Hello, Cathy, and thank you so much for hosting me on your blog today! I must admit I’m super-excited about being here to introduce you to the heroine of my August release, Everlasting, Book IV of the Claddagh Series. It’s wonderful to be back in Ballycashel again!
Those of you who read Coming Home (Book II) might remember Shannon Flynn. She’s the oldest of Tom Flynn’s three daughters, and when last seen, the fifteen-year-old girl was enjoying a budding romance with Mike Donovan.
But time passed and Shannon grew up to face a sudden, shocking tragedy. Now she’s filled with bitterness and determined to exact revenge on the man she holds responsible for the loss of her fiancé.
So allow me to introduce you to Shannon Flynn, all the way from Ballycashel, County Galway, Ireland.
(A gracious nod.) Go raibh maith agat. Thank you.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I enjoy long walks in the woods. I sometimes draw. (A wicked smile) I draw lovely pictures of crows in flight. Just ask Lord Bennington. And I walk by the sea…and remember.
Aye. Remember. Remember how it used to be, when all of us were young. (An aching sigh) ‘Twas the three of us, d’ye see? Meself, Mike and Sean O’Brien. We’d go wading in the strand, catch a fish or two in the river. I loved Sean, so I did. But I loved him like a brother. We were born on the same day, and I grew up alongside him. Sure, wasn’t I in and out of the Big House as if ‘twere me own home? Sean was a brother, but Mike… (Her eyes fill with tears, and she glances away for a moment before forcing a smile) Those were good days, happy days, when we were children and nothing could hurt us, nothing could separate us.
It sounds like you had some wonderful times together. What is your greatest fear?
(Her lashes drop, she studies her hands) Losing the people I love. (A pained pause) I lost Sean. I loved him so much, but sure, wasn’t he involved with the Crow Boys? He and the boys were determined to help set old Erin free, and they thought burning Bennington House was the way to do it. Instead, they were almost caught by the Constabulary. When it was all over, my da’d been shot and Sean fled. He’s in America now, living with his sister, Katie, and ‘tis said he’s done well for himself. But, sure, he’ll never see Ireland again. Son of the landlord or no, there’s a price on his head. (Her eyes fill with tears) And then I lost Mike. The only man I’ve ever loved.
What is your most prized possession?
Sure, for a poor Irish tenant, possessions are few and far between. But I cherish my slingshot. Sean made if for me. Said I might need it one day to fight off the boys. (Her eyes glitter with defiant pride) Well, sure, I never used it for that, but didn’t it come in handy on another occasion? But ye’ll have to read my story to find out about that particular incident.
What’s your most vivid memory?
(Shannon is silent for a long time, a look of utter sadness crossing her face) ‘Twas a cold January day when food was scarce and the hunger ran deep in all Lord Bennington’s tenants. Mike was one of those tenants, and sure, he couldn’t bear to see his brothers and sisters go hungry. My da offered to take him fishing—Da’s been fishing the sea since he was a lad, and his da and his grandda before him.
But a storm blew up without warnin’, and the boat was destroyed. Da managed to swim ashore, but Mike— (a single tear streaks down one cheek)—sure, Mike couldn’t swim. The sea took him. We never even found his body. I say a prayer for him every night, as I have since we lost him, and didn’t I tie a rag to the Rag Tree in the hopes that God would bring him home?
(She squares her shoulders and blinks away her tears, a small smile curving her lips.) I’ll always remember Mike. Sure, wasn’t he me own first love? But I’m happy now, happier than I ever dreamed possible with my Liam and our children.
Shannon, thank you for being here with us today.
Ah, ‘tis I should be thankin’ ye. And may I be offerin’ yer readers a wee Irish blessing?
May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face;
the rains fall soft upon your fields, and until we meet again,
may God hold you in the palm of His hand.
Go raibh maith agat. Thank you, Shannon and Cynthia for the wonderful interview. Everlasting promises to be a wonderful story, and Shannon sounds like a feisty, heart-melting heroine. I look forward to reading it soon!