Shannon here: Avalon/Heartsong Presents/Revell author, Laurie Alice Eakes shares how she met her husband and an excerpt from Lady in the Mist. Sorry no copy of the book to give away. But Laurie’s helping me give away a copy of Eileen Hinkle Rife’s book, Journey to Judah. Comment on any post dated Feb 7 – 11 for a chance to win. Deadline: Midnight Central time Feb 12. Here’s Laurie:
Once upon a time, I stepped aboard an airplane that zipped me from Virginia to Oregon. A van—I think it was a van—whisked me from Portland to—I tell no lies—Boring. Yes, Boring, Oregon. Exhausted, as I’d been up since about 3:00 a.m. eastern time, and this was about 2:00 p.m. Pacific time, and arriving without my luggage coming with me, I collapsed on my bed in the dorm.
No, I wasn’t a college student. I was attending a three week training at Guide Dogs for the Blind. In less than an hour, I met Rebel, a quiet and dignified yellow Labrador. Hmm. Someone read me incorrectly, if the dog was supposed to match the handler.
Two hours after that, I met the man I would marry in two years.
Yes, with our yellow Labradors at our feet, we were introduced over a dining room table in Boring, Oregon. We hit it off straight away. Three times a day, we saw one another over meals. We saw one another elsewhere. In fact, those “seeings” grew more frequent. One night, while he played the guitar in the music room, and I sat on the floor listening, a still small voice said, “He’s the one.”
Um, no. He’s adorable. He’s brilliant. He’s funny and kind and just plain great, but “the one?” I’m not looking, whoever you are talking in my head.
I knew it was the Lord. We weren’t on speaking terms. At least I was trying not to listen to Him. Yet God meant that place, that meeting, to get me out to Illinois, where my husband to be lived, to a fabulous church, and back on my knees, my heart turned to the Lord—and subsequently writing Christian fiction. A match made in heaven, despite the weird name of the town in which we met.
Is it any wonder I write romance where the relationship draws the characters back to the Lord? Here is the meeting of Tabitha and Dominick, the hero and heroine in Lady in the Mist, February, 2011, Revell Books.
But as she turned and crunched her way along the hard-packed sand toward home, she couldn’t stop herself from slipping into the hope, the dream of a beloved striding out of the mist to greet her, take her hand in his–
Lost in her imagination, she blundered straight into a person standing on the beach. He grunted. She reeled backward. Her heel caught in the hem of her skirt. Her other foot slipped on the wet sand, and her posterior struck the ground with a splat like a landed fish.
The person moved, looming over her. “What do we have here?” Quiet, the voice was real and male, deep and unmistakably English. “Are you all right?”
He sounded friendly, even warm, and not threatening. Yet no one should be about on this stretch of beach in the wee hours of the morning. No Englishman should be about on the Atlantic coast, where young men disappeared with regularity unless he were–
“Pressgang,” the word burst from her like a curse, and her heart began to race. Her mouth went dry, tasting bitter.
She tried to scramble to her feet. She needed to warn the village men to stay inside. But her cloak and skirts tangled around her, holding her down.
“Let me help you.” Still speaking in an undertone, he stooped before her. She caught an exotic scent like sandalwood, saw no more than a shadow outline and dark hair tumbling around features pale in the misty gloom.
Listening for others moving about on the beach, Tabitha waved him off. “No, thank you. I can manage myself.”
She tugged at her skirt, and nearly toppled sideways.
“You don’t look to be doing such a good job of it.” Laughter tinged his words. The hand that clasped one of hers was real and masculine, strong and too smooth to belong to a fisherman or sailor. “Perhaps you can get to your feet if I help. Do you have feet? There does seem to be something trailing behind you. Perhaps it’s a tail. Are you a mermaid?”
Tabitha snorted and tried to wrench her hand away. Flirtation would get the stranger nowhere with her. The instant she regained her feet, she would run back to town and warn the sheriff or mayor that the English were at it again, stealing young American men to serve aboard their ships in their endless war with France.
If the man let her go. At that moment, he gripped her hand with a firmness suggesting he would not.
About Laurie: Laurie Alice Eakes writes full time and lives in Texas, with her husband, two dogs, two cats, and strays who keep adopting them. Besides reading and writing, Laurie Alice likes long walks, knitting, though she’s not very good at it, and watching movies with her husband. Others, too, but especially her husband. If it’s around, they also enjoy live music and theater, trying new types of foods and visiting interesting places.
Come back Feb 9 for Eileen Hinkle Rife’s real life romance.