Bradford's Secret

by Torry Martin

Dear B. Log,

You’re not gonna believe this, but I just found out that the Bassett family butler, Bradford, has a secret he’s been hiding for 49 years! I’m so shocked I can’t speak, which is why I’m typing.

I was in Illinois last weekend for the 15th wedding anniversary of my twin brother, Wellington. While I helped Bradford and Chef Yumi polish silverware, I asked Bradford: “Have you ever been in love?”

Bradford raised an eyebrow. “Why do you ask?”

“I don’t know. I just know you’ve never been married.”

“I think Monsieur Vooton ask because he is nosey,” Chef Yumi teased.

Bradford gave a slight grin while I continued. “Since it’s my brother’s anniversary, I guess I’m thinking about romance. So, have you?”

“Have I what?” Bradford said.

“Been in love?”

Bradford paused. “Yes, Wooton. I have.”

“I’m not talking about loving a book, a goldfish or a really good processed cheese spread.”

“Processed cheese is sin!” Chef Yumi bellowed.

“Well, it’s high in calories,” I confessed. “But Bradford, I’m talking about being in love with a real person.”

“So am I. And yes, I can quite honestly say that not only have I been in love, but I still am and have been for the last 49 years.”

Bradford’s answer literally floored me! I dropped the silverware I was polishing and had to get on my hands and knees to pick it up. As Bradford helped me to my feet, I begged for details.

“Her name was Daffodil June Pine,” Bradford said. “We used to meet regularly at Bitsey’s Tea Shoppe in Oxford, England. I was in butler school while she was in etiquette school. She was the most fascinating lady I’ve ever met.”

“Why?”

“Well, she had a tremendous sense of adventure, a winning sense of humor and a real love for God.”

“And that’s what made her fascinating?”

“That, and the fact that she was a spy.”

“WHAT?”

“Oh relax, Wooton,” Bradford said. “I was a spy, too.”

“DOUBLE WHAT?!”

“It was the Cold War. We were fighting communism; everyone was a spy,” Bradford said.

“Da’s right, Vooton.” Chef Yumi’s voice startled me. “Even I vas a spy.”

“Whoa! I forgot you were in the room!”

“See? Da’s how good I vas.” Chef Yumi nodded.

“WHO ARE YOU PEOPLE?!?”

“Relax, Wooton,” Bradford said. “We were the good guys, allied together. You should get a history book and read about it.”

“So whatever happened to Daffodil June Pine?” I asked.

“That’s the tricky part,” Bradford said. “I still pray for her every day.”

Just then, Wellington burst into the kitchen and grabbed my arm. “Grandfather is here asking for you!”

Wellington dragged me to the foyer, but my mind was still on Bradford. I kept thinking about how he was always there to help me when I was growing up, and I determined to help him, too. I would find Daffodil June Pine—even if it meant I could never eat processed cheese spread ever again!

This article first appeared in the March 2011 issue of Focus on the Family Clubhouse magazine. Copyright © 2011 by Torry Martin. Used by permission. Illustration © Gary Locke.