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Chapter 1 (Sample)




   “What ya drinkin sweetie?” The man lifted the glass to his nose, “Whew, that’s some rank whiskey.”

   Kasdeya reached across the table. Two fingers on the stem of the goblet were more than enough to wrench it from the man’s hand, “Its blood.”

   The man let a laugh escape his teeth. But it was laced with fear, not humor.

   “Bah, your pullin. Ain’t no one drinks blood.” The man grasped Kasdeya’s hand.

   “My names Mit. You one of those cult people? In town for the celebration.”

   Kasdeya smiled, “Nothing so trivial.”

   “What say you and me find a room.”

   Kasdeya produced a coy smile. Squeezing the man’s hand. At first, in a gently teasing way. Then tightening her grip until she cracked the man's knuckles. Continuing the pressure until his bones ground to powder under his skin.

   The man screamed in agony, falling to the floor. “What in the nine hells.”

   Kasdeya shook her head.

   “Boys,” said Mit, “She needs a good beating.”

   Kasdeya rose slowly. Parts of the woman’s attire looked like a serving wench. Others like a warrior. The greatest distinguishing feature of her dress was a leather bodice with a jade rune in the center. But that is not what everyone stared at. It was her eyes that sent women screaming and took any man’s breath.

   Eyes, bright and blood red. Like the setting sun on a hazy evening. Eyes that could see into your soul.

   “She has the eyes of the dead,” screamed a woman.

   Five men got out of their seats, moving towards Kasdeya.    Mit was whimpering on the floor. In between sobs, “Kill the witch.”

   "I am not a witch.”

   “Whatever you are lady. Mit is our friend. This won't go without reckoning.”

   Kasdeya sighed. Men. Always with a vengeance. Why is such a fragile creature so bent on their own destruction.

   “Wisdom would prove useful right now.” Kas looked into the eyes of each man, “Clearly none of you poses such insight.”

   One man pulled a stiletto dagger from his belt.

   Kasdeya spread her arms wide, “I am unarmed.”

   The men looked down at their friend lying on the floor, tears staining his face. “That doesn’t look to matter.”

   In unison, the men surged forward.

   Kasdeya screamed a blood-curdling cry. It froze the lead foe in his tracks. The woman launched a punch into his chest. The blow threw his fifteen stones of weight back twenty feet and across a table.

   Kas leaped ten feet across two tables landing on another man. Punching him so hard it fractured his face and severed his jaw from his skull.

   Kasdeya rose and dusted off her clothes. The remaining men could not move. None of the tavern patrons moved either. Most were afraid to even look in the woman’s direction.

   She flipped a gold crown to the man behind the bar. “I apologize, some men simply don’t know their place.”

   Kasdeya walked confidently to the tavern's doors. Took a deep breath tho she did not need it. She straightened one boot, pulling it above her knee. Gently grasped the handle and ripped the door off its hinges. Then she calmly walked out into the cold night.

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