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Heart's Chalice
Heart's Chalice
Amazon.com Amazon.com
Powell's Books Powell's Books

Thomma gives an overview of the book:

As a young woman, Laurel misinterpreted a psychic vision, causing the death of her first and only love. She has lived with guilt ever since. Two decades later, struggling to free herself from a toxic marriage, she's pulled to an alternate reality where her beloved still lives. There, she's the dead one, and he and their children are grieving for her. When she tries to contact them, they think she's a ghost. She desperately wants to remain in her family's reality and connect with them. By enjoying a long, happy life with the man she loves, she can rectify her mistake and free herself from her guilt. But she's running out of time. Every shift between realities damages her body further. And her soon-to-be-ex will stop at nothing to shackle her to a life she despises.
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As a young woman, Laurel misinterpreted a psychic vision, causing the death of her first and only love. She has lived with guilt ever since. Two decades later, struggling to free herself from a toxic marriage, she's pulled to an alternate reality where her beloved still lives. There, she's the dead one, and he and their children are grieving for her. When she tries to contact them, they think she's a ghost.

She desperately wants to remain in her family's reality and connect with them. By enjoying a long, happy life with the man she loves, she can rectify her mistake and free herself from her guilt. But she's running out of time. Every shift between realities damages her body further. And her soon-to-be-ex will stop at nothing to shackle her to a life she despises.

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What a trap. Not just for Laurel, but for Harry, too. If only she could find the strength to set them both free. 

But not tonight. She was too tired. 

She flopped back down on the bed, her jaw sore from clenching her teeth. How she'd love to have Willoughby purring beside her! She pictured Will curled up in her office chair, missing her as much as she missed him. 

Harry lay rigidly, a shadowy lump. He's as miserable as I am. Desperation filled her throat like bile. She'd never get to sleep. No wonder she was perennially exhausted. There had been too many nights of staring, wide-eyed, at the dark. 

Tonight, though, the dark shifted. The shadows, including Harry, retreated and squeezed themselves into the periphery of her sight. Nate's face took shape, front and center. In her dreams, he had always been eighteen. But now, he looked to be her age: thirty-eight. His dark hair, which he wore in a leonine cut, was threaded with gray at his temples. Fine lines framed his eyes, and his cheeks were wet with tears. 

His lips moved, and she heard, dimly, his voice. “Laurel.” 

Why would a ghost age? It didn't matter. Locking gazes with Nate was life itself, even if he was dead. 

“I need you,” he said. “More than ever.” 

“I need you, too,” she whispered. “I've always needed you. God, I'm so sorry I left you. It wasn't what I truly wanted to do.” For twenty years, she'd wanted to tell him that. Was she telling him, though? Or was she just telling something inside herself? 

“Oh, man,” Nate said. “This is too real. Oh, if only you were really here.” 

Where was “here?” Was it the antique room in her mind in which both of them, finally, had aged? Perhaps her ideal of love—Nate—was, like her hope, a casualty of her cynicism. Yet gazing at Nate's face, none of that mattered. Laurel maintained eye contact with him as though both their lives—whether spectral or actual—depended on it. 

“You can see,” he said. “You're not a blind ass like me.” What? If Nate wanted to see an ass, he should look not in the mirror but at Harry. 

Or at Laurel, for that matter. 

“You might have seen it coming sooner than Sunny did,” he said. “You could have warned...” Chilled by nameless dread, she opened her mouth to ask what he was talking about, but Nate's face faded into a light pencil sketch and disappeared.

 

thomma-lyn-grindstaff's picture

Destiny rarely gives a woman a second chance at love, especially not with a man who died twenty years ago.

About Thomma

My novel Mirror Blue, a literary love story, was released by Black Lyon Publishing on May 8, 2009.

On October 17, 2011, I released three ebooks through Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, and Smashwords. They include Heart's Chalice (novel: dark,...

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