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Louisiana, 1928, living in the Bible belt, a time when it was still unacceptable for negroes and white folks to jump the broom. My fiancé and I did not care, we were madly in love. To get away from the filthy glares and words of hatred we lived far away in the country on an estate that long ago belonged to his grandfather. My husband's name is Michael Richard Goldcrest. He is stunningly handsome with beautiful auburn hair and sparkling green blue eyes. Michael has a very straight nose that distinguishes him, and he stands six foot one. His thick eyebrows and five o’clock shadow that makes him appear very enigmatic. Michael is a very charitable man and loves everyone. I believe Michael has such an open heart because of the circumstances surrounding his childhood. His mother died during childbirth and his father left soon after, leaving Michael to never know him. Left in the care of his grandfather, Michael became the admirable man he is today.
Michael grew up on this very estate with his grandfather. Michael’s grandmother passed away many years before he was even born. No one was sure where Michael’s father had disappeared to after his birth. Michael’s father was named Abraham after the prophet in the Bible. Abraham was the only child that Michael's grandfather had. I have no name for Michael’s grandfather except Mr. J.D. Goldcrest. Michael knew him only as, “Grandfather” until a couple months after he passed. A white man we did not know one day approached us while we were at the market. He wore a brown tweed suit with a black hat upon his head. He held an old weathered leather black briefcase. He approached us and started to speak to my fiancé.
“Excuse me sir but are you Michael Richard Goldcrest, son of Abraham Goldcrest?”
“Yes, I am he.” confirmed my fiancé.
“Very good, if I may introduce myself, my name is John White,” said the man in the suit, “you may call me John or Mr. White. Michel I have some rather unfortunate news for you. May I have a minute of your time?” Mr. White and my fiancé stepped out of view but I continue to listen to them converse.
“Mr. Goldcrest, I am sorry to tell you that your grandfather passed away about a month ago.” informed Mr. White. My fiancé was silent so Mr. White continued.
“When your grandfather was alive he put me in charge of his affairs. He told me that in the event of his passing I am to find you. Because no one knows of your father’s whereabouts so you are next kin in line to take charge of your family's affairs. You are now in charge of the entire fortune and have full range to do as you please. While your grandfather was alive, he maintained the property and taxes, therefore such things should not be a problem.”
“As for my grandfather's burial arrangements? Have they been seen to or…” my fiance trailed off.
“I have taken care of everything,” informed Mr. White, “your grandfather was cremated; his ashes were cast into the forest that surrounds the estate.”
“Level with me...” Michael inquired.
“Before your grandfather passed he requested that upon his demise he immediately be cremated and taken into the forest by the wind,” explained Mr. White.
“Doesn't that seem rather odd?” asked my fiancé.
“To be frank, your grandfather was a rather mysterious man,” and Mr. White went no further on that matter. “So if you will kindly sign these documents, I can release all of your grandfather's possessions to you. I will be around occasionally if you have any questions or concerns about the estate. Also, you can feel free to telephone me, just ask for John White.” I never did see my fiancé sign the documents, but I am assuming he did because he came back to where I was by the peaches and told me the news of the house. At the time we were still engaged, it was a blessing that we would have a place to live far enough from the city. We finished our trip to the market that day and went back to our apartment to prepare ourselves for what lay ahead.
Later on that night in our one-bedroom apartment on Main Street, as I made dinner I decided to ask Michael for the details about his childhood, home and life since, after all we were going to move into the place where he grew up.
“Darling how do you feel going back to your childhood home after being away for so long?” I questioned as I put the beans on to boil.
Michael cleared his throat and then began to talk, “Well, Angelique it has been so long since I’ve been home that I almost never even think about the estate but after talking to Mr. White today it brought back all my long forgotten memories of growing up there. I remember all the adventures that my grandfather and I used to have at that magnificent house.”
“What type of adventures?” I asked.
“Well I don't know if I ever told you but I was actually homeschooled by my grandfather and he had a very different approach when it came to almost everything. Everyday we would wake up at 7am and cook a magnificent breakfast. Everyday we would make something new. Breakfast was considered the first lesson of the day because grandfather always said that a man must first learn to do for himself what he expects a woman to do for him.
“Ohhh so that’s why you always make me scrambled eggs and toast every Saturday morning for breakfast!” I teased.
Michael blushed, “I may have forgotten a few things... (To be continued)