Pearl of Promise (A Sweet Mail Order Bride Western) (The Brides of Carville)

Pearl of Promise (A Sweet Mail Order Bride Western) (The Brides of Carville) by Raina King

Book: Pearl of Promise (A Sweet Mail Order Bride Western) (The Brides of Carville) by Raina King Read Free Book Online
Authors: Raina King
Chapter 1
     
     
     
    May, 1875
    Carville, Colorado
     
     
    A thrill ran down her spine as Nora stepped off the train, suitcase in hand.  After weeks of travel, she had finally arrived.
    She was a frontier woman!
    The air smelled fresh and clean—if you ignored the coal smoke wafting from the locomotive’s steam engine—and was a refreshing change from the polluted skies of Harrisburg.
    The mountains were gorgeous.  T he books she had read about the west, and about Colorado, had not done the landscape justice.  She could imagine all kinds of adventures taking place throughout the vista before her.  What kind of people live here?  Have there been train robberies?  Indian attacks?  Wild mountain men rabble-rousing in the local saloons ?
    “Miss Finney?”
    She turned to look up at a stocky man with thick brown hair.  His eyes were as deep and dark as the silver mine he toiled in every day—an occupation which showed in his physique.  The man was broad-shouldered and muscular, every bit the dime novel adventure hero she had hoped he would be. She sighed—he was her very own rough, tough miner, who braved the wilds of Colorado to eke out an existence against the impervious Mother Nature. 
    Now life will begin in earnest!
    “Miss Finney?” the man repeated.  “I apologize, maybe I have the wrong person—”
    “Oh!  No, not at all.  I’m Nora Finney.  You must be Arlen Hunt.”  My brave and exciting mountain man!
    “Yes I am.  I’m happy you made it.  I about wrung my hat to pieces, worrying that you might have changed your mind, and hopped off the train somewhere along the line.”
    Nora giggled.  “No need to worry on that regard.  This is the most thrilling thing I’ve ever done in my whole life!  Life back in Harrisburg was so boring.  Every day was the same.  I wouldn’t miss a moment of this experience.”
    He smiled, putting his hat—which was wrinkled and crushed a bit on one side—back on his head.  “Well, then, let’s collect your baggage so we can visit the preacher and make this official, and begin the first day of the rest of our lives together.”  He took Nora’s suitcase from her hand.
    She smiled up at him.  “Let’s.  I’m eager to see what the next chapter of my life has in store for me.”
     
    **
     
    It was late afternoon as they arrived in the remote area where Arlen’s mining claim was located. 
    “There it is, up ahead.”
    Nora could just make out the log cabin in the distance.  It was nestled in a gulch between two small mountains, and already the sun was behind the mountain, casting a chill over the little valley.
    “I should have pulled out my shawl,” Nora said as they bumped along in the buckboard. 
    The spring runoff had worn winding ruts deep into the dirt road, creating the most uncomfortable wagon ride she had ever experienced. 
    “I’m sorry, I should have warned you.”  Arlen peered up at the mountain casting a shadow over them.  “Sun goes down early in the mountains.  And we’re higher up here than they are in town—and they’re at eighty-five-hundred feet down in Carville.  Summers are probably a lot cooler here than in Pennsylvania.”
    “They are.  Harrisburg was already getting quite warm when I left weeks ago.”
    “Will you mind the cooler weather?  And the snow?”
    She shook her head.  “I enjoy winter, and we got plenty of snow in Pennsylvania.  And the air seems much drier here, which probably means the snow isn’t as heavy and wet, either.”
    “I hope you enjoy the winters as much as I do.  I love the quiet and the solitude.  It’s beautiful out here, with the blankets of snow, and snow-covered tree branches.  It’s white, with patches of grey and dark green, for as far as the eye can see.”
    “It sounds lovely.  You must have all manner of exciting things happen in the winter time out here.  Have you ever had a starving Indian hole up in your barn, looking for food and a warm place to

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