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Terry L. White

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Ancient Memories
by Terry L. White   

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Books by Terry L. White
· Drama Queen Rules
· Chesapeake Visions
· Runaway Hearts
· Chesapeake Destiny
· Chesapeake Legacy
                >> View all


Historical Fiction

Publisher:  Write Words, Inc. ISBN-10:  1594310823


Copyright:  2000 ISBN-13:  9781594310829

The journey of two souls as they pass through lifetime after lifetime.

Write Words, Inc.
Write Words, Inc.

Nancy Hunter meets Peter Allen in a creative writing class offered by her local community college. Little does she know she will soon explore her connection with the man through life after life through the stories they write.

The story takes us to a lifetime in ancient Egypt where the Nan is given to the ruler Thumoses during her youth. Thumosis loves Nan, neglecting his other wives to spend time with her even though this infuriates his first wife Amset. Nann notices the slave Potifar when he saves Amset's baby from the death she arranged for her own child. Potifar and Nann fall in love and are eventually executed by Thumoses for their adultry.

Molly meets Thomas in a lifetime in early England, but she is forced to marry another. It is only when she gives birth to a son does she realize that this is the love that will sustain her thoroughout the ages.

In colonial America, two braves discover their love for one another when they are tortured by Huron women. Small Crow and Little Bear swear to meet again when they realize they must die at their enemie's hands.

Just after the Civil War, Sadie is invited to come to the preacher's house to be a housekeeper for his delicate wife, Aggie. The two women discover a strong love for each other and as Aggie dies, she presses Sadie to take her place in the household and care for her husband and child.

As the book ends, Nancy and Peter realize they have written the same story and realize that love is indeed, eternal.


Chapter One

What do you do with yourself when your life is over? I don't know about everyone else, but when my mother passed away and I no longer had to be at her beck and call every minute of the livelong day, I started signing up for things.

I took telephone calls at the local bottle museum as an unpaid volunteer. I passed out juice and cookies for the semi-annual blood drives at the local firehouse. I joined a singles group one week and un-joined the next - every guy there was looking for someone to either support him or to nurse him through the infirmities of his old age. Romance, apparently, was not in the cards, so I decided to take some classes. After all, I had the time and I could afford to do so.

Mother had left me well, off, I can't complain about that at all. She came from money and she left money. After she was gone, I didn't need to work-- unless I wanted to, but I had remained home most of my adult life, to cater to her endless needs and petty complaints.

I was ready for some excitement. If not excitement, then perhaps, the next best thing - a little mental stimulation.

"Creative Writing class offered by Adult Education." I read in the Prairie Star and called the community college to sign myself up. I had been planning to begin the Great American Novel for the past forty-five years, ever since I learned to read, but life got in the way. Now that I had time I figured it couldn't hurt to learn a little bit about the art of writing before I began.

Thursday night, the sky was just off dark, a whining north wind scoured the last faded leaves from the maple outside my front door.

"I might rather stay in and cozy up in front of the TV," I told myself and pumped the gas pedal a couple of times to prime my Oldsmobile, Good Girl, into action. I always say "Good Girl!" when she starts successfully, and that night was no exception. She started, but I could have withheld the praise.

Good Girl choked out before I got her out of the yard and I'll bet I drove most of the ten miles to the campus before I could feel my toes. She was getting old, and so was I.

The classroom was too bright. Flourescent lights always seemed to pick up every flaw in my complexion and tend to hurt my eyes.

I was first in the room, a little too eager to begin, and it was maybe ten minutes before the rest of the new class found the correct classroom and chose their places at four long tables arranged in a square. There were fifteen or sixteen students in the room by the time the halls quieted down and the other classes in the building started. By tacit agreement, the chair nearest the blackboard was reserved for our instructor, Mrs. Harriet Blake, newspaper reporter, prize winning author, and aspiring novelist.

"Is this seat taken?"

I looked up into a pair of the loveliest deep blue eyes. They were complimented very nicely by a handsomely tanned face and a pair of respectably wide shoulders encased in the ubitiquious plaid flannel of early winter. The owner's hair was white, but the rest of him was utterly beautiful. I shook my head. "Not at all. Be my guest."

My tablemate introduced himself. "Peter Allen."

"Nancy Hunter."

So far, so good. Mr. Allen unzipped his leather briefcase, settled himself with legal pad and pencil. "Have you written anything yet?"

I decided he was just being friendly and shook my head. "I used to write bad poetry in high school. It was always about love and it always rhymed. Nothing rhymes these days, someone said it's not supposed to. Love is out of style right now, so that's a bust. But what I did write was ages ago, so I'm going to excuse my poor taste and put it off to youth and inexperience. You?"

Peter laughed, his teeth were white and even. "Reports, magazine articles, boring stuff. Nothing rhymed."

I couldn't help but wonder where I knew this man before. Those eyes were so familiar. But I didn't have long to brood about my classmate's eyes. Our teacher arrived. I couldn't help but notice Mrs. Blake had a limp. I felt a vague sense of uneasiness and wondered what caused the injury.

"Why don't we all introduce ourselves?" Mrs. Blake prompted, very much a veteran teacher. She sat at the chair her students left near the blackboard and sorted a big stack of papers while everyone said who they were and why they were in her class.

"I want to write romance novels," I heard myself say. But that wasn't right.

I wanted to write something people would read a hundred years from now. I wanted to write something significant. I wanted to write a book people would talk about on subways and pass around at family gatherings because my vision was so much like their own, my thoughts so deep, so pure.... "I'm here because I want to learn to write well."

Every other person in the room said the same thing. They said it fifteen different ways.

Mrs. Blake was plump and kind. You could see it by the way her lips twitched at our enthusiastic pursuit of the sublime and ephemeral. "We will discuss the elements of good writing during the ten weeks this class meets. Each week will be focused some different aspect of writing such as character, dialogue, plot, tension, hooks and transitions...."

Pencils scratched against paper, eyes raised to squint at Mrs. Blake's crabbed, crooked handwriting as she listed the points we would cover. After a few minutes she limped back to her seat, looked at her watch and sighed.

"Did anyone bring anything to read?" she asked hopefully.

No one had.

Mrs. Blake sighed again, this time there was no mistake. She drew in a deep, deep breath and let it out slowly, as if she were preparing herself for a long-distance run.

"Okay, since the object of this course is to help you learn to write, one of the things I will expect is that you come to class with something to read. It doesn't have to be long, and it doesn't have to be finished, but I can't talk for two solid hours and continue to make sense. You wouldn't enjoy it and neither would I." She paused to quell the fluttering of papers that came in the wake of this statement.

"The best way for a writer to learn what he or she is doing wrong...," Mrs. Blake paused again and raked her naturally frosted blonde-gray hair back from her ears. "....or right, is to read his or her work aloud in front of a group of interested persons and listen to what they think is good or bad about the work."

Peter Allen tensed at my left.

"We will have rules." Mrs. Blake had been teaching a long time. She recognized beginner's jitters when she saw them. "We say what happened, what was good, and what we would change if the work were ours. Everybody's...." she paused and beamed at her new students. "... work is good, everyone has a different voice and a different story to tell. I'm here to help you do it and I am looking forward to hearing something each and every one of you has written.

"But since none of you brought anything to read that won't begin until next week. In the meantime, I would like to discuss some common-sense elements that will make all of you good writers from the very start." Mrs. Blake's smile was encouraging. "The first thing you have to remember, no matter what kind of project you want to do is to write what you know."

I sighed. I had spent forty years of my life, ever since I was ten, taking care of my invalid mother. I knew about back rubs and I knew about antispasmodics, but I didn't know much at all about the world. I, most particularly, didn't know much about love. Mother always told me I would have been a better daughter if I had been more loving. But where would I have learned? After high school I had rarely been outside the house in which I had been born.

You could say I didn't know much about life at all.

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