WeWriWa—A limpy walk

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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 right after last week’s, as Igor Konev’s cousin Luiza Eristova has put in a good word for him with the girl who caught his fancy. Luiza said he was a very good boy, and Igor felt obliged to correct her and say he’s a man, at almost 19 years old.

Luiza’s follow-up comment is meant in good fun, not meanness. In my other WIP, my character Csilla says something very similar to her new boyfriend Imre after his defensive overreaction in explaining Old Spice is cologne, not perfume.

At any rate, the girl with sexy feet and exotic hair obligingly goes with him to a part of the library where they can talk more. On the way there, Igor notices something unexpected.

Seventeen shoes

Luiza smirks. “You fellows are all alike, imagining yourselves as strong, mighty men when you’re barely more than boys.  Will the world end if your manliness isn’t constantly validated?  All that talk about being the stronger, superior sex is just insecure posturing.”

The woman with sexy feet and exotic tresses packs up her art supplies, pushes back her chair, and stands up.  As she walks with Igor to a table in an area of the library without such a severe quietness policy, Igor notices her limping, particularly in her right leg.  Wanting to be a gentleman, he says nothing, but wonders if perhaps she’s gussied up her feet so much to compensate for having a limp.

“My name is Violetta,” she says when they’ve taken their seats at the far end of the closest empty table.

*****************************

It’ll take Igor till near the end of the book (about three and a half years later) before he discovers the true reason for Violetta’s limp. Keeping the secret of being a polio survivor is no easy task, as a number of Igor’s New York relatives and friends are well-aware of this, as are his two oldest siblings.

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13 comments on “WeWriWa—A limpy walk

  1. Luiza’s comments do come across with a bit of an edge to me, but Igor knows her better and probably realizes she’s not being mean.

    I like Igor and Violetta as a couple already 🙂 This was such a different time, and you’ve portrayed that so well.

    Marcia

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  2. They’re both so observant and clever, which makes them feel well matched to me. Enjoyed the excerpt and the vintage ad for shoes!

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  3. Violetta is a lovely name.

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  4. Love her sassy dialogue! You go, girl!

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  5. I love the tone and feel of this. And I truly do love the shoes!

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  6. Ed Hoornaert says:

    It takes him 3.5 years to learn about the limp? Yikes. Not a fast learner.

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    • Carrie-Anne says:

      Violetta wanted to start over when she began university, and doesn’t want any of her new friends to know she’s had polio. She hides her caliper under long skirts, and never lets her friends see her bedroom, which contains the iron lung she insists on sleeping in every night.

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  7. Funny how he sees right to the heart of her–and the reason why her feet are so decorated.

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  8. Jenna Jaxon says:

    She does come off as being stronger than him in some ways. I hope he can deal with that aspect of her character. Of course, she’s had to be strong to survive polio, so if he likes her sexy feet, he’d better be ready to deal with the rest of her on her terms. Great snippet!

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  9. T. M. Hunter says:

    An interesting exchange between these two. Enjoyed it.

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  10. P.T. Wyant says:

    I love Luiza! I like the way Igor just ignores her teasing.

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  11. She’s tough isn’t she! And I’m still loving the setting of the library. Having this kind of interaction in a library contains inherent tension, because of the potential for shushing…

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  12. Luiza should totally have left them alone. Not really the type of comments you want to hear when trying to get into a romantic mood.

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