Young Adult Author Laura Elliott has a new release!
An excerpt from THE STORYTELLERS by Laura A. H. Elliott:
THE STORYTELLER: Professor Alex Abernathy
THE STORY: Turn Around
Annabelle choked back her tears and sipped her cosmopolitan with a smile, trying not to give away the fact she was certain her marriage was over, even as her husband charmed her best friend, Melissa, by regaling another of his adventure stories—something about the last mountain Blake had climbed.
All she could think about was the number of years they’d spent together and the fact that they’d gotten married so young no one ever thought it would work out. No one but Annabelle. She was in love with Blake once. Deeply in love. She couldn’t put her finger on when it faded. When love seemed to go from tolerance to distancing and now abandonment. When she’d have to fight back tears in public. Always being sure to tuck a Kleenex away, just in case. She never knew what would trigger her tears. Most of the time, it was the sound in his voice when he’d contradict what she’d say and add his two cents in a tone that let her know he was always right. She had no idea when he started to see her the way he did. He did what he could to make sure Annabelle wasn’t certain of anything. But Annabelle was certain of one thing––Blake didn’t see the real her. And sadder still, maybe he never had.
“You’ve got to be one of the best storytellers I know. The best. How’d you get to be so good?” Melissa said, standing a little too close to Blake, not that Annabelle cared anymore.
Annabelle knew something was wrong but hadn’t put all the pieces together yet. She’d been on the receiving end of one of his most uncharming qualities, manipulation. She never knew when he’d attack. It wasn’t physical. The attacks were always about her sensibilities, and for the past year, they grew more and more personal.
“Annabelle?” Blake said like a parent scolding a child.
“Yes?” Annabelle said soft and low, knowing he’d be on to entertaining the next beautiful girl as soon as he knew he had her attention.
“Melissa just asked you a question. Honestly, you live in your own little world.” He patted Melissa on the back and made his way across the room to where the men had gathered by one of the large circular tables. Charity events were where he really shined. He liked to shine. It was one of the things Annabelle had loved most about him.
“Want something from the bar?” Melissa said.
Annabelle shook her head. Melissa knew what every woman knew. It was hard to let go of Blake once he had you in his sights.
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