Hello again to fantasy author Kasia Bacon! I’m delighted to welcome her to the blog, since her last visit supplied my holiday reading list with two fun stories. I’m rather interested to see what she has up her sleeve today… since I know there’s a sneak peek involved. 🙂
I’d hoped to release my fantasy novelette, Twenty-One Arrow Salute, around Valentine’s Day. So, of course, life disagreed (“What? You’ve made plans? Bhahahha. I don’t think so.”). And as it stands, I’m still a chapter and a half away from typing The End. When I requested this slot over at Jackie’s excellent blog, it was with the intention to show off my shiny new release, bells, whistles and all.
Oh, well. backpedals and recalculates the route
The next best thing I can offer is a sneak peek at the opening scene.
Twenty-One Arrow Salute—which tells the story of a Queen’s Guard, Verhan Tŭrryés, and takes place in the Elven capital, Asirhwӱn—could be described as a standalone. However, even though it focuses on a different set of characters, it follows the events of The Mutt and The Highlander. Those who are familiar with the first two books in the Order Series will no doubt remember Verhan, Ervyn’s exasperating, chatty cousin. Those who are not might choose to read them beforehand, if only for a tad bit of context.
Writing a dialogue-driven character was a new experience, given that I usually choose (for my sins) to get involved with emotionally stunted and verbally constipated heroes. Verhan is also way more immature than any of my other lads—a bit of a moron, frankly—which explains the Young Adult vibe to the story.
I don’t know if it can be called the Verhan Effect or not, but my husband tells me that I swear and mumble to myself a lot more than usual while working on his POV.
I hope you’ll enjoy this exclusive (unedited!) snippet.
The jab to my chin came from nowhere, snapping my head to one side. It hurt, damn it. Tears stained my vision. I staggered, jumping away from the window of the bathhouse and down onto a gritty path beneath it.
“Verhan Tŭrryés, you sick bastard.”
I sighed. If I had a silver every time I found myself at the receiving end of that phrase, I’d be the richest Dark Elf in the Highlands. I moved my jaw experimentally, relieved to ascertain that its hinges held fine, and faced my squad’s leader, Achiah.
Considering the thin press of her lips and black slits of her eyes glaring daggers at me, she didn’t stand there to ask me to go to the Archers’ Fete with her. More was the pity, as I still didn’t have a partner and would hardly refuse her. The girl had mighty sweet lips on her: shaped like a ripe, freshly peeled fruit of pashjia, just as red and juicy. And, my gods, the perkiest pair of—
“What the fuck is wrong with you?” My gaze must’ve wandered too low because she pointed her two splayed fingers towards her eyes in a jerky look-up-here gesture. “Didn’t I catch you peeping at the girls last bathing day? Now you’re back spying on the lads? Have you got no shame?”
“Not a great amount, no,” I admitted with calm. “Neither do I have a set preference.” That was true, too. Girls, boys, trolls—anything with a pulse—I didn’t mind.
“Wait, isn’t it the officers’ turn to bathe?” she said, climbing up to the window herself to steal a brief glance. When she descended, her face lit up like the sky on the Night of Lights. “Oh, this is too precious. You’re salivating over Captain Akhini?”
As if she could blame me. The man’s buttocks, round and firm, looked like a masterpiece some besotted artist carved from a smooth, creamy marble.
She clucked her tongue. “You’re a disgrace to the uniform, Verhan. Start acting like a Queen’s Guard for fuck’s sake, since by some miracle, you are one. I won’t have anyone mess around in my squad.” She paused for effect and squinted at me. “If I report you to the Commander, you’ll be ears deep in shit.”
Uh-huh. That I couldn’t dispute. To start with, the accurate word to describe Commander Yennés’ sense of humour would be negligent. He’d already displayed, well, twitchy behaviour around me. People tended to have such a reaction for reasons I never understood. Secondly, the Commander’s jealousy over Captain Akhini, his long-term partner, had been legendary. All in all, it promised me a bleak outcome. “I’m sensing an alternative somewhere there,” I said carefully. “What do you want, Achiah?”
Thanks for reading!
If you’re interested in the Order Series you can find it on Amazon, Amazon UK and Kindle Unlimited.
A Dark-Elf archer. A half-breed assassin. Soldiers. Soulmates. Lovers. #The OrderSeries
I, Ervyn Morryés of the Black Mountain clan, know all about control.
As the only fair-haired Dark Elf in the Highlands, I had to learn to control my fists and my temper in the face of derision.
To become the best archer amongst my peers, I had to learn to control my breathing and my movements.
But the day the half-breed called Lochan Féyes arrived at the training camp, my discipline faltered. Because—sweet gods—when I am around that aloof, blue-eyed assassin, my need is uncontrollable.
I, Lochan of the famed Féyes clan, know all about fighting.
As a half-breed Elf, I have struggled against prejudice and feelings of inadequacy.
A recluse by nature, I have battled my aversion to touch and interaction with others.
To become an assassin of The Order, I have learnt to overcome the limitations of my mind and body.
But denying the power Ervyn Morryés holds over me might be the one fight I lose. The truth is—damn it all—the relentless Highlander brings me to my knees.
About Kasia Bacon
A linguist and an avid reader with a particular fondness for fantasy and paranormal genres, KASIA BACON lives in London with her husband. When not tearing her hair out over a translating project, she writes stories about the shenanigans of emotionally constipated assassins and sexy Elves. Otherwise, she can be found shaking her loins at a Zumba class, binging on anime or admiring throwing knives on Pinterest. She has a mild coffee and lemon tart addiction. A lover of MMA and Muay Thai, she also enjoys nature and the great outdoors. She dreams of becoming independently wealthy, leaving the city and moving into her wooden mini-manor—located in the heart of stunning forests resembling those of the Elven Country depicted in her tales.
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