Excerpt from Still Rock Water:
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The mist swirls in front of me. This time, no periscope vision plagues me. I look down at the slender legs of a fifteen-year-old girl. I'm with Sue Lee already as she balances her few possessions in a basket on top of her head.
She tramps through a provincial town in the never-ending land of China, towards an uncertain future. Nothing to eat for two days except for a tiny bundle of rice wrapped in a banana leaf that her mother packed for her. Several hours ago she drank from a stream beside the road.
Duty calls. Her father sent her to find work to help support her family. Sue Lee struggles to contain her despair at what she will have to do when she gets to the municipality ahead. However, she puts that to one side and looks forward to visiting her aunt before she continues on the last leg of her trek.
Weak and exhausted from her long journey, she reaches the dwelling and plods around to the house to the family entrance. She calls at the door. "Greetings, honourable Aunt."
Her aunt's expression remains stern, but she invites Sue Lee inside the kitchen with a sweep of her arm.
"My father has sent me to the big city to earn money."
Wise and unapproachable, Aunt nods."It's as it should be." Sue Lee gulps water while trying to hide unseemly haste. A bowl of rice appears on the table before her. Between mouthfuls, Sue Lee looks around at the bare shelves.
I recognize the older woman's stiff formality and appeal to her selfish nature. 'Look at this lovely girl. She's strong and loyal. She would work hard with that attitude. She could be a help and support to you in your old age'.
After her bow of thanks over the empty bowl, Sue Lee looks up. The old woman's eyes sparkle. "An employee in my laundry business has retired due to ill health. I can offer you work, washing men's work garments."
"Oh, thank you, honourable aunt." Sue Lee sobs with relief. In an effort to express her thanks, her head lowers over the table.
While I drift away, I watch the aunt's formality dissolve.
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Liliha focused on the moonstone ring. Joy and the wonder of being able to help throbbed with each beat of her heart. She hated to think of the poor child walking on the streets of a city to earn money for her family. Thank goodness that had been avoided.
If you like the idea of communication between minds, you'll like Still Rock Water, THE FIRST novel in the Moonstone series. http://bookgoodies.com/a/B009KNQ4RG
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