“You are dealing with terrorists!” Natahimik si Ephraim nang malaman ang dahilan kung bakit bihag niya ito ngayon.
“Mariam, you know me better than this. Wala akong alam sa sinasabi mo,” anito mayamaya.
“Kailangan mong maintindihan, Ephraim.” Tumitig siya sa mga mata nito. “My job is to eradicate enemy forces that threaten my homeland at all costs. Pangalawa, hindi ko sigurado kung kilala talaga kita. Hindi ko alam kung ano ka sa labas ng panahong nakasama kita sa Israel. Madaling magpanggap.”
Kitang-kita niya ang pagguhit ng sakit at pait sa mga mata ng binata. “Tama ka nga. Hindi tayo magkakilala.”
His voice sounded resigned, and a huge part of her heart ached and bled for the only man she ever loved….
Notes and Trivia:
* Read the excerpt here.
* Read about how I came up with the story of Epi and Mariam here.
* This book is among the first batch of titles for MSV’s newest series-imprints, Romancing The Globe. 🙂
* Did you know that the year I finished and submitted this story (2012), I felt utterly compelled to join the Holy Land Pilgrimage which my Kuya Father Rick organizes every year? Well, I did go. Coaxed my parents into financing my trip as an advanced 40th birthday gift (which I celebrated months after the pilgrimage tour). While at the tour, I was given several signs that I was, indeed, supposed to be there. Here are the reasons why:
1. Lavender. The plant overran the place, like we would find santan or bougainvillea just about anywhere. Mariam’s scent is of warm lavender and honey.
2. At the square behind the palace of Caiaphas, after we visited the dungeons, we had a short sharing session. Kuya Father spoke to us about commitment and all that, quoting lines from the “Song of Ruth.” Look for it in the book. I mentioned the same (assuming it wasn’t edited out. As of this writing, I don’t have my published copy just yet).
* I had a different cover peg for this. Had it in my files for the longest time. I’d submitted that photo to my editor before I saw from one of the many online pocketbook sellers on FB that an old release of PHR had used the same. Still, my ed said we could still use it. Anyway, it had been a long time and our rockin’ genius graphic artist Jill could do magic. However, just a couple of weeks after I was told the story was finally being lined up for release, a fellow author published, on FB, the same cover peg. It didn’t end up being used for her cover, either. They didn’t want to rehash. Nevertheless, since she’d had it published on FB, and a lot of our readers are on FB, I couldn’t very well use it anymore. So I looked for another, and was extremely happy to find this one. John Abraham, you are hotness personified! 🙂
* This story is my homage to Ziva David (Cote de Pablo) of NCIS, former MOSSAD agent and federal officer. You rock, girl! I wish I was like you! 🙂