Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Teaser Tuesday a day late

The following is a short excerpt from the third chapter of KNIGHT'S CURSE:

When I rounded the corner into the enormous study, my blood went still in my veins. Gavin's gargoyle, Shui, sat hunched on a perch in the center of the room and he gazed at me with hungry eyes. He was about the height and width of a bar-sized refrigerator, his gray, scaly skin appearing dull in the dim light, his bat wings folded back but quivering with tension. Cocking his head, the blue baboon face sneered while issuing a low hiss. The thing looked a lot like a flying monkey from the Wizard of Oz, only bigger and ten times uglier.

I hesitated, repulsed by the monster that would save me from becoming exactly like him.

Jutting my chin at the gargoyle, I said to Gavin, "He looks bigger than he did three days ago."

Gavin glanced at me, then at the abomination on its perch. He lifted both eyebrows and gave me a curious look. "Perhaps that's because he's eaten recently. Haven't you, Shui?"

The gargoyle hissed again, only louder this time.

Well, there was my answer to what had happened to the other butler. Lucky for me I wasn't on the menu.

I'd only tested my bond with Shui once, about three years ago. I had no way of knowing for sure that going beyond seventy-two hours without any contact with Shui would turn me into a beast as ugly and mean as him. Where was the proof? The tattoo on my neck had been made with a mixture of ink and Shui's blood. The Shaman who put it there had warned me what would happen if I broke the rules. I was thirteen at the time and his threats scared me, but as I got older, I embraced my inner Bs: bold, bitchy and bad. I'd felt compelled to test the bond. And it had almost killed me.

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