Down the Road

Chapter Nine

by Melinda Kay Jenkinson

Living Water at the Oasis
Living Water at the Oasis

Down the Road
Chapter Nine

By the time they got to the civic center the next day, the parking lot was beginning to fill up.

"This has to be the biggest place I've spoken at so far." Kaye Leigh said amazed.

"It is and they told me everyday has sold out." Becki said smiling at her.

"When did you find that out?" Kaye Leigh asked stunned.

"This morning, but don't worry Kaye Leigh you will be great like always." Becki said encouragingly. Kaye Leigh just nodded; they had sold out three days, how many people are going to be in there?

When they got inside, it took a little while because people would stop her, she did not mind though, they met a woman named Lacey. She would be doing the introduction each day. As Lacey made the introductions Kaye Leigh was hoping, she would be able to remember everyone's names later.

"Is there anything you need Mrs. Rutherford?" Lacey asked.

"Call me Kaye Leigh please. I will need a glass of water on the stage where I can get to it easily and I would like a quite room so I can be alone for about a half an hour." She replied.

"Ok if you will follow me." Lacey said.

"I'll see you two later." She said giving Jeff a hug and a kiss.

Jeff and Becki were shown to seats in front of the stage.

"This is a huge crowd." Jeff said amazed.

"She will be fine." Becki said nodding. A few minutes later a Christian singing group started to perform. Then a half hour later Lacey walked out onto the stage.

"Good morning ladies and gentlemen, it's great that so many could make it. I hope that you have your tickets for all three days because we've sold out." Lacey said. Applause broke out. "I have the great privilege to be introducing our speaker today. You will be amazed and inspired by her story just as I was, and I know that each of you will take something away from today.

All three of her books have sold millions of copies worldwide and each has been on the bestseller list. Her recently released fourth book is following close behind. She walked through a terrible darkness for years almost allowing Satan to take her. She emerged into God's holy light a remarkable woman. She currently lives in Texas with her husband and four children. Ladies and gentlemen please welcome Kaye Leigh Williams-Rutherford." As she finished applause broke out and as Kaye Leigh walked out people began to stand up, Kaye Leigh waved and bowed.

Kaye Leigh never stood in one place while she was talking so she always used the hands free microphones.

"This is a huge crowd, I am shocked!" she said as people began to quiet down. "Thank you very much! When my publicist told me, they sold out all three days I was amazed. I never thought there would be this many people who would be interested in my story." She said shaking her head.

"Before we get started let's take the time to dedicate this day to the Lord because without Him I would not be here today." She bowed her head and the audience followed, then she began to pray.

"Thank you again. People have asked me what makes your story better than someone else's does, my answer is nothing. It's not better or worse than anyone else's it's the fact that God gave me the ability to write about it in poetry, write about different issues that I faced in my romance books, and to write my full story without shame. He also allows me to get up in front of people and talk about it in hopes that it ministers to others. Believe it or not talking about anything in front of people is not a strong point of mine." She said. People laughed.

Taking a sip of water Kaye Leigh began to tell her story. The abuse she suffered at the hands of a neighbor during her childhood, the feelings of guilt, shame, and anger that she buried deep within her. Hating God for allowing it to happen, hating everyone around her, hating herself, and feeling as if the world owed her everything. She told them about how she went down the dark path of drinking and sexual immorality. Kaye Leigh ended the day's session there. As she waved to the crowd and left the stage, she noticed many people in the front were wiping their eyes, including Jeff and Becki. People stood and clapped as she left the stage, Lacey was back telling the audience to come back tomorrow for the next part of her story.

Sam had not taken his eyes off Kaye Leigh from the moment she walked on the stage. He did not believe much of what she told the audience but he could see that she was making a whole lot of money, which would be very good for him when they were together again. In person, she was very beautiful, he had wanted to go up to the stage and get her, but he needed to wait until this evening when he could drop the bombshell on her. People responded to her, she had a way of connecting with them, he could see why they believed everything that she tells them. He found her again before she was leaving; she was with a man who he recognized from the pictures, and another woman he had never seen before, probably another one of her husband's flings.

"You were great as always." Becki said.

"Thanks, for a minute there when I first walked out there I wasn't sure I was going to be able to talk, there were so many people." She said. Becki laughed.

"Let's go guys." Jeff said holding the door open for them; a taxi was waiting for them.

They went back to the hotel and were starting to get ready for Breckman's.

"Are you sure you want to do this Kaye Leigh?" Jeff asked when they got into their room.

"Yes I'm sure." She said kissing him.

He did not say anything else but watched her go into the bathroom. He wanted to just keep her in their room all night, he was sure that this was not going to turn out good. He did not understand why she felt she had to do this, and he was angry that she was doing it. He trusted Kaye Leigh one hundred percent, that was not an issue, but he did not trust Sam as far as he could throw him.

Kaye Leigh had decided that she was not going to dress up for a few reasons; first, she did not want to upset Jeff anymore than he was, and second she did not want Sam to get the wrong impression. She took a shower, dried off, put on a pair of jeans, a shirt and her boots. Put her hair up in a ponytail, and just a touch of make-up. Her necklace, engagement ring, and wedding rings were the only jewelry she wore.

When she came out of the bathroom, Jeff was watching her.

"Are you ok?" she asked him.

"Does it really matter?" he replied.

"Yes it matters to me." She said.

"Then don't go." He said. Kaye Leigh sighed.

"Never mind I know you have to." He said briskly.

"Jeff please." She started.

"Let's get going Becki will be waiting." He said cutting across her words.

She looked at him, shook her head, grabbed her purse, and went out the door without bothering to make sure he was coming. Becki was waiting for them in the lobby.

"Why are you wearing your boots?" Becki asked while they were waiting for the taxi.

"I didn't want to dress up and give Sam the wrong impression." She said looking down at her boots. Becki laughed.

"Kaye Leigh even as stupid as that man is he is still going to notice that you're beautiful." Becki said.

"Well I'm only out to impress one person, right Jeff?" she said. "Whatever." He said as the taxi pulled up. He opened the door and they all climbed in.

"Where are you guys going to be?" Kaye Leigh asked lightly.

"Hopefully at a table close to you." Becki said.

"Wherever you decide to put us." Jeff put in.

"Jeff I'm sorry that you are angry with me, but you don't have to be a jerk." She said angrily. Jeff looked at her but did not say anything. When they got to Breckman's Kaye Leigh just walked inside and asked for Sam's table without a word to Jeff or Becki. A waiter led her to the back of the restaurant where a table was set up for a romantic dinner for two.

Jeff watched her walk away and fought the urge to go after her.

"You know Jeff she feels like she had to do this, like its part of the whole forgiveness thing for her. She feels bad that obviously it's against your wishes." Becki told him as they waited to be seated.

"I just don't understand any of it. I know that Kaye Leigh doesn't follow orders, and I would never tell her not to do something, but I always thought that she would at least talk to me about it before she made up her mind." He said shaking his head.

"She loves you more than anything Jeff." Becki said.

"I know she does." He said smiling at her. "I just don't trust Sam." Becki laughed.

"Who does? I don't even think Kaye Leigh trusts him." She said.

Morgan had made the reservations so she did not understand why the table was set up like that but she was not going to encourage Sam in anyway. Kaye Leigh ordered an iced tea while she waited. She could not see where Jeff and Becki were, which was probably a good thing since Jeff was so angry with her. She put her hand on her cross and vowed to make it up to Jeff tonight.

Kaye Leigh had been there about ten minutes when she seen the waiter leading Sam over to the table. One look at him and she knew he had not changed at all. He looked the same; she wondered what it was she ever saw in him. He still walked with the same arrogance that he always had. Flee my child. That voice was back again, but this time she just ignored it completely.

Sam was watching her reaction to seeing him; he thought that he saw something flash in her eyes..

He sat down and said to the waiter, "I'll take a beer and a rum and coke for the lady."

"I'm all set!" Kaye Leigh said quickly before the waiter left. "I don't drink Sam." She told him when they were alone.

He smiled at her. "You look amazing Kaye Leigh." He said looking at her.

"Thank you, you look well." She said, she was very uncomfortable with the way he was starring at her. "I'm glad that you and Morgan seem to be doing well. I got remarried almost three years ago, we live in Texas now." She told him.

"I had heard that you got remarried, I was surprised after all this time, and how is that working for you by the way?" he said smiling.

"It's great, we are very happy and I love Jeff more than anything." She said smiling.

He could not believe how beautiful she was and when she smiled her whole, face lit up.

"Morgan really loves you too Sam, she really wants your marriage to work out." She continued.

"I'm sure she does." He replied. He was beginning to think that Morgan and Jeff set up this whole thing. "When was the last time you spoke to my dear wife?" he asked interestedly.

"Weeks ago, that's why I am here." She replied. Sam watched her, she might not have initiated this meeting, but he was going to take full advantage of it.

"She did say that now that I think about it. I don't have a real good memory anymore." He said smiling again. "So Kaye Leigh tell me about your husband Jeff, is that his name?"

"Yes, he's wonderful and I can't begin to tell you just how happy I am. He is also from Michigan, we moved to Texas before we got married, well I moved there, I was running and he caught up with me down there.." she said laughing. Sam forced a laugh. "He had two kids also, and is a doctor." She finished.

Sam was watching her talk, poor kid he thought. She had no clue as to what her husband was like and he was going to take immense pleasure in showing her exactly who he was. Then when she was devastated he would take pleasure in comforting her, he almost laughed aloud at the thought.

"Is he better than I was Kaye Leigh?" he asked her.

"You two are different just like Morgan and I are different." She replied.

"Dance with me Kaye Leigh." He said standing up and holding out his had to her.

"Ok." She said taking his hand. Things were going good and she did not want to ruin it, she knew that Jeff would not be happy but she would make it up to him.

Sam let her out onto the dance floor; he put one arm around her waist, put his other hand in hers, and started turning with the music. He was thinking about how good she felt in his arms, and about how perfectly they went together. He leaned his head against hers.

"Please don't do that Sam." She said putting some distance between them.

"Sorry." Sam said.

Jeff had seen them walking to the dance floor hand in hand, he had every desire to go over there and pull her out of his arms.

"Why would she want him to touch her?" Jeff said angrily.

"Jeff, she loves only you don't ever doubt it. I know Sam is a jerk, but Kaye Leigh isn't." Becki said.

"I know that she loves me." Jeff said wearily. "I just want to go over there and hit him or something." Becki laughed.

"That might make Kaye Leigh just a little upset." She said. "I could go over there and do it for you of course." He laughed.

"You could probably take him." He said.

"No doubt in my mind." She replied laughing again.

When the song ended, they went and sat back down at the table.

"Just like old times huh Kaye Leigh?" Sam said.

"We're not trying to live in the past Sam, we're letting it go. Would you even want to live the way we did again?" she replied.

"Do you really want to let go of our past Kaye Leigh?" he asked taking her hand in his.

"I've already let it go Sam; I am extremely happy where I am at." She said taking her hand out of his as the waiter set their dinners down in front of them. "Thank you." She said to the waiter.

"That's right Kaye Leigh Williams has the perfect life now doesn't she? A perfect rich doctor for a husband, a great ranch, and of course the most important thing is she has all the money she could ever want. But you know something Kaye Leigh for as perfect as you think you are, you are incredibly stupid." He said looking straight into her eyes. Kaye Leigh waited until the waiter left to reply.

"What are you talking about Sam?" she asked.

"You think that your husband it the perfect man. That he loves you and only you. You think that he would never betray you or lie to you, never intentionally hurt you?" He said harshly. Kaye Leigh was not sure where this was coming from all of the sudden, but she was trying to remain calm, she grasped her cross in her hand and felt comforted.

"Yes Sam I do believe that Jeff loves only me, I believe that he would never betray me, lie to me or intentionally hurt me." She replied.

Sam started laughing.

"Look at these Kaye Leigh, and then tell me what you think." He said throwing an envelope on the table in between them. Kaye Leigh looked at it then at Sam.

"What is that?" she asked.

"Look at it Kaye Leigh or are you too afraid to know the truth?" he said. She picked up the envelope, opened it, and dumped the contents out onto the table. She picked up a receipt for a hotel in Peace Ridge, it was on Jeff's business credit card, and he had signed the receipt.

Kaye Leigh was having trouble breathing, she shook her head.

"Come on Kaye Leigh keep looking don't stop now, the best is yet to come." Sam said laughing. She looked up at him, tears were filling her eyes. Looking back down at the things lying on the table with a shaky hand she picked up a picture. It was Morgan and Jeff smiling arm in arm in a motel room. They were half dressed and looked like they were having the time of their lives. She looked at all the pictures closely; this was her husbands' body, how many times had she seen it. She was looking for anything that would show this was not really him, but she could find nothing.

"Where did you get these?" she asked quietly still looking for something she knew she would not find.

"Someone thought that I should know what my dear wife was up to, and I thought you should know too so that you wouldn't have that false image that Jeff was perfect." He told her. Kaye Leigh laughed; she refused to cry in front of Sam.

"This is the real reason that you came here tonight isn't it Sam? Be honest for once in your miserable life. You wanted to make sure that I knew that I made another stupid choice in husbands and that you two are just alike." She said still laughing.

"I came here tonight Kaye Leigh to help you, to get you back and to show you that I am the only one who will ever truly love you." He said. Kaye Leigh continued to laugh, shook her head, picked up the pictures and receipts put them back into the envelope.

She looked at Sam and said, "You can't help me Sam, God can't help me, the only person who can help me now is myself."

"I love you Kaye Leigh." He said loudly. People from other tables started looking at them. Kaye Leigh stood up, took the envelope, and looked at Sam.

"Sam you never learned how to love someone, you use and abuse them, but you never love them. I don't love you and I can promise that I never will." Kaye Leigh said as she turned and walked away.

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