Monday, August 25, 2014

Excerpt From Kindred (The Birthrite Series, #2)

Hey all,

Since I'm also working on Kindred (Book 2) tonight, here is an excerpt from it. As I said, Kindred focuses more on the story of Dorothy's cousin, Cletus, though we do revisit characters from Descent as well.

Other excerpts of early drafts from future books in the series can also be found here.


In 1935, a couple years following a tragic death in his family, 20-year-old Cletus Blake comes across the camp belonging to a Romani family passing through. It is there he meets seventeen-year-old Alisa, and begins a chain reaction that will reunite two families who once held a great, if unconventional, friendship...along with a whole lot more... 


Summer of 1935

The following day, Cletus returned. How he was going to muster up the courage to speak to her, he was still unsure of. He had always been shy around girls, but he had absolutely no experience interacting with gypsies.
How would they even react to me?  he wondered.
He then saw her, exiting one of the wagons and carrying a percussion instrument and a guitar case. She was also alone. Finally, here was his chance.
Taking in a breath, he approached her, quickly but with caution. “Um, hello,” he said.
Her steps ceased and she stared at him with wide eyes. There was a glint of recognition, but also apprehensiveness and a small amount of fright.
Being this close to her was almost overwhelming. She was here with him, and this time he wasn't dreaming.
She squinted her eyes, as though trying to figure out what to make of him.
“Those look heavy,” he continued, trying to keep his calm, “I can carry them for you if you would like.”
The girl flinched slightly and blinked before she said, “Well, I am fine and I really don't need your help.” With that, she continued walking.
A humilating pain stabbed Cletus's gut. Slowly, he turned and started to walk away while trying to hold on to the small amount of diginity he had left. Then, her voice called to him.
“I am sorry,” she said.
Cletus turned back to face her and saw the remorse on her face. She set her instruments down and took a rather timid step forward. “I did not mean to be harsh with you. It is just that I am tired from traveling. We just arrived in town yesterday and I usually don’t sleep well in a new area.”
Cletus relaxed a little as relief filled him. “I'm sorry if I offended you," he said. "I offered because I'm also a musician and I know that lugging around instruments all day can get…well…heavy…”
She continued toward him until he saw the color of her light brown eyes that were flecked with gold and set off by her bronzed skin. Her sandy brown hair fell freely down her shoulders in a cascade of tight curls.
“My name is Cletus,” he said extending his hand to her. "Cletus Blake. My family is actually not too far from here."
She looked down at his hand as if trying to decide whether or not to take it. But she did. Both felt a familiar current pulse through them at the touch of the other.
“I am Alisa,” she replied.
They stared at one another for a moment until she broke the silence. “You said you play instruments?”
“Yes," Cletus began. "My family...”
“Alisa!” A deep voice interrupted them.
Alisa quickly let go of Cletus's hand as the two turned in the direction of the young man who had been playing lead guitar. His dark eyes studied Cletus with great intent and it was then Cletus noticed the wooden crucifix the other young man wore.
Cletus watched as the young man and Alisa communicated to one another in a language unfamiliar to him.
Then, Alisa turned back to Cletus. “I am sorry,” she said, “I have to go.”  She gave him a small smile before joining the other young man.
Alisa's companion turned back to look at Cletus once more as he took her back into the camp.

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My stories, "The Cemetery by the Lake" and "Dusk to Dawn" are available at Smashwords and Barnes & Noble NOOK. More retailers will follow, but Smashwords is pretty compatible with most e-reader and PC formats.
and Amazon
"The Cemetery by the Lake" at Smashwords and Barnes & Noble NOOK
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Tiffany on Goodreads
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