The Girls Fall in Love

Adjacent Worlds
The Girls Fall In Love

Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport
Texas, United States of America
Thursday, July 11, 1985
 
Kim was the first of the Maclarens to enter the terminal.  She was followed by her mother, father and sister Marie.  Alice saw Kim slow as she caught sight of the Reynolds.  Well not all of the Reynolds, just Rob.  She knew that Kim saw his parents Beth and Tom and his sister Lynn but that all her attention was on Rob.  Alice also saw that Kim was the one that had Rob’s attention.  She smiled.  It is good that some of my dreams are happy ones.
 
It had been over twenty years since Alice and Beth had met.  Then Beth had been a visiting professor at Edinburgh University and Alice a student.  Both had been young woman who’s abilities in mathematics was causing disturbances in the mostly male field.  Now they were both among the tops in the field.  Some claimed that Alice’s work would eclipse Albert Einstein.  Today she and her family had come to Texas where she would be a visiting professor at SMU where Beth taught.  The two families had visited each other many times over the years, but this would be a much longer visit.

Rental House
University Park, Texas
Thursday, July 11, 1985

“Beth, this is a wonderful house that you and Tom found for us.”  Alice followed Beth into the kitchen.  “A dishwasher.  I know the girls will be glad to have that.”

“Mom, I would like to have the bedroom in the back.  You can see a stream just like at home.”  Marie called from upstairs.

“Good.  I like the one in front.  The closet is bigger and the bathroom has a door to my room.”  Kim also had been looking at the bedrooms.

“My room also has a door to the bathroom.  Mom, yours and dad’s bedroom is so large.  Wow!  It has its own bathroom with a huge bathtub.”

As Alice started up the stairs, the front door opened with the first of their baggage.

“Jess, follow me upstairs.  We have our own bathroom with a large bathtub.”  She gave him a wink.

Jess realized what Alice is thinking and hurries after her with the two bags that he is carrying.

Tom and Rob Reynolds followed with more bags.

“I’ll close the door.”  Lynn Reynolds then followed the others upstairs.

“Kim, where do you want your bags?”  Rob blushed when Kim smiled at him.

“In the front bedroom.”  She pointed, then followed him into the bedroom.

“Lynn, can you help me unpack.”  Marie distracted Lynn from following her brother and Kim.

“You just want them to be alone.”  Lynn spoke softly so only Marie can hear.

“True.  Mom says that you are interested in math and want to be a professor like our mothers.”

“Oh.  I love the clear thinking and being able to describe things mathematically.”  Lynn forgot all about Rob and Kim as she talked mathematics with Marie as she helped her with her clothes.

Tom and Jess laughed as they exit the front door to get more bags.

“Kim has been mentioning Rob a lot the past couple of months.  I think your visit last Christmas started it.”

“Yes, Rob has mentioned her a lot recently.  Do you think that they are too young to get serious.”

“They are older than Alice and I were.  Kim and Marie take after their mother.  Alice held off getting married until it would not interfere with her studies.  Kim will be a doctor, so it will be awhile before she will be ready to marry.”

“I hope Rob will be able to support a family when they are ready.”  Tom remembers holding off asking Beth to marry him until he had a few years at TI.

“Alice and I have given the girls a portion of those TI shares that they have been paying me with.  Both of them will get scholarships at Edinburgh so money will not be a consideration for either of them for getting married.”

“I would think not.  I have a new boss and he is eager to meet you.  When I mentioned that you had requested training to learn how to design IC’s, he was hesitant at first.  When he checked you out and found out how many shares of TI you controlled and the patents that you had licensed to us and the fact that you had other patents, he told me to have you come in to meet with him.”

“Good.  I have had a good relationship with TI.  To which I owe a lot of that to you.  I expect the relationship will continue to grow and be mutually beneficial.”  Jess knew from Alice’s dreams that it would become much more than that.

“You and Alice have such long range plans.  Anything that you are ready to share with us?”

“No yet.  We are still trying to understand some things.  I will tell you that the two of us and Will started our planning when we were ten.”

“Ten!”  Tom was amazed that the three of them had been planning something for so long.  “How does Will fit into your plans?”  Tom had met Jess’s cousin and his family a number of times in Scotland before he and his family had moved to Australia.

“Each of us chose our careers based on what our part in the plan was.  It is amazing that we were also the right person for our parts.  Will and I could not have switched, no matter how similar we are.”

“You sound like you feel that what you are doing is preordained.”

“You know that Alice has dreams that tell her of possible futures.  Well one of her early dreams, led us to the course that we have taken.  When we do things towards that future that she sees, we mostly find things in the dreams improving.  Sometimes, we find that we did something that makes things worse.”  Jess paused and considered what he should tell Tom at this time.  “I will tell you that you and your family are important to what she sees in her dreams.  When Alice met Beth and when we attended your wedding, Alice’s dreams took major steps forward.  Will and Leslie and their children are also a major part of what will be happening.  Young Robert is the most important person that we have identified.”

“He is only a toddler.”

“Yes, but he appeared as a young man in Alice’s second dream which led to our starting our plans.”  And we still do not know who the two women with him are.

“So we are your friends because of the dreams.”  Tom wondered if the relationship was being driven because of the dreams.

“No.”  Jess laughed.  “Beth and Alice hit it off when they met.  It was a while before Alice learned how important the meeting was.  Kim and Marie know very little about the dreams.  Yes, it is convenient for Kim and Rob that we are here for a year, but we started to plan for Alice to teach a year here right after Beth’s year was up at Edinburgh.  This is that time for many reasons.  One of which is what I will be learning at TI.  We still do not know where that fits in.”

“That is a lot to think about.”

“Yes, it is a path to follow, but let us enjoy the steps along the way.”

Jess and Tom each grabbed a couple of bags and headed back into the house.

Rental House
University Park, Texas
Saturday, June 14, 1986

“Kim, I love you.”  Rob Reynolds was walking with his arm around her shoulder.  They were near the stream behind the home that Kim had shared with her family for the last year.

“Rob, I love you.  I wish we could stay together but I will be studying at Edinburgh and you will be in California at Stanford.  We each have plans that will keep us apart for the next few years.

“Kim, will you marry me.”

“Rob, I will marry you.  It will be a few years from now but we will be wed and make our lives together.”

“How can you be so calm about us being apart.”

“Because I have found you.  It will be a few years, but we will have the rest of our lives.”

I will miss you so much.

I will miss you also.  Kim is the first to realize that neither of them has spoken.

You heard my thoughts just as I heard yours.
 
How is this possible?  Rob wonders what had brought out this ability to communicate mentally.

I hope it will work when I am back in Scotland.
 
Yes, this would help us to be close while we are so far apart.
 
I do not think that we should tell anybody.
 
Who would believe us?
 
My mother for sure.  Some of what she dreams comes true.  I wonder if she and dad can communicate like this.
 
Let us keep it to ourselves.  Something special between us.  Rob kissed Kim.

*******

Marie entered Kim’s room and sat on the bed beside her.  “Did he ask you?”  She had known that something had happened when Kim and Rob had taken the walk out back after they had come back from the movie.

“Yes, and I told him that I would marry him, but not for a few years.”

“I am so happy for you.  Both of you.”  Marie hugged her sister.  Both girls were in tears.  “I take it that he was willing to wait.”

“Yes, I want to be in medical school before we are married.  I’m not sure when we should have the children.  I need to talk to Aunt Marge.  Alice’s sister Marge was a professor at the University of Edinburgh School of Medicine.

“I don’t think that I can wait that long.”

“You have to meet him first.”  Kim laughs.

“I will meet him soon.  I cannot wait to start classes.”

“You have had a dream like mom?”

“No, when I think of meeting him, I always think about the statue of Maxwell.”

“The one of James Clerk Maxwell on George Street?”

“Yes, I like to go there when I want to think.”

“So you will be sitting there thinking.  He will walk up to you and say that you are the most beautiful women in the world and ask you to marry him.”

“No, he will ask directions.”  Marie had not known that before she spoke.  “That is new.”

“Well, I know where to find you for the next couple of months.”

*******

James Clerk Maxwell Statue on George Street
Edinburgh, Scotland
Thursday, July 17, 1986

It was a warm sunny day when John walked up to Marie where she sat near the Maxwell statue.  She had a notebook open and was making notations.

“Can you tell me how to reach the Scottish National Portrait Gallery?”  She’s beautiful.

Marie looked up to see a man the height of her father but with sandy colored hair.  He was a few years older than her eighteen years.  It’s him!  The small smile that she had had threatened to break into a grin.  “I would be happy to walk with you there.  I have been sitting here too long and could use the exercise.”

John had gotten lost in walking from the university.  When he had seen Marie sitting there absorbed in what she was writing, he had been drawn to speak to her.  Now he wondered if she might like to show him the gallery and then have something to eat afterwards.  Anything so that he could get to know her.

“I had not wanted more than directions but would be very happy to have you show me the way.  I have an assignment that requires me to write about James Clerk Maxwell.  I want to view his portrait before I go to the library and read about him.  I find that having an image of a person helps me to understand them better.”
Marie laughed.  When she saw the look on John’s face, she stopped to explain.  “I am very familiar with him.  I like to sit by his statue when I am thinking.”  She pointed to the statue behind her.

John looked at the statue in surprise.  “I had forgotten about the statue.  Father was on the committee of the commission for it.  He said that Dame Alice had called him personally.  That she was very insistent that the statue should be erected.”

“Mother had wanted it for the centennial of his death but was not able to get the help she needed until Uncle Will suggested that she contact two MPs that he had met.”

“You are Major Maclaren’s niece and Dame Alice Maclaren’s daughter.”  John had heard his father speak about both of them.  As a member of parliament his father knew many famous and powerful people, but he had never understood the respect and awe that his father had shown when he spoke of the Maclarens.

“Marie Maclaren.  As a guess, I would say that you are John Lawrence’s son.  You look like him.”  This is no coincidence.  Things like this just do not happen.  I will have to have a long talk with mother.

“Yes, I am John Harvey Lawrence.  I feel extremely fortunate to meet you.  May I be forward and ask your help in learning more about James Maxwell.”  How quickly she figured out who I was and she is beautiful.  I hope she says yes.

“I would very much enjoy assisting you to learn about James Clerk Maxwell.  The first thing is that is important to think of him as James Clerk Maxwell.”  She looks away for a second.  Yes, tell him.  “Would it surprise you if I told you that I was sitting here waiting for you, but I did not know who you would be until just a couple of minutes ago.”

She had been waiting for him.  As the implication of her statement to his getting to know her better dawns on him, a big smile spreads across his face.  “I would like to hear more about what brought you here to wait for me, but I believe if we started that discussion that I would forget all about James Clerk Maxwell.  So tell me what draws you here while I look at his statue.  Then if you would accomplish me to the gallery, I will buy you lunch afterwards.”

Mother had cancelled their usual lunch that morning.  Had she known?  She probably would not say but the reason that she gave had not seemed that urgent.  “Clerk Maxwell was the first person to describe the world in purely mathematical terms.  I find that important in understanding the many current theories especially those of my mother.”

They discussed James Clerk Maxwell up until they were served lunch.

“Thank you, Marie.  I could never have gotten such an understanding of him through reading about him even with the portrait to look at.”

“I enjoy talking about him, but with you I have spoken of the special meaning that he has for me.”

“Let us eat.  Afterwards you can explain what brought you to be there today when I came by.”

After lunch, Marie felt a little reluctant to tell John that she had been sitting there every day that she had the free time since they had gotten back from Texas.  “I sometimes know something will happen.  I have known for over a month that I would meet you at the statue.  Before we went to Texas, I had found that I enjoyed sitting there when I needed to think on mathematical problems.  When we were getting ready to come back, I knew Rob was going to ask my sister Marie to marry him.  She is a year younger than me.  We have known Rob and his family all our lives.  I started to wonder when I would meet the man that I would marry.”  Marie was very vividly blushing.  Being a red head meant that it was very, very obvious.  “Then I knew that I would meet him after we returned.  When Kim told me that Rob had asked her, I knew that I would meet him at the statue.”  She stared down at the table, unable to meet John’s eyes.

“Well, I think that I will try to surprise you if I would ask you that question.  I feel that you would enjoy that.”  John was smiling at her.

“Yes, I would.”  John had not said that he would ask her someday only that if he did that he would try and surprise her.  I will not know ahead of time.  It will be a surprise.  I know it will happen but good surprises are special and this would be the most special one of all.

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