Book Series: IRISH BLUE Author: Sheila Willar Copyright: 2022 Sheila Willar ISBN #: 978-0-9867101-4-8 Book Title: THE CHAPEL Chapter #: 13 - PEARL NECKLACE
BOOK 1 - CHAPTER 13 - PEARL NECKLACE
Finola insisted that the dresses for Maggy’s wedding have matching shoes, so Kelly and Erin found a store named “Dyeing To Meet You”, to have them stained a pastel lavender blue.
While Kelly talked with the store owner about shades and finishes, Erin explored the aisles that were packed with nicknacks, of polish, glass beads, and jewelry. There she noticed a strand of pearls that had a butterfly on the clasp.
She had seen a string of beads just like it when she was very young, and now that it was in front of her once again, she considered buying it, but when Kelly called to go, Erin decided not to and left.
When they returned to the apartment, Finola announced to Erin, “Your mother called. She’s coming to New York.”
“Kerry will be in shock!” quipped one of the sisters.
“She’ll be overwhelmed.”
“She’s not invited to the wedding,” declared Finola.
“Mother!” reprimanded Maggy. “Of course she is."
Finola and her sisters were rivals of Kerry, because they blamed her for their brother Patrick’s disappearance.
Erin did not respond to the jeers. She hadn’t seen her father in almost two decades and had no interest in the drama.
On the day before Maggy’s wedding, Erin took a bus to the airport to meet her mother, even though her mother had insisted otherwise.
Erin watched for a petit waif of a woman who was normally withdrawn from outsiders, but in contrast was bold with her own children.
Twenty minutes passed, then thirty and fifty and she hadn’t shown up. Other travellers had come and gone and the waiting area had cleared out. Erin was anxious and began to worry that her mother was lost or in trouble.
However right then, the doors opened and through it came a stream of people from Kinkerry, laughing and carrying on as if they were having a party.
When the Irish delegation spotted Erin, each one called out her name, and Erin’s face flushed red with the greeting. They hugged and pinched, and patted down her feathers, as if she was a bird fallen from a nest.
Kerry spoke up, “You’ll smother the girl. Give her some room to breathe.”
The others stepped back and Erin sighed, “I wasn’t expect’n the lot o’ you.”
Erin’s mother explained that they had come to New York as a group to buy fabric and to meet distributors for their new business. They had started a clothing company and their designs were so popular that they could barely keep up with the orders.
The group kept moving and left Erin standing behind.
Kerry waved “goodbye” and said that she had to hurry because there was a lot of stitching to do, to finish samples for the buyers.
Erin stood alone at the airport once again, and somehow felt more alone than when she had arrived.
It wasn’t until later in the evening at the rehearsal dinner, that she realized just how much the people in her life liked to keep their distance from one another.
When Maggy made a toast to Peter, she was interrupted by her father and mother who were arguing, and Peter was distracted by his parents who would not speak to each other at all.
Many of the guests had been separated from each other for years.
The small gathering of family and friends carried with them a history of stark differences, from the beginnings of eternal hope to the unfolding of unrelenting regret.
If their coming together for Maggy and Peter was a “rehearsal” for life, then its future was going to be a challenge.
When it came time to leave, Kelly, Erin, Finola and her sisters, shared a cab back to the apartment.
During the drive, Erin stared out the window.
Suddenly, she saw the sign for the “Dyeing To Meet You” shop, and yelled, “Stop here! I’ll be right back.”
The driver pulled over and Erin jumped out.
“What on earth?” grumbled Finola.
“What is this place?”
“It’s where we had the shoes dyed,” explained Kelly.
At the mention of shoes the ladies had to have a look, and so they all jumped out and hurried inside.
Erin was already at the counter paying for the pearl necklace when the others entered and browsed the aisles. The little plastic beads with the butterfly on the clasp couldn’t be more loved by Erin, as she held the velvet bag tight to her body.
“Fake breaks!” snapped Finola as she passed by Erin at the counter.
“It’s not going to break,” objected Erin.
“That’s what they all say. Everything breaks.”
Erin put the smooth velvet bag in her pocket for safe keeping, and when she went to bed that night, she put it under her pillow.
“Everything breaks,” she repeated over and over in her mind as she drifted off to sleep.