I am in the process of publishing Catching Kent on Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords. I have already published Kent Ashton’s Backstory, but I am waiting until Catching Kent is live on B&N before I send out the email to those of you on my new release list. I don’t like to crowd peoples’ inboxes. 🙂
Now for today’s Sunday’s Story Sample. I’m continuing with Kent Ashton’s Backstory and will keep posting it on this blog every Sunday until I have the complete novella up on here.
It wasn’t until Kent and his parents were on their way home in the carriage that the town was abuzz with news of Ann’s disappearance. A man riding a horse hailed the carriage and the driver pulled it to a stop.
“Whatever’s going on?” his mother wondered, fanning herself.
“We’ll find out in a moment,” his father replied as he waited for the footman to open the door so he could lean forward to speak with the man who slid off the horse, his movements indicating that he was in a hurry. “Is something troubling you?” his father asked, his eyebrows furrowed.
“Have you seen Todd Brothers pass by on a wagon with two horses?” the man asked.
It took Kent a minute to realize the man was the Brothers’ butler. He rolled his eyes and settled back in his seat. What did he care what Todd did? If he wanted to go riding through town on a wagon, let him.
Kent’s father shook his head. “We haven’t seen anything of the sort. Have you?” he asked the footman.
“No, sir, I haven’t,” their footman told the butler.
The butler nodded. “Thank you, sirs.”
Before he could return to his horse, Kent’s father called out, “What is this about? Should we be concerned?”
“There was a note. Todd is running off with Miss Statesman,” the butler replied.
“With who?” Kent asked, his heart stopping as the cold hand of panic wrapped around it.
“Ann, you fool,” his father muttered then turned his attention to the butler. “Where did they go?”
“Miss Statesman wrote they’re heading out West so he can be a farmer. That’s all we know.”
“Unfortunately, we haven’t seen either one of them,” Kent’s father replied.
With a sigh, he nodded. “Thank you.”
As he returned to his horse, Kent’s father motioned for the footman to close the door and settled back in his seat.
“Can it be true?” his mother asked, her eyes wide.
His father shrugged. “I suppose so.”
“But why would Miss Statesman leave Virginia?” she pressed.
“How would I know?” His father turned his gaze to Kent. “Now you see that Rebecca is the right lady for you. Ann’s feelings for you were never genuine if she’s been planning to run off with Todd Brothers this whole time.”
Kent wanted to protest that Ann hadn’t been planning to go away with Todd, that this was something that happened because he broke her heart. There was no denying the pain in her eyes whenever she saw him with Rebecca, and his father insisted they appear in as many places together as possible. All he’d done was add insult to injury, and in the end, it drove her into Todd’s arms.
I’ll never love him, she once told him, no matter how much he or my parents wish it. I only want to marry you. Promise me you’ll do everything you can to make sure we end up together?
And why wouldn’t Todd take her? It was obvious he harbored feelings for her. He’d willingly taken advantage of her moment of weakness and took her out of Virginia so she’d have no recourse than to be with him. By removing her from her family and friends, he had selfishly claimed her all for himself.
Kent’s hands formed fists. How could Todd do that to her? If he truly loved her, he wouldn’t have preyed upon her weakness. When Ann realized the mistake she’d made, would it be too late? Would she be forced to be with him for the rest of her life, living with a man she didn’t love?
As the carriage moved forward, his father smiled in satisfaction. “You see, Kent. Things have turned out for the best. You were meant to be with Rebecca. Fate has dealt kindly with you.”
Kent bit back his reply. Turning his gaze to the window, he ignored his father and mother the rest of the way home.