This weeks snippet is the opening to my current WIP Godslayer – a YA fantasy. I’d love to know what you think of it!
‘You will never defeat me!’ The hero cried as he swung his blade at me. The clanging of swords echoed in the evening sky over the top of our shouts and grunts.
‘We’ll see about that,’ I blocked, feeling the strike reverberate up my arm and countered with a ferocious bite, jumping over a clump of heather, driving him backwards. Sweat slicked my pale skin and my blade felt heavier with every strike. Survival and victory pushed me on.
The hero’s breath was sharp as he struggled to defend against my onslaught, attacking with mad and careless strikes. He’d lost his precision and now relied on his anger to power through. It didn’t work. His shrill scream threw spittle at me and I knew he was spent. This was my chance.
Using all the power I had in my arm I struck with a back slash so close to the cross guard I nearly caught his fingers. His sword went spinning through the air and bounced into the heather with just a faint rustle. Zeig fell over and I thrust my blade into his face.
‘Now, pray to the Gods that I might spare you.’ I watched as his face began to scrunch up and turn bright pink and as his bottom lip quivered.
‘It’s not fair! I’m supposed to win, I’m the hero! I’m going to tell Mamma,’ my little brother scrambled to his feet and marched furiously over the heather field and towards our village. His balled fists held stiffly by his side. It was beginning to turn to dusk and our parents were expecting us home. I could already hear Mamma’s scolding, ringing high pitched through my ears, ‘be nice to your brother. Don’t wander too far, it’s dangerous.’
The evening air cooled my skin under the linen dress. I wasn’t ready to go home. Holding my wooden sword I began to practise strikes in the air. Jumping over clumps of brown heather and landing in the soft dirt. Zeig was the only one I could practise with but he was too slow. When training alone I could dance and spin as fast as my body was capable with only the sound of my breath and heart keeping rhythm.
Then I realised there was no birdsong.
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Such a cute snippet! 😀 I love how you bring us deep into the children’s roleplay and their day to day life, surprising us once… and twice at the end, at the lack of birds singing. That final sentence sent shivers down my spine. Good job!
Clare Davidson said:
I love how the opening gives a set of clues that prove to be wrong when the game is revealed. The only hint is the opening dialogue! I also liked the vivid description of the fight. The lack of birdsong was very ominous, too. Nice snippet, thanks for sharing it.
Ruth Ellen Parlour said:
Thanks very much! I’m glad you liked it 🙂