Wonderland (Fall Fires)
by Jude Ouvrard
Jude Ouvrard’s second novella, Wonderland, was released in October 2013. You can also read my blog post on Jude’s first novella, Under the Sun. They are both romances for young adults (between 18-30).
Lucas Colton is far too young to go through all this pain but meeting poetry teacher, Preston Davidson, changed everything. His life went from heartbreak to joyful and then, from friendship to love. The impact Preston had on Lucas’ life was mesmerising. What would you do if you knew you may not have a tomorrow?
When I arrived at Central Park, Preston was sitting by the statue of Alice in Wonderland with two steaming cups of coffee in hand. He wore a canary yellow sweatshirt with a pair of dark blue jeans and black leather converse.
“You’re on time,” I teased, taking one of the cups from him.
“I figure I shouldn’t waste any more time.” Preston took a sip of his coffee. “Life is too important right now. I don’t want to miss anything.”
“I can see that you’ve thought about my situation thoroughly.” I couldn’t help but be flattered. It was obvious now that he cared about me, even if just as a friend.
“I have a few questions for you. If you don’t mind, of course.”
Curious, I wanted to know what was going on inside his brain. Looking through his glasses, I saw how tired his eyes were, how the rims were red. He hadn’t slept all night, I would bet. “I’m not sure I’ll be able to answer all of them, but I’m willing to try.”
Preston made me nervous, and I hoped he wasn’t going to ask for a medical explanation. I had asked to be told what was necessary. The details weren’t important to me. All I knew was that I had kidney cancer, and that it had started to spread to my other organs. My lungs were affected, but they were giving me enough medication to keep me out of pain.
“I want you to name three things you can’t live without,” he said. That seemed pretty simple, nothing to be worried about.
“Coffee, a good movie, and cheesecake.” I laughed. “You took me off guard. I don’t know, but those are things that I enjoy, I guess.”
“It’s perfect. Now tell me: what would you do if bacteria were killing all the coffee beans in the world, and you foresaw that thirty days from now, you wouldn’t be able to find a single coffee bean in the world?”
Was Preston serious? What kind of question was that? I shook my head and smiled. “I’d drink as much as I could, and I’d try to freeze some to keep for special occasions.”
“Good answer. Now tell me: what would you do if the film industry decided that it was no longer profit-earning to produce movies and that thirty days from now, there wouldn’t be any movies anywhere for sale or rent?”
“I would buy as many movies as I could afford, and go to the movie theater one last time.”
“Another great answer. Last, but not least: what would you do if the Cheesecake Factory was going bankrupt, and thirty days from now, you couldn’t find a single piece of cheesecake in the entire world?”
“I would eat cheesecake for every meal, gain weight, and die of heart failure,” I joked.
Preston laughed. “I’m asking you all these questions because I’ve come up with a plan. You said you might have weeks to live. Let’s hope you have a month. You have to make the most out of it. You have to enjoy and do everything you’ve ever dreamed of doing. Are you ready to have the best time of your life?”
A smile spread over my lips. “Okay, I see where you’re going with this.”
“I’ll spend that month with you. I want to be with you every time you smile or cry, when you feel good, or when you’re in pain. You can’t do this alone, Lucas. So tell me: what is it that you’ve always dreamed of doing?”
“I’m a pretty simple guy; don’t need much to be happy, so forgive me if we aren’t going to Australia. I think we’ll stay here in New York.”
“Sounds good to me — and my wallet.” Preston looked at me, waiting for me to tell him everything I wanted to do before the end came.
“I want to go to a rock concert.”
“Perfect.” He wrote it down in his pocket size notebook. “What else?”
“Um, I want to watch all the Star Wars movies while eating greasy pizza in front of a fireplace.”
“Today is your lucky day; I have a fireplace at home.” Preston had a huge grin on his face. He was enjoying this, probably more than I was. “Next?”
“I want to see a Broadway show. Don’t care which production, just want to watch one.”
“I’ve seen them all so I’ll take you to see my favorite.” He lifted his eyes from his pad up to mine. “Anything else?”
I took few moments to think, my hand reached for my chin while I looked at the sky.
“I want to go to a gospel celebration.” I laughed while he wrote it down. “And I want us to sing our hearts out and dance with them.”
“We’ll see about the dancing part. Keep going with the ideas.”
“I don’t know. I want to take long walks in Central Park. This is my favorite season.”
“We’ll come here every day, if you want.”
I nodded. Preston put his notebook into the back pocket of his jeans and looked at me like he was seeing my soul. I felt the vibration and the appreciation for everything he was doing for me, but I couldn’t get my head around it. Why would he do all of this for me? I had just met him, after all.
By John R.
Wonderland is a powerfully written book that if you don’t cry or have at least a tear in your eye after reading the end of it, you are not human! Jude Ouvrard, bestselling author of Under The Sun, over delivers in this poignant tale of a young poet and the beautiful relationship that develops between himself and his professor. This well written book is destined to be a movie, it’s that good!
About the Author
Jude was born and raised in a small village named Lacolle. She now lives in Montreal, Canada. She is the proud mother of a beautiful four year old son, and has spent the last twelve years with her partner, Cedric.
French is her native language, but she prefers to write in her second language, English.
Besides working full time for a Title Insurance Company and being a mother, Jude has a passion for books, both reading and writing them.
Her first novella, Under the Sun, was released July 2013. It is part of a beach reads series called Heat Wave. Her second novella, Wonderland, released in October 2013, is part of a fall series called Fall Fires. Both are be published with Renaissance Romance Publishing.