#52weeks52stories “The Sweetest Days”

chest and rose

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#52weeks52stories: Week 28

Word prompt: reunion

Word count – 813;

Reading time – 2 min, 10 sec.

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Moira exited I-94 and rolled to a stop at the traffic signal at the end of the off-ramp.

She drummed her fingers against the steering wheel, indecision tugging at her.

Turning left would take her back to the highway, her hotel, and home in two hours.

Turning right would lead her to the Marriott Hotel… and her thirtieth high school class reunion.

The last thing Moira Lambert wanted to do was attend her class reunion.

She turned right anyway.

High school hadn’t been unpleasant for the homecoming queen and class valedictorian, it just didn’t have the same meaning for her as it did her classmates.

Moira was proud of her accomplishments and honored to be so well-thought of, but everything changed near the end of her senior year and then the only thing that mattered was graduating and leaving Flanders, Indiana.

It’s not too late, Lambert. You could grab your things from the hotel and be home before midnight.

Before she could respond to her own heeding, Moira heard Alexander’s quips.

“Don’t focus on the pain, honey-bunny. God knows we’d never smile if we only remembered the bad times.”

Her pursed lips relaxed into a bittersweet smile. She continued on as though Alexander Lambert was right there guiding her.

She pulled up to valet park in front of the Marriott Hotel and stepped out of her Qx50 accepting her claim stub from the young Latino man who’d opened her door. She thanked him with a smile and headed for the entrance, pretending not to notice the look her valet exchanged with two other young men standing at the valet stand.

She wasn’t angry or offended. Moira knew far too women in her age group who thought nothing of bedding young men half their age and it didn’t matter if they were valets, wait staff or occupied an office across the hall. Moira Lambert didn’t judge. She just wasn’t in that group.

As she entered the hotel, large metallic green signs with yellow glitter text directed members of the Taft High School Class of 1988 to the Grand Ballroom on the lower level.

Moira smirked while walking past the sign.

Kat Volker still had an obsession with glitter.

Approaching the escalator bay, Moira’s steps slowed.

This was the first reunion she’d attended without Alex.

This was the first time she’d done anything other than work since losing her husband of twenty-five years. She knew he’d be disappointed in her.

Like Moira, Alexander Lambert was going through the motions of living when they met on the Purdue University campus.

Tragedy touched his senior year of high also when his mother lost her battle with breast cancer. His misery deepened when he had to move in with his father and stepmother.

Catina Lambert hated him for being a constant reminder Gil Lambert was ever involved with a woman other than her. Her lies and scheming kept the Lambert men at odds so much, Alexander applied for early enrollment to Purdue to get away from the Lambert home.

Melancholy washed over her as the escalator carried her down.

Moira knew she’d met a kindred soul and told Alexander about her parents’ reaction when her older brother, Kevin, came out to them after his college graduation.

Big Abraham Jennings had balked at his only son being a fairy, and Genova Jefferson Jennings knew the Flanders African Methodist Church would shun them all.

Moira stayed at her brother’s side, holding his hand, ashamed of her parents for the first time in her life.

But it wouldn’t be the last.

Moira could see the reception area outside the Grand Ballroom was filling up and took stock of her appearance in the mirrored wall as the escalator took her to the lower level of the Marriott Hotel.

She looked good.

The streaks of gray on the left side of her head gave her a mature look without being matronly. They ran through her soft, brown curls from her temple to her shoulder.

The knee-length, purple silk wrap-dress complimented her hour-glass figure and Moira didn’t even lament the illusive twelve pounds that considered her hips a permanent home.

She stepped off the escalator and approached the registration table to the left of the ballroom entrance, and her first smile of the evening was genuine.

“Moira Jennings!”

A tall, thin woman with snow white hair leaped up from the table and ran to greet Moira, pulling her into a tight hug.

“Oh. I’m sorry, I keep forgetting. It’s Moira Lambert.”

Moira pulled back wearing a big grin. “Mrs. Petry, you know I’ll always answer to whatever you call me.”

The retired history teacher beamed. “Still my best… and favorite student.”

Gayla Petry pulled her former student close for another tight hug.

“It is good to see you, my dear. I’m so glad you decided to come.”

Moira chuckled. “I am too, I think.”

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Thanks for reading! Stop in next week for the conclusion to The Sweetest Days.

©2018 Felicia Denise, All Rights Reserved

Camp NaNo Update Day #14

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I have nothing against deadlines.

They are necessary for organization, to accomplish tasks on time, and to move forward.

I’m a fan of deadlines and don’t believe life works well without them.

I have nothing against writing. How could I? I’ve been jotting down poetry and prose since I was nine.

Writing and deadlines work well together.

Most of the time.

Writing and deadlines disconnect for me when I add in another factor… chronic illness.

Missed Deadlines

It’s difficult to make plans and schedules when you have no idea what each day will hold. Will the pain level be tolerable? How much mobility will I have? Will my thinking be slowed due to brain fog?

So, I’ve stopped trying to make plans.

Now I make game plans and strategies.

If I can’t write, I can read. If I can’t read, I can edit. If I can’t edit, I can outline. If I can’t outline, I can search out art and images, check out new tools for writing and publishing, or work on my blogs.

I’ve taken my obstacles and made them challenges. No one likes to lose a challenge, but sometimes I do and a loss makes me push harder through the next challenge.

So while I still may not be able to say Sins of the Mother will release on April 3, 2019, I keep moving forward, closer to the time when I can publish dates.

Working through illness is my challenge. For others, it could be varying job obligations, multiple jobs, or having to travel frequently. I have several friends who are in school and try to set writing deadlines after midterms and exams. They’re still perfecting their systems.

But without a doubt, writers struggle most with meeting familial obligations, whether it’s spouses and children, elderly parents, or fur babies. It’s easy to get overwhelmed… and do nothing.

It doesn’t have to be that way.

Make obstacles and disadvantages positive challenges and accomplishments and meeting deadlines will become less daunting and effortless.

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Day 14 word count – 26,986

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©2018 Felicia Denise, All rights Reserved

Song Lyric Sunday | “Breakout” – Swing Out Sister

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is “break.”

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From the British act Swing Out Sister’s 1986 debut album It’s Better to Travel, the single Breakout was a hit that made many segments of the music industry sit up and take notice.

The single reached the number four position in the UK in the autumn of 1986, and rose to number six on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US and number one on the Adult Contemporary in the US in 1987. The song also resulted in a Grammy Award nomination for Best Pop Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group.

The single was written by the group’s three members,  and performed while the group was still a trio. It was one of their biggest hits, and the song most closely associated with the act. In the US, Breakout remains a staple of adult contemporary and smooth jazz radio station playlists.

It’s a fun video with band members goofing around as they make a dress for Corinne.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection on Nesie’s Place.

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

Breakout

by Swing Out Sister

Written by

And breakout

When explanations make no sense
When every answer’s wrong
You’re fighting with lost confidence
All expectations gone

The time has come to make or break
Move on, don’t hesitate
And breakout

Don’t stop to ask
And now you’ve found a break to make at last
You’ve got to find a way
Say what you want to say
Breakout

When situations never change
Tomorrow looks unsure
Don’t leave your destiny to chance
What are you waiting for
The time has come to make your break
Breakout

Don’t stop to ask
And now you’ve found a break to make at last
You’ve got to find a way
Say what you want to say
Breakout…

Don’t stop to ask
Now you’ve found a break to make at last
You’ve got to find a way
Say what you want to say
Breakout

Some people stop at nothing
If you’re searching for something
Lay down the law
Shout out for more
Breakout and shout
Day in day out
Breakout

Breakout

Don’t stop to ask
And now you’ve found a break to make at last
You’ve got to find a way
Say what you want to say
And breakout

Don’t stop to ask
And now you’ve found a break to make at last
You’ve got to find a way
Say what you want to say
And breakout…

(Don’t) Lay down the law (stop)
Shout out for more (to ask)
Breakout and shout day in day out
Ooh, breakout

Breakout

Breakout

Lay down the law
Shout out for more
Breakout and shout day in day out

Compiled from Genius Lyrics, YouTube, Wikipedia, and Google.