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One Summer at Deer’s Leap

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Язык: Английский
Год издания: 2018 год
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      One Summer at Deer’s Leap
Elizabeth Elgin

A present-day love story which springs from a tragic wartime romance …It is the 1990s. Cassie Johns is a young, lovely writer on the threshold of success after a less-than-silver-spooned girlhood. Driving through the glorious countryside to a fancy-dress party in the Vale of Boland, she gives a lift to a mysteriously attractive young man wearing the uniform of an RAF pilot: ready for the party Cassie assumes. But in the evening there is no sign of the airman.Cassie – hitherto rational, sceptical, a woman of her times – becomes obsessed by Jack Hunter, a pilot whose plane crashed in 1944, but whose long-ago love for a girl at Deer’s Leap makes him unable to rest in peace. Cassie’s love for the dead hero takes her into an unknown war-torn past, where old passion burns and becomes entwined with new.

ELIZABETH ELGIN

One Summer at Deer’s Leap

Dedication (#ulink_f9dd8dff-ad89-50c5-86a7-afcfa7bf74c5)

Gratefully to Patricia Parkin, Caroline Sheldon and Nancy Webber

Contents

Cover (#u98d87ed2-b231-5e35-b6d7-b5cf4c679b19)

Title Page (#u331a7ed8-9c18-5611-ad3b-b2d071bb24db)

Dedication (#ulink_bf512837-6259-5e3c-acbe-14d78d3f6642)

Part One (#u339b5ccc-224e-5639-a31a-34a33291559b)

Chapter One (#ue41241ed-49b7-540a-9566-3e0a2001ef89)

Chapter Two (#uc0762b62-e0fc-5a62-b70e-0196f4fc9f7b)

Chapter Three (#u007b7228-836a-5a8a-9544-223aaaf4cb94)

Chapter Four (#uc840f3b1-3eb4-537e-9f9d-5fa2846f577b)

Chapter Five (#u8a4b2c6d-93f6-502c-a229-7449e1999d0d)

Chapter Six (#ucc53f1c1-a657-56dc-9c45-6b3128c991aa)

Chapter Seven (#ua71c7973-8f8a-52d3-a54b-049fc20560d2)

Chapter Eight (#ue7f6e18a-0f6f-54f6-9151-44979c95f304)

Chapter Nine (#ue2c736c8-f597-5fc4-81a9-a65894de2439)

Chapter Ten (#litres_trial_promo)

Dragonfly Morning (#litres_trial_promo)

Dedication (#litres_trial_promo)

One (#litres_trial_promo)

Two (#litres_trial_promo)

Three (#litres_trial_promo)

Four (#litres_trial_promo)

Five (#litres_trial_promo)

Six (#litres_trial_promo)

Seven (#litres_trial_promo)

Eight (#litres_trial_promo)

Nine (#litres_trial_promo)

Ten (#litres_trial_promo)

Eleven (#litres_trial_promo)

Twelve (#litres_trial_promo)

Thirteen (#litres_trial_promo)

Fourteen (#litres_trial_promo)

Fifteen (#litres_trial_promo)

Sixteen (#litres_trial_promo)

Seventeen (#litres_trial_promo)

One Summer At Deer’s Leap Part Two (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter Eleven (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter Twelve (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter Thirteen (#litres_trial_promo)

About the Author (#litres_trial_promo)

By the Same Author (#litres_trial_promo)

Copyright (#litres_trial_promo)

About the Publisher (#litres_trial_promo)

Part One (#ulink_be4a13c0-278d-5509-9f6a-1e92849c5964)

Chapter One (#ulink_a5710a01-effc-5495-a839-a685526b7bcd)

I suppose it was to be expected that someone with a name like mine should one day do something a bit out of the ordinary, like deciding to be a novelist.

I do things by numbers. I’d finished my fifth novel – the other four had been rejected out of hand – and sending it out one last, despairing time was as far as I was prepared to go. One more rejection, and that was the end of Cassie Johns, novelist!

‘You’ll turn her head with a fancy name like that,’ Dad had said when I was born because he wanted me called after his sister Jane, and Mum, who had been wavering and half prepared to agree with him, dug her heels in with uncharacteristic ferocity. And Aunt Jane, bless her, sided with Mum and said that Cassandra would do very nicely, to her way of thinking!

Dear, lovely Aunt Jane was the reason I was here now, a novelist at last, driving my own car and smiling foolishly at a passing clump of silver birches and the foxgloves that grew beneath them, and so stupidly smug and self-satisfied I didn’t notice the revs had dropped to a warning judder and I was being overtaken by a farm tractor.

‘Don’t give in, Cassie,’ Aunt Jane had urged. ‘Just one more try to please your old auntie?’

So instead of giving in and doing the rounds of the universities as Dad had always supposed I would when I got three decent A levels, I wrote Till Hell Freezes Over with a kind of despairing acceptance that my father had been right all along. After working for four years – and four useless novels – on the marketing side of Dad’s horticultural business (selling vegetables and flowers at the top of the lane in summer and working in the propagating houses in winter) I posted off the novel for the fifth time, then settled down to accept defeat. And university, if I was lucky.

My last-stand novel was unbelievably, wonderfully, gloriously accepted. One or two changes were needed, said the publishing lady to whom I spoke an hour after receiving the letter. A little editing – perhaps a different title? Could I go to London and talk to her? Would tomorrow be convenient? I’d asked breathlessly.

It was to be two weeks later that I eventually met my editor, because after a do in the local and everybody in the village having a knees-up to celebrate the emergence of an author in their midst, Aunt Jane died in her sleep that same night.

The milkman became concerned because she didn’t answer to his knock, and came at once to tell us. We found her curled up under her patchwork quilt with such a look of contentment on her face that we knew her going had been gentle.

Had she been thinking of the three sherries of the night before, or her niece’s success? Whatever the reason for that smile, we could only be sorry for ourselves because there hadn’t been a last goodbye. For Jane Johns there was only relief that she had gone the way most people would like: peacefully, in her sleep.
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