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Authors: Lisa J Hobman

Tags: #Edinburgh, #friendship, #overcoming tragedy, #Scotland, #Unrequited love

The Girl Before Eve

BOOK: The Girl Before Eve
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THE GIRL BEFORE EVE

 

 

 

BY

LISA J HOBMAN

 

This is a fictional work. The names, characters, incidents, places, and locations are solely the concepts and products of the author’s imagination or are used to create a fictitious story and should not be construed as real.

 

5 PRINCE PUBLISHING AND BOOKS, LLC

PO Box 16507

Denver, CO 80216

www.5PrinceBooks.com

 

ISBN 13: 978-1-939217-95-0 ISBN 10: 1-939217-95-4

 

The Girl Before Eve

Lisa J. Hobman

Copyright Lisa J. Hobman 2014

Published by 5 Prince Publishing

 

Front Cover Viola Estrella

Author Photo: [email protected]

 

 

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission, except in the case of brief quotations, reviews, and articles. For any other permission please contact 5 Prince Publishing and Books, LLC.

 

First Edition/First Printing January 2014Printed U.S.A.

 

5 PRINCE PUBLISHING AND BOOKS, LLC.

 

 

Dedication

For Rich

We have over twenty years of history together and there are so many songs that eloquently put into words how I feel about you…too many to fit onto one CD. But “Somersault” by Zero 7 is one of my favourites.

 

Acknowledgements

I would like to say a huge thank you to my wonderful family, especially Rich, Grace, Mum and Dad for supporting me, advising me and putting up with me since this writing journey began. As always, you are the stars in my sky and I love you with all of my heart.

 

A huge hug to all of my friends, old and new, who have happily taken this roller coaster ride with me and have put up with my incessant talking about books, plot lines and rankings. I adore you all.

 

To my wonderful beta reading team – it’s been such a busy year and I can’t express how much I appreciate you taking time out of your busy lives to read my books and give your valued opinions.

 

I’ve made so many new friends through Facebook, authors and readers alike, and so a massive thank you to the abso-flippin-lutely faberoo gang from my Facebook page and to my wonderful street team. You’ve stuck with me and have encouraged me to keep going. Thank you for helping me to fulfil this dream. The Happy Hobman Dancers rock!

 

To all of the blogs and pages who have supported me, helped spread the word about my books and shared my news, you and everything you do are very much appreciated.

 

Thank you also to my wonderful 5 Prince family, including my amazing editor Linda. It’s wonderful to be a part of such a positive, friendly team. Long may it continue.

 

Prologue

 

Friends Will Be Friends
(Queen)

The Beginning of Lily and Adam - Primary School 1986

“She is
my
friend, Stewart Campbell, and if I see you pinch anything from her ever, ever again or try to push her over, I will punch you on the nose, and then I’ll tell Mrs. Craven and she’ll tell your mum, and then you’ll be grounded…
forever
!” Adam yelled as he towered over the snivelling little blonde-haired boy whose T-shirt he was grasping.

“I’m going to tell my dad on you, and he’ll come to your house and kick your dad’s arse, and he’s lots bigger than your dad, you smelly pig!” Stewart retorted through his tears and threw the packet of crisps he’d stolen on the playground, the contents spilling out. He stamped on the crisps, crumbling them under his feet.

Adam laughed in the other boy’s face. “Oh no, he isn’t, and now I’m going to tell Mrs. Craven that you said a swear word! Don’t you ever hurt her again, do you hear me? She’s a girl and you should never,
ever
hit girls or pinch their snack. And now you’ve dropped it on the floor and she hasn’t got one. You’re just mean and nasty, Stewart Campbell. And that’s why nobody likes you!” Adam released the blonde boy’s T-shirt and pushed him away. The boy ran off to the other side of the playground just as the lunchtime supervisor came around the corner. She must have noticed the gathered crowd of children.

“Everything alright over here, Adam?” the tall, red-haired lady asked with a sour look on her face.

“Yes, Mrs. Craven. Stewart Campbell said a rude word though, so I told him off and said I was going to tell.”

“Oh did he now? That boy needs to learn some manners. I think I’ll tell his teacher. Perhaps a quick call home might be in order.” Mrs. Craven glanced toward Adam’s friend just as Lily wiped the tears from her eyes and pushed the mass of wild, dark curls from her damp face. “Lily? Have you been crying?”

Lily nodded.

“What happened?” Mrs. Craven asked, narrowing her eyes.

Lily worriedly looked to Adam.

“It’s okay, Mrs. Craven. Stewart was being mean and he took her snack and threw it on the floor and stamped on it. But I told him off for that, too.”

Mrs. Craven smiled and ruffled Adam’s scruffy, dark hair. “Eeeh, for nothing but a six-year-old boy you do look after her well, don’t you, son? You keep that up.” She patted his head lightly and then turned to walk over to where Stewart had run off to sulk.

Once Mrs. Craven was out of sight and the crowd of children had dispersed, Adam turned to Lily. “Here, you can have the rest of my crisps if you like.” He held out the blue crinkly packet to her.

“Thank you, Adders,” she croaked, almost in a whisper. “You’re my bestest friend.”

“Aye, I know that and you’re my bestest friend too, Lil, and Stewart Campbell is just a big meanie. You need to stay away from him. I’ll make sure he isn’t nasty to you again though. Don’t worry.” The two children walked over to the grass and sat down side by side.

“Are you coming to my house for tea on Saturday? My papa says we can have the paddling pool out if it’s sunny?” Lily asked munching on the salt and vinegar crisps.

Adam nodded. “Yep…I can’t wait. I’ve got one of those big water pistols that soak you through, so you’d better watch out.” He nudged her with a wide grin fixed in place.

She giggled. “Yeah, well I’m going to make sure I get my big sand castle bucket out then, and it holds about ten gallons of water, so
you’d
better watch out.” She nudged him back.

He snorted. “It
does
not! And anyway I’m a faster runner than you, so
you’d
better watch out.” He chuckled.

“It does, too! And you’re not faster than me…
you
run like a girl!” Lily jumped to her feet and set off at a sprint, her musical laughter echoing behind her.

“I’ll get you Lily Macrae! Just you wait!” Adam laughed heartily as he sprang up from the grass and set off in pursuit.

And there began the soundtrack to Adam and Lily’s lives…

 

Chapter One

Eve, The Apple of My Eye
(Bell X1)

Many Years Later - July 2009

“She simply lit up every room she walked into… Her beautiful smile was contagious…and her eyes…she showed every emotion in those beautiful blue eyes. My life…sorry…my life will be a whole lot darker without her in it. She had this amazing ability to make everyone she encountered feel cared for…loved even. She would have been an amazing mother… I just…I just
know
she would. She had that way about her. Always worried about others…never herself. She was one of a kind…my Eve…my beautiful,
beautiful
Evie. She was supposed to be my happy ever after…my forever…and she was taken…stolen… I’m so sorry…I can’t…” Adam’s breath caught in his throat and his legs weakened. With clenched eyes, he gripped the lectern for support.

The congregation sat silently as he spoke his heartfelt words. Tears trailed down each and every face. The forlorn and lost expressions of his closest family and friends told him their hearts were aching and broken, just like his own. The loss was too much. Too sudden. With a pain inside him that no one could even
begin
to understand, Adam Langton returned to his seat, placed his head in his hands and let the pent-up emotion break free. His shoulders shuddered and the tears flowed unabashedly from his stinging, sore eyes. Arms came around him offering what little comfort they could, but nothing…
no one
could do anything to quell the ache in his chest. She was
gone
.

Nothing could bring her back.

All the
if onlys
and
what ifs
swirled around his head like a carousel spinning out of control, but what was the point? What was the point of anything anymore? His bright, wonderful future had been snatched away. The prospect of having children with her and watching them grow up, of growing old with her beside him, was gone.

Jeff Buckley’s
Hallelujah
echoed around the vast space of the eighteenth century church as Adam’s friends and family left the building with obviously heavy hearts.

♥♥♥

Back at the house Lily walked into the kitchen where she found Adam staring out of the window over the pretty cottage garden. The glass of whiskey in his hand remained untouched. People talked in hushed voices in the lounge, but it appeared they had seen fit to leave him alone with his grief for a while.

Walking over to where he stood, she placed her arm around him, her hand on his left shoulder, her head on his right. She heaved a sigh. “How are you holding up, Adders?”

“Oh…you know…fair to
utterly
crap…you?”

“About the same I’d say.” She wiped her eyes and he hugged her to his side. “Your eulogy was just so…beautiful. I know it’s a stupid thing to say, but she would have loved what you said about her.”

“Thanks, Lil. That means a lot.” His lip quivered, and he placed his glass on the worktop before rubbing his eyes. “It doesn’t feel real. I keep expecting her to shout down and tell me off for not replacing the loo roll, or to climb into bed beside me and stick her freezing cold feet on my legs to warm them up. Or snuggle up to me on the sofa whilst she pretends not to cry at some soppy ad on TV. But…that won’t ever happen again. I’ll
never
kiss her again…I’ll
never
hold her again.” He shook his head and whispered, “I’ll…I’ll never make love to her again. It’s all gone…she’s
gone
.” A deep sob broke free from his body.

Lily buried her head into his neck and held on tight as her best friend let his anguish and sadness pour out onto her.

Adam’s mother walked through from the lounge. “Adam, darling. Some of the…gosh what do you call them? Guests? Anyway…some people are leaving and I think maybe you should come and say goodbye.” Adam nodded and left the room.

His mother shook her head. “Goodness, what do you call people at something like this?
Guests
sound so…
happy
. It seems wrong.” Confusion and salt water clouded her eyes.

Lily thought for a moment. “Friends. I think you simply call them friends. They all loved her after all, Gwen,” she said before standing and putting her arm around Gwen’s shoulders.

Gwen slid her arm around Lily’s waist. “Are you okay, dear? I know it must have been quite a shock for you. And I can tell you’re trying to stay strong for Adam…but she was your friend too.”

Lily’s lip quivered so she bit it. Her eyes stung with unshed tears. “Yes…she was…the best. But Adam is in bits right now. I’ll grieve in my own time. He needs me.”

Gwen kissed her cheek. “Lily, you are
such
a good friend. You always have been. I’m so glad he has you.” Her voice wavered.

Lily tried to smile. “He would do exactly the same for me.”

Gwen squeezed her hand again, nodding. “He would, dear. He would.” Gwen turned to go to her son.

♥♥♥

In the lounge, family and friends surrounded Adam, patting his arm, hugging him and smiling sadly. It was all just too much. He wanted everyone to leave now. He needed to be alone. He had always hated being the centre of attention. That was always Eve’s place. She deserved it and handled it so well. She was interesting and fun. He enjoyed watching her from the sidelines, watching her work her magic, watching with adoration as others inadvertently fell in love with her, too.

BOOK: The Girl Before Eve
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