|Image credit: haraldmuc / 123RF Stock Photo|
Welcome back! I'm still hard at work on the sequel to my samurai story, tentatively titled The Plum Blossom Covenant. Last week, we met the hero, Yasahiro Tanaka, as he returned to his homeland after several years in America. This week, we join his parents, Hiro and Hanako Tanaka, the main characters in The Samurai's Garden:
"Do you see it? Over there, to the left."
Hanako Tanaka squinted and peered in the direction her husband pointed. Lately, she'd had more and more trouble seeing things at a distance. Could she really be aged enough that her eyes were failing? Hopefully, she would not have to wear spectacles. It would be so embarrassing.
"I can make out the sails now! Surely it won’t be too much longer." Hiromasa’s voice rose with excitement, and Hanako's heart beat faster, both with excitement and with the thrill of being Hiro's wife. After all these years, her heart still fluttered each time she looked at the tall, strong former samurai who had swept into her life and made her world complete. At fifty-three, he still made an imposing figure. She'd noticed the admiring gazes of several other women. It happened everywhere they went. Her handsome husband stayed fit through hard work on the farm. But it was his intelligence and willingness to try new innovations that made Tanaka Farms a great success.
"Patience, Hiro," she reminded him. "Wishes won’t make the ship travel any faster."
They had traveled to the main island so they could meet Yasa’s ship. They'd been apprehensive about taking the train, but thanks to the new railroads traversing the country, the trip had only taken a fraction of the time it used to. They both missed him terribly and wanted to be reunited with him as soon as possible.
Hiro smiled at her now and put an arm around her. "You are right as always, my little flower. I must learn to be more patient. Our son will arrive when he arrives." He squeezed her harder. "But I have missed him so."
Heedless of the stares they garnered at their public display of affection, she turned toward him. She reached around to squeeze him back, reveling in the sheer power contained in his yukata.
"I have missed him, too," she reminded him. "But you told him he needed to go."
He chuckled. "Yes, it was my fault. Are you angry about that?"
"No, not at all. I understand why he needed to go. Other than the visits we made to Tokyo, and the years he spent at the University in Sapporo, he never knew about life outside our village. If he is to be a leader, like his father, he had to learn more about the world. So each day I went to the temple and prayed for his safety. And each day I felt better about him. He will be a well-educated, strong leader, like his father."
Thanks for stopping by! Please let me know what you think of this sample, and be sure to read the excerpts offered by other authors by going to Sweet Saturday Samples. If you haven't already read Hiro's story, The Samurai's Garden is available at Astraea Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and many other ebook outlets.