FOOTPRINTS is about Joe who receives an anonymous letter stating he has a 14 year old son he is not aware of. He hopes this information does not affect his recent marriage to a wonderful lady with two children. Joe’s desire to find his missing son puts a strain on everyone. This Adult novel deals with relationships.
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Richard & Esther Provencher
This adult/family audience fiction manuscript has approximately 66,500 words in 30 chapters as well as a Prologue and Epilogue, saved on Microsoft Word 2000.
The Setting- The Thompson home is beside Victoria Park in Truro, Nova Scotia. And their camping trip takes place at Lake Economy, 30 miles away. We follow Edward growing up through a series of foster homes, until he ends up in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. Each character has a personal goal. And this story brings them together on a small island where the pieces of the puzzle try to fit together.
General Story Outline- Joe Thompson is a contented family man, with a loving wife, Ann and two adopted children who think the world of him. Life is peaceful, with plans being made to go camping for a week. That is, until a letter arrives with no return address. It says he has a son, Edward he never met.
Apparently the boy was born as a result of a relationship he had almost forgotten. After much soul searching and discussion with his family he goes on a quest to find his son. Unknown to Joe, Edward is very angry due to unhappy years in foster homes and he is seeking his dad for some kind of revenge.
The story focuses on relationships and how each family member copes with the possibility of a son -- brother joining their family. Is there room for another child? Each person has to deal with this overriding issue. And what about Edward? Does he follow through on his violent intentions?
A family under attack --
Joe promised his adopted son, Paul he is the special son he always wanted. Now a sharing may take place. After Joe discloses a previous relationship, Ann, his wife of one year feels let down. Leah, Joe’s other adopted child has to deal with bouncing emotions within their once serene household. It’s because daddy is now consumed with finding Edward.
Several minor characters with personal issues –
The Children’s Aid Director had an unplanned pregnancy no one knows about, a grown up daughter. Truro’s Deputy Chief of Police has a serious rift with his only son. After being kicked out of the home, will the teenager ever return?
Mrs. Cipek is a former campground director. Will she be able to ever capture the adventure of her enterprise re-opening?
The story’s main characters include –
Joe Thompson- 34 years of age, single, married one year to Ann. He’s very active in the outdoors and works for Colchester County Social Services. He’s an idealist wanting everything in harmony, wears tri-focal wire framed glasses, hair thinning on top. A special thrill was adopting two of his wife’s children, something they wanted.
Ann Thompson- 36 years of age, second marriage, divorced five years. She has three children, Paul and Leah at home with her, and Chris living with his father. She is a grade six elementary school teacher, with Paul in her class. Ann has laugh lines on her face, divorced a womanizer and hates bugs. She loves and supports Joe even when he goes on a quest, which takes him away from his one year old family.
Paul Thompson- 11 years of age in Grade Six, an active boy whose energy level and talking almost drives his younger sister crazy. He loves having a step dad turned dad, since his own didn’t pay much attention to him. His mother is like a protecting bear, now he has someone else. He is a quick learner, and enjoys canoeing and camping.
Leah Thompson- in grade two acts more like a ten year old than a girl of seven. She believes it is her duty to be the lady of the house when mommy is not around. After all, when daddy left, she had to grow up really quickly. She has asthma, loves her brother and new daddy. She enjoys looking at the stars at night, and her doll is called Lucy.
Chris Douglas- is 13, lives with his father in Halifax, 60 miles away. He likes camping like Paul. Except his own dad is too busy with his job to take him. Picking on his brother because of jealousy caused weekly family visits in Truro to be cut back. In the beginning he resented Joe for taking over his family. Now he’s able to handle it.
Edward- is the 14-year-old boy Joe never knew he had. Edward was placed with the CAS at the age of two. Since then a succession of foster homes has left him confused and angry, also a victim of child abuse. One day he wants to find his father and pay him back, big time. He blames his biological dad for his past troubles. He feels if only his dad had been around, maybe the boy’s life would have been much better.
* * *
CAS Director’s office – Truro, Nova Scotia
Ms. Barbara Sloan, or “Iron Tongue” as subordinates whispered behind her back, sat at a cluttered desk. She listened intently as a woman's voice reached from the Children's Aid office in London, Ontario.
Foster Placement Supervisor Dutton, was speaking about Edward, Joe Thompson’s son. Iron Tongue chewed on her pencil, patiently waiting for the congenial tone to finish. As she tiredly leaned back in her chair a further barrage of conversation came across the wire.
After a pause, Ms. Dutton said, "Ms. Sloan, I’m glad you found the data we sent by special courier last week to be helpful. This information sharing is fully supported by our CAS Director and President of the Board.”
“Barb,” please. Yes, I did. And thank you very much.”
“It’s nice to be able to help out another jurisdiction. And please call me Emily.”
“I consider this a personal favor,” Barb Sloan responded. She sensed the Supervisor digesting her responses. She continued, “This gentleman is a valuable staff member and quite anxious to bring the matter to a quick solution. If the boy is his son, Mr. Thompson wishes to instigate recovery proceedings.”
“Of course, as long as there are no legal complications."
"Legal complications?" asked Barb Sloan.
"The boy may now be adopted. If that's the case, then perhaps the matter should remain closed. At least that's what we have discussed in our office.
Barb wasn’t totally pleased...