Hi everyone. Today, I am delighted to host fellow author and friend Marcia Meara, who is showcasing her latest book, The Light. I’ll let her tell you all about it >>>
Thanks so much for having me here today, Harmony! I’m truly excited to be sharing an excerpt from my fourth Wake-Robin Ridge Book, The Light, with your followers, and I hope they’ll be intrigued. Rabbit came along in the second book of my Wake-Robin Ridge romantic suspense series and usurped the entire thing. Happily, my readers seem to love him more than all my characters, so I think he did me a favor.
Excerpt from The Light: Midway into Chapter 2
“MA’AM? CAN WE TALK NOW?”
SETTING: THE WISEMAN’S VIEW OVERLOOK
Rabbit has convinced his mama and daddy to take him to see if the infamous Brown Mountain lights will make an appearance on Halloween night.
By the time full dark fell, Branna was asleep in her backpack carrier, her head resting on Mac’s shoulder. Rabbit had stopped pacing and stood leaning against the stone parapet, eyes glued to the east toward Brown Mountain.
A few stars twinkled above, and I had turned on our small, LED camping lantern, but overall, the night was inky-black and almost unnaturally quiet—until the growl of an approaching vehicle broke the shivery, anticipatory silence. A few minutes later, a young man lugging photography equipment trotted into view, slightly out of breath, even though the short, paved path was an easy walk from the parking lot. He came to an abrupt halt when he spotted us.
“Oh. Hi. I didn’t expect anyone else to be here on Halloween, especially with a kid.” He glanced at Rabbit and shrugged. “No candy here, I mean.”
Rabbit eyed the newcomer then offered a friendly grin. “We thought Halloween would be the most fun night to see the lights. Is that why you came?”
It shows how much both Mac and I had learned to trust Rabbit’s gifts—he’d become some sort of litmus test for strangers. If he relaxes around them, we tend to do so, as well. In this case, the young, probably college-aged man smiled back and introduced himself as Austin Dupree. He confirmed my guess when he added, “I’m planning to do a dissertation on unexplained phenomena in North Carolina, and these lights are at the top of my list, so I come here a lot. You don’t mind if I set up my cameras, do you?”
Mac and I didn’t mind a bit, and Rabbit was more excited than ever. He watched Austin’s every move, staying well out of the way but making comments now and then and asking the occasional question.
“That there’s the biggest camera I ever seen. Why’s it so long?”
“Telephoto lens. It will let me zoom right in on anything we see. The second one is for video.”
“You get any pictures on other visits?”
“Nope. Only managed to see the lights once, and they were gone almost before I realized what I was looking at. I’m hoping tonight’s my lucky night.”
“Me, too! I really wanna see ’em, an’ it’d be pretty interestin’ to be here when you finally get you some good pictures.”
Mac was following the conversation with obvious curiosity. “Have you tried any of the other viewing areas?”
“Only Brown Mountain Overlook, but I like this one better. I think if I’m ever going to capture the lights on film, this is where it’ll happen.”
“Do you have any theories on what the lights could be?” I asked.
“No, ma’am. I’m trying not to form any preconceived ideas. I want to be open to whatever the actual images suggest.”
Whoa! He ma’amed me. I liked it when our son did it, having been raised, myself, in an environment where children were expected to show that courtesy to adults. But Austin was a grown man. And he just ma’amed me! Was he being exceptionally polite, or was I getting that old?
Mac looked away, biting his lip as he tried not to laugh at my consternation. It seemed to be a struggle for him, and I was debating whether to be more upset by the ma’aming or by my husband’s obvious amusement. I was leaning toward the latter when Rabbit’s shout interrupted everything.
AND LOOK WE did! Goosebumps rose along my arms as I stared, all else forgotten. Far away, over the flat ridge of Brown Mountain, a dozen or more orbs floated and bobbed in the darkness. Most were white, but a few were blue or green, hovering over the ridge.
The soft whirr of Austin’s videocam was accompanied by a rapid-fire click, click, click, as he snapped stills, one after the other, whispering “Yeah, yeah. Oh, yeah!”
The rest of us gaped in open-mouthed wonder, hardly able to breathe as the mysterious lights floated in the distance. As we watched, more and more joined in the display. While I wasn’t quite ready to believe the lights were anything paranormal, I also wasn’t buying a single online explanation Rabbit told us about.
I’d seen ball lightning. This wasn’t it. Nor did it look like it could be lights from passing trains. Whatever it was, it was beautiful, and mesmerizing, and I wished I understood what was happening.
“I don’t,” Rabbit said when I told him that. “It’s the not-knowing that makes it so special.”
Mac sided with Rabbit. “He’s right. Understanding what it is just might make it less fun.”
“I thought you guys were all about solving mysteries?”
“This here mystery ain’t ’bout someone who needs our help, like Sissy Birdwell’s mama did. It’s just somethin’ beautiful an’ sorta spooky, an’ I don’t need to know what it is to like it.”
“What about people who think this might be a sign of something bad, like dangerous aliens from another planet?”
“Aw, Mama, I ain’t feelin’ nothin’ like that at all.”
Mac tilted his head, studying him in the dim light. “You can sense something about these orbs from all the way over here?”
“I can’t say what they are, Daddy. I ain’t never seen nor felt anything like ’em before. But what I do feel seems natural, an’ not like nothin’ bad. It feels like somethin’ that belongs. Like plants, an’ trees, an’ animals do.”
Mac nodded. “So, a normal part of the environment and not something manmade?”
Rabbit stared at the lights again, frowning in concentration, then turned back to his daddy with a smile. “Yeah, like that. Maybe we don’t know what they are, but that don’t mean they ain’t natural. I reckon there’s lots of things in this here world we haven’t figgered out, right? Least, not yet. An’ whatever causes these lights don’t feel like nothin’ that should worry us. Might be they’re one more beautiful thing that’s part of these here mountains, an’ we should enjoy ’em just for that.”
Austin’s hesitant inquiry interrupted our discussion. “Excuse me? Am I missing something, here?”
Mac and I exchanged a quick glance, but before either of us could think of an explanation, Rabbit answered the young man. “It’s only that sometimes I know things like this here, even if it don’t seem like I should. That’s all.”
Austin’s brow wrinkled, then he gasped, and his eyes flew wide. “Oh, my God! You have it! The Sight, I mean.”
When not writing or blogging, she spends her time gardening, and enjoying the surprising amount of wildlife that manages to make a home in her suburban yard. She enjoys nature. Really, really enjoys it. All of it! Well, almost all of it, anyway. From birds, to furry critters, to her very favorites, snakes. The exception would be spiders, which she truly loathes, convinced that anything with eight hairy legs is surely up to no good. She does not, however, kill spiders anymore, since she knows they have their place in the world. Besides, her husband now handles her Arachnid Catch and Release Program, and she’s good with that.
Spiders aside, the one thing Marcia would like to tell each of her readers is that it’s never too late to make your dreams come true. If, at the age of 69, she could write and publish a book (and thus fulfill 64 years of longing to do that very thing), you can make your own dreams a reality, too. Go for it! What have you got to lose?
Marcia has published seven novels, two novellas, and one book of poetry to date, all of which are available on Amazon:
You can reach Marcia via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on the following social media sites:
I haven’t read the Wake-Robin Ridge series yet, but I do have book one on my ereader waiting for me to get to it. After reading and enjoying the Rivervend series, I’m looking forward to this one. Best of luck, Marcia. It’s been wonderful having you visit today 🙂