Story Excerpts

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Sweet Saturday Sample

Another cut scene of For the Sake of One Lost.  Enjoy!


“That’s my slave you’re sitting on!” Djadao's sandals crunched the sand scattered across the pavement, punctuating Pearl's frantic cries for help.  “By the gods, you were trying to steal her from me!”

“I prefer the word ‘rescue’.”

“Well, if it isn’t Helmsman Bradley Trey of the Classis Alexandrina, dressed up like an Egyptian!”  Djadao laughed and hooked his hands on padded hips.  “What are you doing in these parts?  Spying for your prefect?  I shall petition him and make you pay for your audacity.”

Trey shifted to pin Pearl’s arms and better restrict her movements.  “There’s no need to bring the prefect into this.  I’m willing to pay you for her.” A hot blast of wind peppered him with sand, and his wig shielded his eyes.

Djadao wiped his face and snorted.  “Now that you’ve been caught!  She’s not for sale.”

“Name your price.”  He moved Pearl’s wrists to one hand and fumbled with a cloth pouch at his waist. She was strong for a girl. He forced her arms down to her backside, trying to keep from hurting her.

“I plan to sell this girl to your prefect for ten gold aurei!  Hardly within a helmsman’s budget.”

Trey put the pouch between his teeth and used his free hand to draw several gold coins from it.  “You said ten gold aurei?”

The fat man’s beady eyes sparkled at the sight of the gold.  “Give me twenty and she’s yours.  It is fitting, yes?  You pay double the price for the pain you have caused me!”

“Twenty it is, then," Trey mumbled through his clenched teeth, tossing the coins in the sand between them. A goat bleated.

Djadao frowned.  “What is the girl to you that you’re willing to pay so much for her?  Did you know that she has red hair?”  He reached for Pearl’s wig.

Trey caught his hand, letting the purse drop from his mouth.  “Yes, I know that she has red hair.”

Djadao grunted and snatched his hand back.  “Red-haired people are evil because they are favored by Set.  Aren’t you afraid that she may be a witch or a devil worshipper?”

“No, I’m not.  That’s Egyptian superstition, and as you so cleverly deduced, I am not an Egyptian.”

“May the gods overlook your arrogance.”

“And your greed.” Trey retrieved his purse.


Patricia Kiyono said...

More mysteries! Why is Trey willing to pay so much for her? Does he know her already? Is he really her rescuer, or is she in for more trouble? Interesting story.

Loree Huebner said...

Gwen, this is a very clever story! Very good writing. I went back and read the beginning again.

I might use a different term like deviltry for devil worshipper...those words just kind of jumped out at me, just a thought, but otherwise...good job.

Sandy Nachlinger said...

I'm curious about the relationship between Djadao and Pearl. Are they siblings? Lovers? I also want to know where Djadao got so many gold coins and why he's willing to pay so much for Pearl. Lots going on here to keep me interested.

Lindsay said...

The mystery deepens beautifully

Gwendolyn Gage said...

Hello my friends! I just returned from a conference and I am beat. Thanks for your encouraging comments and continued interest!

This excerpt was taken from chapter four -- I've skipped 42 pages in between this week's and last week's samples, and I apologize if my jumping around is confusing. I hesitate to post much of this story on my blog because I'm using it for contest entries, and preparing to query the manuscript again. :-)

J. Gunnar Grey said... we're being left in suspense? Oh, that's not nice at all!

Gwendolyn Gage said...

Yeah, Gunnar, I'm sharing your sentiment. So I think I will hold off on posting any more excerpts of this story. Don't worry, I have another ms I can entertain you with on Saturdays. :-)

Susan said...

But we want more of this one! Great writing, Gwen:) You've pulled me in and I can't say this is a genre I'd typically pick up. Nice!

Gwendolyn Gage said...

I'm glad you like it, Susan, and I'm doubly blessed to hear that I've hooked you on a story that isn't your usual cup of tea. :-)

My heart is in this story, and I would like to post more samples of it. Alas, it seems some of my Saturday readers aren't happy with a 42 page gap, and I just can't bring myself to post large portions in sequential order when I'm querying and using it to submit to contests.

You'll like the new story samples. "The Countess of Altamont" is historical romance set in the Georgian England period. :-)

Gabrielle Meyer said...

Love this excerpt! This is my first glimpse of these characters and this plot and I have so many wonderful questions floating around in my brain. I love the flow of the dialogue and the rich imagery. I feel like I jumped into a far off place many, many years ago. I am looking forward to reading more.

Thank you for taking time to answer my questions on posting excerpts on my blog and for the link to a copyright location. Good luck with the contest and querying this manuscript!

Gwendolyn Gage said...

Thanks Gabrielle! I love this scene too, but I've decided to cut it from my manuscript. Up until this scene, the book has been written in Pearl's POV, and I'm thinking this is a bad time to start writing in another character's POV. (Besides, you can't really tell whose POV I'm speaking from -- Trey's or Djadao's.) I've rewritten it from Pearl's POV, and decided to re-post this version so I don't have to waste it. ;-)