Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Hi, I’m Elizabeth Ashley, heroine of May I Have this Dance.

 During the summer of 1955 I fell in love. Deeply in love. I met Danny Sullivan while we visited Lakeview Resort, where we went every year ever since I could remember. That summer was special, I was finally of age. It was my coming out year. That’s high society talk for looking for a husband.

Well I found mine. Danny! We were inseparable, much to my father’s dismay. My father was… well, let’s just say old fashioned.

Wait, old fashioned wasn’t even the word to describe my father. He should have lived in the Victorian Era. Honest, he was such a stick in the mud. And strict. Good lord, you can’t imagine how strict he was. Nothing I did pleased him. And dating Danny Sullivan definitely did not please him. He tried to forbid it, but I pretty much ignored him. Something I’d never done before. I knew he wouldn’t do anything because he wouldn’t go against Danny’s aunt, Mrs. James. Actually, she really wasn’t Danny’s aunt, but that’s another story. She called him her nephew and that was enough for the people at Lakeview.

Mrs. James was the most prominent person in Lakeview. Heck, she pretty much owned most of it. So no one went against her. To suffer Mrs. James’s wrath just wasn’t worth the risk. No one did it, including my father. But that didn’t keep Father from disapproving of Danny.

Oh no, Father didn’t approve of Danny in any way, shape or form. He never passed up a chance to lecture me on Danny’s lack of breeding. Not that it mattered to me. Danny was everything I was looking for in a man. He was sweet, caring, sensitive and attentive. What more could a woman want?

So I did pretty much what I wanted. Danny and I soon became a couple. That meant none of the other guys even asked me to dance, which was fine with me. None of those guys held a candle to Danny.

When he asked me to marry him, I couldn’t believe it. I mean me, Danny wanted to marry me! I was in seventh heaven. Until it came time to ask Father that is.

To find out what happened, you’ll have to read May I Have this Dance is available soon from MuseItUp Publishing http://bit.ly/MayIHaveThisDance.

To learn more about me, visit my website: http://www.roseannedowell.com/
 or my blog: http://roseannedowellauthor.blogspot.com/


Elizabeth crept in the front door at dawn. Please let Father be sleeping. Unfortunately, he sat in living room, waiting for her. Darn, she should’ve known he’d wait up.

“Ahem.” He stood with his hands on hips as she tiptoed to the stairway. The look on his face said it all.

She turned to face the music, still feeling a bit rebellious.

“Where have you been, Miss?”

Elizabeth almost burst out laughing at his Victorian sounding voice. He always called her Miss when he lectured her.

“At the bonfire with the other kids, then we went for breakfast. You know the tradition.”

Hopefully, her voice held the right note of contrition. Excited after being with Danny, she wasn’t sure her voice sounded calm.

“Was that hooligan with you, the one Mrs. James calls her nephew?”

Elizabeth groaned. He was going to let her have it now.

“Yes, Father, he was there too.” He was with me. He chose me over all the other girls. He’s so mature, and makes me so happy, she wanted to shout, but knew better than to say too much. Her father didn’t take back-talk.

“Elizabeth, you know it’s not proper for a girl to dance solely with one young man. It gives you the appearance of being....” He looked flustered, as if he couldn’t think of the right word. “Loose,” he finished. “It will ruin your reputation. No decent young man will look at you as a prospective wife. You really must be more careful in the future.”

“Yes, Father,” she mumbled, but knew he wasn’t finished.

“This is your coming out year. You are supposed to give all the young men a chance to court you.” He crossed his arms and stared at her. “You know that ruffian doesn’t come from the proper position in society. I want you stay away from him.”

Elizabeth stifled a yawn. She was tired and wanted to go to bed, wanted to remember and dream about Danny and his tender goodnight kiss. Her father’s opinion didn’t mean much to her right now.

“Go on then.” He waved his hand in dismissal, looking as if he wanted to say more, but deciding against it. “We’ll discuss this further in the morning. And do not think you are going to sleep all day either, young lady. Your sister has been in bed for hours.”

Elizabeth went to her father, stood on tiptoe, and kissed his cheek as expected. “Good night, Father.” Then turned and raced from the room. Her smile returned as she touched her fingers to her mouth, trying to recapture the feel of Danny’s lips. His kiss, gentle and promising, still lingered in her memory and on her lips, despite her father.


Roseanne Dowell said...

May I Have this Dance will be available July 15th.

Unknown said...

Oh darling Ro...this is so exciting! Your versatility in writing astound me and this sounds like another winner. Way to go dear friend. I'm so very proud of you.

Roseanne Dowell said...

Thanks, Karen. I love writing about older heroines.

Tara said...

I've been dying to read this one since you zapped me that lovely cover to post on goodreads. July 15th is not coming soon enough.

Roseanne Dowell said...

Thanks, Tara. It'll be here ina couple of days.

Sara Durham Writer ~ Author said...

Lovely excerpt Roseanne! How times have changed...:)


Roseanne Dowell said...

They certainly have, Sara.
But even for back then, her father was overly strict.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful post. I look forward to hosting Roseanne on my blog on the 15th. Release day! Woot!

BarbaraB said...

Roseanne, your story sound very romantic and the cover is intriguing.

Roseanne Dowell said...

Thanks,Barbara. Ilove the cover.