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Hiraiya: Daughter of Willamene - An Excerpt (Sci-Fi/Fantasy)
Author's Note: About the story - Prologue
I have a love for science-fiction and fantasy books. However, fantasy isn't easy for me to write although my imagination often runs wild.However, after several attempts, I finally managed to write an entire "novel" consisting of 200-and-something pages. This prologue and the excerpt that follows is from the sequel of that "novel".
About the Characters:
Haraiya, mostly known as Hirai, is the daughter of an renowned female warrior named Willamene, the queen's champion. Though her entire family has dedicated their lives to knighthood, Hirai refuses to follow in their footsteps. She prefers to live up to her own code and is on her way to becoming an outlaw... for justice.
Amitrine is the daughter of the King and Queen of the magical nation in which they live in. She's prone to mischief and therefore, looks up to Hirai as a big sister.
This story takes place in a magical realm, a world parallel to ours, in the year 1729.
The moon shone brightly over the rural town of Wryemrak. It was long after midnight, nearly approaching dawn. The town was relatively silent except for the soft clicking of horses’ hooves against the cobblestone road. Someone dressed in a long, dark grey hooded cloak rode through the town on a chestnut mare. The rider read each sign on the town’s buildings, looking for a specific sign. Far behind the hooded rider was another rider, mounted on a white mare. The second rider wore a long cloak as well, dark purple in colour. The first rider stopped in front of a sign that read: Jace’s Tavern.
The rider, a female in her late adolescence, removed the hood of her cloak and looked around with large, light green eyes that almost sparkled in the silvery moonlight. Raven black hair fought the hairpins that held back its thick coils. The young woman pushed a few bouncy coils of hair away from her left eye and hopped off her mare. She continued looking around suspiciously, listening to approaching hoof-steps. Pushing out her full lips in concentration, she began fumbling at the sleeves of her cloak.
Patting her mare, the eighteen-year-old signalled for the animal to remain still then she slowly backed against the wall of Jace’s Tavern. The sound of the other mare’s hoof-steps grew louder until suddenly it stopped. Reaching into the large sleeves of her cloak, the eighteen-year-old began tiptoeing away from the refuge of the building. She stood in the middle of the street, facing the other rider who was dismounting the white mare. She simultaneously drew a dagger from each of her cloak sleeves and spun them adeptly in her hands, causing the moonlight to reflect off the shiny metal. “Take another step and my daggers will be the last things you have the honour of seeing,” she threatened. Her hostility and defence skills completely betrayed her innocent appearance.
“Whoa,” said the other rider, holding up small leather-gloved hands. The rider reached up and removed her cloak. Grey eyes stared at the young woman.
“Ametrine?” the eighteen-year-old whispered. She squinted to make sure she was seeing right.
“Hi, Hirai,” said Ametrine, taking her horse’s reins and beginning to walk towards Hirai.
Hirai stared at her younger adolescent companion as she pulled back the sleeves of her cloak to stick the deadly daggers back into their sheaths. “You have been following me all this time?” she asked.
“Yes,” Ametrine responded, looking thrilled. “Where are you going?”
“Never mind that? Have you lost your mind? How did you get out of the palace?”
“I snuck out.” Hirai lightly struck Ametrine’s upper arm with the back of her hand. Ametrine didn’t react. She looked at the Tavern sign and asked, “Jace’s tavern? What are you doing here?”
“None of your business,” said Hirai, beginning to walk back to her horse. She looked back at Ametrine and shook her head. “You’re going to get me into trouble.”
“I’m going to get you in trouble?” Ametrine asked, looking offended. She chuckled quietly.
“Yes, I will already be in enough trouble as it is for—Why are you following me anyway?” She seemed to be getting very impatient.
“I saw you sneaking out and I got interested,” Ametrine responded.
“But how ?”
“I’ll let you in on my little secret if you let me in on yours.”
“Never,” said Hirai. “Come on, Princess.” She grasped Ametrine’s hand and yanked her into Jace’s Tavern.
About this excerpt
Hirai finally has the guts to tell her parents that she will never follow in their footsteps and that she's leaving for good. Her goal in life is to avenge her best friend's death (her best friend was killed by outlaws, along with other people Hirai knew). Her mother, knowing this, tries to talk Hirai out of it but she knows it's no use.
Hirai feels that knighthood has too many laws to abide... laws that will possibly protect the scum that murdered her friends. She rather work for herself and do as she please to rid the world of those villains... even if it means becoming one herself.
Willameme (Willa): Hirai's mother. An incredible knight and ex-rogue warrior. Her amazing fighting skills earned her the much-wanted, honourable position as the Queen's champion.
Monteledus (Mont): Hirai's father. The commander of the Wryemrak army and head of the Wryemrak Knight's Order.
Daeros: The rogue who ordered the attack on Hirai's best friend's village. He's the man responsible for the death of Harai's best friend.
“Hiraiya, you can’t do this!” Willa exclaimed.
“Yes, I can. You can’t stop me,” Hirai rudely responded. “I’ve already made up my mind and there is no changing it.” She finished securing her pack on her horse and began climbing into the saddle.
“Hirai, listen to me.”
“I don’t want to listen anymore, mother. I’m tired of listening and speaking. It’s time to fight. It seems to be the only way to get things back into balance.”
“Come on, Missy,” said Hirai, patting her horse. “Yah!” she exclaimed, nudging Missy’s sides with her legs.
“Hiraiya!” Willa yelled. Mont came running out of the house. Willa seemed suddenly angry. She turned and began running towards the stable. Mont looked at Hirai riding away, then he turned back to his wife as she got to the stable.
“Willa!” he called, running towards her. “You’re not thinking of—”
“No, Mont,” she responded. She tossed a saddle on her horse, Boomer, and quickly buckled it. “I am going after my daughter,” she added, climbing onto Boomer.
“No, you’re not,” said Mont.
Willa looked down at Mont and said in a challenging manner, “And who will stop me?”
Mont gently placed his hand on the horse’s mane and stroked it. “Willamene,” he said in a soothing tone. He looked at his wife with kind eyes and placed his hand on her knee. “Don’t go after her. It will just make the situation worse. You don’t want to throw more fuel into the fire.” Willa picked up Boomer’s reins and stared straight ahead as though she was ready to ride off. Slowly, her eyes softened and she let go of the horse’s reins. She cooperatively climbed down from her horse’s back and began unsaddling him.
Mont placed his hand on Willa’s shoulder and Willa roughly shrugged his hand away. “I don’t think you understand how dangerous a situation our daughter is getting herself into, Mont.”
“Willa, Hirai is more than capable of defending herself.”
“Have you ever tried defending yourself against yourself, Mont?” He looked at her questionably. “I see in Hirai what I became after I was flogged by troopsmen. There’s a hateful, revengeful lust in her eyes. She’s ready to kill anyone who stands in her way. It’s a hateful heart that causes people to do things they would not normally do. Hirai will ride into danger knowing she cannot win but she will do all she can to satisfy her anger.” She sighed as she placed Bloomer’s saddle aside. “Mont, do you remember the first time you killed?”
“Yes,” Mont responded.
“And who you killed? Do you remember the person’s face?”
“Yes, clear as day,” he responded, beginning to understand where Willa was taking the conversation. “That was for self-defense,” he added.
“But it changed you, didn’t it?” Mont nodded. “Were you happy you killed this man?”
“Of course not but—”
“It was self-defense,” said Willa, completing his sentence. “But you see, there’s a thin line between self-defense, or defense of others, and simply murder. In both cases it’s murder but there’s a difference between spontaneously killing someone because you had to and actually planning to kill someone or wanting to kill someone and going along with it. Mont, our daughter is determined to murder every rogue and thief, every outlaw she comes upon. She will not stop until she is satisfied.” Willa turned and began to walk out of the stable. She stopped just outside of the stable and, without even looking back, said, “And she will never find satisfaction in murder.” She quickly left the premises, leaving Mont to think about all she said. His head was aching from the lecture. He rubbed his forehead, patting Boomer one last time and walked out of the stable.
Hirai brought her horse to a halt and looked straight ahead at a large gated fort. She tightly grasped Missy’s reins and smiled. “Yah!” she exclaimed, prompting Missy to gallop. The men guarding the fort from the inside, shielded their eyes against the setting sun and looked at Hirai.
“It’s Hirai,” one of them finally said to the other men who were moving stones and logs to build the rear wall of the fort. A few men ran to the gate to pry it open. Hirai slowed Missy to a trot as she neared the gate. She laughed as she entered the fort and hopped off her horse. “Greetings, warriors!” she said, excited to be there. One of the men approached her.
“A job well done, Lieutenant Andrew,” said Hirai, holding out her hand to Andrew. They clasped forearms for a moment and then broke apart. She looked around again before grasping Missy’s reins. “Very impressive,” she complimented again.
“Thank you,” said Andrew. “We have all worked quite hard. Allow me to lead you to your designated area.”
Hirai followed Andrew to a large tent among other smaller ones. Hirai settled her horse outside of the tent and ducked slightly to walk into the tent as Andrew held the large flap open. The large tent looked almost as comfortable as a small bedroom. There was a small, thin mattress in the back corner, a tree stump carved to be a table, and a lantern resting on its surface. Hirai nodded with satisfaction. “You didn’t have to do all this for my comfort, Andrew,” she said, turning to him. Andrew smiled shyly but didn’t respond. “Gather the warriors,” said Hirai, switching into commander mode. “I will meet you there.”
Andrew nodded and walked out of the tent. Sighing heavily, Hirai looked around the tent, her new home forever perhaps. She quickly shook away oncoming feelings of homesickness and mentally reminded herself that she was a warrior. She left the tent and met with her soldiers in the middle of the clearing. “You all have done a great job with headquarters. I can’t be any prouder. Get some rest tonight because we ride at dawn to Airtrinz!”
“To Airtrinz!” the soldiers cheered.
Hirai smiled, inhaled the fresh breeze and then said, “See you all at dawn.” She turned on her heels and walked back to her tent. She lit the lantern and began removing the layers of her armour. She took off her greaves, bracers, and arm bands before retrieving a map and a piece of charcoal from her pack. She crouched at the stump and unrolled the map. “I’ve got a lot of planning to do,” she said with a sigh.
Before dawn, Hirai returned from her mapping. She rolled up the parchment and put it into her pack. Then she grabbed her swords and went into the clearing to warm up for the day. She placed the swords on the floor and practiced the forms she used to do with her mother before practicing with the swords. Once she was finished, warning up, she returned to her tent to don her armour.
When she finished packing all her things and saddling Missy, she stood at the centre of the clearing and yelled, “Let’s go, soldiers! We ride as soon as I see the first sign of Apollo, which doesn’t give you much time!” She looked towards the dark sky and muttered to herself, "Daeros, prepare to taste your own blood."
What do you think?
Please comment and let me know your thoughts on these excerpts? Can this be the start a good teen/young adult fantasy novel? Let me know. Thank you for reading!
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