Ghouls, ghosts, goblins, and a fair amount of superheroes are probably trick-or-treating around your neighborhoods tonight.
Costumes allow people to be seen differently. And that can have advantages in plotting an enemies-to-lovers romance like Turning Point.
At a charity costume party for schoolchildren, my two MCs from Turning Point, Brenna and Cassidy, spend as much time watching each other as they do the children. Both women act on a television series, so they’re in costumes for the event. They wear these around each other every day, but this Halloween they come to see each other differently.
Stagehands and cast members manned the booths, handing out bean bags and baseballs and fishing poles for carnival-style games. Props had been stacked into pyramids for several knockdown-type games.
There was face painting by the makeup crew and miniature pumpkin painting. Brenna took out a pile of Vordt statuettes with several baseballs, then slipped off to the side and sipped a soda while watching the happy melee. Sensing someone at her shoulder, she turned to find Cassidy. “Hi.” She scanned down the
still-costumed woman. “I think you can take off the boots.”
Cassidy shook her head. “It’s all right.” She carefully leaned against the tent pole. “Nice thing you have here.” She glanced away.
Following the other woman’s gaze, Brenna noticed Ryan at a booth fishing a prize from the murky Vortex pool. “The guys in Props are gods,” she responded. She leaned closer to Cassidy and pointed out Chelle passing out the stuffed animals and other toy prizes for winning at the games. “Look at all that stuff.”
Smiling, Cassidy pointed toward the apple-bobbing cauldron where a line of children waited their turn at the wet game. As they watched, a ten-year-old boy came up with a mouthful of apple. One of the volunteers offered him a towel and sent him with a ticket to Chelle’s booth to claim a prize. “Where are Thomas and James?”
“They’ll be here in about twenty minutes. Thomas had weight training, then he was going to drive them over.”
“I’d be white as a sheet letting them drive alone,” Cassidy admitted.
Smiling, Brenna made a show of patting her cheeks. “I use heavy makeup.”
A little girl rushed toward them. Brenna caught her before she could run into Cassidy. “Hi!” the girl enthused.
Brenna crouched to be at eye level. “Hello there. Having a good time?”
“The best!” The girl’s arms flung around her neck, and she felt the fluffiness of a stuffed toy on one cheek just as a wet kiss pressed against her other cheek. “Thank you!” the girl gushed before running off again.
Brenna put her hands to her face, hiding the heat, and nodded after the girl was gone. A hand moved softly across her back, and she dropped her hands hastily.
Cassidy observed, “These kids mean a lot to you.”
“Yes.” She glanced up nervously only to find comprehension. Inhaling, she stepped away. “Sorry.”
“Nothing to be sorry for.”
Their gazes met, and suddenly the noise around her muted to the borders of Brenna’s awareness. “All right,” she said, startling herself with her own voice.
Cassidy smiled slowly, holding Brenna’s gaze.