And as a "thank you", I'm also sharing a new blurb from my new novel, Captivate Me. This is when Kat calls home to talk to her family. I chose this scene because when I think of Thanksgiving, I think of my love for my family.
I wish you all a warm and happy day tomorrow.
EXCERPT: CHAPTER FOUR - Footsteps and Flowers
I’d finished painting my admirer and part of the twinkling night sky before I decided to call it a morning. Lunch would be here soon, and I needed to get ready. As I washed and dressed, I realized I needed to call my parents. I had told them I would call again this weekend. I also wanted to ask my dad about his dreams; mine seemed too real lately to be coincidental.
The phone rang only once, and my dad answered in his familiar Irish accent.
“You knew I would call today?” I beamed.
He laughed a heartfelt laugh. “Actually, I didn’t. I just had the phone here beside me while I painted.”
I glanced at my painting with fondness. “I just finished painting, too.”
“That’s my girl. So how has your weekend been?”
“Good… went and got a dress yesterday and played a ping pong match last night.” I also went into the woods and met an invisible stranger who I think has been stalking me.
“Still a force to be reckoned with?”
We lapsed into silence.
“What’s up, princess? I can hear it in your tone today. Somethin’s up.”
“I’m okay,” I replied but halfway wondered if he had seen something in his dreams; my tone was fine. I think.
He paused, waiting to get it out of me.
Or maybe it was our connection that had told on me; we’d always had one – finishing each other’s sentences, knowing when something was ‘off’ with the other. The day I used my gift to close my locker at my old school and the rumors started swirling, he called me on my cell as I bawled in the bathroom. He hadn’t dreamt it; he just knew something wasn’t quite right. I guess you could call it our sixth sense.
I caved. “There was one thing I wanted to ask,” I said, cutting my eyes back at the boy in my painting.
He chuckled. “Go ahead.”
“How can you tell the difference between a normal dream and a prophetic dream?”
“Well…” He coughed as he contemplated his answer. I’d caught him off guard. “I guess sometimes I can’t tell until it comes to fruition. But there is an element of realness, if that makes sense. I’ll wake up and it will take a minute for reality to seep back in. It’s hard to tell which is which sometimes.” He paused for a beat. “Why?”
Sounds familiar. “Just wondering.”
I couldn’t tell if it was fear or excitement that laced his words. “You been havin’ weird dreams lately?”
This part I wasn’t sure of. The last thing I wanted to tell him was that my dreams were of a gorgeous boy. Awkward! “You could say that.”
“Does it have anyone in particular in it?” he probed.
Gah! I now second guessed my decision in asking him this at all.
“I’ll take your silence as a yes,” he chuckled. “You know…” he mused, his voice trailing, “I dreamt of your mother before we ever met.”
My heart stopped, and I’m pretty sure the floor was spinning beneath me. I plopped onto the edge of the bed. What?!
“But don’t you be worryin’ about boys,” he added.
I nodded numbly.
I’d found my voice. “Okay, dad,” I lied. That’s all I would think about now. Had I been dreaming of this boy for a reason? Did I inherit my dad’s gift of prophecy?
My mom’s voice trilled in the background along with the rustling of plastic bags. Sundays were her grocery shopping days. “Is that Kat?”
“Bye, princess,” he said, knowing resistance was futile in handing the phone over to my mom. She’d wrestle it from him if she had to.
“Bye! Love you bunches.”
“Love you bunches.”
“She doing good?” she asked before he’d even handed her the phone.
“Yes, my angel,” he replied, and I gagged internally as I heard them smooching their “hellos”. They probably hadn’t seen each other for a whole entire hour. My parents – still hopelessly in love after all these years.
“Hello, dear,” she said as she finally brought the phone to her ear.
“You find a dress yesterday?”
“I did… its beautiful!”
“It’s a pretty black, though, with silver iridescent in it. And it’s strapless.”
“Some strappy black heels. I bought a necklace, too.”
“I’ve taught you well,” she said with a chuckle. “You’ll take lots of pictures?”
A familiar groaning voice echoed in the background – a newly wakened Sam. He was probably shuffling toward the kitchen table with a box of cereal in one hand and the biggest bowl he could find in the other. Thinking of my brother, my eyes welled – a new trend lately when calling home and it had only been two weeks.
“Kat’s on the phone,” my mom informed him.
“Kat?” The sound of his voice flooded me with warmth. My sweet, sweet Sam.
“Bye, love,” she said. Resistance was just as futile with my brother. We had always been inseparable… well, until we had to separate when I came here.
He started as soon as the phone met his ear. “Kat, you’ll never believe what Tinkles did last night!”
Tinkles – my fourteen-year-old cat that actually looked a four-hundred-year-old cat with its mangy coat and foggy blind left eye. But I loved him, and Sam had promised to take good care of him while I was away. I prayed the night before I left that God would keep him alive for me until I returned; he’d been having trouble walking lately. And as to why I’d named him Tinkles, I honestly don’t remember. The imagination of a three-year-old is an enigma. Or maybe I’d seen him tinkle one day and thought it was funny.
“I’m surprised he did anything,” I teased.
“I know! But he jumped all the way up onto your bed and slept on your pillow the entire night. He wouldn’t let any of us move him.”
More tears filled my eyes and one slid down my cheek.
“I guess he misses you!”
“I guess so,” I managed. I then contemplated asking to go home – the home-sick ache in my heart had grown to an unbearable size – but the thought left as quickly as it came. I liked it here with my new friends and Levi and the other ‘recent developments’. I’d miss it here, too.
I glanced at the clock. Twelve minutes until lunch.
“Well give him a kiss for me,” I said, swiping the trail of the tear away, “I need to get going.”
“Love you to the moon and back.”
His voice cracked. “You too. To the moon and back.”
“And tell mom and dad I love them again for me. I’ll call soon.”