In an earlier post I mentioned the story seed for “It Was Her Eyes.” I thought some of you would enjoy seeing a pre-edited rough draft of the beginning of my story. As in all aspects of my story, it is likely to continue evolving and hopefully improving until I release it–and sometimes even afterwards.
Based on warnings about global plagiarism from other authors, I no longer plan to share whole stories in my blogs but I thought it probably wouldn’t hurt to provide this tidbit so you can see how my stories evolve from a story seed into a rough draft.
Excerpt from the beginning of It Was Her Eyes:
It was hanging on the wall over the bed in the guest bedroom of a friend’s home I was visiting for the first time, a stunning painting that was the focal point of the room. It portrayed a beautiful young Hispanic woman. She was nude and lying on her side stretched out on a long scarlet velvet chaise facing the bed in which I’d soon be sleeping. She appeared to be about my age, but her eyes seemed so much older. The background was an opulent room in what I imagined might be a grand mansion in Mexico or the U.S. near the border. Based on the furniture and other items in the room the painting depicted a scene from long ago, perhaps shortly after the U.S. Civil War.
I couldn’t keep from staring at her.
My friend’s wife, Cheryl, chuckled and said with a knowing smile, “It’s her eyes. They seem to follow you wherever you are in the room.” She was partially right. I nodded. It was her eyes, but not just because they seemed to follow us as we moved in the room. It was far more than that.
After my hostess bade me goodnight, I stood mesmerized by the painted woman, staring at the most intriguing eyes I’d ever seen. Beneath their irresistible come-hither invitation, it was as though I could see into the depths of her soul and could feel everything she felt. They spoke of lost innocence, regret, pain, and desperation.
With growing sadness, I sensed she had once been an innocent young girl with a vibrant, beautiful spirit, but was now trapped by circumstances beyond her control. I knew her innocence had been stolen from her, and her spirit had been greatly diminished by a lifetime of hardship and ugliness compressed into her too few years.
Her eyes showed she was fiercely, desperately, clinging to her last vestiges of hope. But they held another, more painful message. She thought her battle was a lost cause because she’d sunk so low she was beyond saving, and would soon be beyond caring.
I wondered what had given her the strength to fight for so long.
Then I felt something else from those eyes. A desperate plea for help.