Welcome back to Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday, weekly Sunday hops where writers share 8–10 sentences from a book or WIP. This year, my Halloween-themed snippets come from Chapter 45, “October Oblectations,” of my WIP, A Dream Deferred: Lyuba and Ivan at University. Most of this chapter is set over Halloween 1949.
This week’s snippet comes right after last week’s, when Bogdana’s cabbie and doctor’s assistant Achilles brought her Halloween-colored roses and her aunt Fyodora asked him to introduce his companion. Achilles, a 28-year-old widower, is taking his 18-month-old daughter Klara for her first trick-or-treating.
This has been slightly edited to fit ten lines.
Achilles gently nudges her forward, smiling the biggest smile Bogdana’s ever seen him use. “What do you say, Klarika?”
“Trick-or-treat,” she says in a voice as tiny as she is, holding out an orange cloth bag with yellow jack-o-lantern cut-outs sewn on.
Bogdana puts an Almond Joy bar in her bag, then adds a pack of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, since the poor girl has no mother, and deserves extra sweets from somewhere.
“What do you say now, Klarika?” Achilles asks. When Klara doesn’t say anything, he kneels and whispers in her ear.
“Can you tell the nice lady that in another way?” He whispers to her again.
Achilles is Slovenian–American, though his first name doesn’t reflect that at all. He’s raising Klara to be bilingual. I have a great deal of love, respect, and admiration for the Slovenian people, in part because their beautiful national anthem expresses a hope for the day when all nations of the world will be friends and toast to peace.