I want to share an excerpt from my newest novel, “Remember?”
(book 2, Chapter 1, in Forbidden Series)
“PULL OVER HERE! Now! Quick!” Larry Davis exclaimed. “That face. The woman adjusting the scarf on that mannequin.”
Joe Winton raised his bushy black eyebrows in astonishment. “Chief, what’s goin’ on? You saw a ghost or somethin’?”
“Not a ghost. It’s Taylor! I’m sure of it.” Larry’s eyes remained fixed on the dark haired beauty in the store window. “After all this time and the endless searching, I’ve finally found her in that boutique. In London. Where are we exactly?”
“On a side street in the West End, near Mayfair. Lar, don’t jump the gun.” Joe must have seen his desperation. “It could be someone who looks like Taylor. Remember, Interpol didn’t turn anythin’ up after eighteen months. I’m your bro and your friend, not to mention your right-hand man. I’m only lookin’ out for y’.”
Joe’s words faded as Larry’s mind whirled with anticipation. The limousine driver pulled over to the curb in front of the dress shop. Larry’s heart beat faster as he anticipated reuniting with his lost love. He flung open the door and extended his long legs onto the slush-covered sidewalk. The brisk, cold air reddened his cheeks and a light breeze tousled his dark blond hair.
Joe sighed heavily as he followed his longtime friend to the store entrance. A crowd of fans quickly formed. They had caught sight of their American idol. Larry was oblivious to their squeals and cheers. He focused on his sole quest.
The shop doorbell cheerfully chimed announcing Larry’s entrance. All eyes turned toward his commanding, yet boyish stature, and then settled on his sparkling and piercing blue eyes. The dark-haired woman came from the display window as if curious from all the commotion. Her quizzical eyes froze on the good-looking stranger before her. As voices called out requesting autographs, Larry remained silent and mesmerized at the sight of this woman. He tentatively took a step toward her.
“Tay, is that you?” His voice quivered. “I’ve been looking for you for so long. I can’t believe I’ve finally found you.”
“What did you say?” Her words caught in her throat.
“I said ‘Tay’. Aren’t you Taylor?” Doesn’t she recognize me?
“That’s not my name. I’m Tiffany, Tiffany Bradford.” Her eyes held confusion. She shyly extended her hand.
Autograph seekers closed in around him as he sought her hand. Their fingers met briefly. Larry rejoiced in her fleeting touch. Her fingers slipped away. Joe did his best to hold the British fans at bay as they busily tapped the keys of their cell phones and sent messages on social media to spread the news.
His eyes fixed on hers. Larry didn’t hear the fans bombard him with questions and comments.
“Mr. Davis, may I please have your autograph?”
“How long are you staying in the UK?”
“I just love your music!”
“I’ve been a fan of yours for so many years.”
“Are you recording a new song?”
Joe countered the queries in his usual unflappable style. “Mr. Davis is tourin’ the UK for a couple of weeks. A new song is on the horizon. He loves his British fans. Most likely a return visit will be in the distant future.”
Larry’s voice was soft as he spoke to Tiffany. “I’m sorry. You look so much like a woman I knew.” He tilted his head boyishly. “Funny, you don’t sound English—your accent, I mean.”
“I’m not,” she replied. “I’m American. My home is here in London.”
“How about coming to my concert tonight at the Royal Albert Hall?” Larry turned to Joe. “Give Tiffany one of those backstage passes and that reserved ticket you keep in your pocket.”
Joe did as requested and handed the treasured document to Tiffany. Cheers came from the surrounding fans.
“Thank you Mr. Davis …” She fingered her hair. “I don’t know if I’ll be able to attend. Wouldn’t you rather give this to one of your fans here?”
I know you’re Taylor. You have to be! I don’t understand any of this!
“No. It would make me so happy to see you there tonight at the concert.”. He stumbled over his words, “Please say you’ll be there.”
“Maybe I can make it.” Her blue-green eyes looked up at him with an expression of remote recognition.
“Great!” Joy radiated from Larry. “I’ll be looking for you—front row, center seat.”
“Chief,” Joe interjected. “We need to get back to the hotel. You’ve got a press conference to get to.”
“Yeah,” Larry replied as he continued to look at her. “I’ll leave in a moment. Gotta sign a few autographs first.” I know she’s Taylor. It has to be her!
As he signed various pieces of paper, his eyes returned to her at every chance as if drawn to her beauty by a magical force. A small smile peeked from the corners of her mouth and a faint pink glow came to her cheeks.
Larry’s mind went into a whirlwind. Why doesn’t she recognize me? What is wrong with her? This isn’t at all like Taylor!
“C’mon, Chief,” Joe reminded. “We need to go! Can’t be late for the press.”
“Yeah, I hear you.” Larry reached for Tiffany’s hand and gave it a reassuring squeeze. “I’m counting on seeing you tonight at the Albert.” He punctuated his last comment with a smile and wink. “I’ll be disappointed if you’re not there.”
Tiffany looked up at him from beneath her long black lashes. “Maybe. We’ll see.”
Oohs and aahs rang throughout the room. Larry wedged through the throngs of female admirers.
Larry turned briefly at the entrance and called out to Tiffany, “I’ll be looking for you tonight. Don’t forget.” He quickly left, leaving shoppers buzzing about this impromptu visit from the famous American idol.
© 2015 Cynthia B. Ainsworthe
Cynthia B. Ainsworthe writes suspenseful romance. She has won multiple writing awards. Though she writes mostly romance, her short stories cross many genres. She loves animals and is a parent of five poodle children. Ms. Ainsworthe is currently finalizing Forbidden Footsteps book 3, and writing Dangerous Reach book 4 in her Forbidden Series. A lover of culinary arts, Passion in the Kitchen, is a whimsical approach to French cuisine with delicious recipes, a romantic story thread, and luscious photos of shirtless men.