Publication date: May 21st 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
From the author of My Sister and I and The Old Man and The Princess (recently optioned to be a motion picture) – comes a new, suspenseful romantic tale that will knock you off your feet. A story that has a reminiscence of ‘500 days of Summer’ and ‘Midnight in Paris’ with a fair dollop of ‘The Graduate’ thrown in. And of course Audrey, a delightful, older female protagonist who takes the young and wayward ex-con Joe under her wing.
Just out of prison Joe, a young builder from Edinburgh who writes movie scripts in his spare time, randomly meets Audrey, a washed-up, hard-drinking, chain-smoking, middle-aged French film actress at his local film festival. After hitting it off and spending one crazy, magical night together, Audrey sees some potential in Joe and his writing and tries to help him win back his estranged daughter by getting his first screenplay made into a movie in Paris. And so, the adventure of a lifetime begins…
Julie froze on the footpath only a few dozen yards ahead of him, although she did not turn around right away to face the familiar voice.
“Julie, please!” Joe cried, continuing to approach her but slowing down his pace just enough to appear as non-threatening as he possibly could. Surprisingly it was Sarah who turned around to face him first.
“Who is it, mummy?” were the first words out of her mouth. “Who is that man?”
Julie took a deep breath and finally turned her stiff body fully around to confront the man that she truly hoped she would never have to see again. There was a long, deep silence as the two just stared at each other for what felt like aeons. Joe looked deeply remorseful stuck inside his own emotional turmoil.
“I heard you were getting out.” Julie finally spoke up.
“I just wanted to say hello.”
“You shouldn’t be here, Joe. You’re not allowed to be here. There are rules and regulations that you need to follow.”
“I know, I know, but I just wanted to see my…”
Joe glanced down at Sarah. He tried to smile, even with tears in his eyes. Sarah hugged a little closer into her mother, unsure of the strange man standing on the street in front of them.
“Don’t you dare say what you’re about to bloody well say, Joe? Don’t you bloody well dare!”
Julie turned to face Sarah again. She crouched down fast so they were both at the same height.
“Who is that man, mummy?” Sarah asked again.
“Just an old, old friend of your mum’s, that’s all. Nothing to worry about. But can you do me a wee favour, my angel?”
Sarah nodded gently.
“See that lamppost behind you, my wee darling? Can you go and wait for mummy over there, please? I won’t be long.”
Sarah simply nodded again and did what she was told. She took one last short curious glance at Joe before walking away. Julie then turned her focus back on Joe. With an angry glare and a determined steely walk, she made her way towards him with a face of thunder.
“Look. I knew this day was coming and I have been… mentally preparing for it to say the least…”
Julie hesitated. She closed her eyes and pressed her fingertips into her forehead, debating what to say next. Desperately trying to choose her words carefully in her emotional state of mind.
“Look. She doesn’t know who you are, okay? She doesn’t remember you. And I still haven’t gotten around to telling her about…” Julie hesitated again. Clearly choking up with the painful memories of it all. “…About what you fucking did.” She finally got her words out.
“It’s okay. I completely understand.” Joe swiftly replied, keen to comfort her. But Julie looked furious as hell at Joe’s casual answer. “No, Joe. No, you don’t understand. How could you ever understand?” Julie took a few moments to calm herself down.
“Look, if you want to see Sarah again then I guess I can’t stop you from trying. But you will have to go through all the proper channels to make it happen. I will not make this easy for you Joe, okay? So, this is your first and only warning. If you surprise us like this again in the middle of the bloody street, or if I see you anywhere near us without a social worker or a bloody lawyer then I will call the police and have you sent back to prison without even batting an eyelash. Do you understand?”
“Yes.” Joe replied as sincerely as he possibly could. “I understand.”
Julie turned around to leave, but Joe still had more to say.
“Do you think we could talk sometime, Julie? Please?”
Julie stopped dead in her tracks and whipped around to face him again. She looked utterly flabbergasted that he was still talking.
“I mean, just the two of us.”
“Didn’t you just listen to a bloody word I said?”
Joe suddenly began digging around in his pockets. By the desperate expression on his face, it was as if the thing he was searching for held the key to getting back on Julie’s good side again. Finally, he pulled out a pair of cinema tickets which only baffled her more.
“Look. I know it might sound stupid and dumb as hell, but I bought us some tickets for a movie at the film festival next week… I thought we could perhaps grab a bite to eat, talk, watch a movie. Like we used to do?”
Julie looked utterly confounded, but she restrained herself from raising her voice into an angry screech in the middle of the quiet neighbourhood where she could already feel the presence of hidden eyes from behind the twitching blinds and curtains of the surrounding houses.
“You want to go and watch a fucking movie? After all this time? After what you did?”
“I know it sounds dumb. I just don’t know what to do or where else to start here, Julie, please?”
“You could start by moving to the other side of the fucking planet and staying far, far away from us.”
Sean is an author from Edinburgh in Scotland. He is the best selling Kindle Author of 'The Old Man and The Princess' which was recently optioned to be a major motion picture.
Sean spent most of his childhood and teenage years on the move with his Scottish and Irish army Parents growing up in the likes of Cyprus, Germany, Wales, and England, as an army brat.
With a keen interest in both reading and writing, he was diagnosed with travel and writing bugs very early in life. Now, writing, travelling, reading, cinema, and Scottish football (Supporting the mighty Edinburgh City for his sins) are his main passions in life.
His main inspiration for writing today comes from living in such a beautiful, charming and hauntingly, Gothic city, such as Edinburgh. An awe-inspiring wee city that has given him so much amazing inspiration to write the more time he spends there.
Recently, Sean has been working on a couple of screenplay adaptations of his books. One of which 'The Old Man and The Princess' made the final of the Nashville Film Festival Screenwriting Competition 2018 and has since been optioned by an award-winning Director /Producer team. Scheduled to go into production in Ireland in the summer of 2021 filming has been postponed until 2022 due to the recent covid pandemic.
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