This is an excerpt from Catriona’s Curse. Not much romance in this scene I’m afraid. The speaker is my main character, Matthew Sunshine Nelson a/k/a Sunny.
After church, the whole family gathered at Mom and Dad’s house. The adults spent the day lounging around the pool watching the kids play until Dad fired up the grill and cooked some steak and chicken kabobs and roasted some corn in the husks.
Although the family was active in the Methodist Church and attended services regularly, Mom still semi-observes the Pagan holidays. In keeping with the celebration of Litha or the Summer Solstice, she marinated the meat for the kabobs in thyme and chamomile. The tossed salad contained rose petals, and there was a fresh fruit salad with a lemon-flavored dressing. She also prepared fresh green beans with thyme, basil, and fennel.
On each wall of the room a sconce held a different colored candle, yellow for Air in the east, red for Fire in the south, blue for Water in the west, and green for Earth on the north. So even though Mom hadn’t cast an official circle and didn’t follow the complete ritual of Litha, as she lit the candles, there was a feeling of peace and protection.
I remembered when I was a kid and friends ate with us, they often remarked on the strange flavorings Mom used. We lost a lot of possible friends over the years because other parents were afraid for their kids to come to our house.