Romance, humor, family drama, with a touch of Buddhism. Sound interesting?
When approaching life's problems, Sophie sees in black and white. That is, when they're someone else's problems. So when it comes to her sister, Sophie is sure she has all the answers, and offers them without hesitation. If only her sister would listen.
Then, through a series of chance encounters, she meets Sam, who is witty, kind, and downright unflappable. Sophie has the overwhelming sense that she's known him before, and as a relationship builds between them, odd visions invade her mind. Though she tries to dismiss them, their persistence will not allow it.
As someone who is quick to judge others, she is intrigued by Sam's ability to accept people as they are. She begins to see him as a role model, but try as she may, his accepting nature is difficult to emulate.
Will Sophie ever be able to put her hasty judgments aside and realize not every problem has a simple solution?
“I’ve got some things to drop off for Mom’s birthday party,” Sophie offered when her sister answered the door. Wearing an oversized buttoned shirt sporting paint stains, Evelyn’s dark hair was pulled back, with a few strands spilling around her face. Even when doing grunt work, she was beautiful. Her sister had always been the gorgeous one, Sophie the cute one. Evelyn, long chestnut hair, dark eyes. Sophie, blue eyes, golden curls.
Evelyn was painting the living room. Christian, of course, was nowhere to be seen.
Sophie dropped the bags at her feet. “Are you kidding me? Why isn’t he doing this, or least helping you?”
“Sophie, don’t start,” Evelyn replied as she pushed the hair from her face. “I enjoy doing it. Besides, his mom wanted to take him to dinner. He’s having a bad day, so I thought he should go.”
A bad day? He does nothing! Sophie picked the bags back up. “Un-frickin-believable,” she muttered as she headed toward the kitchen. “Why are you doing this now anyway, two days before the party? Couldn’t it have waited for another time, when I could have helped you?”
Evelyn followed her and started unloading cups, plates, and plastic ware. “It’s one room. It’s not a big deal. I just want the place to look nice.”
“Sit your butt down, Evie,” Sophie ordered in a softer tone. Evelyn plopped herself into a black Windsor chair. “You’re hopeless, you know that? What am I going to do with you?” She waved a bundle of asparagus.
Her sister gave a weary smile and rested her temple on her hand. “Shut up, brat, and pour me an iced tea.”
Sophie did so and sat across from her. She gave Evelyn a long stare. How many times did they have to have this conversation?
Evelyn rolled her eyes. “Sophie, I’m not in the mood for this. Why can’t you just let it go?”
“Because it’s ridiculous! Look, it’s not like I don’t have compassion for the guy.”
“Yes, as a matter of fact, I do,” Sophie answered in her sweet, but slightly superior manner, lifting her chin just a tad. “But how stinkin’ hard is it to swallow a pill? I mean, seriously. You do everything around here, not to mention support him. Oh, and his mother. Don’t get me started.”
“I don’t do everything,” Evelyn argued. “And no one is getting you started, Sophie. I don’t want to talk about it, remember?” She rose from her seat, stomped into the living room, and picked up the paint roller she had left in the pan.
Sophie followed her with her hands on her hips, wanting to say more. As her sister vigorously rolled the sage colored paint on the wall, she suddenly felt guilty for lecturing her. This was a conversation they’d had countless times, often with their mother in the mix. Those were the times Evelyn hated the most, because she felt so outnumbered. Still, nothing ever changed.
Sophie dropped her arms, turned toward the kitchen, and finished putting party supplies away. Why did something so simple have to be so hard?
Living in Las Vegas since she was two, Shelly Hickman has witnessed many changes in the city over the years. She graduated from UNLV with a Bachelor of Art in 1990, and in her early twenties worked as an illustrator for a contractor for the Nevada Test Site. In the mid-90s, she returned to school to earn her Masters degree in Elementary Education. She now teaches computer applications and multimedia at a middle school in Las Vegas. She loves to write about people, examining their flaws, their humor, spirituality, and personal growth. Shelly lives with her husband, two children, and their dog, Frankie.