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I’m pleased (and relieved) to announce that I’m finally finished writing the long awaited short story, OLD CARS, in which Tammy and Jamie (from CRUSH) travel to Michigan’s Northern Peninsula to meet Jamie’s Uncle Brendan and cousin Carly. It’s going to be a long haul explaining how Lloyd Tafford tracked down these relatives in ARMOUR while searching for another child, Joey Rollins. But in the meantime, Jamie, after years of only corresponding with his Uncle by phone, finally overcomes his shyness and his fear of potential homophobia from Uncle Brendan. After several years of marriage to Tammy, and no hints of hatred in any phone conversation, Jamie is convinced Uncle Brendan is a good man. He must be, because he has asked both Jamie and Tammy to come and observe seventeen-year old Carly, who is autistic. I have based Carly on my younger sister. It takes someone very special to raise a special needs child, and Jamie and Tammy must think very hard about such a huge decision. The parents should never be alone. They should surround themselves with support of all kinds.
“Brendan sits in his chair quietly, smoking Cherrywood tobacco in a pipe, having refused to quit to sate the doctors, his face covered in a full beard to hide a gauntness that might otherwise have terrified his son. He wears warm, fluffy jumpers of cotton and wool and keeps covered in blankets and quilts as he sits by a crackling fire in a stone fireplace. His house smells of cinnamon and old newspapers, and it’s a welcoming, homey smell that Jamie and I love. He tires easily, but his rest periods are brief, and he enjoys telling us stories of how he met his wife, how surprised they were to have Carly after years of trying to conceive a baby and then giving up.
His eyes moisten a bit when he speaks of Amelia’s death, but he shakes it off quickly and says simply, “The unjust have their reward waiting for them, and she gave me this sweet boy. He is a handful, I warn you.'”
OLD CARS is now published and available for preview and on sale for $0.99 at Smashwords.