Lucy rubbed her hands together nervously. She paced between the huge stone fireplace in the great room at Winterlodge, her family’s rustic hotel on the shores of Flathead Lake and the front window. Outside, the snow was swirling and falling, coating the driveway, trees and everything else in its path in winter white.
“You’re going to wear a hole in the floor if you don’t quit that pacing,” Aunt Dotty said as she carried a tray of small pottery oil lamps to the peeled log table that sat behind the leather sofa in the middle of the room.
“We’ll be lucky if we still have power by dinner time,” she added as she arranged a group of four lamps down the center of the table, and then picked up her tray, carrying it to the end table that sat between two overstuffed side chairs.
“You could keep your nerves busy working on your quilt block,” Aunt Lucille suggested. Each Christmas Lucy, her Grandmother Winter and Aunt Lucille would make quilt blocks inspired by the season’s activities. They each kept their blocks secret from each other, then spent the week between Christmas and New Year’s trying to pull them together into a cohesive quilt. Aunt Dotty’s job was to add embellishment of some sort.
Lucy ignored her aunt and looked out again. She could just make out a dark Suburban rounding the turn in the long driveway that led to the main lodge building. Lucy’s fiancé Ryan had left five hours ago for a trip to the Kalispell airport that should have taken no more than two and a half in normal weather conditions; but these were not normal conditions.
“See,” Aunt Dotty said, coming to the window to look for her self. “He’s back safe and sound and by the looks of it, he’s got a full load of guests.”