|LAYLA & HER DOG, SOLSTICE|
CHASING THE LEGACY
E-book specially priced at
only 99 cents!
Buy now at Rogue Phoenix Press!
Sunday, July 19, 2015
A gutteral growl drew Layla's attention. She turned, meeting the eyes of a tattered brown dog slunk low to the ground and watching her warily.
"I know how you feel." Layla spoke softly and turned her attention back toward the water. A pair of ducks drifted by with several babies following in their wake. She felt no fear of the dog; simply compassion for another creature struggling to find a way into someone's heart.
A few minutes later, the woman returned and held out a bag. "Looks like you could use a good meal yourself."
To her chagrin, Layla's belly rumbled as the salty warm smell of burgers and fries swirled out of the bag.
Yet when Layla held out a bill to pay for the food, the woman shook her head. "Just don't dump her somewhere. Make sure she has a good home."
Layla's gaze connected with the woman's. Her eyes held the same sad wisdom Layla felt in her heart. A longing. Yet a fear too. Of wanting too much, and watching it be snatched away again. "Thank you."
The dog's tail wagged in a ragged plume as drool dripped from her mouth. "Come on, girl, let's go home."
Where did you find the dog?"
"Actually, she found me. The restaurant owner said she's a stray. So I thought I'd just--you know..."
"Take her home with you."
The admiration and respect in Grady's eyes looped and swirled in Layla's belly like a roller coaster. "Well, she's not so big, so she can't eat much, right?"
"Say, do you mind giving me a ride back to Halo?" Grady asked. "I told the others to go on home..."
Layla laughed as lightness filled her heart. Had she ever been as guileless as this man? She didn't know how someone who had been through as much as Grady surely had been could still look for the best in people. But her heart lightened when he turned that gaze on her.
"Just watch out for my dog--she might drool all over you."
Layla gathered Grady's laughter in her heart and held it close, letting it drift over her body like the sun on a summer's day. If only for the next few hours, she vowed to let joy into her life in the form of Grady O'Shea.
(Excerpts from Chasing the Legacy, copyright Genene Valleau writing as Genie Gabriel)