Thanks for joining us, Kit. Tell us, what do you see as the most challenging aspect of motherhood?
Raising my three year old daughter, Jessy, as a single mother while hiding her existence from a sadistic cult leader, David Masters.
Folding her arms across her full chest, Katrina stood very straight and very still. She didn’t owe him any explanation. Yet, she felt she owed him something, since he had stood between her and disaster tonight. Besides, he wasn’t about to let it go, and Katrina couldn’t allow that. For the sake of her little girl and her own sanity, she had to make sure the mesmerizing Caleb McBride left her world as quickly and as suddenly as he had entered it. She relented, “It’s about my daughter, Caleb.”
She understood, though suspected he did not, that was more the euphemism than the cruel truth. “One would think it would be because of your daughter you’d help. I know being a mother you must understand the pain my sister’s child is feeling.”
“You don’t understand.”
“Help me understand.”
“What does your daughter have to do with this?”
“I can’t help you because David Masters is her father.”
What is your proudest mom moment?
There isn’t a moment that goes by that I am not proud of Jessy. She is bright, vivacious and for being so young, she sees the good in people that others might miss.
Before either said a word, Jessy ran into the kitchen, jumped into her mother’s arms kissed, and asked, “Who’s that?”
Donna followed behind and responded, “Ah, Mister Wonderful-eyes.”
He nodded an acknowledgement.
Jessy stared and then ran up closer to stare even more closely. “Mommy, they are hug me eyes.”
What is the most valuable thing your mother taught you?
When you give love, it is unconditional and forever.
Jessy asked Caleb to re-sing his Nosey song. “For you gentle-eyes anything.” And he did.
She giggled. "Mommy's sleeping," Jessy said in a quiet voice as she began to regale Caleb with tales of bunnies and armadillos. He'd glance at her every now and then in the rearview mirror to check to make certain her seat belt stayed secure and, oh, of course to sip of her glorious smile. They stopped at an intersection. He turned in his seat to face her. She had unzipped her jacket and for the first time he noticed Jessy wore a unique, obviously handmade stone amber-tone arrowhead necklace attached to a woven fine hemp cord. "Where did you get that necklace, sweetie-button-nose with the gorgeous eyelashes?"
She giggled. "Mommy gave it to me.”
“It looks special.”
“Did she tell you where she got it?”
“Where sugar eyes?”
“From her box of memories.”
“Did she say how she got?”
“Uh-huh.” “How giggle face?”
“She said it was from her first love."
A flash of something entered Caleb's gaze. He shook his head in wonderment, stared down at Katrina's ethereal beauty and felt a smile grow from the inside out. Jessy quickly reverted to her ‘dillo story, and Caleb listened, but part of his mind drifted elsewhere, wondering about that first love.
Tell us about your daughter. Does she take after you at all?
Jessy has amazing instincts and seems to notice things on a different level. Somehow, though, the haunting I sense in our apartment doesn’t seem to affect her adversely. It is as if she understands it’s a kind spirit.
As for being like me, I was always more bashful and self-conscience than Jessy, and not as quick to laugh. My Jessy, throws herself happily into every situation and has an independent streak that I fully admire. However, now and then, she worries about acceptance and she probably does get that from me.
Excerpt: (dialogue about meeting Caleb’s four year old nephew)
Jessy pursed her lips thoughtfully. “He’s a big boy. Big boys don’t like little girls.”
“Are you fun?” asked Caleb. His voice was inquisitive.
“Do you laugh?”
“Yes,” she giggled.
She tried, “You are silly.”
“Can you run?” “Fast!”
“How could he not like such an adorable and perfect little girl?” Caleb refuted. “I know I do.”
A bright smile widened Jessy’s lips, and she initiated an animated conversation that lasted over fifteen minutes. Finally winded, Jessy plucked her stuffed gray and black ninestriped armadillo off the seat next to her and hugged it close as she stared out the window.
OK, how about some This or That?
June Cleaver or Morticia Adams?
I think the way I approach life is more like June Cleaver, but the circumstances surrounding my life resembles Morticia Adams’ life.
Curlers to bed or lucky to remember a morning comb through?
When it comes to curlers to bed or lucky to remember a morning comb through, I am more the knot it up and forget gal.
Carol Brady or the Dowager Countess?
Oh definitely I am more a Carol Brady than a Downton Abbey dowager countess. Having said that, give me a good old period piece to watch and I am hooked.
Home cooked or take out?
Owning a restaurant makes it easy to gather up a home cooked meal, but I don’t mind when Caleb shows up with take out, or cooks a meal for me. For someone so manly, he certainly knows his way around a kitchen.
Fine China or paper plates?
I adore fine china over paper plates, and the older the better. Only, I like my china mismatched and never complain about a chip.
Wash your mouth out with soap or pay the swear jar?
Though my own mother would certainly grab the lavender soap to wash out my mouth or my sister’s, I go the sear jar route. Everything takes like soap for days, and I couldn’t do that to my little Jessy. Then again, she would put buttons and Legos in the swear jar.
Thank you so much for the visit, and I hope to see you in the pages of my chaotic and harrowing world.
So glad you could be here, Kit. Here's more about Naked Twister:
Once a professional cult deprogrammer who had lived on the edge of danger, Katrina “Kit” Cante now devotes herself to a Philadelphia Society Hill restaurant and her three-year old daughter. Caleb McBride, though, needs Katrina to rescue his sister from David Masters' cult and intends to force Katrina out of retirement.
Neither one is prepared for the provocative feelings that they arouses in each other so easily. At the same time neither anticipated being haunted or being the heinous focus of Masters’ psychotic attentions.
For more about Angelica Hart & Zi and their projects:
angelicahartandzi.com (all books can be bought through the webpage)
http://dawnsreadingnook.blogspot (Writers Write... Writing Partners Feud - Every Thursday)
http://champagnebooks.blogspot.com/ (Tattle and Wrye Reviews 1st of every month)