Welcome back to Weekend Writing Warriors, where participants share 8 sentences from a book or WIP. I’m still sharing from my current WIP, the longest single-volume book I’ve written to date, the third of my Russian/North American historicals. This comes from Chapter 36, “Resettlement Continues,” in August 1937.
Young, pregnant widow Inessa Zyuganova has just arrived in the major Dutch port city of Rotterdam with her children, her youngest cousin Vladlena, and her youngest adoptive sister Valentina. Her foster baby Damir’s father Vitya, her old friend Inna’s little brother, also traveled with them. To avoid going through another dictatorship (Germany) on their way from Poland to The Netherlands, they took several boats.
Inessa’s three-year-old daughter Veronika wandered off to chase an Aegean kitten, but Vitya searched the crowds and brought her back in time for boarding. Now he has to say goodbye to seven-month-old Damir for the third time in four months. This time, he’s not sure when he’ll see him again, as he’s going to set out for Persia, where his sister Inna fled with his two-and-a-half-year-old daughter Velira. As he’s saying goodbye to Inessa, she feels an unexpected sensation she hasn’t felt since losing her husband.
Inéssa accepts his embrace, and lets him kiss her on the cheek. A tiny part of her feels a yearning thrill to be held and kissed by a man again, even if it’s only in friendship. Not a day since April hasn’t gone by when she’s ached for her Rómek to be back at her side, so she can have that kind of love and physical closeness to a man. She supposes Vítya must feel the same way about missing his Mánya and longing for the touch and companionship of a woman.
“Have a safe voyage. Remember, I’ll join you as soon as I’m able to, and I’ll do my best to locate you as speedily as I can. Don’t overtax yourself too much, since you’re still recovering from that gunshot and head injury. Just relax and let your sister and cousin take care of you.”