Thursday, October 20, 2016

Free Excerpt from SMOKE by Nancy Lee Badger

I thought I would stop by my own blog and treat y'all to an excerpt from SMOKE, Clan of Dragons, Book #2:

    The odor of the dragon’s breath overpowered the scent of pine and fresh-fallen snow. Kera ran a hand down her leg, and didn’t feel any blood, but the limb throbbed. When heavy footsteps grew closer, a momentary wish to dip her body into the nearest fairy pool disappeared. How foolish. The urge to escape beneath its cool, clear water, or feel the massaging action of a cascading waterfall, was not strong enough to forget her current predicament, or the wintry weather.
    The dragon moved toward her as it circled the tree. Its long white fangs glistened, and its hot breath melted the snow at her feet. Kera searched the area for a weapon. Unfortunately, the snow around the tree was heavy, and had covered everything.
    Gazing upward, she thought to grab a limb and climb to safety, but she stopped when an odd voice said, “I apologize.” Who spoke to her in the presence of a dragon? Curiosity would be her downfall someday, but she peered from behind the tree and saw the green dragon, and only the dragon.
    “Did you…say something?”
    I be speaking to a dragon? Did I hit me head as well?
    “Aye, lass,” the dragon said. “I apologized. I did not mean to throw you so hard, but your wolf form surprised me. There be friends of mine nearby whom I wish to protect. I can…ahh…see you be not only a wolf.”
    With her secret out, a weight lifted from her shoulders. “I, also, apologize. I hope I did not hurt you by walking on your head. I heard something fall from the mountain, then I smelled you and…I was too curious for me own good.”
    “You have a lovely smile, but I see pain in your eyes. Be you injured?”
    She nodded, then immediately wondered if admitting her vulnerability made her a target. While contemplating her next move, the dragon leaned closer and sniffed her hip.
    “No blood. You should come with me.”
Before she could answer with a resounding nay, a roar shook the tree, and dumped snow from the branches above them, onto their heads. The cold blanket of white powder stole her breath, and the ground rumbled beneath her feet. She clasped the tree’s trunk to stay on her feet. Pain sliced along her leg, and brought tears to her eyes.
    Kera gained her balance, and peeked again. Another dragon had joined the first, and he looked angry. Smoke curled from his nostrils, and his red scales glistened like fresh-spilled blood. His black wings flapped, sending waves of cold wind directly at her, and the tree.
    “Calm yourself, brother. The lass be injured, and not a threat to anyone.” The green dragon moved closer, and shielded Kera with his white wings.
    “I smell wolf and human. You know how I feel about humans!”

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