Since I get asked by so many people at church when they’re going to finally read my writing, I decided to put up a sample today from my novel. It takes a lot of time to write and edit a novel, even a shorter one and my poor health makes it even more challenging. But I am willing to share some of what I do have that’s ready. :)
This is my blurb for the back of the book jacket. My prologue is underneath.
KYRAN KYZER AND THE CROWN TOAD
12-year-old Kyran Kyzer doesn’t expect to get a kingdom for his birthday, let alone a magical one. It’s a dream come true! There’s just one problem. He’s the only one in the entire realm who doesn’t have any magic. He thinks he’ll be able to cope just fine. But the problems begin before he even gets there. He needs special glasses to help him read, write, and communicate, most modern equipment doesn’t work for him, and his security people can’t keep track of him.
Soon it will be time for Kyran to return to Noveva to take his place on his father’s throne.
If he can.
Everybody knows there will be challenges for him without magic, but nobody expects a horrible accident to happen before he even arrives…
Prologue: The Hatchling
William Kyzer, 35, bent down to the trunk in his closet, studying the combination lock. It was an old trunk of dark cherry wood with thick brass handles. The lock was somewhat primitive. But then his whole life here in this world had been primitive. It would be a relief to get back home. Assuming that was, that home was still there.
And that was a big if.
The lock clicked open smoothly. He opened the trunk and climbed down the dozen steps inside to a small room. The room was magically lit so he didn’t need to turn on any lamps or conjure candles and it looked like any ordinary room in the house except that it was inside a trunk.
There were shelves of books on the far right hand wall. But he was more interested in what was on the left side of the room. He settled himself at a round oak table with an old office chair.
He opened the center drawer in the table and took out what looked like an ice cube. It wasn’t an ice cube, of course. If it had been it would have melted years ago when it was first put in the drawer. It was a hologram module.
He then fished a ring out of his pocket and slipped it on his right ring finger. He waved his hand over the hologram module, and it turned on. It made a satisfying snap-hiss noise as it powered up.
He tuned module to the last broadcasting channel he remembered. “Sentinel to Threshold Base, is anyone there?”
There was a burst of static as if it were poorly tuned. The image on the frequency stayed blank.
He frowned and made another adjustment. “Sentinel to Threshold Base, is anyone there?”
Perhaps they were all dead. That was a horrible prospect but it was one that he had to admit was a possibility. Or perhaps the equipment had sat in storage for too long and was no longer functioning properly.
He turned the holocube upside down and checked the meter readings on the bottom. Everything looked like it was supposed to. It appeared to be functioning properly. If nobody answered, well… then there was nobody left to reply.
“Sentinel to Threshold Base, is anyone there?”
At last he got a response!
The image flickered and hissed but finally came into view. He recognized the centaur general standing before him. He exhaled in relief and saluted, “General Rothav, Sentinel reporting in Sir.”
The General saluted him and he nodded. “It’s good to hear from you, Sentinel. After all this time, we were beginning to think you were dead.”
“Yes, Sir. The feeling is mutual, Sir. How is the Phoenix?” he asked.
Rothav paused for a long moment before he said, “Dead. His wings were clipped eleven years ago. He didn’t survive.”
He paled at that and grimaced. “He was not reborn?”
“No, nothing remains not even the mate,” Rothav said.
“That’s a pity,” William said and he meant it with all his heart. He suddenly felt old and tired. Before he could ask anything else the General spoke again.
“How is the Hatchling?” he asked.
“Hatchling is doing very well. He is safe and sound and ready for flight,” he said. “That’s the reason I was calling, actually.”
“That is excellent news, considering his delicate condition when he flew the nest,” General Rothav said.
“Very much so. He has thrived here as we hoped,” William said.
“Do you have a time in mind for the Hatchling’s return flight?” Rothav asked.
“Not yet. I merely was gaining information with this initial contact. I wasn’t sure there would be anyone left at home to speak to. Now that I know, we will have to discuss things,” William said.
“Does the Hatchling know what he is?” Rothav said.
William paused, “Not yet. We were unsure whether or not we would be returning. It wouldn’t have been fair to tell him about his heritage if there was nothing left of it to return to.”
There was a long silence and William couldn’t tell if that meant General Rothav agreed or disagreed. He continued as though he agreed. “I’ll be in touch again after we have discussed things. Keep a channel open for me,” William said.
“I will,” Rothav said.
William then saluted and Rothav saluted him again. “It was a pleasure, General.”
“Pleasure for me as well. I look forward to delivering the news to those on base that the Hatchling is alive and will be returning,” Rothav said.
“Knight Kysler out,” William said. He stood up and stretched. Things were stable at home. The news about the Phoenix and its mate was horrible, but at least there was a home left even despite that. And that was something to be grateful about.
His wife met him at the top of the stairs. “How are things?” she asked.
“Stabilized. Things are safe enough now for us to go back,” he said.
“Then why do you look so upset?” She paused and then understanding dawned on her. She sat down on their bed while he locked the trunk back up. There was a long silence between them.
She then stood up and went to the bedroom window. They could see the Hatchling outside, having a snowball fight with his best friends. She watched him for several minutes before she said, “How are we going to tell him?”
There was an even longer silence before he said, “I have no idea,” he admitted. “But we’ll think of something.”