It’s no secret authors have to be picky about their writing, especially when it comes to a full length novel. Sometimes we simply write so much that when we see the final word count, we have to agree to cut a few scenes in order to keep readers from turning 126 years old while reading. Today I wanted to share with you a deleted scene from the second Donovan Circus adventure, BURNED. I think the Lucy and Gabriel ‘shippers will like it! :)
This scene takes place after Lucy tells Gabriel that she can’t be with anyone right now due to all the chaos surrounding them (but before any murders or visiting the Grayson Circus.)
Deleted Scene – Lucy and Gabriel:
I went about the next day as any other. That evening after the show, Delia and I were caught in the crowd leaving the tent. I always liked hearing the astonished whispers and excited voices after a night at our show. Tonight was no exception and I smiled at two children in front of us squealing about the flaming motorcycles inside the metal ball.
I stopped dead in my tracks when I saw them: Gabriel, with his arm casually draped around some woman – excuse me, whore – with blonde hair and a smile like Barbie. His lips went down to her ear and whispered something; she laughed, batting her eyelashes up at him.
My blood ran hot and even though I knew I probably looked murderous, I couldn’t stop staring. Delia pressed up against me to get out of everyone’s way as they walked past. She gave me an uncomfortable look.
“Lucy, you are turning very red. Please do not catch fire in a human crowd, especially this close to me.”
“Sorry. Um, I’m gonna go change so I can give my suit to Sasha. Has a rip in it.” I didn’t look away from the train wreck in front of me. Someone bumped into us and I took the chance to bolt.
I mumbled my goodbyes, taking a sharp left to my camper. I kept my head down, hoping Gabriel didn’t see me and knowing I’d owe Delia cookies later.
After I changed clothes, I swung by Sasha’s office, her giant camper that threatened to explode with neon feathers and sequins galore. She sewed the tiny rip up in no time. After thanking Sasha several times for the last minute request, I went back to my camper to hang it up. I wouldn’t need it until tomorrow for the show. Done with that errand, I left my trailer to see if anyone needed any help with clean up. Between tents, I caught a lone smoker waiting for me.
Gabriel straightened up and met me halfway. “Hey.”
“Where you headed?”
I stopped in my tracks to glare at him. “What does it matter? You have other things to do.”
He adopted a deadpan tone. “Oh good, you’re mad about something. Now what are you doing?”
“Me? What the hell were you doing? Hanging all over that whor – girl earlier,” I retorted.
“Oh, you saw that.” A lazy smile crossed his face and I resisted the urge to shove him into a tent.
“Something tells me I was supposed to.”
He shrugged and my hand accidentally caught flame. He spared an eyebrow raise at it while I shook it off and tried to get my jealousy under control. The fire refused to go out despite my shaking, like a cartoon flame from hell.
“Do I need to be worried about that?” he asked, pointing his cigarette at my hand.
“What happened to all that, “I love you, I won’t hurt you,” blah, blah, bullshit?” I asked, my arms now waving around in frustration. His eyes didn’t leave my still-flaming hand.
“You said you wanna go back to being the old us,” he said with a shrug. “This is the old us, dummy. We argue, we share secrets; you hang out with your friends and I find temporary ones.”
Heat flashed through me and I took a deep breath. “You’re going with the manwhore approach, I see.”
The infuriatingly sexy grin grew. “You said you’d be fine with that.”
Fire skittered up my arm and I sucked in a sharp breath. His know-it-all tone drove me mad. Yet another reason to avoid a relationship with Gabriel – nothing was ever easy with him, in any sense of the word. If we dated, I’d spend half the time wanting to kill him.
“You don’t really expect me to sit around and wait for you while you stubbornly make a point for some stupid reason, do you?” he asked.
“I thought you loved me.” Damn. I hadn’t meant to sound so sad. My fire went away at the serious mood swing.
Gabriel dropped his cool tone. “I do love you.”
“Then why would you sleep with other women?” I asked.
“I haven’t slept with her yet, you know, so drop the sad eyes.”
“I guess I hadn’t really expected you’d find someone that fast. Then again…”
“Do you want to be with me?” He gestured with his cigarette hand, the ashes floating to the ground.
I opened and closed my mouth a few times and he took my silence for the answer.
“Exactly,” he said. “I’m not going to stop being who I am. That’s not exactly fair to make me wait it out if you’re not going to make a decision, is it? Whenever you decide you want to be with me, I’m yours. But until then, I’m being the old Gabriel you said you needed.”
Steam might leak from my ears at any moment. It had happened once, when I was a seven-year-old tantrum-thrower. And even worse, I realized as my heart sank and the heat simmered down, Gabriel was right. I couldn’t pull a bitch move like that. If I wanted to keep him in my life, I had to let him live how he wanted. I’d made a choice and now I had to stick with it.
I cleared my throat and gave a short nod. “Okay. Yeah, I understand. You’re right, I’ll readjust. We’ll be us again.”
As I turned to walk away, I thought I saw his expression fall with disappointment. “So that’s it?”
“Yeah…I mean, you’re right,” I said, shrugging. “That’s not fair and I want you to be happy.”
“You’re what makes me happy. Or whatever. Those girls are just…filling the black hole in my chest,” he called after me.
“I don’t think that’s up to me to fix,” I replied. “But I’ll see you later. Promise.”
I’ll just go ahead and put it out there: You’re a liar if you don’t like cupcakes. I’m excited to announce Viva La Cupcake will be hosting my second book signing, this time to celebrate the release of BURNED. Each year for Earth Day, Grandin Village closes off the road, shops open up their doors, small businesses set up tents and table, and people are encouraged to walk along the street and talk to all the vendors. I’ll be right on the corner in front of the cupcake shop, so I’m pretty stoked!
Viva La Cupcake makes all kinds of amazing flavors (including gluten/sugar free by request). My favorite is by far the Black and White which is like a Hostess cupcake, though the S’mores, Apple Cobbler, and Blueberry always get me jazzed up, too. At my last book signing at Viva, Pennie (the owner) was kind enough to make themed cupcakes – cotton candy for the circus!
Readers will be able to buy paperback copies of all 3 of my books and since it’s Earth Day, I’ll have a QR code ready for the ebook versions, too! Each purchase (paperback or Kindle) will be entered to win a $25 Amazon gift card! I’ll also have some bookmarks and other fun things at the table. If you’re in the Roanoke or surrounding area, I hope you stop by to say hello!