AUTHOR: Michelle Dennis
On the brink of her twenty-first birthday, Abbie Bennet is finally living the well-balanced life she’s worked hard for. She’s a secretary in a medical center, sharing a house in the suburbs with a friend she went to high-school with and she goes to church on Sundays with her family. She spends her spare time reading romance novels and painting pictures of the places she wants to travel to; at least within the pages of her beloved books. Abbie’s life is uncomplicated, that is, until she ventures away from her comfort zone to join her friends at a local bar.
Set in Perth, 1994 this is a story of love, loss and learning to push aside the immobilizing fear of abandonment in order to find true happiness. Infinite Completion looks at the ways in which events during our childhood shape the way we react to situations and guide our decisions in our adult life. My characters are based on real people and some of the events in this story are based true experiences. Abbie Bennett is a character which many women of all ages will relate to on some level, and Infinite Completion is aimed at any reader who has experienced love and broken relationships – male or female.
When Abbie is dragged out onto the dance floor and becomes face to face with Valentine, her intuition is less than impressed, but her heart leaps forward and forgets just how hard it’s been for her to become ‘balanced’. Just like Alice in Wonderland, Abbie stumbles head first down into the rabbit hole and her whole world is turned upside down.
Valentine is the hunky lead singer of a pub band, with dark brooding eyes. He's intriguing and charming, but he rides a motorbike and has recently separated from his wife and seven year old son – he’s complicated and everything her mother warned her about.
‘Um, excuse me!’ I say as loudly as possible over the thumping of the music. He doesn’t seem to hear me. I touch him on the shoulder lightly. His skin is hot through the dampness of his t-shirt. I pull my hand back quickly as he turns.
I must look startled.
He smirks and shows his perfect white teeth. ‘It’s okay, I don’t bite.’
I step back a little and he moves toward me.
He bends toward my ear. ‘Do you wanna dance?’ he says loudly.
Instinctively, I move back again, bumping up against another girl. ‘Oh, um, no thanks. Your friend said you may have a business card?’
He lifts an eyebrow and continues standing way too close. He looks a little confused. I assume he doesn’t get turned down very often.
He leans toward me again and says, ‘You might like it.’ I feel my cheeks burn and when I glance at him as I move away, I notice him looking at my neck.
Stepping back, I clear my throat to make sure my voice works and shout over the music, ‘I don’t think so.’
He moves closer again and I feel my heart jolt. ‘You looked like you were enjoying yourself before.’ He’s grinning and looking me over. ‘I promise to be gentle.’
‘I, well, no thanks, I’ve had enough for one night.’ Did I just say that? I sound like my mother.
‘Okay,’ he shrugs, ‘your call.’ He glances around and leans against the bar, his shirt stretching across his chest. ‘What can I do for you?’
I must look a little confused or dazed, or something. I’m trying to place his very slight accent. Irish? But, he looks Greek. I gulp and try to sound calm. ‘My friends and I would like to book your band for a party.’ A smile plays on his lips and I can see he’s watching my mouth as I speak.
‘Sure, but I don’t have any business cards.’ He turns away from me to ask the attractive girl behind the bar something and she quickly hands him a pen. I notice the gleam in her eye and feel an unexpected pang of jealously. Then he writes on a napkin and hands it to me. ‘Here’s my number.’
‘Er thanks...’ This is my comeback. Absolutely no grace and now he probably thinks he’s made my heart flutter.
I push my way through the crowd and back to the safety of my friends. Shoving the napkin into Ethan’s shirt pocket I try to look unflustered, there’s no way I’m calling this guy.
The remainder of the evening is spent hiding in the shadows beside Ethan and trying very hard not to watch the singer. He flirts with a blonde woman from the stage and she’s probably going to share his bed tonight. Why should I care? This is what guys like him do. And I’m beginning to feel like a stalker!
After I begin to complain about being tired and having to get up early for work, everyone agrees to call it a night. It’s been a strange encounter for me with the “real” world and I’m none too happy about the whole affair. There’s a solid reason why I don’t do the pub scene; it’s called being sensible. And speaking of being sensible, I should probably read a little of, Room With a View, before bed, but I don’t really feel like Lucy and Aunt Charlotte – not tonight. I can’t get the vision of the singer out of my mind.
I know I’m being naive about him and as I climb into bed alone, I convince myself he wasn’t flirting with me. Guys like him are not interested in girls like me, it’s that simple.
I struggle through the following week. I find myself imagining the singer on every page I read and on Friday morning I meet Sarah for a coffee. Maybe she can talk some reason into me, now there’s no alcohol involved.
‘I want to go back and see him tonight,’ I say to her.
‘Really? Abbie Bennet wants to go to a pub!? Ha, well you’re smitten aren’t you?’ she laughs, then straightens her face and adds, ‘So come with me tonight then.’
‘I promised Dad I would go fishing with him... what do I do?’
‘Look, seriously Abbs, forget about the guy, he’s not your type. He’s in a band for God’s sake... he probably has plenty of girls,’ Sarah says, with that “keep-your-wits-about-you” look. She’s beautiful; and under that blonde hair and wicked smile, she’s much more intelligent than me – especially concerning the opposite sex.
‘What about Phillip?’
‘He’s different.’ Sarah grins like a kid on Christmas morning. I really don’t want to know.
‘I can’t stop thinking about him,’ I sigh.
‘Oh, Abbs,’ she sighs too.
This is no help at all.
Michelle Dennis lives in Perth, Western Australia; she has always loved reading and in the past few years this love has expanded into creating her own written words and worlds.
Michelle has a love of medieval and fantasy creatures, and her first book, Wolfbaene, revolved around this theme and brought the world of knights, castles and dragons to children around the world.
Michelle is a devoted wife and mother, and fits her writing schedule in around her busy lifestyle. She is currently working on a sequel to Wolfbaene, and when she's not in the world of dragons and other mythical beings, she can be found listening attentively to the other characters in her head, who are shouting for her attention because they want their own stories to be told.
Michelle shares her home with a very mature Dachshund named Phoebe Rose, a whole pile of cats who are under the impression they are the owners of Michelle's home, and one small rabbit who is under the impression he's a cat.