Sunday Excerpt 7-7-2013

It’s that time of the week again.  And since it’s Camp NaNoWriMo, the excerpt will be from my current project, which is Book 8 (sadly still lacking any other title) of the Academy of the Accord series.

There are a lot of characters in the series but I’ll try not to name dump too much.   Caristen is a wizard, and Kordelm is his Warder.  Torlew is another wizard – Caristen’s best friend. Vinadi is the Headmaster of the school and Marsden, his Warder, is the commander of the school’s garrison.   (I should probably just make a page for people to refer to — this is a long term project and it might be easier that way.  *adds that to my “to do” list*)

The scene:  Marsden and Vinadi have a pair of letters addressed to two instructors at the school, ordering them to take one of the cadets to a tower where he will be killed.  Caristen is attempting a spell to show them the person who wrote the letters.

(I know some of this is awkward — it’s a rough draft.  I’ll smooth it out in the edit.)

Caristen held the letters in front of him and spoke, softly at first, then with increasing authority as the spell seemed to stall.  The papers seemed to smoke around his fingers and Kordelm started to say something but Torlew touched his shoulder, shaking his head, and Kordelm subsided, but watched intently, worried about his wizard’s safety. 

The smoke grew thicker, swirling over the paper but not leaving the edges of it, and Caristen was sweating, shaking with the effort of forcing the spell.  He gave a final word of command and for a brief moment a figure appeared in the smoke:  he was in shadows and they got no more than a glimpse before the papers fell to ashes and Caristen collapsed back against the couch.

“Cair?”  There was fear in Kordelm’s voice as he reached for his wizard, and then Torlew was kneeling on the couch on Caristen’s other side, looking into his eyes, his own gaze anxious, and Kordelm turned frightened eyes to his friend, silently pleading for help and reassurance. 

Caristen was breathing hard and Torlew placed a hand on his chest and spoke softly and slowly his breathing slowed and his heart rate returned to normal. 

“I’m all right,” Caristen assured them.  “Just… He was heavily warded and I couldn’t break through.” 

Vinadi gave Marsden a worried frown.  “Those are strong wards if Cair couldn’t get a spell through them.”

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11 responses to “Sunday Excerpt 7-7-2013

  1. That’s a really interesting spell, I have never seen something like this before. It seems to have been really intense for Caristen.

    • solowytch

      Thanks. Caristen sort of specializes in truth-type spells, so they are usually effortless for him. He is also something of a powerhouse, so something that blocks his spell like that is worrisome.

  2. I’m interested in the dynamic between these characters—Warders and Wizards sounds fascinating. Is it a bodyguard relationship, or something deeper? Does Torlew have a Warder?

    • Wizards must have a warrior when they travel, for their own protection. In those cases, it is just a bodyguard relationship.

      But some warriors are True Warders — they have an instinct to protect wizards without thought tho their own lives. A wizard will turn to a Warder over even the best trained regular warrior. A Warder’s touch makes a wizard feel safe, secure, protected.

      Sometimes a wizard and Warder will “find” each other, and form a bond. At this point it goes beyond a bodyguard relationship — each will feel incomplete without the other, and, yes, those feelings do turn into physical intimacy, even between men who are not “lovers of men.” (I very much play with the continuum of sexuality in this series.)

      Yes, Torlew has a Warder. Wellhym is there, just not a participant in that snippet. The four of them — Kord, Cair, Tor, and Wel — are inseparable: find one of them, and you’ve likely found at least one of the others,if not all three.

  3. (And for the record, I currently hate Google Chrome — it keeps trying to change my identity.)

  4. Interesting spell. Hmm… someone is using some strong magic not to be caught. I’m intrigued to know why.

    • Ah, that’s no secret, really. They don’t want anyone (least of all Vinadi and company!) to know who they are because:
      1) they are acting outside the law
      2) they are acting outside the Accord
      3) they are planning to destroy the Accord and take over the known world

      Our heroes do have their work cut out for them.

  5. Wow. Great world-building and a tense snippet. Not much ‘smoothing out’ to do; not at all!

  6. siobhanmuir

    I think it’s an excellent rough draft – you do need to watch the use of “was” and the passive voice, but beyond that, you’ve got a great start, PT. 🙂

  7. Great snippet, there’s a nice bit of world building.
    Watch using “seemed” too often, it weakens the message and you have it twice in the first two sentences.
    Can’t wait to read more.

  8. sharonbuchbinder

    Nice world building and somewhat dark, which I like! 🙂

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