I'm starting to get excited about TOPAZ again. Maybe that's not the right way to phrase it. I mean, I've always found the story exciting and I don't think I've written any boring parts, but there are always some scenes in a book that are more fun to write than others. I'm about to plunge headfirst into some awesome ones.

I recently posted Chapter 20 on the WD forums for some feedback. I'd thought it was a "breather" chapter, but my readers have informed me that, no, it's not. Ha. They don't know what's coming. There's lots of nasty stuff heading Faith's way, and some really good stuff too: for one, her wings will be regenerating. I don't regret writing in their destruction, but her wings really are what makes Faith special, so I'll be happy when they're completely regrown (and so will my readers on the forums, I bet).

At lunch yesterday I wrote out the basic sequence of events from now until the end of the book. I've had the ending planned out for awhile so it's very satisfying to see how it's all going to come together. And to see that the ending I want will still work. Yay!

Here's a snippet from Chapter 21.

I screamed.

Jason burst out of the bathroom, dripping water all over the carpet, his eyes wild. “What is it? Are you—”

I turned to him, tears glistening in my eyes. A tremulous smile danced across my lips. “My wings, Jason. They’re back. They look like crap—” I giggled wetly. “But, oh my God, they’re back!” With the last word, I shot toward him, laughing.

He caught my insignificant weight against his chest, my infectious smile transferring to his face. With a whoop, he spun me around. More laughter burst out of me like an uncaged bird.

His eyes twinkled as he put me back on the ground. “Let’s see.”

“They’re not pretty,” I warned. But I turned so he could have a look.

They weren’t fully formed, not yet. The two appendages on my back were little more than sacs of skin and cartilage, vaguely wing-shaped. The muscles and nerves in the wings hadn’t completed their regeneration, so I couldn’t do more than flutter them against my back. They were small, maybe a third of their former size, reaching to just past my buttocks. The skin of my back itched like crazy. The muscles ached with the strain of being used again after so many days dormant.

I loved every minute of it.

Jason grabbed one of them and extended it to have a look. The pressure of his hand felt like a finger poking at your cheek after the dentist froze your mouth.

“How are you feeling?” he asked, moving the wing around.

“A little sore,” I admitted. My voice sounded chirpy, even to my ears.

Jason chuckled. “I wish I could have Malcolm check you over, make sure everything’s coming in all right.”

“Have faith.” He released my wing and I turned. Pushing up on my tiptoes, I brushed my lips against his. My hands drifted over his bare chest and I realized he was as naked as I. Liquid heat shivered through me.

He arched a brow, then lifted me suddenly. “Thank you. I believe I will.”

I smacked a hand against his pectoral and giggled—a giggle that turned into a shriek as he spun and fell backwards onto the bed, me plastered on top of him.

And then I couldn’t do anything else but feel.