Hello to all!! Hope all is well with everyone! Would love to hear your thoughts and comments on this next excerpt!
Nicholas Durand’s office had the
perfect view. He could watch the ocean go on for days just by gazing out of the
large bay window that was directly across from his desk, neatly kept, his
papers organized. Since his office was at home, across the hallway from his
bedroom, he was able to add whatever personal touches he wanted. Most likely,
the four foot Stevie Nicks poster hanging from the wall would not be accepted in most corporate
legs were crossed as he leaned back in his black leather office chair. He held
his three hundred dollar pen in his right hand and turned his gaze to the
ocean. The water was a luscious grey-blue today and it captivated him. It inspired him. He had had plenty of time
to rest since his last book tour for The
Unkept Heart and he was ready to start the process over again.
pages of blank loose leaf paper littered his desk, or at least what he would call littered. In reality it
was incredibly kept. He could not stand to have his workspace anything other
than immaculate, and he always insisted on keeping it that way. He could have
the perfect plot line for a story, something terribly important that needed to
be written down but, if when he sat down at his desk, it was a tragic mess, the
story would have to wait. It had always been that way.
the ocean was incredible. Not like there was ever a day in Nicholas’s life when
it wasn’t, but today it was incredibly inspiring. He lowered his pen to the
paper and began to outline. Began to outline about a woman who had everything
in the world she could have wanted, only to watch it slip right out from
underneath her, with her eyes wide open. Then this woman finds a man who turns
her world upside down for the better, and they begin to start a life together.
Durand’s first novel, So, This Is Love
was published when he was twenty. He was in the middle of his junior year at
the University of Massachusetts and though the book was a huge hit, he vowed to
remain in school until he graduated. That summer of 1990, he hit the road for
his book tour. No, it wasn’t as full scale as a new release by Stephen King,
but he did stop at thirty different venues from early June to late July. It was
on his last stop, in Jersey City, New Jersey that he met Alexandra.
red tablecloth fell over the table and a banner hung from the front,
proclaiming the arrival of a breakthrough first novel. A box filled with copies
of his book was placed under the table if anyone was interested in purchasing a
copy. Two pieces of rope served as a barrier for a line.
had been seated behind the table since the store’s opening at 10:00 am, and had
signed a couple hundred copies of his book in the few hours that he had been
there. As the clock approached two, he realized that he had not eaten lunch.
would it be alright if I left for a half hour or so to grab a quick bite to
eat?” he asked the store’s manager.
would be fine. Drive safely.”
you.. Keep an eye on the table while I’m gone, alright?”
slowly rose from his chair and grabbed the box of books from under the table.
He turned to leave, when someone gently reached for his arm. It startled him,
but only for a second.
“Mr. Durand, are
you leaving so soon?” It was a fresh faced raven haired beauty who had the most
beautiful emerald blue eyes he had ever seen.
“May I help you
miss?” He smiled at her. She had caught him a little off guard, but was willing
to oblige to whatever she wanted.
Durand. I’m… a very big fan of your novel.” She was incredibly nervous as she
looked up at him. She couldn’t have been more than eight-teen years old. She
held out a copy of So, This Is Love,
her cheeks turning a rosy shade of pink. “Do you think it would be possible for
you to…Mr. Durand I feel really bad asking, were you headed off somewhere?”
“Well, I was
going to grab a bite to eat but that can wait. Would you like me to sign your
book?” He was a little embarrassed at the fact that she was so visibly shaken
at meeting her literary idol. I’m nothing
more than a local celebrity really. Bless her heart.
Her eyes were
still somewhat avoiding his. “I…uh…my name is Alex, Mr. Durand. It is such a
pleasure to meet you.” He was completely flattered that she was so taken at
“It’s a pleasure
to meet you too Alex.” He extended his hand. “Are you from around here?”
“I suppose so.
I’ve lived in a few different cities in the Northeast my whole life, but I’ve
been here for three years. It’s very nice, but I miss the beach. What about
“Am I from
around here? No, I grew up in Boston but I do love the beach. My family always
went to Cape Cod every summer. It’s so beautiful there.”
“Really? I lived
in Chatham for five years.” The excitement rang in her voice. “It is so
peaceful there. I lived off of Shore Road.” She was slowly becoming more
comfortable talking to Nicholas, but the thought of the situation still
distracted her ever so slightly.
isn’t it?” he asked intuitively. He pulled his pen out of his front pocket and
signed the book for her. She looked down at his signature and smiled.
“Mr. Durand, I
really appreciate this. It was a pleasure meeting you.”
“Same to you
Alex. Same to you.” She began to turn away and head in the direction of the
magazine aisle but he stopped her with his voice. “I was going to head out and
pick up some lunch, would you maybe like to join me?” she couldn’t have been
more than two years his junior, and there was something in her reserved ways
that really spoke to him, called out to him.
“Yes Mr. Durand.
That does sound nice.”
And so it began.