Happy Wednesday, friends! I hope all of you are having fabulous weeks so far. I'm taking some baby steps back into the world of fiction and am getting the next Kennedy Stern novel ready to publish this holiday season. Here's a scene I ended up taking out because it wasn't quite as realistic as I wanted. There are 9 paragraphs for the 9th month.
Carl slammed the gun on the counter and ran to Kennedy. “I am so sorry, sweetie. I didn’t mean to scare you like that.” She was rigid in his arms. She couldn’t bring herself to believe it was really all over. “I had to stall.” There was a pleading in Carl’s voice, but Kennedy didn’t want to listen to him. She didn’t want to do anything. She just wanted to pretend like none of this had every happened. Why couldn’t there be a reset button? She’d go back to her first week at Harvard, start everything all over. She wouldn’t have gotten involved in Carl and Sandy’s pregnancy center last fall, wouldn’t have gotten kidnapped, wouldn’t have had her pastor waving a gun in her face while a convict pressed his barrel into her back.
Or maybe she’d go back even farther. Change her mind about leaving Yanji in the first place. There must be online courses she could take from home, right? Who needed the Ivy League education if it got you murdered? Kennedy’s dad was right. The US was too dangerous for a girl her age to live on her own. She wanted to go home. Tears spilled down her cheeks.
“Carl, You let go of that poor girl right now.” Sandy’s voice was fierce. “You traumatized the little babe.” She held her arms out. Kennedy fell rather than ran to her. “See?” Sandy reprimanded. “She’s totally terrified now.”
“I needed to stall him,” Carl insisted.
Sandy made a little pshaw sound. “You want to make this girl stop trembling, you bring that contraption over here and show her.”
Carl picked the gun up from the counter and flipped it once in his hands. “See?” He smiled sheepishly. “It’s not real.” He held it out, but Kennedy refused to touch it. “Our grandson had a birthday party here last month,” he explained. “Some kid brought this over as a present. His mom thought it was too realistic, so it got ‘accidentally’ left it here.”
Kennedy’s eyes widened. “It’s fake?” She left her fingers brush the plastic.
“I was taking a gamble,” he said, “but with the power out, you could hardly tell the difference.”
“You couldn’t tell the difference,” Sandy corrected and swept a clump of Kennedy’s sweaty bangs off her forehead. “You know he really wouldn’t have hurt you, right?” She let out a little chuckle. “Poor thing. Probably thought your pastor had gone off the deep end.”
Blog Love: Big thanks to K. L. Schwengel for hosting the WIPpet Wednesday blog hop, where authors post snippets from their Works In Progress.
Random Fact: When I was a little girl, I had this strange fear that someone would shoot me with a gun through the phone lines and it would go right from the receiver into my head.