This week on Excerpt Tuesday, ERYNN NEWMAN is here sharing about her newest release, Out of Darkness.
Elisabeth’s dad pulled to a stop in front of her little bungalow.
Theirs. Hers and Drew’s.
Her dad helped her out of the car and kept his arm around her as they walked up the steps to the porch. Mom followed behind carrying her train in the world’s saddest processional.
She tried to unlock the door with shaking hands. The keys clattered onto the porch, and her dad scooped them up. His hands were steady and sure, sliding the key into the lock. The door swung open, but Elisabeth’s feet refused to cross the threshold—the threshold Drew was supposed to carry her over.
Her breathing hitched, and she clutched her dad’s hand at her waist. “Daddy, I can’t.”
He wrapped both arms around her, and she buried her face in his collar.
“It’s okay, baby. I’ve got you.” He somehow managed to get them inside and over to the couch.
She sat wrapped up in his arms as he whispered a prayer against her hair. She tried to close her eyes, but she couldn’t stop picturing the explosion. Instead, she focused on a blank spot on the opposite wall—the spot she and Drew had saved for their wedding portrait.
Mom and Dad bookended her on the couch, rubbing her back but not speaking. They knew. There was nothing they could say.
The sun began to set, and her mom broke their silent vigil. “Should I light some lamps? It’s getting dark in here.”
“No, dark is good.” She stood on wobbly legs. “You’ve done enough. Why don’t you go home? I’ll call if—”
“Don’t you want us to stay?” Her mother looked stricken. “I don’t want to leave you like this. I can sleep on the couch, or…”
“No, Mom. I just want to be alone.”
“At least let me help you get out of your dress.” She swiped at a stain on the bodice. “You’re soaked.”
“No!” Elisabeth shrank back, wrapping her arms around herself. “I can’t take it off—not yet.” That would mean… “I can’t.”
Her mom started to argue, but Daddy intervened. “It’s okay, baby. Whatever you need.” He turned to her mom. “Come on, Patricia. Let’s give her some space.” His hand covered the small of her back as he led her to the door.
Drew always did that—leading me, making me feel safe.
Her dad stopped and turned around. Grasping Elisabeth’s face in his hands, he kissed her forehead. His eyes shone in the waning light, his shaggy brown hair grayer than before.
Mom stepped in and wrapped her in a tight hug, leaving her cheek wet.
And then they were gone.
She locked the door behind them—something Drew always insisted on when she lived by herself. She wasn’t supposed to be alone anymore. Not ever again.
She grabbed his scarf from the peg by the door and wrapped it around her neck—inhaling him. She needed to feel close to him. Groping her way over to the phone, she entered the voicemail code. Drew’s voice cut through the too-quiet house. “Goodnight, beautiful. I can’t wait to make you Mrs. Marek tomorrow. I love you. For always.”
Then the automated voice broke in. “To delete this message, press three. To save it and go on, press four. To repeat your messages, press five.”
She pressed five as she fumbled down the hall to the bedroom. She didn’t bother to pull back the covers, just curled up against the pillows with the phone tucked under her ear.
She pressed five again.
Out Of Darkness Blurb
A bride and a widow in the same day, Elisabeth’s prayers are about to be answered . . . if the CIA, international arms dealers, and her best friend don’t stand in the way.
Elisabeth Allen gave her heart to Jesus as a little girl and to Drew Marek as a teenager. When their wedding day finally arrives, it’s the happiest day of her life–until a car bomb transforms her dream come true into a living nightmare.
As Best Man at the wedding, Gabriel Di Salvo promises Drew–his best friend and CIA partner–he’ll look after Elisabeth, but he never dreams it will become necessary so soon. As Elisabeth struggles to put the pieces of her life back together without Drew, Gabe becomes her rock, and as they share their grief and begin to heal, their friendship gradually deepens into something more.
Three years later, Gabe and Elisabeth are planning a future together when he receives a shocking call from the one man who can upend his happiness: Drew. Suspecting someone at the CIA is behind his abduction, Drew refuses to come home. Instead, he asks Gabe to bring Elisabeth to him. Now Gabe just has to figure out how to let her go.
Drew and Elisabeth race across Europe, dodging international arms dealers and attempting to reclaim what was stolen from them. But years of captivity and torture have left their mark on Drew. He is no longer the same boy Elisabeth fell in love with, but he is still her husband, and she’s determined to build something new and leave her relationship with Gabe in the past if her heart will get the memo.
When their enemies close in and the threat of a terrorist attack escalates, Gabe may be the only person they can trust. Drew, Elisabeth, and Gabe are thrown into a fight for their lives–one that will test their loyalties to God, country . . . and each other.
ERYNN NEWMAN is a pastor’s kid, raised in churches all over the Eastern Seaboard. She writes heart-gripping romance with a dash of seat-gripping suspense. As a little girl, she created rich fantasy worlds and imaginary friends that followed her into adulthood, when she realized that meant she was either a crazy person or a writer—or maybe both. Out of Darkness was born as she wandered the cobblestone streets of Europe during a semester abroad.
Since earning her degree in Christian Studies, she has traveled the world and served as a missionary, a counselor, an ESL teacher, and a nanny. Though she has never worked with the CIA, her DVR contains a veritable Who’s Who of international spies.
She is passionate about God’s glory and storytelling, and is blessed to be able to use one to accomplish the other. She is a Carolina girl, a wife, and Mama to a very busy little boy, two cats, and a gaggle of characters that live inside her head.