I draw in a deep breath feeling the cool night air coat my lungs. The scent of smoke and the tingling sensation does little to calm the chaos swirling in my mind. I blow out the breath and tip my head toward the sky. Hundreds of stars glitter against the velvety darkness. Twin moons shine bright red, signaling the season of harvest has finally arrive at last. Soon the village would be bustling with energy, everyone trying to prepare for months of darkness ahead. Even now, though the sun set hours ago, the dim light of the street lanterns can be seen from where I sit.
A gentle breeze lifts a few loose ends of my hair, causing the lavender strands to stick to my face. Stretching my long legs out in front of me, I let them fall loosely dangling over the edge of the cliff, the jagged brown stones biting into the back of my legs. I welcome the pain. It is a relief to the dread I feel in my chest. The harvest isn’t the only thing the moons hanging overhead signal. They also mean life as I know it is over. In two weeks’ time, I will be forced to leave my home in Maya and become the bride of a man I have never met and the queen of a land I have never seen.
I scoot closer to the edge, stirring up a small, chalky cloud of dust, and stare over into the emptiness below. The thought of allowing myself to simply fall into the void, is tempting, but it would be no use. Though my death would prevent my fate, my family would pay the price. I could not do that to them, to my father. No, he has given too much, sacrificed too much, for me to throw it all away to selfishly save myself. My family’s safety, their security for generations to come, depended upon me completing this arrangement. I didn’t have to like it, which was not reassuring, but I would follow through.
In fourteen days, on my eighteenth birthday, I would become Her Royal Highness, Queen Alexandra Romand of the Glade.
- J. Leite
The last several days I have been reading The Affiliate by K.A. Linde (http://amzn.com/B012RU16BW). This a royal, fantasy story set in a mysterious land ruled by a handsome King who keeps order over a class system set in place to ensure that the people of the land are taken care of and protected. Each class has responsibility and duties which help benefit each other.
I have always liked this genre, a genre where anything goes. The author has complete freedom to make up not only the characters, but the world they live in. There is no need to worry about cityscapes or country settings. The world is anything the author makes it. Mountains of shades of blues, lakes the color of amethyst or a noon sky with two suns on the horizon. The characters can resemble humans or could be completely alien. Civilization can be ruled by a monarch or a tyrant, or by no one at all as the characters rise above the fall of society. Heroes can be regal or ragged. Heroines can be princess or poor peasant girls. The story can take the reader on an adventure through magical lands, alien plants or reside within one town.
The sci-fi, fantasy genre is not for everyone, but for those with wild imaginations and a need for adventure these books offer the perfect place to get lost for a little while.