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Victory Cove, ME
Illness and the need for you to understand your heritage have finally given me the courage to write to you. I know you went to good parents. I have my mother to thank for that. I want you to find her, Jake. I want you to find my mother. Her name is Estelle Wakefield.
I wish I had an admirable reason for not contacting you sooner, something valiant like I didn't want to disturb your life. But the truth is simply guilt.
I loved you, son. In my dreams, I still see the gold in your eyes, eyes that looked so much like your father's. If only you had known him.
It's hard for me to write now. I have to end this letter. Find Estelle, Jake. Find Estelle, and find your heritage.
That was how it started.
A mysterious letter from a woman who, after thirty-five years of silence, finally decided to make contact with her alleged son.
Now eight hours from home, Jake Grogan was following futile internet directions to a town that didn't even register on Google maps.
Am I insane?
Also adopted, Jake's sister, Sara, was mostly to blame for this crazy endeavor. Hell, she practically pushed him out the door with the closest directions she could manage programmed into his Droid phone. Her enthusiasm spurred on Jake's curiosity.
Something in the woman's words, the woman in the letter, the woman who claimed to be his mother. Something sounded so poignant. So mysterious. It was worth investigating.
Or maybe he was just looking for an excuse to leave Boston for a while. The Adams Tower project, which he had slaved over for more than a year, was finally complete. To that very same project, he'd sacrificed a relationship, like offering up a virgin to the voracious manufacturing gods.
Well, she was no virgin.
Perhaps this trip was just self-amnesty for a lifestyle that kept him too busy to cultivate personal interaction or even have the incentive to do so.
Or perhapshe was just damn curious.
It must have been his fifth pass down the same road. Victory Cove had one main thoroughfare, an elevated street scarred with potholes big enough to swallow a small child. Antique shops and restaurants lined one side, and a craggy shoreline tapered off the other as successive gray waves sprayed against the shore. Lobster boats cosseted together, bobbed in the swells waiting for spring and their grand release from the jetty.
The gas-station attendant said that Wakefield House was on Grayson Path.
Rain plastered the windshield, the wipers ineffective against the deluge. Jake leaned forward and squinted until the profile of a lighthouse was visible atop a rocky sea cliff. The structure was tall, with a white masonry surface, its lantern and gallery painted black. He waited a breath for the beacon to flash and was dismayed when it remained dark.
Past the lighthouse. You can't miss it.