The audiobook version of A DEAD GUY AT THE SUMMERHOUSE is almost done! I’m so excited! ~bounce bounce Kiki poinging~
Here’s an excerpt from deep in the book. In this scene, Mitch, a 17-year-old orphan, who has been hired to look after elderly Miss Hardesty’s dogs, is talking to Corrie, the maid, and Eleanor, Miss Hardesty’s niece. Corrie thinks Mitch is possessed by the guy who died at the summerhouse.
Two Crazy Girls
excerpt from A DEAD GUY AT THE SUMMERHOUSE
by Marian Allen
“I’ll be glad to see you any time, Miss Eleanor,” I said, with firm subservience. “My name is Mitch Franklin.”
I wanted to reach back and slap Corrie so hard her teeth would rattle. I was ashamed of myself, even as I thought that: Corrie couldn’t help how she was any more than Miss Eleanor could help herself. Two crazy girls up here, and nobody to keep them from feeding each other’s nuttiness but The Dragon Lady. “Right now, why don’t we go back to the house? Your Aunt Mary would worry, if she knew you were out here. This is a sad place.”
Corrie went to Eleanor’s other side. “Not anymore.” Her eyes shone at me and I forgot to feel sorry for her.
“Will you shut up?” I snapped. “You told her I’m him, didn’t you? You saw me come back here, and you brought her out to meet me, didn’t you? Only not me, him.”
Corrie’s happiness crumpled; she seemed to draw into herself. “I’m sorry! I thought it would be all right. Eleanor has to know!”
Eleanor shook with sobs.
“Now look,” I said to Corrie. “You’ve got her worse. Why don’t you just lay off it for a while? — Miss Eleanor, come on back to the house with me.”
“Oh, no!” said Eleanor. “She mustn’t see you! She’d be so angry!”
“It’s all right, Miss Eleanor,” I said. “I’m not the person you think I am. Corrie is mixed up. I’m Mitch Franklin. I’m very pleased to meet you.” I held out my hand, just as if she were a club lady bringing used crayons for the arts-and-crafts room. Eleanor’s crying quietened and stopped. She wiped her face on the tail of her fuzzy sweater. Timidly, she took my hand.
“He’s gone, isn’t he?” she asked me, wistfully.
“Yes, ma’am. He’s gone.”
Corrie drew breath, but I glared her to silence. I gathered up the ends of the dogs’ leashes and looped them around my wrist. If they got away from me again, they’d have to take my hand with them.
“Let’s go on back, now,” I said.
“Albert,” Corrie said, from behind me. Whether she was talking at me or at the grave, I neither knew nor cared.
Just in case you should want to buy a copy of the book, it’s available in print from independent bookstores through IndieBound and from Amazon in print and for Kindle. The audiobook will be out Real Soon Now. You can also read the first chapter on my Dead Guy page.
A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: A character is mistaken for somebody else and has difficulty convincing anybody of reality.