Saturday, January 28, 2012

Sweet Saturday Sample

Welcome back to Sweet Saturday Samples. For the rest of the chocolate box, please go here. My offering this week is a bit from my current work in process, Duty. Please excuse any typos and or errors. I haven't edited it yet. (One note, the story is told from the point of view of Brielle in first person, but she doesn't speak until the end of the sample.)

~~~

Taltana, the village midwife and wise woman, took the news of her only son’s death without the release of tears. Her face stilled, the light in her eyes dimmed, and she stared at the mud wall over the record-keeper’s shoulder.

“Marriage status?” he asked.

“Widowed last spring.” Unmoving except her mouth, Taltana’s life withered before my eyes.

“Age?”

She flinched and shook her head as though dispelling a dream before looking at the man bent over the leather encased tome. “Thirty-seven summers.”



His pen scratched the parchment. “Do you own property?”

“I maintain the western most hovel, the garden beyond, and a one day’s plow in Lord Solarius’s fields.”

The recorder grunted and wrote. Then without lifting the tip of the pen, he asked, “Do you wish to marry or pay the price to remain unwed? Either choice requires you house three men under your roof for the winter season. They shall contribute to the household. If you marry, your husband will protect you.”

“What is the cost of saying nay?”

“A month’s measure of grain or an animal from your flock or herd.”

“How can you put a price on her …” Antano’s grip on my upper arm silenced me.

The record-keeper’s pen paused, but he didn’t lift his head.

“No interference,” Antano reminded me softly.

~~~

Thoughts?

Thank you for visiting. Please stop by again. :) Please go here for more sweet samples. 
Have a wonderful weekend.

- Rachel Rossano

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

I LOVE IT

Anonymous said...

I LOVE IT

Jaimey Grant said...

Very good. I look forward to reading more. ☺

Sarah Ballance said...

Oooh, I'd love to read more! You've done a great job of drawing the reader in to a place/time unfamiliar. Fabulous!

sue said...

Good world building as they say - and I gather she is observing the proceedings? (I'm a bit tired and not entirely with it) I would like to know more about the relationships between the characters. not edited? lol you should see my not edited work. No typos

Sandra said...

I think I'd pay the price! Interesting piece.

Rachel Rossano said...

Thank you, everyone. I am enjoying writing this one. :) Thanks for reassuring me I am pulling the reader into my world. :)

Sherry Gloag said...

Your 'sense of time' in this comes over so clearly, and raises so many questions as to the outcome.

Lindsay said...

Interesting world you've built.
Love the scene and can't wait to read more

Marsha Ward said...

Oh no! Another WIP? Can I wait? I guess I have to. This is excellent work, Rachel. It sucked me right in.

trojanwalls said...

I think I enjoyed this sample best among your recent posts. And I think it's because of the way you wrote about the record keeper - distant, duty bound, almost feeling-less as if his work had sucked all compassion out of him, or that he couldn't afford to show any.

trojanwalls said...

By the way, I forget if you are on goodreads or not, but they're going through some changes. They use to use Amazon as a source for all their book info (pub date, author names, etc) but Amazon's asked them to stop using their data by Jan 30. Goodreads sent me a mail informing me of this and the fact that a few of the books on my shelf are in danger of being removed unless I pledge as source for them. I pledged for your Exchange, but you might want to look into sources for your other books.
Good luck.
trojanwalls. :)

Rachel Rossano said...

Marsha, yeah, I know. I have way too much on my plate already. :) This is actually a bit of the Opening Line Contest/Name that Character contest. It is tentatively named "Duty." :)

Thanks, Trojanwalls. :) I am glad you caught that aspect of his character. He is a tertiary character, but I wanted him to contrast my two main characters who are actively choosing to do their duties, not blindly following orders.

Also, thanks for the heads up on Goodreads. I thought I had checked on my books. I did again just now to make double sure that they had them. Thanks for vouching for "Exchange." I appreciate it. :)

Rachel Rossano said...

Sherry and Lindsay, thank you both. It is really reassuring to know my world building is solid. :)