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By Margaret BrennanPublished 3 months ago 4 min read



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Tommy’s dreams of getting an education began taking on a firm reality. Breaking his own concentration, he smiled and said, “Persistent. That means sorta like a nag, right Mel?” he teased her as his smile turned into a huge grin.

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“You know, Mel,” he said still teasing, “like you, kinda. You know! You are persistent in makin’ me study. You’re a nag!”

“Thomas! How can you say things like that when you know I’m trying to help you?” She couldn’t hide her laughter.

Tommy suddenly became serious. “Mel, I know I get grumpy sometimes. Sometimes, I say things I probably shouldn’t. I’m sorry for that.”

He picked up one of the books as an indication of his new accomplishments. “When I think of what I can do now, compared to what I couldn’t do last year, I have you to thank for it all.”

Tommy, with the help and encouragement of Drs. Morgan and Sutherland, sought and was able to secure a seat in a prominent school for the following year. His grades had improved drastically. Thoughts of attending a trade school were beginning to seem like a distant past memory. His mind was like a sponge – just soaking up information as if he couldn’t get enough of it. If he thought time moved quickly after the accident, it moved with the speed of a freight train through his seventh grade. Although he was a jumble of nerves, he was also thrilled that he was doing so well – well enough to be able to help Mary Ellen with the math homework she so thoroughly detested.

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The day turned into a pleasant, warm July evening as Tommy and Uncle Jimmy walked up to Mary Ellen’s house and rang the bell. Tommy looked nervously at his uncle and said, “You know, Uncle Jimmy, it seems as if it’s only been a few weeks since I first rang this doorbell, instead of just last year.”

“Tom, my boy,” Uncle Jimmy started to say as he proudly put his arm around his nephew, “So much has happened. You’ve grown up so much. I can’t even begin to tell you how proud you keep makin’ me.”

The door opened and there stood Mary Ellen in the prettiest blue dress Tommy ever saw. It seemed to make her eyes glow neon blue beneath the porch light. He couldn’t help but think, when that girl grows up, she’s gonna make some lucky guy real happy. Then almost as if he thought someone might read his mind, he lowered his eyes and blushed.

Although Mary Ellen’s family often welcomed Tommy and his uncle to their home, everyone but Tommy knew of the special reason for tonight’s dinner.

“Oh, Uncle Jimmy, Tommy! Come in. Dinner’s almost ready.” She stood on her toes to kiss Jimmy’s cheek.

Tommy sniffed the air and smiled with anticipation and appreciation. “M-m-m! Mel, whatever yer mom's makin’ sure smells good.”

Jimmy, using his elbow, poked Tommy in the ribs. “Oh, sorry,” Tommy corrected himself, “whatever your mom’s making sure smells good.”

Jimmy smiled at his nephew indicating pride in his nephew’s new manners.

“Tommy, I want to show you something,” Mary Ellen invited. “Uncle Jimmy, Dad said he’d meet you upstairs in his library.”

“Hold on! Not so fast!” Mrs. Morgan shouted from the kitchen. “You can stand right there until I say hello to two of my favorite people.” Mary Ellen shrugged and said, “Guess you better wait here for my mom.”

While they waited, Jimmy grasped Mary Ellen’s hands, took a step back, and said, “Mel, honey, you’re absolutely beautiful. You get more beautiful every time I see you. That dress really does make your eyes shine.”

“Thank you, Uncle Jimmy. Mom bought me this dress for my birthday. I was just dying to wear it again. Do you really like it? It’s not too frilly, is it? Mom says it makes my eyes look bluer. Tommy ..”

Tommy jumped up and put his hand over her mouth. “Shh, Mel!” He laughed as he continued, “Mel, I know your motor runs on double time, but please! You talk so fast; you make ME lose my breath.”

As they all laughed, Jimmy said, “Tom, stop teasin’ the girl.”

Mrs. Morgan approached and heard their conversation and added, "Mary Ellen’s always been that way. In fact, when she was about three years old, her father called her Motor Mouth because he never thought she’d stop talking long enough to breathe.”

“MOM!” Mary Ellen screeched with embarrassment.

Suddenly, much to Tommy’s surprise, Mrs. Morgan gave him a hug and said as she kissed his cheek, “Tommy, Congratulations. I can’t begin to tell you how proud I am of you.”

Before Tommy could say a word, he heard, “Ah, I thought I heard a loud screech. I figured it had to be Mary Ellen,” said Dr. Morgan as he descended the stairs. He offered his hand to Jimmy and invited him upstairs.

Mrs. Morgan suggested that Mary Ellen put the TV on in the den to one of her favorite science programs while she finished cooking dinner. As quickly as the den door closed behind Mary Ellen and Tommy, Mrs. Morgan heard a gentle rap on the front door.

She opened the door to her new visitors, Dr. Sutherland and his wife, Alice. “Come in, come in! Tommy will be so surprised.”

Thank you for reading Now Will Ya Leave Me Alone? I’m working on another segment. Please stay tuned to see what else might happen to Tommy and Mary Ellen.





Short Story

About the Creator

Margaret Brennan

I am a 76 year old grandmother who loves to write, fish, and grab my camera to capture the beautiful scenery I see around me.

My husband and I found our paradise in Punta Gorda Florida where the weather always keeps us guessing.

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Comments (4)

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  • waseem Chemist3 months ago


  • Oh wow, can't believe a year has passed. Time goes by so fast. Sad to know this series is coming to an end.

  • I’m finally up to date and sadly the end is in sight… a delightful read, thanks.🤩

  • Babs Iverson3 months ago

    Awww! A surprise!!! Fabulous chapter!!!

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