Rebecca Hamilton tagged me in the “look” challenge. The idea is that you open your manuscript, search for the first use of the word “look” and post the paragraphs surrounding it. I’m posting mine, then I’ll tag more authors at the end. I’ve selected a sample of my work in progress for this one.
Enjoy the teaser from Treason (Grimoire Trilogy #2)
Braeden shook his head. “You wanted to learn to fight, Kara. We haven’t trained today. We need to spar.”
She groaned. They’d been sparring. She’d healed dozens of bruises and even a broken finger, all evidence to the fact she was barely able to react in time to a sword coming at her face, much less a magical technique. She just wasn’t a very good fighter. Hell, she was arguably terrible.
He laughed. “You’ll never get better if you don’t practice. Come on.”
He drew his sword.
Her stomach twisted. “Right here? Seriously? On a ledge? Those are rapids!”
“Yes. Today, it’s all about controlling your opponent’s movement and fighting in difficult terrain. Since you aren’t strong in this environment, drive me back up the stairs and back to the forest, where you have more room to move. Also, you should never be without a sword.”
“But I don’t have one!”
“That was my point.”
“Shouldn’t I practice one lesson at a time?”
In answer, he swung his sword at her arm. She pressed her back against the cave wall, ducking the blow seconds before the blade cut the air. Goosebumps crawled up her neck.
Braeden laughed. “The best way to learn is baptism by fire. Let’s go!”
Kara ducked another swing and looked around, but she had no tactical advantage. Braeden was closest to the stairs and blocked her way to them. She couldn’t run past him or—she glanced over the ledge at the tumbling river below. Nope, she was not jumping into that. Her only escape was the nearby hole in the ledge above. If she could—
Braeden shifted his weight onto the balls of his feet, apparently ready to lunge and end this whole bout before it began.
No time to think. Just go.
Kara sprinted away, towards the gap. Braeden followed, and Kara jumped for the ledge seconds before he lunged. She grabbed the walkway, the splinters of rock digging into her arms as her momentum lifted her legs out of Braeden’s passing reach.
His fingers brushed her ankle, sending a shiver up her leg. She resisted the impulse to smile at the tingling sensation his touch left behind. It made her think of his hand on her back, of their kiss—
“Clever!” he said.
She pulled herself onto the ledge and wished she had a witty response, but she’d learned that lesson the hard way during an earlier match. She’d distracted herself by talking, instead of distracting him like she’d hoped. Braeden had tripped her and knocked her clean onto her back. Dialogue was yet another weapon, one that required practice.
Let the better fighters banter. Lesser fighters focus.
I’ve invited the following authors to give us your first “look” too!
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