Author & Book Coach, wife, mother, adventure-seeker.
BA in English from Colorado College & MFA from the University of Melbourne
Writing here is Fiction & Non-Fiction
Find me on Twitter & IG @mclancyauthor
Just Let Me Die Here (A Serialized Novel) 20
The morning sun hits the mountains outside my window. What I thought was beautiful just a day ago is now a harsh reminder of the time that has passed since I last saw Millie. I don’t go downstairs for breakfast. I’m not hungry. I try to imagine wanting food again and my stomach churns in revolt. I feel the sick burn the back of my throat. I don’t need food. I need my daughter.
Just Let Me Die Here (A Serialized Novel) 19
Hours or possibly just minutes later, I hear people talking outside the door to my room. Ruth’s voice carries, even at a whisper, but the other two, men as far as I can tell, have low voices that blur in the chamber of the hallway.
Out of Place at Home
Growing up, I always felt out of place. I just never really fit in. I didn’t like overly girly stuff, so I didn’t fit in with the girls. And I wasn’t a boy, so I didn’t fit in with the boys. On top of this, I was the tall kid. The overweight kid. As a six-foot seventh grader, whose figure did not conform to the acceptable petiteness of preteen girls, my time in middle school was fraught with feeling like the ultimate outsider. Always removed from the socializing that was happening in the circles a foot below me.
The Mother Writer Group
I have come to the point in my life where I have two great passions: writing and motherhood. Frequently, these two things seem at odds with one another, each vying for the majority of my time and energy. I used to be completely focused on my writing. I studied creative writing in college, got my MFA, and published a book. Writing was my life. Then I had children and I quickly discovered that being a person who pursues a creative passion and motherhood don’t always mix well – if at all. And while I was able to maintain a pretty strong writing routine after the birth of my first child, after my second child I found myself sinking into a life-halting depression. I realized a lot of this was due to the fact that I no longer had the time (nor mental and emotional strength) to write. And I didn’t have much of a community around me that truly understood being both a mother and a writer; the need that goes with both these things and the ache you feel when one is lacking.
Just Let Me Die Here (A Serialized Novel) 18
They are gone. My husband is gone and he took my daughter. He left me and took her with him. He took her. He took her. I am repeating it over and over and apparently not just in my head. I can hear my voice echoing in the room as Ruth walks me to one of the chairs by the window, trying to calm me.
It happened on the couch on our front porch. That old couch that had been out there since Mama decided a few years back that we needed a new one. Some new neighbors moved in down the road and she saw the fancy couch that they pulled out of the back of the moving truck. Daddy said he didn’t think there was anything all that special about it, but Mama did. She went on for days about the white, lacy upholstery and wonderful leather trim. For the next week, whenever she walked through the family room, she would look at our couch and sigh. And the louder she would sigh, the more frustrated Daddy would get. White upholstery wouldn’t last three seconds in this house with all us kids runnin’ round and all the dirt comin’ in from the farmhouse every time someone opened and shut the kitchen door, he would say. Daddy was right. I didn’t think the neighbors’ couch was gunna look real great after one of our long, dry summers when the dust crept in even the tightest shut windows and layered itself up in every nook and cranny. Heck, the white linen napkins that were tucked away in the dining room drawer even seemed to turn brown in the summer. Mama knew this was true too and eventually said that it didn’t have to be white, but that she still wanted a new one. And she continued to sigh every morning as she passed the couch on her way to make breakfast for me and Jake and the twins. And then, one day, comin’ home from school, there was our couch, out on the porch. When I went inside, I found Mama sittin’ all smiles on a brand new blue couch. She was quick to point out the carved mahogany feet. The neighbors’ couch didn’t have no carved mahogany feet.
Just Let Me Die Here (A Serialized Novel) 17
After an hour in the First Aid Clinic, I am finally allowed to leave. Dr. Strange is still a bit concerned about a concussion and sends me off with stern warning that if my head ache increases at all, or I feel dizzy or faint, I am to go to the hospital immediately. My arm is in a sling and the pain is still exceeding the pain killers that the German nurse gave me, but I don’t care. I have to get back to my family. I still can’t reach Tucker on his mobile. I try to assure myself that it’s probably just dead again. He must have left his charger back in the room. He is probably very worried about where I am.
Just Let Me Die Here (A Serialized Novel) 16
The two ski patrolmen guide me all the way to the bottom of the mountain and across to the buildings of the ski resort. When they reach the walkway, they remove their skis and carry me, still strapped to the stretcher, the short way across the open space, to the First Aid Clinic. I turn my head as far as the brace will let me as we pass the lodge in hopes that I might see Tucker. He and Millie could be sitting out on the deck and I’d have one of the medics get his attention. But I don’t see them. Probably keeping warm inside.
Just Let Me Die Here (A Serialized Novel) 14
Please, don’t let me die here. Please, don’t let me die here. It repeats over and over in my head, echoing until the voice is not my own. It’s coming from somewhere else. From deep within me and beyond the mountains. Please, don’t let me die here. I fade in and out, the scene around me becoming blurry and then sharpening like a knife, driving through the colors of the world. A bright light and then darkness again. I try to move, but I am stuck, buried up to my chest in the wave of snow that followed me down the mountain. This can’t be happening. I scream for help and listen to my voice bounce among the trees, getting caught in the crisp afternoon breeze and blowing away down the valley. I am all alone. Except, I now remember, I’m not.
Just Let Me Die Here (A Serialized Novel) 13
We arrive at the ski resort early. The parking lot is nearly empty and we get a spot in the front row. There are two other cars parked near us. One has all its doors open and three guys are piling out, putting on boots and collecting a pair of skis, poles, and two snowboards off the roof rack. An older couple is in the other. They have just arrived and are working on getting their gear together. Could that be Tucker and I years from now? Our children grown and gone and us away on vacation together. I look at the couple again. Nope. That’s not going to be us. The man looks way too happy to be here.