Book one in the Santa Katrina Trilogy. Download books two and three.
Kate never put stock in the rumor that she was the first daughter born in 200 years to the Thomas family. It wasn't believable and it wasn't something she could have controlled if she wanted to. And she liked being the youngest girl. But things have a way of changing and something as ridiculous as being the only daughter turned out to be the loose thread that unraveled a long hidden paranormal family secret.
Katherine Ann squirmed in her mother’s arms after her feeding. She was restless and nothing was helping to put her down for the night. It was half past eleven and the next day would be long if the baby didn’t get to sleep. Three-week-olds needed their rest and her mother and aunt needed to begin corrective actions. If things were even correctable.
She was a beautiful daughter and her mother was elated to finally have a little girl. “What am I going to do with you?” Her mother teased with a personal underlying angst. “We shouldn’t have run off. The family must be wondering where we are. Eric most of all, he named you.” The baby grinned her toothless smile as her mom’s fingers gently circled her wispy tresses.
Eric was the youngest of the twins and since Matt named Brian it was only fair that Eric named their sister. Especially considering he knew she was a girl before anyone. Even after Ron explained to his sons that there hadn’t been a daughter born to the Thomas family in countless generations Eric insisted and wanted to name her Katherine Ann. Katherine after Katharine Hepburn having just seen Bringing Up Baby and Ann after his favorite grandmother, the same one that had him watching old black and white movies at the age of four. He magnanimously allowed her to be Kate for short.
Stretching her small torso Kate shuttered from exhaustion but stubbornly stayed awake. “What’s taking Auntie so long?” No one in the family dillydallied and the list for the market was short; diapers, food, diapers, coffee and more diapers.
Kate fussed but didn’t cry. She curled her little hand around her mother’s index finger. Latent skills didn’t materialize until the late teens, sometimes early twenties. Of course all parents found glimpses of things to come in their children and Kate was no different unless you counted that it was more obvious than usual. Living in close quarters for two trimester and almost one month with her two exceptionally empathetic relatives boosted the signals.
Having reinforced insights to Kate’s mood made her care easier than her three brothers who had the same advantage at weakened levels. Sandy and Sara both agreed it was due to the baby empathizing which compounded with their empathy. And Kate drew people to her like no other newborn. Strangers were enchanted at first site and eager to assist the sisters with bags, buggy and doors.
The antithesis to this was that Kate could interpret moods from her surroundings. And her mother worried that grownup emotions were far too dark, heavy and complex for such a young child to endure. Mommy and Auntie did their best to halt exchanges that weren’t about love, laughing and warmth.
Kate’s pudgy hand daintily pressed against her mother’s cheek.
“Something’s wrong.” Lots of things were wrong. For one, Kate was in Colorado and her brothers and father were in California and for two, everything else. But something new was wrong. Deep down in her bones her mother felt a sense of dread so profound and so definite that no amount of blocking could protect Kate from it.