A Precious Gift (by Meg)


Summary:  After a accident leaves eight year old Amelia with amnesia has a great impact on her family especially for Joe and Adam.

Rated: K+  (6,615 words)

Amelia Series:

Pa’s Favorite
My Hero
A Precious Gift
A Letter to Adam
Raising Amelia
Shatter Bond
The Talk
Cartwrights Stick Together


                                                                A Precious Gift


Chapter 1

Ages: Amelia: 8 Joe: 14 Hoss: 20 Adam: 26

A Precious Gift

The Accident


On a beautiful clear hot summer day Amelia was walking out of the house that morning to her light brown horse Sapphire. Her brother Little Joe was already outside waiting for her.

He helps her mount on her horse and gives her the reins. “Have a good last day of school” said Joe who taken that day out of school because Ben was away on business and his brothers Adam and Hoss needed help with the chores.

“Ain’t ya coming to get me after school?” asked Amelia. “I can’t today I have chores to do” said Joe. Amelia nods trying to hide her disappointment.

She rides out of the yard. On the way to school all Amelia kept thinking about was why Joe too busy to play with her or spend time with her.

She knew that if it were Adam or Hoss both of them would find time to spend with her. Amelia loved her brothers and knew they would be there for her through thick and thin.

Amelia also had a very close relationship with her father. He was the only parent she had ever known and it amazed her that he was able to raise her all on his own in a house full of men.

Later that afternoon Little Joe was over by the barn mending Cochise’s shoe that had been loosed when Adam and Hoss rode in the yard on the buckboard that was carrying bundles of hay.

“When you’re finish you can unload the hay” said Adam as he and Hoss climb down the wagon and walk over to Joe. “Sure thing older brother” said Joe as he stops what he is doing.

“Has Amelia come home from school yet?” asked Adam curiously.  “I haven’t seen her. She should be home soon” informed Joe. “I hope so” said Adam.

“Why you say that?” asked Joe concern as he looks at one brother to the other. “Adam and I rode by the school and Amelia wasn’t there” said Hoss. “Maybe she went fishing with one of her friends” said Joe trying to be optimistic.

“When she does come home tell her I want to see her” said Adam he and Hoss turned around and walk back to the house and Joe goes back to his chore.

The sheriff Roy Coffee rides over to Joe. “Joe where are your brothers?” asked Roy as he mounts off his horse. “They’re in the house” said Joe uncertain why the sheriff was looking for them.

“Can you go get them for me?” asked Roy. Joe does what he is told in minutes the three of them walk over to Roy. “What’s going on Roy?” asked Adam. “I’m afraid I have bad news concerning Amelia” said Roy. The boys exchange concern glances.

“Is she alright?” asked Hoss. Roy shakes his head. “I’m afraid not Hoss. She fell off her horse at school and is at Doc Martin’s office” said Roy. “How bad is she hurt?” asked Adam.

“The Doc says she has a head injury but he didn’t say how severe it is” explained Roy he mounts back on his horse. “I thought you boys would like to know seeing how your Pa is away in Sacramento”.

“Thanks for notifying us” said Adam appreciatively. Roy nods and rides out of the yard. Adam then turns to Joe. “Joe stay here and finish your chores” said Adam. “But I wanna see her” protested Joe.

“I know you do but I don’t think we should all go see her at once at least not until we know more about her condition” said Adam.

Joe looks up at him with a sad look on his face. “Give her a kiss for me?” asked Joe. Adam hugs him and holds his tightly against his chest. “I will” said Adam. He and Hoss mounted up on their horses and rode out of the yard.

Once they were gone Joe began to pray that his sister would be alright.

The Aftermath

Adam and Hoss rode up to the front entrance of the Doctor’s office. They mount off their horses and walk inside. “Adam. Hoss I’m glad you got my message” said doc Martin walking over to them.

“How is she?” asked Hoss. “She has a mild concussion and possible amnesia. She’s unconscious now but she may experience vomiting, confusion and visual disturbances” explained the doctor.

“How serious is it?” asked Adam. “Not too serious. Her memory would come back in a day or next week I don’t know” said the doctor.

“Is there anything we can do?” asked Hoss. “I suggest that you boys help her remember certain things like who she is, her family, the Ponderosa, things like that but I caution you not to overload her with all of that at once or it will set her memory back further in the amnesia” said the doctor.

“When can we bring her home?” asked Adam. “When she wakes up” said the doctor. “Can we go see her?” asked Hoss.

“Of course” said the doctor leading them to an examining room where they found the little eight year old laying asleep on the bed.

The boys quietly walk over to her. She looked very angelic to them which cause them to smile.

Adam leans over her and kisses her on the head twice while Hoss takes her little hand in his. “Hey little sister everything is gonna be alright. Your big brothers are here and you’re gonna get better” said Hoss he kisses her hand before turning to Adam.

“I’m gonna go send Pa a telegram let him know what’s going on” said Hoss. “That’s a good idea. He would want to be here with her” said Adam focusing on his sister.

Hoss exits the room as Adam sits next to her. Like Hoss he also took his hand in hers.

“Hoss went to go send Pa a telegram. Don’t you fret about anything cause once Pa hears about you he’s gonna come straight home and be right by your side. Until then you’re gonna be stuck with us shortcake” said Adam with a smile.

“You’re gonna be well taken care of theirs Pa, Hoss, Me and Little Joe. You also have Hop Sing. Don’t you fret about whose gonna take care of ya cause we all will” said Adam with tears in his eyes.

It was hard for him to see his sister so still in a room that wasn’t hers. He would give anything to prevent his sister from getting hurt. In an away he felt partially guilty for his sister’s accident because he was put in charge to look after her and he felt that he had failed to protect her; to keep her safe from harm.

He gets up kisses her on the head and leaves the room. Joe was sitting on the sofa waiting for his brothers to come home. Adam walks in and saw him on the sofa. “Hey Joe” said Adam. Joe immediately gets up and walks over to him.

“How is she?” asked Joe worriedly. He couldn’t stop thinking about what his poor little sister was going through. He really wanted to see her and he really wanted to tell her that he was sorry.

Adam takes a deep breath dreading to tell Joe the bad news. He guides Joe back to the sofa. “Sit down Joe” said Adam in a calm but sad tone. Joe sits back down calmly and yet worried. He knew that he was about to hear some bad news.

Adam sits on the table across from him. “What did Doc Martin say?” asked Joe not sure if he wanted the question to be answered. “He said that Amelia has a mild concussion” said Adam slowly. “Is she gonna be alright?” asked Joe hopingly.

Adam looks down at his feet trying to reframe himself from crying. He knew this next part would be hard for Joe to hear more so than it would be for him to say it but he knew he had to.

Adam takes a slow and long deep breath before looking up at his brother’s concern glaze. Joe saw tears in his brother’s eyes something he has never seen before especially from Adam and he knew right then that the news was gonna be bad.

“What…is…it…Adam?” asked Joe scared. “There’s a possibility that she might have amnesia” Adam said finally. Joe gasped and bows his head down for a minute then looks at Adam with tear in his own eyes.

Adam gets up and sits beside Joe and puts his hand on his brother’s shoulder. “She’s gonna be alright Joe. Hoss is with her don’t worry everything’s gonna be alright” said Adam trying to reassured his brother and himself.

Joe turns to him. “I hope you’re right Adam” said Joe he rests his head on his brother’s shoulder.

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Author: Meg

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