Today I am posting the new prologue to my book. I won’t be posting a ton of excerpts as that might hinder me from publication in the long run, but I figure a few won’t hurt. Especially since it’s unlikely this prologue won’t change at all between now and my final version.
So here it is, I hope you all enjoy it. Feel free to leave comments with what you did like, and what you don’t. (P.S. Adrianna is the main character of this story.)
15 years ago…
For just one last moment Kei allowed himself to sink into this kiss. Brynn’s lips moved urgently beneath his own, their tiny daughter cuddled between them. If only this could last, he thought, if only he could show her all his hopes and fears and dreams with this kiss.
Grabbing hold of her arms he pushed her from him, feeling his heart break as he did so.
“You have to go,” Kei insisted, holding Brynn at arm’s length.
“I won’t leave you,” she cried. She rubbed the baby’s back soothingly as she tried to step closer to him once again, and Kei knew the gesture comforted her as much as their sweet daughter.
The edge of Tambrain, the village that had been their home, was filled with such scenes. Women and children cried as they embraced husbands and fathers, all their worldly possessions in bundles at their feet. Such animals as had survived the years of war were tethered nearby, ready to journey with the women into the unknown.
Kei wanted nothing more than to keep Brynn by his side. She was the only woman he had ever loved, and was as fine a wife as a man could hope for. He had no doubts she would fight fiercely at his side should he let her. But he knew she would have a better chance of survival if she left. King Dalen and the armies of Torryn were preparing for battle at first light.
“You must, my love. I could not bear it should anything happen to you. Dalen wants the Golden Ones as pet magicians, or he wants us dead.” Gently Kei stroked his wife’s cheek.
“Give me ‘Dri,” Kei said, reaching for his daughter. The bubbly toddler shifted easily from Brynn’s hip to her father’s arms.
“Daa,” she cooed, leaning forward to slobber a kiss onto his bearded jaw. She had her mother’s blue eyes and his own dark hair. She was the most precious thing in his entire life, and he knew that she would someday live in peace. He prayed he would be around to see it.
“Go horf?” she asked, her toddler eyes bright with excitement.
“Soon,” he told her, nuzzling his face into her soft tummy, causing her to squeal with laughter.
“Cam’s plan is the best chance we have,” He told Brynn, cuddling his daughter close. “Finna will take you and the others through the waterfall to Gretherain. Tambrain will be lost as surely as most of Broane has been, you can’t stay here.”
“Couldn’t you join Finna’s group of Golden Ones to protect our move? Ask Cam. Explain that we need you!” Brynn pleaded, her warm brown eyes begging him not to leave her.
Kei shook his head gently, regret coloring his tone, “I can’t sweet Brynn. You know I must lead the men. Family or no, I am a Golden One and it is my calling to protect our people.”
“Why could I not have been born with magic? Then I would be joining you this evening, not spending endless hours wondering what will become of you.”
“You must watch over our baby girl. She’ll need you in the coming years.”
“She’ll need you, too,” Brynn objected mulishly, stroking a loving hand over ‘Dri’s dark head. It was clear she was torn between staying with him or protecting their daughter. It was equally clear which would win.
Leaning forward, Kei kissed Brynn’s forehead, “If there’s any way I can come back to you, you know I will find it.”
Brynn nodded as she took her daughter once again, tears slipping down her face. Kei pulled her close, sheltering his wife and daughter within the safety of his arms. Searching for the calm beneath the turmoil of his emotions, Kei sought the source of his powers, the heart of his gift.
Drawing upon it, he let the magic flow from him into Brynn and ‘Dri. “May you both be sheltered from pain and despair, knowing only the best of the world.” The magic joined them, connected them from soul to soul, and then it was gone. “Go,” Kei whispered, “Go with my love.”
As Brynn backed away from him, shaking from the force of her sobs, Kei raised a hand to the sky. Flame shot from it, scorching the air above him as he shouted, “It is time! To me, men. We will give Dalen a fight he will never forget as we buy our families time to flee. Tonight we set the world on fire!”
Cheers exploded from the men, all were preparing to die and all hoped they would live. As the men of Broane swelled the ranks around him, Kei looked beyond them for one last glimpse of his wife and daughter. Brynn was walking swiftly away with the other women. Though he waited, she didn’t look back. ‘Dri watched him over Brynn’s shoulder, red-faced as she cried for her father.
Try as he might, Kei couldn’t keep his own tears from falling. “I love you, Adrianna,” he whispered into the dusk, “You’re in your mother’s hands now.”