I was going to share another snippet from Guarding the Heart today. But, I just sent Healing the Heart to my beta reader, so it’s closer to being ready to publish. Whereas Guarding the Heart still has another round of edits to go through before it will even be ready to send to my critique partner. So, instead you get some more of Healing the Heart. I’d like to have this out before the end of the year, but that of course depends on when I get it back and how much I need to fix. Warning: There is mention of domestic/child abuse at the beginning of this snippet.
Jared watched Greg leave the clinic with his mother and his heart twisted. He knew what the boy would go home to and anger for his mother rose up. She could get him and her daughter out of their situation. It wasn’t so black and white. She lived daily in fear of her husband but had even more fear about leaving him.
What would it take to get her to accept her husband was an abusive bastard, and they didn’t deserve this? One of her children dying? Being beaten so bad they could never recover? He’d seen too many come through in the same situation. It broke him every time. Just because he’d survived it didn’t mean the rest would be so lucky.
He clenched his fists at his sides and leaned against his desk. That didn’t do anything to push all those feelings, all those memories away. Melanie’s steps approached his office, and he took a deep breath. He couldn’t deal with her now. He had told her to come to his office. He’d done this to himself.
At the knock on the door a moment later, he said, “I left it open for a reason.” Footsteps sounded then a soft click as the door closed. Still he didn’t face her.
“You could have let me know I’d be working under you. Did you have all the staff call you Dr. J, so I wouldn’t know it was you?”
He shook his head. “They’ve always called me that. So do our patients. I didn’t realize it would still matter. It’s been almost six years.” It was childish to not look at her while he spoke, but he wasn’t sure if he could and remain detached. He continued to face the wall. “I figured you’d moved on.” He did finally turn around. “You went right back to him after all.”
He saw the shock in her eyes a moment before she asked. “What are you talking about?”
“You know exactly what. You kept him between us the whole year we were together. He broke your heart and then you went running right back to him as soon as I left.”