Jack woke up to the smell of bacon and eggs. His favorite smell to wake up too. Yawning he slipped out of bed, leaving Rose to sleep a little longer. It was a long night for her and she was exhausted. A little more rest would do her good. He went downstairs to find Mrs. Gladys in front of the stove.
"Oh good morning Jack. Its nice to see you up so early," Mrs. Gladys smiled. "Rose still sleeping?"
"Yes mam. It was a long night for her, not
to mention all the going ons of the past week or so. She needs
her rest," Jack smiled. "Uh
you know of anyone whos hiring now a days? I want to look
"Try the Bridgemonts. They have that factory up and running now. Many of the young men who dont work the land work there. Tell them Mrs. Gladys sent you."
"When should I go?" Jack asked taking a seat.
"Well theyll be opening up in another hour I say around ten should be good."
Jack smiled and nodded.
"You know Jack, theres no need for you to get a job right away. You and Rose are welcomed to stay here for free. Its the least I could do for your poor mother."
"Oh no Mrs. Gladys. I couldnt do that. Besides Id like to get a apartment for Rose and myself someday so we can start our family," Jack smiled. "But thanks anyway."
"Jack?" Rose appeared in the doorway.
"Morning my Rosepetal," Jack got up and kissed her.
"Why didnt you wake me?" Rose looked at her husband questioningly.
"I thought you might like the extra
rest," Jack kissed her forehead. "Im going job
hunting today. How would you like to go visit Cillie while
"Oh Jack she could stay here," Gladys volunteered. "Theres no need to bother Cillie Dawson."
"Im sure it wouldnt be a bother. Cillie wants Rose to come visit anyway," Jack shrugged.
"I think going to visit with Cillie is a grand idea but after breakfast. Im starved," Rose sat at the table ready to eat. Jack laughed at his wifes eagerness for breakfast.
"Take your time Rosie. Theres no hurry," Jack patted her shoulder.
"Jack, you remember Peter Castle dont you?" Gladys asked.
"You mean Big Pete? Sure. He was one of the towns bullies," Jack nodded.
"Well hes one of the foremen down at the factory. Im sure if you talk to him hell give you a position," Gladys smiled.
"Great," Jack groaned. "It was bad enough having to deal with the guy five years ago. Now I have to ask him for a job?"
"Big Pete?" Rose looked up. "Did he give you a hard time Jack?"
"Well yeah. Kind of. But hey I handled worst than him in the recent past. Im sure I can handle him now," Jack ran a hand through his hair. "I guess I should get a haircut while Im at it."
"That may help," Gladys nodded. "Factory work is hot and sweaty. All that long hair of yours will not help none. Especially now that summer will be here soon."
"Whos the local barber?" Jack asked, pouring himself some orange juice."
"The same man who cut your fathers hair. Frank Benson. Hell be happy to cut yours for you."
"Ok," Jack nodded. "Ill check him out. Ready Rose?"
Rose smiled and stood. "Sure. Lets go. Ill see you later tonight Gladys."
"Have a good day you two," Mrs. Gladys waved as Rose and Jack started down the dirt road.
Cillie Dawson was in the midst of finishing up the breakfast dishes when Jack and Rose arrive. She turns around and hugs both Jack and Rose.
"Im so happy you two came today. George is out making deliveries right now and wont be back until this evening. But we can all set and talk," Cillie led them to the couch in the setting room.
"Thats ok Cillie. Im not staying long. Im going to go job searching. But I was wondering if Rose could hang with you today while Im out."
"Thatll be great. Rose and I can set and talk, go to the market. Maybe I can even give her some cooking lessons for when you two get a place of your own."
"That sounds like fun," Rose smiled.
"Ok. Ill be back later. Have fun sweetie," Jack kissed her good-bye before walking out the door.
"Jack seems like a wonderful husband," Cillie smiled.
"He is. Hes everything I could have asked for. George seems wonderful too."
"Oh he is. I love him so much. In fact, dont tell anyone because its a surprise. But in eight months, George and I will be parents!"
"What!" Roses eyes widened then she hugged her cousin in law. "Oh Cillie thats marvelous news. George will be thrilled."
"I hope so. We were planning to wait another year, but I guess these things happen."
"I cant wait until Jack and I start, but I think were going to wait until we get a place of our own."
"Well the offer to move here is still open. Whenever you two decide you need more room, just say the word," Cillie nodded.
"You and George have both been so kind to
me. I dont know how to thank you."
"Hey youre family. Theres no need to thank us. Now come on. Lets go to the market and Ill show you the best buys. This is one of the most important jobs of the housewife. The shopping and cooking of the food," Cillie grabbed her sweater.
After stopping to get his hair trimmed, Jack walked down to the factory and asked for an application. Factory work wasnt something he really wanted to do, but itll pay the rent and help him take care of Rose. He wondered how she was faring over at Cillies. This was their first time being apart since leaving the Carpathia and he missed her like crazy. He didnt know how he was going to deal with being away from her eight hours a day when he got the job.
"Hey Pete! We need you to sign some papers over here!" The man at the desk hollered. Jack turned around to see a tall hefty man with black hair and glowering brown eyes approach the desk. He instantly recognized the person that had made the last couple of years of his life in Chippewa Falls miserable. He had not changed a bit.
"Hey Pete, you remember Jack Dawson dont you?" The man at the desk asked.
"That scrawny kid I loved to beat up on? Sure! Whatever happened to him anyway? I havent seen hide nor hair of him in the past five years!" Pete nodded.
"Why dont you turn around and ask him? Hes setting right there filling out a application," The man laughed.
Pete turned around and saw a tall blond man with blue eyes setting at the table for applicants, busily filling out the application. At first he didnt recognize him. The Jack Dawson he knew was a skinny as a rail kid, no manlyness about him. But this man setting at the desk was of slight build but he had muscles and something about his face spoke of manlyness and experience. This couldnt be Jack Dawson. But looking closer he saw a hint of the boy he once been and knew instantly that it was.
"I cant believe you came back to town," Pete stood in front of the man with his arms folded. "After five long years."
Jack looked up and forced a smile. "Hey Big Pete Castle. It has been a long time."
"And you look awfully different. You grew up Jack."
"Grew up and married," Jack stuck out a hand. "Its good to see you again. Miss. Gladys said that you were a foreman here."
"Yep. Moved up the ladder quick," Pete grinned, "Accepting Jacks hand, impressed with the strong handshake. "So youre applying for a job here huh?"
"Yeah. I have a wife to support now, I have no choice but to settle down for now," Jack shrugged, knowing Rose would kill him for saying that, but he didnt want to say that both him and Rose needed to get their bearings again after their trumatic experience.
"Well I hope Ill see ya around. Itll be like old times," Pete laughed, before turning to return to his station.
"Youve been missed around here Jack," The man at the desk nodded. "Even old Pete missed you."
"Yeah right," Jack laughed. "Picking on me maybe. But thats the past. And Im done here. Thanks Joe."
"No prob. Im sure youll get the job. We sure do need the help around here," Joe nodded, watching Jack leave.
Rose and Cillie have just taken a pie out of the oven when Jack returned. Roses eyes lit up and she was soon in his arms. She didnt know that it was possible to miss someone as much as she had missed Jack.
"Ive missed you so much," Rose clung to him.
"I missed you too sweetie. Whats going on in here?" Jack asked, pulling away from Rose and walked into the kitchen.
"Rose and I made a pie and a cake and a roast with vegetables. You want to taste?" Cillie asked. "I just instructed her, she did everything else on her own."
"Uh ok," Jack nodded. "Im sure its delicious."
"Ill fix you a plate," Rose kissed his cheek. "How did the job search go?"
"It was ok. I ran into Peter Castle. I think he was surprised to see I was no longer that scrawny kid he picked on all those years ago," Jack laughed. "How do you like my hair cut?"
"What cut?" Rose furrowed her brow and smiled when she saw that his hair was a couple of inches shorter. "I like it."
"So did you two have fun today?" Jack sat at the table as Rose sat his plate in front of him.
"Yes. We went shopping. We cooked, we cleaned "
"Rose is the only person I know who likes all of this," Cillie laughed.
"Honey! Im home!" George hollered.
"Youre early," Cillie kissed her husband in greeting.
"Slow day. So they sent me home. Hey Jack!" George greeted his cousin who was busy sampling his wifes cooking. Jack just waved in greeting.
"Come join Jack. This is Roses first venture into cooking. I think she did pretty good," Cillie grinned, setting her husband from across the desk who looked surprised.
"Rose cooked all of this?" George asked, surprised.
"Yes. Ill fix you a plate," Cillie went to the cabinet to take out a plate.
"She did pretty good," Jack nodded, proud of his wifes accomplishment.
"What did you do all day Jack?" George wondered.
"I went in search of a job. I think theyre going to hire me at the factory," Jack shrugged. "Not my ideal of fun, but itd put money in our pockets for a while."
George nodded as he took a bite of roast. His eyes widen in pleasure. "Rose this is delicious. Are you sure you never done this before?"
"Positive," Rose smiled.
Two hours later Jack and Rose are walking back to the boarding house hand in hand. Both exhausted from their busy day. Rose sighed happily, knowing that things were only going to get better from here.
"Happy love?" Jack asked, pulling her closer to him.
"Extremely. You are the most wonderful man Ive ever known Jack. I love you."
"I love you too," Jack kissed the top of her head. "I promise Rose someday we will head out to Santa Monica and well do everything weve talked about. You do understand why were not doing it now dont you?"
"Of course. Both of us need time to deal with what happened aboard Titanic. Its not going to leave us over night. But as soon as we both feel ready, well head out towards our dream. I promise."
Rose smiled and sighed. "Jack as long as Im with you Im happy. And I do trust you. I know well head to Santa Monica. Maybe not today, but someday and thats good enough for me. I love you Jack."
"I love you too Rose," He glanced down at his wife and together they continue on home, their thoughts on nothing but each other.