by Rosemarie Naramore from the November 5, 2012 issue
Tagline: Officer Holly Tanner knew that if she started making exceptions, the owner of the trucking company might start taking advantage...
Observations: OMG. Talk about a Sixth Sense twist!!! I was totally pulled in by this story and didn't begin to suspect the twist until way later than I would have expected. I absolutely loved how different this was from the usual, and flabbergasted and delighted that they chose to publish it. If I had thought of this idea, I might not have submitted it, thinking there was little chance they'd buy it. I would have been very wrong!
For those of you who doubted the wording of the guidelines where they talk about "relationships" not romance, here's proof. This is clearly a story about their relationship and how a husband accepts that the wife is merely doing her job and needs some tender loving care because she's been doing entirely too much of it lately. When I read this story, I got a warm fuzzy feeling about marriage and what a good one looks like.
If you haven't read the story twice, I highly suggest you do. You'll see exactly what I'm talking about, everything appears totally different when you read with the knowledge that they're married.
He passed her the paperwork and their hands made brief contact. Holly felt a jolt pass between them. She knew he felt it too when their eyes connected over the document.
Here you see the physical attraction, just like a normal Woman's World story. That's where you take the bait. Then, Naramore reels you in a little, here:
Dave walked over to the driver. She watched him walk away. Tall and well-built, he looked great in his jeans. She shook her head, rejecting the thought. She was working, for Pete's sake.
Seems like a regular first meet, but knowing they're married, that last sentence makes sense from a different perspective.
Also way back in the beginning, this paragraph:
She realized [the driver] was nervous about his mistake, but she couldn't let this particular trucking company off the hook. Even if they had the biggest fleet of trucks in town, they had to follow the rules, same as everyone. Besides, the driver's boss, of all people, knew better than to let a driver leave without that registration.
See what I mean? "This particular trucking company" and "the driver's boss, of all people," are phrases that don't raise any flags when you read the first time, but take on a new meaning the second time around.
By the end of the story when Dave is crossing the line verbally and physically invading Officer Tanner's personal space, you're realizing and smiling and nodding.
I thought this story was masterfully written. Brava!
Photo by Timitrius (cc)