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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The animals howled again, somewhere ahead and slightly to the left. The horses threw up their heads, neighing. He seized the opportunity and hauled hard on the reins, steering the horses in a wide circle to the right and away from the wolves – hopefully back towards where the road lay. There was nothing to do but trust the other teams would manage the same.

A man on a horse appeared alongside the wagon. Lyram opened his mouth to call out, and then the rider cut close to the wagon, a gleaming blade in his hand. The weapon came up, and then down. Lyram ducked, and leaned as far away as he could – not far enough.

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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 story of these characters, I typically do at least eight drafts and you can expect the final version to bear little resemblance.

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More about In the Company of the Dead

Wagon Ride

Lyram already crossed a prince, and 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, Ellaeva, the Battle Priestess of the death goddess, arrives unexpectedly. But she has not come to break the siege. Instead, she is in pursuit of a necromancer of the evil god of decay. When misfortune after misfortune befalls the beleaguered defenders, Lyram realises the necromancer 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 a necromancer. 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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