The Restoration- A Deleted Scene.
Sometimes, after I initially purge the story out of me, I’ll find parts I’ve written that just don’t work. That was the case with this scene:
I hear a the cracking of dried leaves behind me and my muscles tense. Throwing myself up from the boulder, I swirl around with my hands curling into fists, ready to spring into action. From behind the tree branches a shadow moves and Eric steps out into the clearing. My body buzzes with adrenaline, uncertain if it should be released, and I stand there, staring at him as my wild heart pumps in my chest.
Eric narrows his blue eyes when he notice me there. He’s about to say something but closes his mouth as his eyes drift over my shoulder. I whip around. Claire is walking towards us.
“Ellie! There you are!” Her eyes swing over to Eric behind me, but otherwise she ignores him as she breaks out into a jog and throws her arms around me.
My face creases in confusion as she hugs me like it’s been ages since we’ve last seen each other.
“Don’t do that to me again,” she whispers, and as she lets go of me I catch her eyes, taking note of the genuine worry behind them.
“I didn’t realize you were looking for me…” I’m not sure what else to say. There’s something in the air around us and I can’t quite identity it.
“What are you doing over here alone?” She asks, taking my hand and tugging me towards her.
“I just needed some space,” I mumble, allowing her to lead me back to the party.
A twig snaps behind us, reminding me of Eric’s presence and I look back over my shoulder.
“Maybe the next time you need some SPACE you should stay a little closer to the crowd,” he grumbles.
“What the hell is going on with you?” Claire whispers, guiding me back towards the campfires and away from Eric.
“Do you think I manipulate everyone around me?” I ask, pathetically.
She looks over at me with her big green eyes, and then turns away. “I don’t know Ellie. You have me so afraid of getting pregnant that I’ve hardly touched a guy in a year, and that’s getting a little frustrating.” She lets out a forced laugh. “And then with Matt– you kind of hold him to standards I don’t think you’re expecting him to achieve. That’s sort of unfair.”
I twist out from underneath her arm. “You were the one who told me I should go for him. I told you it wasn’t possible for me to love him.”
She nods. “I know, but what did I know? I thought it’d be simple. You ignore Luke and let Matt charm the pants off you instead… But it wasn’t like that. Every time I see Luke he looks miserable. I’ve watched him at parties, and at school, scanning everyone there to see if he can find you.” She shakes her head.
“And you! You’ve just fallen apart! I don’t know if this is how you always get in the year leading up to your birthday, but Ellie…”
“So you think I manipulate everyone around me?” I confirm, stopping my tracks. “Do you think I manipulated Steven.”
Claire’s face falls and she slowly shakes her head. “No. I think you care about everyone you love.” She walks over to me and puts her arm back around my shoulder and we start walking again. “I think you believe you’re doing what’s best for everyone; I just don’t think you know what that is yet.”
I can’t be mad at her because she’s right. I don’t know what’s right for everyone because I still don’t know all of their secrets yet, including hers.
Claire steers me through the crowd and over to one of the kegs set up down on the shore of the lake. One of Steven’s friends from the team hands Claire and I some beers, and we thank him. He chats with Claire about the memorial, and I tune them out.
The scene got pulled from the book for a lot of reasons, but mostly because it didn’t really add anything to the story or help move the plot along.
It still has some nice moments to it though. I liked Claire’s assessment of Ellie and, I have to admit, that line was one of the parts that had me second-guessing myself. That happens sometimes. I’ll get attached to a small portion of what I’ve written and beat myself up when I have to sacrifice it for ‘the greater good’. But at least now you guys still get to read it!
Let’s pretend this is Wattpad. Go ahead and give me your thoughts on this chunk. I’ll tell you this…it was taken from a part of the book you haven’t read yet. I’m wondering if it helps you with your theories at all? Or what, if anything, you’re reading into Claire and Eric here.
I’m hoping to post a sneak peek of what you do have in store for you sometime this week. So stay tuned for that, and who knows? Maybe I’ll even treat you guys to some more deleted scenes.