(Peeps out of a Hobbit hole) Hello everyone! Hope y’all had a fantastic holiday and are fully recovered & fresh with your New Year’s Resolutions. I have been busy catching up in general of late, but wanted to share a tidbit of what’s happening with Wylder Tales. As most of you know, Prism Book Tours hosted a tour for Scarred Beauty, Volume 2 in the series, where Beauty sort of became the Beast and everything got turned upside down in Vynasha’s life…again. (Evil author chuckle) My mind has been pressed in multiple directions. I’m still working on Tamn, third in my Heaven’s Edge Series, and a couple other side projects. But first and foremost I’ve been brainstorming and hashing out without all the #hashtagging# and testing the waters story-wise. I know where the story will go eventually, but there are all the little in-betweens that I want to get just right. After all, this is a trilogy (unless some major inspiration throws us further) so I want to really deliver for y’all and do this justice. Whew, okay, no more run-on sentences. You came here to see the first Volume 3 teaser, didn’t you? Happy reading!
Bound Beauty Volume 3 Teaser #1
In two months, the impenetrable grip of winter began to ease. While the land remained packed in layers of snow and ice, the sun finally seemed close enough to push life through the cracks. Occasional patches of ice were revealed as the snow reduced to slush underfoot. Vynasha’s foot caught in one such patch and she reached to catch her fall on a nearby tree bough. Wet snow sprung from evergreen needles, hitting her in the face. Her next staggering step sent her elbow-deep into the soggy drift.
Her curse was interrupted by a loud guffaw ahead. Invisible hackles rose from her back in response as she pushed back off the ground and dusted off.
“You must be the clumsiest wyldcat I have ever seen,” Wolfsbane declared as he approached with a manic grin.
“Keep laughing, old man.” Vynasha wrung clumps of snow from her braid.
“Old man?” Wolfsbane crossed his burly arms over his barrel chest. His blue eyes brightened as he lifted his long-bearded chin. “I could run five leagues up and down these mountains before you finished one.”
Vynasha ran another hand over her head to smooth back the stray curls falling into her face. Another fall like that and Erythea’s hard work would come unbound. She huffed a sigh and turned from the grizzled hunter to survey the distant treetops above. Trees grew taller and thicker so near the old road, Wolfsbane had said, because the curse was strongest here.
The old man’s words rang true. No matter how much she ran with him or the pack, she still felt strange with her longer limbs and stronger legs. After she embraced the majik of Soraya’s curse, her body changed her into something not-quite-human. She could run faster, leap farther and with her claws, climb better than before. But when she wasn’t relying on instinct, her human way of thinking tended to get her into trouble.
Wolfsbane chuckled at the sound of her sigh and came to rest a sure hand on her shoulder. “Keep your chin up, beasty. Not every day a human girl turns part wyldcat.”
“I should be getting better, not worse,” she grumbled and squinted off at the darkest patch of the thicket to their right. Some parts of the forest, like this one, set her teeth on edge.
“So you have and so you shall.” Wolfsbane released her and pulled his knives from sheaths hidden in his fur cloak. Vynasha shivered for she had seen up close what he could do with those blades.
“Two moons ago, you could not tell the smells of the forest apart,” he added. Wolfsbane bent into a loose crouch and took a few cautious steps toward the deepening shadow ahead of them. With a whisper, he added, “Today, I will teach you to tell the difference between enchantment and illusion.”
Vynasha loosened her hand, claws open and ready, and pulled her jeweled dagger free with her other hand. She rushed forward with Wolfsbane as he barreled through the thicket, a blur of fur and a baleful cry.
The hunter stopped just shy of a gap in forest and lifted his arm in a wide arc. Vynasha stumbled on her new feet as she pulled back several paces ahead of him. She pivoted on her toe and swiped her claws at air rather than prey. Instead of meeting another predator, her claws bore down on Wolfsbane’s furs.
His blue eyes danced as he pressed the tip of one long dagger against her collarbone. She swatted the cold steel aside with disgust and turned to take in the empty, shadowed gap in the trees.
“I was so sure there was something watching us…” She sniffed at the air, disappointed to only find the hunter’s familiar aroma of death and the wyld. “You might have told me there was nothing here,” she said between breaths.
Wolfsbane chuckled. “Ah, but then you would not have learned your lesson, little wyldcat. Not every shadow is your enemy.”
to be continued…