TITLE: The Invitation
GENRE: Historical Romance
Carrie did not get cold feet that night; her feet had felt like wooden blocks throughout the entire day. Now, as she lowered the knotted sheets over the windowsill, she prayed those same wooden blocks could be depended on to get her safely to the ground. And then the twelve mile walk to...but there was no sense in thinking about that just yet. She had to get down first.
She looked over the edge of the sill. Far below, her mother's carefully tended rose bushes stood like sentinels in the moonlight. From the bed behind her, Carrie could hear her younger sister's even breathing, and for a moment she wished for nothing else but for Ellen to stir. Wake up, Ellen! Ask me what on earth I'm doing! For God's sake, stop me!
But there was no other sound save the crickets chirping loudly in the crisp nighttime air. Carrie shoved one leg over the window ledge and then the other, and then turned over on her stomach. She took one last look at the room and its sweetly sleeping occupant. Oh, Ellen! I'm sorry I won't be here to go berry picking with you tomorrow, like I promised.
Her bare toes found the first knot, and Carrie forced her hands to grasp the makeshift ladder. For a terrifying moment she flailed, the sheets twisting, and then she slithered down another length, and another, until she found herself dangling close enough to clutch