Anne of Green Gables
The Blythe Orphans
Jem was trying hard not to cry, but not hard enough. A small tear rolled down his pale cheek. Jem couldn't be brave, even though he was the oldest, well, at least, the oldest boy. Joyce was hovering over him, being ten years old and one year older than Jem. The Blythe children were now orphans, since their parents, Anne and Gilbert Blythe died in a pneumonia epidemic.
Joyce stood there, her dark brown long hair was flying in the wind. The gently put an arm around Jem. Joyce's face looked so pale, and sad, and Jem knew that she needed to cry too. Then Nan and Di, both 7 years old started screaming for their parents, and, Shirley, being 6, didn't know what exactly was happening, along with Rilla, who just turned five last week. But Walter, he knew what happened, but he just looked into the sky. He had as blank a face as Joyce, and he looked so solemn, even though he was but 7.
Joy was wearing a white plan dress, but it became her magnificently. Jem knew that Joyce was the boss, but he now was the second boss, which was pretty good.
"Joyceee!" Nan and Di screamed. Joyce covered her ears, she uncovered them in time to her the screech echo all through Rainbow Valley, their play area.
"Nan, Di, Jem, Walter, Rilla, Shirley, I know this is hard for you to understand, but we'll be okay, I'll take care of you," Joyce whispered slowly, and clearly, in a voice so that even though the younger children didn't understand what happened, they wouldn't be afraid.
Susan Baker, who was the Blythe's housekeeper came out of Ingleside, wearing her best dress.
"Maybe it would be better that the children didn't come to the funeral," she said to the minister.
"I don't know, but I have to talk to you about that."
"What?" Susan Baker questioned the minister.
"Well, I'm not going to be here." He paused, to see how she would react.
"What?" she asked, as if she didn't hear what he said.
"There's going to be a new minister, his name is Meredith."
"Meredith?" Susan Baker was definitely puzzled. "What are you talking about? You aren't going to do the funeral?!"
"No, I'm not."
"This is no time for jokes, my best friends in the world just died. Well, at least I've got the children, and at least most of them never really 'bonded' with either of their parents."
"What about that older girl?" the minister asked. He was obviously not too familiar with the Blythe orphans' names. "The one in the white dress. She looks like a ghost."
"Joyce? You're not talking about Joyce, are you? You couldn't be. She looks absolutely beautiful, not ghostly."
"Don't say a word, I'm glad you're not doing the Blythes' funeral, it would be ruined." Susan Baker was rather harsh with the minister. "And by the way, is this Meredith in any relation with you or your friend at all?"
"Never met him-"
"Good!" And with that Susan Baker became a child again and wildly ran into Rainbow Valley to see and comfort the children. Susan Baker found the all of the children weeping intensely, all except Walter, and especially Joyce.
"My dear brave Joyce, what is the matter?" Susan asked.
In between sobs, came the answer, "we're going to end up in an orphan asylum, like mother did, and oh! it will be terrible! Oh Susan! What are we going to do!? I'm supposed to be brave, and show my siblings the right things to do, but how can I if I don't do the right things myself? I never had any friends at school! And then, mean and awful people will make us slave for them take care of their awful little children, even though that they can't help it that their parents were awful."
"It will be okay, Joyce, we'll be okay. We'll find a way to not let you go to an orphan asylum." Joyce loved it when Susan talked like the two of them were in charge.
"But what will we do?"
"Let me worry about that, Dear Joyce." Joyce smiled.
"Her smile looks just like the doctor's smile," Susan thought, and a tear rolled down her cheek.
"No! I mustn’t cry!" she thought again. "But what I am to do with these children, I guess we'll have to wait after the funeral! That terrible minister! How could he do that?!" she kept thinking.
"Thank you, Susan," Joyce thanked her elder kindly, still smiling, but talking as if they were equals. "You took a large load or aggrevation off my shoulders."
"Aggravation," Susan Baker corrected.
More to Come Soon!