Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Marigny Street by Annie Rose Welch

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Do you believe in the power of dreams?

Way down south on Marigny Street in the heart of New Orleans, the land of Catholic intersessions, purgatory, and supernatural superstitions, young Evangeline Chenier dreams of a radiant boy who saves her from a storm. She takes the dream seriously – in her family, dreams are sometimes more than dreams. Sometimes they foretell the future. Sometimes they create it.

Years later, Eva is no longer the same wistful girl but a hardened woman who no longer believes in dreams. Losing faith in her gift, she becomes lost in a nightmare of emotion, mourning her son, separating from her husband, and stewing in a dead-end job. And then fate brings her an unlikely surprise: one of the most famous movie stars in the world, Gabriel Roberts.

Caught by something in his eyes, Eva agrees to show him the real Big Easy on his last night in New Orleans—an evening that turns into four dreamy days spent recapturing lost faith and discovering a love neither expected. Realizing Gabriel is the boy from her childhood dream, Eva must leave everything behind—her husband, her family, her history, and the beautiful city she calls home—and gamble it all for the dream that has saved her on MARIGNY STREET.


Did he just say “date”?
I pondered that for a moment. But before I could stop myself I blurted out, “There’s this place close to my house. Nouvelle Musique. It’s in walking distance, actually. It’s nothing spectacular from the look of it, but it’s fun. The drinks are the best in town and so is the music. On weekends, they usually have a live band and the atmosphere is casual. If you want to truly experience New Orleans, this is the place to do it.”
“Perfect. I’ll meet you at your place, say around eight?”
“Sounds good. I live on Marigny Street. I’m just a few blocks away from the French Quarter. My house is the only one on the block that has a statue of the angel Gabriel in the front. He feeds the birds.” I smiled “And judging by your accent, it seems you’ve traveled far. Something tells me you’ll have no problem finding me.” I started walking toward the office again. I could feel his eyes move with me.
“Wait—” he called out.
I turned to face him.
“Your name. You didn’t tell me your name.”
“You didn’t ask.” I laughed.
He grinned. “I am now.”
“Eva,” I shouted back. “And you are?”
A look of pure shock spread across his face. He hesitated and then said slowly, “Gabriel.” He paused for another moment. “Gabriel Roberts.”
“See you at eight, Gabriel-Gabriel Roberts.” I waved and walked away.
As soon as the angel was out of sight, I couldn’t help but regret my decision. Did I really just commit myself to a date? Everyone had been right to think I was losing my mind. What had I gotten myself into? I should have said no. What was I thinking? I wanted to go back and cancel. Tell him I was sick—I didn’t have to specify mentally—and not up to it. But his face. And those eyes. And I couldn’t entirely blame it on the low blood sugar that temporarily paralyzed me—there was something else. More than just his appearance, something bigger that stole my heart.
I remembered Ruby and Sandra talking about the actor they were in love with. Roberts was his last name. It took a moment for me to put together Roberts and Gabriel. Gabriel Roberts. He was the big star of Saving Angels—the  big star of Hollywood. The entire world, no doubt, would have known who he was right away. Except for me. I was so wrapped up in my own little world, Hollywood was the furthest place from my mind.
Get it together, I thought. You can do this. It’s just one night—drinks and music. No big deal. But I was nervous and curious and possibly losing what was left of my sanity.
Something else was nagging me. I had forgotten something. I stopped in front of the office building, trying to figure out what was bothering me. I had my purse—what else could there be? The paper—the important document. That, I didn’t have. I must have forgotten it on the step. Damn. I’d done it again. There was no going back either, there was no time for that.
Monday would come and I would have to face the music and possible termination. But that seemed moot in comparison to my big date night. I had to get home. I needed to relax and try to figure out what the hell I was going to do. The only thing that came to mind was the only thing any normal person would do: I would google this Gabriel-Gabriel Roberts character.

About the Author:

Born and raised in New Orleans, Annie has a habit of shortening her words and telling long stories. She speaks with a southern flair and cooks with it too. At the tender age of twenty- one, she hitched up her wagons (took her first plane ride) and moved out west to the big shake (California). Her writing career began one sleepless night when she imagined a gorgeous woman and a man with maniacal hair floating above her like lightening bugs falling from the sky. Curious about them, their story, and why they were floating around in her head, she sat down and penned (typed) her first novel, Marigny Street. A dream come true for her, she hasn’t stopped writing since. She loves a damn good love story, always has, no matter what the genre. She is particularly moved by imperfect love that in its own unique way is perfect, the notion of love at first sight, soul mates, and things that are generally out of the norm.

When she’s not writing she enjoys dabbling in photography and finding new, inspirational music to add to her collection. She currently (still) resides in the big shake (although her southern roots are calling her home) with her husband, daughter, and their two peculiar dogs, Boudreaux and Tabasco (who, call her crazy, bark with an accent). 

For lagniappe (a little extra), a virtual cup of cafĂ© au lait and beignets, please visit Annie’s website
She can also be found on Facebook & Twitter

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