Elizabeth, Book One in the Widows of Blessings Valley Series
Maxine Douglas is my guest today sharing her newest book, Elizabeth, available on pre-order for release on August 1, 2019. This sounds like the start of a wonderful series about widows dealing with the heartfelt grief of losing a spouse. I’ve pre-ordered my copy and look forward to reading it!
A mining accident has killed several miners in Blessings Valley. Some of the widows are struggling through their grief to answer a widow’s question. With Wilhelmina “Willa” Alexander’s guidance, they just might each learn to live again.
Two people scarred by life. She carries the scars on her heart. He carries the scars on his body. Can they find peace, healing, and love together?
Early Summer 1892
Elizabeth Hamilton stood in the middle of her small living room, twisting the wedding band on her left ring finger. She sucked in her bottom lip, hoping to stop the pain that never ceased to overwhelm her.
This had been their home—her and Steven’s. The place where they’d made plans to one day raise a family.
That dream was gone.
Steven was gone.
She wrapped her arms tightly around her trembling body. The suppressed anger in her from the past several months had reached its boiling point. The tears she’d fought so hard to hold back burst forth like a raging river after a storm.
With an agonized scream, she clenched her hands tightly into fists and dropped to her knees. “You promised, Steven Hamilton! You promised to never leave me. You promised we’d be together forever. You promised, you promised, damn you, you promised…” Elizabeth’s body gave in to the sorrow, pain, and loss she’d held back since the explosion at the mine.
She was tired. Tired of being strong. Tired of going on as if nothing had happened. Tired of everything.
Sucking in the last of the sobs, Elizabeth drew herself upright, smoothed back her hair, and straightened her back. One slow step at a time, she walked through her home. Everywhere she looked, reminders of Steven and their life together brought more tears.
“Steven, what am I to do?” she asked, picking up the framed wedding picture. “The money from the mining company has only gone so far. What is left may not be enough to sustain our home for long.”
Tracing the face of her husband’s image with a trembling fingertip, Elizabeth swallowed a trembling sigh. There was only one thing she could do to keep their home—her home.
Surely someone in Blessings Valley would have clothing in need of mending. She’d go back to being a seamstress and do what she must to survive.
“Yes, that’s what I shall do. It may not be much, but if I’m frugal, I may not have to give up our home.” Elizabeth set the picture back on the mantel, a small smile on her face that didn’t reach her heart.
Gathering a black shawl around her shoulders, Elizabeth stepped out of her home and onto the road leading to the heart of Blessings Valley. This was the first day in weeks since they’d put Steven in the ground that she’d left the sanctuary of her home. She’d only gone to get supplies, avoiding as many people as possible.
The warmth of the day did little to her warm her cold and broken soul. The late morning was as quiet as new fallen snow, much like her spirit.
Placing one foot in front of the other, Elizabeth strolled slowly along the path. She paused for a moment in front of the small church she and Steven attended often. Her gaze travelled up to the cross hanging above the door, and she closed her eyes.
How could a God she worshipped take her husband and those of her friends? One day she may find enough forgiveness to walk through those doors again, but she’d never forget. She’d never forget the pain the loss of her precious love caused.
Turning her back on the church door, Elizabeth continued on her way to Smith’s Dry Goods. She would need to purchase thread in several colors and needles of different sizes if she was to return to work as a seamstress. She’d once been very handy with a needle and thread—before Steven had swept her off her feet, married her, and brought her to Blessings Valley where they started to build their life together. That was five years ago when the mine first opened.
Those days were long gone, and that life a ghost of her past. The reality of being alone was a bitterness she now was learning to live with, like it or not.
Pre-order your copy here:
About the Author:
Maxine Douglas writes in many genres and has found a love for the western historical romance. A Wisconsin native, Maxine resides in Chickasha. While Maxine may miss her family and friends in the north, she loves the mild winters Oklahoma has to offer. She has four grown children, two granddaughters, and a German Shorthair Pointer. And many friends she now considers her OK family.
Maxine’s western along the Chisholm Trail, The Marshal’s Bride, was a 2017 International Digital Award Finalist in the Western Historical-Short category.
Maxine is a current member of Romance Writers of America, Wisconsin Romance Writers of America, Oklahoma Writers Federation, Inc. and its affiliate Oklahoma Romance Writers Guild, Inc.