Wednesday, October 21, 2015

5 Days of Angel Island Day 3: Waiting for the Storm Excerpt

This week is the release of The Complete Angel Island Series, a box set that includes all three of my Angel Island companion novels, Waiting for the Storm, After the Storm, and Take Them by Storm. For this week only you can get the set for just $2.99 - that's all three books for the price of one! If you're curious about the series and haven't started it yet, or if you've read one but not the other two, now would be a great time to give them a try!

To celebrate the release of the box set, I'm dedicating this week to posts about the series. On Monday I kicked things off with fun facts about the series, yesterday I shared pictures inspired by the books, and today I'm sharing an excerpt from the first book in the series, Waiting for the Storm.

Waiting for the Storm is an emotional story that deals with some fairly heavy issues, so I tried to add in humour where I could to lighten the mood and keep things even. I had a lot of fun writing this scene. I hope you enjoy it!

When we got out to the car, Ezra helped Adam into the backseat and ordered him to buckle up. Without a word to me, he opened my door and waited for me to get in before closing it and going around to the driver’s side.

I watched Ezra’s face as he started the car and pulled onto the road. It seemed like he was purposely trying not to look at me. I angled so I could see Adam in the backseat; his eyes were closed, and I thought he must have drifted to sleep, but he called out, “Hey man, turn the radio on. You know I like my tunes.”

Ezra finally glanced at me, shooting me an apologetic half-smile. He flipped the radio on and turned the volume up. The sounds of Coldplay’s ‘Paradise’ filled the car.

“Ah man, this is, like, my favourite song!” Adam shouted, leaning forward and gripping the headrests. “Para-para-paradise! Such a great song.” He leaned back in his seat and continued to sing along, his voice loud and off-key.

My lips started twitching. I couldn’t help it. This was quite possibly the most bizarre situation I’d ever been in.

“Don’t you dare start laughing,” Ezra told me quietly.

I peeked at him from under my lashes. He was staring straight ahead at the road, but his lips were twitching too.

“I’m not sure I can help it,” I answered, my voice shaking slightly with suppressed laughter.

The song changed and ‘Mysterious Ways’ by U2 came on.

“No, this is my favourite song,” Adam said. He leaned forward again and suddenly his head was right between mine and Ezra’s.

I was so startled, a laugh burst from my mouth. Adam started to laugh along with me, and his cluelessness made me laugh harder.

“What’s so funny, man?” he asked after a minute. “Oops, sorry, lady,” he amended, smiling drunkenly.

I shook my head. “I really don’t know.”

“Put your seatbelt on, Adam,” Ezra said.

Adam slid back and I heard his seatbelt click into place. He continued singing, giving it everything he had, waving his arms around and rocking to the music. I soon discovered that every song was Adam’s favourite, and each time he said it I had to bite back another laugh.

Ezra didn’t speak, but we kept exchanging glances every time Adam hit a particularly sour note. He would cringe and look apologetic, as if it were his fault his friend was butchering song after song. I had no idea what was going on, but I didn’t really care.

We seemed to drive the entire length of the island before we pulled into the driveway of a small two-story house. The porch light was on, but the inside of the house was dark.

“I’d invite you and your lady friend in, man, but…you know how it goes,” Adam said, struggling with his seatbelt. He finally got it undone and he reached up to hand something to Ezra. He opened the door and stumbled out, and a second later he was leaning in my open window. With his face so close to mine, his beer breath made my eyes water.

“It was great seeing you again,” he told me, a goofy smile plastered on his face. He pointed at Ezra and thumped his chest right over his heart. “This guy…Ezra’s the best. He’s my guardian angel, you know? You two treat each other right, you hear?” He screwed up his face and blinked his eyes rapidly, and after a second I realized he was trying to wink, but he was too drunk to figure it out.

Suppressing yet another laugh, I winked back at him. “Good night, Adam.”

He waved and staggered off toward his house. He stumbled on the front steps, and called out something that sounded like, “I’m good!” When he had the door open, he waved again, then disappeared inside.

Without a word, Ezra put the car in drive and pulled back onto the road.

“Well…” I ventured. “That was interesting.”

A ghost of a smile touched Ezra’s lips, but he simply shook his head.

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