Our last group blog of the year is to write a short story, flash fiction, or present an excerpt from one of your books.
My original plan was to write a short story. Then the holidays crept up and suddenly it’s time to post and I haven’t written anything, at least not a short story for this post. I have been writing on Death Southern Style and it’s almost finished, and I have the cover now, which I will reveal shortly.
So, I decided I’d share an excerpt from Death Southern Style.
After Julie paid the taxi she stood on the street and stared at the small sign tacked over the door of the old wooden house, Chez Voodoo.
She had come here with her mother often and was comfortable with voodoo. She knew it always focused on the positive. It had never been frightening. She was sure voodoo had nothing to do with her mother’s death, but the doll in her hotel room upset her. Other than trying to scare her away, what could it possibly mean? Priestess Ava might be able to help her.
She walked through the store and the door into the church. A tall black woman wearing a long white dress with a white apron and a white scarf tied around her head, turned around when Julie Ann entered the room.
“Julie Ann Dupré, child, welcome.” She hurried across and wrapped her arms around Julie Ann. “I am so sorry to hear about your mother.”
“Thank you.” Julie Ann returned the hug and felt the energy flow from Priestess Ava. She soaked it in before she finally pulled back. “That’s what I wanted to talk to you about.”
“Your mother’s death? Of course, although I’m not sure how I can help. Shall we go and sit in the courtyard?”
“That would be nice.” Julie murmured. She liked it out there. Riots of red, orange, yellow, purple and coral colors filled the flower beds, attracting butterflies, birds and bees. Street noises never entered the area. It was an area of serenity and peace. And it always felt cool, despite the temperature.
“I found this in my hotel room this morning.” Julie Ann handed the voodoo doll to Ava.
Ava regarded it carefully before she touched it.
“This was in your hotel room?”
Julie Ann nodded.
“How did it get there?”
“I don’t know. The door and the window were both locked. When I touched it, I could see a group, not one person, but several and all very blurry.”
“I see. This is a voodoo doll, but not one of mine. Someone could have bought it from any of the local shops. It’s one made for tourists and then they added the blood. It’s a warning and meant to scare you.”
“It does scare me. I guess if I left all this alone, accepted the police report and went back to New York maybe I’d be safe.”
“That’s possible. It could be that’s what they hoped you would do when you got this.If you do leave New Orleans the people doing this might feel less threatened.”
“I can’t. For mom’s sake, I can’t let this be swept under the rug. I need answers and a motive. Besides, if the motive has something to do with her past or maybe about me, how can I be sure I’m safe even in New York? Do you know anything about my past?”
“No, Perrine never discussed it. It was obvious you were adopted but she never shared any information about your parents or where you came from. You are going to stay in New Orleans?”
“Yes, I’m staying at home. I’m hoping I might pick up something there or Perrine might talk to me.”
“You must be very careful. Many things in life don’t make sense. Stay open minded; listen to your spirits – Perrine may talk to you or send someone else.”
“I’ll try to be patient and careful. I hope someone will talk to me. When did you see Perrine last?”
“Actually, it was the day before she died. She dropped by for tea.”
“What did you talk about?”
“You, of course. She was so excited that you were coming home. She said she had a surprise for you.
“What was it?” Julie asked eagerly.
“I didn’t ask. I’m sure you’ll probably find out. Maybe she’d bought you a gift?”
“There was nothing in the house – unless that was what was stolen.”
“Ask some of her friends, maybe they know.”
“I will. Thank you.”
“Have you made any plans for the funeral yet?”
“No, I haven’t talked to her friends yet. Savannah mentioned Charlie wants to do it up in style and have an old-fashioned funeral with a band and a parade from the church to the cemetery.”
“That sounds wonderful. Perrine deserves it and the neighborhood will get a chance to mourn her in style. Good for Charlie.”
“I need to talk to him. Would you speak?”
“I’d be honored. Let me know when and where. Now I’m going to give you a special packet of mine. I want you to keep it on you at all times. It is to protect you against unknown threats and danger.” Ava slipped into the church and came back a few minutes later with a small ball wrapped in cotton muslin tied tightly at the top.
She held it over Julie Ann’s palm and mumbled a few words before she handed it to her. “Now put it in your pocket and keep it there. Keep it on you at all times, day or night. Promise me.”
“I will.” Julie Ann obeyed and stuffed it in her pocket. “Thanks, Ava. I don’t know that I need any protection, but I’ll be careful.”
“You take care now.” Ava gave Julie Ann a hug and watched her go.
Maybe I should have made the potion stronger. There’s an aura around her that says she’s going to have to face some life-threatening challenges.
I hope you enjoyed the excerpt. Now please check out these other authors and see what they have chosen to do for you.
Connie Vines http://mizging.blogspot.com/
Skye Taylor http://www.skye-writer.com/blogging_by_the_sea
Victoria Chatham http://www.victoriachatham.com
Marci Baun http://www.marcibaun.com/blog/
Dr. Bob Rich https://wp.me/p3Xihq-1Ng
Anne Stenhouse http://annestenhousenovelist.wordpress.com
A.J. Maguire http://ajmaguire.wordpress.com/
Fiona McGier http://www.fionamcgier.com/
Diane Bator http://dbator.blogspot.ca/
Rhobin L Courtright http://www.rhobincourtright.com