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Well, blog regulars, I think this time - with your much appreciated help - I've nailed it. Thanks to everyone and especially Rick.
Jennie works opposite the abandoned Catholic cemetery at the Sycamore Public Library and first notices Charos while taking a shortcut home through the sprawling grounds. The darkly beautiful man seated in a wheelchair beside the grave covered in ruby red roses is rather hard to miss - as are the roses. While the grounds are overgrown with weeds and self-sown flowers, the roses are the jewels of the cemetery. Hidden behind ivy-covered bluestone walls, this deserted place appears so timeless and wildly beautiful she speculates that fairies could come and go here unnoticed by human kind. As the mysterious man is often beside the rosy grave site, she finally plucks up courage to introduce herself, but Charos shows little interest. However one 'man' always has time for her. During her daily - and nightly - treks, she stops to speak to the life-like statue of the Christ and sometimes receives guiding and uplifting 'inspirationals'.
Despite his initial coolness, Charos seems to warm when she shows interest in the many roses flourishing in mid-winter. He tells her they will never die only sleep through summer and return in winter 'when she is needed the most'. As they spend more time together, Jennie discovers that Charos is a force of nature, irresistable and dangerous, and soons falls under the spell of his fey charm. Although he remains an unpredictable mystery, Jennie feels he's the one person who understands her imaginative beliefs and sees her real worth.
Come late spring the winter roses and Charos disappear leaving her in despair. So begins Jennie's quest to discover the truth and to bring him back into her life. Only the magical winter roses will enable her to understand Charo's surreal world. And only the 'Man' Jennie needs the most can arm her with the wisdom and confidence she needs to win the love of the man who needs her the most and restore his soul so he can live and love again.
Winter Roses Never Die is a surreal ride into a world of paranormal relationships, mythical creatures and mystical Christianity. The story is complete at 95,000 words.
Thank you for your time and look forward to hearing from you.