Blissfully Undone(3)

By: Red Phoenix

“Better?” he asked.

“Much,” Jenny said drowsily, falling asleep soon after. The blizzard continued to swirl around the little cabin, but she survived the night in relative comfort.

Dan was the first to stir the next morning. “I don’t want to do this.”

“Do what?” she asked groggily.

“Get out of this warm bed.”

Jenny laughed. “I don’t blame you.”

“Yeah, but unless I get the firewood, we’ll have to stay here all day.”

“I’ll cheer you on from the bed.”

“That’s big of you,” he grumbled good-naturedly just before making the mad dash. Jenny heard him zip up his coat and stomp his boots several times. Then she heard the creak of the door and a loud, “Oh shit!”

“What? What’s wrong?”

“This is bad.”

Curiosity made her brave the cold. Jenny gasped when she saw the doorway completely blocked by snow, from top to bottom. “What the heck?”

“Yeah, we’re, like, literally snowed in.”

“What are we going to do?” she asked, trying to keep calm as she shivered in the frigid air. The thought of being snowed in completely freaked her out. With no electricity and no way to leave, she wasn’t sure how they would survive the cold.

He confirmed her fears when he said, “I have to get that firewood, Jenny. We’re not going to survive without it.” Dan grabbed a pot and scooped out a pan full of snow. She followed him as he walked to the bathroom and tossed it in the tub. Jenny quickly put on her coat, shoes, and gloves and grabbed another pot. The two began the arduous task of digging out. The positive in helping Dan was that Jenny got exceedingly warm working so hard.

Once they broke through the top layer of the snow, they were hit with blowing winds. The blizzard was still raging on. It took hours before they were able to dig their way to the woodpile. When Jenny hit the first log, she grabbed onto Dan, jumping up and down enthusiastically. “I found it! We’re saved!”

He hugged her and laughed with relief. “I never thought we would see that damn wood.” After digging out the woodpile, she helped him carry the logs into the cabin. The wood completely lined one wall. Lucky for them, there was a healthy supply. “I bet this will last at least a week,” Dan assured her.

By the time they finished stacking the last of it, both were starving. Jenny got out the donuts, precooked bacon and chocolate milk, grateful that they had chosen food that didn’t need preparation. After he got a fire going, she took a cast-iron pot and filled it with snow. “Coffee soon,” she announced, putting it on the edge of the fire.

“Great. By the way, thanks for all the help.”

“Of course.”

“Kelly would have sat on the sidelines and told me I was taking too long.”

Jenny chuckled. “Yeah, she probably would have. Nice thing about working together is that we get to drink hot coffee sooner.”

“Yep, can’t wait.” Dan put his hands next to the fire, rubbing them together vigorously.

As she stared into the flames, she started thinking about Ryan and fear gripped her heart. “You don’t think they are stuck out there, do you?” Tears threatened to run down her cheeks when she thought of Ryan freezing in his car.

Dan walked over and put his arm around her. “No. I’m confident both are fine. Thankfully, we have enough supplies to wait out the storm. There’s no need to worry, Jenny. Trust me.”

She hesitantly pressed her head on his chest. For just a moment, she allowed herself to receive comfort in Dan’s embrace. Then Jenny grabbed a hot pad and poured the boiling water into two cups, stirring in the instant coffee. “Here you go, made fresh by me.”

“Nice.” He cupped the mug in his hands. “Nothing like a cup of hot coffee.”

“Agreed.” Jenny took a sip and cried out. “Hot! Too hot!”

Dan got up and opened the door. He came back with a handful of snow. He broke it in half, plopping one in her cup and handing her the other. “For your tongue.”

Jenny took it gratefully, stuffing the icy snow into her burning mouth. “Aww… bewwer,” she mumbled.

They spent the afternoon chatting about random stuff, trying to pass the time. After a few games of poker using pretzel sticks as money, Jenny started a more personal conversation. “So, when are you and Kelly planning on tying the knot?”

“Not sure it’ll ever happen.”

“Why not?” she asked, taken aback by his answer. She had naturally assumed the two of them would get married.

“I talked about marriage once but Kelly told me it wasn’t her thing. She doesn’t want to ruin what we have going. I’ve decided it’s for the best.”

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