Here we go... Michelle Franklin's
The festivities for the evening over, Soledhan was eager to read his newest acquisition. He was more intrigued by the images of Sanhedhran creatures portrayed on the covers more than he was of the story boasted of between them, but even more fascinating to him was the notion that Kai Linaa had drawn them. He had been used to see her draw all manner of objects and animals for him upon her frequent visits to Frewyn, but the idea that these pictures accompanied a story gave him immense delight. He must read this book, but more importantly he must have his mother read it to him, as only she would not how each character must be read and only she could perform the feigned accents and intonations necessary for the book to be a grand success. He attacked her with the book in hand the moment they entered the commons for the evening, waving it wildly at her with sparkling eyes and a dancing oscillations.
“Iimaa, can you read to me?” he entreated her in his sweet voice.
The commander smiled and sighed and lifted her son by his elbows from the door so that she, Rautu, Jaicobh and Hathanta may pass the threshold. “One chapter, my love,” she said with false firmness, “and then Iimaa must attend Utaa for a while. I have been horridly neglectful to him all day.”
Rautu moved toward the hearth to build a fire and in so doing passed his mate a fervent look.
Soledhan was reminded of his parents needing to perform their own duties and Mivaala and therefore if he wished to have at least one chapter read to him, he must concede. “Haa, Iimaa,” he said in a descending tone while secretly contriving to have her read more once the recitation was begun.
Once the fire was lit and everyone claimed their places around the gentle flames, the commander employed the amber glow of the fires to lighten the pages. She turned the book toward Soledhan, who was nestling close against her side, and with a flourish and a brandishing of the first page, she commenced their diversion for the evening. It was a glorious reading, furnished by Kai Linaa’s remarkable illustrations and an exhilarating story, at least where the first chapter was concerned. The book began with a story of a young boy who had lost his sister in the throes of war, and upon discovering her being alive, the boy was determined then to find her, engaging the assistance of a soothsayer and nearly a dozen animal companions to reunite the couple. As Rhodhira was the author of this tale, it could only end in happiness, but once the first chapter had done fifteen minutes after it had started, the boy had only befriended one animal and had barely begun his great journey across crevasse and chasm to find his missing relation.
As her promise was now fulfilled, the commander was about to close the book and join her mate when Soledhan’s desperate pleas impeded her.
"Another, Iimaa?” he begged with sparkling eyes.
Her heart felt besieged at once, and she knew the only manner in which to deflect such a deliberate attack was to lay the duty to someone just as qualified as herself. “Ask Den Utaa to read to you, my love,” she said, motioning toward her father, who was sitting beside the table.
Soledhan’s plan was here failing and sought to make a swift recovery. “But you make voices,” was his defense.
“You’re a very entertainin’ reader, darlin’” said Jaicobh with keen smiles.
The commander gave her father a sharp look, as though to command him not to provoke his grandchild’s solicitations. “Den Utaa is the master of voices,” she declared. “He read to me when I was your age. Where do you think I learned my powers of performance?”
Soledhan’s interests instantly altered from having his mother read to having his grandfather fulfill such expectations. He took his hand-bound volume to his grandfather and hopped onto his lap, cuddling close in the bend of his arm and grinning up at him with suspense as the commander and Den Asaan slipped out of the room to enjoy a moment to themselves after such a long and arduous day.
A huge thank you to Michelle for entertaining us today! Now here's the contest, as promised!
Michelle is giving away a pdf copy of her book "Tales from Frewyn: Short Stories from the Haanta Series Vol. 1"!
Here's a little about it:
The Haanta Series is the longest, ongoing, online romantic fantasy series. Thousands of readers visit the world of the Two Continents to enjoy the daily short stories featuring all their favorite characters from the Haanta Series novels. In between the business of the books, the commander, Rautu, Otenohi, Unghaahi, Leraa, Kai Linaa and Alasdair enjoy some time together in Diras Castle, but as the stories portray, mischief lies in every corner of the keep where spiders, chocolate pies, petulant giants and grouchy cooks abound.
Leave your comments, and on or around August 31, Ms. Franklin will choose one lucky commenter as the winner! You can comment as often as you wish, but remember...only one comment per person will be entered in the contest. Don't forget to leave your email address or other contact info so we can reach you if you're the "chosen one"! All entries must be posted no later than August 30 at 11:59 p.m. EST! Thanks and GOOD LUCK!!!