So we're one week past the beginning of NaNoWriMo 2010. I hope everyone's project is moving along. My current count as of 12:00 noon EST today is 13,000. I hope to be at 15,000 by the end of the day.
Here comes your daily excerpt. Enjoy and continued writing success through November.
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The Shattered Darkness
Chapter 5 excerpt
“Valence, wait!” Eris cried, though she doubted he heard it. The young teen lashed the reins and forced her horse next to his. “Please, where are you going?” She wanted to reach for his sleeve, but he did not so much as look at her. Her brother kept his eyes and expression firm ahead. If she did chance grabbing onto him, her fourteen-year-old, thin body would be pulled from the saddle. She sucked quick breaths, formed a plan and kicked at the horse. The black mare snorted and thrust a pace or two ahead of Valence.
She finally drew his attention as she looked back and he sneered. His horse dodged left and right to his pulls, but she kept her speed and matched his advance to pass her. She flicked the reins again to bring her mare a few paces ahead, and yanked the bridle harshly to spin. The sable horse reared and Valence spun off course, his mare frightened to collide. His mare tumbled, a painful neigh pushing from her as she landed awkwardly.
Valence scrambled on his knees and held Timat by the neck.
“What are you doing, Eris? Stupid girl!”
She hopped off her horse and doubled over next to Timat, recovering breaths as she placed a hand on its twisted fetlock. Harsh winds growled at them and Timat whinnied like a weak colt.
“Why are you following me?”
“Why are you walking away from your family again?”
“There is no again.” He shoved Eris aside with his body and tended to Timat’s injury. “I obviously was not welcome back to start. I was an idiot for thinking otherwise.”
“Dad is confused, Valence,” she said. “He has been told many things by the Consulate and those other advisors that he can’t think straight.”
“He seemed to be thinking just fine when he confronted me like that.”
“He hasn’t been sleeping is all. Please believe me, he wants you back and he’s said he doesn’t care about the incident. He would rather hear it from you than be told what to think about his own son.” She was crying now and smudging her tears away with her arm. “No one’s perfect and he’s ready to accept that.”
Valence finished wrapping Timat’s fetlock as best he could and pulled the mare up slowly. He moved his bags from where they hung to the saddle. “You are.”
Eris did not say a word and the tears returned.
“You don’t think you’re perfect?” He tightened the last strap and wrapped it through the supporting ties.
“I’m learning to control it.”
“Not as quickly as the Consulate’s asked, right? So why is your judgment on having powers too great for your age is not on the same standard. If anything we ever learned in school was remotely true, you should be the one walking away. But no.” He shoved her away again and pushed the sable mare aside. “You’re just Eris. They say, ‘If Valence could kill a Lunata brother, maybe they could prevent you from becoming like me.’”
“It’s not like that.” She grabbed onto his arm one last time, hoping he might have a shred of respect left for himself. “You can walk away from them. Fine. They might not believe you, but you would walk away from me? I have told them what you wanted me to tell, but not because I was scared. It’s because I believe something bad really did happen at Thenar. Something made you—” She choked on the last part of her words.
“Kill Irien,” Valence said.
He pulled Timat gently and waited for her to test the strength of the injury. The mare hobbled for the first steps, the hoof barely touching the ground, and then managed to walk on it.
The wind tore at his back, but Eris watched him go.
“I’m sorry.” Valence met her eyes a last time, and said, “but your sympathy alone is not enough for me anymore.”
Peace and Writing Love,