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Excerpt of A Place Of Peace by Amy Clipston


Kauffman Family Bakery #3
December 2010
On Sale: December 14, 2010
Featuring: Timothy Kauffman; Miriam Lapp
336 pages
ISBN: 0310319951
EAN: 9780310319955
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Inspirational Amish

Also by Amy Clipston:

Something Old, Something New, January 2023
On the Way to Christmas, October 2022
Paperback / e-Book
The Heart of Splendid Lake, July 2022
Mass Market Paperback / e-Book
The View from Coral Cove, May 2022
Paperback / e-Book
An Amish Picnic, March 2020
Paperback / e-Book
The Bake Shop, November 2019
Hardcover / e-Book
An Amish Christmas Bakery, October 2019
Paperback / e-Book
A Welcome at Our Door, May 2019
Paperback / e-Book
An Amish Reunion, April 2019
Paperback / e-Book
Room on the Porch Swing, May 2018
Paperback / e-Book
An Amish Heirloom, April 2018
Paperback / e-Book
An Amish Spring, March 2018
Mass Market Paperback / e-Book
Amish Sweethearts, January 2018
Paperback / e-Book
A Place at Our Table, November 2017
Paperback / e-Book
An Amish Summer, June 2017
Paperback / e-Book
The Beloved Hope Chest, May 2017
Trade Size
The Cherished Quilt, December 2016
Trade Size / e-Book
A Heartwarming Amish Sampler, November 2016
An Amish Harvest, August 2016
Paperback / e-Book
The Courtship Basket, July 2016
Paperback / e-Book
An Amish Market, February 2016
Paperback / e-Book
The Forgotten Recipe, December 2015
Paperback / e-Book
An Amish Christmas Gift, October 2015
Paperback / e-Book
A Simple Prayer, May 2015
Paperback / e-Book
A Dream Of Home, November 2014
Paperback / e-Book
A Mother's Secret, June 2014
Paperback / e-Book
A Season Of Love, June 2012
Paperback / e-Book
A Life Of Joy, February 2012
Trade Size / e-Book
Naomi's Gift: An Amish Christmas, August 2011
A Place Of Peace, December 2010
A Plain And Simple Christmas, September 2010
A Promise Of Hope, April 2010
Trade Size
A Gift Of Grace, May 2009

Excerpt of A Place Of Peace by Amy Clipston

Chapter One

Miriam Lapp leaned over the counter and smiled at the little redheaded girl, her favorite patient at the Center for Pediatrics. "Good morning, Brittany. How are you feeling today?"

The four-year-old scrunched up her nose, causing her freckles to wrinkle. "My ear hurts."

Miriam swallowed a chuckle at the girl's adorable expression. "I'm sorry. I'm certain Dr. Sabella can help you."

Brittany's face was grim. "Yeah, but I don't want a shot."

Miriam leaned down, angling her face closer to the girl's, and lowered her voice. "I have a hunch he won't give you a shot. I bet he'll just look in your ear and make sure it's not full of potatoes."

"Pee-tatoes!" Brittany squealed a giggle, covering her mouth with her hand.

Glancing at Brittany's mother, Miriam smiled. "It's so good to see you today. How's Mr. Baker?"

"He's doing well, thank you." The woman pulled out her wallet. "How are you?"

"Doing just fine, thank you." Miriam straightened her purple scrub top. "I'll take your co-pay, Mrs. Baker."

"Thank you." The woman handed Miriam her debit card.

Turning, Miriam swiped the card through the credit card machine and snatched a pen from the counter.

"Miriam!" Lauren, the office manager, rushed over from the inner office. "Miriam, there's a call for you on line two."

"I'll be just a minute," Miriam said, punching the keys on the credit machine. "I'm running through Mrs. Baker's co-pay."

Lauren took the pen from Miriam's hand. "I got it." Frowning, she nodded toward the inner office. "Use my phone."

Arching an eyebrow in question, Miriam studied her coworker's worried face. During the year Miriam had worked for Lauren, she'd never seen her look so concerned about a phone call. "Who is it?"

"Go on," Lauren said, nodding toward the office again. "I'll take over up here. You take your time."

"Who is it?" Miriam asked again.

"Hannah," Lauren whispered.

"Hannah?" Miriam's mind raced, wracking her brain with thoughts of who it could be. She only knew one Hannah ... "My sister Hannah?"

Lauren gave a quick nod. "Yes. Now go."

Miriam's stomach twisted. In the nearly four years since she'd left her family in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, not one member of her family had ever called her. Only Hannah had written her, but called—never. Miriam had made it a point of giving Hannah her cell, home, and work numbers, and Hannah said she would only use them in case of an emergency.

Something is wrong.

Her thoughts moved to Hannah's eldest daughter, Lena Joy, who'd been born with a genetic disorder. Had something happened to her?

Her eyes widened with worry.

"Go!" Lauren nudged her toward the office. "Take all the time you need."

Taking a deep breath, Miriam rushed to the inner office, dropped into Lauren's chair, lifted the receiver to her ear, and punched the button for line two.

"Hello?" Miriam held her breath, waiting for her sister's familiar voice.

"Miriam," Hannah said. "How are you?"

The voice was sweet and familiar, bringing tears to Miriam's eyes as memories assaulted her mind. She'd treasured those nights long ago when they would lie awake late into the evening in the room they shared, whispering their future plans. Funny how it all came true for Hannah—she'd married the love of her life and had a family. Miriam, on the other hand, was the disappointment of the family. She'd left the community and never joined the Amish church or married.

Hannah was the only one who'd seemed to understand when Miriam made the choice that changed her life forever—when she left the love of her life, her family, and the only community she'd ever known. Hannah forgave her when the rest of the family did not.

Oh, how Miriam had missed her sister.

"I'm good. You?" Miriam stared absently at the date and time glowing on the phone while winding the cord around her finger.

"Gut." Hannah's Pennsylvania Dietsch brought another flood of family memories crashing down on Miriam.

"It's so wonderful to hear your voice, Hannah," Miriam said. "How is your family? How are the children?"

"Oh, the kinner are gut, danki," Hannah said. "They grow so fast."

"And Lena Joy? She's doing well?" Miriam asked and then held her breath in anticipation of the response.

"She has good and bad days, as to be expected. If only there were a cure ..." Hannah paused for a moment as if collecting her thoughts or perhaps censoring her words. "Miriam, I'm afraid I have bad news." Her voice was cautious, causing Miriam's heart to thump in her chest.

"What is it?"

"Mamm ..." She paused. "Mamm iss gschtarewe."

"What?" Miriam gasped. "Mom died?" She groaned and covered her face with her hands. "No. No, no, no. Hannah, you don't mean that."

"Ya, I'm sorry to say I do." Her sister's voice trembled. "I can't believe it either."


"Last night. In her sleep, from complications due to pneumonia. Daed found her this morning. He didn't know that she'd ..." Her voice trailed off, the unspoken words hanging between them like a thick fog.

Miriam wiped the tears trickling down her hot cheeks. "How can she be gone? I was planning a trip home over the holidays to try to make everything right."

"I'm so sorry to call you at work and tell you this."

"No, no." Miriam plucked a tissue from the box on Lauren's tidy desk and dabbed her eyes and nose. "I'm glad you let me know. I'll go home and pack and then get on the road. I'll be there as soon as I can." She glanced at her watch and then mentally calculated the trip from her home in LaGrange, Indiana, to Gordonville, Pennsylvania. "I should be there before midnight."

"Oh, gut. I was hoping you'd come."

"Of course I will. We're family."

"Ya. We are." Hannah's voice trembled. "Drive safely. Ich liebe dich, Schweschder."

"I will." Miriam tried in vain to stop the tears flowing from her eyes. "I love you too, Sister."

After dropping the receiver into the cradle, Miriam cupped her hands to her face and sobbed while memories of her mother flooded her mind. The last time she'd seen her mother was the night she snuck out of the farmhouse and left the community to move to Indiana and live with her cousin Abby.

Lifting the receiver to her ear again, Miriam dialed Abby's office and groaned when voicemail picked up.

"You've reached the voicemail for Abigail Johnston, paralegal with Wainwright, Morrison, and Rhodes," Abby's voice sang into the phone line. "I'm either on the phone or away from my desk. Please leave a detailed message, including your name, the time and date of your call, your phone number, and the nature of your call, and I will call you back as soon as I return. Thank you."

After the shrill beep ended, Miriam took a deep breath. "Abby, it's me." Before she could stop them, the tears started, and her voice was thick. "Call me. I just got the most horrible news. Hannah called me, and my mamm ..." Her voice trailed off; she couldn't say the word. "I'm heading home to pack up and leave for Gordonville right away. Call me. Bye."

She slammed the phone down and stood. After explaining the situation to Lauren, she rushed to the apartment she'd shared with Abby since Abby's husband left her two years ago.

Miriam was drowning in memories and packing when the door to her bedroom whooshed open, dragging across the worn tan carpet.

"What's going on?" a voice behind her asked.

Miriam turned to find her cousin standing in the doorway, clad in her best blue suit. Her light brown hair was cut in a short, stylish bob, perfect for a professional climbing the corporate ladder. She looked the part of an aspiring lawyer.

"Abby," Miriam said. "What are you doing here?"

"I left the office as soon as I got your voicemail." Her eyes were full of concern. "What did Hannah say?"

"Mamm passed away last night." Miriam's voice broke on the last word. Covering her mouth with her hands, she choked back a sob.

"Oh no." Abby encircled her in a hug. "I'm so sorry."

"I can't believe it," Miriam choked through her sobs. "I was going to surprise her with a visit over Christmas and try to work things out. I wanted to make things right. I wanted to see her and talk to her in person. But, now ... Now she's—"

"Shhh." Abby patted her back. "It's going to be all right."

"But how?" Miriam swiped her tears away with the back of her hands.

A somber smile turned up her cousin's lips. "Remember what you told me when that snake of a husband of mine left me for his perky secretary?"

Miriam shook her head. "Not really."

"You reminded me of a very important verse from Isaiah—'those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.'" Abby's eyes were serious. "We'll get through this. I promise."

Biting her bottom lip, Miriam nodded.

"I'll pack a few things, and we'll get on the road." Abby headed for the door.

"You're coming with me?"

Abby gave a little shrug. "Of course I am. Did you honestly think I'd let you face the family alone after nearly four years?"

Miriam let out a sigh. "I'd hoped not."

Abby gestured toward the suitcase. "Get packed, and we'll get on the road. With any luck, we'll be there before midnight. I imagine your dad and my parents won't welcome us with open arms. I guess we'll stay with Aunt Edna?"

Miriam nodded. "I was thinking that. As far as I know, she's still living alone in that little house on my daed's farm."

"I should have said Aenti Edna." Abby smiled. "Guess I better brush up on my Pennsylvania Dietsch, huh? Man, how long has it been since I've been back there?"

"Six years, right?" Miriam lowered herself onto her double bed next to her suitcase.

"Yeah, I guess so." Abby shook her head and stepped toward the door. "Well, we have a long ride ahead of us. We better get on the road."

Taking a deep breath, Miriam rose from the bed and fished a few blouses from her dresser. Closing her eyes, she whispered a prayer for strength and courage as she embarked on this painful trip to her past.

Excerpt from A Place Of Peace by Amy Clipston
All rights reserved by publisher and author

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