Here is the prologue of my latest achievement: Eternal Night.
This book is about a young girl called Ruby Faye, living out her strange life, living in a house in the woods, and going to high school like any other girl.
But there's a twist. Ruby is an orphan, or so she thinks. Then one day she thrown into the whirlpool of things beyond her wildest dreams. She discovers a dimention called Dravion, and she soon comes to realise that this crumbling civilisation is holding onto one thread; her.
A cold stake of pain held fast in the gutteral cry that rent the air. Flaz's rich red hair was a knotted wet lump hanging over her shoulder, sweaty locks of her fringe clinging to her the moist warm skin of her temples. She took another tight breath, and, neck taut as a stretched balloon, she screamed with agony. Her face was as white as ivory bone, but her cheeks were flushed red.
“Keep going, my dear,” A voice came as silky and musical as winters first day, crisp as morning frost, soft as honey. Cold fingers gripped her tight palms.
She tossed her head back and her legs tremored, and she felt too weak to hold them up any longer. A short woman, who looked as tiny and young as a child, held her side and stared with warm, inviting eyes. She held one foot with one hand, and cradled Flaz's head with the other. Again the long, skin-crawling outcry tabbed the silence.
The moon was at its highest point in the sky, washing the birth scene with white, cold light. It almost seemed to calm everything in its pooling wake, and soften the cries that seemed to echo itself for hours onwards, and greet the new life with a beaming bright smile. It wasn't many minutes off midnight, but still Flaz lay, wrenched with anguish, parried on about pushing harder. She just wanted to close her eyes and sleep, sleep the night away, and when the new dawn greeted her face, she could look into her baby's supple face, and see her own, and Luke's, face reflected.
Tania, the changeling maid, used a soft damp cloth to wipe Flaz's forehead and cheek. Then finally, as she gave one last thread of energy, the second maid held out a warm towel as the curled up shape of a baby fell out to the world. Kuni quickly rubbed it down, getting the blood flowing fast, and the skin turning a cosy pink. She patted its back, and as the tiny, squalling baby gaped its first breath, she grinned to Flaz and passed the bundle of towel and young.
“Its a beautiful girl!” She said quietly, nodding congratulations to Luke, who's eyes glittered with pride, love, and respect for the new life delivered to Behir village.
Flaz hugged the wet, confused infant to her breast, then kissed her gently on the forehead and cradled her in rocking arms. She stared into her baby's eyes, which were a strong emerald green, like her own. The little girl stuck her fingers in her mouth, and through her line-thin
lips, Flaz saw a her tongue glisten moist in the moonlight.
Luke helped his wife stand, and holding her back, he carried her tired feet back to the carriage, taking a flask of water and crust of nutbread from Tania before climbing in beside her. The seat was plush and velvet, and Flaz leaned against it with all of her weight, just holding her baby tight, not taking her gaze away for one moment. She wanted to remember that bubbly smile, the dimpled cheeks, small mop of red hair on her soft head. For as long as she would have this
child, she wanted to bask in her beauty,
“She's amazing.” Luke said, leaning in to kiss Flaz, then the girl.
Flaz stroked his black, spiked hair, and hugged both husband and daughter close to herself. She never wanted to lose them, but the time would come, when she would have to let go. As much as she hated to admit it, it was for their own safety. The baby that reached out her fingers to touch her mother now in her arms would be soon taken away, away from the danger of war and strife, where she could live a happy, normal life. She was like a fish on a hook; if she stayed any longer, her life would be depending on a thin thread, and she would soon suffocate. Very soon the time would come for her to be released back into the calm ocean tide once more.
She unrolled the waterskin flask cap, then pressed the nib into her mouth and sucked as strong as her weak muscles could bare to. When her blunt thirst had been whet, she handed it back to Luke, who took his own share, then settled it on his lap and handed her the nutbread.
“You need to keep your strength up,” He said.
She took a small hunk and chewed on the edge thoughtfully, her fingers threading through her baby's hair. “What should we call her?”
“Well, your name means Sister of Fire. Your mother was Maria, Water of Life.”
An idea entered Flaz's head, and as it floated through her consciousness, it ignited, and the name bloomed right before her. “Sarén. Goddess of Earth and Nature.”
Suddenly, the cart took an abrupt charge forward, and hoofsteps pounded on the worn track. Flaz lurched into Luke's shoulder, and she clutched Sarén as if she was going to fall. Tania leaned around to stare at them, softly at Luke, then gravely at Flaz.
“I think it is time we send her, before we get back into the village.” Her blue eyes swam
with grief. Flaz was queen of the area. She was royal, and a respect like no other culture brewed in all of the lands folk, and when a daughter of that had to go through such pain, it was shared through all.
Flaz glared at her as if she had recited an evil incantation. But she said nothing in reply, but looked down at the dribbling baby girl, who had her eyes closed, and her fists balled. She pulled out a tooth shaped crystal from her pocket, and placed it by the infant's heart. Tears ebbed at the edges of her eyes, and she buried her face in the folds of the fabric, taking in the sweet baby smell.
A hand rubbed her back, and Luke was there too, sobbing into her shoulder. Their tears fell like autumn rain, through clouds of grey and dispair, and over the bright warm earth. Over
Sarén. Tania gave them a moment, but she still watched, torn between two ways. The happiness of her king and queen, or the future of their offspring.
“I love you will all my heart, my darling, my sweet. One day you will understand, just listen to the dragon deep within you.” Flaz chided gently, lifting her head and staring for the last time at the sleeping form. Chest rising and falling, head dipped to one side, nothing but peace.
She gathered up the edges of the material and tucked them in snug, then, as she passed the wrap back to Tania, she quickly pulled the hood of the towel over Sarén's pointed, elf ears and said goodbye.