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"You aren't?" Jake looked at her in surprise.

"I used to be," admitted Abby, "but not anymore. He's not being as reckless with your safety as I had thought he was. Still, I wonder how the governor just happened to hear a rumor that you were considering legal action. That phone call from the governor this morning was very timely-- too timely, if you ask me." Abby took a suspicious sip of tea and noticed Dick standing in the doorway.

"I'm afraid you caught me," confessed Dick, entering the den. "Abby, I knew you probably weren't going to let Jake go through with this, and I couldn't blame you. So, I called an acquaintance who knows the governor, and told him what Jake was considering. Maybe I didn't have the right to do it, but it DID get fast results-- and I needed fast results. Abby," he said, "I want Jake to go to college, too. I don't want him to tie up several years of his life, fighting this battle in court."

"Sounds a little sneaky," Abby sighed, uneasily.

"Perhaps it was," admitted Dick, "but I hope I meant well."

"We know you're doing the best you can," consoled Jake, offering him a small plate with jam and buttered toast.

Abby kept quiet, choosing to eat her breakfast in silence. In her opinion, Dick had overstepped himself. But, she had to admit, with that one phone call, he had probably saved them from a drawn-out lawsuit.

The young woman had difficulty relaxing too much, for she had given her consent to push things further, if the governor needed more coaxing. Abby was sure that she would be grateful when all this was over and behind them.

Later that day, when Abby had told her family what Dick and Jake were up to, they gave her serious looks that very much mirrored her first reaction. Their church started praying for them, and John and Terry were extra vigilant about strangers who just happened to wander onto their private beach. Jake also kept a watchful eye on Abby, remembering that Dick had been concerned enough to send Sara away. He even ventured to again suggest that Abby stay somewhere else for awhile, but, gratefully, Abby wouldn't hear of it.

As the days passed and nothing bad happened, things began to settle down and Mrs. Doyle came back home. March faded into April, and spring finally came to Three Mile Bay. Now that the bay was no longer frozen, Abby eagerly took to the shore as soon as she could. The real fishing couldn't begin until June, when bass and pike came into season, but Abby was so overjoyed that she didn't care. With a hookless fly tethered to the end of her line, Abby sent the harmless feathered object out onto the water.

"I'm happy for you, Abby," grinned Jake, standing beside her while she fished.

"I'm in terrible form," she groaned, trying to execute a double haul and not doing it very gracefully. "I'm so out of practice! Usually, I dry cast in the snow over the winter just to keep from becoming rusty, but this year..."

"This year, you've been distracted?" Jake finished her thought with a knowing smile. "I'm sorry."

"I can't say it was a boring winter," she admitted. "But, this belly! It's ruining my backcast!"

"Poor Baby," teased Jake. "Another Murphy to spoil your fishing."

"I hope Dennis stops pushing me to get into another tournament soon," fretted Abby. "I'm going to need a lot of practice before I'm ready to compete. Dennis wants me to set more records so it will help the circulation of his magazine, but at the rate I'm going, I'll be doing good to not tarnish his reputation as a knowledgeable instructor."
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