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May 10th, 2007

MADTEN's Mother's Day Contest is on NOW!

I am giving you all an extra chance since info posted around had bad dates. Here's my excerpt for the week. Just answer the questions at the bottom of my entry at MADTEN. Feel free to look at the excerpts from the others for a chance to win their books as well!


Vassal of El
by Gloria Oliver

Now they would whisk her away. Her days of toil and trouble were over. Homespun clothes would be replaced forever with fine robes. If she continued tripping over everything in sight, there would always be those there to catch her before she hit the floor. Her every need would be attended to. The girl he’d traveled with this while would soon be nothing more than a memory.

All three councilors stood up. “So, tell us, Aen,” Valerian prompted. “How is it you’ve been returned to us?” The eyes in the chiseled, handsome face stared into her own as he towered over her.

“Sir,” she said meekly. “It was my friend’s doing. He knew what the markings on my back meant and knew where I needed to go.”

“Friend?” Valerian stared questioningly at Rux. Then his gaze registered Torren’s presence in the background for the first time. “A grub?”

“What? Where?” The oldest of the councilors stared about in confusion until he followed Valerian’s gaze. The stooped councilor took a shaky step back. “Dom Rux, what is the meaning of this?”

Torren looked out over them, not at all surprised by their reaction.

“Please, gentlemen, calm down,” Rux pleaded. “He’s the one who brought the Vassal to us. Without him she wouldn’t be here. And it was on Aen’s request he was to remain until the council’s acceptance of her identity.” The ambassador’s wings quivered with agitation. “Surely this makes his presence here acceptable.”

The two older councilors slowly conceded the point, though they wouldn’t make direct eye contact with Torren. He wondered if they’d ever even seen a Lander up close before.

“And what exactly would make a Lander give the Chosen such uncharacteristic charity?” Valerian’s question was aimed directly at him. “Could it be you’re expecting monetary compensation, knowing the high worth we place on the Vassal?” His sarcasm was heavy.

“Valerian!” Rux stared from the councilor to his unusual guest and back again.

Torren felt his jaw tighten, his gaze not leaving the councilor’s face.

“Speak up,” Valerian taunted. “Have you nothing to say, Lander? Is the truth too obvious to be said?”

“Stop it!”

All eyes turned in amazement to stare at Larana as she interposed herself between the two men. “You, you shouldn’t do this. He’s not one of them. He’s one of you!”

Rux turned to meet Torren’s eyes, but Torren lowered his to the floor, his heart pounding. Was she guessing, or did she actually believe? Though he’d not said anything about it to her, he coldly realized the evidence had been there for her to make her own conclusions about the truth. He hadn’t counted on this.

“My dear,” Valerian said, stepping forward to sweep Larana into his arm and pull her away from Torren as if she were a silly child. “It’s true he has our coloring, but he has no wings. Only the Vassal grows no wings amongst the Chosen.” His hard gaze returned to Torren. “At most, he might be a half breed, begat by foul means. And as such, and having been raised amongst them, he is one of them.”

Larana seemed to almost wilt beside the councilor as he held her clutched in his arm, half covered by a wing, as if he were claiming her for his own. With a shiver, she forcibly pulled away, shaking her head. “You don’t understand,” she insisted looking at the others. “He is one of you.” She turned to face her friend. “Torren, tell them. Make them understand.”

He shook his head slowly. Let them think whatever they wanted. It was time for him to leave.

“Torren?” Rux was staring at him with sudden intensity. “As in the son of Lar?”


Question 1 - Larana is being referenced by the councilors by another name - what is it?

Question 2 - What do the councilors assume Torren is?

(ANSWER in the COMMENTS at MADTEN!)


Tags: ; ; ;
Gloria Oliver
Unveiling the Fantastic
www.gloriaoliver.com

Novels


JEWEL OF THE GODS

(2015) Fantasy

The King is Dead! Long Live the Undead King!


Excerpt:
"What are you implying?"

The magister glided forward and scrunched down beside him.

"That in order to bathe, you must first actually get into the bath."





INNER DEMONS

(2014) Urban Fantasy

It took everything from her, except revenge!


Excerpt:
The muscles in my right arm jerked from tension as I tried to make it move and it resisted. A shrill scream inside my head insisted I didn't want to do this. That if I did, there'd be no way to take it back. "I...I'm afraid."



THE PRICE OF MERCY

(2011) Young Adult – Fantasy

Which is worse…the monster without or within?


Excerpt:

Home—family—the two things he would never have, the two things forever denied him…because of her.

Anger welled inside him, the heat of it suffusing him to the core, gurgling with seething emotions the total opposite of the coolness splashing down from the fountain nearby. Before he realized what he was doing, Jarrin stepped inside the gazebo.




CROSS-EYED DRAGON TROUBLES
(2007) Young Adult – Fantasy
“Harry Potter meets Dragon Riders of Pern”

Excerpt:

“Do you need any help?” she asked. “Just tell me what you want me to do. If you prefer, I’m sure I can round up at least a few people to come over and give you a hand.”

Kel slowly shook his head. “It’s all right. Thanks anyway.” His voice lowered to where she almost couldn’t hear it. “This is all part of my punishment.’

She frowned, not understanding what he meant. “Punishment?”

Kel cocked his head in Clarence’s direction. In a flash, she understood. None of this was an accident. Clarence had landed there deliberately, hoping to make Kel pay for all he went through in the past month. She shook her head, not wanting to believe this, but what the dragon said next took any doubts right out of her head.



WILLING SACRIFICE
(2008) Young Adult – Fantasy
“To save the world she must DIE! Or must she?”

Excerpt:

Panic and fear filled with utter helplessness made her dizzy. She knew what would be done with her, she knew what they planned. But there was nothing she could do to stop any of it.

Sharp gasps echoed in her ears as she felt the room’s cold air caress the Eye.

“You were right. She is the one.”



IN THE SERVICE OF SAMURAI
(2002) Adult/YA – Japanese Fantasy Adventure
“The Last Samurai meets Pirates of the Caribbean”

Excerpt:

Laying the blade on the floor before him, Toshi parted his kimono until his stomach lay exposed. He tucked his sleeves beneath his legs to hold him upright if he should falter. Ignoring Asano, he took up the blade. His shoulder flared with pain and he tried not to flinch, as he grabbed the blade with both hands. He turned the wakizashi until its sharp point was aimed at his belly, the residence of his soul.



VASSAL OF EL
(2004) Adult/YA – Fantasy Mystery
“He tried to forget his past, but his past wouldn’t forget him”

Excerpt:

Torren took a step back a sudden shudder racking through him. It was as if he’d never left, as if the boy he’d been would be coming back-though the one who’d loved this room and all these things was long, long dead. That boy died when he’d watched his father’s blood pour forth from his mouth, the end of a sword protruding from his abdomen. That boy died when he survived while everyone else lay dead.

Info, sample chapters, and free reads at www.gloriaoliver.com

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