The Soup Bean War

Chapter One

The Letters

"Run, Em, run!" Laura screamed as she and her little sister hurried barefoot down the dirt driveway.

"I'm running as fast as I can." Emily huffed and puffed as she struggled to keep up with Laura.

"We gotta make it to the school! We gotta get out of their way!" Laura yelled. "They'll kill us if they catch us!"

Laura's long, thick blonde hair flew behind her in the muggy evening air. Emily's thin, baby-fine brown hair clung to her sweaty little head. The girls made a sharp contrast to the stillness of the valley and the majestic Appalachian Mountains, covered in pines, oaks, cedars, and silver maples. The mountains surrounded and protected them as their girlish squeals broke the silence of the valley.

Chasing the girls were their older twin sisters, Mary and Martha.

"You get back here with that!" Martha screamed. "I'll kill you when I catch you, Laura Conn!"

"Get under the floor. Get under the floor," Laura commanded Emily. They both ducked and scooted under the floor of the old school building. The white one-roomed building was set on blocks, just low enough that the girls could find a safe haven.

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