All Whitney wants from life at eighteen is to belong to a normal family. It's a simple request really. A family where she can feel safe and not have to wonder why her mother is trying to sell her virginity to the highest bidder.
Looking back on her decision to move to Penn State, she realizes what a brilliant idea it was to move 2000 miles away. Brilliant because it would be a new start for her and because her mother was deathly afraid of flying.
Whitney is enjoying her first semester on campus. She has a job at the local deli and is trying to learn how to fit in, despite her southern drawl. Who knew ice tea could be unsweetened? And the weather isn't dripping with humidity- clearly a bonus to picking a university above the Mason/Dixon line.
But one night before Thanksgiving break changes everything.
As her mangled body lies on the cold floor of the frat room, Whitney looks around and wonders why the attack has stopped. Suddenly, she is cradled ever so gently in the arms of an unlikely hero, Wes Deluca. She spends the next few days in the care of Wes and his family. His family has grown to love her and treats her like the daughter they never had.
Wes has a secret that he can't continue to hide. He loves Whitney, unconditionally. Although he can't confess his love now, while she is a breakable bubble, he wants to soon. He decides to wait until winter break to show how much he loves her. He's thought about this night a hundred times, but he's still not certain how Whitney will react.
In the snowy night standing in the middle of a lit gazebo, Whitney Davis finds herself in a place she never thought existed; a place where she is loved, free of conditions.
Thank you for your time and consideration. My novel, Love: Free of Conditions, is 80,000 words and is complete. Please see the first 250 words below:
"Whitney, just two more applications for today and you can return to your writing class." Mrs. Long assured me as she pushed a stack of papers towards me. I looked up at the clock in the office. Two thirty in the afternoon. It was Monday, and as usual, I spent my afternoons in Mrs. Long's office.
I sighed as I looked at the name of the university on the application in front of me.
"Notre Dame, Really Mrs. Long. Don't you think that's a stretch?" I complained and rolled my eyes.
"You're only requirement was that it was far away from Mississippi. Preferably on the east coast and above the Mason Dixon line." She teased.
"Yes, but I don't think they'll give me a full ride, no matter how good my grades are." I retorted.
"We are running out of time, it won't hurt to apply."
I started writing my name on the application, "Fine, but I'm not holding my breath on this one."
I was two months from graduating high school in Clinton, Ms. A town not known for much other than being south of Jackson. I had a good friend in the high school counselor, Mrs. Long. She was much more than a friend, somewhat of a sereget mother, a guardian angel of sorts.
"Alright, we received a partial scholarship from the University of Chicago, but that's not going to work now, is it?" Mrs. Long threw the envelope in the trash.