Fulfilment by Anne Stormont
It is a delight to be involved with the third part of @writeanne Anne Stormont’s Scottish, Skye based trilogy, Fulfilment. The tour is run by Love Book Tours, one of the foremost tour companies in the UK. Find them at @lovebooksgroup #lovebookstours. Enjoy the tour.
The path of true love rarely runs smoothly…
When former Edinburgh police detective Jack Baxter met local author and crofter Rachel Campbell on the Scottish island of Skye, they fell in love. It was a second chance at happiness for both of them.
They both had emotional baggage. Jack helped Rachel cope with unimaginable grief after the death in combat of her soldier son, and Rachel was there for Jack after a criminal with a grudge almost ended his life. There were many bumps along the road but they believed they’d worked through and settled their differences.
However, Jack is struggling. Still suffering from post-traumatic stress, haunted by his past, and taunted by the demons of self-doubt, he feels Rachel deserves better.
Meanwhile, Rachel is busy preparing for the launch of her latest book – a book in honour of her son and aimed at promoting peace. So at first, she fails to notice just how troubled Jack is.
It was almost two o’clock in the afternoon. Jack was now over an hour late and he wasn’t answering his phone. A mixture of fear and dread made my stomach churn as all sorts of what-ifs played out in my imagination.
I’d begun that day in late March feeling excited about seeing him after our two weeks apart while I’d been away in Glasgow. However, my excitement probably blinded me to the reality of how things were between Jack and me and I know I probably should have seen the crisis coming.
I should have acted much sooner than I did to avert it. After all I knew deep down that all was not well with Jack or with our relationship. I shouldn’t have delayed the honest conversation we needed to have. But I’d been so focussed on my work that I chose, at least in the short term, to ignore the signs.
Yes, Jack had engaged with all the treatment he’d been offered, and was still undergoing, since the terrible events of last year, and in some respects he’d made progress – but this was mostly physical. Mentally and emotionally he remained vulnerable.
And, yes, he’d got slightly better at opening up to me about how he was truly feeling, but it still didn’t come easily to him. After all, until relatively recently he’d seen himself as strong, calm and protective – both in his former long career as a police detective and as a man. But now his feeling of invincibility had been taken from him, and for him to admit he was human like the rest of us was difficult.
So, he needed me to be there for him and not only on a part-time basis. He needed me to make time for him and encourage him to talk. In short, he needed more of a commitment from me.
But, being stuck in an unhappy marriage for almost thirty years, had made me wary of a full-on partnership. Therefore, it had been me who wanted to keep our two-year-old relationship on an informal footing. It had been me who wanted us to continue as friends and lovers, but not move in together. However, I’d been kidding myself Jack was all right with that, and I’d recently realised our relationship wasn’t fulfilling for either of us.
Anne Stormont was born in Scotland and although she has travelled all over the world – including a teaching exchange to South Africa, four trips to Australia and several visits to the Middle East – it’s where she still lives.
She began making up stories as a child in order to entertain her four wee sisters. But as an adult, being busy with motherhood and working as a teacher, it took a long time and a mortality wake-up call for her to get that first book written.
She’s a compulsive crossworder, yoga practitioner, avid reader, keen walker and enthusiastic gardener. She can be a bit of a subversive old bat, but she tries to maintain a kind heart. She also loves tea, penguins and being with her grandchildren.
Fulfilment is the third of the 3 books in the Rachel & Jack: Skye Series. Anne’s books are all set in Scotland and are contemporary romances where the main characters may be slightly older but are not necessarily wiser.
You can find out more about Anne and her books at her website anne-stormont.com