Enterprising (Novel)

Novel Sequel to Driftless Summer- in progress (50,000 words to date)
"Enterprising", is the third novel in the series. Crane Maddox has retired from teaching and needs something to do.

Chapter One

Crane watched from their bed as Beth moved around the room opening drawers and standing in front of her closet, getting ready for work. She asked hopefully, “What’re you doing today?”
Crane rolled over and propped himself up on an elbow, “I don’t know, I leave messages for your brother, but he never calls back. I don’t have anyone to play with anymore.”
“You should get a job, why don’t you sub?”
“Teach? I don’t think so. I’d have to take classes to renew my license and the kids treat subs like shit.”
“It isn’t like that anymore, they know they can’t get away with that kind of behavior. We need subs and I already asked if you could do it. They said you could get a provisional license. All you need is a degree and you have that.”
“I’ll call Gare again today, and if he won’t talk to me I’ll consider getting a job or something. I have some sculptures I want to make, I might do that.”
Gerhard didn’t like Ray, and since the shooting, hadn’t shown his face. He thinks there might be unresolved legal issues and doesn’t want to stir them up. There aren’t, but he doesn’t trust my judgment anymore.
“We don’t have room for any new sculptures, you should fix the one those kids bent.”
Beth put on a different pair of shoes and was ready to go downstairs for breakfast. She he stood at the head of the bed with elbows bent and palms facing towards the ceiling, “What do you think?”
Crane looked at her outfit, then smiled and nodded. “I’m pretty sure the wind bent it—I made that one before I started doubling the uprights.”
Beth said, “Could you come down and have breakfast with me? You aren’t going to stay in bed all day are you?”
“Oh sure, like I would stay in bed all day. I was about to get up. Come on, I’ll make you an omelet.” Crane leapt from bed and went down the stairs without dressing.
The sun was just coming up and painted a multi-colored background for the bare oaks. As he filled the teapot, Crane watched the show through the windows behind the sink. “Pink and orange is a difficult combination to get right don’t you think?”
Beth leaned on the refrigerator repeating the word “Poop”. Soon, Screech, their little parrot, raised his wings, and let loose a heavy wet mass into the garbage can. If you could get past the grossness, it was quite the little trick. He was now able to get the reward of a walnut or banana.
Crane had witnessed the routine enough to ignore it as he put the teapot on the stove, and continued to observe the changing sky. “What’s wrong babe?” Beth asked.
“Nothing, why”?
“I proffered my butt and you didn’t give me a spank.”
Crane replied in a narrator’s voice, “It was over, he didn’t love her anymore.” They laughed.
“I was watching the colors change.”
“We have the best view don’t we? When we sell the house, we should show it at dawn.”
Crane broke two eggs into a bowl and whipped them with a fork, “What kind do you want? Cream cheese?”
“That sounds good. There’s a little hunk of cheddar left; use that too.”
Crane flipped the eggs, and added the cheese, and then folded it in half as it slid onto the plate. It was eaten standing at the counter.