Hey everyone, hope you’re all well. 🙂
Thanks for the great response regarding the announcement of the prequel’s pre-order going live – one thing that always puts a smile on my face is the amount of support we get (‘we’ meaning fellow writers) when we announce new work, and this was no exception. 🙂
For all you readers out there, I thought I’d post an excerpt for the novelette – as I’ve said before, this tale takes place on the Elvayn home world, thousands of years before the events of Betrayal’s Shadow. It’s a little something I wrote about two years ago because I wanted readers to know who the Elvayn were. I won’t spoil Betrayal’s Shadow for anyone, but suffice it to say that the Elvayn are drastically different in the novel. 😉
Okay, I’ll shut up now; here’s the excerpt:
“What did you hope to gain?” Sorhael asked, settling herself onto the floor, limbs folding with a grace he had never ceased to admire. All Elvayn were beautiful to look upon, even those under the yoke of Mahaelal and his Wielders, but Sorhael seemed more deeply so.
He knew intimately the emotions that had sculpted her brows and the lines around her mouth, knew the light in her eyes as the empathy and resolve that had made her the best candidate for Conflict Singer. But more than that were aspects that Ordaefus knew only he could see — the way in which her form-accentuating seemed to brighten the inner radiance of her spirit; how she moved consciously and with simplistic beauty, placing her feet just so, moving her hands just so; her voice and the flavors of emotion in it; her smile. At that moment he wanted nothing more than to enfold her once again in his arms, but he was wise enough to realize that she might just expel him forcefully into one of the adjoining rooms.
A man had to know when not to do what he felt he had to do.
Ordaefus poured himself a measure of nectar. He brought the container to his lips, sipped, and held it so as not to spill as he lowered himself onto the floor before Sorhael.
“Truthfully, I hoped to draw him out,” he answered, setting down the container. He wielded a depression into the floor which firmly cradled the container without upsetting the energy-balance of the room. Meeting her eyes, he offered a shrug. “I took a chance.”
“I understand, Sorhael. I do. I placed myself in a dangerous situation, without protection.”
“And you didn’t inform me.” Her voice didn’t rise in volume, but emotion filled it. “If I had been informed of your destination, I would have been able to act if something happened. Why would you disallow me that?”
“To give him the chance to make a new choice,” he answered simply. “Or to hear again his opinion, his beliefs, and to try and understand them.” He broke eye contact and took up the container again, brought it up to his lips and paused. “And to stop him, if I could.” Voicing that intention sent a stab of pain through him. His hand trembled, nectar wetting his fingers. He sipped, set the container down once more. “I knew that he would have tried to hurt me by focusing on you, if you were there.”
“You know that,” she nodded, “yet you think he will treat you differently?”
Ordaefus didn’t have an answer for her, even though he wanted to be able to give her one. He didn’t know what his brother would do — too much time had passed since they had last seen each other, and Ordaefus knew Mahaelal now only through the tales that had spread since the Schism and reports from the cities as they had fallen.
He met Sorhael’s eyes again. “Perhaps it would be more honest of me to say that I hope to understand him. That I hope to be able to… reach him, somehow.”
A softness appeared on her face, her eyes crinkling at the corners. None of the Conflict Wielders under her command had ever seen that smile; she reserved it only for him. “That you are hopeful, Ordaefus, says much of who you are, and why I chose you for my mate.” She sighed. “But sometimes there comes a time when hope is dangerous, when it can no longer be allowed.” Sorhael reached out and laid a soft hand on shoulder. “Do you understand?”
He sighed. “I do.” He shook his head. “If this had been someone else, someone who had come to me for advice, I would be explaining to them just what you have been explaining to me.” He took up the container again, sipped the last of the nectar, set it back down. “I do know one thing for certain, though. We have to bring this conflict to an end. Before it engulfs us all.”
A Song of Sacrifice is now available to pre-order at Amazon, and also at iBooks, Kobo and Nook, so I hope you’ll check it out, as well as add the tale to your To-Be-Read Shelves on Goodreads! 🙂 The tale will be releasing on the 30th of September. 🙂
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Until next time,