Part #3 - the last part of the story!
It was the day that the owners of Honey were coming to pick him up - and make sure he was the right dog.
Elizabeth walked by the girls' bedroom in the cabin and she noticed Payton sitting alone with Honey. She wasn't speaking, she was just staring on sadly. Elizabeth stepped into the room and moved towards Payton. Payton didn't even look at her.
"Payton?" Elizabeth asked quietly. There was no response. Payton just continued to look away. "I heard that you're sort of fighting with Grace right now. I know you don't want Honey to leave."
Payton nodded. "Did you notice that I didn't want Honey to leave? Do you think everyone noticed?"
"It was kind of hard not to notice, Payton," Elizabeth said gently.
"I was so selfish," Payton cried softly as a tear rolled down her cheek. "All I could think about was keeping Honey for myself. I couldn't think of anything else. I wanted Honey to be found by his owners at first, but then I changed my mind."
"I don't think you were so selfish, you know," Elizabeth told Payton as she leaned in to pet Honey who sat contently on Payton's lap. "We all wanted Honey to stay; I think that it was a rather natural reaction."
"Maybe," Payton sniffled. "I still really don't want him to leave.""Well the owners aren't here yet - why don't you go take him for a walk?" Elizabeth tried to brighten Payton's mood.
Payton wiped her tears away, "I think that could be a great idea." She got up with Honey and they left for the chilly outdoors.
When she walked in, Grace was just standing up from the desk. Payton groaned inside; Grace was the last person she wanted to see. "Hi," Payton mumbled. Then she realized that it would do no good to avoid Grace; she'd need to apologize.
Grace was about to leave, but Payton spoke, "Grace," Grace spun around and came over to Payton, "I'm sorry I shouted at you yesterday - you were right, I was being selfish."
"I'm sorry too; I shouldn't have accused you like that," Grace looked Payton in the eye, "But returning Honey has a lot of meaning to me - out of all of us, it is probably most important to me."
"What do you mean?" Payton looked puzzled. Why was returning Honey that much more important to Grace?
Grace looked down and grew quiet before collecting herself, "I lost a dog once too - back in Paris." Grace's eyes began to tear up. "I was devastated and I searched everywhere for BonBon, but I couldn't find her. That was a year ago and she was never found. I didn't want to come here to America because I didn't want to leave behind the possibility - the chance - of finding her. If someone had found my BonBon, I wouldn't have wanted them to keep her from me, and I like to believe that there is someone out there who feels the same way about Honey."
Payton was surprised - she couldn't remember Grace talking that much during her entire stay in America. "I'm - I don't know what to say, Grace. I'm sorry."
"Thank you, Payton," Grace smiled weakly before leaving the room.
An hour later, Jasmine walked into the room along with a lady and a little girl that Payton supposed must be the owners of Honey.
"Hello," Payton rose from her seat.
"Hello, I'm Suzanne Bright - I'm here to take a look at Honey and see if he is our missing dog! It is nice to meet you."
"I'm Payton - nice to meet you too, ma'am," Payton used her best manners. She couldn't help but notice that Suzanne and the young girl with her were both wearing very old and tattered clothing and both looked very tired.
"I'll go get Honey," Jasmine left the room and went for Honey who was playing in another cabin.
"It would mean so much to my daughter, Mabel, if this is Honey," Suzanne told Payton as her voice got a sad edge to it. "I lost my husband about a year ago and there was a fire at our house about two weeks ago - that night is the night Honey went missing, it was so hard to keep track of him in all of the commotion."
"Oh, I'm so sorry," Payton told her. "I really hope this is the right Honey too." Payton had heard enough sad stories for one day!
Jasmine handed Honey to Payton, who bent down to hold him to the girl; Mabel who had been shyly standing next to her mother the whole time. Mabel timidly stepped towards Honey, reaching her hand out.
Then she broke into a big smile. "It's him! Oh Honey it's you!" Mabel smiled up at Payton as Honey reached towards Mabel to lick her face.
Mabel sat on the chair with Honey as Suzanne smiled and went outside to call Dr. Paisley to confirm that Honey was their dog. Mabel just sat there, smiling happily and Honey sat on her lap, wagging his tail harder than he had during his entire stay at the farm.
"I'm so happy you found your dog!" Jasmine smiled at Mabel. Even Payton was all smiles as they talked to Mabel. She was so sweet and Jasmine and Payton both felt bad that Mabel might not have a good place to go for Thanksgiving.
"Mabel, do you think you'd want to come for Thanksgiving to this place again?" Payton asked her.
"You mean to eat all that delicious food? Could I bring Honey too?" Mabel began to get excited.
Neither girl had talked it over with the adults just yet, but they knew it would be okay. "Sure you can! We'd love to have you and Honey and your mom again!"
"This has been the best day ever," Mabel smiled as she jumped off the chair and into Jasmine and Payton's arms. "Thank you for finding Honey," she whispered.
"Mabel, are you ready to go?" Suzanne came back in from talking with Dr. Paisley.
"Okay!" Mabel smiled. "Mommy, they invited us to Thanksgiving, here! I can even bring Honey too!"
Suzanne smiled at the girls, "Thank you girls - thank you so much. I had no idea what we were going to do for Thanksgiving. This is really special. Thank you!"
The girls just nodded. "We hope to see you soon!" They called as Mabel and her mother walked off, with Mabel carrying Honey.
After they left, Jasmine went to get ready for basketball practice and Grace and Payton were left alone once more.
"Well that felt really good," Payton smiled at Grace. "You know, Grace, maybe that will happen to you one day with BonBon - you never know."
Grace shrugged. "Maybe. I like to hope so, and even if it doesn't happen, at least we were able to make it happen for someone else."
That is the ending of the Library Dog story! I am already taking photos for my next story (which will involve ballet and The Nutcracker). I'm pretty busy, so I have no idea when/if it will ever get up here on this blog, so I'm not going to make any promises.
What did you think of the story? I'd love to hear!