Joss’s littlest child, a girl with her father’s curly hair, came bounding down the path toward them. Papa, is Uncle Caleb really a damn Yankee? she chirped. Joss didn’t so much as glance in Caleb’s direction. Yes, Ellen, he said gently. He’s the damnedest Yankee I ever saw. Caleb smiled. You wouldn’t have Susannah and all these beautiful kids if I’d done what you told me to do that day, he pointed out. You’d be nothing but a pile of bones moldering in the brush somewhere. Joss glowered at him. I guess that’s so, he conceded. But don’t get the idea things are settled between us, little brother, because they aren’t. I’m still going to beat the living tar out of you the day your arm comes out of that sling. This was the old Joss, the Joss whom Caleb remembered and loved. Don’t be too confident, big brother, he replied. Just in case you haven’t noticed, I’m all grown up. Lily
― Linda Lael Miller,
Lily and the Major
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