I thought I would add a glimpse into the novella, Fated today. I have not had a chance to write another character interview at this point since we have been working diligently on the book. I didn't think you would mind. Besides, excerpts are always fun.
This one is a Torren scene. It is a longer than I usually post but I hope that you enjoy reading it. Let me know what you think. I always love to hear your thoughts and opinions.
Torren entered Tyré alone. His two men had died by Ghorgon’s hand.
In the bustling streets, he attracted scant notice. Little about the place had changed since his boyhood. Near the size of Phraile Highlae, Torren considered Tyré to have a more pleasing aesthetic. White-washed buildings gleamed where the late-day sun struck them. Flowers decorated shop fronts and window boxes of the homes. The contrast of bright colors against monochrome background enhanced the visual vitality of the city.
Torren snuck into an old bell tower on the south side of town. He climbed the long staircase. Settling in, he looked out across the white city and to the vast blue Nibiruin Sea at the city’s edge.
The few small fishing vessels docked in the harbor belied the town’s standing as the heart of trade between the three cities. Large boats were not needed. After the exile of the Jajing following the war, the Gods had forbidden voyages across the sea to their island. In return for such an agreement, the Gods ensured that the earth provided ample sustenance. Other than coastal fishing, clothing, spices, and various goods arrived and left over land.
From Torren’s vantage point, the rays of the fall sun alternately weathered and enhanced the hues. It gave him the impression of an artist’s canvas. Banners hung above bridges and walkways with the Tyré sigil—an Orca emerging from the sea, silhouetted against a blue agate-colored moon, representative of Orteh Huana. The scene brought back fond memories.
Torren had played at soldiers through these streets with his two closest friends, the Guardian’s nephew and niece—Colton and Marise. Although Torren had been born five summers before Colton, he thought of the boy and Marise as his younger siblings. They had, after all, grown up together in the palace. It had been a natural fit. Larrik, as Master Warrior of Tyre
, spent a great deal of time with the father of his
friends, Kamm. Their two families developed a close friendship. Torren enjoyed
the advantages of being thought of as kin to the Guardian’s family—and as an Androne. Imagine.
The hours Torren spent with Colton to teach him sword-play, gave his younger friend an advantage over other males of similar age. Torren prided himself in being the reason his “little brother” had begun warrior training a full two omakas, years, before requirement.
Even after the death of Larrik, Torren remained in the palace. His father had been a hero of the Jajing war and the family had been implored to stay. Torren’s mother consented. Shortly thereafter, Hayden, the Guardian of Tyré, filled his father’s position with Koutal, a decision Torren had questioned.
A brute of a Djen, Koutal was squat in stature, with a bald head, scars from war, and missing an eye. With his other, he leered at Torren’s mother. Koutal did not train the warriors so much as use them for his personal whipping posts. Fear, not respect, was the new Master Warrior’s mainstay, and he cared little for Torren.
Taunts of “washerwoman’s whelp” and “Guardian Pretender” flew from his lips whenever Torren was in earshot. It had been tolerable at first. Colton and Marise stood up for him and threatened to tattle to their Uncle Hayden. The insults transformed into jokes amongst the three youth. Then, everything changed. Colton deserted him to begin his formal training in Phraile Highlae.
Marise, still a child, drifted away from his company. For the first time in his life, Torren became an outsider in the only home he had ever known. He had to choose between remaining and facing the abuse alone or leaving.
Two winters have passed, but it seems a life time ago.
He never looked back. At first, his travels took him south to Phraile Highlae and then beyond to the caves of The Westnoch Mountains. There, he came upon a band of men, led by a great Djen and former Warrior of Phraile Highlae—Dekren.
He trained with the Rebels, rose in the ranks, and became Dekren’s most trusted soldier. The Rebellion became his new family. Together, he and Dekren devised a strategy to control the power of the Ortehs—one that evolved from the idea of saving Djenrye to ruling it.
Now, he hunted down a Guardian wife and child.
Hours ago, Torren had stood above the prone form of that woman’s savior—Ghorgon. The death of Torren’s men stung less with the image of Ghorgon lying grievously wounded at his feet. Before administering the final blow, Torren taunted the fallen warrior, “You have not saved her. I will find Carlynn in Tyré. She will die and the babe will be ours.”
The idea of executing an innocent sickened Torren. But, he had no choice. Bringing the Rebellion’s plans to fruition required the blood of a Guardian. For the sake of the cause, Torren would kill her, but not rip the unborn child from her womb. He would wait for the birth.
He turned away from the overlook. In his mind he ticked off the number of graochomae, blood/moon cycles, since the announcement of Carlynn’s saeni, carrying a child. Over eight…the time must be near.
He eased himself down on the floor and closed his eyes. He convinced himself it was safe to sleep. A bit of rest and he would enter the palace through one of the escape passageways—the one that would lead him straight to Carlynn’s room. The same room in which all honored guests are housed when visiting the palace. Thanks to the excursions with his former playmates, Torren knew the way.
Thanks for taking the time to read my scene and I hope to hear from you.