Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Nilos Meet The Heroines #MFRWHooks #BWLAuthor #fantasy #warrior #seer #healer


Join the authors at #MFRWHooks here for some great excerpts Mine is found at Nilos - Meet the Heroines.


Return to the world where Midra and Midran rule. The god and goddess have two faces. Midra is Mistrees on the Moon and also Mistress of the Dark. Midran is Lord of light and Lord of shadows. Rons ago, the Three and Three rose, Seer, Warrior, Healer defeated the Lord of Shadows, though remnants of his worshipers remain. As generations pass in the four nomes of the land only a few remain to honor the Mistress. Once again the followers of Midran prevail, leaving trouble to roil beneath the surface. Prophecies abound and many point to change. Will the Three and Three come again?


The babe cried. The Eldest held her against her shoulder and left the room. She encountered several midwives. “The child’s problems have resolved. Shiera is her name.” Hope rocketed like a shooting star. With one of the Three in her care, she walked to the room where the child’s mother rested.

“I have your daughter,” the Eldest said. “She is Shiera.”

Mother one held out her arms. “I like the name.” She laughed. “The priest was so sure I would have a son. Now he will leave me alone.” She cradled the babe in her arms.

To hide her smile, the Eldest turned away. One down. All I must do is wait.

“A girl. The Eldest will be pleased. Last night I sent a bird warning her how close to delivery you were.”

Those words panicked Andia. Though she’d wished for a few days to recover from the birth, the Eldest could arrive even as early as tomorrow. As soon as she reached her sleeping chamber she placed her daughter in the cradle. She sat at the table and wrote a note.

Her name is Dianan. Protect her from the midwives.

Tonight when her housemate slept, she would leave. In a flask she mixed enough restorative for the trip. Overuse could bring death but hiding her child encouraged her to take the risk.

The older woman brought dinner on a tray. Andia ate every bite of the huge meal. She returned to the bed to feed Dianan and to rest.

Long after the sun set, she dressed and swaddled her daughter in the blanket she had knit. Carrying her daughter in a sling across her chest, Andia pocketed the restorative and left the house. She walked the hardened dirt of the road glad of the full moon to guide the way. Night sounds from the forest brought comfort. Finally she reached the forge.

Before the next course appeared, the ache in her lower back spread to her belly clamping the muscles in a tightening band. She sucked in a breath. Too soon.

The moment of pain subsided. She rose. “Enjoy the meal. I must rest. My ride was long and tiring.” She hurried to her tent. Besa followed.

In the tent, she stripped off the robe. Another pain began. No, no. She sank on the sleeping mat and pulled her leather pouch toward her. Was it too late to drink the tea that might stop the labor?

Besa knelt beside her. “What should I do?”

Cala tried to send her for hot water to make a tea but a sharp pain followed by a second brought a gasp. “This daughter refuses to wait. You must help me. You know what to do.”

“Remind me.”

“Basin. Hot water. Empty blue pouch in the water and wash your hands and clean the knife. Have one of the servants bring two mugs of hit water after my daughter arrives. Hurry.”

Besa departed. Cala found the oiled leather and covered her sleeping mat. The contractions continued. Soon Besa returned. She washed her hands and knelt between Cala’s bent knees.

The pain escalated. Cala screamed and bore down. Besa lifted the babe. A loud cry sounded.

“What?” Cala asked.

“A daughter.”

“Give her to me.” Cala gasped as another strong sensation gathered. As Besa placed the infant in Cala’s chest, she screamed.

“A second child,” Besa said.

“Two girls.” Triumph rang in her voice. She laughed. One for me and one for the Eldest.

“No. A girl and a boy.” The older woman chuckled. “You will be busy.”

As Besa handed her the boy babe, Cala pushed him away. "He’s not mine.” She had no desire or need to waste her milk and love on a boy. The tiny girl in her arms deserved all she could give. At the end of this lunar she would have to leave her child with the servants so she could greet the Eldest with the sad news.


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Lisabet Sarai said...

It's a bit disorienting to switch focus character in the middle of an excerpt... but both bits are interesting.

Daryl Devoré said...

Oh no. She doesn't want the boy. Sad.

Tena Stetler said...

Oh, dear, twins and she is going to separate them. Poor little boy. What will become of him. Will she regret her decision? Good hook with two babies.