He beat her in the trial, and now he’s trying to court her. Nelson & Cora. Chapter 6

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A VG Serial: Nelson & Cora

Chapter 6

Alberdeen, Kentucky, 1866

“I’m sorry, Thomas. I’m so sorry,” Cora said. She was almost in tears.

“Sorry for what? Losing happens. Part of being a lawyer.” Thomas said.

Thomas had known as soon as Judge Parker sat down that this case was a lost cause.

It was always Judge Parker, and he was a personal friend of Randall McGinnis.

The case turned out to be nothing more than a matter of pushing papers. Thomas knew he had lost before the trial began.

“I know,” Cora said. “I know that. I am sorry for embarrassing you while I was in the balcony. I am so sorry for that,” she said.

“Cora, it’s finished. You are being ridiculous, carrying on this way. You didn’t embarrass me or yourself,” Thomas said. He knew that would have been her next concern.

“I cannot believe he shushed me. Thomas, he shushed me and then laughed. We were in the courtroom for goodness sake,” Cora said.

“He’s a McGinnis. I don’t know what else to say,” Thomas replied.

“It’s not right. That behavior is not right. I don’t care who he is,” she said. Cora stuck out her hand and offered to carry Thomas’s papers.

“You may not care, but you would be one of the few, at least in this county,” Thomas said. He handed over the papers, and together he and Cora started down the path from the courthouse to his office.

Nelson and George emerged on the other side of the courthouse. George had given Nelson a severe reprimand, and even though Nelson was the oldest, he knew he was wrong for his actions. He let George have his say. He couldn’t help it though. Nelson liked the pretty girl in the balcony.

They were both glad that their father wasn’t there. They would never hear the end of it.

They walked along the path towards George’s apartment. It was dark outside now, and if Nelson hadn’t looked up at just the right moment, he would have run smack into Thomas and Cora.

“Excuse me, ma’am,” Nelson said. He tried to sidestep Cora. She stood in the middle of the path and stared at him.

‘No, sir, I will not,” Cora said before Thomas could stop her.

Nelson stood still and looked at her. “What?” he asked.

“I said, ‘no sir, I will not.’ I will not excuse your behavior towards me in the courtroom. I will not excuse your behavior now,” Cora said.

George took a deep breath. He sized up Thomas and thought that if he fought a little dirty, he could take Mr. Ross.

Nelson wasn’t thinking about fighting. Instead, he smiled at Cora.

“You’re right, ma’am. There is no excusing my behavior in the courtroom. No excuse, really, other than I thought you were pretty and only meant to tease you a little.”

Thomas and George both grimaced.

Cora did not hesitate, “However pretty you may think me to be, that does not give you the right to embarrass me.”

“Ma’am, you are correct again. And, I am truly sorry that I embarrassed and offended you. I hope you will find your way to forgive me,” Nelson said. He extended his hand.

Cora reached to shake it. “I appreciate your sincere apology. I hope that you will remember this when you encounter a lady in the future.”

Nelson turned her hand over before Cora realized what was happening. He kissed the back of her hand. Before she could jerk her hand free, Nelson said, “Yes, I will certainly remember you.”

She yanked her arm away from him, but not before she felt the warmth of his lips on her skin. “I think you will not remember,” she said.

Thomas and George continued to stand there, silently staring as the meeting unfolded.

“If you tell me your name, I will be better able to remember, and be better able to avoid offending you in the future,” Nelson said. He was smiling bigger by the second.

“My name is Cora, but I hope you will not see me again. That is the only way I know you will not offend me,” Cora said. She folded her arms across her chest, crushing Thomas’s papers in the process.

George finally put his arm around Nelson and shoved him away from Cora and further down the path towards the apartment. George looked over his shoulder and shouted to Thomas, “I’m sorry. I apologize for my brother. We didn’t mean any offense.”

Thomas linked his arm through Cora’s and moved her down the path.

“What in the world was that?” Thomas asked Cora as soon as they were out of earshot from the McGinnis brothers.

“I wasn’t going to let him embarrass me. That’s all,” Cora said.

“No, not that. What was the rest of it?” Thomas said. They entered the office and Cora handed him the crushed papers.

“The rest of what?” Cora asked.

“What do you think happened, Cora?” Thomas said.

“What do you mean, Thomas? I know what happened. I was there. He said ‘excuse me’ and I said that I would not excuse him. I told him that he embarrassed me. He apologized. That’s what happened,” Cora said. She sat in the chair opposite of Thomas.

He stared at his sister. He realized that Cora didn’t understand that she had just met a McGinnis and that this particular McGinnis seemed to be quite fond of her.

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