Thursday, January 16, 2020

My Story BEFORE The Story ~ Chelsea Hamilton ~ Legacy Reclaimed

I slid into the window seat in the first class cabin, snatched the small packet of tissues from my Louis Vuitton purse, and dropped my purse on the floor. I nudged it with my foot beneath the seat in front of me, then fumbled with the packet of tissues, struggling to see past the haze of tears. 

An older gentleman sat beside me, but I stared out the window at the rainy Paris afternoon. I’d so longed to return to New Hampshire, to take my place at the company, but not like this. 

After the flight took off, the gentleman beside me turned my direction. The smile he wore faded when he caught sight of my face. I could only imagine how ragged I must have looked. “Oh, dear,” he said. “You’ve had bad news.” 

The kindness in his tone brought a fresh wave of tears, and I dabbed at my eyes. 

“Do you want to talk about it?” 

With a total stranger? Certainly not. Except I needed to talk to somebody, to share my grief and the fears that wouldn’t be silenced. 

“My mother was killed in a car accident early this morning.” 

“I’m so sorry.” He seemed genuinely grieved. “What a terrible shock.” 

Indeed. I’d spoken to Mum the day before. We’d discussed the business, as usual. As I had done so many times, I told her how much I wanted to leave Paris and return to New Hampshire to work at the company my parents had started before I was born. It had always been my dream to carry on her parents’ legacy, but ever since Daddy’s death when I was twelve, Mum had wanted me to stay in Europe. She’d even gone so far as to hire bodyguards to protect me, as if danger lurked around every corner. 

The old man was watching me still, a kind look in his eyes. I don’t why, but I explained further. “She was up on the mountain near our home in the middle of the night, and nobody seems to know why. It’s all so mysterious. I just wonder…” 

“Wonder what?” the man asked. 

“It’s silly, really. Just because Daddy was murdered doesn’t mean Mum was.” 

The man’s bushy gray eyebrows rose on his forehead. “Your father was murdered?” 

“It’s not related to Mum’s death.” My English accent was strong as ever. I’d have to work on losing that when I arrived in the States. “With Mum gone, I’m to inherit the business.” 

“What kind of business?” 

I shouldn’t say. If I did, our casual conversation would change, and this man could share my private business with the world. But he didn’t seem the Instagram type, and there was something about him that made me trust him. I needed to speak the truth now, to be open and honest. When I arrived home, I’d need to be on my guard. “I am Chelsea Hamilton. My parents owned Hamilton Clothiers.” 

The man’s jaw dropped. “I didn’t recognize you with those sunglasses. I heard of her death on the business news this morning. I am so sorry for your loss.” 

“Thank you.” 

“That’s quite a burden for someone so young.” 

Twenty-five, and I’d never worked a day in my life. Instead, I’d spent years at a boarding school, then at university in England, now in an unpaid internship in Paris. I’d had everything I’d ever needed, all my bills paid, and a generous allowance that afforded me the opportunity to buy whatever I wanted and travel where ever I chose—as long as it wasn’t home. 

“Do you have siblings?” he asked. 

“I’m an only child.” 

“Is there nobody you can count on now?” 

“My Uncle Frank.” The thought of him brought a smile. Uncle Frank was my only remaining relative in the world. “He’s worked at HCI since the beginning. He’ll help me until I get my feet under me. It’s just… This was never my plan. I thought I’d have years to learn the business. I planned to work in every department, really get to where I understood the nitty gritty. Now… I’m so lost. How could this have happened?” 

The man patted my arm. “The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away.” 
My voice squeaked as I added, “Blessed be the name of the Lord.”

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My Story Title:   Legacy Reclaimed

My Story Genre: Christian Romantic Suspense

My Story Releases:   February 11, 2020

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The Author of My Story:    Robin Patchen

Aside from her family and her Savior, Robin Patchen has two loves—writing and traveling. If she could combine them, she’d spend a lot of time sitting in front of her laptop at sidewalk cafes and ski lodges and beachside burger joints. She’d visit every place in the entire world—twice, if possible—and craft stories and tell people about her Savior. Alas, time is too short and money is too scarce for Robin to traipse all over the globe, even if her husband and kids wanted to go with her. So she stays in Oklahoma, shares the Good News when she can, and writes to illustrate the unending grace of God through the power and magic of story.

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Get Connected:

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WHERE can the book be purchased?

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Robin Patchen will be honored to gift a winner a signed copy of
Legacy Rejected ~ Book 1 in her Legacy Series.

Be sure to leave a comment with an email address where you can be reached should you win.



HeidiDruKortman said...

Joy, I'm so glad you're continuing this theme on your blog. It's a treat to hear about a wealth of stories.

Robin, thank you for providing such intriguing material. said...

Thank you so much for bringing Chelsea to journeystojoy this week.
I SO want to get my hands on this series - looking forward to the reading of each of the novels.

Praying your week here brings you blessing! said...

Doesn't Robin's book sound good?

I told her, I need to read the series - SOON - like spending some DOWN TIME _ finally_ with a good story!

Thanks for your comment!

Robin Patchen said...

I'm so happy to be here today! I love the "story before the story" theme of the blog and really enjoyed writing this little scene.

Thanks, Joy, for hosting me! said...

You're so very welcome, Robin!

Enjoy your time with us!

Anonymous said...

That short excerpt certainly roped me in! I’ll definitely be adding this to my TBR list. Thank you Robin for telling us about your upcoming book and Joy for hosting.
perrianne (DOT) askew (AT) me (DOT) com
Perrianne Askew said...

Perrianne Askew;

IF YOU DO NOT HAVE BOOK ONE - this is a great time to see if your name is pulled from the "hat" next Wednesday evening!

Thanks for stopping by!

Robin Patchen said...

You're very welcome, Heidi. God bless!

Robin Patchen said...

I hope you get to read it, Perrianne!

Terri said...

I've read the book and it's fantastic! Robin, you get better with every book.

I loved reading Chelsea's' Story before the Story. said...

Perrianne Askew is our winner, Robin!