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At the opposite end of the graveyard, she came across two headstones placed side-by-side. Their edges nearly touched, as though the couple lying beneath refused to separate, even in death. The lifeless gray exteriors brightened as she approached, suddenly illuminated by the parting of clouds above. Icicle moonbeams cast a sinister blue light upon the markers, spotlighting the names engraved upon their stony surfaces.
The first belonged to a man. Barnabas Flannery, born March 21, 1809, died December 23, 1845. Grieving husband. A blow of anguish nearly knocked Laura to her knees. With a shaking hand, she reached out and traced his name with her fingertips.
When her gaze shifted to the next stone, Laura felt the air escape her lungs in one big whoosh! Her legs grew weak, her mind swooned, and it took every ounce of strength she had not to faint. Laura Flannery, born November 8, 1810, died December 22, 1845. Grieving mother.
"Oh, dear God. This can't be." She choked on a strained sob.
But just as she'd known to whom all the other markers belonged, Laura knew this one was hers. And the one next to it was her husband's.