She was safely halfway across the floor when she remembered she needed her sunbonnet, or her face would suffer a recurrence of the burn it received on her trip to the Cuchara land. Even though Mrs. Bates's sweet leather clasp would keep her hair in order, it would not help with the sun.
Restraining a sigh, Marie finished her trek to the door and placed her shoes beside the wall. Then she retraced her steps across the room and up the ladder. Feeling her way in the darkness deeper than stove soot, she found the article and put it on her head, tying the strings under her chin. This severely restricted her sight to the sides, but at least she would have the bonnet when she needed it tomorrow.
In her haste to get back to the door, she almost stepped on the squeaking floorboard, but stopped herself in time, rocking in her abrupt halt, and holding her breath as Pa snorted in his sleep.
Would he awake? Was her escape to be thwarted? She didn't dare breathe until the sonorous exhalations became regular again. Then she let out her breath slowly, sidestepped to avoid the villainous board, and resumed her trip across the room.
Now, to get out the door. The hinges sometimes made noise, but Marie hoped the oil she had put on the leather that afternoon would keep that from happening. She picked up her shoes, took a shuddering breath, and pulled the latch.
The wooden stop lifted, the door opened soundlessly at her touch, and then, she was free!