Since today is 6/6/08, I decided to pick page 66 from one of my books. The best I had to choose from was TAKE ME IN YOUR HEART.
Just previous to this excerpt Zara, the heroine, discovered Awyn’s brother had turned her ship and most of her belongings into specs as big as space dust. Her sword remained unscathed, though she did have to sweet talk the scientist into letting it go with a little hand-to-hand. Now she’s planning to show Awyn, the hero, just how well she’s been trained!
They stopped outside a gigantic door. Silver handles set into the heavy wooden exterior were twisted into ornate vines, echoing the carvings etched into the rich, heavy timber. He pushed open the barrier with the greatest of ease and indicated she should precede him inside. “This is my room.”
Zara eyed him warily as she entered the room. Why had he brought her here?
Awyn shut the door before moving to an oversized wooden bureau that took up a sizeable portion of wall space in the far corner. He sifted through the drawers, throwing articles left and right.
At least he didn’t have her on his mind. A pinch more relaxed, she watched him resume his hunt inside a smaller ornately-decorated chest. Its gold accents glistened in the light. “Now where did I put it?”
This could take hours! “If you tell me what you’re looking for maybe I can help.”
“Then it wouldn’t be a surprise.”
Zara sat sprawled in the big armchair by the lone window. The velvet navy cushion was full and inviting and reeked of money. She found a comfortable spot in the towering back and then glanced at the view. The clear blue sky they’d walked under hours before spread out like an endless blanket.
A week ago she’d been flying in space, minding her own business. Then fate played a crappy hand and decided to stick her in this forsaken land were everything she knew meant nothing. Except to Awyn, who saw her as special. But why?
She watched as the hulking barbarian continued to rummage through his things, a frown marring his features. He was her lifeline, the reason everyone had reacted kindly to her. If it wasn’t for him, she was convinced she would be a lab rat right now. Death was preferable to that disgrace. She shook her head, dispelling her morbid thoughts. He’d thoroughly wrecked his chambers to find…something to give to her. “Found it yet?”
“Yes!” Triumphant, he jumped from his knees to his feet, displaying an enormous amount of physical fitness, especially for a man of his stature. Not many people she knew could do that.
He handed her the most exquisite scabbard she’d ever seen. The butter-soft black leather was threaded with fine white lacings and embellished with silver flourishes along the pointed length to mirror the accompanying belt’s swirling buckle.
On her world, few people involved in security owned swords, much less used them. Instead, they let them hang on walls to rust and collect dust, preferring the advanced forms of weaponry on Kalare. Phasers and ray guns. Pish posh. They were only supped-up versions of earlier powder and bullet models. In the hands of amateurs, the consequences were more deadly and widespread. It was one of the reasons she’d been against the upgrade.
She held the honor of being the only Alpha completely trained in the old ways. The specialized instruction and her dedication to the craft had saved her neck more times than she cared to remember. Lost in her thoughts, she missed what Awyn had said. “What?”
“I want you to have it. The sword it carried has long since been melted down.”
Zara shook her head in refusal. She couldn’t accept a gift from someone she wasn’t even sure she should like.
“You don’t have one, do you?”
“No, it seems that’s one of the articles your brother got to first.” Sarcasm dripped from every word as she tried to send him on a guilt trip.
“Then you have no choice; you have to accept. It is a debt my family owes. Do you not think it would be awkward to walk around all day, holding your sword in your hand? Besides, it would not be wise to have an unsheathed sword around the Aquilarian guards.”
He had a point. Zara looked down at the sword resting across her lap. As always, it made the hair at the nape of her neck stand on end. There was something about the way its metal gleamed in the light, even though the leather had been worn down to perfectly mold her hand. They were truly one. Her weapon deserved something equally as exquisite.
She took the scabbard from his outstretched hand and slid the blade inside to gauge the fit. Perfect. She latched the new belt around her hips. “Ready for your tutorial?”
“Just one more thing.” Awyn disappeared into a smaller antechamber.
He returned within seconds and her mouth fell open on a choked gasp. Awyn held the biggest sword she’d ever seen! Its blade measured one and one half the size of hers and was as broad as her bicep to boot. What in the hell was she thinking when she offered to teach him a lesson? He possessed a weapon that could sever her in two with the flick of his wrist!
Admittedly the sword was gorgeous. The blade was embellished with intricate etchings and delicate cutouts accentuated them across the jeweled hilt. To cap it off, the pommel had been set with a glowing blue stone that radiated light.
Her gaze slowly traveled the length of his sinewed arm and across the massive expanse of his chest, to finally rest on his face. The familiar hint of a smile curved his lips once again.
“It will not be me you fight.”
If you’d like to read Chapter One visit the Futuristics page at http://www.maseysplace.com/!