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View Full Version : Marya - coming 1/3/09 Excerpt (G)



Angel Martinez
December 29th, 2008, 06:22 PM
Marya
By Sandra Stixrude
freewebs.com/sandrastixrude (http://www.coffeetimeromance.com/board/freewebs.com/sandrastixrude)
Release date 1/3/09 from Firedrake’s Weyr Publishing (http://www.firedrakesweyr.com/)
RATING: G
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When the Ktar chooses Marya to protect the heir on his confirmation journey, she has no illusions about a pleasant trip. A prophecy foretelling the heir’s death, ominous dreams of a mysterious city, and the certainty one of the heir’s companions will betray him all weigh heavily on her.
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The discovery of the assassin in their midst is only the start of her problems. His menace pales in comparison to the ancient evil lurking in the hidden mountain city. When Marya and her party are trapped and the men enslaved, she is faced with two remaining choices: give in to the alien being who offers her power and prestige or join forces with the same assassin she fought to thwart to free the city’s population from the monster’s tyranny.
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Excerpt:
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Marya stopped to let her eyes adjust and to collect herself. On either side of the staircase stood the statues of Alia and Liut. Alia held a book in one hand and a trowel in the other, her feet planted on the ground. Carved of bright alabaster and worked in gold, she represented all that was gi: stability, order, law, civilization, light, creation and learning. Her dark husband, Liut, stood on the left. Made of black, polished stone, he was lost in his wild dance, feet stamping out a rhythm only he could hear. His five hands held fire, the moons and a sword. Alia’s essential other half, the second of the two sacred, inseparable essences that made up the world, he represented everything that was ro: change, chaos, madness, wilderness, shadow and destruction. <o:p></o:p>
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Marya bowed to both in turn and spoke each name with reverence and Sabiana followed her example. As a Mother Priestess, she had done this many times, but visits to the oracle were still unnerving and Marya needed the moment of ceremony to gather her courage. She took Sabiana’s hand to guide her, the girl’s eyes huge with anxiety.<o:p></o:p>
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They had taken a dozen steps from the stairs when out of the darkness came an eerie, hollow voice, “Who approaches to disturb the silence?”<o:p></o:p>
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The shape and size of the chamber contributed to the strange, chilling sound of the oracle’s voice, but the oracles were also a breed apart, more in tune with the holy essences than other mortals. No one but the Mother Prelate knew how many oracles served now or how long they held office or if they ever saw the light of day. <o:p></o:p>
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Marya straightened her shoulders and gave the expected response. “I am Marya Intalva, Mother Priestess and Healer of the Essensate. I seek the guidance of prophecy, for good or ill.”<o:p></o:p>
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The oracle hesitated, the silence closing about them in the dark and Marya heard Sabiana’s breathing accelerate. <o:p></o:p>
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“Inquire carefully and be prepared to hear that which you most dread.”<o:p></o:p>
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The response was traditional, but the oracle’s hesitation had put Marya on edge. What did it mean? Was the oracle reluctant to give this prophecy today? She asked in the most general way about the heir’s upcoming journey. <o:p></o:p>
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In a singsong chant, the oracle cried out:<o:p></o:p>
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“Black moon, black sky, black star,<o:p></o:p>
Sunlit towers hidden by storm and cloud,<o:p></o:p>
Trust obscures the assassin’s blade,<o:p></o:p>
The self-styled god consumes despair,<o:p></o:p>
The ruler’s child plunged into darkness,<o:p></o:p>
Honor lost, there is howling at the walls.”<o:p></o:p>
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Sandra Stixrude (Angel's alter-ego)
Marya – release date 1/3/09 from Firedrakes Weyr Publishing (http://firedrakesweyr.com/)
Website: http://www.freewebs.com/sandrastixrude (http://www.freewebs.com/sandrastixrude) Writer’s Habitat (http://www.freewebs.com/sandrastixrude/apps/blog) – for authors and their keepers
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