I actually wrote some of The Shadow Raven this week! Hooray! For a couple of days I even thought I was unstuck. (Spoiler alert: I was not entirely unstuck. I was only unstuck enough to write one chapter, and now I’m stuck again and don’t like how things are going.) Whether or not I’m unstuck now, you finally get a TSR excerpt today. Enjoy. :)
Nissa flew over the city as fast as her wings would take her. She didn’t know where she was going, only that she needed to get away. Away from Detren, away from the castle, away from her new life.
Her wings tired as she flew a mile out to sea, and she turned back. When she arrived back at the harbor, she set down at the opening to the castle tunnel and shifted, panting and leaning back against the wall of an old abandoned tavern. Her hair was a mess, as if she’d flown as a human and the wind had tossed it.
“Were you running?”
Nissa looked up at the unfamiliar voice and brushed her hair out of her face with a shaking hand. A dark-haired man with a scar across his neck looked at her from curious black-brown eyes. “I don’t see what it matters to you.”
He shrugged. “I have an interest in runners.” He extended a hand and the edge of a tattoo peeked from below his sleeve. “Elashor Theberos.”
Nissa shook it, though her mind told her not to trust him. Someone who could survive an attempted murder, as his scar attested, wasn’t someone to trust. “Nissa Quail.”
Something flashed in Elashor’s eyes, but Nissa wasn’t quick enough to identify it before it was gone. “Nice to meet you. If you’re worn out like that, you must be hungry. Can I buy you lunch?”
“What do you want with me?”
Elashor laughed. “A girl who doesn’t trust too easily, eh? Who says I want anything with you? Maybe I just want to help out a girl who needs a meal and doesn’t appear to be carrying any money.”
“You don’t seem like the type to help someone without an agenda.”
“Just have lunch with me.”
“I’m not really a fan of pushy people.” Nissa moved to step around Elashor, but he moved into her way.
“I’m interested in hiring you.”
Nissa looked up at him, meeting his gaze. “For what?”
“We can discuss it over lunch.”
Nissa rolled her eyes. “Insistent, aren’t we?”
Elashor’s response was a slight smirk.
“Lunch it is,” Nissa said.
Elashor turned and led her through the streets to a small, yet still elegant, restaurant near The Silent Sail Tavern. They were taken to a small table near the middle of the dining room and given their menus. Nissa scanned hers quickly, deciding on her meal and spending the rest of her time trying to figure out Elashor as he took far longer than was normal to select his own order. The tattoo on his arm intrigued her, but she couldn’t see nearly enough of it to ascertain what it was, and she didn’t think he’d just answer her if she asked.