…not including the title.
I finished writing Touch of Fire and am over halfway through with the first read through. I then started a new novel as a distraction. Oops.
Please enjoy this excerpt that will probably make it to the final draft:
Enona didn’t see the need to leave her rooms when she had servants to bring her food. Kyald tried to get her to join the others for dinner, but she claimed she was ill and ate in bed. The next morning she woke to insistent knocking on her door. She pulled the blanket over her head as she waited for Kyald to answer.
The knocking continued. Realizing Kyald must be in the chamber room, she pulled herself out of bed with considerable effort. Her stomach spun and she immediately wished that the pounding would stop, both on the door and in her head.
Enona managed to make it to the door and blinked in surprise at the two strangers standing in her doorway. “Time to get you up, Your Highness. What color do you fancy for today?” the maid asked. She had black hair tied in a neat knot at the nape of her neck and green eyes framed by thick inky lashes. She had a small button nose and a clear complexion. She was by far the prettiest servant Enona had seen.
A silent guard stood next to her.
“I’m going back to bed,” the princess decided.
“Oh no, you can’t go back to sleep!” The maid entered without permission and left the guard outside. “You have a big day ahead of you!”
“Did Kyald send for you?”
The maid paused in confusion. “I don’t know who that is, but Sir Francis sent me.”
Enona huffed. If Sir Francis wanted her dressed it was probably orders from Irver. More experiments, no doubt. “Why can’t they leave me alone?”
“Your Highness?” The maid decided to ignore the comment and put on a big smile. “Have you eaten?”
“I’m not hungry.”
“Nonsense.” She opened the door a crack. “Fetch me breakfast; eggs with ham, fruit, and a selection of pastries along with some cold milk.”
“And wine,” Enona added before the door shut. The maid’s brows rose but she said nothing. Had Roza lied about breakfast wine? It seemed more likely that this girl wasn’t properly trained. She certainly seemed new—Enona knew she would have remembered her face from among the nameless girls who brought her food and emptied her chamber pots.
That reminded her about Kyald. “I must visit the chamber room. Pick out a dress for me.”
“Lace or no lace? Short or long sleeve? Striking or muted?”
Enona stared in shock for a second. Perhaps they’d sent her a tailor. “I don’t care.” She turned and went to the chamber room, surprised when Kyald didn’t reply to her knock. She pushed open the door and found the room empty, which explained the guard outside but not where her guard had gone. More ‘king’s business’?