For Always on Kobo

I have some exciting news. For Always is now available on Kobo, yay!!! Web CoverIt’s also available in Paperback, Kindle and Nook formats. To celebrate, I decided to post the Prologue. It’s a coming of age story that follows the characters over a four year period, starting in YA and ending in NA. So what do you think? Don’t forget to leave a comment!
 

Prologue

I entered the world with a massive defect. I attracted death. Like a magnet. I could feel it all around me. It wrapped its icy fingers tight around my chest, leaving me no room for escape. It enveloped me, draped over my shoulders like a heavy dark shroud.
 
The day I was born my cousin died in a car accident. Eight days after my birth, while holding me in her arms my mother’s mother closed her eyes, bowed her head, and breathed her last breath. At four years of age, while sleeping at her house, my mother’s sister suffered a cerebral hemorrhage caused by an aneurism.
 
The gurgling sound of retching woke me. I opened my eyes to see my aunt on the other side of the bed, eyes open and rolled to the back of her head, vomit oozing out of her mouth. I ran around the bed and brought the small garbage pail to her bedside. I shook her shoulder trying to wake her, to get her attention. She didn’t speak or move. I called my mother. And then I dialed 911.
 
I brought bad luck to all around me. Pets only reinforced my beliefs. Dogs died prematurely. One suffered a heart attack at only three years of age. Another suffered smoke inhalation.

*

The candle’s flame danced and burned on the kitchen table, hold¬ing me mesmerized in front of it. I’d been drinking water and spilled some. I reached for a paper towel on the other side of the candle to wipe up my mess.
The paper towel seemed to slice right through the orange, flicker¬ing flame. I never saw anything so amazing! As if it were a magic trick that needing perfecting, I tried it again and again and again, until I felt the scorching heat move with me and the smell of fire tickling my nose. I didn’t know what to do with the paper towel. It was burning so fast and the flame kept growing.
 
I looked around quickly wondering what to do. I had only an instant to decide. My mother lay on the living room couch, napping in front of the TV. I didn’t want to wake her, afraid she’d be mad I played with the candle. I threw the blazing paper into the plastic garbage pail next to the table.
 
The fire grew and now large flames shot out of the pail. I blew on the fire, trying to put it out like a birthday candle. It didn’t help. The smoke detector sounded, chiming in a steady rhythm of loud beeps, like an obnoxious car alarm.
 
I felt arms pick me up and spin me away from the shooting flames and melting pail. My mother screamed for me to get out of the house as she ran for the hose attached to the kitchen sink. I stood frozen in place. I couldn’t leave. I couldn’t leave her to die trying to fix my mistake.
 
Once the fire was under control Mom poured huge pots of water into the garbage, and eventually picked up the pail and placed it in the sink with continuous water running over it. We didn’t even look for Lucky, our five year old pug, until well after the fire had been extinguished. She hadn’t come out at all. Not to go for a walk. Not for a drink of water. Mom called Lucky. She didn’t move from her spot under the kitchen table.
Small dog, small lungs.
 
There were others, too. We had a gerbil, Frisky. I took Frisky out and held him in my hands, petting him gently with my pointer finger while my mother cleaned his tank. I held Frisky up near my nose.
 
“Who’s the sweetest little gerbil?” I asked.
 
Frisky, living up to his name liked to move a lot. I didn’t want to drop my squiggling ball of fur, so I tightened my grip just a bit.
 
Frisky bit me. I yelped as I dropped him on the floor. Mom, squea¬mish around him to begin with, panicked and dropped the twenty gallon glass tank squarely on him. Gerbil pancake.
 
The most devastating loss of all came at eight years old. My father left for work in the morning and never came back. He suffered a massive heart attack on the train. No pain. No warning.
 
The only constants in my life were my mother, my best friend Maria, who saw past my defect, and the great black cloud of despair that ruled my world. It was the only thing I could count on to never leave me alone.
Until Jordan changed my life.
 

 

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