Don't get me wrong, I love giving gifts, and I love making things. But right now, I just want to be done with it all. That, and housework too. I did seven loads of laundry today. Juli's blanket needed to be washed twice. And it's all waiting to be folded once the kids are in bed. How relaxing.
So, if in the near future I take a break from crafting, don't be surprised.
This post is a little depressing, so I leave you with an excerpt from one of my stalled works-in-progress. It's from a middle-grade novel that I titled "The Ring"...then later that year that creepy movie came out...
Disclaimer: This is a first draft. It needs lots of work. It may not get it, since I don't think I'll be finishing this story.
Tad stood over his dead friend. He had no more goodbyes to say. There remained one thing to do—after all, Jarvis wouldn’t need it anymore. He reached out and lifted Jarvis’s right hand, shuddering at the cold lifelessness of it. The ring needed a bit of a tug to remove it. Tad slipped it into his pocket.
“What do you think you’re doing?”
The question was hissed from the archway behind him; Tad spun around. It was only Gertrude. “Nothing. Never mind.”
“You took the ring.” Gertrude’s eyes narrowed in accusation.
“So,” Tad didn’t think there was any point in denying what the girl had likely seen with her own eyes. “It’s a waste to bury something so valuable. I can get a lot of money for it.”
“But what about the curse? All of those people were ruined—the fisherman, the merchant…”
Tad waved his hand to dismiss the thought. “It’s only a story.” He stepped down from the platform that held the coffin.
“Jarvis himself—you can’t deny that.” Gertrude raised her finger dramatically. “That stupid ring destroyed his life, tore apart his family, and then killed him to finish the job.
“You can’t prove it.” Tad thrust out his chin, his stubbornness refusing to listen to the nagging voice that told him that what she was saying made sense. “It’s just coincidence, nothing more.”
“Give me the ring.” Gertrude planted her feet firmly on the floor and held out her hand, palm up. She pushed her hair off of her shoulder and curled her other hand in to a fist, resting it on her hip. Tad worried for a moment that she would come after him. He quickly dismissed that thought. After all, she wasn’t very much bigger than him. He pushed his hand into his pocket. “No. I’m going to sell it.” Tad reacted just a second too late when Gertrude lunged at him. She managed to grab the back of his tunic and held on. He couldn’t squirm out of her grip, but held the ring tight in his fist. Gertrude grabbed his hand and pried open his fingers. Tad jerked his arm, trying to get free before she took the ring. It flew up in the air; its gems glinting in the candlelight then fell to the floor with a soft ringing sound. Tad lunged for it, but Gertrude caught him around the neck. Without warning, she stopped moving. “Shhh.” She listened intently, and gave Tad a smack on the arm to stop his struggling.
“Someone’s coming.” She let go of the boy’s neck and dragged him over to the thick draperies that covered the back wall of the nave. They ducked behind them and pressed back on the cold stone.
“You didn’t have to hit me.” Tad muttered with a scowl, rubbing his arm. “Could’ve broken my neck too.”
“Hush. Don’t move.” Gertrude turned her head. “I can see in that mirror,” She spoke so quietly that she hardly made a sound. "It’s Elle—she’s dusting."
Tad scrunched his eyes shut. Don’t let her find it; don’t let her find it… Beside him, he felt Gertrude’s body stiffen. She found it.
Many long moments passed before Gertrude let out her breath. “She’s gone.” Her whisper was a bit louder now. “With the ring.”
Tad muttered a curse under his breath, then looked at Gertrude to make sure she hadn’t heard.
She hadn’t. “What are we going to do? She’s going to be cursed and it’s all your fault! If you had only left the ring with Jarvis like he asked…” Gertrude flopped down on an ornately carved chair and sighed.
“My fault?” Tad’s voice was pitched higher than normal “You wrestled it out of my hand! You made me drop it.”
“Me? You—augh!” Gertrude’s sputtering voice rose in volume. She had evidently forgotten that they weren’t supposed to be in the chapel at all.
“Keep it down.” Tad hissed. “In any case, we’ll have to get it back. We haven’t finished arguing about it—and if it’s really cursed, we can’t let Elle keep it."
(Copyright belongs to the author known here as Jo @ To a Pretty Life. Please do not reprint or otherwise use any writing on this blog without written permission.)