Ruth hadn’t expected to meet a single person out here in the wooded mountains. [Meeting] David had been a complete accident, though how it was possible to be found in the same general area as his cabin escaped her.
It wasn’t as if I had any way to get myself away from him – keep him from becoming a target like me – at the time. She had been unconscious, bleeding, wet and cold. David had acted without considering possible [ramifications].
And now he’s a target. Ruth knew of only one way to stop him from being attacked and probably killed by Peter’s henchmen. They would have to run away. Together. She wasn’t sure how he would take that.
It’s the only way for us both to survive, she argued with herself as though speaking with David. It seemed like a small, [petty] [argument], but it was all she had.
Straightening her shoulders and lifting her chin – both with resolve – she walked toward the clearing where David went to chop wood when feeling upset. She now understood it was a way for him to deal with his emotions. How emotional was he right now? She would soon find out.
I hope he won’t hold it against me that he’s in danger now. Ruth pushed aside a branch hanging in her way, continuing to [march] her way in the direction from which she could hear him working.
It sounds like he’s [hacking] away with a vengeance, she thought, pausing to listen to the steady, brisk ringing of his axe. I wonder if it’s a smart idea for me to go and give him more bad news right now? Ruth hesitated. Looked behind her in his general direction.
You can trust him, Ruth, she scolded herself, you know that as well as you know your own name. That proved to be [her undoing], since she didn’t know her name. She only remembered her last name, and that was of little help to them in finding out who she was.
At least I remembered enough about Peter to keep David informed. Ruth tucked some hair behind her ear, the tickle from her nose more bothersome and annoying than she cared to let on. What could she do now? The man who attacked her in the woods was one of Peter’s men. Of that much she was certain.
David hadn’t wanted to leave her alone while he went and attacked the logs waiting to be cut. But Ruth insisted he go about his everyday chores like nothing had changed. His arguments were somewhat valid – she was in danger so how could he leave her? – but she refused to think God wasn’t protecting her.
“He’ll keep me safe, David,” she told him every day, hoping to relieve the stress and [stress] visible on his face. Her faith in God had become so strong since putting her trust in Him that even David was astonished by the depth.
Ruth smiled now just thinking about his expression each morning when she reassured him. It had become less [amazed] over time, but his [astonishment] was still visible, even after more than a week of hearing it.
A snapping twig caught her immediate attention, and she spun around to look behind her. David knew not to approach her without warning her, so she came to only two conclusions. It could be some forest creature coming through the trees. That would be far easier for her to deal with than the other choice. She sucked in a breath realizing how deep her [fear] actually went at the mere possibility.
It could also be one of Peter’s men – or several – coming for her. She had no doubt that Peter would continue to stalk her and hunt her until she had been captured.
He’ll kill David on sight, she realized as she backed up against a tree. Sinking down she peered around hoping to spot whoever [stalker]. She didn’t see anything, and started to relax. It had to have been a raccoon or some other creature.
Ruth sucked in a breath, then another, and a third. She at last stood tall once more, ignoring her pounding heart as best she could. She then continued on to the [cabin], her thoughts struggling to return to lunch preparations. What was left in the cupboards?
Ruth hesitated on the front porch, glancing behind her as she grasped the door knob in her sweaty hand. Nothing out of the ordinary greeted her and she attempted to shrug off the uncertainty raging in her chest. Turning the knob and pushing the door open she went inside, closing the [door] behind her.
I want to hear if someone opens this door and comes inside, she reasoned as she went through the living room and entered the kitchen. She stopped short, her breath catching in her throat as she eyed the man sitting at the table.
His dark hair and dirty, scraggly beard were bad enough. His dark eyes stared at her like a penetrating [spear]. Her throat went dry and she took a small step back, the scream she wanted very much to emit catching in her throat.