Happy (Belated) Valentine’s Day!

Author’s Note: In honor of Valentine’s Day (and the glorious blog hop hosted by Heather Webb), here’s a retelling of one of my scenes from London Streets– A Love Story. Comment and enjoy!

***

He walks over, “What’ll you have?”

“The strongest shit you’ve got,” I say. My hands are still shaking.

He moves behind the bar– no more questions, no raised eyebrows. I look up for the first time since walking in: tall. dark hair, crew cut. He looks at me and– blue eyes. Wow. I hear the glass thunk on the counter; neither one of us watch to see if it’s landed on the coaster.

“What is it that you’re running away from?” He asks.

“I thought Brits had better grammar than Americans. Don’t you know you’re not supposed to end your sentences with a preposition?”

He just smiles quietly without showing any teeth. “That’s an incredibly nice defense mechanism you got there. You alright?”

I shake my head. It’s too soon. Not now. I have suddenly taken great interest in my drink. Not bad– strong.

“You’ve got a nice battle scar there,” he says, pointing to the hand that’s holding the glass. The skin on my knuckle is cracked and chapped. A ring of dried blood sticks in the cracks. “Give me a sec.”

He comes back with a towel full of loose ice. “Hand down,” he directs, and places the makeshift pack on my hand. I’ve inadvertently made him curious. I really look at his face: his eyes stand out against dark hair, a symmetrical face, and straight teeth.

The dark shadows in the London streets seem a little farther away. For now, anyways.

***

Here’s the full story: https://meganhennessey.wordpress.com/2012/12/18/london-streets-a-love-story/ Be sure to let me know what you think!

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9 Replies to “Happy (Belated) Valentine’s Day!”

  1. What an exquisite little jewel of a scene! It is a beautiful reminder that romance can have many forms. For every HEA, there are so many chance encounters where two lives touch, however ephemerally. The MC desperately needed basic human contact to counteract the inhumanity of her attacker. I especially like the way the MC slowly lets herself recognize first that she’s safe, then acknowledges the bartender as an individual, and finally allows him to reach out to her.

    Now that’s writing!

  2. I agree with Jess. It’s sharp and captures a short moment in time, yet we learn so much. She feels very alone. She’s in some kind of trouble. And I adore her snarky comeback! The only comment I have (and it didn’t pull me out) was this line: “I have suddenly taken great interest in my drink.” I would change to: “I suddenly take great interest in my drink.” Something like that. Otherwise.. GREAT JOB!

  3. I like the abruptness of the conversation here, the way she begins by holding him at arms-length and the way the barriers between them slowly start to break down. However, I feel like the scene was a little bit too stark. It didn’t draw me in or make me feel any strong emotion, like I wanted it to. Perhaps slowing it down a bit and adding more sensory elements (not just what she sees and hears, but taste, smell, touch) would help bring the emotion into the scene.

    1. Hmm, I see what you mean by that starkness. My biggest challenge here was finding a scene that already had that deep connection present (versus writing a new one for the blog hop, which would be cheating, in a way :P). I’ll do a rewrite of this scene and slow it down. Thanks for the honest feedback!

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