RAOK Release Party: Reni Kieffer + Exclusive Prequel!

February 16, 2015

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To celebrate the release of the Random Acts of Kindness anthology today, some of the authors will be sharing with you a little glimpse behind each of their stories.

 

Steve and Alec appeared to me one night without warning to tell me about kindness. They showed up nameless and insisted on staying that way for a long while. Because names are not the important piece of information in The Blue Arrow. Steve and Alec could be anyone, and who knows what might happen, if we reach out a hand and show some compassion to a stranger, without expecting anything in return. Be kind once in a while. Be selfless. There is beauty in altruism, and if, by chance, you find a friend, a lover, or even a spouse in the process, there is magic in it, too.

 

Here’s an exclusive prequel to The Blue Arrow:

 

“I used to see him everywhere. The boy with the ruffled hair, the lanky posture of youth and the hat askew on his head. He seemed to follow me. I saw him at the airport as I left home, at the side of the road, next to me on the train, when I still could afford to travel.

I haven’t been able to do that in a while. My current means of transport are my own two feet. I walk a lot. Sometimes, I just wander the streets all day, trying to find something, a solution, maybe, or maybe just inspiration, I don’t know. Some days I don’t even bother to get up. I just lie there in my tiny corner and stare past the bricks and the concrete at the sky, watch the clouds drift by like my own tattered thoughts. And I wonder. What to do. How to change again. Why. Sometimes, the cold is so exhausting that I imagine my bones freezing inside my body, and I don’t dare move for fear they might break.

The cold is the worst.

I can deal with hunger and thirst and the lack of hygiene. I can deal with the violence and the social shabbiness, the looks and the ignorance of the lucky ones who are better off than us. But the cold wears me down. No matter how many clothes you manage to pull on (and I don’t own a whole lot of clothes anymore), no matter who grants you shelter for the night, and no matter how many blankets and how much soup they offer, the cold is insistent. Once it has its teeth dug into your bones, there’s no way to get rid of it again.

It even drove the boy away. He, who has formed my fate before and has led me here of all places with his blue arrow, was driven away by the bitterness of this winter. And even though the loss of him feels like a missing limb, I understand him perfectly.

That morning, I saw him again. He was leaning against the wall outside the place I never walk into. I can’t afford the food, no matter how cheap their daily offer, and the tables are too polished, and the girl behind the counter looks like someone who would regard me with pity. I cannot stand someone this beautiful feeling sorry for me. But the boy insisted and with some trepidation I crossed the street and entered the place. And then his blue arrow hit me right in the back. Again.”

 

Reni Kieffer Author Page Here.

Check out Random Acts of Kindness here!

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