In late spring this year I finally made a decision. I had been trying to edit one half of my novel with little success. I had to admit the story just did not work for me anymore and that it was not captivating enough, a feeling corroborated by some literary agents and beta readers. So I started from scratch again, keeping the same names for the main characters and some elements that in my eyes did work.
This is a first draft. As always, your comments and suggestions are precious and very welcome.
HALE – UK
The set of little bells jingled softly. Kathleen exhaled deeply, her eyes closed. She opened them to look at the younger woman in front of her:
“How are you feeling?“
Both of them were sitting cross-legged on brightly coloured, comfortable cushions disposed on the walnut wooden floor. The woman looked down at the metal bowls arranged in front of her, the smaller ones filled with water; the movement brought her long, straight blond hair forward, veiling her face. She was hesitant, clearly struggling with the turmoil of emotions inside her. Kathleen gently reached out, putting her hand on her wrist:
“It’s OK. You need to process all these feelings, just take your time.”
The healer got up in one graceful movement and unpinned her hair, letting her gorgeous dark auburn curls cascade down her back. She then reached towards the ceiling with both arms, her fingers locked, palms facing up, slowly moving her head from one side to another. Her client was still on the floor. Kathleen dropped her hands and donned pretty embroidered slippers. “Tea would be a good idea,” she thought. She started to leave the sunny room, its large French windows opening onto a lush garden. At that moment, the blond woman started to sob.
Kathleen felt their presence before she even heard them. She turned in her brass double bed to face away from the door, pretending to still be asleep, and smiled. The giggles had started, the two little girls desperately trying to muffle them. Sliding more than crawling on the bleached wooden boards, they finally reached their target: The Nepalese hand woven rug with its intricate turquoise and brown design that their Mum had brought back from her last trip. They settled on it for less than a minute before starting to creep onto the bed. Kathleen waited until the twins were both on the mattress before she sprung around, shouting:
There was a sharp intake of breath from both Meghan and Ness before they collapsed into their Mum’s arms, saying in unison:
“Mummy, you scared us!”
“Did I, now… That will teach you for waking me up early on a Sunday morning,” Kathleen replied, winking at them.
” I think it’s late, not early,” said Meghan seriously, “Ness and I are really hungry and look at the sun.”
She was pointing through the window. Kathleen frowned and grabbed her alarm clock: 9:20! It had happened again: The long, deep sleep full of vivid dreams. She declared:
“You’re absolutely right, it’s more than time to get up and go on a new adventure! But first, breakfast; I cannot wait to taste the funny bread rolls we made yesterday. The frog was yours Ness, correct?”
Ness nodded enthusiastically, beaming.
“Then the hedgehog is yours Meghan and I have… the octopus!”
With these words she reached towards her daughters, fingers undulating like tentacles, and tickled them until they begged for mercy. Kathleen then slipped a soft cardigan over her nightie, the girls waiting for her. Holding hands, they made their way downstairs.