An interview with New Adult bestselling author Marata Eros, and her fearless heroine, Jewell (aka Jess Mackey).
***Major Spoiler Alert for those who have not read A TERRIBLE LOVE***
Marata Eros: Hi Jewell, it’s so good to meet you. I feel like you’re letting me “in,” what, with all the secrecy and hiding you’ve done. I feel privileged you agreed to meet me.
Jewell: she looks at me with shy curiosity and I’m struck by her green eyes, they’re so much more vibrant as she sits in front of me. Thanks for writing Cas for me. I was so willing to let myself disappear before he came for me. I’d given up and then Cas was there, reminding me that life was worth fighting for.
ME: smiles. I always knew that if the right man entered your life, it would give you the confidence to try again. I watch her sit across from me, unconsciously moving her feet so her toes point vertically against the floor, then flat. Then up again. Even when she’s sitting, Jewell is dancing in her head.
Jewell: You were right, you know. Jewell rolls her lip into her mouth, nibbling it. Cas woke me up. I feel like I was just existing, doing a bad job in my classes, going through the motions and then Cas was there…
ME: grins. And man, was he!
Jewell: she nods, then frowns, her wedding ring catching the sunlight through the high window in the room we sit in. The clock ticks and Jewell plays with the slim platinum band and catches me looking at it. I always felt like Thad would end up where I was. She looks at me and I feel an unspoken accusation. After all, I let him find her. And he did.
ME: I nod, because there’s no denying it. How do you feel about Thad’s death?
Jewell: her expression turns angry, her eyes taking on a hard edge. He deserves what happened to him because Faith was pure. She just was.
ME: I feel a pang of regret at Faith’s death, I always do when I kill my characters. Have you been able to move on from her death? Do you like dancing for the Seattle Pacific Ballet Company?
Jewell: Her face breaks into a grin that rivals the bright sunlight in the room. Yes! She tugs at her legwarmers that cover the tops of her clogs. It’s where I belong… it’s where I feel like I was meant to be. Her eyes hold a sheen. Faith is always with me, but I’m not always sad.
ME: I change the subject, grinning slyly. How’s married life treatin’ ya?
Jewell: she flushes a brilliant scarlet, the blush matching her hair. Ah… it’s amazing! Laughs. I mean, pauses, there’s that dance studio. Her eyes meet mind, and there a bold knowledge there. One we share.
ME: Yeah, that dance studio gets pretty good use, right. Chuckles.
Jewell: she grins, the blush flaring back to life. Absolutely!
ME: Do you see any of the other agents?
Jewell: she nods. We do, Cas and me. Brad, I mean- Dec. He’s best friends with Cas but since that last case he worked in Alaska. Her eyes meet mine again with a coolness that probably won’t go away. I’m not always a gentle writer. Well, he’s having some trouble adjusting. Her eyes get a little flinty.
ME: I frown, wanting to know more about this character I love, who speaks so loudly in my head I lose sleep. What can you tell me about him? Is he okay? Will Clearwater be okay?
Jewell: she laughs, chiding me. Marata… you know better. That’s for the next book.
ME: I stare back at Jewell. She’s right of course. I press anyway. What can you tell the readers?
Jewell: her eyes narrow suspiciously on her creator. Uh-uh. You’re not getting away with anything. I will say though, that he needs the love of a good woman.
ME: my mild frown turns to a scowl. I could make you tell me. Crosses arms in a huff.
Jewell: she smiles knowingly. No, it doesn’t’ work that way. You let your work have its way with you, that’s what you did with A TERRIBLE LOVE. It was my story. You let me choose who I wanted, to believe in myself and love Cas when everything he did seemed like he was lusting.
ME: But he wasn’t, was he?
Jewell: she shakes her head, her deep auburn hair holding its own fire, a flame without end. No, he always loved me, he just needed to find the path.
ME: And you were the map. resolute
Jewell: I was, I still am. Her eyes gaze into mine. Believing, trusting.
ME: I stand and she does too. She’s tiny and fragile. But so strong. Like all my characters, steel wrapped in silk. I bend over from my six inch height difference and fold her into my embrace. I don’t want to let go. But finally, I do.
Jewell: Bye Marata. She flutters her fingers and my chest gets tight. I hate these goodbyes.
ME: See you next time. I watch her leave, her grace a living breathing thing.
Jewell: she turns, her slender fingers rest on the doorjamb and the light slants across her lips. Maybe. You never know.
ME: No, I think, you never know.