The Bodice Rips on Page 25 (Part 22)
The Bodice Rips on Page 25 is a tongue-in-cheek contemporary and regency romance in a draft state. Warning! The ending of this story about love will not be revealed!
Even though she missed the hustle and bustle of New York, Jane found an affinity with the people of the rural villages. They reminded her of her family in Iowa–with strange accents.
Each afternoon she walked to town, chatting with the grocer and the lady who ran the flower shop. She’d stop at the tea shop and buried her nose in romance after romance. Between the town and the reading Sophie’s and Jonathan’s world began to seep into her bones.
And she began to write again. She smiled as the words flew from her fingers and the story came alive. Two weeks before her planned departure from England, she sent the manuscript off to Sheila.
It was still at the publisher.
Well, that was fine, Jane thought as she packed her books and souvenirs to ship back to the States. At least the thing hadn’t come boomeranging back with a rejection.
She eyed the phone. Only one thing left to do before leaving England.
She put it off another day. Instead, she picked up her newly acquired walking stick and took off across the fields.
Somehow, the August fields in England seemed brighter than her childhood. For the first time, she felt at peace with herself. She’d worked like a demon all summer, writing and rewriting. She’d taken romance classes online and even attended a few workshops in London.
Jane stopped to snap a few more pictures–memories of her time of change.
Should she stay in England? It had become home.
No. No more hiding. She strode off toward the hill in the distance thinking about the phone call she still had to make.
After her meal of leftover roast and potatoes, she sat on the couch and finally picked up the phone.
“Michael, this is Jane,” she said after he’d picked up.
“What an unexpected pleasure,” he said. “Where are you? You sound so clear.”
Jane laughed. “Yes. I’ve been here two and a half months.”
“And you’re only calling now?” The dismay in his voice was real.
This was why she hadn’t wanted to call. “Yes.”
“When are you leaving? Can I see you?”
She remembered her vow. “I leave in two weeks, unfortunately. It would be good to see you. There are things to say.”
“Yes. There are.”
“Saturday?” she asked, mindfull of work schedules. “The Tate?”
“Sounds sublime,” he said. “Can you be here by ten? A few moldy old paintings and then a bite to eat?”
She laughed again.
“It’s good to hear you laugh, Jane. You were so sad.”
“I’ll tell you all about it,” she said.