Margo’s Choice, Women’s Fiction, builds tension based on character flaws.
Margo worries when she learns Jay, her EX, is coming back for their oldest daughter’s birthday. She doesn’t know Jay is retiring from the Marines and coming home to stay. Jay was her first love and her only love. Neither has remarried, and they still share a strong attraction to each other, but Margo is determined she will never fall for his charms again. He leaves her hurt and disappointed each time. Will she never learn?
“He sends cards and gifts for both,” Carol said. “The girls show me everything their daddy sends them.”
Margo’s response. “At first he sent cards and gifts for Rose. His mama sent cards and gifts for Dee, then she finally shamed him into doing it, since she was only a kid.“
Rose(Electra) and Dee (Deidre) have a lot at stake, too!
Electra is 20 and in college.
Electra couldn’t wait to see her dad again. He had always been so big and strong. He’d made her feel safe. Even last year he’d been able to hoist her over his shoulder, practically bench press her hundred and twenty pounds. That was after they’d run three miles. He’d carried her the last half mile and she’d nearly tossed her breakfast. At five feet five, she was no lightweight.
He’d be around all the time now, since he was retiring. At least he wouldn’t try to make rules and treat her like a kid the way Mama and her grandparents did. She’d soon be a college graduate and she’d be on her own. Sweet! Mama didn’t know Daddy sent her money every month. With that and her part time job, she’d paid for a car. Both sets of grandparents had given money toward her down payment. If he kept up the extra money, she could move into her own apartment soon.
She missed having her dad around. She loved the way her friends reacted to him and even pictures of him. The girls called him so-o-o hot and the guys said he looked cut. His muscles looked like they had muscles. For an old guy and a dad, he looked great, better than any football player or weight lifter she’d ever seen.
Why did Dad seem so strange about Dee? Everyone loved Dee. How could anyone not love her? She made good grades, didn’t get into trouble, and had no idea she was special. Dee never ratted her out, like about hidden piercings or tattoos or nights spent with a certain boyfriend who played in a band. Mama and the grandparents would shit a brick if they knew about him and the things she’d done with him.
Deidre is in high school and vulnerable.
Hell, her mom had married at twenty, and look how that ended up. No way am I getting tied down at twenty, even for Shark.
Deidre re-read her letters from her dad. Then she re-read each card. She’d printed her emails from him. They were all great letters but something made them different from the letters and cards he’d sent to Electra. Not once could she find the word love in any of them. Electra and Grandma M said men weren’t good at using that word, but she’d seen it in her sister’s letters from their dad. Now that he was coming home for good, she’d make him proud of her. She’d make him love her like he loved Electra.
She’d show him the manila envelope with her report cards and academic awards. This year she’d run track and done well, winning the last three races. Maybe he’d get her a car, too. She’d saved most of the money he’d sent for birthdays and Christmas and monthly allowance checks. Electra had guilted him into sending them extra allowances and laughed about it. Mama had no clue they had extra money
So much potential for growth and so much for pain!
Contact Mary Marvella
Follow Mary Marvella on Twitter @mmarvellab
Books by Mary Marvella
Haunting Refrain, The Gift, Margo’s Choice
Protecting Melissa, Protective Instincts, Cost of Deception
Forever Love, Write Dirty to Me, Her Deception. Cheerleader Dad
Weeding the Garden of your Manuscript: What Editors Wish You Knew.