Huge thanks and acknowledgement to the hostess with the mostess, Sandra Bunino, for sponsoring the meme.
I’m working on a New Adult retelling of The Scarlet Letter set in a small town in NC. The heroine is home from college for the summer and runs into someone at her church she never expected to see again. First draft material so please excuse the rough edges.
“Mr. Hudson! Malcolm!” My mother’s voice rang out above the din of congregation members chatting with each other and with the various deacons and ministers. Common exclamations of, “Hot enough for ya,” peppered the babble. I felt my arm caught and tugged in the direction of the blond head that rose above all the others. Damn, he was tall.
“Hello, Mrs. Teague,” Malcolm said to my mother. I knew the second he recognized me because the color drained from his tanned face and he swallowed, hard, bobbing his Adam’s apple. “Uh, hello,” he said to me.
My own throat went as dry as three-day old cornbread. What were the odds? A million to one? I’d have been less surprised if God had struck me down with a bolt of lightning than to have seen this particular man again. He was no saint when I first met him a few months earlier. No ma’am. He’d been riding the sin wagon and cracking the whip to go even faster. How did I know? I’d been right up there riding it beside him! And now here he was, all holier than thou. Plus I’d have remembered a name like Malcolm. The douchebag had given me a fake name. Sure I’d told him mine was Beth, but at least mine hadn’t been a total lie. Big difference between Conall and Malcolm.
“Mr. Hudson, let me introduce you to my daughter, Elizabeth.”
“Malcolm,” he said, extending his hand to me. “Very nice to…uh…meet you, Elizabeth. Are you visiting from college?”
Had he emphasized the Beth part a little more than necessary? “It’s Lizzy. And I’m home just for the summer, yes.”
“No job yet,” my mother said with a ‘tsk’ at the end. “Times are hard, Malcolm, when even a talented young woman like my Lizzy can’t find a job. A three-point-five average so far, double-majoring in History and Journalism with a minor in music–”
“Mother! He doesn’t need to hear all that!” I so did not need her to recite my academic resume, and I especially did not need her mentioning my music minor, not to the Music Minister, even if he was just an intern.
Malcolm smiled at my mother–an expression that reeked of indulgence and patience reserved for the feeble-minded. Except my mother wasn’t even fifty and certainly wasn’t the least bit senile. Pushy and interfering, however, she paraded with pride. He shifted his gaze back to me, his eyes narrowed ever so slightly. “Perhaps we can persuade you to join the choir then?” He lifted his brows as if the idea my mother slapped him in the face with had organically occurred to him. Surely he was only being polite. Either that or he was looking for a repeat bit of business with me. As if. Sowing my wild oats in Chapel Hill was one thing. Doing it under my mother’s and all her old biddies’ noses was quite another. These women crucified for lesser offenses.
Now, mosey on over to some other blogs for more teasers!