Ill Fate – Episode 3

Episode 3

In her room that night. Irina and Cia. In bed with the lights out.

Cia insisted on cuddling, as she always did, even though it made Irina anxious. She wrapped her arm around her roommate, nuzzled her nose against her shoulder. It was a habit she’d taken up back when Irina first started to keep herself away from Soren.

“To stop you from sneaking out,” Cia used to say. “Because you know you can’t trust yourself to stay away from him.”

A year later and Cia still had to keep Irina in check. It wasn’t any easier. In fact, it was harder the longer she kept away. Like her soul was wilting. Like she was killing herself. Slowly. On purpose.

For her whole life, the masters had threaded her life and foreseen greatness. It was never their role to change a fate, only to trace it, to see where it went and tell the future to others. She had been told she would be one of the best Fates who’d ever lived. But…

She remembered hearing that “but” for the first time. It hadn’t always been there. Things change. Threads change. And by the time she found out Soren was her “but,” it was too late. Too late to forget him. Too late to let him go.

The day it all changed, her headmaster sat her down and pointed his spectacles at her, his bald head gleaming when he hovered his fingers over the wick of the touchlight. Irina and Soren were two of the brightest students then, and when she’d requested permission for their threads to be crossed so they could plan a life together, the headmaster was pleased.

And then the stern frown.  “He leads your threads to dangerous places. We can’t tell you when this will happen. But it will if you continue to fraternize, if you continue to cross threads, you may become…ill. And this we cannot have. You are too valuable Irina. You both are. We cannot tell you how to live. We cannot force you to guard your future. For we are Fates. We watch, we thread, we listen. But we can urge you, strongly, to refrain from crossing threads with your comrade. We would take no pleasure in your demise, Miss Glass.”

He had said it like that. With those words. Comrade. Fraternize. Become ill.

What he meant was that she could not be with the person she had to love. She couldn’t talk to him or smile with him. Because time they shared and threads they crossed would mean Irina throwing her life away.

When she first told Soren, he laughed at her. He leaned back in his chair, his white teeth flashing as he reeled. “You? An Ill Fate? Irina, you’re the most upstanding citizen in all of Od. They’re wrong.”

And then he threaded her life himself. He wasn’t as good as her. He’d spent most of his studies concentrating on how to make looms—an entirely different process that involved spirited metal work and not reading the futures of strangers. But still, he was talented enough to know how to listen to the life that was held in the fragile threads. He weaved her future, connecting dots and fastening it to the loom—the representation of the world where every life resided. And she threaded Soren’s on the same loom, her fingers much more graceful as she took her time to listen well.

“There,” she said, pointing to the place where the crisscrossed scarlet thread began to unravel.  “Chaos. An ill fate.”

She could still see the way his face changed as he registered what he saw. From warm and feeling to cold and hard. His jaw clenched, his brown eyes closed to the truth of it as he thought. There was no denying it. It was in the threads. And already his thoughts, which had been so open to her, grew quieter.

“And you’re sure it would be my fault?” he asked, his deep voice rough.

Irina nodded. She had never been one to lighten the load of the truth. And it always surprised her that Soren liked her for being honest.

“So…we have to stop.” And he licked his lips, as if the words themselves were poison.

Pulled from her thoughts. Irina wiggled beneath Cia’s arm as the girl left a pool of saliva on her shoulder. Then she sunk back into her memories like a swimmer who’d given up trying to float.

She reached out to touch his hand, and she still remembered the sting of him pulling it away.

He said it like it was so final.

“We have to stop.”

Because Irina was full of potential. And an Ill Fate brought disaster. An Ill Fate created room for death when there should be only life. They unraveled threads, took futures apart and rerouted them, changed destinies. Where a Fate predicted how a life should go, an Ill Fate forced it to change its course. They were criminals. Outlaws. Rebels. And as far as the Cloak of Cathedrals was concerned, they were worth nothing more than the effort it took to hunt them down and kill them.

Irina wanted to smirk at Soren then. But when she spoke, it hurt. “You think you can just spend the rest of your life without me? You think it’s that easy?”

“Doesn’t matter what I think.” He stood up and nudged the loom aside with the toe of his shoe. “We have to stop.”

Irina’s thoughts were yanked from her as Cia tugged on their blanket. She rolled over in bed, stretching her cat-like body and curling up in the covers so there was no way Irina would ever wrestle them away from her. She rolled into them until she was invisible and planted her face, nose-first, into her pillow.

You can do this, Irina told herself. Just go to sleep. You don’t need Cia to keep you from messing up. You’re  a big girl. Just go to sleep.

Irina’s bare feet on the stone of the cathedral floor.

Her night dress was hardly enough to keep her warm, but she hadn’t thought through her choice in garment. It hung off her in gray so thin anyone who looked might have seen through. She walked the church halls, trying not to let her steps echo, and she touched her hands to the rough walls so she could find her way in the dark. Down the wide hallways, the stained glass was dull and plain, no light shining through to bring them to life. She’d always loved to watch the figures dance and sparkle when the touchlights were on, but she hardly noticed their lifeless shapes as she hurried. She was already breaking a dozen rules by being out past curfew, undressed, unchaperoned in the boys’ wing. But all of that paled against the danger she’d be in if she made it to where she was going.

The closer she got to his room, the more she could feel him. The rhythm of her heartbeat altered, speeding up and slowing down so it could match his pace. It made her dizzy, breathless. Still, she moved faster, until, before she could control herself, she was running down the last few halls, abandoning the walls that were showing her the way and following a different sort of guide, a compass that would not let her forget where her true north lied.

And before she could get to his room, before she could knock and his door and bury herself in the familiarity of his sheets and the smell of his skin, she ran into someone. They collided so hard that she almost cried out into the dark.

“Irina?” He hissed, helping her up and feeling for her with strong hands. “Is that you?”

Of course it’s me. God, you’re so loud.

What are you doing here? You’re supposed to be asleep.

What are you doing here? You’re supposed to be asleep.

I was…I was sleeping.

You don’t seem asleep to me, Soren.

I was headed back to my room.

Your room is the other way. You’re such a terrible liar.

I am a fantastic liar. You’re throwing me off my game.

Admit it. You were coming to see me.

No.

Irina took his hands in hers, slid them up his arms. The iron work had made him stronger, his muscles firmer than the last time they were together. They could never make it long without at least talking. But this…this was reckless. Touching him. It felt like she was melting, like her legs couldn’t hold her up. I love you, she wanted to say. I love you and I want you and I love you.

What are you thinking? Feels interesting.

She shook her head. Shut up. Don’t make fun of me.

He put his hand to her cheek, and she couldn’t believe how large they were, his fingertips reaching back into her hair. His palms were rough, proof of the years he’d worked with forming the metal looms. He rubbed his thumb against her cheek. You should go back to bed.

His hands lingered. Irina tilted her head so she could kiss his palm, just a moment. It was a mistake. You have to stop, she told herself. She shut her eyes, gripping his hands, tracing his knuckles because he hadn’t pulled away from her yet.

Will you walk me to my room, Soren?

No.

She swallowed her disappointment and it made her throat sore. She missed him, missed the Soren who could never say no to her, no matter what she asked for. Goon night, then. I love you.

Without light, he couldn’t see how wide her eyes opened when the words slipped out. They weren’t supposed to say it. Those were the rules they’d set up for each other, since the headmaster wouldn’t intervene. The rules were supposed to keep her safe. Minimal contact, no kissing, no professions of love. They were acquaintances. Nothing more. Still, she hoped he would slip up too and say it back. Just once so she could know he was hurting too, maybe even as much as she was.

But Soren said nothing. So Irina turned around and started the walk back to her room, the back of her neck burning even though she knew there was no way he was looking at her in the dark of the hall.

Stupid girl. She knew he wouldn’t break the rules they’d agreed on. She knew. But still… Have you no self-control? She could devote hours and hours of her life to meditation and possibly the most difficult job in Od. She could withstand the pain of threading day after day. But she couldn’t go to bed without talking to him, without him filling up her whole mind.

The headmaster should have sent us away. He should have been strict, should have mandated separation. But he thought his two most prudent students could handle their own boundaries. And, of course, sending Irina away meant the cathedral losing her. Their competitors would gain a star in the making. They don’t know how weak I really am. She stood outside of her door, her eyes closed, thinking about how badly she didn’t want to crawl into bed with Cia.

Someone grabbed her arm.

He turned her around, and pulled her mouth to his. He breathed into the kiss, his hands on her cheeks again, and his chest pressed against hers. The stone wall was cold against her nearly bare back but she didn’t care. She tugged at his shirt, her own fingers covered in hundreds of slivered scars from pulling threads.

He kissed her harder, trailing down to her neck, and then back to her waiting lips. She felt her heart, and his, and knew he’d lost his mind. Neither of them could think. It was as if a levy had broken free and there was nothing they could do, no way they could stop.

“Stop!”

Cia had to wedge herself between them with her tiny body, and still they wouldn’t let go of each other. So the little Fate stomped on Soren’s foot and slapped Irina’s cheek before she pried them apart with her elbows.

“Get in there,” she hissed, pushing her roommate towards the door. “Sit down, both of you.”

And when Soren tried to sit next to Irina on the bed, Cia cursed and punched his arm. “Get away from her! Sit on the floor, you.” Cia ran her hands through her hair, her freckles disappearing as her face flushed. “God, what is wrong with you two?”

Soren sat on the floor, his back against the closed door and his elbows resting on his knees. He rubbed his eyes, as if he was trying to calm himself down.

Cia stood between them, her arms crossed. “First of all, we are all—all three of us—going to get kicked out if Soren wanders into the girl’s wing like this. Especially if you take each other’s close off in the hallway. Second, what the hell happened to your rules? I thought you had rules? Actually, I know you had rules. And third—”

“I love you, too.” Soren looked past Cia and to Irina, who had been staring at him anyways. “Just so you know for sure.”

Cia threw her hands in the air in frustration, but Irina smiled and smoothed down her dark hair.

I could kind of tell.

Your fault.

She laughed, and the whole world felt lighter. You broke the rules.

He grinned back at her. I hate the rules.

You made them, you idiot.

“Stop. Stop that.” Cia wagged her finger at them. “I know you’re talking to each other. I can see your eyes twinkling.” Cia marched over to Soren. “Come with me.”

She pulled him up—as much as she could since he was three times her size—and shoved him to the bathroom. She pulled the door tight behind her.

“What are you doing, Soren?”

He leaned over the sink and shook his head. “I’m sorry.”

Cia crossed her arms again. “I know you love her, Soren, and I love her too. That’s why we can’t let her get hurt. You made a promise, remember?”

He nodded.

“Then leave. Leave her. The both of you can move on.”

“Maybe she would. But I can’t.”

Cia put a hand on her friend’s shoulder. “Maybe she can. If you give her a chance.” She took a deep breath. “Just close your eyes, Soren, and think about what it would be like if she was an Ill Fate. The Cloak would hunt her. And they would hurt her. And they would kill her—”

“Okay.”

“Really? Okay? Because you could already have done that to her. Just now. By being irresponsible.”

He stood up and glanced at himself in the mirror. “I’ll…I’ll go.” Selfish. Loving her was selfish.

Cia chewed on her lip for a second. She wasn’t even in love with Soren—in fact she was the one who wished he would leave, but her stomach fell. “Good. When?”

“One more year.”

“Soren…come on.”

He nodded, and he looked like he might be sick. “Okay.” His words sounded sticky. “Okay, I’ll send out applications tomorrow.”

“Tonight.”

He splashed water from the rose bowl on his face and breathed into the towel. “Tonight.”

Cia wiped sweaty palms on the robe she wore over her night dress. “I’ll tell her.”

“God, Cia, let me tell her. It should come from me.”

He met his friend’s eyes and missed the days where they could be happy about knowing each other. She looked away. “One minute, Soren. Or I’m calling the headmaster.”

And she closed the door, so Soren could figure out the right thing to do.

When he left the bathroom, Irina was still sitting on the bed, wide eyes staring at him, shadowy in the touchlight. The strap of her night dress slipped from her shoulder, and she adjusted it with a quick hand.

Beautiful, he thought. But he wasn’t supposed to say it.

“Ri…” he started.

Irina nodded. “You’re leaving me.”

Soren wanted to cross the room and lift her chin, tell her something inappropriate, something that would make her smile. She was so serious sitting there, her arms loose in her lap, her back straight. But her braids had unraveled and her hair flowed around her. He’d always liked it like that way best. Untamed.

“You don’t have to say it like that. I’m not leaving you. I’m just…leaving.”

She stood up and walked towards him, hugging herself so he couldn’t see through her night dress. “I’m not mad at you, Soren. It was selfish of you to stay here another year. It was selfish of me to let you.” She was close to him, and the smell of her filled him up. Roses and threadwater. “I’ll have Cia trace my fate when you leave, to make sure…”

“No.” He put a firm hand to his temple, as if he had a headache, as if he knew she was being brave in front of him, but the minute he left she’d fall apart and never work right again. As if he knew he was breaking her. “Let’s do it together, Ri. One more time.”

Irina chewed her lip as she frowned. I thought…

Well, I think…we should be selfish one more time.

And she smiled, the kind she used to give all the time. It made her dark hair and her perfect posture make sense—a light in the blackness.

The window?

He followed behind her and she slapped at him when he bumped into her on purpose. You’ll be the death of me, Soren Hayfer.

He stopped, before he hoisted her up, and brushed her hair aside so he could kiss her neck. One more hour won’t kill you.

Ill Fate – Episode 2

Episode 2

Irina folded her day dress, making sure the plain linen was smooth and without wrinkle as she placed it on the nightstand. She dipped her hands into the rosewater and splashed in on her face, patting her pale, smooth skin dry with her hand towel. She preferred the quiet of her room to the rest of the cavernous cathedral. It was small, no bigger than a closet, but she didn’t have to worry about running into the wrong people. The wrong person.

“There you are.”

Irina sighed at the words, not because she disliked her roommate, but because she had hoped she could be alone.

“I’ve been looking everywhere for you.” And Cia took Irina by the hands and pulled her over to the bed they shared. They sat down, and Cia tucked Irina’s dark hair behind her ears for her. “Tell me, how did it go?”

Irina frowned at her friend. It was hard to do, with Cia’s sweet brown curls and her freckled cheeks. “How did what go?”

Cia squeezed Irina’s shoulders. “The examination, Irina. Don’t be ridiculous. How did it go?”

“Oh.” She cleared her throat. It was so hard to pay attention to anything but the thudding of her heart in her chest. He must be walking by. I wonder where he’s going. To the library? No it’s too late for reading. She shook her head, hoping she could clear it. “I…did well.”

Cia scoffed and rolled hazel eyes. “You did not do ‘well.’ You were perfect. Did you even get one question wrong?”

Irina swallowed. Her mouth was dry. Why is my mouth so dry? “Yes. I mean…no. I didn’t get any wrong.”

Cia chuckled. “I knew it. And believe it or not, I think I passed, too.” She threw herself back on the bed, still in her day dress, and spread her arms like a star. “Graduation is so near. And then we’ll be free of this place. And you? You can work anywhere in the world you want. You don’t even have to apply. I bet you’ll be flooded with invitations as soon as the final grades are posted.”

“Yes, I’m sure I’ll be asked.” She was sure, because she’d seen it in her threads. Her talent was no surprise to her or anyone else who could see decently. Just like she knew Cia would be above average, that she’d land a happy job and meet a happy boy. They’d get married and have happy children. She’d be an old lady when she died in her sleep. Old and…happy.

“You’re threading in your head again, aren’t you, Ri?”

“It distracts me.”

Cia nodded, her chin dimpling as she frowned. “It’s just a rough patch. You’ve been bumping into him more, what with testing going on. But soon all that will be over and you’ll be so far away from each other you won’t even remember his name.” She smiled as she left the bed to brush her hair in the mirror.

Her words were supposed to make things better, to ease Irina’s frustration. But it only made her want to tear her own heart apart. She would leave him. She would have to try never to see him again. She would be a good Fate and follow her threads how they were meant to be.

Irina lay in bed awake while Cia snored lightly, a little smile on her face even while she slept. She rolled away, facing the other direction at last and Irina found her chance. She kissed Cia’s forehead and hurried out of bed, pausing at the door with her fingers hovering above the handle.

Don’t, Irina. Don’t. Just go back to bed.

But she could hear him thinking, the far away buzzing of his words in his own mind. The sound of it leaked into her own thoughts, as if they were only a room apart and she could hear him through the wall—muffled, but there.

She knew she shouldn’t talk to him. She knew it.

I can’t sleep.

Silence. He was thinking of what to do, thinking of her. He knew he shouldn’t answer. It’s late.

I know.

Get some rest.

They were keeping the sentences short, to the point. Even the conversation was a risk.

I’m trying, Soren.

He waited. He knew what she meant. She was trying to do the right thing, to protect herself and her future. It’s what they both wanted.

Try harder.

And he was gone.

The next morning she sat in the dining hall and swirled her smooth porridge, watching the light reflect off the back of her spoon. She propped her cheek up with her fist, slouching without meaning to. Her classmates filtered in and out, each in their day clothes—plain gray dresses or slacks and shirts. The graduates, very few in number, wore black, their collars low cut and more relaxed. The third years were in gray, the second years in blue, their buttons fastened up to their throats and their hair either shaved or in braids. The first years were in white, and their eyes were open a little too wide, as if they were perpetually lost.

One of them slid their tray in next to Irina’s and fumbled with her spoon before she made it all the way to her mouth. She stared at Irina with big blue eyes, her brown cheeks flushed.

“Is it okay if I sit here?” she asked, her voice soft and hushed.

“You already are, so it must be.” Irina was surprised at how blunt her words came off compared to the first year. But she knew with time, if the girl could survive the program, she’d lose the pretty chime in her speech and it would sound plain and hard and to the point.

The first year tugged at her stiff collar, at the rigid sleeves of her shirt and slacks, and ate for a little bit, her lips meeting her porridge. She stopped and set the spoon down. “Forgive me, but you look so much like—” She cleared her throat and shook her head, her braids flopping about her ears. “I mean, I heard Irina Glass went to this school, but it’s just a rumor. And I don’t mean to be rude, but you look a lot like her.”

Irina frowned at the girl, sitting up a little straighter. She tucked the flyaways from her braid behind her ears. “Why would that be rude?”

“Oh. I don’t know. I was just…”

“No, it’s fine.” Irina held her hand up to the girl. “You didn’t mean offense. I wish I didn’t have to be her most of the time, anyways.”

The first year’s mouth fell open, her meal slipping around inside it. “You’re her?”

“Sure.”

“And you’re here? Sitting in the cafeteria? Eating breakfast? With me?”

Irina almost chuckled. “I eat breakfast just like everyone else.”

The girl finally pulled her mouth shut and swallowed. She blushed at her own behavior, tinting her honey cheeks. “Well, I hope I get to see you work before you leave us, Miss Glass. It would be an honor—“

Irina lost track of the girl’s words. They faded into nothing.

He walked in, his shoulder’s straight and his chin down, as if he was thinking. He was always thinking. She could hear him fussing around in his head all the time. He skipped his place in the line when the other students insisted he cut in front of them. He nodded his thanks and grabbed a tree fruit. Somehoe the movement made his muscles stretch beneath his shirt. He paused, said hello to someone. Sat down at the table nearest the door.

He had a book in hand, and he put his shoes up on the chair opposite him, flipping through the pages and taking half the apple in one bite. He chewed like that, his head bent and his eyes scanning the lines of text, his jaw clenching and unclenching.

What is he reading? Irina could find out so easily if she wanted to. A quick knock on the door of his mind. But she held back. She watched him instead.

He glanced up as a friend walked in. He smiled at him. They shared a joke. His grin was bright, especially in contrast with his black day clothes. Black, for a graduate. He’d done well. His tests had been held a year before hers but he hadn’t left the cathedral yet. Surely he had job offers. Surely, there were dozens of private parties who could use his services. But he stayed. Why?

You know why.

She jumped, spilling most of her ice cold porridge onto the table. She wiped it up with her napkin, trying not to look completely insane in front of the first year.

What are you doing? We’re not supposed to talk.

I had to. You were staring.

You were reading. I was curious.

He flipped to the cover of his book, still keeping his eyes on it, making sure no one knew they were speaking. Durand. 13th century. It’s boring. You’d love it.

She smiled. It felt good to smile. Like her heart was wiggling free, cracking the icicles off and inching closer to the fire.

“Is it true?” The first year cut them off, leaning in closer to Irina across the table. “Forgive me, but is it true you’re going to pledge to be lifebound? I thought maybe it was another rumor.”

Irina drummed her fingers on the table. There were always rumors about her floating around. She was one of the most admired scholars in all of Op. “Who told you that?” she asked the girl.

She shrugged, her eyes on her food for a moment. “It’s just what I heard.”

“I haven’t even graduated, yet alone decided what to do with my life.” Irina leaned in to the girl. “And I know this is your first year, but it really isn’t nice to ask such personal question to someone you don’t know, rumor or not.”

The girl blushed so deep it might have stained her cheeks crimson. “Oh.”

Irina sat back. Even though she’d kept her voice down, most of the cafeteria was staring, listening. She couldn’t get a word in without people hanging on it, dissecting it, trying to learn her secrets. If Irina so much as sneezed, someone would pick up her tissue and try to extract her talent by sleeping with it beneath their pillow. Anything to have the skill she had. Anything to be her.

“You can all go back to eating now,” Irina said to the room. “I’m not giving her the secrets to the craft. I promise.”

And they resumed, all a little embarrassed that they’d been so nosy. Irina gathered her things and stood, tossing her braid over her shoulder.

“You have a name, first year?”

“It’s Milan.”

Irina motioned for her to come closer, then she cupped her hand and whispered into the girl’s ear. She didn’t say anything, really. But that didn’t matter. She pulled away. “Welcome to Cathedral Rei, Milan.”

And as she left, a dozen scholars scuttled over to see what information she’d left with the timid little first year. Milan blushed and toyed with her food, shooting a grateful glance at Irina’s back as she walked out.

That was sweet. She’ll be queen of the first years for sure.

Shut up.

You can whisper to me, if you want.

Irina stopped in the hallway, her stomach turning over, her chest pulling tight as she breathed. Of course she wanted to. That’s all she wanted. Seriously, Soren. Shut up.

And he did.

The Writing Process Blog Hop

Today I get to be a part of an awesome blog hop. So you get to see the rather mysterious and sometimes frightening inside of my brain. Much thanks to the author who got me involved, Shari Sakurai. She wrote ‘Demon’s Blood,’ to be released in print July 19th. WOOT! Go Shari! Check her out and let her know she rocks via her website and her Goodreads page.

Now, let’s do this thang!

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What am I working on?

 

THE SEQUEL TO CORE!!! I am so excited it’s coming together. I’ve been chipping away at it every day I can, and I’m pleased to say I’m a fourth (almost a third) of the way done. The first chunk is already with my glorious editor and I’ll have feedback on that as I continue to craft the goods. My goal is to have it out this November. And let me tell you…it’s goooood, guys.

 

How does my work differ from others in its genre?

 

I love movies. And I dabble in screenwriting. So I think I tend to pace my YA novels differently than most. I’ve gotten reviews that point out how something is “always happening.” It creates an edge-of-your-seat effect that most rather enjoy. When I write, I see it in my head like it’s already a movie, and if my characters are just lounging around yapping, my movie brain goes “this is boring, Combs! Make something happen NOW!”

 

 

Why do I write what I do?

 

I write for young adults because I want them to write, too. My greatest dream is that someone will pick up one of my books, love it, and think “I want to do this too. I CAN do this too.” I write for the future dreamers. I write for that “one.” I was that one once.

 

How does my writing process work?

 

When I wrote “Core” and the System, I had no process. I had time in buckets, so I just wrote until my fingers went numb. Now, I have a baby boy, so I’m a bit more structured. Right now, as I type this, it’s 6am. I write until 8:30 when he wakes up. Then, I market during his naps and write again at 9:30 when he goes to bed.

A lot of research goes into my books. For example, I have thirty pages of dragon lore research I did for “Core.” And I actually had to have my little brother walk me through how to assemble and fire a sniper rifle about a dozen times so I could write one scene in The System.

Once draft one is done, it goes to my number one editor (my best friend), and she dissects the content line by line. Then I rewrite, usually from scratch. That draft two goes out to a few more editors, then I revise. Draft three goes to my beta-readers. Revise one more time. Proofreaders take me to draft four. And there we go! A few more tweaks and the final version is ready! Phew!

It’s a lot lot lot of work. But how I LOVE what I do! This is my dream. And I get to do it every single day. So check out “Core” and “the System” before you gear up for next week’s blog hoppers!

Introducing…

 

Madhuri Blaylock, author of The Sanctum trilogy.  Love on her and read her stuff, including book one, “The Girl,” and her new release, “The Boy!” Goodreads and her website.

 

Kyra Hylland, author of author of “Sarya’s Song,” and many other crazy fantastical and highly original romances. Give her some love and read her stuff! Goodreads and her website.

Smashwords!

So, I’ve finally discovered smashwords and have uploaded my book. Now if only I could figure out how to convert my book cover so that the image suits their super picky autovetter system, I’ll be golden.

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Core is on sale! Also, my print amazon copy has reached #31 in Sci-fi & Fantasy! I’m excited about this, especially since I haven’t come close to ranking in months. Now to wiggle my way back up to the top 5. Marketing sucks, but hopefully it’ll pay off soon.

Also, Jaxter is doing great. He just had his 2 month check up and he’s a perfect little chunker. I’ve started reading to him every day and, of course, he loves it–because he’s his mama’s son! He’ll be scribbling out crayon novels in no time.

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