Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Late


A few words from Savannah Martin, narrator of Jenna Bennett's Cutthroat Business mysteries. Book 4, Close to Home, will be released September 1st, in which Savannah has the following problem:  

When Rafe Collier came back from the dead, I was late.

Not the kind of late that mother always drummed into me is rude and inconsiderate, because it makes other people feel I don’t value their time or consider them as important as myself. In mother’s book of Southern etiquette, making someone wait is a sin of equal magnitude with eating dessert on a date or wearing white shoes after Labor Day.

I wasn’t that kind of late. In fact, if mother had realized what kind of late I was, she might well have disowned me.

Rafe wasn’t that kind of dead, either. I knew that. (Except for eight pretty bad hours when I’d thought he’d really died, before I realized it was all part of a big, elaborate hoax the Nashville PD and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation had cooked up.)

See, earlier this fall, someone had sent a contract killer named Jorge Pena after Rafe. Jorge was very good at his job—this was per Rafe, whose opinion I tended to trust on things like that—and when word came down from the Sweetwater sheriff that Rafe was dead, I’d believed it. It wasn’t until eight hours later—eight horrible, interminable hours—that I learned the truth: Rafe wasn’t dead, Jorge was. The powers that be (and they didn’t include Sheriff Satterfield in Sweetwater) had decided that Rafe should take Jorge’s place, to try to figure out who was paying Jorge to kill him. The fact that there was a slight resemblance between them—both tall, dark and dangerous—only helped with the illusion. Rafe had left Nashville for parts unknown—probably Memphis—six weeks ago, and I hadn't heard from him since. To add insult to injury, while he was away, I’d realized I was late.

As in, I should have gotten my period, and didn’t.

Yes, I was that kind of late. The kind that results in morning sickness and the pitter-patter of little feet.

And that begs the question: What do I do now? Take care of things before I have to tell anyone what I've done? Brazen it out until I can give the baby to someone else, someone with the courage I lack? Or keep it and stare down all the people of Sweetwater who'll whisper about how Margaret Anne Martin's perfect youngest daughter got herself in the family way by LaDonna Collier's good-for-nothing colored boy and didn't have the decency to take care of the problem before it brought shame on the whole family?

Quite the dilemma, isn't it? What would you do, if it was you?  

7 comments:

  1. No matter how hard it is at the time, one is never sorry later for being brave. But I second Dru; do what is in your heart, and what you think is the right thing.

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  2. Oh wow! Now I really can't wait to read this book!

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  3. Savannah, it's time for you to stand on your own two feet, girl. Stare those people down!

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  4. A decision only you can make...tough as it is. I saw pft! to the people of Sweetwater. Who needs em?

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  5. Thanks, everyone, for the help. I appreciate the input. I'll figure it out, I'm sure. :-)

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  6. This is a tough one. I am sure you will figure it out, but there's something to be said for doing the thing you know is right. Good luck. I'll have to read to find out what happens!

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