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by B.K. Nault
Harold Donaldson unwillingly becomes the custodian of a beautiful, handcrafted kaleidoscope that
And now an excerpt!
She yanked off the scarf and dropped it into his lap, climbed up on the bench and began leaping from one bench to the next, her sandals slapping the concrete.
Harold was afraid she would slip and fall, and wondered whether he should first call someone, or check her for ABC’s if she did. But she jumped lightly, a sprite among the forest of potted birds of paradise. Airway, breathing, c...what was the C for?
“I’ve always wanted to do this! Haven’t you?” Where the benches were too far apart, Pepper scissor- kicked to the ground and danced. Harold could breathe as long as she was safely on the ground, her arms aloft, her body swaying. Then she would leap up again, the sun reflecting off bald spots between shags of spirally hair. And she laughed. Not a scary, maniacal sound, but a child-like whiffle that whisked Harold back to the elementary school when Edna Velasquez had tried to jump around the lunchroom but fell and broke her arm when she slipped in pudding. Harold was the only one Edna didn’t pester to sign her cast. Circulation. That was what C stood for.
Pepper collapsed next to him, panting, her caramel skin aglow. She was a china doll with kewpie lips and taffy-pulled earlobes. “That felt good, Harry.” She dabbed at her upper lip with the scarf, a tiny rattle in her breath. “You should dance more. We should all dance more.”
The warmth from her body awoke something in him that had long been dormant. Confused emotions tangled somewhere in his soul, and he met her gaze.
“What makes you dance, Harry? What stirs your soul?”
She’d dared to pull at the thread he’d buried underneath years of proving himself worthy, smart. Sane. “I find satisfaction in my work.”
“And what is that? No, wait. Let me guess. You’re a Pez-head designer. No, a sign spinner for discount plastic surgeons. I could use one of those by the way.”
He knew better than to acknowledge her cosmetic surgery remark. Honest answers to conversations beginning with “Am I pretty enough?” and “I’m thinking of getting work done” had never gone well with Georgia. “I’m a fraud investigator.”
About the author:
Bev's a graduate of Texas A&M University and is multi-published in both fiction and nonfiction. She's the co-author of the best selling and award winning, "Lessons from the Mountain, What I Learned from Erin Walton," with the actress Mary McDonough. A former business writer, she’s dabbled in many things from working as a theatre set dresser and props mistress to riding horses at pre-Olympic levels, judging for the Miss America/California pageants, and escorting her kids to work in Hollywood as professional extras. Married to her high school sweetheart, they've lived in two countries and 6 states, but promise they're not running from the law. A member of the RWA and ACFW, she also blogs, tweets and Pinterests when she’s not dreaming up new stories or planning a 'round the continent RV trip when said husband retires.
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