I’m all twitterpated about the Hydra Summer Bash coming up on July 16-17, when The Fall of Onagros, Book 1 of Sage, will be one of thirty books free on Kindle.
Here’s an excerpt from it, for your tasting pleasure.
Karol was the kinninger (ruler) of Layounna, until her consort sent armed men (Swords) to murder her and her heart-husband, Cameron. Cameron gave his life holding them at bay so she could escape. She has taken refuge with an old wisewoman.
The Fall of Onagros – Excerpt
Karol Hears the News
by Marian Allen
Moder said, “There’s news from the capital today.”
“What is that to me?”
“It seems you were right, Cinnie beren Moder. The Kinninger is dead. And her sister’s put away.”
“Is that her name? Karol never thought of that, did she, the day the men were hunting for her? Took to her heels, and forgot that her sister stood behind her.”
Karol was stung by the justice of this reproof, and the impertinence. “She had other considerations – no doubt. How dare you judge her?”
Moder Zglaria shrugged.
After a moment’s silence, Karol said, “What other news of… of her sister?”
“They say she isn’t dead, just locked away somewhere. They say she renounced the throne.”
Karol’s voice was bleak. “Landry Oliva has her, then.”
“No, they say she put herself into a Waystation. What do you think?”
“It could be so. Power frightened her.”
“Maybe she knew her limits. Maybe she knew her strengths. Still….” Moder shrugged again, “she could hardly have done worse than Karol, could she, now?”
Karol met the old woman’s eyes, then looked away. “Not in the end. Karol did her best. She would have done better, in time. She loosened her grasp, for just a little while. She left her charge in someone else’s care, and turned her back. And it was gone.”
“Well…better people have done worse, I suppose. Her sister’s safe, at any rate, and they say Karol left no heirs. The House of Onagros is dissolved. Landry Oliva’s declared himself our Kinninger under the lion flag of the House of Sarpa. We’re all invited to rejoice.”
Karol felt her face swelling with outraged blood. Why such fury? she asked herself. She knew, when the Swords drew on her, that Landry would wear her crown; at least, had plotted for it. But it hadn’t been real. Nothing had been real but Cameron.
What a fool she had been! She felt less anger and contempt for Landry than for herself. She had betrayed her House, and the country, and Cameron; she had placed her love above her honor and she had murdered both.
~ * ~
If you just can’t wait, you can read the prologue and first chapter of The Fall of Onagros here.
A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: A character learns that someone they (singular they) hate has something the character didn’t care about before.