Here is Part #1 of the photo story!:
Mary woke up one sunny Monday morning. It was the start of a new week, and Ms. Beadle was hosting a history bee. Mary had studied hard and was very excited. As she did her braids though, and washed up a bit before doing her light chore work, eating breakfast, and getting to school, Mary didn't feel so great. It had sort of started as a stomach ache when she had woken up, but now she felt almost light headed. She pushed those thoughts away - she figured it was just because she was nervous about the history bee. She still couldn't get that strange feeling to go away, so she decided to see what Laura thought she should do. She didn't want to tell Ma, because she knew she would miss school, but she also didn't want to have to come home sick!
"Laura, wake up, Laura!" Mary whispered urgently. She was feeling sicker by the minute.
"Uh, uh," Laura grunted.
"Come on, Laura, wake up! I need to ask you something," Mary urged, gently shaking her sister. who turned around to face Mary slowly, but didn't open her eyes.
"I don't feel good Mary, I think I'm sick," Laura whispered before rolling back over and falling asleep once again.
Mary hadn't gotten to ask her if she was feeling okay, but from what Laura had said, and from her behavior of going back to sleep, she knew Laura must be sick too. Mary decided she had better stay home too.
"Mary, Laura? Pa has already left, you're late. You didn't come in time for breakfast," Ma called up into their loft.
"Ma, we can't - we don't feel good," Mary yelled down, using all her strength to yell. She was getting sicker and weaker by the minute. She knew Ma wouldn't make them go to school, but Mary still wished she could.
"What? I'm coming up there right this instant," Ma called up, and Mary could hear her mother start to climb the loft stairs.
"Oh my, you really are sick," Ma frowned worriedly. 'I'm going to make you a bit of herbal tea. Dr. Baker always makes his rounds on Mondays and Saturdays, so he should be over sometime today - hopefully sooner than later," Ma told them, closing the blinds to the window so that it was darker in the room, then, with her skirts swinging frantically, she hurried back down the steps.
Mary slid back under the covers and back to bed. She was very, very, sick and tired. But she knew that Ma's herbal tea would make her better - it always did.
Eventually, after a small dose of Ma's tea, Dr. Baker's horse and carriage parked outside of the Ingalls' house, and Dr. Baker knocked on the door, and after hearing about Laura and Mary, quickly went up to their room.
"Mary, Laura, how do you feel?" Dr. Baker asked as he unloaded his little black medical case and prepared to do a few small tests.
"Terrible, it hurts in my head and my stomach, and I feel hot sometimes and cold sometimes, I feel very sick," Mary replied, exhausted from the small amount of words she had just said. Laura didn't answer, so Mary answered for her, "Laura felt the same way - but she hasn't woken up since the tea Ma gave us."
"Hmm," Dr. Baker thought, "I see." Dr. Baker checked Mary out and Laura too. Finally, he sighed and adjusted his shirt and wiped his hands. "Alright, well, I'll go down and talk to your Ma now," Dr. Baker told them.
"Am I sick?" Mary asked, almost forgetting to add, "Is Laura sick?"
"Yes, you are both very sick," Dr. Baker told Mary. "But don't worry, you aren't missing school today, a few others in the town and some towns nearby came down with this same thing. No one is really allowed around town."
"Where is Pa, then?" Mary asked.
"He agreed to help me with my patients, he is in town right now, picking up some supplies from my office, and then we are going to head off a bit further into some other towns," Dr. Baker told her, "I must give your Ma some orders and talk to her, I will come to check back on you."
Mary nodded and tried to fall back to sleep. She couldn't though. She was a little worried about what was going to happen to them. Dr. Baker had seemed so solemn that it had worried Mary a little.
Outside, against the house, Dr. Baker talked to Ma.
"They really are sick," Dr. Baker her told her, hints of worry lining every word he spoke. "I am only going to be gone for a small bit of today. They are already setting up sick beds in the church. If they get any worse by the time Charles and I come back, I'm going to move them there. We can't have Carrie or you get sick too. This is a very serious illness that there is no cure for. I'm not counting on many to survive it, including older and very young people. If Baby Carrie were to get this, it could be serious - more serious than it already is," Dr. Baker sighed.
"Are there any orders?" Ma asked.
"Well, like I said, there is no medicine for it, so all you can do is make sure they get some rest, and help them with whatever they need. I have a feeling they may get worse, so try to get them to eat anything they can now - once they are too sick, they won't want to eat, also, I suggested soaking their foreheads with cold water," Dr. Baker told her. "Now remember, I am seriously thinking about having them stay in the church with the rest of the sick."
"Oh, but I need them home with me," Ma cried out a bit. She was very worried by Dr. Baker's grave expression.
"Caroline," Dr. Baker spoke firmly, "We are only doing what is best for them. If we have to take them to the church then we have to. We can better care for them there," Dr. Baker told her. Ma nodded and thanked him. He got in his buggy and drove away, while she walked to the creek with the bucket to get some water.
Ma was so worried about Mary and Laura. Usually, they were never this sick. In fact, they rarely got sick at all.
Ma took the cold pitcher of water and shook the water up a bit.
Then, she took some lavender petals out to put into the water. It made the water smell very nice, and it also added a cool, refreshing texture to the water. Mary and Laura both loved the lavender.
Ma opened the fancy jar of lavender petals that Mary and Laura had received for Christmas a few years ago.
She placed the petals in the water and soaked two cloths.
Ma placed a cloth on each of their foreheads, and the girls peacefully rested. Neither of the girls were sleeping, they just lay there, praying to get better...
Part 2 coming soon!