Heehee, I'm back already! Again, I have tried to write it in the style of the programme, so for the best reading experience imagine it as the same. By the way, this is an AU.
When I was seventeen there was one visitor to our mountain who I remembered in particular, a girl of around my own age named Jenny Pendleton. Jenny and I fell in love, but after her father's death she was forced to leave the mountain. I missed her very much, but never more so than the following spring.
The Walton family sat around the table eating breakfast.
"John-boy, could you please pass me the milk?" asked Elizabeth.
John-boy, who was sitting at the end of the table in his usual place, leaning on the table with his chin resting in his hand, did not react.
Still he stared vacantly into space. The chatter at the table died down a little. Olivia leant forward.
His gaze focused, and he turned his head. "Yes, Mama?"
"Elizabeth asked you to pass her the milk."
"Oh, sorry Elizabeth." He handed it over.
"You've been a little bit spacey lately, son. Something on your mind?"
John-boy looked uncertainly back at his father. Everyone was looking at him now, waiting for an answer.
"Well, uh, truth be told Daddy, I been thinkin' about Jenny."
Olivia, whose face had been worried, broke into a smile. "Well," she said, picking up her bowl, "why don't you write her a letter? Ask how she is."
As John-boy sat in his room that afternoon, surrounded by piles of screwed up paper, the knock on the door that came was not exactly what he wanted to hear.
The visitor entered without invitation. It was Jim-bob.
"Look Jim-bob, I'm real busy here, do you need something?"
Jim-bob came over to the desk.
"What're you doing?"
"I'm talking to you, aren't I. Go on, scat."
"Well, alright. When you finish, though, we're playing catch outside."
Jim-bob disappeared out the room again, leaving John-boy alone at his desk. He ran a hand through his hair and turned back to the fresh piece of paper.
He stopped. He had tried every take he could. This letter had to be perfect.
'How are you? Everyone here is fine."
He screwed it up in anger and tossed it to the side. Why was this so hard? He'd been writing all his life. He ran both hands through his hair now.
Jim-bob walked through the screen door and back into the garden.
"Is he gonna come play with us?" asked Elizabeth.
"Nah, he said he was too busy."
"That's a shame," said Jason. "It's more fun when John-boy joins in."
"Aw, come on," said Mary-Ellen, grabbing the ball from Jason's hands. "Stop being a load of sissies. It's not like he's gonna be busy forever. Let's just carry on without him."
John-boy sat back in his chair and picked up the letter.
'I miss you more than I can say. I write just to tell you that, and that I love you, Jenny. I desperately want to see you, but as I know that that is not possible, I must be contented with writing you this note.
'I hope to see you again, my sweet – I have discovered a new part of the woods that I wish to share with you before I share it with anyone else.
He sighed, and set his glasses down on the desk. It wasn't great, but it would have to do. Folding the note carefully and placing it in his pocket, he headed downstairs.
"Are you done with your work now, John-boy?" asked Erin as he appeared out the door.
"I will. I just need to go down to Ike's first."
"Hiya John-boy. What d'you need?" said Ike, smiling as always.
John-boy smiled back. "Hey Ike. Could I buy an envelope and a stamp, please."
"Alright then," Ike went over to the post window. "One envelope…" He placed it on the counter. "And one stamp."
"Thanks, Ike." He wrote Jenny's address on the envelope, stuffed the paper inside, and sealed it tightly. Then he added the stamp and handed it back to Ike. "Thanks again, Ike. Oh, and here's the money."
"Thanks, John-boy. Don't you worry, I'll see that it gets first delivery."
R & R? Please?