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Thérèse A. Kraemer

Copyright Therese A. Kraemer 2018

Published by Spangaloo

Spangaloo Edition

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This novel is a work of fiction. Names, characters, events, incidents, and places are the product of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual persons, people, or events is purely coincidental

Cover Design: James Blanchette

Ebook Formatting : Alan Thriete


Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight


About the Author

Other Books

Chapter One

The Mystery Of Paradise

I often wondered when I was a tyke what Paradise would be like.

Is it on a planet or a shiny star way up in the heavens so far?

What does one do each and every day? Do you just lay around or do you play?

Do you have a soulmate for all eternity? And why is heaven such a mystery?

I have heard that it is a beautiful place where everyone’s equal no matter what their race.

Where animals and humans live in harmony and our souls are forever free.

There are colors and music unknown to man, a promise land given to us by God’s very hand.

I’m grown now but I still think about Paradise, but to get there one must pay the price.

Silver and gold can’t buy your way into heaven’s gate; you must love your neighbor that’s whatit takes.

Give clothes to the needy feed the poor, when a stranger needs help open your door.

It’s the love you give in life that’ll earn you your way into God’s special garden on your last day.

Chicago, 1824

Mary Holdrege was ninety years old and on her deathbed. Her son held her hand until she took her last breath. Now, it is said that when you die your family would be waiting for you, with Saint Peter, at the Pearly Gate of heaven. But, what greeted Mary was a stranger to her. Apparently, she was not a stranger to the man.

“Hello Mary, I am here to greet you.”

She was frightened, but that was expected, it’s not something one experiences over and over; at least that what she thought. She swallowed and rasped, “Hello, sir.”

“Please, call me Peter.”

She nodded not knowing what to say or expect.

“Did you have a happy life?” he asked.

She wasn’t sure how to answer that. She did know that one does not lie if one wanted to go to heaven, so she said honestly, “No, I did not.”

Pete frowned. “I am sorry to hear that. What was wrong with your existence? You came from a wealth family; had everything a girl could ask for.”

“Yes,” she sighed, “but the one thing I never got was a true love. Oh, at first the man I married was kind and gentle but then he cheated on me and I discovered he just married me for my money.”

Peter shook his head, “I am sorry to hear that. But…” and it was a long pause before he said, “The Almighty wants everyone to enter Paradise happy so you will get another chance to find true love.”

New York, 1914

Alida Spence was dying but she felt relieved to leave this earth because she had a miserable eighty years of life. Her husband was a drunk and beat her and thankfully they were childless so leaving was easy. She closed her eyes and felt herself float through, what appeared to be a long tunnel with a shining light at the end.

“Hello Alida, we meet again.”

She blinked, confused, and rasped. “What do you mean?”

He smiled, “Oh, you’ve been here before but of course you do not have any memory of it. But by that as it may, how was your life?”

Still in the arms of confusion she thought the question strange but she answered honestly. “Sir, it sucked.”

He blanched and murmured, “My name is Peter. And, um…I am truly sorry to hear that again.”

“A-again?” she sputtered.

He did not explain and said, “Well, the Almighty gives souls many chances to enter heaven happy so you will be sent back until you find happiness.”

Alida sighed, “All I want is a love that’s never ending, a soul mate. Is that too much to ask for sir?”

“Peter, please. And no it is not.”

Renton Cliffs, eight miles from Bainbridge Island, which is connected by ferry to Seattle, Washington. Renton Cliffs’ population is six thousand and three hundred and one.

“Oh darling, isn’t she beautiful,” sighed Nina holding her baby girl for the first time. She and her husband had waited over ten years before she finally conceived. She had suffered a long and panful labor but holding her child her eyes misted, forgetting the agony because she felt as if she were holding an angle in her arms. This baby is special; she will have a happy and cherished life. This Nina promised herself and she sealed her promise with a kiss on its cherub cheek.

“What shall we call her?” she asked her husband, Zane. They never asked the doctor for the baby’s sex; they wanted it to be whatever God decided.

“I’d like to name her Zayna, a combination of both our names, honey. We made her together and we will love her until we die.” He kissed Nina. “I love you my sweet, we are truly blessed.”

Twenty-four years later.

“Morning mother and dad,” Zayna Landau chirped excitedly kissing her mother’s and father’s cheek. “Happy thirty five years of happiness.”

“Thank you dear,” they answered in unison.

Zayna sat down for breakfast and took a sip of her orange juice. “Now remember you two, I am treating you both for dinner at your favorite restaurant tonight.”

Her mother groaned and murmured, “Please, no surprises,” she ordered firmly. “You know how I hate surprises.”

“Zayna shrugged, “Yes mother, you have reminded me umpteen times.”

“Listen to your mother,” mumbled her father chewing on a piece of bacon.”

Zayna rolled her eyes. She loved her parents deeply and they have given her anything she wanted. But, she didn’t ask for much. She was smart and finished college with a business degree. With her marketing knowledge, she was ready to start her own bakery business. And, her favorite thing she loved to do since she first helped her mother bake her own birthday cake was to bake.

She admired them; after all these years they were still very much in love. She prayed nightly to find a love like the one they shared.

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