Tag Archives: excerpts

Sunday Snippet, July 18, 2021

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Since it’s July Camp NaNoWriMo and I’ll be working on Song and Shadow, I thought I’d kind of step back from posting from it for a bit and instead show you what led to writing it by introducing the adult Hierik in Song and Sword.

Skipping a few paragraphs from last week. Hierik’s interrogation was interrupted by a message that there was someone waiting for him in his chambers with an urgent message.

Pashevel lounged comfortably in a chair, waiting. He was slightly worried; he knew Hierik’s reputation, and his methods of interrogation. And he knew Dakkas’ temper, and silently prayed that his friend would stay calm, and that Hierik would respond to the jailer’s request for him to come to his quarters.

The door opened and the tall man entered, slamming it closed behind him. “What is the meaning of this?” he demanded. “You can’t just walk into a Judge’s chambers and…”  He broke off as the man got to his feet, laughing.

“Ah, Hierik. You haven’t changed.” 

“I know that laugh… Pashevel?”

Pashevel bowed. “How are you?”

“I am well, Prince. And yourself? What brings you to this place?”

“Please, no ‘Prince.’ Just Pashevel. We’re not in any kind of Court right now.”

“And it’s safer not to be royalty,” Hierik agreed. “I understand. So, what brings you here?”

Pashevel took a deep breath and sat down again. “How much do you know of what’s been going on?”

Pashevel: a simple Elven Bard — and the Crown Prince

Marlia: a Paladin of Arithen, the Elven God of Justice – seeking vengeance for the destruction of her village

Dakkas: heir to the Drow throne — if his father and elder half-brother don’t kill him first

Kashrya: raised among a tribe of nomadic Humans, she is unaware of her true heritage — or of the prophecy that made her mother an outcast

Their goal: build a bridge between the Elves and their outcast brethren, the Drow, reuniting them and undoing the damage caused in a time so far gone that history has become legend and legend has become myth.

But first, they have a problem to solve:  how do you stop a war that hasn’t started?

Find more great reading
at the Sunday Snippet group.

 

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Rainbow Snippet for 7-17-2021

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Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, bloggers, and readers to gather once a week and share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).  Check out all the other awesome snippets by clicking on the picture above.

More from Onyx Sun. The good news is that I finally finished entering the changes I made on paper. The bad news is that there are still giant loose ends to tie up. But I’m getting there. Slowly.

Picking up from last week.

“Don’t leave before I come see you in the morning,” Josul said as he dropped the two of them off at the Onyx Sun.  

“I was hoping to secure a cargo before we left,” Taliya replied. “So no worries there unless someone has loaded my ship and left me an advance and a contract. And since I’m really tired of mystery cargo I sincerely hope that no one has.”

 

As Taliya and Ayess boarded the ship she was nearly overwhelmed by a rush of emotions from it, a swirling mix of things that she couldn’t sort out: fear? horror? anguish? terror? guilt?  All of those seemed to be involved and she wished she could talk to the ghost and find out why. 

“Welcome aboard, Ayess. Let me give you a tour of the ship, and if you have any questions feel free to ask.”

 “May I ask…?” Ayess hesitated, not sure what ni-es boundaries were.

“Ask what?”

“You mentioned a ‘mystery cargo.’ Is it something real?”

“I’m not sure. The ship belonged to a smuggler before he was arrested and I bought it from a broker. A whole lot of people think there is still something on board but no one will tell me what it is, other than it’s rumored to be some sort of experimental weapon. And the ship has been gone over by the broker and at least two different law enforcement agencies and no one seems to have found anything. All I know for sure is that the ship’s scanners have an extended reach and that it’s a lot faster than it has any right to be.”

“And that is the danger that you face? People wanting a cargo that isn’t here?”

“That pretty well sums it up, but the ship has a new identity so it should be safer than it has been.”

 

 

 

 

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Sunday Snippet, July 11, 2021

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Since it’s July Camp NaNoWriMo and I’ll be working on Song and Shadow, I thought I’d kind of step back from posting from it for a bit and instead show you what led to writing it by introducing the adult Hierik in Song and Sword.

To set the scene: Marlia, a Paladin of Arithen, the Elven God of Justice has been arrested for murder. The “she” in the first paragraph is Lethea, the woman who runs the boarding house they are staying at.

Skipping a few paragraphs from last week. Dakkas and Kashrya are in Marlia’s jail cell with her, waiting for the arrival of the judge.

Another set of footsteps in the hallway set them all on edge, and a moment later a door opened and a tall gaunt man stepped in. He was wearing finely tailored clothes and had the air of someone who was accustomed to the finer things in life – and to getting what he wanted.

“Which one of you is the murderess?” he asked, his eyes flickering between Marlia and Kashrya.

“Neither of them.” Dakkas stood, placing himself between the man and the women. “I thought a judge was supposed to be impartial.”

“A judge is supposed to decide for himself if someone is guilty or innocent. And I always get the truth from my defendants. Now,” he looked past Dakkas, “which one of you is Marlia?”

“I am.” Marlia stood up and faced him. “But I am no murderer. I am a Paladin of Arithen, the God of Justice.”

“Indeed. Pleased to make your acquaintance, Paladin. Always such a sad day when a holy warrior loses their way and turns to savagery.” He looked at Dakkas and Kashrya. “The two of you will need to leave,” he said. “I need to question the Paladin.”

“No,” Dakkas said calmly. “I will not leave her alone with you.”

“Very well,” he shrugged. “You can stay, but do not interfere in what happens, or you too will be up on charges.”

“Don’t do anything to hurt her and I won’t interfere,” Dakkas replied, his stance easy but poised and alert.

The man paused, considering. “Is she your woman?” he asked.

Dakkas did not dare look at Marlia, knowing that if he did they would both burst into laughter. “No,” he replied. “But she my best friend’s Intended, and he and I have a blade between us.”

 

Pashevel: a simple Elven Bard — and the Crown Prince

Marlia: a Paladin of Arithen, the Elven God of Justice – seeking vengeance for the destruction of her village

Dakkas: heir to the Drow throne — if his father and elder half-brother don’t kill him first

Kashrya: raised among a tribe of nomadic Humans, she is unaware of her true heritage — or of the prophecy that made her mother an outcast

Their goal: build a bridge between the Elves and their outcast brethren, the Drow, reuniting them and undoing the damage caused in a time so far gone that history has become legend and legend has become myth.

But first, they have a problem to solve:  how do you stop a war that hasn’t started?

Find more great reading
at the Sunday Snippet group.

 

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Rainbow Snippet for 7-10-2021

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Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, bloggers, and readers to gather once a week and share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).  Check out all the other awesome snippets by clicking on the picture above.

More from Onyx Sun. The good news is that I finally finished entering the changes I made on paper. The bad news is that there are still giant loose ends to tie up. But I’m getting there. Slowly.

Picking up from last week.

As soon as the change of ownership had been acknowledged by the slave registry and Ayess was legally Taliya’s property she dropped the formal politeness she had been using to get through the transaction and turned to the Araxian.

“Ayess, I would like to apologize for the handler’s words. You are a person, not an ‘it’ and that was wrong of him.” She spoke to Ayess but the words were directed at Malinda as much as they were the Araxian.

Ayess shrugged. “You do not have any other word.”

“What is your word?”

“Ni. Ni-en for plural and ni-es for the possessive. And ni-en-es for plural possessive.”

“Thank you. I will try to use them instead of he, him, or his.”

As they left the building Ayess tilted ni-es head. “Why did you choose the male pronoun for me?”

Taliya flushed as she laughed at herself. “Because you’re taller than I am.”

Ayess joined her in her laughter. “I do not mind if you think of me as male or refer to me as one,” ni assured her. “I do not find it offensive. And, after all, I am taller than you are.”

 

 

 

 

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Sunday Snippet, July 4, 2021

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Since it’s July Camp NaNoWriMo and I’ll be working on Song and Shadow, I thought I’d kind of step back from posting from it for a bit and instead show you what led to writing it by introducing the adult Hierik in Song and Sword.

To set the scene: Marlia, a Paladin of Arithen, the Elven God of Justice has been arrested for murder. The “she” in the first paragraph is Lethea, the woman who runs the boarding house they are staying at.

“I have news,” she said as they moved to help her with her packages. “The judge from the capital has arrived. He’s going to go talk to your friend, and have the trial tomorrow morning.”

All three of them suddenly felt a cold clutch of fear. They had known it would be happening, but this made it real.

“Do you know who it is?” Pashevel asked.

“They said his name was Hierik. They said that he’s… cruel. An interrogator as well as a judge.”

Pashevel smiled. “Dakkas, I need you to do me a favor. I need you to go to the jail to see Marlia. Stay with her. Tell her not to mention my name.”

Dakkas frowned. “All right, but where will you be?”

“Getting ready to pay a visit to an old friend – but I don’t want him to recognize me.”

“Pash, if he’s been in this town more than an hour I’m sure he’s heard your name at the tavern.”

“Maybe,” Pashevel said. “But if he has, I doubt he’s said anything about knowing me.”

“You know him?”  Dakkas asked.

“We’ve met,” Pashevel replied.

“Did you part on good terms?” Dakkas asked, then shook his head. “Of course you did. Stupid question.”

 

Pashevel: a simple Elven Bard — and the Crown Prince

Marlia: a Paladin of Arithen, the Elven God of Justice – seeking vengeance for the destruction of her village

Dakkas: heir to the Drow throne — if his father and elder half-brother don’t kill him first

Kashrya: raised among a tribe of nomadic Humans, she is unaware of her true heritage — or of the prophecy that made her mother an outcast

Their goal: build a bridge between the Elves and their outcast brethren, the Drow, reuniting them and undoing the damage caused in a time so far gone that history has become legend and legend has become myth.

But first, they have a problem to solve:  how do you stop a war that hasn’t started?

Find more great reading
at the Sunday Snippet group.

 

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Rainbow Snippet for 7-3-2021

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Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, bloggers, and readers to gather once a week and share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).  Check out all the other awesome snippets by clicking on the picture above.

More from Onyx Sun. The good news is that I finally finished entering the changes I made on paper. The bad news is that there are still giant loose ends to tie up. But I’m getting there. Slowly.

The door opened as he finished speaking and Malinda advanced on him. “What did you call her?”

“Ayess called me by my name, as instructed,” Taliya replied, stepping between the two of them and holding the older woman’s gaze steadily. 

“In this house, owners are shown proper deference,” Malinda replied.

“Then let us go finish the ownership transfer and we will leave your house.” Taliya finally realized why she did not like Malinda: her attitude of superiority, especially toward non-humans, reminded her too much of Maureena.

 

 

 

 

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Sunday Snippet, June 27, 2021

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I’m posting from my current writing WiP, Song and Shadow, a prequel to Song and Sword. It’s a rough draft and I still don’t have an actual outline for it so it’s going to be a fun ride.  

Picking up from last week.

“Tradition demands that I choose and name a Traveling Companion.” The older nobles stepped back, leaving the ones closer to his age to the front and Hierik forced himself to look at them. “Who among you would Travel with me?”

For a moment no one moved but then Pashevel stepped forward. “It would be my honor, Your Highness, to accompany you on your travels, and for you to accompany me on mine.”

“The honor would be mine,” Hierik replied quietly. He raised his voice. “I have chosen, and I name Pashevel, son of Vellindrin, Crown Prince of Alur’va’sia, as my companion on my travels.”

As Hierik spoke, Pashevel joined him on the stage, completely at ease in front of the crowd.

“Thank you, Prince Hierik, for the opportunity to travel your lands with you and to get to know my counterpart in the Human Lands. I feel sorry for those who hesitated to respond to your offer, but not sorry enough to turn down the invitation.”

There was a ripple of nervous and embarrassed laughter as the assemblage tried to figure out if they were being insulted or if it was just an attempt to bring humor to the situation.

 

A bit more to finish this section as I’m going to be changing gears a bit next month.

 

“I cannot tell you how glad I am that that is over,” Hierik murmured as he closed the door behind them.

“You don’t have to,” Pashevel replied. “I can see it in your body. How long will it take you to get your things?”

“My backpack is in my rooms, ready to go. I would like to change into something more comfortable,” he tugged at the high neck of his brocaded tunic, “but that will only take a few minutes.”

“Then we can be on our way before sundown.”

Hierik nodded. “But there is no rush. I told you that the tradition has it that we leave in the morning.”

“And when did that tradition start?”

“With Kurzel, my eldest brother.”

Pashevel nodded. “And he never returned?”

“No, none of them have. How did you know?”

“By asking questions, listening to answers spoken and unspoken, and asking more questions. Did anyone see him leave the castle?”

“Of course not. He left before sunup the next day.”

“Not even the gate guards?”

Hierik stopped and turned to face him. “What are you saying?”

“I’m not saying anything, Your Highness. Merely asking questions and listening for answers.”

“Spoken and unspoken?”

Pashevel inclined his head in agreement and Hierik shuddered. “Let’s get out of here.”

 

 

Find more great reading
at the Sunday Snippet group.

 

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Rainbow Snippet for 6-26-2021

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Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, bloggers, and readers to gather once a week and share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).  Check out all the other awesome snippets by clicking on the picture above.

More from Onyx Sun. The good news is that I finally finished entering the changes I made on paper. The bad news is that there are still giant loose ends to tie up. But I’m getting there. Slowly.

Picking up from last week, which had Ayess describing the attack on the exploration team.

The man flushed. “I mean they don’t have male or female parts. The boss can explain it better.”

“And I’m sure Ayess could explain it even better than she can,” Taliya replied coolly. She waited until the others had been escorted from the room and when the door closed she turned to Ayess, wanting to apologize for the man’s behavior. 

Ayess had risen, and she took a moment to get her first look at the rest of the Araxian. Powerful legs surrounded by a skirt of knee-length tentacles terminated in large flat webbed feet, and her head was just above mid-chest, but it was the look of humor in the large dark eyes and at the barest hint of a smile at the corner of the reptilian mouth that caught her attention, and she tilted her head curiously.

“I have never seen anyone put them in their place so well. Thank you, M… Taliya.”

The door opened as he finished speaking and Malinda advanced on him. “What did you call her?”

 

 

 

 

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Sunday Snippet, June 20, 2021

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I’m posting from my current writing WiP, Song and Shadow, a prequel to Song and Sword. It’s a rough draft and I still don’t have an actual outline for it so it’s going to be a fun ride.  

Picking up from last week.

“I don’t know how to step on toes,” Hierik said softly. “I’ve spent my whole life not doing it.”

“For now,” Pashevel replied, “simply greet your guests one by one and thank them for coming. They aren’t expecting you do anything like that, so that should be enough to throw them off balance and keep them guessing.”

Hierik drew a deep uncertain breath and nodded, managing a weak smile.

“I’ll be with you,” Pashevel assured him, putting a hand on his shoulder as he turned toward the nobles, all of whom were ignoring them while at the same time trying to watch them, curious about this strange Crown Prince of the Elves as the rumors flitted throughout the ballroom.

 

Find more great reading
at the Sunday Snippet group.

 

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Rainbow Snippet for 6-19-2021

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Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, bloggers, and readers to gather once a week and share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).  Check out all the other awesome snippets by clicking on the picture above.

More from Onyx Sun. The good news is that I finally finished entering the changes I made on paper. The bad news is that there are still giant loose ends to tie up. But I’m getting there. Slowly.

Picking up from last week, which had Ayess describing the attack on the exploration team.

“I will be taking Ayess,” Taliya said, nodding toward the Araxian. “You can take the others to their quarters.”

“Yes, Ma’am.” One began unlocking the wrist cuffs holding Nesha and Jondu to their tables.

“Do you want us to unchain it, too?” the other asked, nodding toward Ayess.

Taliya bit back her anger. “Yes, please,” she replied. “It would make it much easier to get him to my ship that way.”

“I suppose it would. But this one is an ‘it’ not a ‘he’ – its race doesn’t have sex,” he said as he undid the wrist cuffs.

“I’m sure they do,” Taliya replied. “Or else there wouldn’t be any new Araxians and the race would die out.”

 

 

 

 

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