Authors: Sherry Ewing
The Knights of Berwyck
A Quest Through Time
Books One & Two
San Francisco, California
© 2016 by Sherry Ewing.
ll rights reserved
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San Francisco, CA 94147
Publisher’s Note: This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents
are a product of the author’s imagination. Locales and public names are sometimes used for atmospheric purposes. Any resemblance to actual people, living or dead, or to businesses, companies, events, institutions, or locales is completely coincidental.
Ordering Information: Quantity sales. Special discounts are available on quantity purchases by corporations, associations, and others. For details, contact the “Special Sales Department” at the address above.
Hearts Across Time/Sherry Ewing. -- 1st ed.
eBook ISBN: 978-0-9971777-3-2
Library of Congress Control Number: 2016905223
or my brother
here are not
enough words to describe how much I admire and love you. You are everything of what I would consider a knight in shining armor in these modern times. It seemed only right that I dedicate this special edition of my two favorite stories to you. May we all find someone just like you to fill our lives
with an unconditional love much like you have
found with your lovely wife Barbara.
I love you, Tim!
This special edition novel would not be what it is without the input of these wonderful writers. My heartfelt thanks goes to
Evangeline, Jessica, and Mimi.
Thank you for breathing life into Juliana, Emily, and Brianna and their medieval soul mates. I couldn’t have gone traveling through time without you.
And to Tricia Linden ~
She is my incredible critique partner who continues to amaze me with her positive attitude towards life. You inspire me to write each and every day.
Thank you for all you do.
I love you all, my dearest sisters of my heart! Sometimes family is more
than just being blood related…
, there were
four young women who were such good friends, they considered themselves to be genuine sisters of the heart. Together they dreamed that each would find true love and her very own knight in shining armor.
But, as women of the twenty-first century, they found themselves hard pressed to find gentlemen who had the knightly virtues dreams are made of ─ genuine men who knew the real meaning of chivalry and protecting one’s lady from all manner of harm.
For many years, they had unrelentingly searched for true chivalrous men. Now their resolve had begun to waver, and all were on the verge of giving up hope of ever finding such men worthy of their love until…well...
This is their story…
San Francisco, California
Present Day, Spring
atherine Wakefield looked
up from her laptop, noticed the time, and quickly saved her work. Running toward the bathroom, she looked in the mirror and saw her disheveled appearance. Taking off her computer eyeglasses, she grabbed a towel to rub the smudges from the lenses, and then hooked the glasses in the neckline of her shirt. She looked tired, with dark circles under her bluish-green eyes...not that anyone would care or bother to notice. These days, more often than not, she just felt plain invisible.
Knowing she was running late, she grabbed her brush and a tiny barrette to clasp her blondish-brown hair in a small ponytail atop her head. Forgoing makeup, she went to her bedroom and searched for her purse, which had somehow found its way beneath her bed.
She was half way through the living room before realizing she was still wearing her slippers. With an exasperated sigh, she went back to her bedroom, found her sneakers, and then rushed to her desk to search for her keys. With a quick glance at her small apartment, it was clear she would need to do something soon about all the research scattered from one end to the other. She continually put off the inevitable job of cleaning by justifying to herself that it was organized chaos. At the very least, she could say the kitchen was clean.
Placing a pen behind her ear, she picked up the small spiral notebook she always carried with her then locked her apartment door. She hated when she forgot it, which wasn’t often. Those rare times when she did was usually when she inevitably came up with some brilliant idea for a plot twist in her latest work-in-progress. Her friends tried to remind her that her smartphone could perform the same function, but she was a bit old fashioned.
Nothing like a good pad of paper and a pen
, Katherine thought, as she hurried down the block.
For some things, technology is highly overrated. Give me a good book with pages to turn. Surely, that’s better than anything electronic.
She quickened her pace and was thankful the coffee shop, where she was to meet her girlfriends, was at least downhill. Though her return would not be as fast moving since she knew she would huff and puff her way back up the mountainside. She loved living in the San Francisco area, but really...who thought of the ridiculous notion of building a city into and on top of a mountain?
The coffee shop loomed up ahead on the corner, and Katherine waited for the light to turn red before crossing the busy street. She had almost reached her destination when she was shoved, causing the contents of her purse to go spilling onto the sidewalk as she tried to catch herself from falling. Without even the slightest show of an apology, the
, and she thought that word loosely, went inside the café.
she thought, as she stooped to gather her meager possessions. Then, quickly composing herself, she entered the busy establishment.
She let her eyes adjust to the dimly lit room after being out in the bright sunshine, while she breathed deeply the heavenly aroma of fresh brewed coffee that filled the air. Seeing the line was to the door with almost every table filled to capacity, she sighed. Such was usually the case on a Saturday morning. Conversations in multiple languages hummed in the room, filling her senses while she looked for her friends.
“Katie!” She heard her name called and saw the three women she had searched for seated in a corner booth. Brianna waved a coffee cup in her hand and beckoned Katherine with a welcoming smile. At least her friends were thoughtful enough to have already ordered for her.
She began to weave her way through the crowd and sat down with a huff, pulling out her notebook and searching her purse for her pen.
“Umm, Katie…” Juliana said, trying to get her attention.
Katherine looked up and observed her friend pointing to her ear. She felt behind her own until her hand came in contact with her errant pen, which had all but been forgotten in her haste to see her friends.
“Sorry,” Katherine said sheepishly, “it’s been one of those mornings.”
“You’ve been writing,” Juliana and Brianna replied at the same time, and both broke out into girlish giggles.
“Drink your coffee and chillax for a while, sis,” Emily chimed in, without looking up from her laptop while the keys clicked and clacked as she typed. She, too, was apparently on a writing roll.
Katherine sat back, took a sip of her drink, and almost moaned in pleasure as the hot coffee slipped down her throat to warm her. It was the small things in life that made life worth living, even if it was only her daily caffeine fix to make her smile. Her friends all went back to their respective writing projects. This was their normal weekend routine, when they got together each Saturday to write before they gave way to sharing what their week had brought them. Katherine took this time to contemplate each of her dearest friends, while she drank her coffee.
They called themselves members of the Hopeless Romantic’s Unite ~
...Latin for seize the day. Katherine couldn’t remember the last time she had seized the day, let alone anything else for that matter. Still, she was thankful for the friendship she had found with the three women who sat opposite her at the table. They were as dear to her as any sister could ever be.
Juliana was the oldest of their group, at twenty-six, although Katherine herself was only a few days shy of her. Tall, with a dark complexion, her long wavy black hair hung down past her waist and was the envy of many. Juliana, or Jewels to her friends, had eyes the color of light green that, to Katherine’s thinking, were her biggest asset. She was strikingly beautiful, in a classical sense of the word, and tended to be the mother of their little group, always ensuring everyone was well taken care of. Jewels was their rock foundation.
Brianna, or Brie, was the prankster of the bunch and had a vitality for life that was sometimes hard to keep up with, but such is the case of the young at heart. She was olive skinned with short, dark black hair, brown eyes, and had recently taken up self-defense classes. It was hard to imagine teeny, tiny, little Brianna in such a class. Then again, she was a smidgen rebellious at times, so maybe it shouldn’t have come as any surprise. Not only could this amazing, twenty-three year old woman write, she also created her own compositions and played guitar. With her gift of language, Katherine considered Brianna the Queen of Rhyme.
Last, but certainly not least, was Emily, who just turned twenty-three, as well. She was tall, with wavy, long, sandy colored hair and green eyes the color of the tropical sea. Emily always complained she would never find a man who was taller than her, and she was tired of trying. She hated her height. Though, in Katherine’s opinion, Emily was elegantly statuesque. She had at one point in her life wanted to pursue a career in acting, but the call to write took precedence. She was currently working on four books, all at the same time. It was a shame, though, that she would not at least give more effort to performing on the stage. Granted, acting was a rough field to excel in. But what really was sad, was that Emily could sing like no other vocalist Katherine had ever heard. Emily could make the angels above weep from the purity of her voice, and her friends had counted themselves blessed on numerous occasions to hear her songs lifted to the heavens, even if it was only while driving in the car.
The four had become true sisters in every sense of the word and, at one time or another, had wept alongside whichever friend currently had her heart broken. Oh, they had their arguments, like any siblings who had been raised together would have shared, but for the most part, they all had a common bond...to find true love and, with its finding, know such a thing could really exist. At this point in their lives, they all doubted that it did.
“We’re a fine group,” Katherine sulked. “What we need is a bit of an adventure.”
The women looked up and began saving their work or, in Katherine’s case, setting aside pen and paper.
“Be careful what you wish for,” Juliana cautioned, the voice of reason in their group. “You never know what karma will throw your way.”
“I hate the bar scene,” Emily said with conviction. “I won’t go looking to pick up some random guy that way.”
They all nodded their heads in agreement.
Brianna couldn’t wait to chime in. “I heard, if you’re looking to meet men, you should go where they hang out.”
“Well, we can spend all our hard earned money from working our modest jobs and go to all the baseball and football games we like, but in the end, we’d still be without dates,” Juliana replied quickly.
“Been there, done that,” Katherine retorted with a shrug. “Besides, we’ve been saving up all our money to go on a vacation somewhere together. Maybe we should decide on where we’d like to travel?”
“The tropics,” Juliana offered hopefully. “We should go to Hawaii.”
“Too humid, and most of you have already been there before,” Emily said. “Besides, I’d burn to a crisp in all that sun.”
“Well, I’m not going any place where it rains twenty-four-seven just to make you happy, Emily,” retorted Brianna, crossing her arms in an obvious display of feeling put out. Everyone knew that Emily just loved the rain, but it was hardly what the rest of them would want on a daily occurrence for their dream vacations.
Katherine closed her eyes. A vision of a castle came to her mind. “England,” she whispered breathlessly.
Juliana gave a merry laugh. “I suppose, if we’re to ever get any rest from your endless desire to set foot on the battlements of a castle wall, we should at the very least consider a trip over the pond.”
“You all must think I’m just acting like some naïve school kid,” Katherine declared sadly. “Forget it. We can find another place everyone would be happy with.”
“I never said I wouldn’t be happy going to England,” Juliana replied and patted Katherine’s hand in comfort.
“Katie’s idea does have some appeal,” Emily said and looked to Brianna, whose eyes had begun to twinkle in happiness. “We could travel up to Scotland, too, or maybe over to Ireland. I always wanted to see where my great-grandparents came from.”
Katherine watched in delight as the conversation took flight and ideas of where to travel once they were abroad went round and round with her friends. She fingered her notebook and thought of the handsome knight she had written about in her latest manuscript. He was the stuff dreams were made of and occupied her mind, day and night. The funny thing about this particular character was she had been dreaming of him for as long as she could remember. She didn’t want her friends to think she was crazy, however, so she’d never said anything about her dreams. Instead, she wrote about him and he lived on paper as a figment of her imagination.
“Don’t be too disappointed if you don’t find him in England, Katie,” murmured Juliana.
“Who’s that?” Katherine asked softly.
“Your knight in shining armor, that’s who, my friend.”
The conversation came to a screeching halt as one woman looked to the other. It was a topic they all had on their minds of late.
“You’d think they’d know where to find us,” Brianna said, looking around the coffee shop. From the grimace plastered on her face, she obviously didn’t see any men worthy of consideration.
“All mine have been left out in the rain too long and, I’m afraid, have rusted solid,” Juliana added. “Maybe if we head to England, we can find a castle pit and throw all the men who ever broke our hearts into it together.”
“I can cast a spell on them while they’re down there awaiting their impending doom,” Brianna chimed in happily.
Emily laughed. “That won’t work. Between the four of us, there’ll be so many of them, they’ll just climb, one on top of the other, to their freedom.”
They all seemed to get the same vision in their heads, of their ex-boyfriends trying to scramble to reach the top of some slimy pit without success, and burst out laughing. When their amusement subsided, Katherine’s mind wandered, not even seeing the crowded coffee shop anymore.
“Maybe we shouldn’t be so picky,” Katherine said quietly.
“Well, I, for one, won’t settle for anything less than what I want out of a relationship,” Emily replied, then took a sip of her hot chocolate. “If he’s not up to my standards, he’s history!”
Katherine nodded her head in agreement but continued staring out into space at nothing in particular.
“It’s Bamburgh again, isn’t it?” Juliana guessed.
Katherine looked up at her friend and gave her a small smile. “You know me only too well, Jewels,” she proclaimed. “I just can’t seem to help myself from thinking of the place, no matter where I might be.”
“What’s so special about Bamburgh, more than any other castle you’ve dreamed about over the years?” asked Emily curiously.
Katherine gazed sheepishly around the table at her friends and gave them a slow smile. She had only told Juliana of what had happened to her one day while she was surfing the internet.
“I was typing away on my story when my fingers stiffened above the keys. A writer’s worst nightmare hit me as though I was being slammed up against the wall. Writers block. Nothing would come to me, no matter how hard I tried to concentrate. Having figured there was no sense trying to force my character to talk to me, I had spent some time looking at images of various castles on the internet, trying to get inspired to write again. And then…there it was…a link for a virtual tour of Bamburgh Castle. I had felt drawn to the place, sensing the many souls who had walked the castle passageways over the centuries, and as if one of those souls was calling out to me.”
She glanced at her friends to determine if they thought she was crazy. Seeing the look of interest on their faces, she continued. “I was scrolling with the mouse on the site’s virtual tour page, moving the mouse in such a way I had felt as though I had been actually walking across a battlement wall. A strange sensation came over me. My hand froze, refusing to move, and goose bumps raised up on my arms, as if my fate had walked across my soul. It was as though a scene from another time was playing before my very eyes. I actually felt as if I was standing on the castle wall itself, feeling the wind upon my face. I could taste the saltiness of the ocean mist on my lips and could see several knights standing vigilantly at their posts.”