairness, she could barely see him. It wasn't much longer before she was completely naked as she stood there while he began delivering small little teasing kisses all over her body which made her feel like she was about to melt on the spot. Granted, she was still a little sore but her desire outweighed any other feelings of discomfort in that moment. She wanted him just as much as he wanted her. Little murmurs of delight escaped from her mouth as his hands cupped the fullness of her breasts. His tongue playfully nipped at first one nipple, then the other. Her hands were moving of their own accord as she cupped his bare ass. His very tight and well-defined ass that made her desire swell tenfold. He once again picked her up and plopped her down onto the bed which did cause a slight bit of pain in her lower abdomen area but she covered up her moan of pain into a moan of pleasure instead, just as the tip of his penis began to enter her moist inner core. This was it! This is what her body had been so craving! He let out a loud moan while he fully entered her as he slipped in and out at a slow pace. "You feel so damn good woman." he whispered in her ear as his teeth nipped at her bare ear lobe. Her hands, still cupping his bottom, urged him deeper inside. He complied with a quick set of thrusts as their hips gyrated in a dance of their own. Nothing had ever felt so right, so complete. They were one and the same in that moment of time, each delighting in the ripples of pleasure that consumed their bodies. "I think I love you." she whimpered as an intense feeling of bliss began to overcome her entire body that emanated from her core as it billowed upwards to her head and downwards into the tips of her toes.That was her very first orgasm and one she'd never forget! Now she was able to fully understand what Rachel had talked about in the past. Seconds later, Travis's own body tensed up as he felt a rapture of his own that seeped his seed deep inside her after one last powerful thrust. A loud moan bellowed from his mouth as his shaft grew slack. He rolled over onto his back which was drenched in a full body sweat from their quick and intense coupling. He was literally incapable of speaking while his chest sought some much needed air for several minutes. The pleasure from their lovemaking had so consumed Sophia that minutes later she fell fast asleep, completely oblivious when he whispered back, "I think I love you too."

 

#

     The next morning she was still sound asleep when he once again became overwhelmed with desire for her. The sun was rising outside and the roosters crowed noisily, but not enough so that their calls woke her up. She was laying on her back with the bed sheets tangled through her legs and edged up to her small waist. Her breasts looked so inviting that he rolled atop her in a sitting position in order to look down upon her body in all of its glory. He gently and equally kissed each breast for a few minutes, then worked those kisses down lower to her abdomen, stopping only briefly to move away the light white sheet that covered the path he was seeking. Then he saw it; the jagged red scar that went from one hip to the other. It was still puffy from being so new. It took him by surprise as he sucked in his breath. His shaky fingers gently traced the scar beginning from her right hip as he followed it to the left one. He knew something had happened while she was at the hospital. He knew she had been hiding something. But he had no idea that she had a surgery of this magnitude... and for what reason exactly? What wasn't she telling him? Tears pricked his eyes. He was utterly at a loss for words. All the pain she had been in and tried so hard to conceal was now more than evident to him. He had to begrudgingly respect her for being so brave but he was also equally confused as to why she didn't share her ordeal fully with him. Was it because she had been scared to? Thinking back on the first few weeks she had been there, he had to once again guiltily admit that his treatment towards her had been pretty awful. One tear fell just above that fresh scar and he tensed up. This beautiful, sweet, brave woman who had already endured so much, and here she was trying to keep some sort of a secret from him like this. He felt truly awful yet again. He wished he could go back in time to erase the past so that he could have given her a proper welcome and wedding when she had arrived in Dallas.

 

     Sophia began to stir awake underneath him. He quickly used one of his hands to brush away his tears just as her eyelids fluttered open. She foggily saw him sitting on her and after a few seconds, she looked down to see that her scar was exposed in the pinkish-colored dawn's morning light. At once she was wide awake and became consumed with fear as she tried to scramble up into a sitting position which was made difficult with his weight holding her down. "Get off of me!" she cried out in panic when Travis refused to budge. He knew! Or at least, he knew something. That thought freaked her out now that he had seen that god awful scar. "Shhhh darlin'." he whispered as his hands gently caressed her flat stomach. "Get off of me Travis!" she pleaded with him urgently. "You're still beautiful to me. Don't let that scar embarrass you. I can't say I blame you much for not wanting to talk about it, and I feel awful about that. I sure wish you would tell me what happened." he said comfortingly, using his hands to pull her up towards him. He cradled her against his chest holding her tightly in his embrace. She could feel his strong heartbeat as he planted several kisses on her head through her mass of disheveled hair made that way from their love making only last night. He rocked her in his arms as he continued to plant kiss after kiss, doing so for many minutes until he could visibly feel her trembling calm down some. "Travis, I, I, --- I just can't talk about it right now." she said softly with desperation. She felt quite sore and desperately needed to take her next dose of medications, especially since she forgot her dose last night after being distracted with their shared passion of one another. "Let me up. Please." she begged, "I have to take my medicine and get dressed. I also need a bath and have to prepare the breakfast meal. Plus the children will be up soon."

 

     Against his better judgment, Travis released his hold on her. He had wanted nothing more than to stay there all day, just in order to hold her in his arms. She scrambled out of their bed and fumbled her way to her vanity as naked as the day she was born. Travis sighed in appreciation of his wife's assets. She sure had such a lovely figure. She quickly took her medicine then walked back over to the bed in order to sit down for a moment until it began to take effect. Her abdomen may have been sore but her heart was hurting even worse from him seeing her scar like that. How could she have let that happen? But in truth, part of her actually felt a little bit relieved that Travis did see it. Not only that, but he didn't seem disgusted by it either and he wasn't pressing her for more information. He actually seemed like he respected her wishes in not wanting to discuss the matter. Looking over at him, she saw him staring at her with a twinkle in his eyes. "I do believe you said you needed to bathe. As it so happens, so do I." With a little chuckle, he scooped her up in his arms and carried her to the bathing room, quick to shut and lock the door once they were both inside. He gently set her down and walked over to the tub to turn on the faucets as she narrowed his eyes at him. "What do you think you're doing?" she whispered loudly in order to avoid waking up Mikey and Hope. "I'm running us a bath Mrs. Ewing. Your filthy and I think you need some assistance." he grinned daringly, putting an emphasis on the words Mrs. Ewing. She couldn't help but laugh at that and shot back a retort of her own, "Oh, I think it is you, Mr. Ewing, who is the filthy one. As for assistance, I am thinking that your brain has turned to some kind of mush." He plugged up the tub after getting the water to just the right temperature and looked over at her with a wicked grin on his face. "Of course it has. Looking at that gorgeous body of yours tends to do that to me." Since they were both still quite naked, he used the opportunity of waiting for the tub to fill up to playfully smack her plump little bottom as he pulled her towards him for a sensuous kiss that seemed to ease some of the insecurities that she was having over her new scar. "Mmmmm, Mrs. Ewing, you are so delicious that I could just eat you up!" It was her turn to playfully smack him this time as they both laughed at each other. 

 

     His arousal for her stood out and it caught her a bit off guard. This was the first time she actually had seen it in the full light of day. It sure was a curious looking thing. It stood straight up where the tip met just below his navel. His eyes watched her as she was most obviously and unabashedly checking out his manhood. She knelt down in order to see it better. It was so.... so.... big! There was a blue vein that ran up the length of it and the tip of it closely resembled the top of a mushroom, except it was a dusky pink color. He purposefully tightened up certain muscles in his buttocks which caused his shaft to jerk out at her. In response, it caused her to almost fall over backwards. "It's talking to you." Travis said as he let out a deep laugh at her expense. She got up and once again playfully smacked him. "I'll bet." she replied sardonically. She walked over to the tub and turned off the faucets, getting in the pleasantly warm water seconds later. The water felt so heavenly! Travis grabbed a bar of soap and a small dry cloth off the counter top near the sink and got in the tub himself from behind her. She closed her eyes and laid up against his chest as he wrapped his arms around her. His arousal was jutting up against the small of her back which made her own desire for him grow more than it had only moments before. He gently lifted her as he edged himself inside her, then set her on his lap, this time wrapping his arms around her breasts. Not a word was said as he made quiet and gentle love to her in the warmth of the water. At one point many minutes later, he turned her around to face him so that he could kiss her full pink lips. That position seemed to be even more favorable for Sophia as she began to softly moan in pleasure. Travis had never made love in a bathing tub before; in the past Rebecca had always preferred the times they had done it to be at night and only in their bed. Hell, half the time she wouldn't even take off her nightgown! This was something new that he was sharing with Sophia, and he sure as hell liked it a whole lot. It didn't take him long for him to come inside her either. It just always felt so damned good when he was inside her, but especially now with the warm water and her sitting on top of him. They sat still for a few moments enjoying their shared pleasure until Travis took the dry cloth and soaped it up, using it to wash her body. Then he lathered her hair and washed that for her as well. Minutes later she returned the favor. Just as she was finishing him up, loud knocking sounded at the door startling them both. "Who's in here?" came the irritated voice of Mikey, "I have to go pee. Real bad!" Travis got out of the tub and used a towel to wrap it around him. He unlocked the door and opened it up barely two inches, "Go to your room and wait a sec. I'll be right out." Travis said. "Well hurry up Pa, I gotta go badly!" Mikey said urgently. Travis shut the door and Sophia quickly exited the tub, pulling out the plug in order to drain the water. Travis wrapped another towel around her and once again opened the door to make sure the coast was clear. When he saw that it was, both of them ran out of the bathing room and down the hallway to their own room. Once inside, Travis yelled down the hallway, "You can go on in now Mikey!" then shut and locked their bedroom door so they could both get dressed, with Sophia giggling practically the entire time.

 

#

     It was late August and Sophia was sitting in the examination room to see Dr. Halsted and Dr. May for her weekly treatment. Both of the doctors came in quite promptly with smiles on their faces. "How have you been doing this week Mrs. Ewing?" Dr. Halsted said pleasantly. "Still doing fairly well. The medications seem to be working better now. It's as if with each passing week I have less and less pain. As a matter of fact, I haven't even been feeling any pain since my last visit." "How about the nausea problem?" Dr. May inquired. She had been experiencing some pretty intense nausea for the last month or so which she surmised to be from the medications and weekly treatment sessions. "The nausea is still pretty bad actually." Sophia replied, "It seems to get worse whenever I am around food. Or certain foods I should say. I cannot smell cooking bacon without retching and of course, Travis loves bacon so I still make it for him at least two to three times a week for breakfast." That made both the doctors look at each other curiously, "When is the last time you had your monthly courses?" Dr. May asked her bluntly. She sat there in thought for several moments before she responded, "About a week after I arrived here I suppose." This answer caused the doctors to once again look at each other, but this time a frown crinkled Dr. Halsted's forehead. Dr. May once again spoke up, "I think it's imperative that we, or rather I, should do a pelvic exam on you. Do I have your permission to proceed Mrs. Ewing?" Sophia became instantly frightened thinking that it was the cancer getting worse. She nodded her head yes as the tightness in her throat prevented her from speaking. "Just lay down. I will pull down your pantaloons to do the exam. I need you to lie perfectly still and stretch your legs as far apart as you can with your knees bent. You can scoot your bottom as close as possible to the edge of the table as well. I know it might be uncomfortable but, please, just stay still. It won't take long, I promise." Dr. May assured her. She did as he instructed, her face turning a deep pink color from embarrassment. Dr. May proceeded with the exam but she didn't quite expect him to use his fingers to feel up inside of her like that. She literally wanted to jump off the table and get the hells fire out of there! It was beyond mortifying! When he was finished, he instructed her to pull up her pantaloons while he consulted with Dr. Halsted in the hallway. It felt like forever to Sophia who feared bad news about her cancer situation, especially when Dr. May had finished the examination and seemed to have a queer look on his face. Her heart beat very rapidly while she waited in the small, hot room for the doctors to return. Minutes later they did, and as the door opened back up and they walked in, Dr. May proceeded to say, "I have some good news and some bad news. Which would you like first?"

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