Other than her Mom and Dad, I’ve known Molly longer than anyone in the world. I was her doctor in the newborn nursery, and about half raised the child. I saw her through grade school, cheer-leading and college. She married Johnathan, her high school sweetheart. I wasn’t as close as her Dad- he gave her away, but if she’d had a best man I guess I’d been it after her father. We went to the wedding, and my wife bought them a real nice little silver platter at Belk’s.
At the time of the Mandolin Case, Molly was in her twenties, but she looked like a teenager. She was 5’2″ and 118 pounds, a tousle-haired brunette with dark eyes and olive skin. I thought she was almost as pretty as my wife was in our engagement picture.
Molly loved motorcycles. She and Johnny used to ride Indie’s Indian Motorbike when they were in High School. Some folks tried to make out like the relationship between Molly and Indie wasn’t right. That was not just a lie, but a damn lie. I was beyond angry when they tried to advance that argument. In the Mandolin Case, Molly turned out to be very important to Indie. He said it was most unusual for such a young woman to help save an old man, but she sure did.
Molly was just a kid, and an unlikely heroine, but she was determined. There is a part of the story that hurts. She suffered some abusive behavior from one person- you’ll understand when you read the book- but she was able to overcome. Whenever she bowed up to help Indie it was part of how she healed. She might be just a young’un, but I have all admiration for her. She was strong beyond her years.
Molly’s favorite actress was Julia Roberts, but her movie choice was ‘Fried Green Tomatoes.’ Her favorite song was Molly and Tenbrooks (no surprise there) and she would ask Indie to do a fiddle kick-off every time we played it. A lady named Tag got her hooked on the Beatles and classic rock ‘n roll. Her favorite T.V. show was ‘C.S.I.’ and she liked ‘House’ too. House reminded her a little of Indie, but she thought he took the character a bit too far.
Tough as the child was, her taste in books was young and feminine. She liked ‘Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm’ and ‘Anne of Green Gables.’ Her favorite blog is The Lit Connection. It is on my blogroll.
Molly loved horses, bluegrass and Bill Monroe, so her name was quite appropriate. The song her parents named her for, Molly and Tenbrooks, was about a turn of the last century horse race. (I think in Kentucky) She was athletic too, and played basketball and ran track in high school.
Molly moved up North after high school, and returned there after the Mandolin Case was over. As I began to write up the story, I realized she hasn’t been back to Harvey County for the last four or five years. I’d love to see her again; she was a favorite patient.
I’ll close with the words to Bill Monroe’s song, and send the words out to my little friend Molly Tenbrooks. All the best to ya, kid.
‘Run ole Molly Run, Run ole Molly run.”
“Tenbrooks gonna beat you you in the bright shining sun.”
Ain’t no one ever gonna beat you, Molly. You’re as tough a young lady as I ever ran into and I’m proud to have known you.