Second Chances in Love – My Work In Progress, A Sneak Peak

Do you like reading Second Chances in Love. If yes, my next book is for you.

I have just written the first chapter, and sharing it with you. However, it’s not a complete chapter, but a tiny excerpt.

Hope you like it. The book is yet not titled, so I’m not writing the title here.

Untitled (Work In Progress)

Self-pride washed over me as I stood in front of the Shanbagh Palace. The magnificent building boasted months of hard work and labor me and my team put in renovating the old monument, and now it was ready to host its first wedding.

I bought Shanbagh two months after returning to my hometown of Awadh from Mumbai where I studied and worked in an IT Firm. Scars of failed relationship would have broken me apart had I not known of my pregnancy.

“Momma, we’re getting late for school.” Pari’s thin voice pulled me out of my thoughts.

“Yeah, I’m coming dear.” I wiped my eyes and descended the porch stairs to reach my baby doll.

Dropping my daughter school and then coming back to Shanbagh to carry out renovation activities had been my routine for the past one year. No ifs and buts. But, that day was different because Shanbagh was going to host its first wedding after facing decades of neglect and abandonment.

If everything goes by the plan, the old harbor will regain its glory while we can have a dependable source of income.

I didn’t buy Shanbagh just to convert it into a wedding house but because of the connection, I felt with the old harbor. The strength and positivity the massive building reflected had carved an everlasting impression. I used to visit the ancient house of the Nawabs of Awadh during my childhood and teen years. One of my aunts married a Nawab, and they used to live there. They had a large family of brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, nieces, and nephews.

My summers were always full of activities, playing in the green lush lawns of the palace with kids of my age, sons and daughters of my aunt’s extended family.

Years passed. The old ones died. The young ones migrated to big cities. And, the building grew old with no one to take care of the ancient memories. Memories that filled the rustic air of the Shanbagh Palace.

I walked out of my office to reach the green lawns of the building where folks were busy decorating the altar. Several white-clothed golden ribbon chairs graced the front garden, morning sun beaming over the dewy petals of bushes and shrub.

Second Chances in Love: A Sneak Peak of My Work In Progress, www.mariyamhasnain.comEverything’s so green and fresh.

Hey, what’s this? I felt the feathery sensation on my open toe ballerinas only to find a white furry cat purring next to me on the ground.

“Oh! Baby.” I picked up the cute cat and caressed her in my arms.

“Maggie.” A thick voice echoed in the fragrant morning air, and the cat jumped out of my lap and ran down the walkway.

“Hey stop! Stop there! It’s not safe.” The poor cat was going to touch the electric circuit when I grabbed her but lost my balance in saving the cat’s life. A generous splatter of water, and the next moment I was in the water pond.

“Can I help you.” A deep voice again hit my senses bringing me back to present. A strong hand stretched for me. I looked up. The owner of the hand had the same set of light brown eyes.

“How are you?” He asked as he pulled me out of the water.

“How come you are here?” My voice shook. I avoided his stare on my wet clothes clinging to the curves of my body.

“I should be asking this, shouldn’t I?” The teasing sound of his snickers brought a surge of heat. It was like my cold body had been put on fire. I hated his voice, his eyes, his smile because it reminds me of someone who broke my heart who cheated on me.

“What do you want now?”

“Well, It seems I was misinformed about the palace being renovated into a wedding house. I think I should’ve done my homework before dropping in. Anyways, gotta go now.”

“You aren’t misinformed, Mister. Shanbagh Palace is accepting clients for weddings and other family get-togethers.”

“Is it? Can I meet someone who can provide me with the details.”

“Yeah, of course, please go straight and take left. There’s a front office. You can get the details from there.”

“Thanks, Pink.” As he called me Pink, I couldn’t stop myself looking into his eyes. My heart galloped, it pounded against my chest. It felt as if someone had dug out a deep buried desire within me.

“I need to look out for my cat first. Thanks for saving her.”

“It’s okay.” My voice wobbled in my throat as I collected myself together and turned my back to him.

****End of the Excerpt

Do you think it’s hooking. Do you think you can take a chance on reading further? If yes, I would love your words of appreciations. If not, please tell me where I can improve. I’m open to changes to make the beginning more enticing to my readers.

Please leave your reply in the comment section below.

~MH

Romantic Short Stories: Love Me Baby

Hey folks! It’s Monday and guess what. Today, I’m not posting a flash but an excerpt from my sweet romantic novelette – Love Me Baby. This short story is my favorite of all the romantic short stories or love flashes I’ve written till now.

Hope you like it!

An Excerpt From Love Me Baby

I reached the studio on time. As I noticed the black gleaming sedan standing in the parking alley, my eyes gleamed with joy.

“Oh… So he’s early today,” I murmured, and a tingle of blush washed over my cheeks. I located an empty spot and squeezed my Nissan in between two giant SUVs. Stepping out of the car, I made my way to the exit. My heart thumped harder against my chest. It raced at the greatest speed.

What’s this happening? Guys tried hard to seduce me but I flipped them off. I broke up several times, but I never cried on my failed relationships. Why I’m so nervy and euphoric? I quizzed myself.

Lost in my thoughts, I didn’t realize when I reached the main entrance of the Alan’s Photography studio. I raised my head and glanced at his name.

“Alan,” I whispered his name under my breath, and his vibrantly stunning image flashed in front of my eyes.

It’s just one night, but it seems as if it’s been centuries since I last met him.

My steps took me to Alan’s cabin, and what I saw through the slanting window blinds melted my brain and shook me, soul.

Romantic Short Stories: Love Me Baby, www.mariyamhasnain.comJealousy and disappointment ran through my nerves, and a tinge of melancholy swept over my soul. I turned around and dashed out through the main exit, gasping for breath. I fell apart seeing Pixie in Alan’s arms. I left the studio and drove myself off from North Hollywood to reach my home in Downtown LA.

I pulled up in the parking zone of my commune and rushed to my flat on the fourth floor wiping at my eyes. I opened the door with my keys and straightaway headed to the sleeping room. Dropping myself on the bed, I buried my face in the pillow. Michelle laid on the adjacent bed, listening to music on her iPod. She instantly got up and wobbled my shoulder.

“Hey. What happened?” she asked.

“He loves that blond. I’m going back to Phoenix, to my mom. I need her.” I raised my head from the pillow and pushed my drooping body to a sitting position.

“How do you know he doesn’t love you? Did he tell you that?” she quizzed me again.

“I saw them hugging,” I replied, tears rolling down my cheeks.

“It could be a friendly embrace… a platonic one as he met her after a long while. She was off to the Bahamas, wasn’t she?” Michele said placing a comforting hand on my shoulder.

“I don’t know. It could be, but I can’t imagine any other woman in his arms. What if he doesn’t love me and loves that blond? I don’t want to bear the pain of unrequited unfulfilled love. I’m going away from him… so I can forget him and move on with my life.” Michelle couldn’t utter a word on my stern determination of leaving LA and going back to Phoenix.

I logged into my laptop and booked the next immediate flight to Phoenix. Packing my stuff into the giant suitcase, I was ready for my journey to my homeland. As I pictured myself hugging my mom and crying out my inner weakness and emotional turmoil on her shoulder, I felt calm and composed. The triumph of seeing my mom after so many months overshadowed the pain of heartbreak. I hugged Michelle and kissed her slippery cheeks before wishing her goodbye and came out of my apartment to hop onto my waiting taxicab.

****End of the Excerpt

Want to read the full story, download Free sample chapters of Love Me Baby

~MH

Romantic Short Stories, Week #6, The Road to Salvation

A big Hi! to all my awesome readers. I hope you had a blast over the weekend, and here comes another Monday. Jump start the week with this beautiful love story of lost mates from my immense pool of romantic short stories.

There’s a subtle touch of paranormal in this love short.

Remember Twilight?

This is the first time I’ve written something that’s beyond this world. I hope you like reading this as much as I liked writing.

Week #6

Title: The Road to Salvation

The forest reeked of wet grass and vegetation. Trees swayed in the gusty wind. Norma ran through the woods. She didn’t understand what made her run. All she could remember that she was asleep in her room. And then all of a sudden, someone carried her on his shoulder and laid her on the wet grass.

When she opened her eyes, she found herself gazing at the moonlit sky. She felt frail, each bone of her body asking refuge, pestering her to lie down. The coldness of the dewy grass made her shiver. The wind blew hard. She felt like as if her body was slowly transforming into rock ice, her feet freezing. She pushed herself to a sitting position. Her eyes darted around, early morning sun rays seeping in through the dense foliage.

She stood up and ran until she noticed a lake. The stream glistened under the golden sun. On the edge, there was a boy, with his back to her, teetering on the rough edge of the river like a pendulum swinging freely from a fixed point.

“Hey! Careful lest you’d fall.” A barely audible whisper escaped Norma’s throat.

The boy turned around. A frail smile swam on his dry lips. As Norma neared him, she noticed the boy’s pale skin sparkle with thousands of stars.

“Aren’t you afraid of falling into the freezing water and dying or that was your idea of having water fun?”

“Living without you is like death.”

“What?”

“You don’t remember anything, do you?”

“Who are you?”

“I’m not apart from you. We’re bound together.”

“Don’t trick me. I know there are bullies, on loose, tricking girls to fall prey, but I’m not going to give you a chance.”

She turned around and what’s that – the boy was standing in front of her. She turned around to face the river and again saw the same form.

She couldn’t work out whether it was a mere delusion or reality.

Vague images floated around her head. Voices, she often heard in her dreams, echoed in her ears. Her head ached with the most traumatic kind of pain. She felt herself transitioning back into the past.

Romantic Short Stories, Week #6, The Road to Salvation, www.mariyamhasnain.com“No matter how many bodies your soul inhabits, it will yearn for its mate. You’ll keep on reincarnating until you’re united with me. The path to salvation goes through several cycles of birth and rebirth until the soul achieves its pure self. You’ll never be free from the sufferings neither do I until our souls achieve their goals.”

Norma’s headache subsided. Faint memories flooded her mind, memories of her previous life.

“I can’t bear this pain anymore.” Her eyes glistened as she recalled the traumatic end of their relationship. They had to pay the price of being in love within the same clan. A sin, regarded as incest by the community.

The lightning struck the couple as they united. The whirlwind carried the twin souls to their ultimate abode, leading to the state of being free.

*****End*****

Did you like what your read? If you did, don’t forget to share.

Want to download some free romantic short stories – Click Here.

~MH

Book Review – Finished by Anne Holster

I love reading romance novels and this book is yet another addition in the list of my all time favorite romance books. Finished kept me hooked till its end. Young couples, beaches, parties, and just sheer fun, a colorful book that deals with the feelings of millennial generation to which Jess, Jill, and many of other young characters of the story belong to. The book does have a bit of thrill that kept me intrigued and its romance element kept me entertained. I really liked the writing style of the author and the flow of the book from one chapter to another.

The characters are pretty entertaining and at the same time each one has its own set of problems to deal with. The book beautifully captures the emotions and feelings of each of its characters. I really like the female protagonist and her best friend Jill. The conversation between the two was quite interesting and often left me laughing silently as I flip through the pages.

Finn, the male protagonist however at times gave me a bad taste but as the novel progresses his transformation from a reckless and spoiled youngster to a caring lover exploring and understanding the universal emotion of love was something that made his character appealing and vividly clear in my mind. The only thing that bothered me was the title of the book – Finished. Though derived from the name of male protagonist, Finished sounds something like a book dealing with action, gore, or destruction rather than a fun-filled colorful romantic story that has a sweet and happy ending. All in all, Finished is a cozy fun read for a lazy weekend.

I would give Finished a 4 out of 5 stars.

Click here for a closer look of Finished