Chapter Two

The next day, Lisa got up later than usual. When she woke, she looked around and forgot where she was, until she saw her satchel on the ground and saw that she was in the bed. She got up and walked over to her satchel and pulled out a green dress with flowers. She pulled out some white heels, and got dressed. Fixing her hair, she walked down the stairs.

"Well, look who's finally awake." Olivia smiled.

"About time." Esther was crocheting.

"Sorry." Lisa stopped fixing her hair. "I'm not really used to a nice bed."

Olivia looked at her. Lisa looked down. "I didn't have a real bed at home. My dad lost his job and we ran out of money. This depression's hitting everyone hard, even in New York." Lisa left the room and walked outside.

"I feel sorry for that poor girl." Olivia shook her head.

"She seems to be pretty old for as young as she is." Esther said.


Lisa walked down the steps to see everyone outside. Zeb, John, and John Boy were working in what looked like a mill, and the other kids were playing and having fun.

"Hey, Lisa."

"Hi Lisa." Both Ben and Jason said that at the same time.

"You wanna play Keep-Away with us?" Elizabeth asked.

"Keep-Away?" Lisa asked.

"You know, you throw the ball and try not to let the person in the middle catch it." Jason explained.

"Oh," Lisa laughed. "We didn't call it that."

"What did you call it?" Ben asked.

"Monkey in the Middle."

"So, am I the monkey?" Elizabeth asked.

"You're in the middle, aren't you?"


"Then you're the monkey."

Elizabeth smiled.

"So, do you wanna play with us?" Jason asked.


"Please?" Ben pleaded.

"Sure. But I can't throw good." Lisa warned. The three others smiled.

"Lisa can be the monkey." Elizabeth said, and walked out of the line. Lisa smiled and stood in the middle of Ben and Jason. Jason threw the ball, and Lisa jumped up. She caught it and smirked.


Lisa snuck into the barn, and climbed up the ladder. She lay back on the hay and smiled at the smell. There's never anything like this in the city, she thought. She sighed and closed her eyes. The barn door opened and closed and she looked over to see Jason sitting in a chair, another chair in front of him with some paper on it, and he held his guitar. He started playing and singing. Lisa suddenly melted at his voice. She smiled. She sighed and he stopped. Lisa went wide-eyed and shrank back into the shadows.

"Who's there?" Jason asked. Lisa didn't answer. "Ben?" Lisa didn't answer. "Ben, if that's you again, I swear—" Jason looked up and saw Lisa. His face softened. "Oh, Lisa. I didn't know you were in here."

Lisa blushed. "That was really pretty."

Jason smiled. "You inspired it."

"I don't know how."

"Come on down and I'll show you." Jason leapt down and walked back over to his chair and sat down. Lisa looked over and then got onto the ladder. After climbing down a bit she jumped. Jason stood as Lisa hit the ground. "Are you okay?"

"I'm fine."

Jason walked over and helped her up. "Here. You sure you're alright?"

"Yeah. I'm fine."

Jason led Lisa over to the chair and picked up the paper and the pencil. He put them on the ground and picked up his guitar and sat down. Lisa sat opposite of him. Jason held his guitar and began strumming the strings. He nodded and then began to play. He stopped. "I gotta warn you, it's not that good. And I don't have much written." Lisa shrugged.

"It's okay."

He began to play again. "She came up on one dark night

My brother in tow

He introduced her around so everyone would know

Hair, as black as night

Skin, as white as snow

But the beautiful part of her is her

Eyes, the color of maple leaves." He stopped and put down his guitar. Lisa looked at him.

"Well, don't stop." She said.

"That's all I got. It's not that good."

"To you. But I've never been serenaded before. To me it's beautiful."

Jason blushed. "I'm not the writer in the family. John Boy is. And whenever I try, it's not very good."

"Well, I still think it's beautiful."

Jason blushed a little deeper. Lisa smiled. "You're cute. But I think you're cuter when you blush." Jason looked down, and this time his ears turned red. Lisa giggled. The two looked at each other and Jason leaned in. Lisa's heart began to pound, and next thing she knew, Jason had closed the gap between them. They pulled away after a few seconds.

"I reckon I like that." Lisa said. Jason laughed.

"I reckon I do too." He kissed her again. Lisa kissed back.


Lisa and Jason were lying out under the stars. Lisa had her arm around his waist. Jason had his arm around her shoulders.

"The night sky is so beautiful." Lisa said. "You can never see this kind of stuff in New York."

"It's always better out here. I can't believe you've missed out on this." Jason shook his head.

"My whole life. Living in the city, you're pretty much blocked off from this, the buildings and all."

"I don't really see what John Boy sees in New York."

"New York is almost the capitol of everyone trying to make it, almost. I can understand. I write in a diary, and I can play the piano. A little."

"What do you know?"

"Well, I can do—"

"Jason, Lisa! Dinnertime!" they heard Olivia call.

"Come on. I'll help you up." Jason smiled. Lisa removed her arm, and he stood and then helped her up. The two ran back to the house, holding hands. They stopped, and walked in, trying not to make it noticeable. Mary Ellen gave them a look. Jason looked at her and sat down.

"What are you looking at?" he asked. Mary Ellen shrugged.

"Nothing." She said, and then smirked. Jason and Lisa sittin' in a tree, she thought, k-i-s-s-i-n-g. First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes...then comes Elizabeth in a baby carriage.