Member Monday: An Excerpt from Argentine Assignment by Chloe Winston

Welcome back to Member Monday. Today we feature an excerpt from Argentine Assignment, Chloe Winston’s latest book. Here’s a little more about Chloe.

Chloe Ryan Winston 001Chloe Ryan Winston was born on a ranch in eastern Oregon, graduated from Marylhurst University, and earned a master’s degree at Idaho State University.  She lived in Ashland, Oregon, which is featured in her writing, as well as Mexico, and has traveled extensively to fifty-eight countries.  Ms. Winston has contributed to several blogs, and as a travel writer to publications including The Los Angeles Times, International Travel News, and Mature Lifestyles.  She has been a cruise destination lecturer as well as a high school teacher, counselor, and administrator. Chloe will be signing copies of Argentine Assignment at Barnes and Noble on October 24 at 1 p.m.

An Excerpt from Argentine Assignment

by Chloe Winston

The plane’s engines were already rumbling as we scrambled up the narrow, wobbling steps as though the devil himself could have been right on our heels.  I didn’t dare look back.  I whispered, “Knee, don’t fail me now!”  It wouldn’t do for that old sledding accident to kick up a fuss.

A dim light at the top told me the door was ajar, perhaps we could squeeze through that opening. Was it left open for us? Who was on the other side? Were we leaving the frying pan for a fire?  I tripped, my dicey knee buckling a little, and I grabbed the skinny rail to keep from falling.  One of my fingernails ripped.  A brisk gust of wind tore the scarf off my head.  I glanced down. 

The curly girlish wig that I’d put on Jaime’s head was now askew. I yanked one reluctant hand off the rail to reach over and straighten it.  I wanted him to look like a girl until I found out what was going to happen after we boarded the plane. And perhaps should keep him looking like a girl until I handed him over to Derry in Mexico.

My hurried movement threw us both off balance for a moment.  I feared we would fall, and I took a quick breath. Just a few more steps. The door opened a fraction wider, showing a slender hand extended to us.  I shoved the boy inside just as the airplane’s engine strummed more deeply in an initial readying for takeoff.  As I shoved him, I again lost my footing, falling to my knees. A painful slip.  Our helper giggled—a strange reaction I thought, but at least a friendly sound. We probably did look funny…entering a plane this way rather than the more usual collapsing corridor.  I got to my feet, losing sight of Jaime for a moment. Then the attendant slammed the door behind me, swinging the lock into place.

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