Mad About You: A Preview

If you know me personally, you’ve possibly read this already, but for the rest of you, here is a small excerpt from a chapter of my novel. It’s rough since it has yet to be edited, but I was asked for a taste of the story, so I sincerely hope you enjoy.

Moonlight

    Samuel looked around as the memory began to take shape. In a nearby house to his right, a fluttering candlelit silhouette danced on the ceiling of the second floor with its bay window thrown wide, the sound of the familiar ‘Clair De Lune’ drifted down in light, sensuous patterns as the figure’s fingers worked over the keys of an unseen piano.

    Peter tapped him on the shoulder, and pointed in the direction of a couple crossing the street, Samuel knew this moment as well as the back of his hand, like most with Lilianna, it remained in full form in his mind, every nuance, and, like every moment spent with her, his heart felt equal parts hurt, and longing for a love so long ago lost. He damned himself silently for still wanting, as it was the single most destructive tempest of his life, yet the most raw wealth of emotion his heart had known.

    Lilianna, letting go of the young Samuel’s hand, removed her heels, set them down at the edge of the boardwalk, and began to dance in the wet sand, slowly, revolving in time with the figure playing DeBussy as the tide came in above her ankles, causing water to splash up and over her. As young Samuel watched, smiling at first, the older was reminded of how he had realized in that moment, that a woman like her would never give up the chase until it was far too late. Looking at her, as the trail of her wet dress and long, dark, wavy brunette hair seemed to shroud her glowing alabaster skin as she revolved, as beautiful and awe inspiring as the rising moon over the sea that was the backdrop to her stage. 

    He had wished for a distraction, for he had known that he would pursue her, forever if given the chance, and he would never catch her, she would never be his, save for when she fancied his company, though he had been her’s from the beginning. He had closely guarded the impulse to declare his love as best he could, sure that she would always choose to dance alone, she was bound to her gypsy-like whimsy, and afraid of the cage of which love could bind her by, her fear however, was unknown to him in these early years, had he known, the whole course of history may very well have changed. The younger Samuel smiled for her as she looked out toward him in an arching swoop of arms and legs, yet the tears that would soon surface, the terror, and the sadness of realizing all of this, were all he had felt.

    She made her way back to him, the older Samuel felt a maddening yearning that pulled at his chest, his face screwed up in disgust at himself. Soaked to the bone, she draped herself over the younger, nearly toppling them both. He had known that there would never be any compromise, because there had never been any before, they had done this for years by this point, she would leave when things became serious, coming back around when she felt it was safe, and easy. For having so much depth of soul, she had lived predominantly on the surface of all things. She had never liked talking about feelings, or the future save for her own. He’d had no idea at this point, whether she had loved him as completely as he did her, or if he was simply a fancy that she felt able to manipulate to her needs.

    “Don’t look at me like that, Samuel.” She looked up at him with harsh, scrutinizing eyes, eyes that melted every wall he had ever put up.

    “Like what? I don’t know what you mean.” Though, he had been quite sure what she meant.

    “I don’t know, you smile, but sadness covers your soul like a sheath, your eyes betray you, you know, they always have.” She unbuttoned the top of his shirt and laid her cold, damp hand on his chest.

    “I apologize, I didn’t realize.” Trying to change the subject, “where did you learn how to dance like that? It was beautiful.”

    She had always let him change the subject, “I took ballet when I was younger, before I found the violin. I still dance when the mood strikes, and I’d never danced to DeBussy, so…” She smiled, but in her eyes she was far away again, he had known what was coming next, “take me home, won’t you, Samuel?”

    “Of course,” his heart sank, “but, Lili darling, couldn’t you stay out awhile longer? We’ve only been out a few hours after all.”

    “I can’t, I’m leaving in the morning for New York.” Her eyes darkened.

    He couldn’t control the fury that had been building, she had done this too many times, “And you never thought to say anything to me until now?! You’ve practically just arrived, and now you’re leaving again, were you even going to tell me?! Honestly, Lilianna, what in God’s name do you even come back here for? What? Tell me what?” As the older watched this, he remembered how many times he had felt so hurt and angry by what he had perceived as a lack of courtesy, never thinking at the time that she had been afraid to let him in. He had wanted to shout his love for her, proclaim in anger that of which he had only ever wanted to make known in sweetness, but this would have only made matters worse.

    “I’ll just walk myself home, Samuel. Thank you for a wonderful night.” She picked up her heels and began to walk away.

    He had been defeated once more, after all, there was never any compromise. “No, Lili, dammit, no, I’ll take you. I’m sorry.”

    As the two walked on, becoming shadows, the older lowered his head.

    “She was a stubborn lass, eh?” Peter exclaimed.
    “The most, but she was right to walk away. I was a fool, I never understood…” Samuel trailed off, looking off in his lost love’s direction. “Are we done here? May we go?”

    “Aye, lets.” Peter grasped Samuel’s shoulder in a firm, friendly grip. As the memory faded, Samuel stopped and turned, watching as he and Lilianna rounded the corner, he had been battered and broken by grief for so many years over later events, that to feel a younger man’s longing, coupled with the memory of the emotionally crippling future that lay ahead of the young man rounding the corner, felt sickening, because, despite every betrayal that came to pass, and everything he had lost because of his love for Lilianna, he wanted nothing more than to run to her, to embrace her, feel that tangible electricity again, just once more. Having these feelings only served to push him a step back in what little progress he had made thus far, because his feelings for this woman were what had made it possible for him to hate everything about who he was, and all the morality he felt he lacked in never truly being faithful in his soul to anyone but her. He was a ruined man, and Samuel felt he deserved the eternal flames of hell, if not for anything but that. He turned back, sullen, and stepped through the open door as it came into view.

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3 thoughts on “Mad About You: A Preview

  1. Oh my goodness! I love this…It reminds me of my favourite book, ‘The Five People You Meet in Heaven’, by Mitch Albom. No idea if that’s anywhere near the direction it’s heading, but the prose and the implication so far make it feel similar 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, I’m glad you enjoyed it so much. I’ve never read that book, but from the synopsis I read on Amazon just a minute ago both of our books have elements that correspond with each other, definitely. There are some fundamentals to my story that I’m not too comfortable throwing out there yet that will hopefully be a large departure from his novel. I’m definitely going to have to read it now, seems like a great story.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I absolutely agree with that sentiment…keep that stuff to yourself. “Show don’t tell” 😉

        I’d definitely recommend it, Mitch Albom is a fantastic writer of lilting, dreamy prose that you can get lost in…much like your piece 🙂 Aside from the fantastic writing, the story is incredible…it’s one that stays with you.

        Liked by 1 person

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