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Authors: Gloria Graham

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A Memory Unchained

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A

Memory

Unchained

Also by Gloria Graham

Gateway to the Jungle

Cover

by

Kelsy Benedict

A

Memory

Unchained

Gloria Graham

ELDERBERRY PRESS, INC.

OAKLAND

Copyright © 2007 Gloria Graham

All rights reserved. No part of this publication, except for brief excerpts for purpose of review, may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or trans-mitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise without the prior written permission of the publisher.

This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance of the characters to persons living or dead is purely coincidental.

Cover art by Kelsy Benedict

ELDERBERRY PRESS, INC.

1393 Old Homestead Drive, Second floor

Oakland, Oregon 97462—9506.

E MAIL: [email protected] com

TEL/FAX: 541. 459. 6043

www. elderberrypress. com

RED ANVIL books are available from your favorite bookstore, amazon. com, or from our 24 hour order line: 1. 800. 431. 1579

Library of Congress Control Number: 2006939166

Publisher’s Catalog—in—Publication Data

A Memory Unchained / Gloria Graham

ISBN-13: 978-1-932762-74-7

ISBN-10: 1932762744

1. Romance—Fiction.

2. Christian—Fiction.

3. Christian Romance—Fiction.

4. Fashion Industry—Fiction.

5. Fashion—Fiction.

I. Title

This book was written, printed and bound in the United States of America.

To my Husband, Bob and all my girls

who inspired and encouraged this book.

Special Thanks To:

Sally Berryman, my Friend and Marketing Mgr.

Vicki Benedict—Editing

chapter one

The delicate old lady with snow white hair

sitting next to Pamela counting her prayer beads never

missed a beat as the Jumbo Jet broke ground and darted

upward. “Oh my,” she gasped. Her wrinkled face grimaced

with fear. Pamela reached across the seat and patted the

old woman’s shaking hand. “First flight?” she asked, trying to show a great deal of calm herself. The old lady nodded, never skipping a count on her beads!

“Everything will be just fine, try to relax a little.” Pamela’s friendly smile captivated everyone she came into contact with and the shaking little old woman was no exception.

She returned her smile a little reluctantly as she asked in her broken English, “Are you Catholic Mon Ami?”

Pamela smiled realizing the old lady was very much a

Frenchman. “Baptist,” she answered shaking her head, and

smiling again as she said, “Same God.” With that the old

lady nodded in agreement and continued her prayers.

Pamela sat quietly looking out the window deep in

8 __________________Gloria Graham

thought, as New York passed under her and quickly only

blue sky was visible.

“Are you visiting someone in my Parie?” the old lady

spoke. Pamela turned in her seat to answer her question.

“Not exactly,” she said. “I’m traveling on business. I

am a dress designer and I am going to Paris for the new

fashion showings.” Pamela shivered as she uttered those

words, it was a dream come true.

The Captain’s reassuring voice came over the intercom.

They were at altitude and could unbuckle the seatbelts and move about the cabin. Pamela thought how wonderful it

was to hear him.

Pamela adjusted her seat back and gave a sigh of relief.

The magazine in the pocket in front of her had a beauti-

ful colored picture of the Eiffel Tower on its cover. She smiled as she gently touched the cover. “I’m really on my way and I will see you soon,” she said to herself staring at the picture.

As she closed her eyes she remembered the note her

daughter Jill had tucked into her pocket with instructions not to read until she was airborne. She wasted no time in opening it.

Inside the note read, “I love you Mom, have a wonder

time. Watch those fabulous Frenchmen!” She added, “Ha

Ha. You deserve this trip! Love, Jill”

Leaving Jill was definitely the hard part of the trip. But she was a grown woman now and Pamela hated to admit

that. She still liked to think of her as her “little girl.” Jill often had to remind her that she had her own job, her

own apartment and doing quite well at college. It hadn’t

been long that Jill left for College and the apron strings A Memory Unchained___________ 9

had to be broken.

Pamela thought of her daughter and the wonderful

friendship they had developed since that time. Jill was a young lady with a definite mind of her own. She recalled

their conversation just two days before. “Who will keep you in line in Paris Mom if I’m not with you? I think I should go as your chaperone,” she teased. It was a natural thing for Jill to worry about her Mother. She hated her living

alone and never doing anything. She knew her Mother

was never going to get over the death of her Dad until she began socializing and meeting people again. That’s why

this trip to Paris was so important to Jill. This was going to be her Mom’s “coming out again” trip!

“I can’t believe you are actually going to Paris. Maybe

you’ll meet some handsome, exciting Frenchman who will

sweep you off your feet!” Jill was only half teasing. It was really her dream for her Mom.

“Is that all you ever think about young lady?” Pamela

scolded her. She too was only half teasing. Jill was not afraid to tell her Mother her feelings. Pamela had taught her to always be truthful. Jill smiled at her Mother sweetly and replied, “You need to start living again Mom!”

Pamela closed her eyes as the quiet hum of the jet en-

gines filled the air. It was hard to swallow the lump that had developed in her throat as she thought about leaving

Jill behind.

“It’s only a month, thirty days, get a hold of yourself,”

Pamela thought to herself. It was her “reality” check on

herself. She learned that lesson a long time ago from a very famous pastor who reminded her that Jesus suffers when

we suffer. He feels our hurts; he knows our thoughts – so 10 __________________Gloria Graham

talk to him. That was how she had survived this past year without her beloved husband. God came alongside and

filled her heart when it was in such pain. Pamela breathed deep and thought, “God is good.” She glanced at the little old lady next to her who seemed to be a little more relaxed.

“That’s good,” she smiled.

Pamela jumped as the “fasten your seatbelt” sign went

on and the announcement came over the speaker. She felt

a few bumps and looked out the window to see a very

cloudy sky. Staring out the window Pamela began think-

ing of how it all happened that she was even on the plane, heading for Paris.

It had only been a few weeks since her boss, J.P. Orland

had surprised her with the news of the Paris trip. There had been some very catty remarks going around the office as to why she had been chosen to take this trip. She overheard

one of the girls at the copy machine saying, “She’s sleeping with J.P., that’s how she got the trip.” That remark hurt her deeply. She thought she had always tried to present

herself in a better light than that!

J.P. was so caught up in his business he wouldn’t give

her a second look. She had almost decided to ignore the

remark but decided to face it head on. She prayed as she

decided just how to approach Sally in a Christian way.

This took a lot of prayer on Pamela’s part, she had to get over how she really felt, mad.

The office was the open style with at least 50 desks

placed around the room. There was an obvious silence

that fell over the room as Pamela walked around Sally’s

desk and placed her hand on her shoulder. Sally winced

as if she were expecting to be hit.

A Memory Unchained___________ 11

“Can we go somewhere and talk?” Pamela said in a

quiet tone. “I need to clarify something for you and I don’t want to do it out here in front of everyone.” She smiled

at Sally.

Sally looked pale but agreed to go with Pamela to the

ladies lounge. Pamela could see the pain Sally was going

through. She knew what it was all about, that was obvious.

It would be so easy to really light in on her, put her in her place, show her who’s boss, but Pamela knew in her heart

that would not be right, not the Christian way, not a way she could show she was a Christian.

“Sally,” she said calmly, “I’m so happy to be going to

Paris to represent Mr. Orland in this years fashion designs, I know you’re happy for me.” Sally swallowed hard.

Pamela continued, “I don’t know if you know it or not

but this was a joyous surprise for me since I hardly know Mr. Orland personally. But I know you know all that. I

know how hard it is to keep a secret around here,” she

laughed.

Sally laughed a little shyly, dropping her head.

“I would love to bring you something back from Paris,

do you like perfume?” she asked.

Sally sputtered as she said, “That would be real nice of

you, Miss Pamela.”

“It would be my pleasure, perfume it is. I do hope you

will have a wonderful day today, there’s lots to do before I am ready to go. I really appreciate all you do for Orlands and for me especially!”

Pamela leaned close to Sally and whispered in her ear,

“The tongue can be a very wicked thing, if not used prop-

erly. I really try to remember that.” She smiled at Sally.

12 __________________Gloria Graham

“Yes Ma’am, I will remember that too.” She answered

sheepishly.

Pamela patted her gently on the shoulder and said, “I

will see you when I return.”

Sally was obviously impressed with the way Pamela

had taken care of the situation. Tears filled her eyes as she thanked Pamela for understanding.

As Pamela turned and walked away she couldn’t help

wonder why J.P. had picked her for this trip. She did have seniority and she was the head of the Fashion Department

at Orlands, but J.P. definitely had his favorites and she never saw herself as one of those girls.

Pamela had looked at the ticket she held in her hand

that made her trip a reality. She didn’t know why but she was going to the fashion capital of the world, Paris!

Pamela had a few second thoughts as she listened to

J.P.’s blistering voice. “Get over there – get the scoop on the fashions for next season! Get us some new ideas! New

ideas, that’s what we need,” he spit out the orders never looking around to face her.

Pamela thought to herself, “He wouldn’t recognize me

if I ran right into him in the hallway.” She wanted to ask him to turn around but she thought better of it! After all, he was the boss.

She wondered as she began gathering up the things

she needed to take with her on the plane how she would

ever change J.P.’s conservative ways. She had tried before during this past year as head Fashion Coordinator for Orlands Department Store Chain but it hadn’t worked. He

just couldn’t get “modern” and that was really hurting his business. He always laid her ideas aside and took the least A Memory Unchained___________ 13

line of resistance, staying with designs he was absolutely sure would sell. Now he wanted her to go to Paris and get the “scoop” as he called it. Would he be open to the new

ideas she would bring home? She wondered.

The clouds had disappeared and beautiful blue sky was

all you could see out the window of the plane. She glanced again at the in-flight magazine and the picture of the Eiffel Tower on the front.

“Are you alright Mon Ami?” The little French lady had

been watching Pamela deep in thought. She added quickly,

“You are so elegant, your clothes, so lovely. Paris should be honored to have such a guest as you.”

Pamela smiled as the old lady added, “I have never met

a celebrity before.”

“Just a very lucky lady,” Pamela answered. She reached

over to squeeze the woman’s wrinkled hand that still

clutched the prayer beads tightly in them. Pamela had

a special feeling for the old lady. It struck her as strange since she just met her. The old lady had a way of making

Pamela feel special and a bit important. She had not had

that feeling in a long time. Jill always tried, but no one took the place of her late husband.

Tom had a way of doing just that, making her feel

special all those twenty-two years. Now, without him so

much was missing. She paused and memories began to

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