Annabelle Tinker is shocked to learn her sister has been committed to the mental ward, but has to agree that it's not quite normal to believe your boyfriend has been abducted by aliens.
Then the boyfriend's handsome brother shows up asking questions, and Annabelle knows something strange is going on.
Length: Mid Novel
Word Count: 75,483
Genre: Fantasy Romance
Available formats: PDF, RTF, Epub, HTML, Mobipocket (.prc)
© Cover Art by Kat Richards, September 2005
New Concepts Publishing
Lake Park, GA 31636
This is a work of fiction. All characters, events, and places are of the author's imagination and not to be confused with fact. Any resemblance to living persons or events is merely coincidence.
Erin is in the psychiatric ward.
That's what her mother had said. Annabelle didn't let herself think about it. Not yet. She didn't have enough information to start going off the deep end. One of us has to stay calm, she thought. Here she was, at the University of North Carolina Medical Center, after driving from Raleigh-Durham Airport through a storm-darkened day which matched her mood. The huge building stood cold and spare. People came here for help, yet it seemed to Annabelle a heartless place. She pulled her too-light windbreaker around her to ward off the wind and dashed for the automatic doors.
People littered the area like discarded candy wrappers. The buzz of whispered conversations filled the air. Skirting the oversized potted palms, Annabelle approached the information desk sprawled in the middle of the lobby.
The elderly volunteer looked up from a supermarket tabloid. The Weekly Investigator, Annabelle noted with approval.
"May I help you?" the volunteer asked.
"My sister, Erin Tinker, is a patient. Can you tell me where to find her?"
"Certainly. How's that spelled?" The woman bent her blue hair toward the computer screen in front of her, hunting and pecking the last name, T-I-N-K-E-R. Instead of the six strokes it usually took, with all the backspacing and correcting it took more like twenty. Finally, the woman looked up.
"I'll need some identification, please. A driver's license will do."
Annabelle breathed a sigh. Here it came, she thought, as she pulled her wallet from her jacket pocket. After a moment's digging, she handed over her driver's license.
"Umm, let's see, Miss Tinker." The volunteer glanced up, her old eyes twinkling.
Okay, okay, get it over with. Annabelle pasted a smile she hoped was tolerant on her lips.
"Annabelle Tinker? That's just so darling! How imaginative. You aren't a fairy in disguise, are you?" The old woman gave the license back.
"No," Annabelle said, wishing for the millionth time Walt Disney had never learned to draw.
"Here's your pass, dear. Clip it to your blouse while you're in the hospital. That way the brute squad won't toss you out." The woman smiled and waved her hand toward the back of the lobby. "Take that elevator right there to the eleventh floor, and when you get off turn right. Your sister's in Room 1135."
"Thank you." Annabelle took the pass and turned toward the elevators. Eleventh floor? Were they crazy putting crazy people on the eleventh floor? What if someone tried to jump?
She squashed the concern. It was none of her business if they put the psych ward on the roof. She had all she could handle taking care of her mother and sister.
The elevator's electronic voice announced the eleventh floor and Annabelle got off, turning right as the receptionist had instructed.
"Darling, oh, I'm so glad you're here!"
Annabelle looked toward the voice and saw her mother coming, histrionic sails billowing.