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Authors: S. E. Smith

Touching Rune

BOOK: Touching Rune
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Touching Rune
Heaven Sent [2]
S. E. Smith
S. E. Smith, LLC (2013)

Rune August embraces her life in New York City in 1894. She has lived again and again through many different time periods but has never found tranquility until she walked into St. Agnes Home for Orphans. In her heart, she believes she has found a place she can call home. She will do everything she can to give the children in the orphanage a better life.

When a developer sets his sights on the property she and the children call home, she doesn’t hesitate to fight back - and win. But that win comes at a terrible price... her life… casting her once again into the shadows.

Refusing to leave the children unprotected, she watches over and protects them in a different form… as the beloved statue in their center garden. But her time as the children’s guardian angel draws to a close when the orphanage is renovated. Rune finds herself packed away and sold. Her new home is now far away from the familiar streets of New York and the children she loves.

Sergei Vasiliev and his best friend and bodyguard, Dimitri Mihailov, run one of the most powerful computer software development companies in the world. Both men carry deep scars from their life on the streets and from living in the world of the ultra-rich. Sergei knows men want him for his power and women want him for his money. Dimitri knows that some men and women would do anything to gain the secrets their company is developing.

Their lives change when Sergei purchases a statue for their home outside of Moscow. There is something about the statue of the young woman that touches an unexpected need deep inside both of them.

An impulsive purchase and a simple wish will change their lives forever. For anyone who touches Rune learns that love and hope are what makes the world a better place. Can she warm the hearts of two bitter, scarred men before the last petal falls from the Christmas rose that grows in the garden that has become her new home or will she be forever frozen, destined to only love them from afar?

 

Touching Rune:

Heaven Sent Book 2

By S. E. Smith

 

 

Acknowledgments

I would like to thank my husband Steve for believing in me and being proud enough of me to give me the courage to follow my dream. I would also like to give a special thank you to my sister and best friend Linda who not only encouraged me to write but who also read the manuscript. Also to my other friends who believe in me: Julie, Jackie, Lisa, Sally, Elizabeth (Beth) and Narelle. The girls that keep me going!

—S. E. Smith

 

 

Science Fiction Romance

TOUCHING RUNE: HEAVEN SENT BOOK 2

Copyright © 2013 by S. E. Smith

First E-Book Published December 2013

Cover Design by Melody Simmons

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED: This literary work may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including electronic or photographic reproduction, in whole or in part, without express written permission from the author.

All characters, places, and events in this book are fictitious or have been used fictitiously and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, actual events, locales, or organizations are strictly coincidental.

 

Synopsis

Rune August embraces her life in New York City in 1894. She has lived again and again through many different time periods but has never found tranquility until she walked into St. Agnes Home for Orphans. In her heart, she believes she has found a place she can call home. She will do everything she can to give the children in the orphanage a better life.

When a developer sets his sights on the property she and the children call home, she doesn’t hesitate to fight back - and win. But that win comes at a terrible price... her life… casting her once again into the shadows.

Refusing to leave the children unprotected, she watches over and protects them in a different form… as the beloved statue in their center garden. But her time as the children’s guardian angel draws to a close when the orphanage is renovated. Rune finds herself packed away and sold. Her new home is now far away from the familiar streets of New York and the children she loves.

Sergei Vasiliev and his best friend and bodyguard, Dimitri Mihailov, run one of the most powerful computer software development companies in the world. Both men carry deep scars from their life on the streets and from living in the world of the ultra-rich. Sergei knows men want him for his power and women want him for his money. Dimitri knows that some men and women would do anything to gain the secrets their company is developing.

 

Their lives change when Sergei purchases a statue for their home outside of Moscow. There is something about the statue of the young woman that touches an unexpected need deep inside both of them.

An impulsive purchase and a simple wish will change their lives forever. For anyone who touches Rune learns that love and hope are what makes the world a better place. Can she warm the hearts of two bitter, scarred men before the last petal falls from the Christmas rose that grows in the garden that has become her new home or will she be forever frozen, destined to only love them from afar?

 

 

Chapter 1

New York City, St. Agnes Orphanage 1894

“Rune, look at me!” Mary Katherine cried out as she twirled around in the new dress that Sister Helen had made for her. “Don’t I look beautiful? Do you think the Wrights will choose me?”

Rune grinned as the excited six year twirled around in a circle so her dress would fly out around her. Sister Mary stood to the side smiling serenely. Neither one of them let on that the faded dress had seen better days or had been passed down time and time again. To both of them, Mary Katherine looked beautiful with her shiny brown curls and rosy cheeks.

“I think the last thing you need is a bouquet of flowers to give Mrs. Wright,” Rune said as she pulled the left over flowers she had tucked away for just this occasion. “I bet she would love them as much as she’ll love you.”

Mary Katherine gasped and ran over to give Rune a huge hug before she carefully took the small offering. Her eyes shone with excitement as she stared into Rune’s warm brown eyes. A small dimple formed as she smiled up at Rune.

“Oh thank you, Rune,” Mary Katherine whispered. “I’ll take very good care of them until they come.”

“It is a good thing that won’t be long,” Sister Anna said sternly from behind Mary Katherine. “Come along, Mary Katherine. The Wrights are here to see you now.”

Rune leaned down and hugged the delicate little girl. “Remember to smile and be polite,” she whispered. “They are going to love you as much as I do.”

“I love you too, Rune,” Mary Katherine whispered before she gave Rune a quick kiss on her cheek.

“Go shine for them, rosebud,” Rune whispered back as she watched Mary Katherine follow Sister Anna into the orphanage.

Sister Mary walked over to where Rune stood watching the departing figures. She brushed a strand of long dark brown hair back behind Rune’s ear that had fallen loose. She studied the face of the young woman who had appeared out of nowhere five years before when they desperately needed help.

A serious outbreak of Whooping Cough had struck the orphanage. The four Sisters of St. Agnes had been unable to handle the almost thirty children who contracted it. Rune had walked in and taken over when Sister Helen and Mother Magdalene came down sick as well. She had been a part of their small family ever since.

“Do you think they’ll adopt her?” Rune asked in a soft, worried voice.

“Only God knows, child,” Sister Mary said. “My goodness, what happened to your wrist?”

Rune looked down at her wrist in surprise. She started to pull the sleeve of her blouse back over it but Sister Mary reached down and gently gripped her hand so she could take a closer look at the dark bruises that marred the delicate skin.

“It’s nothing,” Rune started to say but Sister Mary refused to release her right wrist.

“Who did this to you?” Sister Mary asked in concern. “Was it that dreadful Mr. Randolph?”

“Sister Mary,” Rune sighed. “He came to see me over in the market. I took care of him. There is nothing to worry about.”

“What did he want?” Sister Mary demanded. “Was it about the orphanage again? The church will not sell him the property. We have a written agreement from the Archbishop himself that as long as there are children living here that it will remain open.”

“I told him that,” Rune replied, looking around the garden that she had created for the children. “He… wanted me to convince you that you needed to change the Archbishop’s mind or he would have to take matters into his own hands.”

“You need to tell Mother Magdalene. She needs to know he threatened you,” Sister Mary insisted. “What else did he say?”

Rune blushed and lowered her head. She couldn’t tell the Sisters what else Walter Randolph said. She had become livid at his crude comments and she had let him know she would not let him talk to her in such a manner. She brushed her long braid over her shoulder and shrugged instead of answering Sister Mary.

“He just wanted me to convince Mother Magdalene to talk to the Archbishop,” she mumbled.

Sister Mary’s lips tightened as she looked at the lovely young woman standing in front of her. She could see the flush on her cheeks and the anger in her eyes as she looked at the ground. She reached out and touched Rune’s cheek and smiled in understanding.

“You are a very lovely young woman, Rune,” Sister Mary said. “You have a heart of gold and you have given that gold to not only the children who live here but to the Sisters of St. Agnes. I just want you to know that we are here for you as well.”

Rune lifted her head and gazed at Sister Mary with a look of determination in her eyes. “You… all of you… are the family I lost,” Rune whispered. “I won’t let anything happen to you. I’ll protect you and the children, no matter what Randolph threatens to do.”

“You are part of our family as well, Rune,” Sister Mary said. “Never doubt that.”

Rune smiled and was about to reply when suddenly the center courtyard garden was overflowing with excited children. Mary Katherine came running as fast as her legs could move. She had a huge grin on her face.

“Rune! I’ve got a family,” she called out as she threw herself into Rune’s open arms. “I have a mommy and daddy.”

“And they have a beautiful daughter,” Rune laughed as she swung Mary Katherine around in a circle before setting her down and smiling at the young couple walking toward her.

“I believe these came from you,” the young woman said with a smile as she lifted the small bouquet of flowers. “Thank you.”

Rune smiled back. “No, thank you,” she responded as the other children gathered around to wish Mary Katherine goodbye.

Rune watched with a combination of happiness and sadness. She had dreamed a long time ago about having a family but it was not meant to be. Instead, she accepted the children and Sisters into her heart and let them fill her life with joy.

She looked around the cheerful garden that she had worked hard on. Brilliant flowers bloomed everywhere. They reminded her of the children; each different, delicate yet colorful.

Yes, I will do everything in my power to protect them,
she thought as love swelled inside her.
This is what I was meant to do.

BOOK: Touching Rune
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