Saturday, July 7, 2012

Sweet Saturday Sample


Welcome to Sweet Saturday Samples. This week's selection is from Duty, my current WIP in the final stages of the rough draft. Written in first person from Brielle's point of view, here is today's excerpt. (Please ignore any typos.)

~~~~~

I threw my anger into my work. In two days we cleared out five cottages, lugging out broken furniture, sweeping floors, and cleaning hearths.  The women and I labored tirelessly to reclaim a small measure of the life the invaders stole. Red-gold sunlight cast a long patch of light through the western facing door of my current project when I heard someone say my name. The shadow of a woman’s head fell across the moisture-slick stones beneath my brush.

“Brielle?”

I pushed up onto my knees and squinted into the light. It was Rowen.

“What are you doing?”

“Cleaning.”

I couldn’t see her frown, but I could sense it in the tilt of her head.

“Why?

“I cannot hunt down my cousin and hurt him the way he has hurt me and those I love. Durana cares for four children. One is just learning to crawl. She needs a clean floor. So, I am scrubbing it for her.”

“I saw the lord’s hall.”

“Then you know that nothing survived.”

“Not completely true. Some of the men pulled out some furniture from the bedchamber. The linens didn’t escape, but some jewelry and an ornamental sword were spared.”

I swallowed the urge to cry and locked my jaw so my chin wouldn’t tremble. “At least it is something.” My voice quavered.

“I am sorry.”

Her kindness was too much. A sob escaped. Like a breached dam, the flood followed. Before I could gasp for breath, Rowen was there. Strong arms and the scent of lemon surrounded me. I stopped fighting the tears and let them flow. She offered no platitudes and no excuses, just the warm assurance I wasn’t alone.

~~~~~

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4 comments:

Sandy Nachlinger said...

You did a great job of showing the devastation -- physical and emotional -- caused by the invaders. Brielle comes across as kind and sympathetic, not too proud to scrub a floor in spite of her social level. Great scene.
Good luck with finishing your first draft.

Casey said...

A nice example of trying to produce some good from something bad, with an emotionally tender and wrenching ending. Thanks for sharing this, Rachel. I enjoyed making your acquaintance through your work.

--Kimberly K. Comeau

Lindsay said...

Such a great description of her trying to set thing right and then the outflow of emotions

Sherry Gloag said...

I wanted to cry right alongside Brielle. Very powerful scene.