Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday, a weekly blog hop which encourages writers to move WIPs (works-in-progress) to publication by posting excerpts related to the date. It’s hosted by the lovely K.L. Schwengel, maven of bad boys, stock dogs, and flying monkeys! She may be less physically present for a bit, but she’s still our fearless shepherd…or something like that, anyway.
Today’s WIPpet is brought to you by CampNaNoWriMo…
Can Kifo Island help three generations of a wounded makeshift family coexist despite the forces and secrets that tear them apart, or will time run out for the dying grandmother, the abusive stepfather, and the brilliant, traumatized little girl caught in the middle?
- Today is April 29, 2015.
- I was born on the 29th day of another month, and I’m 45 years old.
- I subtracted the date from my age, and so we have 16 mostly short sentences today.
Last week, we meet Gladys, an elderly woman with Parkinson’s Disease; Howard, her grandson; and Iris, Howard’s young stepdaughter. Today, we skip forward a scene. Howard has left in a snit, because his grandmother is kind to the child he sees as insolent, leaving Iris alone with the aged woman. Now we begin to see into the silent little girl, as she contemplates what’s next…
Disclaimer for possible triggers…I want this story to offer a positive message; but not to shy away from the topic of abuse and its impacts. This scene involves a child who knows more than most about the workings of the adult world. Therefore, it may not be suitable for all audiences…
She would have let herself feel relief that he was gone –
But sometimes johns came back. That was always worse.
And she would not forget – no, not ever! – that that is what he was. Not Howard George, as Grandermother called him. Not Father Howie.
Never that. It was a mantra she sang, in those moments when his cruelty broke over her. Never, never, never.…
He was a john.
“Well, little one, it’s just us, now. What will we -?”
Iris had been watching the door, in case the john returned, but the broken sentence dangling in the clean air made her look at Grandermother instead –
She was frozen where she stood, her hands gripping the walking frame, her mouth still open on the last word.
Iris looked at the door again – what if he came back now, when Grandermother wasn’t able to protect her? – and took three long soft breaths, the way Hahaoya had shown her, for when she was frightened by what the john was doing.
“You must never give yourself away, Airisu.”
Will Iris try to help Grandermother? Will Howard come back? What was this child’s life like, before Howard came into it, and how did that happen?
I’m going to keep you guessing…in part because this is, so far, the most difficult novel I’ve embarked upon. So many triggers…
Also, the kids and I were out of state from Thursday-Sunday, and I used most of the writing time I had to move my A-Z posts along. I’m behind on getting around to visit other WIPpeteers, but hope to remedy that, at least in part, today. If I don’t get to you, I apologize – I expect to do much better at that this week!
Need more WIPpet Snippets? Something a little less angsty, perhaps? Well, hop onto the little blue froggy; assorted genres, styles, and lengths of WIPpet lily-pads to choose from! =D