I don’t know about you, but there is nothing going on, here, in June. All the spring festivals, dog shows, concerts, etc. have been canceled due to Covid19. In my area we are starting to open up, but very slowly. We’re still in Stage One. Parks and playgrounds are now open, hairdressers and barbers, and a few restaurants. That’s about it. In my city we have been very lucky and have had a total of 40 cases and no deaths. But for our long holiday weekend, Stage One, they pushed ‘camping at home’, with tents in the back yard and RV’s in the driveway. Now, for the summer, they’re pushing and putting money into ‘Holiday at Home.’ We’ll see how that works.
Me, I bought some backyard patio furniture and have my small garden planted. Our weather is warming up. My rescue dog is adjusting and enjoys laying on a small plot of artificial grass. And I’m getting names of books I have to read. We’re all set for our ‘Summer at Home’.
Death Southern Style has been through two rounds of editings and revisions. It’s now with two beta readers. Unfortunately, one of my beta readers lives in Brooklyn.
She’s been through two months of the corona virus and shelter-at-home and listening to sirens all day long. As the sirens began to lessen, she is now only blocks from the riots that have started. Her mental health and worry about her family are affecting her and she may not be able to continue to read.
As soon as I get the book back with comments it goes for formatting. I’m hoping to have it up for sale by July 1st. It will get there. So, for now, I’m in limbo with Death Southern Style. Everything is in someone else’s control. Sigh… I’m working on a pre-order date. Once I get one, I’ll add it to my website.
In the meantime, check out:
Nicole Morgan’s Red Carpet https://www.redcarpetfiction.com/bookbub-june-2020 - Current Giveaways June 8th – June 30th Enter to win an amazon gift card
And Father’s Day at N.N. Light https://www.nnlightsbookheaven.com/ June – June 18-21 Celebrate Fathers Event with an e-book bundle giveaway.
I have continued writing 100 words a day. I joined a ‘100 words a day’ group so I have accountability. I’m working on The Foundation Lydia’s Story, the second in the series, which I’ve mentioned before. I’m about one third of the way through it. I need to reread it and work out some structure and plot details and do some more research on Peru.
Since I’m working On Lydia’s story, here’s an excerpt (draft).
The woman nodded.
“I'm Maggie. The woman behind you is Sara. We're here to help you escape.”
Marilyn's eyes widened. She swung around to see Sara, dressed as another female repair person, in the kitchen doorway.
She swallowed several times, her hands clutched together. “I don't understand. You have to go. My husband could be home soon.”
“We know, Marilyn. Diane, one of our team is watching for any sign of him. We also know that when he comes home today, he's going to beat you within an inch of your life. He may not stop there this time. We know he's been abusing you for years. We're here to get you out and away from him. We want to save your life.”
“You can't...I can't...” she looked down at her ankle. She wore a monitoring device. “If you cut it off, he'll know. He monitors it from work. If he notices anything unusual, he phones. If I step outside the house, he'll know. You can't save me.”
Maggie pulled out a pair of metal cutters. “We know about your monitor. No man should put something like that on anyone, except maybe an alleged pedophile or murderer, released into the community. It should never to be used on any woman, including a wife. We can take care of it. Sara?”
Sara slipped into the room and pull out a six-inch piece of wire with hooks and little black boxes on it. She bent down and attached it to the monitoring device. Several minutes later she pulled at both ends. She gave a curt nod to Maggie and held out her hand. Maggie handed her the cutters.
“No, don't. He will know right away and come home and kill me.”
“Hold on, Marilyn. It will be fine. We know what we’re doing. Think about what you need to bring with you. You can only take a very small bag.”
Marilyn held her breath. Sara cut through the bracelet.
Marilyn stared at Sara and then at Maggie. “It didn't go off. He didn’t hear it?”
“No. We do know what we're doing.”
Marilyn stared at the phone.
“He’s not going to call. Slip your foot out of the bracelet. We don't have much time. I'll carry the monitor while you pack. Don't worry about clothes or jewelry. We'll replace anything you’ll need.” Maggie looked at the thread-bare cotton housedress. “Take the few things you can't live without.”
Marilyn stumbled upstairs into the master bedroom. She dragged a stool to the closet door. She opened the door and climbed up on the stool. In the back corner she jerked out some sheets and threw them on the floor. She pulled out another sheet with something in it. She gently unwrapped the sheet and brought out a small rectangular wood box. She clutched it to her chest
“He doesn't know about this. He doesn’t let me keep anything from my family or my life before he married me.”
“Bring it along. Is there anything else?” Maggie said.
“I have my thyroid medication.”
Maggie paused. “Take a few pills, leave the bottle. Is there anything else?”
Marilyn shook her head. “No, I don't want to remember anything about my living hell for the last ten years.”
"That's why we're here, so you can leave this hell and move on with your life. We'll get you a new identity. He will never find you. You're going to be free."
“I don't believe it can happen. I've been praying for it for years.”
“Someone heard your prayers. Let's go.” Sara grabbed Marilyn's thin arm. “Do you get any food?”
“He eats his lunch out or orders it in. He brings groceries home every night so I can cook for him. I get anything that's left over. There's food in the fridge for his breakfast. He counts the eggs and bread slices, but I can manage to steal a little orange juice and jam.”
Sara shook her head. “If I had my way we'd stay here and take care of that bastard when he gets home.”
Maggie put her arm around Marilyn's shoulders. She shot a glance across at Sara. “Down girl, that’s not our assignment this time. You can always ask to come back.”
Maggie pulled out her phone from the tool belt. “Lydia, meet us in the alley out back. Come on, Marilyn, you're out of here.”
Sara slipped out of the room and returned seconds later. “I dropped the monitor on the bed. If he monitors her movements, he'll think she's lying down.” She moved to the back door and opened it.
“I don't see anyone. No neighbors in their yard, although we should thank one of them for telling us about you. Give me your box. Let's go.” Sara grabbed the wooden box from Marilyn and sprinted across the yard.
Maggie kept her arm around Marilyn and guided her through the yard, through the gate and into the alley. The telephone repair van pulled up with Sara inside. She leaned out and helped Maggie hoist Marilyn through the sliding side door and into the van. Maggie hopped inside and pulled the door shut. “Go, Lydia.”
The van drove slowly down the alley. It turned right, onto the main street and slowed to a stop. Diane climbed down the pole and raced across the van. She climbed in the passenger seat and the van’s speed increased but stayed under the speed limit. Lydia drove toward the freeway. They couldn't afford to be stopped. They needed to get the woman to the safe house. Her husband would be home in a few hours and looking for her. They had to assure her safety and quickly.
He would not be happy to find his possession gone.