A Phoenix Rises at Forrest Glen
Perfectionists have a way of irritating normal people with their fussy attention to details and slowness. In rare cases, a perfectionist can become a master in his or her profession and also be highly productive while attending to minute details. Wade Elliot had that rare blend of ‘doing it right the first time’ but in a competitive time frame. As a homebuilder he had no choice and had to work longer hours than most to compete in the commercial world. Although able and efficient, his aspiration to be the world’s best homebuilder was dashed when incompetent and unscrupulous employees caused his bankruptcy.
Wade’s empathetic attorney, a friend dating from childhood, also had a client who needed the type of expertise that Wade could offer concerning home building and restoration. Molly Forrest had just received an old but large home in Winston-Salem, NC as part of her divorce settlement. Her dilemma was should she restore it and move in, or sell the home and six acres that abutted Reynolda House, the palatial home place of R. J. Reynolds, founder of Reynolds Tobacco Company.
A thorough mechanical and structural inspection, plus evaluation its restoration potential, seemed necessary before making that decision. On the recommendation of their mutual attorney, Molly asked Wade to accompany her to Winston-Salem for the inspection and he consented, thinking it would be a three-day consulting job and a modest paycheck, which he badly needed.
The storied history of Forrest Glen intrigued Wade. Completed in 1921 and named after its original owner, William Henry Forrest, the estate captivated Wade and he immediately knew that it was a restoration project that he would dearly love to orchestrate. During the site inspection, he accidentally learned about a planned assassination of Molly that could even jeopardize his own life.
Wade’s penchant for thorough planning, attention to details and drawing logical conclusions led him to a possible solution to Molly’s problems - - staying alive and restoration of Forrest Glen. Gaining Molly’s trust was the first priority, and under the bizarre circumstances, not an easy thing to accomplish. Fright, physical hardship, and a complicated relationship between the two evolved during the next eighteen months, as Wade became Molly’s mentor, protector, inspiration and love interest. Unexpected passions arose in Molly who had just retreated from a bad marriage and lacked purpose in her life. Wade Elliot and Forrest Glen gave her new reasons to live but others wanted her dead. Wade, the perfectionist and master homebuilder, wanted Molly to live for selfish reasons and became her champion during a frightful period. You expect and demand perfection from those holding your life in the balance, and Wade delivered in a most unusual way.