In the past, my style was to create the scene and then have the characters play their parts. Recently, I've discovered a beautiful fluidity that comes when combining the developing scene with the acting characters. I am now finding peace with my skill and the flow of my story.
I am pleased to say that I have "finally" finished my second edit of book two. I am now working on the third edit before I will permit anyone to read it. However, here is a sample. Enjoy and please critique!
My heart was throbbing so loud I could hear it in my head. I glanced back to the collection of young men, each eyeing me with longing interest. My instinct to fight dissipated as the urge to flee overwhelmed me. “Get me out of here,” I pleaded with Eamon.
He grumbled and patted my hand that clutched his arm tightly. "I anticipated this, but King Sander would not listen. Once you were given a noble title, you became a prized asset to other provinces."
"I can’t do this,” I said and whirled to leave, nearly colliding into a young man dressed in exotic attire. His dark skin contrasted with the sleeveless cream colored coat that hung to his knees. Red fabric wrapped about his slender waist like a belt. And his unusual style of wide trousers were tucked into leather boots that harbored a peculiar curve at the tip. A vibrant blue cloth, held secure by a multicolored headband, sat upon his brow, framing his slender face and chiseled jaw line.
He seemed startled at first, but smiled warmly as he gazed upon my features with honey colored eyes shaded by thick, black brows. Although he was rather attractive, I would have immediately rebuffed this man if King Sander himself had not accompanied him. This young man was from the kingdom of Toleah.
"Lady Keatep," Sander began. "This is Amir Leander Polusmed.”
"Lady Keatep," the young man addressed me with a thick accent and tipped his head in greeting. “You honor me with dance?” He held out his dark hand for me to take.
I bowed to him stiffly and looked back at Eamon who merely folded his arms and narrowed his eyes at the foreign noble with a stoic expression. With every fiber of my being, I fought the urge to flee and took Leander's hand. He guided me to the dance floor where we began an unsteady dance. The foreign noble was unaccustomed to our music and stepped on my foot twice before he finally halted and laughed at himself. “I not make good impression with dance.”
I smiled in spite of myself.
He gripped my hand tightly. "Come."
Reluctantly, I followed him from the great hall to the balcony where other couples were enjoying the refreshing air. Thin clouds veiled the pale moonlight, casting a misty glow upon the landscape below.
“You like be soldier?” he asked as we reached the railing.
“I am good at it, if that is what you mean,” I answered.
He nodded. “I never learn to use sword,” he mused. He was making light conversation, and I was not particularly interested in it. I wanted to leave. “You teach me someday?”
My brows furrowed at his insinuation of having contact after tonight. “I’m not sure I understand.”
“You know who I am?” he asked.
“I’m sorry. I do not.”
He nodded. “I am Amir of Toleah. Or how you say it, Prince of Toleah.”
I felt as if a blacksmith’s hammer had struck my chest like an anvil.