Can I tantalise you with this short excerpt from my book?
Klara was already seated at the breakfast table when Izzy finally came to join her. She looked up from her dish of eggs Benedict. ‘I’m sorry but I’ve started. I was starving.’
Izzy stood at the buffet and helped herself to coffee. After deliberation, she chose a croissant and pain au chocolat and sat down opposite Klara who had returned to her food.
She sighed and glanced round the room, taking in the piano in one corner, the unlit black stove in the fireplace, with an odd sense of recognition.
‘Sleep well?’ She asked Klara.
The other nodded. ‘Like a log, the bed was very comfortable but even if it wasn’t, I was dog tired.’
‘I just couldn’t get off. Too excited, I suppose. And there was something out there that kept making this strange noise. Goodness knows what it was.’
Klara grinned. ‘A fox, I guess. I always forget you’re not used to the country.’
‘Well, we do go out to Donohue Woods sometimes. That’s pretty wild.’
‘But you’ve never actually lived in the country.’
Izzy sipped her coffee. ‘Ugh no! I like the city life far too much. It’s so quiet in the country and you have to wear such sensible shoes.’
She watched Klara for a moment. How rooted she was, feet
squarely planted in the physical world, understanding current affairs, studying literature. If only I could be like that. But I always feel restless, searching for something though I don’t know what exactly. Maybe my father, whoever he was.
Mother was always so evasive whenever she asked the question. ‘It’s not important, darling. You’ve never lacked anything, have you? He was just a man who let me down.’
‘Penny for them, Izzy?’
She smiled. Klara understood her only too well. ‘I was thinking about Mother.’
‘She’s just wonderful, isn’t she? I mean the way she copes. You’d never think…would you?’
‘Oh yes, she’s amazing, of course. But I wish she’d tell me about my father. It’s all so mysterious. There are no photographs in the house, not a trace of him.’
‘Maybe you were the result of an immaculate conception,’ Klara remarked, wryly. ‘Or Venus born from the sea.’
Izzy smoothed the sleeves of her crepe de chine blouse. ‘I might just as well have been. But it’s hard, Klara, you don’t know how hard it is. You have a solid family life and brothers and sisters. There’s only mother and me. You can’t know what it’s like.’
‘Brothers and sisters can be a mixed blessing,’ Klara replied, ‘Especially when you’re trying to write. What I’d give for a little room all of my own where I could keep my books and my writing materials. Virginia had the right idea.’
‘I guess none of us is satisfied,’ Izzy sighed