Excerpt from Adirondack Moon
I’m having a rather good time posting excerpts from some of my novels-in-the-works. This is a story called Adirondack Moon likely to be released in the fall of the year.
Success wasn’t supposed to feel like this…flat, empty, meaningless.
Eli Cameron passed a twenty to the cab driver and stepped out into the foggy drizzle. The cold spring mist enveloped the night, casting golden coronas around the streetlights. The three-story brownstone looked cold and empty, no light coming from the elongated windows that yawned beside the wide stone stoop. He took the stairs two at a time, unlocked the large oak door and hurried inside to escape the chill.
Eli’s second novel had been sold to a publisher and tonight there had been a celebration party in his honor. He should still be at Mark’s house, partying, but he had feigned exhaustion and left. Although he was the center of attention, surrounded by his friends, and a cadre of people from his writer’s group, Eli had felt totally alone. Even the champagne had tasted bitter.
Water dripped from his raincoat as he flung it over the banister and turned on the hall light, illuminating the ornately carved staircase and the wainscoted walls of the entryway. He toed off his shoes and walked into the kitchen, opened the refrigerator and took out a beer. Popping the top, he nudged the refrigerator door closed with his hip and took a long drink of the icy cold brew.
Rubbing his palm against his chest, he tried to soothe the dull ache inside, turned and walked into the livingroom and sat down on the buttery-soft, leather couch. He looked around the room, at the rich chocolate-brown walls, the bright, clean white paint of the woodwork, the leather and wood and soft, expensive fabrics. Such a contrast to the ramshackle old Victorian house he grew up in with its crumbly linoleum on the kitchen floor, the scratched hardwood floors, the stained and sagging furniture. It had been home, nonetheless.
The note he’d scribbled only minutes before leaving for his party sat on the coffee table, bearing the name of the woman he was supposed to call. A hospice worker. His hands shook while he’d written it down, listening to Ben’s voice as he told him that his father was sick.
Why hadn’t his father told him? Eli drove up north to his father’s house almost every weekend. The three hour drive on Saturday morning was a ritual that Eli looked forward to each week. Arriving just in time for his father’s first coffee, they would spend the day working on old cars, restoring them for his father to sell. Eli had learned everything he knew about cars standing at his father’s side since he was six years old.
Had he missed the signs of his father’s illness in the last few months? If he’d seen something, gotten his father to a doctor sooner, would he have had a chance against the cancer that was eating away at his stomach? Jesus!
Eli finished the beer in his hand, stood, crushed the can and sent it hurling against the wall. The explosion of anger did nothing to release the fear clawing at his heart. Helplessness was never a part of Eli’s world until now. He fixed things. That was what he did, who he was. But this…
Taking in a deep breath to settle himself he walked over to the window, stood there, thinking. He needed a plan, and he needed information. If they were going to fight this thing, he would have to find out everything he could about the disease. The internet would provide him with the details, but for now, getting an accurate diagnosis was paramount.
Needing to move, to do something, he went upstairs to pack a bag. Stuffing enough clothes into his suitcase to last a week, he grabbed his keys and closed up the house. Revving up the engine on his sixty-seven Shelby Mustang, he pulled out of the garage onto the quiet street.
Rain fell harder now, fog drifting along the highway in patches. It was crazy to drive up the Northway at this time of night scanning the road for deer. But it didn’t matter, he needed to get home.