In honor of being good and also some very special people I will talk about later, today I will be sharing an excerpt from my WIP.
Why yes, yes it is!
Note: This is a scene from the unrevised manuscript.
The two characters who are speaking are my protagonists, Nikola (aka Lord Bysshe) and Lenore.
Just to set the scene, they are at:
And so under the hawk-like glower of the Duke, Lenore placed her hand in Lord Bysshe’s.
“Wonderful,” Lord Bysshe said and handed the flute to her cousin. “Hold this for me, if you will.”
Before he could protest, Lord Bysshe and Lenore were making their way onto the ballroom floor.
When they took their spot amidst other couples, she turned her attention to the gentleman in front of her. He was a head taller than her, his hair and eyes were a rich brown of freshly plowed earth or strongly brewed tea, depending on how the light hit them, and he had a dangerous kind of a smile that stuck in the crevices of a memory long after it was gone.
“I’m not very good at waltzing,” she said.
“Not to worry, Lady Lenore,” he answered, straightening up. “I’m not either.”
Then they started dancing. At first, Lenore was reluctant with her steps, mindful of the way Lord Bysshe led her across the floor, but as the soft, rhythmic melody filled the room and spun it around, she fell into step with it.
Contrary to his words, Lord Bysshe turned out to be a decent waltzer. She said as much, once she was sure she could talk without tripping over her gown.
Lord Bysshe’s attention snapped back to her. It seemed as if he had been searching for somebody in the crowd. “Pardon me?”
“You dance well,” she said, trying to make her voice heard over the swelling music.
He smiled convivially. “You say that now but wait until I step on your foot.”
She smiled too.
Then he cleared his throat and said, “May I ask why you let the children go, at the station?”
The question was so unexpected that Lenore ended up stepping on his foot. They almost collided with the couple next to them.
Waltzing was an exact science and it didn’t like missteps.
“Ah, now you see my tendency to ruin waltzes,” Lord Bysshe said, righting her. “My apologies.”
“No, it was my fault.” She tried to still her heart and get back into rhythm. “But how did you know? About the children?”
“I returned to North Étoile yesterday morning and it was difficult not to notice.”
“Oh. I, well, I felt bad for them.” She clearly remembered the tears in their sooty shirts and their bruised knees.
His lips twitched as if he wanted to laugh.
“You think it was foolish.”
“I don’t.” He shook his head but there was a glint in his eyes that said otherwise.
“I know kindness is a naive concept for many,” she started.
“No, not naive.” He pondered his words for a moment. “I think it just demands more than most people are willing to give.”
Lenore turned the words over in her mind. “Very profound.”
And they kept on talking and dancing.
So I decided to share this with all of you because today I was reminded just how very kind people can be, when they are willing to give a little more than others.
Here is what happened. Today my mom donated to a farm sanctuary in Ukraine because they were struggling with sustaining their animals, which include cats, dogs, horses, cows, goats and more. They’re all amazing animals rescued from the streets, abusive homes, neglected farms, and slaughterhouses and because not many people in Ukraine can or are willing to donate, this sanctuary needs all the help they can get.
It was so very kind of her to do and since I don’t have any money of my own yet (hello, unpublished writer here), I thought I’d share the news with all of you, in hopes that there will be someone out there, who decides that today is their day to be good.
If that’s you, go to Shelter Ugolyok and see the animals. At that point, if you’re still feeling generous, donate whatever you can to the sanctuary’s PayPal (their email is firstname.lastname@example.org) or GoFundMe page. And if you’re like me (aka penniless), please share far and wide, so together we can reach those who aren’t.
Remember, kindness isn’t naive, it just demands more than some people are willing to give.