Archive for January, 2013

The Tower

Posted in Fairy Tales, Fiction on January 30th, 2013 by Annabelle – 24 Comments

This, she thought with a wince, might really be the worst of the things she had to hold against her parents about this whole process.  She experimentally took a hand away from one ear just in time to hear a particularly off note be followed by a sharp twang and a startled squawk.  Broken lute string?  She had given up hoping that would shut him up.

The tower thing was ridiculous all around, and she had plenty of things to say about the arrangements for her so-called comfort if she ever got the chance.  She was beyond sick of looking at the walls in here and so bored that nearly anything would have been an improvement.  But this?

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Trifecta: First Blood

Posted in Calere, Fiction on January 28th, 2013 by Annabelle – 36 Comments

“Hang in there, Dane.  We’ll be there soon.”  There was no more response than the last three times.  Cy told himself it was probably a good thing that Dane had passed out.   Easier that way.

Cy winced as the wagon jolted and his fingers, slippery with blood, slid across the increasingly saturated pad above Dane’s left hip.  He swore quietly.  Dane was looking far too white, and as for the wound, Cy was afraid to lift up the pad again to look.  The mouth of the wound had been ragged after the captain had pulled the arrow out, and the blood was still coming no matter how hard he pressed.  Cy was far from sure that yanking the arrow that way had been the right thing to do — it was bleeding so much — but he had no idea what else they could have done.

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The Inquisition

Posted in Fiction, Tacar on January 24th, 2013 by Annabelle – 8 Comments

The servant quietly closed the door behind her, leaving behind a motionless tableau: the Emperor’s first wife, Lady Cahlila, and three teenaged girls standing before her in a line.  Raicha tried not to let her eyes drop to the mosaic under her feet.  It was a fine example, three centuries old, but she’d seen it before, and as Camilia was always saying, showing guilt was as bad as getting caught.

Cahlila leaned back in her chair and gave them a considering look from those famously brilliant eyes.  Camilia, next to Raicha, met the look evenly, nearly identical eyes showing nothing but polite inquiry.  The corner of her mother’s mouth lifted slightly.  Camilia’s half-sister Sai, standing on Camilia’s other side, stood straight and tall.  Raicha envied her ease.

“Lady Dahla had a very bad reaction to one of her paints this morning.”  They had known that.  Rumors in the hallways varied, but the overall trend suggested that she had a face full of hives and was refusing to come out of her rooms.

“Cosmetic creams go bad so quickly in the summer,” Camilia murmured sympathetically.  Her mother clearly did not believe that for a second, but faint amusement said it had been an acceptable parry.  “And she needs so many of them.”  That had been almost inaudible but Cahlila’s lips twitched.

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Posted in Calere, Fiction on January 17th, 2013 by Annabelle – 8 Comments

“You did that?”  Cy looked dubiously at a length of fabric so sheer that he could almost see through it and then at the sister who was holding it.  She was twelve.

“Don’t touch it!”  Make that twelve and bossy.

“I wasn’t going to.”  Cy looked guiltily at his callused hands.  He’d been a disaster with the finer cloths even before he’d joined up, and now?  Five years of continuous sword drills had left him with hands that would snag silk from three feet away.

A snicker came from the doorway.  “Eleven years of age and all that military training and Cala’s still in charge, huh?”  Their brother Brev, nineteen and the sanest person in the family, leaned against the doorframe, grinning.

“Strategic choices,” Cy responded promptly.  “We pick our battlefields.”

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Trifecta: The Frog Prince

Posted in Fairy Tales, Fiction on January 16th, 2013 by Annabelle – 15 Comments

The frog contemplated the golden ball.  It glittered through the murky water, half-buried in the black silt of the pond’s bottom.  He could hear the princess crying above, her voice weirdly distorted by the water but still distinguishable.  The wavering image on the surface showed him a green dress and dark red hair.  Red.  Never his favorite.

He swam over and prodded the ball with one sticky toe.  It was his way out of this mess, he supposed.  Back to the old life of flavored ices and servant girls, assuming he could avoid marrying the weeper.  He slowly blinked the nictitating membrane across his eye, the best he could do for a nostalgic sigh in this clammy body.  It had been a good life, if not useful.  He’d been an idle prince at best, years from responsibility in a peaceful kingdom that did just fine with no help from him.  Lovely.

His parents had put it about that it had been a spiteful fairy, he’d heard.  It probably sounded better than admitting that he’d insulted a witch on his way out of her rumpled cottage bed the second night, and that she had decided sliminess suited him.  True love.  He would have rolled his eyes if he could have.  But it only had to be true love for her, didn’t it?  That might not be so hard.

Red-headed, though.  He peered up through the water, trying to discern what sort of figure was attached to all that red hair.  Hm.  He pushed off of the golden ball with a back foot, and swished back into the depths of the pond.  Princesses were so much work, after all.  And perhaps a blonde would come by later.

Welcome to this week’s Trifecta Writing Challenge!  This week called for 33 to 333 words on the third definition of the word IDLE (adj.):IDLE

3: a : shiftless, lazy
b : having no evident lawful means of support

Thanks for reading!