Excerpt from Wildflower Crown

Wildflower Crown

Wildflower Crown

© Charlotte Cyprus

Prologue

The woman kept to the shadows, avoiding the torches that lit the streets. A hood concealed her face and black cloth was thrown over the basket in her arms. Little whimpers came from the basket, but the woman shushed it, moving through the unfamiliar village slowly. She avoided the men walking home from the pub and went farther to the outskirts of town where there were smaller houses stuffed with squalling children.

Fog rose up from the ground in the cold night air. The streets were tracks of dirt that the recent rain had turned into mud, and it sucked at the woman’s boots as she struggled to keep herself unnoticed. A pitiful cry came from the basket in her arms. The woman paused to reach her hand in and stroke the baby’s cheek. She was rewarded with a happy gurgle.

The woman was caught off guard. She looked at the baby, so sweet and small and innocent. Had she gone far enough south? The king would be hunting her, she knew. It had been a foolish thing to take revenge on the king, but she hadn’t counted on getting pregnant. The baby’s father had no idea where they were, or that the baby existed, but it was for the best. The babe could live out an anonymous childhood away from the chaos of her own life.

A child’s cry rang out in the night, but it wasn’t her baby. The woman froze and listened hard to find where the noise was coming from. The child called out again, and the woman determined that it was the little house across the street. The roof was crumbling and the door was hanging at an angle. As the crying continued, a light was lit. The woman could see it through the shuttered window.

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I finished Camp Nanowrimo!

My goal was only 20,000, but still! I knew I couldn’t get 50,000 so I’m plenty happy with 20k. Here is super official proof of my win:

ImageSo go me. I know have a ton of homework to catch up on, so that should be…. fun 😐

Here is an excerpt from the novel, A Game of Madness:

“I’m an old man. I get lonely. Won’t you give me someone to talk to?”

Wren rolled back over and sat up on her elbows. “An old man? You’re what, five and forty?”

Ferran frowned and lowered himself to the bare featherbed. “You think I look five and forty?”

“Fifty, then?” Wren tried. She didn’t know. He had a few lines on his face, but they weren’t deep. For the most part his skin was still tan and smooth. He said he’d been there for seventeen years, so he had to be older.

“Gods, girl. I’m four and thirty. I was making a joke. Do I look like a grandfather to you?”

“Four and thirty?” Wren asked. “That means you couldn’t have been more than fifteen when you left Vor’Tor.”

“It’s Vor’Torn,” Ferran corrected. He gave her a sad smile. “I’ve been away from there for far too long. I hadn’t planned on being here for years. I don’t even remember my parents’ faces. I don’t even know if they’re still alive.”

“I’m sorry,” Wren said. What else was there to say? “I don’t remember my mother’s face. She died giving birth to my youngest sister. I was still a little girl when she died. I just remember the stories she used to tell me before I went to bed.”

“Stories of princesses and ladies being swept away to beautiful castles?”

Wren shook her head. “A few, but not normally. I didn’t like the stories about princesses. I got mad and wouldn’t talk to my mother for days the time she told me the story of The Dirty Farm Girl.”

“I’m sorry, I’m not familiar with that one. We grew up with different stories on Vor’Torn,” Ferran said. “Lots of tales of pirates, cannibals, and chests of gold.”

“I don’t remember the words to it, exactly, but the story starts off with a dirty little girl who works on a farm tending to the pigs. She wishes every day to be able to go live in a castle, and one day a prince rode by. It started raining and the prince asked for shelter in the little girl’s hut. She let him in before she realized that the rain had washed away all the dirt. The prince fell in love with her and whisked her away to his castle to be his princess.” Wren fidgeted with her blankets. She had never shared that much with anyone in her life. Her family was the only friends they had. What she had to tell they already knew and what they didn’t she refused to tell anyone.

“Why were you mad?” Ferran asked.

“Oh. Because I was afraid that some prince was going to ride up and kidnap me from my home. I worked on the farm just like my brothers did. I loved being outside and working the land. My favorite job was to tend the chickens. Everyone says that chickens are stupid, but they all have their own personalities. They can be nice pets if you take care of them.”

“I can see why you attacked Rozen to try and escape. It sounds like you had a nice life.”

Wren drew her knees up to her chest and looked at Ferran. His eyes seemed even darker in the low light of the candles. They were almost black. “Rozen told you about that?”

“He came to have me examine his head to make sure you hadn’t done any real damage to it. I think he’s lucky you didn’t cut his throat.”

I swear, I didn’t mention chickens just to continue with the chicken takeover of my blog…. or did I….

 

 

Writing Prompt: Anger

Objective: Write an emotional arc for a character to move through.
Objective: Explore the use of voice in conveying emotion.

Ferran paced back and forth between his bed and the wall. There wasn’t much space, barely enough room for him to stretch his legs. His bed was but a straw pallet laying on the ground, on top of which sat his new… present. Wren.

“Are you alright?” the girl asked cautiously.

“Am I alright?” Ferran asked. He turned to face her. “Do I seem alright to you? Do you have any idea of the problems you’ve caused me just by coming here?”

Wren stood up. Though Ferran was very tall, Wren was only barely shorter than him. “I’m sorry. Truly, I am. As you know, I chose to come here to never see my family again. I chose to put myself at the mercy of Lord Acton. I simply begged for him to throw me away to one of his servants to use as a toy. Yes, these were all things I chose.

Ferran shook his head and collapsed onto his bed, hanging his head in his hands. He allowed Wren to tower over him. “I’ve been working for years to free my sister from this place. Years.” He hated Lord Acton, hated him with his entire being. The man was scum, not worthy of the throne he sat on. Given the chance Ferran would kill Acton without a second thought. The only problem was that such an act would prevent him from helping his sister. He couldn’t just throw everything away like that. 

“I’m sorry,” Wren said after some time had passed. 

“I am too. No one is to blame but Acton. I just want to get Anna out of here.”

“And what if she doesn’t want to leave?” 

Ferran sighed. “Why do you think I’ve been here for so long?”

A short excerpt from an untitled novel I’m working on written for the above prompt. 

Editing is a pain

Now don’t get me wrong, I know editing is important, but it’s still a pain. I’ve finished editing the first/secondish draft of Woman of Fire, Man of Ice and now I have to type up those changes. Why would I need to do such a tedious thing, you ask? Because I was editing a hard copy. I was like “oh yeah, that will make things easier for me, I’ll just print it all out“. Wrong. So wrong.

I edited the whole novel in a maybe ten hours (total) but it’s taken me a few hours just to retype the corrections in the prologue and chapter one. It is a pain in my bum and I wish I had a little writer slave to do it for me. It’s going to take forever.

However, here is an excerpt from what I have written so far:

Hardly, Johara. You’re lucky we even let you attend the balls. You should be cleaning up after them.” Johara turned to see the sneer on her sister’s face. She stuck her tongue out at her. “See? Acting like a dirty peasant. What are you whining about this time? Another man attack you? If you just let them you’d be married and out of our hair already.”

 

Okay so it’s not much of an excerpt, I lied. In my defense I have an exam coming up with questions such as “4. Differentiate oligodendrocytes from Schwann cells.” (which I don’t yet have an answer to, sorry for the people Googling that question and ending up here) but I just wanted to post an update on Woman of Fire, Man of Ice.

That is such a long title. I want to refer to it as wofmoi but that is just silly. Still the best I got.