You know, I probably should put a little taste of my books in here every now again, just to get people excited about reading more when they finally come out.
The following scene is one that is currently (note the use of the word; nothing is ever finalized until it’s sent to a publisher for printing) in the second book. I mentioned it last night: Anselm and Kalyn have a good argument.
The set-up: Kalyn has developed anemia from feeding both Anselm and Ciaran constantly (there are no other Yaechahre living with them right now), so she’s been sidelined for a week. After that, she’s only going to feed Ciaran–at least until they can get some help. Anselm and everyone else in the house went out, one Saturday evening, “hunting.” Kalyn’s feelings are hurt that no one—especially Anselm and Micah—invited her to go out with them. When it’s dark, Ciaran appears, ready to go out as well. He doesn’t like the idea of leaving Kalyn alone, so he takes her with him. They take his new motorcycle to Knoxville and stay out fairly late (about 11PM).
When they got back home, Kalyn noticed everyone’s cars were back in the driveway; Ciaran circled neatly around them and parked in the garage. She handed the helmet back to him and turned to go to the house, when Anselm appeared in the open doorway.
“There you are,” he said, sounding relieved and angry at the same time.
“Here I am,” she said, sounding more smart-ass than she intended.
Anselm frowned. “I’ve been trying to call you for nearly two hours. Why didn’t you answer?”
Kalyn started to put her hand into her pocket, then realized her phone wasn’t in it. “I guess I forgot my phone.”
“You could have left me a note, telling me you were going out,” he said, sounding increasingly angry. “Everyone else said you were still here when they left, and no one knew where you were. I thought someone had come in and kidnapped you.”
Kalyn thought for a moment. “Why didn’t you just check the security cameras? You would have seen me leaving with Ciaran.”
Anselm looked taken aback; clearly he hadn’t thought about doing that. “Still, you need to tell me where you’re going,” he argued.
“Or maybe you just need to ask me to go with you next time. That way you’ll know where I am,” she said, her voice barbed.
Anselm looked even more astonished, but quickly recovered. “Did you do this to… punish me? Did you want me to come back, find you gone, and be terrified that something had happened to you?”
“No,” Kalyn snapped, growing angry. “I didn’t think about you at all. Ciaran just asked me to go out with him, because he, at least, thought maybe it wasn’t a good idea for me to be left here alone, and I guess I was just so excited that someone thought about me, that I ran out of the house without my phone or anything. Of course, no one thought about me before they left, so why should I think they’d think about me when they got back?”
Anselm looked as if she had just slapped him. He had to swallow hard before he could speak, and his voice was low and controlled—although Kalyn couldn’t tell if he was trying hard not to sound angry or hurt. “Kalyn, I didn’t ask you to go out with us tonight because one, a bar is not an appropriate place for you—and you’re too young to get in anyways. And secondly, do you really want to watch me pick up another woman right in front of you?”
It was Kalyn’s turn to be shocked; she hadn’t thought about it that way. “No,” she said slowly, “I guess not.”
“Don’t say I don’t think about you,” he said quietly, but clearly angry again. “I was trying to spare your feelings.”
Kalyn looked down at the concrete floor. “Okay, I’ll buy that,” she finally said, “but my feelings did get hurt when everyone went out without me. Ciaran was the only person who thought to ask me to go out.”
Anselm took her chin in his hand and lifted it, forcing her to look at him. “Ciaran wasn’t going out because he was hungry. Kalyn, you need to understand that when we’re going hunting, we are not going out to be social. We’re not being mean when we leave you behind; we’re going to do what we have to do so we can come back home and be with the people we’d rather be with in the first place.”
Kalyn stared at him, then blinked as tears stung her eyes. Anselm sighed and hugged her to him. “I suppose I should have explained that in the beginning.”
Kalyn sniffed a little, trying not to cry. “It would have helped,” she mumbled.
Anselm sighed again; he sounded weary. Kalyn thought he was probably aggravated with her, but he didn’t say anything. He just stood there, holding her, as the minutes stretched by. “If I say I’m sorry,” she finally said, “can I at least be sent to my room? I promise not to leave; you don’t have to hold me down.”
Anselm laughed a little and let go of her, stepping back. “I should probably ground you. Sneaking out of the house to go out with a delinquent on a motorcycle…. How typically teenager.”
Kalyn laughed a little, feeling relieved that their fight appeared to be over. Then she looked around. “Where did Ciaran go?”
“I think he snuck out the side door.”
Kalyn laughed again. Anselm smiled at her and took her hand, and they walked slowly back to the house.