Beyond Constraint: a novel

Even as a child I was writing constantly. Ideas just seemed to flow. However, it’s only recently that I’ve had time to write seriously. Since I’ve retired I’ve written a novel called Beyond Constraint. It takes place in Washington, DC, Zurich, Switzerland and West Virginia. The saga portrays the life of Tianna Dewar, a girl from a poor family who dares to dream and to triumph.  In rural West Virginia, at a horse racing complex, a repressed but resourceful young Tianna acquires shrewd determination, discovers the bitterness of injustice, and learns to survive.  In the wake of tragedy she becomes a wealthy entrepreneur and embraces international humanitarianism.  As a successful woman, Tianna has almost everything she fought for, but for a recently discovered, beastly plot planned by her twin sons.

Excerpt from Part 2 – Beginnings – 1955 – 1961. “Early Life”

Once back at the barn, she washes the young gelding down, erasing all particles of mud, then covers him with a light blanket that buckles at his chest.  After pouring out fresh water, the contented rider pats him on the neck.

“Good boy,” she murmurs, kissing the powerful mount on the nose.  Finally, kicking off her dirty riding boots, she wipes a sleeve across her spattered face and runs to the house for breakfast.

Tianna’s family lives in a small cabin on the grounds of a racing stable sprawled on the banks of the Shenandoah River in West Virginia.  The father, Angus Dewar, a small, thin man, works as a bookkeeper for the business operation.  His salary hardly keeps the family in food….

Excerpt from Part 3 – New Worlds – 1964 – 1967. “Zurich, Switzerland”

“I’ve applied to an international company based in Zurich, Switzerland,” she explains, happy to share information about her new-found possibility.  “They trade in precious gems and metals.”

“My goodness, that does sound exotic, Tia.  What would you do there?”

“I’d learn how their business is set up, where and with whom they trade.  I’d also learn to manage all about the kinds of contracts and currency it takes to make that type of business run,” she rushes on.  “I now know that I want to be involved in international trade; maybe not in that field exactly, but this experience will give me a solid understanding and the contacts I need.

“I’m certain all these skills are transferrable to any kind of international business concept I might want to develop in the future.  I can learn a lot here, Paul, and then decide how I want to move forward.  I really hope I’m selected for the internship.”

“I hardly know what to say to you, Tia, except to encourage you to take advantage of this unique opportunity.”  He pauses for just a moment, then, “I’m sure you will be offered the position and I know you’ll benefit immensely from the experience,” he predicts.  Then with a roguish smile, “Now I know we’ll meet in Europe while we’re both there.”

Excerpt from Part 1 – Conflict Within – 2012. “Threats Unveiled”

Tianna apprehensively turns on the video.  Her sons, Hugh and Derek Fleming, alone in the boardroom, do not realize that the camera is still running.

Derek is speaking aggressively.  “It’s time to make our move, Hugh.”

“Activating the imported drug links, you mean?”

“Yeah, using mother’s business we’ve built a good cover here; found the right people, put everything in place.”

“Our business is going to….?”

“Be worth millions, Hugh.  Remember?  We’re working on importing opium illegally into New York City, then through our contacts, filtering it to Washington and the whole northeast.”

“I know, but I still have reservations about this operation undermining Mother’s credibility, Derek.  She’s built a trustworthy trade network from its birth.”….

Excerpt from Part 5 – The Big Divide – 1973 – 1979. “West Virginia”

“Well, let me give you a visual tour,” he begins.  “Of course, down along where you drove in is the mighty Potomac,” he asserts, reaching out his arm to express the distance.  “And on this side,” he adds, gesturing with the other arm, “is a county park that includes twenty-five miles of designated walking and riding trails.”

“It’s beautiful,” she breathes when he stops for a moment.

“But the best part is, Tia, that on the third side over here, we back onto another large private property–one that I’d love to get my hands on one day,” he reveals.  “I really have big plans for that land, too.”

“It’s all just as I imagined but nothing like I imagined, if you know what I mean.  It’s been in my imagination for so long that I think I know every nook and cranny of it, but to actually see it for the first time is unbelievable.”

“Let’s take a look at it bit by bit now,” Kyle offers.  “I love the undulation of the land, Tia, from this knoll, you can see how the land dips away to a large flat area of several acres by the Potomac.  That’s the area I see for the main buildings, the stables, riding rings, paddocks, lungeing ring and farrier work, as well as the location of outbuildings like a business centre from which we organize events and have a club-like area for riders.  I’d like to….”