WeWriWa—Bazaar Surprise

Welcome back to Weekend Writing Warriors, where participants share 8 sentences from a book or WIP. I’m switching gears this week and returning to my WIP, Journey Through a Dark Forest. The book is shaping up to be much longer than I’d guesstimated going in, and I’ll probably end up putting it out as four volumes (making clear they’re installments of the same book, not separate books).

These lines start Chapter 60, “Keeping a Promise,” one of the Iranian chapters. It’s the Summer of 1941, and Alina Petropashvili has been living in Fereydan with her Armenian friends for four years now. Her husband, Amiran Koridze, was arrested at the height of the Great Terror in 1937, and ordered her to get the hell out of Georgia, go to her old friends in Armenia, and escape to Iran, where some old friends of his would take care of her. Alina’s old orphanage friend Inna and their now-elderly orphanage mother Mrs. Brezhneva also fled to Iran, and settled in the nearby city of Isfahan (a former capital city).

Alina is now in for a startling surprise.


On her way home from the bazaar in the Georgian neighborhood of Fereydan, Alína hears a great commotion.  She turns to look and sees a horrific-looking man collapsing by a wall, about twenty feet away from a crafts kiosk.  Feeling a little bit sorry his piteous cries for food or water are ignored by everyone, she makes her way back into the bazaar.  At least Tamar is back home with Ohanna and her children, and won’t have to see this severely disfigured soul.

Alína kneels down and pulls her canteen out of her green, purple, and yellow felt bag. “Here you go, Batoni.  You can drink as much as you need.”

He grabs the canteen with a mangled hand and greedily gulps the entire contents.


I’ve known Alina since my first Russian historical, when she was 12 years old and one of my favorite orphanage girls, and featured her a few times in the sequel, but never had any plans to use her in the third book. I’m so glad I decided to expand my outline to finally make her one of the main characters in the ensemble cast, and to make her the star of one of the storylines. Plus, I’ve loved writing the chapters and sections set in Iran, so much so I’m planning to visit Iran for firsthand research for the future second draft.


9 thoughts on “WeWriWa—Bazaar Surprise

  1. Alina lends a very human aspect to your story.

    I’m curious, Carrie-Anne. Are you at all hesitant to go to Iran? I guess the announcement that they are going to try to open relations with the rest of the non-muslim world is a positive. 🙂


    • I’ve actually never felt more passionate about visiting a place, and feel completely unafraid. I’ve heard so many wonderful stories from Americans who visited Iran, and have found out a lot of important information like how to apply for a visa, precautions to take, the necessity of going with a tour and not by oneself, and the fact that most women in Iran aren’t as covered-up as the media portrays. It’s such a beautiful country, and has come a long way from how it was when I was young.


  2. You always know how to bring me right into a scene, Carrie-Anne! Your enthusiasm for this setting is obvious.

    Will you be blogging about your trip? I want to hear all about it!


    • From what I’ve heard, it’s okay for tourists to bring computers to Iran, though I’m not sure if their Internet usage would be as closely monitored as for natives. I’d definitely be blogging about it after I got home, though, and sharing lots of pictures.

      I’m thinking I’ll reward myself with the trip after I’ve earned my master’s degree, which hopefully will be within the next two years. Maybe by that time, Americans will be allowed to bring back more than just $100 in goods.


  3. That was kind of her.

    How interesting. I recently received my Genographic results and my first reference group is Georgian. I’ve been researching that part of the world these past few days.


  4. It’s a shame that everyone else is ignoring him, but I’m not surprised. He could be contagious, or dangerous, and he certainly sounds like he’s difficult to look at. You have me intrigued about this surprise! I wonder if it’s who the man is, or something he knows…


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