Weekend Writing Warrior 12/27/20 #8Sunday

Sleeping Shaman coverThis week will be the last time I share from Sleeping Shaman, my retelling of Sleeping Beauty set in my Heartsbane Saga Viking world. Next week I’m moving on to the next standalone short story in the series, “Ezichi the Beautiful,” a retelling of the Russian fairy tale “Vasilisa the Beautiful” which comes out January 15th-ish. I’d intended to start posting that one this week, but it seems like everyone wanted to know what happened with the kiss request last week, so here you go. Merry Christmas!

Protagonist Nyah bumped into Domhnall, a man she traveled with when she was with the barbarians in book 1. It turns out he’s an earl, something he didn’t tell her in book 1. He invited her and her sister to dinner, and then invited them to travel with him to a faraway country to find a cure for the curse affecting Brandulfur, another book 1 character.

After dinner, Nyah and Domhnall are taking a walk through his gardens, and, ever the gentleman, he asked if he could kiss her.

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I nodded, and he leaned in and pressed his lips gently against mine.

It wasn’t my first kiss—I’d kissed Wynne any number of times—but it was so much different with Domhnall. He put his hand on my back, holding me to him, and a warmth suffused through my body. Eyes closed, I leaned into him before he changed into the memory of a forceful, rancid-smelling bandit thrusting his tongue into my mouth. I stiffened and pulled away.

“We should be going.” I turned and quickly walked back towards the house, calling, “Dar? Payton? We need to leave.”

Domhnall chased after me. “I didn’t mean to offend—”

* * * * * * *

And the rest of this scene:

“No, it’s nothing you did.” I cut him off. “It’s late, and Payton’s sick, and Dar needs to rise early for work, and….”

“Alright.” He studied me for a moment. “I’ll send for the cart to take you home.”

“Thank you.”

We walked in silence, meeting Payton and Dar near the gate into the street.

“Please think about coming with us to Aghlabid,” he said as we climbed into the cart.

“We will, Lord Domhnall,” Payton said. “Thank you for dinner! We’ll see you soon, I hope?”

“I hope so as well,” he responded.

“Me too,” I whispered as the cart pulled away.

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About Sleeping Shaman, available now at Amazon:

The desert holds many secrets. Will death be one of them?

Nyah thought she’d fit in better in the capital rather than in her tiny village, but life in the big city is tougher than she anticipated. When she stumbles across a familiar face, she gladly jumps at the chance for a new adventure with her barbarian friends. They’re headed to Egwu’s home country where they hope his scholar father can translate Heartsbane, the book that holds the cure for Prince Brandulfur’s debilitating curse.

Their plans change as soon as they arrive and discover that Egwu’s family is missing, most likely cursed as well. And meanwhile time is running out for Brand, who grows weaker every day.

Nyah vows to save her friend by solving the mystery of Egwu’s missing family, but she didn’t anticipate all the obstacles in her way: a deadly rivalry between two families, a clash of powerful cultures, and a budding romance that seems destined for heartbreak. She’ll need all her wits to outsmart her opponent—that is, if she can even figure out who it is.

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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.


  1. Dare those inconvenient memories! At least, she’s learned he’s a gentleman.

    1. Whoops, I meant “Darn” (Darn those fingernails!)

  2. What horrible timing for those memories! Though, the moment was sweet between them.

  3. This wasn’t the reaction Domnhall was hoping for, I expect.

  4. Thanks for sharing the rest of the kissing scene! She is a bundle of contradictions all right and I bet Domnhall is intrigued. Enjoyed the snippet…

  5. Old memories have a way of influencing how we build new ones. Great snippet, that shows how that happens.

  6. So sad for both of them that the memory ruined the beginnings of a true kiss. I hope Domnhall won’t be discouraged. Great snippet!

  7. Memories can intrude but I think Domnhall will still be intrigued.

  8. She needs to get past the memories because he seems like a good guy. Next on my TBR. :-)

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