If you are new to Darlene’s Story, here’s the gist: Darlene Whitman always heard that you can pick your friends but not your family. She realizes the lie in this statement when nosy eighty-two-year-old neighbor, Myrtle Crawford, insists on helping unravel the mystery behind the disappearances of her husband and father. Darlene discovers her father’s involvement in illegal cancer drug testing, which is also linked to her husband’s courier business. Her ties to Myrtle are more complicated than she thought, and now, she must piece together the truth before it’s too late to save either of them.
Oh, and Jeff was Darlene’s father’s business partner and pseudo uncle until he faked his death several years ago. They have had several encounters since his “death.”
And now, for the next segment in the story:
As Darlene ate her smothered burrito, she moved Myrtle’s letter to the side so she wouldn’t drip red sauce on it. Her eyes settled on the words for a third time.
I know you lied to me- you have what you needed all along. You must be scared and confused, as you should be. Time is running out for me, and there are a few more things you have to know. The mind is our body’s ultimate protector. To do what you’ll need to, you have to first believe who the monster is and what he’s capable of. Research the owner of his employer. Peruse your mother’s medical records. (Mine will be available to you upon my passing.) Striking similarities…
I believe the suits are insiders on the scheme. Of course, I can’t prove it, but it’s a strong gut feeling. If you need someone to confide in, Jeff is on our side. I’m sure you’ll find it hard to believe, but justice is what he wants, too. Everything you need is in your hands. Every piece is important.
Above all else, please know that I loved you. My heart aches to say goodbye without you at my bedside holding my hand, but I’ve made amends with God and understand this is how it shall be.
Tears welled up once again. Myrtle loved her? Why? Questions tugged at her heart.
She startled when someone slid into the booth seat in front of her. When her gaze traveled up the elbows on the table and saw Jeff Weissman’s face, she choked on her burrito. She dislodged it from her throat with cough and a long swig of Diet Coke.
He leaned forward. “You look like you’ve seen a ghost.” He grinned.
Darlene stifled her shock and faked a smile she hoped exuded the grace of someone who possessed more confidence and courage than she’d ever mustered. Myrtle.
“Haven’t I? You’ve died so many times; I suspect you’re not of this world.”
This is my response to the Trifecta weekly challenge, which is to write a 33 to 333-word response (mine is 332) using the following word/definition: GRACE: (noun) –(a) a charming or attractive trait or characteristic; (b) a pleasing appearance or effect : charm <all the grace of youth — John Buchan>; (c) ease and suppleness of movement or bearing
If you want to read other responses, or try the challenge yourself, click here to view Trifecta’s site. Happy writing (and reading!)
Once again, this is a community-voted challenge, which means that readers have the opportunity to vote on their three favorites by visiting Trifecta’s site after the challenge closes on Thursday, at 8PM Eastern time.
This continuation of Darlene’s Story is still in Darlene’s point of view. Click here for Darlene’s Story page if you want to read the entire piece. Thanks for stopping by!