Abruptly the woods opened onto a broad clearing. She rushed across the opening only to find herself on the edge of a high cliff with no visible means of escape. Frantically, she searched for a way to cross the chasm to the other side. The sounds of the goblin's pursuit was growing ever louder by the minute.
Pryderi resisted the urge to slap her hand to her forehead and declare "Woe is me" like some fairytale heroine. Everyone knew that fairytales didn't exist and besides, she was no wimpy too-dumb-to-live heroine. Tears would probably feel good, but at this point were likely counterproductive. Running along the edge of the cliff, she determined that she would leap into the chasm before she would let the goblins take her back to the castle. Only evil awaited her there.
The howling goblins broke from the woods, halting just outside of the treeline. Everything stopped. She could hear the heavy snorting and panting of the goblins as they waited impatiently in the semicircle that blocked all avenues of escape. Then two of them sidled hastily out of the way of the man who strode out into the clearing. Prince Pookookhan.
"Come now, Pryderi. Surely you didn't think I would let you escape?" His eerie maniacal laughter rang out, echoing from the surrounding cliffs. "Every year there are fewer and fewer young men and women who embrace the life of a Precious. Imagine how delighted I was to hear of your sojourn through this part of the kingdom."
She ignored him, focusing all of her attention on the goblins waiting in the shadows. They were the immediate danger. Prince Pookookhan would never lay one of his pale green hands on her without a writ of bondage. That would be to write his own death sentence. But something told her that the writ of bondage was even now traveling down the high road in the pack of a courier from the High Court.
She backed up, one cautious step at a time until her heels were hanging over the cliff. It was important to know just how close she was. After all, one did not easily throw life away as long as there were other options.
With a blinding flash, the heavens split apart and a black haired knight appeared, bearing a mighty sword and seated on a terrible scarlet dragon that flew down to stand between Pryderi and her pursurers. The knight leaned down, snatching Pryderi up by the empty battle harness she still wore. Though the goblins had taken her sword when they captured her, the battle harness was of no interest to them. The knight plopped her behind him as the dragon soared with tremendous beats of his powerful wings.
There was a roar of thunder and then with a crack and sizzle they disappeared in a shower of glittering fireworks as the goblins rushed to the edge of the cliff. Prince Pookookhan screamed "No!" as he saw his plans literally vanish before his eyes.
Pryderi clung to the knight's waist with all her strength as the dragon shot across the sky. The knight glanced over his shoooulder at the woman the High Council sent him to save. She was very beautiful, he observed with a sneer. Of course she was. No Precious was ugly. Her long black hair flowed out behind her in the wind as they flew further and further from Prince Pookookhan.
"Thank you for saving me!" she shouted.
Well, he thought. At least she has manners. "You are welcome. I am Taranis and the beast you ride upon is Pennim the Great."
...to be continued."
Only two more days! What could you spend an eternity doing? What is your passion? Your hunger? Your deepest desire? Each day beginning February 5 and running through February 14 one of the ten authors will complete the line, "My darling I could spend eternity…" on either their blog or website. Collect all ten answers and e-mail them to firstname.lastname@example.org with Eternally Yours in the subject line to win some hot, romantic books. There will be three lucky Valentine winners.
The prizes –1st prize--5 books
2nd prize--3 books
3rd prize--2 books
Entries must be in by February 16 at midnight EST. All books and prize winners will be drawn randomly.
Sandra Cox Silverhills
Mona Risk To Love a Hero
Brynn Paulin Tribute For the Goddess
Bronwyn Green Mystic Circle
Cindy Spencer Pape Stone and Earth
N.J. Walters Seduction of Shamus O’Rourke
Elyssa Edwards Mating Stone
Amarinda Jones Shades of Gray
Kelly Kirch Time for Love Anny Cook Honeysuckle