Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Book Excerpt: Thorn Changer Chapter Five Part Two

If you missed Part One, go ahead and follow the link. Today, I'm posting Chapter Five Part Two of Thorn Changer

If you want to see the copyright/disclaimer page, go to the Amazon page and click on the picture of Thorn Changer for the Look Inside option, and scroll up (this also gives you a chance to see the beautiful detail of the cover).

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Excerpt from Thorn Changer by Christy Reed 

The steward rubbed his chin as Skey finished speaking. He ran his eyes over her torn clothes. “Well, you certainly won’t do like that. But you know the songs Lady Sieku loves.” He snapped his fingers. “We’ll soon put all to rights,” he continued as a maid entered. “New clothes can be part of the pay. The rest, say two silver coins, plus dinner and a bed afterwards?”
Skey nodded. Nobles paid more, too. But then that was to be expected. After all, hadn’t the emperor paid her well until she was thrown in prison? “Deal. But wouldn’t you like a sample of my music first?” She smiled, “Free, of course.”
The steward smiled as well. “Yes, indeed. You’re rather sensible for a minstrel.”
Skey smiled to herself. Yes, she still remembered Zeino’s charm lessons. Too bad they hadn’t been able to get her out of the Tower. She strummed her harp gently. “What do you wish?”
The steward glanced at the great clock in the hall. “How about the… No, that’d never do… Maybe the ‘Song…,’ no, too long…”
Skey smiled. She knew just the song. “Would you like me to choose for you?”
He sighed, and nodded. “Very well,” he leaned back against the wall, “play something. Preferably not common.”
“Most certainly not. I only sing tales fitting of the ones attending at such grand occasions.” Her fingers glided over the strings, changing the tune to one richer and fuller:
“But a drop, but a tear,
But a second in a year.
But what things are revealed
In naught more than a tear.
A revealer of woe,
Cold as ice, and as snow.
What the heart longs to know
Not at all: such is woe.
A revealer of rage,
Of a war which you wage
Within your soul. On the page
Of your life: such is rage.
A revealer of fear,
Of the darkness creeping near,
Or of the flame that’ll sear
What it can: such is fear.
A revealer of love,
White and pure as the dove.
A tender mother’s gentle shove
From all harm, such is love.
But a drop, but a tear,
But a second in a year.
But what things are revealed
In naught more than a tear.”
As the last notes faded, the steward was silent. She studied the strings. Didn’t he like it? There was no way he couldn’t have. Hadn’t she spent almost four years playing for Emperor Rokiye?
“Well,” he said slowly. “I’ve never heard anything like it. What skill, what grace, what beauty.” Skey looked up. He stared at her. “Lady Sieku will be pleased.” Something clattered in the hall. He shook his head. “Now, then, back to business. What would your name happen to be?”
Skey froze a moment. Should she tell her name, with Cinote looking for her? “I call myself Seili.” She stood up. “Shall I go prepare myself for the party?”
“Oh, yes.” He waved to the maid still standing there. “You’d best go right away. I believe we’ve some clothes that’d fit you.” He turned to the maid. “Take her to the tailor. Make sure she’s ready in thirty minutes.”
He looked back at Skey. “She’ll take care of you. I’ll see you afterward, to give you the money. Forgive me for my rudeness, but I really must go to greet my lady’s guests.”
Skey smiled. Those silver coins would come in handy if she ended up taking a ship to Mekai or Friiakan. And maybe there would be more… “Certainly, Lord Steward.”

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That's the end of Chapter Five Part Two. I hope you enjoyed it. For right now, Thorn Changer is available exclusively on Amazon. Feel free to share this excerpt, just please include all text between the asterisks (* * *), as well as a link to Thorn Changer's Amazon page. This will give your viewers a link to where they can purchase Thorn Changer if they're interested. Thanks.

Chapter Five Part Three will be available tomorrow.

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