It's Friday!! Here's where you can link up to join the Christian Fiction Friday blog tour. Since this is now the fifth month, I've included five paragraphs from Ko's story.
Ko kept her eyes on her half-empty plate and thought about the little marionette show she went to the summer before her family moved. Woong had squealed with delight when the puppeteer made two of the characters fight. Such entertainment had never made its way to their tiny hamlet before. Woong squirmed in her lap, and Ko watched transfixed, as enraptured with the wooden figurines as her brother. They stayed after the show to watch the performers pack the dolls away in their traveling cases, and a strange heaviness clouded over the joy and splendor of the show. How sad to be a creature so full of life, so full of grace, yet tied down by so many strings. Strings controlled by someone invisible. Invisible, omnipotent, inescapable. It wasn't right.
“And she has such a common face,” Mama was clucking. “What with the neighbors think of her putting on such airs?" Mama made a fool of herself for several more minutes, even imploring Papa to convince Ryuk to take the present back, but eventually the scarf was tucked back into its box and placed under Ko's chair.
"You watch her now," Mama said to nobody in particular, "and see if she doesn't spill that sauce and spoil the whole thing." Mama gave Ko's shin a swift kick under the table, and Ko straightened her back.
"Yes, comrade. The gift is remarkably beautiful. Breathtaking even."
For the first time since dinner started, Mama's mouth shut. Ko's cheeks flushed when she sensed Ryuk's warm smile. Suddenly flustered, she glanced at Papa, who answered with a tender gaze, soft and quiet, the gentle wrinkles around his eyes rippling like a dozen streams. She lowered her face toward her plate. For several minutes there was no talking, no meaningless chitchat. Just the scraping of forks on plates, the chewing of meat that tasted so foreign to Ko’s palate and sat like a stone in her gut.
FYI: My next novel, Unplanned, releases this coming Wednesday!! You can pre-order your own copy on amazon for $2.99 before the price goes up.