Thursday, April 11, 2013

Bonus scene from Falling Into You by Jasinda Wilder


Falling Into You by Jasinda Wilder is one of the most powerful and emotional books that we have read this year.  We fell in love with Colton and Nelly.  When we first met Colt, it was at his brother Kyle's funeral and we can honestly say that at that moment, we were his! Thank you to Jasinda Wilder for sharing The Funeral scene in Colton's point of view with us. We loved it!

Summary: 

I wasn't always in love with Colton Calloway; I was in love with his younger brother, Kyle, first. Kyle was my first one true love, my first in every way.
Then, one stormy August night, he died, and the person I was died with him.

Colton didn't teach me how to live. He didn't heal the pain. He didn't make it okay. He taught me how to hurt, how to not be okay, and, eventually, how to let go






THE FUNERAL (COLTON)

Copyright © 2013 by Jasinda Wilder

The diesel engine rumbles as I idle in the parking lot of the funeral home.
“Barton Hollow” plays in the background, on low. I’m not even really listening to
it, it’s just on. I can’t get myself out of the truck. I’m frozen, stuck. My legs, my arms
won’t work. To get out, to see him dead and gone, in a box? I can’t do it.
But I have to.
I suck in a shuddering breath, pinching the bridge of my nose. I have to do this.
I twist the key and yank it out, stopping the music mid-word. I open the door and
slide to the ground, mud and wet gravel crunching squishing underfoot. I’m about to
shut to the door when a thought struck me.
The truck is borrowed, lent to me by one of the guys who works at my shop,
Javier. Javi is a smoker. I lean in to the truck, standing on the running board, and
rummage through the glove box. Bingo, a pack of Marlboro Menthols and a Zippo.
I snag them and shove them into the inside pocket of my suit coat. I can’t believe
I’m wearing a suit. I hate the damn thing. The tie is choking me, sleeves are driving
my wrists nuts, the suit coat is hot in the mugginess of a storm-wet Michigan late
summer afternoon.
I bet Kyle wouldn’t care if I’m wearing a suit or not.
The thought strikes me before I can stop it. The next one is even more brutal:
Kyle doesn’t care about anything anymore, because he’s dead.
Fuck.
I’m not wearing the suit for him. I’m wearing the suit so I don’t stick out any
more than already do. Mom and Dad don’t know shit about me. I’ve been living in
New York since I was seventeen and they’ve buried themselves in don’t-ask-don’t-
tell land.
I sigh again and wish I could smoke now, but I’m already late. I pull open
the door to the funeral home and immediately the heavy silence of the building is
oppressive. Everything is tastefully opulent. Rich, thick maroon carpeting with a
gold fleur-de-lis pattern, graceful mahogany side-tables, paintings of fox hunts and
horses and hounds and men in top hats, high ceilings. It makes me nervous. My
hands are huge and hard and rough and permanently grease-stained. I don’t belong
in this place.
Kyle doesn’t either.
I find the viewing in an upstairs room. It’s full of people, Mom and Dad’s
friends, aunts and uncles, cousins, Kyle’s school friends. I don’t know anyone. Kyle
was eleven when I left, and I really hadn’t spent any time around him. I was the bad
kid, the troublesome older brother. He was the golden child. I stayed in my room
or the garage. He had friends, but I never met any of them, except the neighbor girl.
Nell, I think her name was? Kyle and Nell were inseparable, I know that much.
I remember her as a skinny, pretty little thing with blond hair, seen from
a distance as she Kyle ran off on their golden-children adventures. I only really
met her a couple times. She ran into me in the basement, once. She and Kyle were
swimming off the dock and I was taking a break from studying to watch a movie.
She was eight or so, dripping wet, wearing a red-and-yellow one-piece bathing suit.
She froze, dripping water on the carpet, staring at me, wide-eyed. I was coming out
of the bathroom and she just stood there, silent, wet, waiting. I moved past her and
sat back down on the couch and she vanished into the bathroom. The other time I
ran into her was the summer before I graduated. She and Kyle were having their
joint eleventh birthday party and I was hiding in my room. I waited until the party
had moved outside before slipping downstairs to grab a Coke and some chips before
going back to playing Madden between math and science homework. And of course,
there she was, wrapped in a towel, wet from the lake once again, hair stringy and
drying around her shoulders, munching on a corn chip. She actually waved at me
and said hi, so I returned the greeting, grabbed my snack and ran back upstairs. She
called me back halfway up and asked why I wasn’t at the party. I just shrugged and
told her I had tests to study for. I doubt she remembers the interactions, now.
I stand by the back door, out of the way. Dad sees me, nods. The only greeting
I’ll get, and the only one I want. Mom doesn’t see me; she’s too busy quietly sobbing.
She was the one who called me. They have the number for my shop, they
just never bother to call. Out of sight, out of mind. So when the shop phone rang at
ten on a Sunday night, I knew something was wrong. When I heard Mom’s voice,
unintelligible and sobbing, my heart sank. All I could get from her was “Kyle” and
“tree” and “dead” and “come home for the funeral.”
So I borrowed Javi’s truck the next morning and drove back to Michigan.
And now here I am, watching everyone cry and unable to myself, despite the grief
crushing me.
People file past the coffin, sniffling. Sobs come from various parts of the room.
I can’t, won’t look at him. But I have to. I stand over him, reflect on how damn
good-looking the kid was. So much fucking promise. He could have been so many
things, accomplished so much. My eyes burn. I move back to my spot next to the
door.
Dad gets up and talks, then a built, blond kid who seems to be Kyle’s buddy.
Mom can’t. Finally, a girl gets up in front of the podium. I don’t recognize her at first.
She’s got this hair that’s the rare kind of true, perfect strawberry blond, thick and
twisted in a braid, loose strands pinned back. I’m stunned by her beauty. Who is this
girl? She looks vaguely familiar. The gray-green eyes, the high cheekbones…it hits
me. This is Nell. God…damn. She grew up. She’s hot, suddenly.
I nearly vomit with self-loathing as those thoughts float through me. And it
only gets worse when she speaks.
“I loved Kyle.” She pauses, broken. Her teeth are clenched so hard you can
barely understand her. “I loved him so much. I still do, but…he’s gone. I don’t know
what else to say. “He asked me to marry him. I told him we were too young. I told
him…I would go to California with him. He was going to go to Stanford and play
football. But I said no, not yet…and now he’s gone.”
As she spoke, she pulled a diamond ring off her right hand and holds it up for
people to see. A few people gasp in surprise. I see pity and sympathy on so many
faces as they turn to whisper together about the poor Hawthorne girl…what she went
through…so sad…

She and Kyle got together, then. Makes sense, I guess. Makes my lust for her
even worse.
Then, she’s gone. She rushes past the podium and past me, not seeing
anything, anyone. Her mom started after her, but her father caught Rachels’ arm to
keep her back. I saw her father’s mouth move, read the words: Let her go, Rach. She
needs time.
Judging by the look on Nell’s face, I’d say she’s gonna need a whole hell of a lot
more than time. But it’s not my place.
I’m not going after her, I’m not. I’m just going in the same direction. I need a
smoke. I quit a couple years ago, but every once in a while, I need one. I stop halfway
across the grass between the funeral home and the tree where Nell has stopped,
and I pull the pack of smokes free, light one. I just stand there for a while, smoking,
letting the fine drizzle wet me through. Finally, after I finish the smoke, I stub the
butt on my shoe and stick it in my coat pocket. This isn’t the place to litter with
cigarette butts.
I can’t stand it any more. She’s shuddering. I can see her shoulder shaking.
She’s got an arm in a cast, her forehead is pressed to the bark of the giant oak tree.
I’m behind her, taking off my coat and settling it across her shoulders. It cooled
off while we were inside, and now it’s kinda chilly out. Her skin is pebbled with
goosebumps. She turns in place and looks up at me, and…fuck. Just fuck. Her eyes
are hypnotic. Her hair is coming loose, stringy and sticking to her pale ivory skin. I
shouldn’t be thinking about how beautiful she is, but I can’t help it. She’s so broken
right now, and I recognize the guilt in her eyes, the horror, the overwhelming
burden of grief. She’s not dealing, she’s just…shutting down.
She feels the smokes in the coat and pulls them out, looks at them as if she’s
never seen cigarettes before. I take them from her and light one. She looks on
curiously.
“I know, I know,” I say. “These things’ll kill me.”
“I didn’t say anything.” Her voice is low, barely above a whisper.
“You don’t have to. I can see it in your eyes. You disapprove.”
“I guess. Smoking is bad. Maybe it’s an inherited dislike.” She shrugged. “I’ve
never known anyone who smokes.”
“Now you do,” Colton said. “I don’t smoke much. Socially, usually. Or when I’m
stressed.”
“This counts as stress, I think.”
“The death of my baby brother?” I ask. “Yeah. This is a chain-smoking
occasion.” I look away, stared at the glowing orange cherry of my cigarette.
“Can I try?” She seems surprised by her own request.
I let her try, chuckling at the way she coughs. She’s dizzy, I can tell. I steady her
when she sways, and ignore the spark when my fingers touch her skin.
Suddenly, the reality of Kyle’s death hits me all over again, and I slump back
against the tree. It’s wet and rough against my shirt. I feel her take the cigarette from
my fingers and hear her inhale, cough a tiny bit.
Her mom shows up just outside the back door where we both exited.
“Shit,” I say. “Guess it’s time to go.”

She glances at her mom, and then back to me. She hesitates. “Can I ride with

you?"
The request floors me. Goddamn it. I’m trying to not see her beauty, see her
grief, see how much she needs someone to understand. It’s not me, can’t be me. I
don’t know her. She’s hurting.
But I can’t refuse.
We get in my truck and “Barton Hollow” comes back on as I turn the key in the
ignition. Her face is haunted, as if something has pierced her heart.
At some point during the short ride to the graveyard, her presence becomes
familiar…almost necessary. As if her in this truck next to me helps my own grief.
The funeral is awful. She runs, and I chase her. I just run after her, pacing her.
Damn, the girl can run. Tireless, despite a broken arm. Eventually she twists her
ankle and falls, and I carry her. I hate that I like how she feels in my arms. I’m glad
when I can put her down and let her walk.
I’m glad I can focus on her and let my own grief sit, set aside for when I’m
alone.
Finally, she’s home, resting, and I can collapse on the bed in my parents’ spare
room. Sleep comes, fitfully, after a long, long time. I wake in the wee hours, and even
though I haven’t seen my baby brother in years, I miss him. I mourn him. Mom and
Dad told me the story, Nell and Kyle on a trip up to the cabin, a tree falling and Kyle
saving Nell. Totally Kyle, sacrificing himself to save someone else.
I find myself out on the dock, an old guitar from Dad’s college days in one
hand, a six-pack of Budweiser cans and a bottle of Jameson in the other.
I get drunk slowly, playing every song I know.
Then she’s here, limping across the deck, dressed in loose sweatpants and a
hoodie that do nothing to disguise her body.
God I’m such a dick.
Her face is drawn, wan, pained, shuttered. She’s not letting herself feel. I can
see it, recognize it in myself.
I hand her the bottle of whiskey, watch her drink and chuckle at the way she
reacts. I hand her a beer as a chaser, knowing I shouldn’t encourage her to drink, but
knowing too that she needs something, anything other than guilt and grief.
We chat about nothing for a few minutes, and then it comes out of me: “You
can’t hold it in forever.”
“Yes I can.” She thought she could, too.
I know better. “You’ll go crazy. It’ll come out, one way or another.”
“Better crazy than broken.” She believes that too.
“You’re not broken. You’re hurting.” I stand up and piss of the dock, and I’m
mid-stream before I realize how much an asshole thing to do that is.
“Did you really have to do that right in front of me?” Her voice is rife with
equal parts irritation, disgust, and laughter.
“Sorry. Guess that was kinda rude, huh? I wasn’t thinking.”
“Damn right it was rude,” she says.
“I said I’m sorry. Didn’t take you for the squeamish type, though.”
“I’m not squeamish. I just have to pee, too, and I can’t do it like you did, right
off the dock.”

I chuckle. “Oh…well…I don’t know what to tell you. You could try squatting off
the edge?”
She snorts. “Sshh-yeah. That’d work real well. I’d either fall in or pee on my
ankles. Probably both.”
“I wouldn’t let you fall in.”
“I don’t doubt that.” Her voice is serious, rippling with too many things to
identify.
I walk her to my parents’ basement so she can pee, remembering the time we
ran into each other here, but not saying anything about it.
I play a song for her, hoping it will jar her emotions loose. Almost, but not
quite. The music is working on her though. I can see the emotions rising. She
asks me to play something else, so I do Simon & Garfunkel. I see it hit, deep. She’s
shaking. So then, just to get her to let loose a bit, I play a song I wrote years ago. It
doesn’t have words, just humming and odd vocalizations. It’s a goodbye I wrote to
the people I’ve lost in my life.
It hits her, hard and deep. She chokes off a sob and runs, hobbles really. I let
her go, let her fall to the sand. Kneel beside her, touch her back and let her cry. She
needs it.
Then she stops herself. Drags herself to her feet, stumbles. I catch her. Of
course I do. And damn it, she’s so right in my arms, perfect. Snug, warm. Trembling.
She rests her forehead on my chest, and I let her.
She looks up into my eyes, her eyes the color of storm clouds and moss, and it’s
hard to breathe. So sad, so broken, so in need of even a single moment of peace. So
beautiful, so lost in the hurricane of hurt.
I taste her lips, and it’s wrong. So, so right, tasting of liquor and beer and tears
and chapstick, smelling of shampoo and woman. So right, so wrong. It’s just a kiss,
an innocent kiss. My arms around her shoulders, just holding her. It’s just a kiss, but
it’s wrong and it’s heady and dizzying and incredible.
Then she’s gone, cursing, asking herself what the fuck she’s doing and I’m
wondering the same thing.
“Don’t touch me,” she hisses, when I try to pull her back to explain. “That…that
was wrong. So wrong. I’m sorry…so sorry.”
“No, Nell. It just happened. I’m sorry, too. It just happened. It’s okay.” I can’t
help wishing she’d stop and listen, come back, talk to me. I don’t want her to leave.
“It’s not okay!” She’s yelling. “How can I kiss you when he’s dead? When the
man I love is gone? How can I kiss you when…when I—when Kyle—”
“It’s not your fault. I let it happen, too. It’s not your fault. It just happened.”
“Stop saying that!” She screams the words, hysterical. “You don’t know! You
weren’t there! He’s dead and I—” She cuts herself off before she says what we both
know she’s thinking, what she almost said.
“We’re not talking about the kiss anymore, are we?”
She’s shaking her head. “I can’t—I can’t—I can’t…”
And then she’s gone, really gone. I let her go, watching her.
And I know, deep inside, that the kiss, that kiss…it’s going to be a part of me,
now. It’s seared into me. There was so, so much promise in that kiss, that stolen kiss.
I’m shaking, dizzy from more than the alcohol.

I can only hope we’ll never see each other again, because I highly doubt I’d be
able to resist her.


Click to see our 5 star review 



14 comments:

  1. Thank you for this bonus scene

    ReplyDelete
  2. I finished the book a couple days ago and I loved it! So heartbreaking and beautiful. Thanks for sharing this scene, totally love it!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow I haven't started it yet but now I'm thinking of ending the book I am reading to get to this one!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Loved this bonus scene! <3 Thank you

    ReplyDelete
  5. Wow, I think I just shed tears again. Loved Colton's POV in this scene, you always want to know what is going through the guys head in moments like this.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Oh wow!!! Absolutely love it!!! I love Colton and Nell! Love that we got to read his POV!!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I'm such a Colton fan. That was beautiful. Thank you

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thank you for sharing! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  9. I just finished Falling Into You. Thank you for the bonus scene! I love getting Colton's POV.

    ReplyDelete

How to Configure Numbered Page Navigation After installing, you might want to change these default settings: