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From Orange, VA

Here's the opening of Orange, VA, a novel of political intrigue.


“It’s malignant,” Dr. Paula Truesdell informed definitively. Behind her, a raven-haired Asian-featured nurse dropped her chin to her chest and sighed, painfully. The double-paned window in one of the older buildings at the University of Virginia Medical Center rattled in its moldings against the wind where browned leaves danced in the air. “I’m very sorry.”

A brilliant red northern cardinal, perched in the tree outside, sang a high-pitched whistle, “Tear. Tear, psssss!”

The afflicted woman, Sally Taliaferro Bradley, took a deep breath and turned to her twin sister, Marjorie Taliaferro. Marjorie grimaced, and said nothing, but her heart felt as though it had been pierced by a dozen swords.

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