In honor of finishing a chapter and also getting my desk today (I can’t wait!) here is a snippet from the nameless WIP for you:
“I’d like to leave now,” she announced. “It was nice to meet you, Lisette.” She turned and stumbled down the trail, her head spinning. Her legs shook and she stumbled over a clump of grass. Her lungs were tight and she could barely breathe. Rounding a bend, she stopped and violently threw up.
She snapped straight and spun around to find Lisette’s father standing behind her. She wiped her mouth with the back of her hand, her stomach lurching again.
“I’m Lattimer Edwards,” he said, eyeing her warily. He’d been stung only a few times. “I want to thank you for helping my daughter. I owe you a debt.”
Her mouth tightened into a grimacing smile. Some thanks. Men holding her prisoner at gunpoint. Quite the Hallmark moment.
He seemed to read her mind. “We don’t cotton much to outsiders and we’re protective of our own. I— My kids are all I’ve got in the world. I have to protect them as I can. You understand.” There wasn’t a hint of apology in his tone; he was merely explaining a hard reality, one that wouldn’t bend for innocent women.
The truth was that she did understand. Or rather, she’d desperately wished for the same sentiment from her own father. He’d failed her abysmally. Understanding, however, didn’t excuse or justfy this man and his companions threatening her.
“Mr. Edwards, while I appreciate your inclination to thank me, I don’t particularly care for your variety of gratitude. So if you don’t mind, and even if you do, I’d just as soon go home and never see you again, especially not on the other end of a gun.”
Taryn swung around again and hadn’t gone but two steps before he spoke again.
“I’m afraid I can’t oblige you,” he said with an odd combination of pride and apology. “I’ve gotta pay my due when I owe it.”