The words for Rosemary just keep piling up
So, another 2500 words on Rosemary today. This was a bit of a tough scene from a few days ago:
A good thing as Lily was in sleep shorts and a T-shirt. She eased shut the door and took in a deep breath of the muggy air. She walked quietly to the railing and watched the water swirl with underwater life for some time before slipping on her clogs. She strolled quietly along the railing, one hand trailing along the rough, sun-worn surface. The bumps of the nail heads felt good as they pulled against her skin.
Rounding the store, she stepped across the dirt parking area and onto the asphalt of the country lane, her cane trailing at her side. There were no streetlights here, so she walked in the dimness of a waxing quarter moon. She strode blindly in the center of the road, thoughts of despair roiling within her.
She’d known, since Birdie’s birth, that the Collective might reclaim her, but it had been a hidden thought, shoved somewhere deep into her subconscious. The thought didn’t bear thinking. Back then. Now, the day had come, and Lily was heartbroken. How could Flynn, who she’d come to see as a friend, or at least an ally, do this to her? To Hunter. Hunter, who had completely accepted Lily’s unorthodox family without question. Hunter who loved Birdie as much as her own birth mother.
Tears clouded Lily’s vision and she paused to swipe them away. The side of the road dipped close to the water there and she stepped to that side to peer into the depths, leaning heavily on her cane. Lacy trees on each side dipped night darkened branches down to kiss against the oddly sparkling water. Studying the branches, she thought how easy it would be to succumb. To just slide into the water and let it carry her away. She could return to nature and be done with missing Birdie. The idea, though appealing in many ways, terrified her.
Lily wrapped her free arm around herself and wept soundlessly. She knew wailing would only disrupt the normal night sounds surrounding her and she had no desire to do that. Tears would have to be enough.
She stood there for some time, trying to find the kernel of steel within her that she could use to fashion new purpose when her whole life had been demolished. She knew the strength was there. She had fostered its growth many times in her life. She took in a deep shuddering breath and dried her tears with the neck of her T-shirt. She’d have to be strong now, for Hunter, for Simmy and even for Theo. They’d all lost what was important to them and somehow Lily had to help all of them get past it. It was up to her now. She was the strongest. Letting the sluggish, thick water carry her away was a weakness she could not allow.
With new resolve, she turned to walk back to the bait shop. Suddenly, with lightning speed, something solid and heavy slammed into her weaker leg and hung on. Losing her balance, she crashed onto the rocky side of the road, her shoulder erupting with immediate pain as it forcefully encountered rocks and debris. She hadn’t even had time to use her arms to break her fall. Panicked, she tried to see what had hit her, immediately thinking alligator. She saw nothing at first but, looking toward the bayou, she spied a long thin tail disappearing into the water, a cloudy swirl marking its exit.
She painfully pushed herself to a sitting position and watched as a wide striped snake, with a long body as thick as her forearm, spiraled away across the water.
“Oh no,” she whispered. “Oh no.”
She knew she had to get help. Or did she? If she could find a more comfortable place to lie down, like that grassy patch she could see off to her left, well, maybe she could just allow it to happen. She wondered if there would be pain when the venom percolated through her system.
Oddly calm, she examined her calf to see if she could find the injury. Her shoulder screamed in pain every time she moved her arm. And then she saw it, a darker spot just below her knee. In the dimness, it looked like a bruise but drawing a finger across it, she felt a gush of fluid, whether blood or venom, leaking from it.
Would she die? The possibility seemed very real. Did she actually want to die? She didn’t know. She really didn’t. She thought of Hunter. And of their special relationship. She envisioned Hunter’s dark eyes, lovingly studying her. She thought of those eyes, swollen with tears and pain and she knew suddenly that she could not die. She would not, could not, be the cause of more pain.
Don’t worry–the rest of the book leans more to the positive side. The hybrid infant born at the end of The Liaison has grown up–sorta–and Hunter and Lily are having a hard time adjusting to raising a child who is half human and half IDB (Interdimensional being). Not to mention the sabotage happening at the ranch and dealing with the hateful Greys, those small threatening aliens who want the earth for their own. Will the gals be able to handle it all as they deal with their own grief and anger?
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