"When are we going back home momma?" Megan slipped Dennis' backpack on his back and pulled
her suitcases from the trunk of the car. She was surprised her son hadn't asked the question sooner.
"You know we can't go back, Dennis. This area is nice. Once I get a job, we'll get a house of our
own with a big backyard and maybe even a dog."
"I liked it better back home," he pouted crossing his small arms and glaring at her.
Megan bent to kiss her son's disheveled head as she directed him towards the porch. "I'm sure you'll
like it here just as much as you liked it back in Kansas. Nothing will be too much different."
Dennis opened the door to the house. "Wow, this place is big!"
Megan smiled at the pure joy in his voice. Of course the house was bigger than their two bedroom
apartment. "Wait until you see the upstairs." She told him.
He grinned and clapped his hands. "There's an upstairs?"
Megan let her suitcases hit the floor; she'd bring them up later.
"Come on, let me show you." Taking her son's hand she made her way through the living room and
to the stairwell, racing him to the top. When Dennis was done giggling uncontrollably she grabbed
his hand again and took him from room to room.
"Wait momma, there's another staircase." Without warning Dennis sprinted up the stairs to the third
and final floor. Rolling her eyes Megan ran up after him, not wanting him to get into any trouble.
The master bedroom was littered with dirty blue jeans and sweat streaked tee shirts. A saddle lay
on a wooden rack in one corner of the room gathering dust, the bed was unmade and the sheets lay
in a tangle on the floor. Unlike all the other rooms that were untouched, clean, and neat, the master
bedroom was a wreck. Megan found Dennis sitting at the room's bay window seat, looking out of the
grime covered window to the layout of the ranch below.
"Dennis, we shouldn't be up here. From now on this room is off limits, understood?" Dennis took his
face and pressed it to the glass, smearing the dirt with his nose and hands.
"Awe momma, you gotta see this." Megan glanced out the window—there was a spectacular view,
better then she remembered—then grabbed Dennis by the back of his shirt and dragged him out of
"Off limits, do you understand?" Dennis nodded, jumping down the stairs one by one and grinning
each time the impact echoed throughout the second floor.
"Which room do you want?"
Thinking for a second Dennis finally decided on a small bedroom that looked out towards the
stables. The view was nothing compared to that of the master bedroom. "The blue one with the big
fish on the wall."
"Go put your backpack on the bed. Momma's going to take the green room down the hall beside the
bathroom." Dennis nodded and ran off towards his new bedroom.