Title: Rose In The Desert
Author: K.M. Daughters
Genre: Christian Speculative Fiction
Anna Babic Robbins, dubbed "The Rose Of The Adriatic" by pilgrims to her village, leaves her home bound for America. She is to deliver secrets concerning the fate of the world to a Chicago priest who will shepherd mankind to prepare to hear God speak.
Four women travel to Las Vegas, and while there, snow begins to fall during triple digit heat. They soon learn that the non-accumulating snowfall is a worldwide phenomenon—a universal sign from God preceding the gift of a permanent sign inexplicable by earthly standards.
With the culmination of these miraculous events, all their paths intersect, and God will reveal His plans to each soul on earth.
Will mankind listen?
Matt clasped Anna’s hand and led her to the bench. “She’s speaking English today? My poor Anna, you’re outnumbered in this family,” he teased.
“For three days in a row now, she abandons Croatian. My English has improved since I married my American doctor and became a mother.”
Matt brushed the back of Anna’s hand with a soft kiss. “Your English is perfect.”
His penetrating gaze was clinical, characteristic of his acute intelligence, his M.D., and Ph.D. degrees. “Doctor-Doctor” Matt Robbins never missed a thing.
“But you’re not yourself today, love. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that expression on your face. What’s troubling you? Did our little rose really scare you that much?”
“No…yes…” Anna shook her head. “Everything confuses me today. I was frightened and a little amused, too. Seeing her try to go up the wall made me think of your first visit here. Remember how you climbed the garden wall to steal a rose, so you could analyze it and prove that I’m a big liar?”
Matt chuckled. “I do remember every second with you.”
He smiled sheepishly. “I poked and prodded and tested you. You passed the lie detector test with flying colors.”
He gently rotated her hand and kissed the palm. “That means you weren’t a liar, and I was a skeptical scientist. I confessed what I was up to that night before I resorted to thievery. And, eventually…I believed.”
“Yes.” The heaviness around her heart lightened, remembering all that led her to fall in love with the man who made her dreams come true.
“And I married the most extraordinary woman on the planet and have been graced beyond measure. Just look at our little miracle,” he said, grinning from ear to ear.
Ruža sat in the dirt, inspecting a smooth stone. She peered at the rock and spun it around in her hands as if deciphering its composition.
"She is so like you," Anna remarked.
Matt smiled, his eyes twinkling as he gazed at their daughter. "Maybe in some things. But, thank God, she looks just like you. Beautiful. Those soft brown eyes melt me every time. And she has your shiny, honey-blonde hair. We’ll have to beat the boys off with a big stick when she’s grown."
“I don’t understand,” Anna said. “You’d strike her suitors?”
He turned his attention to Anna and gazed deeply into her eyes. "I love you," he said.
Anna's spirits lifted, thrilled at the expression in her husband's sparkling eyes that mirrored their abiding love. "I love you, too."
Giving her hands a squeeze, he asked, "Feel better now?"
More at ease, she replied, "Yes, thank you. I feel foolish."
She knitted her brows and he chuckled.
"Good that you feel better...not that you feel foolish," he clarified.
Stretching out his legs, he relaxed on the bench. “Aren't you going to ask why I'm home in the middle of the day?"
Widening her eyes, she joked, "Because you missed me too terribly to bear it."
He beamed a smile and replied, "There's that. But...Anna you won't believe it. All five terminally ill patients at Mir House were spontaneously cured! It was magnificent. I wish you had been there to see it. Harry and I are left with nothing to do."
An obscure dread colored Anna's elation at the unprecedented, wondrous news. Her thoughts whirled as she considered this event’s possible connection to her lingering apprehension all day.
Matt's voice muted in her consciousness.
"There's a procession up Gospa Hill planned this evening,” he said. “I thought we could hike up Salvation Mountain now for reflection and thanksgiving. Just us three..."
The sweet, beloved voice she knew so well blotted out earthly reality, and Anna shot off the bench.
"What? Anna!" The shock in Matt’s voice penetrated the haze.
Breaking into a run Anna shouted, "Our Lady comes. Matt. Quick. Bring the baby. The chapel..."
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What’s your favorite thing about the Fall season:
Before I (Pat) even asked her, I knew how Kathie would like to answer – football! Not just any team, either. Her “beloved” Green Bay Packers.
What inspired you to write this story:
We visited Medjugorje, a small village in the former Yugoslavia, where millions, including us, believe that the Mother of God has appeared to eight visionaries. Since 1981, she has delivered messages to pray, turn away from sin and draw closer to her beloved son. She has also imparted secrets to the visionaries that include the appearance of a universal sign, reconciliation with God almighty and also the manifestation of a permanent sign afterward that cannot be explained in scientific terms so that the world knows that it could only come from God. The secrets and history of Medjugorje inspired Rose In The Desert and also, our White Rose inspirational novels and novellas. For Rose In The Desert we started imagining what if the universal sign was this and the permanent sign was that? When we had our imagined answers in place, we built a plot around them.
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Runs September 1 – 30.
Drawing will be held on October 1.
K.M. Daughters is the penname for team writers and sisters, Pat Casiello and Kathie Clare. The pen name is dedicated to the memory of their parents, “K”ay and “M”ickey Lynch. K.M. Daughters is the author of 15 award-winning romance genre, women’s fiction and Christian fiction novels. The “Daughters” are wives, mothers and grandmothers residing in the Chicago suburbs and on the Outer Banks, North Carolina. Visitors are most welcome at http://www.kmdaughters.com
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