In Plain Sight

In Plain Sight by Lorena McCourtney Page B

Book: In Plain Sight by Lorena McCourtney Read Free Book Online
Authors: Lorena McCourtney
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over a huge magnolia blossom emblazoned on the back?
    Magnolia Margollin, my neighbor from back on Madison Street, rushed out of the motor home the minute my Thunderbird rolled into the driveway.
    “Ivy!” She wrapped her arms around me and gave me one of her big, bosomy hugs, all-enveloping as a wraparound pillow. “It’s so good to see you! Running off without a word—”
    “I left a note on your back door. And I told Dix and Haley to get in touch and tell you I was fine.”
    She stood back, still holding my hand, and looked me over critically. “Well, yes, you do look fine.”
    Magnolia looked fine too, her robust, Victorian-style figure and creamy magnolia complexion radiating vigor and good health. Her hair was a ripe tomato now, piled into a coronet on top her head and decorated with a silk magnolia in back. Her earrings were also magnolias, of course. Her gauzy caftan swirled around her in a dreamy mist of leafy green. As had occurred to me before, when I first discovered my own aged-into-invisibility status, flamboyant Magnolia would never be invisible.
    Husband Geoff came out of the motor home, his wiry figure in tan pants and khaki shirt a conservative foil for Magnolia’s splendor. He’s much more reserved than she is, but he gave me a hug too. I was so glad to see them, and yet I couldn’t help but feel dismay that they’d located me without apparent difficulty.
    “I didn’t think anyone knew where I was. How did you find me?” I asked, trying not to sound ungrateful that they were here.
    Magnolia laughed. “Oh, Ivy, where else would you be, except down here in Arkansas with the only family you have?”
    Well, no high-tech detective work involved here. Thirty seconds of thought, and Magnolia and Geoff had it figured out. And they were right. Where else would I be except here with niece DeeAnn and family? An elemental fact that the Braxtons, with minimal investigation, might also deduce.
    That brought me up short. But then I reasoned that if they hadn’t zapped me yet, they probably weren’t going to. No reason for them to delay if they had some lethal scheme in mind.
    I invited Magnolia and Geoff in, and they told me about what was going on back on Madison Street. A shoddy place called the Exotic Flower Club had closed down, which we all agreed was good riddance. A rumor was going around that some big chain wanted to buy up everything in the area and put in a motel and conference center. The Margollins’ personal news was that they were on their way to a powwow in Oklahoma. Magnolia, in her enthusiasm for genealogical research, had discovered that she may have a few drops of American Indian blood, and she was rushing off to claim any distant relatives. I was sometimes afraid Magnolia would be soundly rejected by some newfound “relative,” but she was so enthusiastic and good-hearted that so far it hadn’t happened.
    Mac MacPherson’s name came up briefly, but they hadn’t heard from him and I had only that vague postcard, so there wasn’t much to say.
    We all went to watch Sandy practice at the gymnastics studio that evening. She didn’t put in the kind of practice hours that Olympic hopefuls do, but she had a big gymnastics meet in Fayetteville coming up shortly and was practicing harder than usual now. She looked incredible to me, strutting and balancing on that narrow beam, flipping across the mat like some acrobatic butterfly, whirling around on those parallel bars until my head spun just watching her.
    The following day was Easter Sunday. Skye had spent the night with us, and she and Sandy and I got up early for sunrise services. Later, Magnolia and Geoff, though not frequent churchgoers, accompanied us to services at the regular hour, stayed for a ham dinner, and left about 4:00. One thing about a motor home, your bed is right there with you, so you can pick up and move any time of day or night. They planned to park at a rest area or shopping mall somewhere along the way that

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