Award Winning Best Selling Florida Author Yvonne Mason

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When Fates Collide-Excerpt

Hi…I’m Hope Harrington and this is my story…

 

I sound rather boring don’t I? Well, to tell you the truth I am…or rather…I was. Before I met Alex Morgan, my life was as exciting as watching paint dry. Don’t laugh, it’s true.

I had a boring day job I hated; I had no life, few friends and dated only when the mood struck me. To say that I had no life would actually be an understatement.

I worked for a firm in downtown Tampa as a secretary and spent my free time club hopping in Ybor City…and that’s how I met Alex.

 

But…I’m getting ahead of myself.

 

I came into this world on October 10, 1969 in an unremarkable way, to unremarkable parents (except for my mother naming me after my Uncle Ken’s horse, but don’t even get me started on that!) and grew up in an unremarkable town in Florida. Yep…I’m a Native Floridian. Yippee, although to the Yankees and tourists that visit you’d think I was some kind of treasure.

I am enough American Indian to carry a card stating that the government can keep tabs on me (but I don’t) but it’s hard to look at me with my long black hair, black eyes and sharp features and think I’m anything else but a true native; but am mixed with some good old fashioned European too.

In High School I hung out with, what was called back in my day, “nerds.” The rejects of society; that was where you could find me. I did nothing, went nowhere and when I left home at eighteen to see the world…that sad trend continued. I moved from one boring city in Florida to another…but at least Tampa has a skyline!

All my life I’ve been different, afraid to get to close to people for fear of what they’d think of me. You see…I’m an empath, a true and gifted empath; not the ridiculous crap you see on TV on the ghost shows. My gift is real, something I suspect handed down through the generations of my parent’s…both sides, although it was never something my mother wanted to discuss and my dad? Forget it. No discussing weird things with him…ever.

That right there gave me all the answer I needed. As for my path…my “religion”…whatever you want to call it, well, let’s just say that’s as complicated as I am and I’ll get into that another time.

See, told you I’m boring.

I figured that I’d live in Tampa until I died and be buried in an unremarkable grave with an unremarkable graveside service and have a just as equally unremarkable epitaph on my marker. “Here lies Hope. She went nowhere and did nothing with her life.”

That probably was going to be my existence too, for real – that is…until I met Alex.

            That’s because she tried to arrest me. All of a sudden, I went from having no life to more life than I’d ever dreamed possible.

            But…Alex still had a job to do and that was where I came in. Maybe I could use my empathic ability for more than allowing it to drive me nearly insane with feelings I couldn’t control and strange dreams I couldn’t shake.

            Alex still needs to catch her bad guy and now we are on the hunt…

 

       Yeah, yeah ,yeah, Hope says she had no life until she met me. Well, if you want to talk about no life, let me just give you some history. My name is Alex, I know it sounds like a guy. But I hate my given name, Alexandra Morgan.

   

         Who in the hell wants to be named for a stripper? No, not the woman who gave birth to me way back in the day, but the friend she had in the club they both stripped for. It was a dirty dive in Georgia in downtown Atlanta. One of those nondescript places that all the out of town conventioneers go to when they are in town for what they called “conventions.”

 

          Anyway, the woman who gave birth to me out of wedlock, needed a name in a hurry, because I was born in a hurry. The only one she could think of was the name of her friend, Alexandra the Great. I know geeky name, but what do you expect with a stripper?

 

          As soon as I was old enough (which was seventeen) I blew that place and never looked back, striking out on my own. Everyone said I would never amount to much because I had too much going against me. I was born to a woman who wouldn’t look after me, I was only five feet tall and I was afraid of my shadow. Maybe that was from all the leering drunks I had to put up with as a child.

 

        When I left, I dusted the dirt off my feet and re-created myself. Since I am green eyed, I decided to capitalize on my Celtic heritage (at least my mother said she was of Irish heritage) and made sure my hair was the right color of red, well actually burgundy. I learned ground fighting and boxing. I got my concealed weapons permit, learned how to hit the kill zone and went to work as a freelance bounty hunt.

 

        Yep, I was laughed at by men and women alike, but what the hell, my motto is “Failure is not an Option.”

 

         That is until I got my first jacket. A jacket is a file on a jumper. A jumper is someone who has failed to show up for a court appearance. The bonding company has 45 days to get them in court or they lose their money. That is where I come in. I go look for the suckers and haul their happy asses back to jail.

 

          This jacket was bad from the beginning, He was a master of disguises and we really had no idea what he looked like. He had been arrested as a woman by the name of Hope Harrington and his last known address was Ybor City, Florida.

 

           So off I went to Ybor City and arrested Hope Harrington, only it wasn’t my jumper. The Hope Harrington I picked up was really a female who had never left the State of Florida, much less Tampa.             

 

 

 

 

Hope

 

            Right you are Alex. My big dreams of getting away from ‘the sunshine state’ went the way of the dodo and I settled in Tampa. I’ll never forget the day we met…or rather the day you shackled me up like a common criminal. Kidding…it wasn’t that bad, though anyone watching would have thought you were dragging to Old Sparky the way I acted huh?

            I’d had quite the day at Fenton, Milton and Leibevitz, the large office building right smack in downtown Tampa on Ashley Avenue, where I worked as a secretary. ‘Secretary’ is nothing but a fancy word for 411 receptionist for the entire building which is what I was. If people weren’t sure what they needed, how to reach who they needed or needed directions; that was where I came in. The building was gorgeous actually…glassed all on the outside; a beautiful walkway to the parking garage (number 7 – my parking spot on level 1!) and lots of natural lighting, but that is about all I can say for it.

            I’d had a crank caller that day; he called and called and called. “Is Mike Hunt there?” and more stupid, juvenile crap that I hadn’t heard since childhood. I finally traced his number and sent the cops to pay him a visit. Then he called from another number and it seemed that he got his buddies involved too because they all began calling, tying up every one of the phone lines so no one else could get through.

            So, I traced all the calls (it took a while and I got even more gutter humor – which I normally don’t mind…as long as it’s someone else that’s getting the brunt of it!) sent the cops out again (hopefully had them arrested) and the calls stopped…but I was hardly seen as the heroine in the situation.

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