August 20, 2013 by Jen Cudmore
Today I decided to post a little teaser for you from my next novel, Willow Ridge, due out in the spring. Enjoy!
Barrett groaned, twisting onto his side to shove his face against the pillow. It had only been a dream, nothing more. Slowly his heart eased to a normal pace. Moisture gathered in his eyes. Watching Falina die again was sheer torture. He swallowed. He couldn’t cry in front of his mother.
She smoothed the thick hair on his neck. “You’re sweating.”
“I’m fine.” Barrett flipped back the covers and thrust his feet over the side of the bed.
“Are you going somewhere?” she asked when he slipped on his pants.
“I can’t bear this anymore. I’ve got to do something, Mama.”
“Si, but at this hour? What could you possibly do?”
Barrett yanked a shirt over his head. “I won’t be long.”
“Do you delight in making me worry? That is all you and your hermanos have done for years. It’s a wonder you are not all in jail.” Her fingers tapped a cross over her torso.
“I’ve learned my lesson, Mama.” Barrett raised the lantern she’d set on the table beside his bed, casting an orange glow across her face. “There’s just one more thing I gotta do.”
“You must let it go.” She shook her head, worry on her features, still beautiful despite her years. “No more hatred. No more killing. I know you loved her, but you’ve had justice for Falina. She wouldn’t want you to put yourself in any more danger.”
“It’s not justice I seek.” He forced down the lump in his throat. “It’s peace.”
Hurrying down the dark street, Barrett kept his eyes on the dusty road until he finally reached his destination – a two story building fashioned of red brick and stucco. He rushed over the steps and shoved open the door, relieved to find it unlocked. He didn’t know the right answer. Perhaps he could find it here.
Several candles sent flickering light across the front half of the building. Barrett surged past the wooden pews and dropped to his knees at the table full of candles resting under the shadow of a large wooden cross. The lantern he’d carried clattered to the floor beside him. He flung his face into his hands, closed his eyes against the tears, and lowered his forehead to the top of the three steps.
“Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned.”
©Jen Cudmore 2013, All Rights Reserved
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