I live! Yes, I live! :)
Recently, I received word that there has been some concern about my welfare. And in turn, whether or not Walking in Shadow would ever be published. I have surfaced to let everyone know that YES, I am well...and YES, Walking in Shadow will be published. Unfortunately, as you know, I'm far behind schedule with it...and unfortunately, it will be a while longer before it's ready to hit the airwaves and go live. There are a myriad of reasons, but I won't offer any excuses. I'm struggling with it. Alas, the good news is that I'm beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
I can't tell you how excited I am for everyone to read it. I won't make any promises about a release date (boy did I learn my lesson about that the last time), but I wanted to let all of you know that it's coming, albeit slowly -- It's COMING. I apologize for the wait; I know it sucks. I've been there as a reader and I would want to throttle an author for missing a promised publication date.
Again, I'm sorry.
I really hope y'all can hang in there with me.
For now, here's a teeny tiny snip -- It may or may not end up in the actual book, but that's yet to be seen. :)
WALKING IN SHADOW
Ty’s window appeared dark from a distance, but as I drew near, I made out a weak light coming from behind his curtains.
There wasn’t much cover in his yard. I settled for a spot just inside the tree line and hunched down beside the trunk of a maple. The sky held only the faintest light from the setting sun, and the encroaching darkness would provide more than enough cover.
I settled into the spot and closed my eyes, focusing hard on the house before me—trying to pluck out the various sounds from within. To decipher and catalog them. Silly as it was, I imagined a periscope in my mind. One I could use to locate and focus on different things.
I did a sweep of the house, first locating Ty’s mother in the kitchen. There came with her the clatter of cutlery and dishes. I quickly decided she was cleaning up after their evening meal. No real guess work in that since I could see her pass by the kitchen windows.
Score zero for me.
Using her location, I focused on other parts of the house.
A sheen of perspiration broke out across my forehead. I wiped it away with the sleeve of my coat. This was harder than I anticipated, and it was only after several minutes of fierce concentration that I was able to push past the noises Mrs. O’Neill was making to other parts of their house. At last, I picked up what sounded like the slow crackle of pages being turned. The faint creak of…
Just then, Mrs. O’Neill dropped something in the kitchen and my concentration broke.
Swearing under my breath, I dug my fingernails into my palms and once again tried to push past her. This time I was able to focus again on the turning pages and stay there. Along with that, I heard the deep breathing of a male and the minute shifting of…leather. Someone was sitting in a leather chair. That was the creaking I heard.
Mr. O’Neill, likely working from home.
I exhaled and pulled back, surprised by how exhausted this one small feat had left me. A headache pounded at my temples; I took a few even breaths before beginning the next leg of my experiment.
Glancing up at Ty’s window, I grimaced. To say I felt shitty about spying on his parents would be putting it mildly. Spying on Ty himself was pushing past my moral limit. I reminded myself that this would be for his own good. A mild reassurance at best.
Before I could back out, I closed my eyes and concentrated on his room.
Please God, don’t let him being doing anything I can’t handle knowing about.
It was easier to focus without other people between us, their sounds bleeding into his. There was a soft thumping noise coming from his room. Evenly spaced, cushioned. I glanced up at his window, hoping to catch a glimpse of him as he paced back and forth. No such luck. The curtains shielded him from view.
He was agitated about something. He always paced when he had things on his mind. Unfortunately, I had a sinking feeling that I was the source of said agitation.
I don’t know what I hoped to discover by listening to him, but I found the sounds of him moving around up there soothing. If I expected him to phone Melanie, or vice versa—which, honestly, I had sort of hoped he would so I could listen in, even if it was only a one-sided conversation—I was disappointed. His phone didn’t ring and he made no move to call anyone.
The only thing that showed promise was when he suddenly stomped over to the window and drew back his curtains with a soft rustle. From where I sat I had a clear view of him. I crouched low to the ground and held my breath. There was no way he wouldn't be able to see me from that vantage point.
After no sirens went off, I dared to look up.
Ty stood staring toward my bedroom window, his lips turned down in a frown. After a moment, the curtains dropped back into place and he resumed pacing, his steps quicker now.
Just before I turned to move back towards my house, I heard him mutter two small words under his breath.