Narrowly escaping Jenny’s wrath, Delilah leaves Tranquility, Vermont. Plagued by a miscarriage, failed marriage to an abusive husband, and the guilt of having left her only son behind, she travels cross country. Arriving in Freedom, a small town north of Pittsburgh, she encounters two strangers, Marine Sergeant Albert Parsons, a Vietnam War veteran, and Police Sergeant James McGreedy. Beginning anew, she attempts to come to terms with herself. Then one night, in the midst of struggling with past memories, her life takes a precarious turn, as her recent acquaintances unexpectedly arrive at her door.
Delilah, is the second of a three book series titled, Ring of Fire.
Edgy fiction that will leave you clinging to every word.
©Copyright 2019, Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
I looked up into the midnight sky. Even through the dirty panes of glass I could make out the stars. They were bright, but not as bright as the moon. It was big and round, and filled the backyard with a silvery kind of light. I could see the shades of gray in the mountains and valleys I usually only see with my binoculars. Binoculars are an odd thing to use for looking at the stars, but it was the only thing I had. At that moment, Mom caught me at the open window.
“Delilah Ann O’Donnell,” she always used my full name when she was mad, “go to bed. I’ll be in later.”
She startled me a little. I never expected her to see me there. I stepped back nearly falling off the tool chest. “Sorry, Mom,” and I hopped down, hurried back to my room, and closed the door.
I went to my window. It was open allowing the cool night air to filter in. I crossed my arms on the sill and stared up at the stars. They were different somehow. Not like that they looked different, but that now they had a different meaning. It felt like they were moving away, a stranger, not like the friend that was there most every night. I wiped away a tear. I wasn’t even sure I wanted to look at them any more. I always thought of moonbeams and starlight as dancing and carefree, but not now. They were heavy, crashing down, scattering all over the grass as if telling me that Mom was doing something wrong. But, how could she be?
The hole had been almost to her waist when I peeked out the window. By now it must be way more. So bad I wanted to go back in the garage and ask how much longer she would be, but she was so annoyed with me the first time, as much as I was tired and scared, I would just wait.
I guess digging a grave takes time. It isn’t something a kid thinks about. I guess it’s one of those things you only expect to do once in a great while. Finally, I heard the soft clang of the tools as they were being put back in place in the garage. Then it was her footsteps in the hallway. My door opened. The light from the hallway made her look dark, almost evil, but I knew that she could never be.
When my eyes focused, I saw she was dirty head to toe. I’d never seen her so grimy. She was always after me to clean and wash up, but I guess graving, or whatever its called, is messy work. Even her cheeks were streaked from tears that were all dried up.
“I’m almost done, Baby,” she said, “just a little while longer.”
She closed my door. I could hear her footsteps down the hallway and as she walked back and forth in the living room. I looked back up at the stars. They had a silvery sparkle that always seemed special. But I like the moon best. I guess it’s the different shades of gray and how the mountains rise up to make the ridges and patterns. But tonight the stars and the moon meant something special, they meant the end of being hurt.