Michelle Franklin · 185 pages
Rating: (48 votes)
“Boudicca MacDaede was not the most striking of women, but she had a wryness in character and heartiness in form that recommended her to the rough demands of a farmer’s daughter and a soldier’s sufferance." ~ First two lines of book 1 in the Haanta Series”
“Her remarks caught his consideration and his violet eyes tapered with growing dislike. He was at least dejected in his solitude, and now she had come to ruin his isolation and compel him to speak when he would otherwise be enjoying silence. He pressed his immense body against the bars of the cell in hopes of intimidating her, but the captain remained complacent and unaffected by his display.
“Leave me, woman,” he bellowed at her.
“I fear a cannot do that just now. I might need your help, should you wish to give it.”
He groaned and turned aside. “I will not assist you.”
“It is rather a shame you won’t. I was going to offer you your freedom.”
The giant turned back and looked at her with hesitation.”
“And if I use the opportunity to kill you and leave?” the giant said in a tone half-serious half-arch.
“I have never known warriors to be dishonourable. Should you prove me wrong, we will all be dead anyway. There is nothing so ugly as reneging a promise, wouldn’t you agree?”
The giant clenched his teeth and looked down. “I would,” he murmured.”
“My promise is fulfilled,” he said.
“It is,” she coolly replied. “I shall be sorry to lose you as a soldier. I would be inclined to offer you a more agreeable weapon should you like to stay.”
“I am well-trained, woman, unlike most of your men,” the giant scoffed. “The weapon in my hand does not matter as much as the skill behind it.”
“I cannot disagree.” She smiled at him and handed him a few rations for his impending journey. “That should last you a day if you are careful. I would give you more, but unfortunately cannot spare anything beyond that.” She stood back from him, expecting him to take his leave, but he only stood in his place, looked down at the rations in his hand, and sighed. “If you wish to revisit your home, you are more than welcome to return to it. I shall not attempt to stop you or alert the others, as promised.”
The giant gave her a pensive look and remained in his place.
She waited for an explanation owing to his dejected looks and immobility, but received none, leading her to believe the matter of his captivity was graver than she had expected.”
“Why don’t you tell me your name?”
“Very well. Your rank?”
“What would a woman understand of rank?”
“What does my sex have to do with my understanding?”
“As I have said, women are not warriors.”
“Perhaps in your society they aren’t, but in Frewyn we do very well for ourselves.”
“Eat, woman,” he bellowed, leaning over her, prepared to force the remainder of her meal into her opened mouth.
“I would,” she said in a strained voice, “But there is a giant attached to my chin. Perhaps if he would be so gracious as to remove the cured pork from my pack, I would share it with him.”
Rautu’s eyes blazed in senseless joy. He released his companion and hastened toward her effects, rummaging through them with great anticipation. He found a small brown parchment parcel and assumed that this was the source of his happiness. He sniffed the outside of the paper and hummed in delight for the exquisite scent. He tore open the barrier between him and his prize and he was compelled to smile when remarking the numerous slices of meat in his hands. He began eating them immediately, leaving no time between one slice and the next to savour that which he had longed to again taste. The superior fare of Frewyn had been the chief of his consolation during the war, and if he was to remain on the islands with all its splendor, all its comforting familiarity, all its temperate climate, and all its horrendous food, he would relish this last ember of bliss before being made to suffer a diet of steamed grains again.
“I did say share,” the commander called out.
“I am responsible for securing your life,” he replied with a full mouth and without turning around.
“And I thanked you accordingly.” The commander’s remonstrations were unanswered, and she scoffed in aversion as she watched the voracious beast consume nearly all the provisions she had been saving for the return journey. “I know you shall not be satisfied until you have all the tribute in the world, but that pork does belong to me, Rau.”
“You are not permitted to have meat while taking our medicines,” he said, dismissively.
She peered at him in circumspection. “I don’t recall you mentioning that stipulation before. I find it convenient that you should care to do so now.”
The giant paused, his cheeks filled with pork. “And?” he said, shoving another slice into his mouth.
“And,” she laughed, “You’re going to allow me to starve on your inedible bread while you skulk off with something that was meant for both of us?”
“Savior, indeed,” the commander fleered. “You have saved me from one means of death only to plunge me into another.”
“I’m talking about a little proposition for us both to get something we really, really want. I give a little, and you give a little.”--Aidan”
“The weather was clear and still, and the countless stars opened above them, seeming like brilliant cold fruits that Maerad could simply pick out of the sky.”
“i had fired 9-millimeters before and didn't like them. they weren't as accurate as my .38 special. they weren't as safe, and they could jam. i had never been one to substitute quantity for quality, and there was no substitution for being informed and practiced”
“For you time-capsule types, MoPo was something called a convenience store, as in, 'The soda is conveniently located right next to the doughnuts and lottery tickets.' People who want to understand better how the human race was conquered so easily need to study those stores. Almost everything inside was filled with sugar, cheese, or weight-loss tips”
“If you don't want a generation of robots, fund the arts!”
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