Friday, 15 April 2011
Author Spotlight week - Excerpt from Summer Love
Moderator's Note: Leave a comment on today's blog and a winner will be picked on Monday to receive a PDF copy of Linda's release, "Summer Love." Check this post on Monday for the winner. Be sure to leave a good email in case you win so I can get ahold of you.
Enjoy this excerpt of "Summer Love" by Linda Swift.
Amy fastened her hair into a neat ponytail as Paula completed her makeup.
"I hope you haven't neglected studying because of me. Everyone but you seemed to be spending an awful lot of time on class assignments."
"Let's just say I planned ahead," Paula said, knowing it was worth whatever it had cost her to have this weekend with her daughter.
"I wish Sharon could have gone with us," Amy said. "She's missing a great opportunity to be with Derek."
"I don't think she's interested in Derek," Paula said mildly.
"Well, she should be. He's a great guy."
"But he's old enough to be her father, honey."
"Well, Dad is dating someone that young."
Paula drew her breath in sharply. "He is?"
"Oh, I thought you knew. Haven't your friends--?"
"I'm not in touch with anyone back home," Paula said quietly and sat down on the closest bed, feeling as though she had just received another blow to her solar plexus. "Do you know -- who she is?"
"No, Mom. I don't know her name, and I don't think she's from Tuscumbia. I'm sure he met her through the band."
"Band? What band?" Paula asked faintly.
"Haven't you talked with Dad lately? The country-western band he plays guitar for."
"I didn't know... about that either."
"Well, neither did I until I went home to get my things. As Dad was driving by our house, he saw Chris' car so he stopped to talk with us." She shook her head. "He looked so... different."
"How do you mean?" Paula asked, dreading the answer.
"He was wearing faded Levis and a tee shirt with the band's logo and gold chains. His hair is a lot longer now, and he's grown a beard."
"I see." And she could see it all in her mind's eye. Quent changed into a man she didn't know, a hip musician who moved in a world that was totally alien to the life they had shared together. "And the... girl?"
"She was sitting in his convertible, and the top was down so we saw her clearly, but we didn't meet her."
What did she look like? Was she pretty? "Convertible?"
"Yes, a red BMW. And Dad just said she was a singer in the band. He seemed sort of embarrassed about it."
"Then maybe they're not--"
"Oh, yes, they are. I asked a couple of my friends who follow the band. And they said Bootsie was about my age, and they'd seen her out with Dad."
"That's her stage name, because her trademark is all the different boots she wears. But they didn't know her real name."
Amy crossed the room, put her arms around her mother. "Don't look so shocked, Mom. Chris says it's just a stage Dad's going through. He said he wouldn't be surprised if Dad came back to you when he gets it all out of his system."
"That isn't going to happen, honey," Paula told her sadly.
"I'm really sorry if I upset you, Mom. But I thought you already knew."
"I didn't. But it's okay." Paula made an effort to sound more cheerful. "And I'm glad I heard this from you instead of someone else. I'm sure the whole town knows about it."
"I guess so. Oh, Mom," Amy's voice was tearful, "I wish everything could be the way it was before..."
"Me, too, honey." Paula hugged her daughter closer. "But it can't be. So we have to make the best of the way things are."
"I know." Amy sniffed and wiped her cheek with the back of her hand. "And I'm proud of you for what you're doing. You have some really nice friends and you're different, too, but not in the silly way Dad is. I could never imagine you going out with a younger man."
Amy's words reminded Paula of Derek. "We should have been downstairs by now. Derek is probably double parked and wondering where we are."
Amy picked up her flight bag. "All set, Mom. Let's go."