Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Shine by Jeri Smith-Ready, teaser week 2

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Our hands lay a few inches apart on the balcony’s cold stone railing, but the distance might as well have been a few miles. That’s how hard it would be to join them. Because of what lay beyond.
But I spread my fingers wider, and he did the same, until the tip of my right pinky and the tip of his left pinky almost brushed. Almost.
The thick Irish mist seemed to fill my lungs, drowning me in fear and anticipation. I wasn’t sure what would kill me faster—touching Zachary or not touching him.
"Are y’hungry?" he finally asked in a low voice.
"No," I whispered, not looking up.

"Uh, yeah. No. I don’t know. Maybe." I risked a glance at him. "What’s there to drink?"

"Water from the tap?" He gave a short, hoarse laugh. "I dunno why I’m acting like a waiter."

I smiled, but looked away, down at the River Boyne, wishing it could lend me some of its silent silver serenity. "I don’t know, either."

"I suppose, now that you’re in my part of the world, it feels like you’re my guest, and I want to make you, em..."



I summoned every scrap of courage and turned to face him full on. "You do. You always..." My voice trailed off, because I’d run out of breath.
"Aura." Zachary drew his top lip between his teeth, then spoke to the stone surface just beyond my feet. "I’ve tried to think of what I’d say and what I’d do right now. How I could make it everything you want." With each quickening blink, his eyes shifted, never leaving the ground. "But then, I started to think it would never happen, that I’d never even see you again. And then every time I turned my mind to this moment, it went blank." His lashes lifted to let his gaze meet mine. "I couldn’t imagine a future that would be so kind to us."

My eyes burned with tears—of anger as much as sorrow or love. Whatever those bastards had done to him, the one thing I’d never forgive was the haunted look they’d put in his eyes.
"So I’m sorry," he continued, "if I’m no’ quite the most, em, smooth person when it comes to these things. I never did sort out what to say and do, how to get from here—" He pointed to the space between our feet. "—to there." He gestured behind him, toward the door, but at an angle. Toward the bed.
I took a shaky step forward, so that we almost touched. "You’re not the only one who can sort stuff out."

*Note, all teasers posted here were copied from the authors blog. They are the sole property of the author.

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