WeWriWa—A slight smile

This week, I’ll be better about making visits on Sunday instead of a day or so later! Last Sunday was Tisha B’Av, the most difficult fast day on the calendar. Being without food or water for 24 hours in the heat of summer makes many people feel miserable, particularly since there’s no all-day service to keep oneself distracted as there is on Yom Kippur.

Welcome back to Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday, weekly Sunday hops where writers share 8–10 sentences from a book or WIP. This week’s snippet comes a few lines after last week’s, as Aleksey has insisted, over Arkadiya’s protests, that her room is being upgraded and her entire stay at the hotel will be free of charge. He then tells her to write down her contact information and the details of her petition, and he’ll take care of paying for her stay and upgrading her room while she’s writing.


Arkadiya sighed and went to a nearby desk to write.  As she was dragging her hand through the fresh ink, her arm at a crooked angle, she noticed the Tsar looking over at her.  Probably just curious to see how someone writing left-handed looked like, but he seemed to have a slight smile upon his face.  She chose to shrug it off as the normal smile of a nice person, and didn’t look in his direction again until after she’d finished writing.

“Very good, Princess.  I’ll look this over at length tomorrow, and see what I can do about granting both these noble requests.  It was very nice to meet a resident of the city where I almost lost my life.”

“May I shake your hand, Your Majesty?”

“Only very gently.  I don’t like very firm, tight handshakes.”


Besides the fact that the Bolsheviks destroyed probably thousands of the Imperial Family’s copious collection of photographs, there also aren’t very many known photographs of Aleksey smiling a real smile because he was a bit self-conscious of the gap between his front teeth. For obvious reasons, corrective dental work was out of the question. He did see a dentist, but anything beyond basic dental care was too dangerous to risk.


15 comments on “WeWriWa—A slight smile

  1. P.T. Wyant says:

    Interesting about the handshake. Odd quirk. I love the bits of information provided outside of the snippet as well.


  2. chellecordero says:

    The dialogue is great, sounds very authentic. Great job.


  3. Arlee Bird says:

    I’m not fond of handshakes period. Whenever I’ve been someplace where I’ve been shaking hands I always feel the need to wash my hands as soon as I can. Gosh, I sound a bit OCD.

    Tossing It Out


  4. She’s s little slow on the spark she’s kindled in him. 🙂

    And thanks for sharing about Tisha B’Av. I didn’t know. 🙂


  5. How can she not fall for him? He’s so adorable, including the gap between the teeth.


  6. siobhanmuir says:

    Great snippet. I love that she thinks he’s just being nice. Well done, Carrie-anne.


  7. I love the details in this, like the fact that he doesn’t want to have his hand shaken too firmly. And the photo is so poignant. Excellent excerpt!


  8. The details make him seem real, not just a person historians talk about.


  9. Interesting snippet. Great job. 🙂


  10. Ed Hoornaert says:

    The photographs go a long way to enhance the engrossing details — left-handed writing, wimpy handshakes, etc. I read through your bio at the right–I had to look up Kartvelophile!


  11. She’s deluding herself a bit, isn’t she?


  12. Alexis Duran says:

    She seems very authentic in her cluelessness. And he seems, although delicate in a way, very firm about what he wants. Great characters developing in these snippets.


  13. They have an interesting relationship. I wonder how it will evolved because they seem good together but a bit of a miss match as well.


  14. jtsuruoka says:

    Nicely done. I’ve always enjoyed reading about Russian history. This snippet has an authentic ring to it.


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