Zenya’s story is finally seeing the light. Edits will start soon and everyone knows that’s my favorite part of writing, NOT! But I will persevere, pull out some more hair, and cry when no one’s watching. It’s all part of my writing process. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for an April release.
I thought I would give you another (unedited) little peek after Zenya rescues her wolf. Nicolas hasn’t figured out his destiny but as my readers know he won’t be happy until Zenya’s in his arms and his wolf is well satisfied.
The Story Continues…
Not using her to lean on was impossible, and ten minutes into their escape she wedged her body under his shoulder. Her cat odor overpowered his other senses and made him angrier, if that was possible. He stumbled, fell, and gasped for air. He could feel several broken ribs grinding, compliments of his last beating. His arm was broken too and needed resetting. Sweat dripped down his face and the hot humid air didn’t help. Her body was soft but made of iron when it came to taking his extra weight.
He managed to stay conscious, barely. There wasn’t any activity at the camp but Zenya kept to the shadows until they hit the jungle. Brambles stuck to his socks but he was past caring. Everything hurt but at least if he died now, it was someplace other than the shithole he’d been kept in.
They trudged along. Her breathing wasn’t quite as loud as his but taking his weight was finally having an impact. Suddenly he felt a tree against his back and her arms slipped away. He was too tired to move. His socks came off and then soothing cool water spilled over them.
“Here.” She placed another water bottle at his lips. “Drink slowly. If you can keep it down for ten minutes, I’ve got some jerky. I can’t do anything more about your feet but put clean socks on with the shoes, sorry.”
His throat managed to work and absorb the liquid. His hand shook as he tried to take the water bottle. He gave up, exhaustion taking its toll.
“You need to sleep. I’ll give you an hour after you get some jerky down and then we’ll try some more food and water before taking off.”
“No… must go.” His words slurred.
“You’re dead on your feet and I can’t keep carrying you. Sooner or later we’ll need to move fast. Right now we’re safe but that won’t last. I’m hoping we get a day’s head start. Here eat.” She forced a strip of jerky between his lips.
He was too tired to argue or kill her. Another piece of meat would have been welcome but his eyes closed before he could ask.
“Nicolas, wake up.”
Oomph, he rolled, pulling the cat beneath his body before he realized it was Zenya.
“We don’t have time for this wolf.” Her muffled voice sounded beneath his chest.
He rolled back over trying not to show the pain in his chest caused by his ribs. “How long did I sleep?”
“Two hours. Here’s some more water and jerky. Be quick.”
He attacked the water bottle first, finishing it off. Zenya picked up a backpack and secured the straps over her shoulders. Using the tree and his uninjured arm, he managed to stand while chewing the tough carcass. There was no way he’d complain, meat was meat, and he needed every bit of protein he could sink his teeth into. He gave Zenya an assessing look.
“Put the empty bottle in my pack. We’re more than an hour from water and we’ll refill at the river. Are you going to kill me now or can we get started?” Her impatience rumbled with a low growl.
“No, I’ll kill you later.”
Now, back to writing,