TITLE: Daisy Parker, Almost the Daughter of Calamity Jane
GENRE: Middle Grade Historical Fiction
I was hiding in the hay loft when I heard her ride up. If I pressed my eye right up against the crack between the planks I could see a figure on horseback. I squinted at her, she was someone familiar.
Mrs. Coffey had long ago stopped calling me. Before breakfast she’d caught her husband trying to pull me to him in the kitchen. As soon as he let go I ran to avoid the slaps sure to come my way and not his. I’d planned how I’d bite and kick anyone who tried to drag me down. I’d been six months with the Coffey’s since my mother’s death. I’d been too stunned at first, but I’d had enough.
The sound of arguing came from over near the house.
And as the woman strode closer I could make out the words. “What do you mean you don’t know where she is! She’s in your care ain’t she? What cause you give her to hide anyway?
“Daisy, can you hear me? It’s Jane!”
Jane, Calamity Jane, an old friend of my mother’s. I didn’t know then how their paths ever crossed. My shy, worked-to-death mother and this heroine of the Old West, known for helping in any calamity or causing one wherever she went.
I came down that rickety ladder so fast I missed the last couple rungs and fell into Jane’s arms.
She set me on my feet. “Daisy, I just heard about your Ma and I came to see if you was all right.”