FantasyFridayStill working away on Twin Curse. I think I’m nearing the ending, though there are a few twists to come yet! And of course, as I write, I keep discovering new ones!

I thought today, since I’ve told a lot of Brianna’s story, that I’d switch to my hero, Lyall. This is his introduction into the story. He has a few secrets of his own.

Lyall stamped the mud off his boots and slipped back the hood of his cloak as he walked into the inn. The warmth inside was a welcome change from the rain splattered streets, and for a moment, he allowed himself to let his guard down. He had stayed in this inn each time he visited the city. He felt as safe here as he could anywhere this far from home.

Little had changed since his last visit, nearly twelve months ago. It was a Tuesday night, and the common room was relatively quiet, only a few patrons enjoying a late dinner, and one lone bard playing a ballad half-heartedly on the dais.

A kitchen maid came over to him, looking bored and tired, and asked, “Can I help you?”

“Yes, dinner and an ale please,” Lyall asked, ever polite.

The woman nodded, and headed back towards the kitchen doors.

Lyall’s attention was arrested by a sudden scent, so unexpected here that it took him a moment to process it. The scent of power.

He looked around the room, taking more notice of the people he had all but ignored before. That would teach him to be complacent. But what was a mage doing here, so far from home? And was it a friend, or foe?

Was it the bard? The couple necking at the next table? No. where could he find that elusive scent? He was just about to convince himself that he had imagined it, when it teased his senses again. The serving maid slapped his meal wordlessly down in front of him, and there was no mistaking it.

His eyes glanced up at her. She was younger than he had first imagined her, barely into her twenties, and behind the bored expression he sensed something lurking. Something other than the magical power he sensed clearly in her.

Involuntarily, his hand snaked out and grasped her wrist. She glanced down at him and he was surprised to see no fear in her eyes, only annoyance. “I’m not on the menu,” she said stiffly.

I’ve been giving some consideration to the publishing timeline for this novel, and at this stage, I’m hoping to have it out by Christmas, though depending on finding editing, it could be early next year. If you want to be notified when it comes out, you can sign up for my mailing list below.