Happy New Year, everyone. I’m back. Sorry for being absent, but December was a bit busy. Welcome to my post on WIP IT UP WEDNESDAY. If you are new to this hop or are just now deciding that joining this hop would be a great idea, visit the WIP IT IP WEDNESDAY blog home page at: http://wipitupwednesday.blogspot.co.uk/ to read the sign-up instructions. Also on that page, you will find links to other wonderful authors and their WIP.
Today I’ll be continuing to share an excerpt from my upcoming novella, Saying Goodbye. This novel will go on sale this Saturday, January 9, 2016.
The following snippet comes right after the last snippet I posted. In this scene, Erica is trying to get through Michael’s burial.
Two days later, they buried him in one of the most beautiful places Erica had ever seen. His family had a private cemetery about an hour north of Hampton, the city she lived in, in a small country town set inside the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains called Piney Hill. A creek ran through the backside of the cemetery, and it was near that creek that they laid him to rest.
Caroline tried to coax Erica into sitting in the front row with his family as the preacher spoke and they lowered his body, but she refused.
Only her parents traveled with her to the burial. James had to work and Emmy refused to talk about Michael after the funeral, so she stayed with their mother’s parents. Erica and her family stood in the back and to the side of the large group. She could hear everything and see more than she wanted.
After the funeral, most of his family walked down the road to the two-story cabin where his grandmother lived. There was food and conversation waiting at her house. Food that Erica didn’t want to eat and conversation she didn’t want to have. To avoid it all, she stayed by his grave, watching the burial crew do their work. Her mother tried to wait with her, but her father pulled his wife along, thinking that if they gave her space, she would eventually join them.
Michael’s mother remained for a bit as well, but the two women didn’t speak to one another, didn’t even acknowledge the other’s presence. When Caroline turned to leave an hour or so later, Erica cut her eyes toward her for only a second. Caroline nodded to her and gave her a fake half-smile, and Erica only nodded in return, then watched as the woman walked down to the house.
Erica watched as the men packed up the chairs, the canopy, and the fake green carpet. She watched as they slowly filled the hole with dirt. Why she watched, she didn’t know. Was she hoping that at the last moment Michael would pop open the lid of the casket and say surprise? Yes. Did she believe he would actually do it? No. She didn’t know why she had to see things to the end, but she did. To prove to herself that this was all real, this was all actually happening, she had to witness every part of it.
The sun was starting to set before her father came to get her. He carried a plate of food and bottle of water, and told her to eat. She took the items from him, but kept her eyes on the mound of dirt before her.
“Erica, if you don’t eat, I’m going to take you to the doctor. I know it has only been a few days, and I want you to grieve, but you can’t starve yourself. Michael wouldn’t want you neglecting yourself this way,” her father said, taking a seat next to her in the grass.
Starving herself hadn’t been the plan. She just wasn’t hungry. A little thirsty, yes, but not hungry. To pacify him, she took a drink of the water and ate one of the tiny sandwiches. The sandwich was tasteless…everything was tasteless in those days, which was another reason why she wasn’t eating.
That little bit of a bite wasn’t enough for her father, though. He sighed loudly, and said, “That’s it. If you aren’t eating by tomorrow we’re going to see Dr. Haddock.”
“Daddy,” she said in low tone, pleading with him not to push the subject.
“Don’t ‘Daddy’ me. I’m not losing my daughter. I know you loved him, and I truly believe he loved you, but he’s gone. I’m sorry that you have to go through this. I’m sorry his family has to go through this. I’m sorry for anyone who loses someone they love so dearly. No father ever wants to see his child go through something like this, but I will not let you lose yourself in your grief. You’re a strong woman. I know that right now you feel as if your world has fallen apart, and it has, but you will need to start picking up the pieces soon.”
Appalled by his words, she slung the plate onto the ground in front of her and turned to him. She opened her mouth to speak, but he cut her off.
“I’m not saying you have to have a new boyfriend next week. I don’t expect you to have one next year let alone next week. But I do expect you to live, go back to work, finish school, find your own place in the world, have a life. Your life isn’t over because his ended suddenly. You’re young. Your life is just beginning.”
Erica both loved and hated him for his words. There wasn’t anything in the world she wanted aside from Michael, but her father was right, even though she didn’t want him to be right that second. Opening her mouth, she began to tell him how much she loved him, but what came out were sobs.
Her father folded her into his lap and held her as if she were five years old again. He rocked her, petted her hair, let her wipe her nose on his shirt, and he even cried a little with her…for her.
That’s it for today. I hope you enjoyed it.
A paranormal love story
Now available for pre-order for $1.99
Childhood sweethearts, Michael and Erica, thought they would have the prefect life together—the career, the house, the kids, the grandkids, the dying old holding each other’s hands. What they hadn’t planned for was for a car accident to take Michael’s life and leave Erica to face her future alone.
However, after discovering that Michael’s spirit has the ability to occasionally interact with the human world, they begin to wonder if they can’t make his presence on Earth permanent.
Although, with so many years gone by, can they reignite the flame that had fueled their teenage romance and more importantly can they live with the sacrifices they must make in order get back the future they lost?