Desolation Point – Bonus Scene!

dpcoverWith perfect timing for the festive season (and the silly season at work), Tumbledown is edited, proofed, and out of my hands.

During one conversation in the book, there’s a reference to a scene that didn’t make the final cut of Desolation Point. It’s one of those references where you can use your imagination to fill in the blanks, but I had the deleted scene sitting around on my hard drive doing nowt to earn its keep, so I thought I’d put it up as a bonus on here. It’s also a nice little scene for Agent Castillo (whom I always had a soft spot for, and who gets to see a lot more action in Tumbledown.)

I’ve put in a cut, because here be spoilers for those who’ve not read Desolation Point.

~ ~ ~

This scene takes place just before the one where Alex wakes up in the hospital.

~ ~ ~

The constant tapping was driving Sarah crazy. It had insinuated itself into her dreams, setting her teeth on edge and compelling her to open her eyes. She stifled a groan; the anesthetic from her surgery had left her groggy and nauseated. Drawing on past experience, she took a moment to lie still and wait for the room to stop spinning. Objects slowly came into focus: the monitor recording her vitals, a half-empty IV bag, a glass of water with beads of condensation forming on its exterior. She licked her lips, suddenly aware of how thirsty she was. When she raised her head, intending to reach for the glass, she realized where the tapping was coming from. An FBI agent sat a short distance from her bed, hunching his knees to accommodate the low chair. He had thrown his jacket over the back of the chair, and the leather holster holding his gun stood out starkly against his crumpled pale blue shirt. With his brow creased in concentration, he was using one finger on each hand to type onto a laptop.

Sarah snaked her hand out toward the water, and the tapping ceased.

“Here, let me.”

For someone so tall, he moved with surprising grace. He dropped a straw into the water to enable her to drink without sitting up. She studied his face in the soft light, trying to remember where she had seen him before.

“Agent Castillo,” he said, evidently noticing her puzzled look. “I was at the camp with you just before you were evacuated, but we were never formally introduced.” He gave her an easy smile. “You were mostly unconscious, I think.”

She nodded cautiously and allowed him to take the water away.

“Where’s Alex?” Her throat was sore, but the question came out with sufficient force that she didn’t need to repeat it.

“I should get your doctor.” Castillo looked over his shoulder toward a crack in the drapes surrounding the bed. “She wanted to speak to you as soon as you woke.”

“Why?” This time Sarah barely managed a croak. “Why would?” The dawning understanding on Castillo’s face was lost in a blur of tears. “Did Alex…Is she…?”

Castillo shook his head, his eyes wide. “Fuck. No, it’s…” He took hold of the drape and dragged it open, cursing when the hooks snared on the rail and impeded its progress. “Sarah, she’s right here.”

He pushed the monitor aside and stepped back, giving Sarah a clear view across the room. She wiped her eyes on her bandaged wrist and stared with disbelief at the figure in the adjacent bed. Alex was sitting up against a set of pillows. She appeared to be deeply asleep, but the ventilator was nowhere to be seen, and she was breathing for herself.

“We thought it might be easier to keep an eye on you both if you were in the same room,” Castillo said.

“Mmhm.” Sarah was busy trying to work out exactly what she was attached to and how much of it was mobile. “Do you know how to get these down?” she asked, patting the side rail.

“Hey, wait, now.” Castillo ran a hand through his close-cropped hair. “You just got out of surgery. You have that tube in your side.”

Sarah followed his eye-line to the surgical drain she hadn’t previously noticed. “Oh, for fuck’s sake,” she said, exasperated. The plastic bottle lifted easily enough, but she grunted at the discomfort as the tube shifted. “You sorted that rail out yet?”

“Your doc’s gonna have my ass for this,” Castillo muttered. He lowered the rail regardless, obviously having figured out that Sarah would climb over it if he failed to help her.

“I’ll take all the blame, I promise.” She grasped the hand he offered her and sat up, swinging her legs to the floor. “Shit.” Staring at her muck-coated feet, she wondered how quick Castillo would be to say “I told you so” if she fainted. When the light-headedness faded, she saw that he had dragged a La-Z-Boy chair close to Alex’s bedside and placed blankets on the chair in readiness.

He shrugged. “You seem pretty damn determined to me.”

Collecting her IV and the drain in one hand, Sarah used her other to cling to the arm he held out. The floor was cool, and as she took her first tentative step she could feel the sting and prickle of the myriad cuts on the soles of her feet.

“Doin’ okay?” Castillo asked.

“Yep.” She was shuffling with all the agility of an arthritic ninety-year-old, but the chair and Alex’s bed were getting closer. She could see Alex in more detail now. There was a thin oxygen tube resting beneath her nose, and a jagged line of sutures had been used to close the gash at her temple. A dressing covered the wound Deakin had made when he pressed his knife into her throat. She still looked pale and very sick, but Sarah found herself concentrating on the breaths Alex was taking, breaths that seemed easier and came with only the slightest hint of a wheeze.

Sarah’s own breath left her in a rush as she lowered herself into the chair. She dimly sensed Castillo hanging her IV and setting the drain on the floor. He draped a blanket around her shoulders and laid another one over her knee.

“I’ll go get that ass-kicking out the way,” he told her, once he seemed certain she was comfortable and unlikely to end up on the floor.

“Make sure you tell her it was all my idea,” Sarah said. He had pushed the chair right up to the bed-rail, and she was able to take hold of Alex’s hand without difficulty. She cradled it in both of hers as tears blinded her. “Thank you,” she whispered, just before the door shut behind him with a quiet click.

She knew that he would be back soon, probably with her doctor and her surgeon in tow, and most likely a psychiatrist too. She didn’t care. They could yell at her to their heart’s content; there was no way she was leaving Alex to wake up alone.

***

If you enjoyed that and would like a bit more bonus stuff, there’s another deleted scene hidden in this blog post!

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About Cari Hunter

Cari Hunter is the author of "Snowbound", "Desolation Point" and "Tumbledown", and the Dark Peak series of crime thrillers - "No Good Reason", "Cold to the Touch", and "A Quiet Death" - all published by Bold Strokes Books.
This entry was posted in Deleted Scene, Desolation Point, Novels, Tumbledown. Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Desolation Point – Bonus Scene!

  1. Pam says:

    That was great! I loved the book, so anything else you have lying around … yeah, feel free to post it!

  2. Yep, this is pretty much the way it happened in my head, but is really cool to read it! Must have been meant to be ’cause I picked up Desolation Point today to read again with my afternoonoffrunallmyerrandsbeforefivepm lunch. I like having lunch with old friends like Alex and Sarah! Really looking forward to tumbledown.

  3. Pingback: News Roundup: L Festive Vids, New Books from Devon Marshall & Angela Peach, Lesley Davis Fantasy Collection, Desolation Point Bonus Scene, & More! | UK Lesbian Fiction

  4. AF says:

    That was great!! I loved Desolation Point and just finished proofing Tumbledown!!!!! Keep ’em coming!!

    • Cari Hunter says:

      Heh, If you’ve read Tumbledown and you’re still talking to me, I’m going to take that as a good sign 😉

      • AF says:

        IT’S AN AWESOME SIGN!!!!! I proofed Desolation Point and fell in love with Alex and Sarah. To proof Tumbledown was the icing on the cake. I have been with my partner for 30 years and we still strive to make the connection these girls have. As we all know, real life is a bit different. I’ve been out of work 3 years and Mary has been there for me all the way, but proofing for BSB and enjoying the wonderful books all you authors put out are just awesome!!

        • Cari Hunter says:

          Fabulous, I’m so happy you enjoyed it. I wrote it for the same reason; I’d fallen in love with Alex and Sarah, and just didn’t want to let them go after one book. Being able to write them two years down the line when their relationship has strengthened was an absolute joy. I think we write/read to escape real life for a while. What better way to forget your own troubles than immersing yourself in someone else’s loves, laughs, and worries for a while?

          • Alyssa says:

            It’s so nice to hear your responses from a lonely proof reader. Thanks for everything you put out there. I can’t wait for more!!

            • Cari Hunter says:

              I’m working on more. I’m on nights at the moment (it’s taking my fingers a good while to find the right keys here!) and left myself on a right bloody cliffhanger. Can’t wait till my brain’s functioning again, and I can get back to it 🙂

  5. Lori says:

    Thanks for sharing this, I enjoyed reading it. I posted a few comments on here a while back after reading Desolation Point. I dropped by now because I just noticed Tumbledown on Amazon. Congratulations on wrapping that up, that must be quite a good feeling. I read a lot in this genre when I can spare the time– it’s my escapism from work and grad school! Since you are so great about responding here maybe you can satisfy my curiosity about the publishing process-? Why does a very good little scene like the one above get cut? It really adds to the story. Is there some page count rule? 🙂 And is there some strategy behind the publishers having the print version available on release day but not the Kindle version? With some books weeks seem to pass before they get around to posting the digital version.

    Best of luck with Tumbledown. I very rarely go look for a book on release day but I will this one. Here’s hoping that Kindle version is ready on 2/18. 🙂

    • Cari Hunter says:

      Hey Lori, cheers for checking back in 🙂 It’s always a lovely feeling to get to that point where your story has a cover, the editing is done, it’s up on Amazon, and listed as an “Upcoming Release” on the spanking new BSB site. Course, this is about the time the nerves start to kick in, but it’s out of my hands now, there’s nothing I can do but hope people like it!

      As for that editing process…Word count certainly wasn’t an issue with Desolation Point – Tumbledown is about 20,000 words longer than DP! Scenes like this one get lost mainly to tighten up the story. It was a scene that was a nice to have rather than a need to have, and the scene that was kept in (the one where Alex wakes up and Sarah’s already at her side) covered everything that needed to be said. I won’t lie, it’s hard to lose stuff, but it’s also good to have someone tell you when the pacing is off, or you’re dragging things out.

      BSB release their own e-book versions on the first of the month (so Tumbledown should be available through them on February 1st) and have a small window of exclusivity with the e-books before they’re released onto Kindle. That window has been getting much smaller of late (it’s now often a couple of weeks after the paperback release – with Snowbound it was a few months) so hopefully you won’t have to wait too long if you are holding out for the Kindle version.

      I’ll be doing a paperback giveaway as soon as I receive my author copies, so keep an eye out for that 🙂

  6. Pingback: Tumbledown Giveaway Winners, and Consolation Prize: Desolation Point Deleted Scenes | Cari Hunter

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