Prologue to The Catalyst: an unconventional romantic novel.
Sunny Smith is running from her memories. It’s what she does. Settling in a beautiful but remote area of Cornwall she thinks she has found the perfect place to help heal the emotional wounds left by her husband’s untimely death.
She believes she has found a sort of freedom but her peace of mind becomes threatened by Jimmy Fisher. Jimmy is an artist. He is also a serial seducer. Although she has been warned about his past, Sunny finds she needs what he offers.
Jimmy, too, is unable to remain as detached as he usually prefers to be and unwittingly leads Sunny towards savage violence and an overwhelming guilt. A guilt that demands the ultimate expression of remorse.
The Catalyst is a story of a passionate love affair that endures despite everything ... although not quite as you might expect.
Prologue: an excerpt from The Catalyst.
The sea, as usual, was inscrutable. It hid things, especially things that should be not be beneath the sea. Before her, unseen, lay submerged homes and forests, ships and aeroplanes and deaths of many kinds; but still the sea dissembled, putting on a brave show of innocence this bright morning.
Already the sun was beginning to rise over the far headland across the bay, dancing a pathway of beaten bronze across the placid water before kissing her bare toes in homage as she stood on the edge of the rocks. It was a blessing, a sure sign that she had chosen the right time; she liked the idea of being blessed by the sun on this day of all days.
She brushed back her hair as it clung to her cheek, oblivious of the dampness of her clothes sticking to her sweating skin, trying not to think too hard about what she had to do. She knew the water would be icy cold but she had read somewhere that drowning induced a warm sleepiness. Strangely, it was a comforting idea and she had not wanted to question the fact that no one could know this for sure.
Moving forward she stepped into the water, resolutely keeping her chin up as the cold fingers of the sea crept up her legs. The chill struck her stomach and moved up her chest as she walked, leaving her shocked and gasping for breath, but still she continued to wade towards the sun. Tiny currents began to pluck playfully, as soft as fish’s kisses, at her feet and legs and she felt her first tremor of fear as the water reached her throat.
She knew the time had come to let it cover her head or turn back to the shore and safety. It was time to commit to death. With only the briefest of hesitations, she closed her eyes and sank beneath the surface, trying to ignore her panic as her ears filled with the sound of rushing water. It was still not too late; she could still go back to the land.
Instantly a fleeting montage of painful emotions filled her head, bringing back to her all that had happened and she knew she would not go back. It was time to breathe in the sea and return her body to an element that so long ago had been nurturing but was now so alien.
Giving herself up to the insistence of the current she allowed it to wrap its arms around her and sweep her off her feet, feeling herself drowning in the terrible beauty of the sea.
Categorisation of The Catalyst.
This is a work of romantic fiction which does contain some sex scenes, which I hope are tasteful. They are also totally in context, for where is love without sex? I have been genuine with these scenes and have tried to avoid predictable clichés and writing sex either by rote or for ’shock and awe’.
What this book is not is the much vaunted erotica which appears to be a big seller right now. Good writing and an absorbing story was all I was aiming for as I feel that writing ‘mommy porn’ could have led to extreme embarrassment for my children as well as myself.
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