Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Getting there

I've been writing all day, trying to make a self-imposed goal of writing 30 pages before Saturday. My hands ache from typing, but I am three pages from making it. When I do, I will have the first third of my next book finished. The first draft of the book, anyway. And in case you missed it, it is a sequel to "A Question of Boundaries" called (so far) "A Question of Trust."

I can't tell you the release date for "Boundaries" yet, but hope it won't be too far in the future. Meanwhile, here's a scene in which Caroline has her first ride in a steam carriage.

     Caroline couldn’t help staring. The vehicle looked like a steamcab, but instead of the bright red and yellow paint that proclaimed a vehicle for hire, this was larger and was black with silver trim. The seats were of polished leather and as she sat down Caroline noted they also were more comfortable. Steam was vented from a pipe under the rear chassis, where the boiler was located, but the hod for the coal was in the front, giving balance to the whole.
     “What do you call this?” she asked.
     “A steam carriage. There haven’t been too many manufactured yet. I was lucky to get one of the first ones available. While steamcabs are limited to city streets, this one can go much farther. And faster.” He reached under the front seat and pulled out two pairs of goggles, which he handed to his passengers. “You will need these,” he said.
     The women buckled the leather straps behind their heads and then replaced their hats. Nathan had also donned a pair of goggles and with a lurch, they were in motion.
     The steam carriage could go no faster than the traffic around it, but when they reached less populated streets, it took on a speed that was both frightening and exhilarating. Caroline guessed they were traveling at least as fast as a railway train. She pressed a hand to her hat to keep it from flying away. Tabby had a firm grip on her shawl, which threatened to take off like a kite.
     “If the roads were better, I could go much faster than this,” Nathan yelled over his shoulder.
Caroline didn’t catch every word, but she understood enough. “Goodness, how could we go any faster?” she gasped, tightening her hold on the armrest as they juddered and bumped along the cobblestone streets.
     “I’m going to be black and blue,” Tabby said into her ear. “I won’t be able to sit down for a month.”
     Nodding her agreement, Caroline was relieved when the steam carriage slowed to a halt by an open field. Nathan hopped out and handed them down. “I hope you aren’t too discombobulated,” he said. “The springs are supposed to ease the jostling.”
      “I suppose it would have been worse without springs,” Caroline said, refraining from rubbing her bottom.

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