First, it may help the readers of this blog to know a bit about my hero and heroine, Seth and Mina. Imagine them a little like Rocky Balboa and Adrian. At least, that’s how I sometimes imagined them. Seth is honest and kind and good to the core, but he’s a simple man who was raised in poverty. He’s physically powerful, but gentle. Expert at what he does, but not highly-educated. Mina is not as awkward as Rocky’s Adrian, but she is unassuming, and shy in the company of men.
Mina and Seth both witnessed the financial struggles of their parents and families. More than anything they fear poverty, and seek a safe, secure life—even if that means denying themselves love, desire, and friendship. Nothing can mean more to them than a warm place to sleep and food in their stomach.
So, shaped as they were by the struggles in their childhood, they are self-conscious of all they lack. Their lowly perceptions of themselves—Seth, as a man who lacks breeding, money and education, and Mina, as a woman whose worth is in being an efficient, economical homemaker—causes them to reason they are not worthy of love, and must endeavor only to find security. A belief that is entirely logical, but not at all true.
The advice I’d give Seth and Mina at the beginning of the book would fall on deaf ears, but here it is: If you’re lucky enough to find a person who is full of honor, who makes you smile, and who stirs your imagination into dreaming of a future that is more than just secure, more than just survival, then have faith in that relationship, even in the midst of all your practicality and fear. But neither of them would take that advice the day they meet in Bombay. They won’t be ready to believe that advice until they return to London.
The two of them almost lose each other in their determination to choose a safe, immediate option. There was an African proverb that kept coming to mind as I wrote Seth and Mina’s story: If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. Together, they are stronger than they are apart. That’s the advice I’d give Seth and Mina, but their journey into heeding that advice is what makes up their love story in Discovery of Desire.
Originally posted on HARLEQUIN JUNKIES, 2 September, 2016