The Lakes: Prequel Novella
(The Lakes #1)
(c) Amanda Dick
Eli Lake sat in his bedroom doorway in the dark, leaning against the door frame the way he used to do when he was a kid; knees drawn up, head resting back. His legs were far too long these days to rest the soles of his feet against the frame like he used to do, but the sense of comfort he gained from just sitting there was enough. The waves breaking on the beach outside his cottage provided a familiar backdrop to the moment, soothing him, preparing him for what was ahead. He closed his eyes and listened to his heart, beat after beat after beat.
In the past few days, a weight had been lifted off his soul that had been there for so long he barely remembered a time when it wasn’t. It had become such a part of him, woven into his DNA, that he almost didn’t recognise himself without it. It gave him a peculiar sense of buoyancy, as if he might float away if he wasn’t tethered to the earth by gravity.
Opening his eyes, he glanced over at the bed to see her bathed in moonlight, wrapped in silver bed sheets that gave the impression she was carved from pure marble. His hands ached to trace her body the way he had only hours before. His lips longed to kiss her. His body wanted to stand, to make its way over to the bed and lie down once again beside her. But he willed himself to be still, to take her in, every precious inch. It was both pure agony and pure ecstasy.
He sat watching her breathe until his bones ached and his muscles screamed. Then he slowly got to his feet, stretching silently, relieving the pressure. He knew what he had to do, and that doing it would mean leaving her. He picked up his shorts and t-shirt off the floor and pulled them on, watching to make sure he didn’t wake her, then he walked through into the living room.
As he slid open the drawer and picked up the letter, the last few months played through his head. Scenes from his childhood pierced the playback like a badly edited movie. The moments that haunted him, the ones that shaped him, the ones that ruined him. Then he slid the letter into his pocket, opened the sliding glass door and walked out onto the beach.
The moonlight turned the sand to silver and the water to ink. Every shell glowed; every piece of driftwood was etched into the seascape as if he was walking into a painting. The letter was a brick in his pocket, anchoring him to this time, this place, as he walked slowly along the beach. When he couldn’t walk any further he sank onto the sand and pulled the letter out of his pocket.
There was just enough moonlight to read his name scrawled on the envelope. The familiar handwriting tugged at his heart so viciously that he almost put the letter back into his pocket. Realising how close he was to losing it altogether, he ripped open the envelope before he could change his mind.
Taking a deep breath, he began to read.
"Beautiful writing, the emotion and description in this book warmed my heart. The Lakes is a Prequel Novella for a major forthcoming book series by Amanda Dick and I was hooked by it from the very first page." ~ Cupcakes and Bookshelves (14 March 2018)