North Bloomfield, California
April 23, 1874
It took some doing, but I got my Ian over fer supper tonite. He had all these excuses bottled up in him, but none of them put me off. Felt real good to have him sitting across the table from me - like he used to when he was little. Don't ya miss having Maggie and her kids around?
Fer a while, all he could talk about was my foot. Kept asking if it was healing all right. I had to coax a bit, but I got him talking about how he was doing. I got him to talk about his health, and iffen he was lonely. But when I asked about Alistair, Ian just frowned at me and ranted on and on about being abandoned when he needed him. His face always gits that real funny look when I talk about Alistair. His mouth turns straight as a line and his eyes git real hard.
He don't like to believe thet God kin give free will and allow bad things to happen. 'Member how we were talking about thet afore ya left? He likes to know thet God won't force him to trust his saving grace, but he don't git how God couldn't have forced his pa to stay. He's real confused. Sometimes I wonder where my little Ian went.
He let me hug him before he trudged back over to thet combination of a clinic and a house he calls "home." Ian stood stiff in my arms, but after a while, he loosened up and hugged me back. Thet boy is so bitter he makes hisself lonely. I think he liked being hugged. I wish his ma were here. He needs her real bad.
I cain't wait till ya git yerself back here. I miss ya, Charlie. So ya better finish up whatever ya got to finish and come on home to me. Besides, Ian needs ya too. Between you and Rory, thet boy always has a reason to keep going. But now thet Rory's gone, he needs ya.
All my love,