Here’s The Lark – Chapter Two. Hope you enjoy it. The good news is I’ve worked out a few curly issues I had with the last half of the book, thanks to one of my readers brainstorming over the plot.

So am firing on all cylinders to complete the story in the coming weeks. When I say ‘complete’ I mean the first draft! Lots of work polishing the turd as they say! Hahaha

The Lark – Chapter 2 – Playing Safe

As Laura’s car swings around the cliff towards home, she glances across Larkson Bay where several yachts and a couple of launches gloat on their off-shore moorings. They lazily turn with the outgoing tide, their noses pointing to the horizon. Laura gazes across at the tiny village nestled across the bay.

Driving into town, Laura shivers at the memory of the boating accident. It’s hard to believe it happened fifteen years ago. It felt like a nightmare, an unreality which grew in traumatic detail as night terrors haunted both sisters throughout their childhoods.

She can see herself and younger sister, eight-year-old Grace, waking up in the morning, excited about another day of sailing along the east coast towards Tutukaka. Their father had promised a barbecue on the shore at Whangateau beach, but they wanted to catch fish before breakfast without waking their parents. It would be a surprise. Nothing beats butter-fried, fresh fish on your plate to start the day. They dress, grab an apple from the bowl on top of the galley countertop and step up the stairs to the teak-lined deck of their parent’s forty-four-foot yacht, Lark Song. They built the sleek ketch with twin masts, especially for these waters, cruising the inlets and hugging the magical New Zealand coastline.

‘Here, put this on,’ Laura whispers, shoving a bright orange life jacket at her younger sister and pulling one over her own shoulders, belting it firmly and checking Grace’s clips. Laura grips the dinghy’s rope and pulls it towards them before clambering onboard with their fishing gear. A bright red bucket already sits upside down inside the dingy, perfect for holding their early morning catch.

Once they are both seated, Laura pushes the wooden oars into the rowlocks and rows away from Lark Song, extending the rope still tethering the two sisters rowboat to the Ketch. It’s tempting to release the rope and row out into the open ocean, but their mother always warned them to never go out without life preservers and never untie the rowboat. Laura let out a good fifty meters of rope before securing it around a metal cleat.

The sisters chat while Laura hooks raw bait onto their hand lines. She scans across the bay at a couple of yachts moored closer to the shore. One powerboat has dropped anchor too, about two-hundred-metres from where the girls are fishing. It won’t take them long to catch four fresh fish. One each is all they need. Their father taught them to respect the sea and all living creatures, so they never dump rubbish or drink bottles into the ocean and never fish out more than they can eat. Their upbringing focussed on nature and not plundering the ocean or the land.

In the distance an old man, with a grey wiry beard, is facing the pair and fishing with a fancy-looking rod. He waves at the two girls in the rowboat. They smile, both waving back. There’s no point shouting anything, as it’s unlikely he would hear them, and their parents are still fast asleep.

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It’s a bit short so will be expanding this or merging it with the following chapter. Some reworking possible in the next few weeks. Here’s the link if you would like to see my other books online. Sign up for my monthly newsletter to get updates of my progress with The Lark and other projects.

Hope you enjoy this too and have a relaxing weekend!