Welcome to the Monday Morsel feature, where I share short excerpts from the first draft of whatever I’m working on – currently my adult epic fantasy, In the Company of the Dead.
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‘Jump to!’ Lyram hefted the bridge as the last of it slid off the support timber. On the far side of the moat, lit by the torches abandoned along the water’s edge, riders burst out of the night. Thwarted by the water, they nocked arrows and fired straight at them. They shuffled into the barbican, and Ellaeva followed, her murmured prayer faltering a moment. As Lyram jogged down the tunnel, still carrying the bridge with the two soldiers, she swung the gate shut.
In the last of the dying light, the lean, black shadow of an arrow sliced across the threshold.
The bridge fell from his hands.
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Thanks for dropping by! Don’t forget, this is a first draft, and as such won’t be perfect – while the bones of the story are there, enough to give you a glimpse into the tale of these characters, I typically do at least eight drafts so you can expect the final version to bear little resemblance to what I post here.
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More about In the Company of the Dead
Lyram already crossed a prince – now he finds himself on the brink of crossing a god.Son of a duke and second in line for the throne, Lyram is exiled to a lonely castle after assaulting the crown prince. When a hostile army arrives to besiege the castle, he believes the prince wants him removed – permanently.
As though answering their prayers, the Battle Priestess of the death goddess, arrives unexpectedly. But she has not come to break the siege. Instead, she’s pursuing a priest of the evil god of decay. When misfortune after misfortune befalls the beleaguered defenders, Lyram realises the priest is hidden within the walls, sabotaging the very defence.
Against the backdrop of clashing gods, Lyram must fight to save himself from the political machinations of his prince, and the dread plans of an evil priest. But as the siege lengthens, he realises the greatest threat may come from another quarter — a woman sworn body and soul to a god tempts him to pay a terrible price.
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