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Tag: short story

Summer 2021 goal review

Once again, it’s time for my quarterly check-in to see how I’m doing with the goals I set for myself in January.

I’m still adjusting to my new-ish job. Someone quit when they moved, so I’m picking up an extra shift every week for the next I-don’t-even-know how long. Which means 50 hours, over 4 days. Sometimes it’s slow and I have some free time to write or crochet or read or whatever, but for the most part life right now consists of work, sleep, and loading and unloading my dishwasher. As you can see, my annual goals don’t really fit into that very well.

Anyways.

  1. Continue to publish and promote my Heartsbane Saga series. I’m still picking away on edits on books 1.5, 2.5 (which has to come out before book 3), 3 (which has to be edited to match book 2.5), and now book 3.5.
  2. Publish something at least twice a week. I’m at 29 stories published on Medium so far in 2021, which is just over one a week. I serialized the first Heartsbane Saga story, “The Maiden in the Tower,” into 7 parts, but even excluding that I’m not doing bad for this. Aim for the stars, still on top of the world, and all that Pitbull jazz. I’m also looking into a series for Amazon’s new Vella thing, which would bump this number up too.
  3. Marketing. I have several things on my radar, as soon as I get another Heartsbane book or two out. September, maybe?
  4. Travel travel travel. Now here is somewhere I’m exceeding my goal. Since my last update, at the end of May I went to Rapids City, SD, and eastern Wyoming to hike around the Badlands and Black Hills (and tried Runza in Nebraska for the first time, after driving past them for years. Verdict: okay). Then the next weekend, I headed up to Bemidji, MN, to vanlife around the Frigid Northlands (and eat pasties), but it was almost 100F so I headed over to cooler North Dakota instead. Last weekend, I picked my kid up from his aunt’s in Kansas City, MO, so I’d have an excuse to go back to that German restaurant in Wichita I ate at in February, and then head to Oklahoma City to get some more goat sausage for ravioli. I’m hoping to squeeze in another weekend trip in early August, and then in the middle of that month I’m heading to Hawaii for a week, where I plan to make myself sick eating fresh pineapples and lychee smoothies daily.
  5. Continue to Marie Kondo the shit outta my life. My current project is my office, and specifically the yarn that covers every surface. My problem here is that every time I sort through a box of it, I get sidetracked by starting a new project with every skein. I have a couple craft shows planned for this year, so at least the projects aren’t wasted (assuming I finish them).
  6. Read 100 books. I haven’t made much progress with this since the last check-in; I’m currently at 28 books (26 behind schedule). I’m looking forward to spending some time reading on the beach next month, to try to catch up.

If you’ve set goals for yourself, what are they? How are you doing with them?

Weekend Writing Warrior 7/18/21 #8Sunday

Heartsbane logoWelcome back for the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop, where a bunch of writers share 8-10 sentences from a current or recent WIP. I skipped last week, as I was out of town. My son spent a week with his aunt in Kansas City, so I drove down to pick him up and then we spent the weekend in Oklahoma City. It’s a nice city, with lots of great food – which is really one of the main things I look for when traveling, not gonna lie.

No food in this week’s excerpt, however. I’m continuing on with book 3.5 of my Heartsbane Saga series of fairy tales retold in a world of Vikings. This one is “The Horrible Husfreyja,” a retelling of The Ugly Duckling. Protagonist Uli wants to be a warrior, not a housewife. She’s out in the woods near her home when she runs into some local boys. This snippet picks up right where the last one left off.

* * * * * * *

Uli continued to grin at him, although her heart pounded. Was this how berserkers felt before battle, this mix of fear and euphoria? Not that she would ever know what battle was like; her fate was to remain at home, always expected to be deferential to men like her stepfather and Torleif. A wave of despair rushed over her, and she channeled it into reckless abandon. Here and now, for just this brief moment, she was in control.

“Afraid of being beat by a woman, are you?” she taunted. “And especially in front of your friends? Afraid they’ll run home and tell your father, and he’ll never let you go on raids with him?”

“I’m warning you….”

* * * * * * *

And the rest of that scene:

“I’m more likely to go raiding than you ever are! Maybe I should teach you how to bake ebelskivers, for the warriors to eat when they return home without you?”

Torleif let out a yell and charged at her. Although she only had a dagger against his short sword, and he had a longer reach, she was a more skilled fighter, more nimble, and she was able to jump away from his blade while parrying his attacks. He swung angrily, with seemingly no thought to his next blows, and Uli was able to land multiple stabs as she silenced her mind, to just feel and react in the moment.

* * * * * * *

Other books in the Heartsbane Saga:

Book .5: “The Maiden in the Tower” – Carys has resigned herself to a life of servitude, locked away in a tower, until a chance encounter with a stranger leaves her daring to hope for more.

Book 1: Captive and the Cursed – When Nyah’s sister is kidnapped by barbarians, Nyah offers herself in her place. But she soon learns the barbarians aren’t what she expected, especially their cursed leader.

Book 1.5: “The Brave Little Thrall” – Fahim Al Rasheed has spent his life studying foreign cultures, but he never thought he’d actually have the chance to experience them. When his journey of a lifetime leaves him and a young barbarian king marooned in a hostile country, he’ll have to rely on more than book learning to make it back home alive.

Book 2: Sleeping Shaman – Nyah and her friends travel halfway across the world seeking a cure for a barbarian curse, only to discover that the man they’re seeking has gone missing. Nyah must navigate dangerous rivalries and conflicting cultures before time runs out.

Book 2.5: “Ezichi the Beautiful” – Only Banu Sasan, the fabled witch of the desert, can help a young bride complete a task. But what will she require from Ezichi in return?

Book 3: Little Amethyst Abaya: When Nyah discovers a traitor among her friends and no one believes her, she’ll have to take matters into her own hands to save them all.

Weekend Writing Warrior 7/4/21 #8Sunday

Heartsbane logoHow is it already July?? Summer seems like it just started, and it’s really almost half over!

Anyways.

Welcome back for the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop, where a bunch of writers share 8-10 sentences from a current or recent WIP. I’m continuing to share from book 3.5 of my Heartsbane Saga series of fairy tales retold in a world of Vikings, which is a retelling of The Ugly Duckling. I’m tentatively calling it “The Horrible Husfreyja.”

Uli, our protagonist who would much rather be a warrior than a housewife, was out in the woods when she ran into some local boys who always pick on her. This picks up from where I left off last week.

* * * * * * *

“Pretending to be a man again, Uli?” Torleif sneered at her, but didn’t come any closer. She knew he used a sword, badly, and hadn’t been the one to shoot an arrow at her. Probably one of his friends, trying to scare her. “What’s the opposite of argr?”

“Certainly not you,” Uli retorted.

Torleif glared at the one boy who dared to laugh. To call someone argr — meaning unmanly, or a man who lived as a woman— was one of the worst insults a Karjalander could call someone. Had they both been men, he would have had every right under the law to challenge her to a duel on the spot.

“You’re lucky you’re a woman, although a poor one at that, or I would kill you here and now for those words.”

* * * * * * *

Other books in the Heartsbane Saga:

Book .5: “The Maiden in the Tower” – Carys has resigned herself to a life of servitude, locked away in a tower, until a chance encounter with a stranger leaves her daring to hope for more.

Book 1: Captive and the Cursed – When Nyah’s sister is kidnapped by barbarians, Nyah offers herself in her place. But she soon learns the barbarians aren’t what she expected, especially their cursed leader.

Book 1.5: “The Brave Little Thrall” – Fahim Al Rasheed has spent his life studying foreign cultures, but he never thought he’d actually have the chance to experience them. When his journey of a lifetime leaves him and a young barbarian king marooned in a hostile country, he’ll have to rely on more than book learning to make it back home alive.

Book 2: Sleeping Shaman – Nyah and her friends travel halfway across the world seeking a cure for a barbarian curse, only to discover that the man they’re seeking has gone missing. Nyah must navigate dangerous rivalries and conflicting cultures before time runs out.

Book 2.5: “Ezichi the Beautiful” – Only Banu Sasan, the fabled witch of the desert, can help a young bride complete a task. But what will she require from Ezichi in return?

Book 3: Little Amethyst Abaya: When Nyah discovers a traitor among her friends and no one believes her, she’ll have to take matters into her own hands to save them all.

Weekend Writing Warrior 6/27/21 #8Sunday

Heartsbane logoWelcome back for the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop, where a bunch of writers share 8-10 sentences from a current or recent WIP. I’m continuing to share from book 3.5 of my Heartsbane Saga series of fairy tales retold in a world of Vikings, which is a retelling of The Ugly Duckling.

There’s just something about kickass heroines that pulls me into a story, and the protagonist of this WIP, a young Viking maiden named Uli, is about as kickass as you can get.

I’m continuing on from last week. Uli’s stepfather told her to make herself scarce the next few days as a nearby noble visits, so she’s headed out to play in the woods. Last week left off with someone shooting an arrow at her.

* * * * * * *

Without hesitation, she fitted the rock into the leather sling and shot it off towards where she judged her attacker to be, followed in quick succession by several other stones from the pouch at her waist. Although she listened carefully, no grunts or cries of pain indicated she’d hit her target, and she swore under her breath.

Unsheathing the dagger she kept tucked into her boot, she stood tall and faced her attacker. “Are you a warrior or an old woman?” she bellowed. “Show yourself and fight me honorably like a man!”

She swore again as four boys melted out from the forest. They all lived either in the village or on nearby farms, and they all took pleasure in tormenting her, especially Torleif. Two years older than her own fifteen, he should have been out on his first raid already but his father had refused to let him go, stating he wasn’t ready. Uli couldn’t fault his father; she wouldn’t want to have to rely on him either in battle or at sea. It was well known that Torleif was lazy, always trying to shirk his duties and then blame it on those around him when called out for it.

* * * * * * *

And the rest of that scene:

Uli knew she could easily best him in a fair fight, but Torleif didn’t fight fair, especially when he had his friends around as witnesses. She also knew there was no way she would come out of this fight unscathed. She grinned at them, a trick her father had told her Karjalander warriors often used to unnerve their foes. These boys wouldn’t get away unscathed either.

* * * * * * *

Other books in the Heartsbane Saga:

Book .5: “The Maiden in the Tower” – Carys has resigned herself to a life of servitude, locked away in a tower, until a chance encounter with a stranger leaves her daring to hope for more.

Book 1: Captive and the Cursed – When Nyah’s sister is kidnapped by barbarians, Nyah offers herself in her place. But she soon learns the barbarians aren’t what she expected, especially their cursed leader.

Book 1.5: “The Brave Little Thrall” – Fahim Al Rasheed has spent his life studying foreign cultures, but he never thought he’d actually have the chance to experience them. When his journey of a lifetime leaves him and a young barbarian king marooned in a hostile country, he’ll have to rely on more than book learning to make it back home alive.

Book 2: Sleeping Shaman – Nyah and her friends travel halfway across the world seeking a cure for a barbarian curse, only to discover that the man they’re seeking has gone missing. Nyah must navigate dangerous rivalries and conflicting cultures before time runs out.

Book 2.5: “Ezichi the Beautiful” – Only Banu Sasan, the fabled witch of the desert, can help a young bride complete a task. But what will she require from Ezichi in return?

Book 3: Little Amethyst Abaya: When Nyah discovers a traitor among her friends and no one believes her, she’ll have to take matters into her own hands to save them all.

Weekend Writing Warrior 6/20/21 #8Sunday

Heartsbane logoWelcome back for the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop, where a bunch of writers share 8-10 sentences from a current or recent WIP. I’m continuing to share from book 3.5 of my Heartsbane Saga series of fairy tales retold in a world of Vikings.

This story is a retelling of The Ugly Duckling, and it centers on Uli, the childhood nurse of Prince Brandulfur who accompanies him on all his adventures, even when he’s grown up. This week’s snippet continues on directly from last week’s. Uli’s stepfather told her to make herself scarce the next few days as a nearby noble visits, so she’s headed out to play in the woods.

* * * * * * *

Uli’s grin widened the farther she rode from the farm. Early summer was her favorite time of the year; the weather was still cool but not chilly, and the daylight stretched seemingly forever. Her father had told tales of farther north, near the edge of the world, where there was no night during the summer, and she longed to discover whether that was true. His tales also told of giants in the north, and sea serpents, and the Drottnar, a race of demigods who were as powerful as the Fates themselves, with knowledge of everything that had ever happened and everything that would come to pass.

Her grin dampened. Her father had been killed in a raid across the sea when she was just a little girl, and even nearly a dozen years later, she still missed him dearly. If he were still alive, she knew he wouldn’t push her to be merely a housewife. She sighed. He wasn’t here, and unless the Drottnar intervened, her fate was already decided.

* * * * * * *

And the rest of that scene:

But that was in the future, and today was a beautiful day all her own to enjoy. She slipped off her horse, removed her boots, and padded barefoot alongside him. The moss and dirt were cool beneath her toes. She bent down to pick up a rounded pebble for her sling, and then whirled around as an arrow whizzed past her head.

* * * * * * *

Other books in the Heartsbane Saga:

Book .5: “The Maiden in the Tower” – Carys has resigned herself to a life of servitude, locked away in a tower, until a chance encounter with a stranger leaves her daring to hope for more.

Book 1: Captive and the Cursed – When Nyah’s sister is kidnapped by barbarians, Nyah offers herself in her place. But she soon learns the barbarians aren’t what she expected, especially their cursed leader.

Book 1.5: “The Brave Little Thrall” – Fahim Al Rasheed has spent his life studying foreign cultures, but he never thought he’d actually have the chance to experience them. When his journey of a lifetime leaves him and a young barbarian king marooned in a hostile country, he’ll have to rely on more than book learning to make it back home alive.

Book 2: Sleeping Shaman – Nyah and her friends travel halfway across the world seeking a cure for a barbarian curse, only to discover that the man they’re seeking has gone missing. Nyah must navigate dangerous rivalries and conflicting cultures before time runs out.

Book 2.5: “Ezichi the Beautiful” – Only Banu Sasan, the fabled witch of the desert, can help a young bride complete a task. But what will she require from Ezichi in return?

Book 3: Little Amethyst Abaya: When Nyah discovers a traitor among her friends and no one believes her, she’ll have to take matters into her own hands to save them all.

Weekend Writing Warrior 6/13/21 #8Sunday

Heartsbane logoWelcome back for the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop, where a bunch of writers share 8-10 sentences from a current or recent WIP. I’m continuing to share from book 3.5 of my Heartsbane Saga series of fairy tales retold in a world of Vikings.

This story is a retelling of The Ugly Duckling, and it centers on Uli, the childhood nurse of Prince Brandulfur who accompanies him on all his adventures, even when he’s grown up. This week’s snippet continues on directly from last week’s, which ended with Uli’s stepfather asking to speak with her after breakfast (that she cooked poorly).

* * * * * * *

He didn’t say anything as he studied her. She knew he had no cause for judgment, not this time. All her morning chores were completed at least adequately, and both her spear and her sling were hidden in the woods beyond their farm; she’d only needed to learn that lesson once.

“Jarl Magni and his sons will be visiting our home tonight. I can’t have them eating half-raw duck or rock-hard bread, or have mead spilled in their beards, or whatever new mayhem you’ll cause this time. They’re here for your sister Ingvild anyway, so your presence won’t be missed.” He raised an eyebrow. “Understood?”

“Yes, Father,” Uli said said dutifully.

“Go on, then.”

* * * * * * *

And the rest of that scene:

Uli nodded and went outside. As soon as she reached the stables, she broke into a grin. Magni and his insufferable sons were from two villages over, and their visits nearly always lasted several days. Which meant she would have several days of time to herself, with no expectations to be a dutiful housewife-in-training.

Weekend Writing Warrior 5/9/21 #8Sunday

Happy Mother’s Day, Weekend Writing Warriors! I’ve been fortunate enough to spend the weekend with my son, hiking in a local nature preserve and then cooking. He’s inherited my love of the kitchen and made us chicken parmesan with triple chocolate mousse cake (and I’m very proud that I helped him and not the other way around).

Chocolate mousse cake

Since it’s Mother’s Day and my main character in the Heartsbane Saga is an orphan, I thought I’d switch things up and post a flash piece I wrote last year, titled “Motherhood.”

* * * * * * *

Abyzou tells herself she has no regrets. She loves her child and its father. She loves the life they’ve created together, so different from her past.

But outside the weather is changing. Calling to her. And inside, the baby’s cries cannot be consoled. For days now it’s had a slight fever and a new tooth and doesn’t want to be held or set down in its crib. Aby walks the house, bouncing the child in her tired arms, as she longingly glances out the windows at the changing leaves rustling in the cool fall breeze, until finally, finally, the baby falls into an exhausted sleep.

Gingerly she lays it down in the cradle that’s been in its father’s family for generations. She tiptoes to the window and opens it, then backs away, as the wind whips in, caressing her skin like a lover’s touch, murmuring sweet nothings in her ears.

* * * * * * *

And the rest, since it’s short:

She takes a small, tentative step towards the window, then another larger, more confident one, guided by the wind and the beckoning chill beyond the panes of glass. She opens the window wide, inviting in the wild night and all it brings with it, when the baby stirs.

She stops and looks in its crib. By some miracle the child is still asleep. Aby strokes its cheek, just as gently as the wind strokes hers. The baby reaches over and grabs her finger, grasping it firmly in its tiny hand, as a delicate smile graces its lips.

Aby looks at the window, at what she knows waits for her beyond the room’s feeble light, and then back down at her sleeping child. He sighs softly in his sleep, his grip on her never wavering.

Aby carefully scoops him up into her arms, his small warm body fitting perfectly against hers as she walks over and shuts the window.

* * * * * * *

I originally posted this on Medium. I usually post several short stories or microfiction pieces over there each month, so if you use that platform, hop on over and read some of my other stuff, clap, follow, all that good stuff. Thanks!

Spring 2021 goal review

Clyde happens

Clyde from Heartsbane still does not care about my goals.

Once again, it’s time for my quarterly check-in to see how I’m doing with the goals I set for myself in January.

I started a new job in January, doing intake assessments at the psychiatric hospital that recently opened in town. I’m enjoying it pretty well, although the schedule of three consecutive days of 12-hour shifts looks a lot nicer on paper than it does actually working it – especially when that third day rolls around and my brain is numb. And especially especially when I pick up an extra shift. My bank account is loving it, but my writing goals not so much.

Anyways.

  1. Continue to publish and promote my Heartsbane Saga series. Books .5, 1, and 2 are all out. Books 1.5, 2.5, and 3 are ready to go as soon as I’m done with edits. Soon, I hope.
  2. Publish something at least twice a week. I just checked and I’ve published 15 stories on Medium this year, which averages out to about one a week. Not twice a week, as per my goal, but still pretty good. Most of it is microfiction, but that’s okay. It’s something.
  3. Marketing. Brian Cohen just started another Amazon ads mini course this week, and I’m hoping to follow along. My Amazon ads have been doing decent for sales, and I want to kick them up a bit. I’ve also started participating in the Weekend Writing Warrior blog hop again after a long absence, which is helping with marketing a bit too, I think.
  4. Travel travel travel. I made it to Dodge City, KS, in February. The museum was a bit of a whitewashed disappointment, but I still enjoyed getting out on the Plains. On that trip I also ate at a delicious German restaurant in Wichita, explored Truckhenge in Topeka (not as good as Carhenge or even Cadillac Ranch, but A for effort), and managed to sweet talk my way into a private self-guided tour through a closed-for-renovations psychiatric museum in St. Joseph, MO. A couple weeks ago my kid and I went to Chicago for his belated birthday trip and found some awesome arepas, which is his thing right now. This weekend I hope to go to Detroit and eat pasties from the Eastern Market, Middle Eastern from my favorite Middle Eastern restaurant in Dearborn, Belgian from this little restaurant with awesome beer, and maybe even some Aramaic from this Chaldean restaurant. Yes, I am all about food when I travel. Now that the weather is getting warmer, I’m hoping to use my 3-4 day weekends for some solo vanlife hiking trips pretty regularly.
  5. Continue to Marie Kondo the shit outta my life. I Marie Kondo’d my living room last year and it’s still pretty good. Now I’m nearly done with my dining room; my dad is building me a big floor-to-ceiling cabinet so I can organize all my kitchen gadgets and pantry stuff. Next it’ll be on to my office, which is a godawful mess.
  6. Read 100 books. My usual goal. I’m currently at about 16/30 books, but I’ve been able to read a bit recently at work to catch up (another nice perk of the job; when we’re full or on hold for admissions at night, my supervisor doesn’t mind if we read or whatever as long as we’re caught up with everything else). I’ve also started going to the gym 2-3 times a week, and I read for about 20 minutes while walking on the treadmill. Two birds with one stone and all that.

If you’ve set goals for yourself, what are they? How are you doing with them?

Weekend Writing Warrior 1/31/21 #8Sunday

Heartsbane logoWelcome to the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop, where each week contributing writers share 8-10+ sentences from their latest projects.

I’m currently sharing from the next standalone short story in my Heartsbane Saga series of fairy tales retold in a world of Vikings. “Ezichi the Beautiful” is a retelling of the Russian fairy tale Vasilisa the Beautiful, about a girl who gets help from the witch Baba Yaga to complete tasks set by her evil stepmother.

I’m skipping ahead again this week. Ezichi’s cowife sabotaged their water supply and sent Ezichi to ask an old desert witch for help fixing it. Ezichi had befriended a bunch of street children, who accompanied her on her journey. We pick up with them reaching the witch’s house.

* * * * * * *

Ezichi cautiously approached the witch’s house. She turned to check on the street children who had accompanied her, but they had disappeared into the rocky desert scrub. She didn’t blame them; if her mission hadn’t been so dire, she would’ve joined them.

A fence made of bones marked off a small dirt yard, with human and animal skulls mounted atop it like sentries. Heart pounding, she pushed open the bone gate and stepped into the yard. The dwelling itself was a macabre curiosity as well, unlike any she had ever seen in Aghlabid. The small shack was supported by thin pillars that raised it so far off the ground that she wasn’t sure how anyone could even get aside, especially an old woman. The dwelling seemed to twist and spin in the strong desert winds, adding an additional layer of eeriness.

Ezichi took a deep breath. Witches didn’t exist, she reminded herself; this was just an odd, malicious old woman who sometimes helped people with their problems.

* * * * * * *

And the rest of that scene:

Even though she didn’t quite believe herself, she walked up to the house. “Hello?” she called out.

The door flew open, although Ezichi couldn’t see anyone inside. “Come in, my child,” a voice croaked. “I’ve been expecting you.”

* * * * * * *

Heartsbane Saga – fairy tales retold in a world of Vikings!

Book .5: “The Maiden in the Tower” – Carys has resigned herself to a life of servitude, locked away in a tower, until a chance encounter with a stranger leaves her daring to hope for more.

Book 1: Captive and the Cursed – When Nyah’s sister is kidnapped by barbarians, Nyah offers herself in her place. But she soon learns the barbarians aren’t what she expected, especially their cursed leader.

Book 1.5: “The Brave Little Thrall” – Fahim Al Rasheed has spent his life studying foreign cultures, but he never thought he’d actually have the chance to visit them. When his journey of a lifetime leaves him and a young barbarian king marooned in a hostile country, he’ll have to rely on more than book learning to make it back home alive.

Book 2: Sleeping Shaman – Nyah and her friends travel halfway across the world seeking a cure for a barbarian curse, only to discover that the man they’re seeking has gone missing. Nyah must navigate dangerous rivalries and conflicting cultures before time runs out

Weekend Writing Warrior 1/24/21 #8Sunday

Heartsbane logoWelcome to the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop, where each week contributing writers share 8-10+ sentences from their latest projects.

I’m currently sharing from the next standalone short story in my Heartsbane Saga series of fairy tales retold in a world of Vikings. “Ezichi the Beautiful” is a retelling of the Russian fairy tale Vasilisa the Beautiful, about a girl who gets help from the witch Baba Yaga to complete tasks set by her evil stepmother.

I’m skipping ahead just a little bit this weekend. Since last week, Ezichi has befriended the local street children, who help her with the never-ending chores the first wife, Yaba, has for her.

* * * * * * *

When Ezichi, or rather the street children, had finished the list of chores that Yaba had given her, she went into the kitchen to get a drink of water for her parched throat, but the water skin that normally hung on the wall was empty. She went into the courtyard, but the fountain that she often scooped water from was dry. Ezichi frowned; usually it burbled day and night, which meant the mechanism that fed it had broken at some point. She traced the path of the pipe from the fountain to the cistern at the edge of the house, but fortunately saw no sign of leaks. Fortunately, too, water glistened at the bottom of the cistern, although it was too far down for her to reach; unfortunately, the knob that controlled the flow of the water appeared to be missing.

She was muddling over how to fix this when Yaba’s shrill voice rang out from the house.

“Ezichi, get me a drink of water!”

Ezichi scowled. Somehow, she knew Yaba was behind this, but how stupid could the first wife be to cut off their water supply? How could the household survive under the hot desert sun without any water?

* * * * * * *

And the rest of that scene:

She stomped through the courtyard and back into the house, where Yaba and the other two wives were lounging in the women’s salon.

“What did you do to the fountain?” Ezichi demanded.

The second and third wives exchanged a look, and the third wife giggled.

Yaba simply raised an eyebrow. “There’s something wrong with the fountain?” she asked innocently.

“You damn well know there is.”

* * * * * * *

Post a link to your eight-ten sentence blog entry or join the fun at the Weekend Writing Warriors website.

* * * * * * *

Heartsbane Saga – fairy tales retold in a world of Vikings!

Book .5: “The Maiden in the Tower” – Carys has resigned herself to a life of servitude, locked away in a tower, until a chance encounter with a stranger leaves her daring to hope for more.

Book 1: Captive and the Cursed – When Nyah’s sister is kidnapped by barbarians, Nyah offers herself in her place. But she soon learns the barbarians aren’t what she expected, especially their cursed leader.

Book 1.5: “The Brave Little Thrall” – Fahim Al Rasheed has spent his life studying foreign cultures, but he never thought he’d actually have the chance to visit them. When his journey of a lifetime leaves him and a young barbarian king marooned in a hostile country, he’ll have to rely on more than book learning to make it back home alive.

Book 2: Sleeping Shaman – Nyah and her friends travel halfway across the world seeking a cure for a barbarian curse, only to discover that the man they’re seeking has gone missing. Nyah must navigate dangerous rivalries and conflicting cultures before time runs out

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