This is the PROLOGUE from my new novel A Fine Pursuit, releasing November 1st…
Noah stands on the periphery observing the chaos. He vaguely sees two people warring and yet his own mental conflict rages louder. Something is mixing with the blood and adrenalin pumping around his body – but he refuses to be provoked. He feels dizzy and out of control; sick with a sense of terrible foreboding. He is paralysed by an innate and dreadful fear.
The memory dissipates and he is somewhere else, far, far away from that scene. He has her in his arms. He takes a deep, satisfying breath of her hair and holds her close. The peace she affords him obliterates all those reminders of the ordeal. The woman he loves feels so soft and gentle against his much larger, harder body. She nuzzles her nose in his chest and waves of joy flow through his heart and stomach so that nothing hurts, no bad ever happened. The daily struggle to avoid his torment has been completely eradicated.
He blinks. Then in a mere moment, he is back in the cavernous depths of his subconscious mind. He suffers anguish beyond anything the ordinary man may experience throughout an entire lifetime. His large frame trembles with unforgiving loathing and he has no control again. His impulses are a menace. They wage a war against the educated man inside him that wants to break the pattern and be something better, something healthier and more wholesome. He just never managed it.
He hears the smash of bones and sees the twisted neck of the person at his feet. Her eyes are wide open, bloodshot, yet lifeless.
A voice echoing inside his head taunts him: You are responsible.
Noah wakes up in a cold sweat, bolting up out of bed. He knows only that he feels numb and the crushing, strangulating desolation is hard to break free of. It was a dream, just a dream. He falls back down in bed, curling into a ball, and wishes Charlotte were with him. Ever since she left, he has been alone, tormented and reminded.
He undid her; she undid him.
Though she might be surviving, he is slowly falling into the pits of despair.
A FINE PROFESSION (the first of the chambermaid’s tales) IS CURRENTLY ON SALE…