Friday, April 11, 2014

First Freebit from Acceptance

I am joining author Ginger Simson's Friday Freebits, six paragraphs from one of my published books or one I'm in the process of writing.

Below are six paragraphs from Acceptance, a story about two sisters, one with magical 'Talent', the other a null without Talent. Acceptance is from the Magic Aegis series, a Renaissance type world.
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The unexpected hospitality at that first stop forecast her trip. As she traveled further into Cygna, the less alarm she engendered. Like magic, she seemed expected. Hostlers waited and approached only after watching her loosen the saddle girth. They would then carefully remove Bother’s saddle, take the reins and lead both horses to the stable. Innkeepers welcomed Fudge. She knew her journey’s progress was reported by the damn Adepts communicating between themselves. Comments were made on her likeness to Captain Tyna. She smiled and made no comment such as: ‘Yeah, like salt and vinegar. Both sting in an open wound, but it all ends there.’

The covert side-glances at her unusual appearance never ended, but were at least, politely disguised. Word seemed to have spread about the tattoo, for she noticed people looking for it with appalling expectation as she removed her gloves.

Their fashion confounded her. She’d never seen a more conforming dress in a population. Men always wore a long coat, over a tunic, topping trews and long boots. Women wore the same style tunic top over a long skirt and slippers. Clothes varied in fabric and dark color, usually brown or gray, but always the same cut. Their only extravagance seemed jewelry, which inevitably consisted of rings, at least one on each finger, usually more. Sometimes a color patch appeared on a sleeve, mostly solid blue, but sometimes striped in blue and red. Other than that, she occasionally saw a necklace or broach decorating a citizen, but rarely. Decidedly no gold pierced any skin.

Used to anonymity and paying her own way, becoming the center of interest for so many made Kissre uneasy. A mercenary usually spawned fear and wariness; they seldom received any sort of privilege, especially on price. She did not imagine the eyes following her. They came to the roadside to watch her pass on the mountainous road to Sidih, the Cygnese capital.

Three days from Sidih, a small troop met her. From their manner, Kissre identified them as military men, not Talents. It hadn’t taken long to realize the colored sleeve patches indicated Talent, or to learn ‘nulls’ were non-Talents, like her. These three were soldiers, also like her. While they initially seemed wary of a woman, it wasn’t long before introductory talk of the road, the weather, and her trip turned to anecdotes of other journeys, then of funny, stupid or dangerous situations, their business precipitated. None of her company had ever fought outside Cygna, or even in anything other than border skirmishes. Her own tales of Pertelon, the Eastern Empire, the Doane Desert, and Kaereya openly delighted them. She knew they thought her a magnificent liar.

The sergeant, Tomel, and his two men were cheerful company. Tomel, noticing her guith on the roan, proclaimed himself a good tenor with a fondness for camp-side entertainment. Kissre played that evening. The small string instrument, with its deep voice, complimented her alto. Tomel proved himself as capable as he claimed, and the other men provided enthusiastic volume. Once they settled for the night, Kissre worked on the puzzle for the need of an escort—to insure her arrival or to protect the citizenry? Tyna must be desperate for her visit.
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  1. Very interesting concept...nulls and Talents. I definitely need to read more to learn about the differences. Great descriptions of the attire. I pictured it as I read. Thanks for being part of Friday Freebits today.

  2. I too could see their attire through your description and I'm certainly intrigued to read more. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Thanks Ginger and Taryn for your comments.