Writer’s block has died in flaming, gory doom. ^_^ Here is a snippet from Kingmaker (renamed from Guardian). Enjoy!
Wake up, Alex.
Flashes of light, fire and heat dancing in darkness. Pain. He didn’t want to wake.
Wake up, Alex.
The sear of burned skin, aching. Wings throbbing. No.
It’s time to wake up, Alex.
The woman’s whisper persisted, sliding through his mind like thin silk. Alex opened his eyes.
Ash stung them. Embers flew all around his head, insect-like, bright orange against the backdrop of night sky and thick smoke.
He discovered he was coughing. Had been for a while, and had no voice left to shout. Yet he had to shout, had to call for… for….
He’s there. Beneath you.
Her voice was like cool water. Wincing, Alex struggled to his feet.
Beneath him lay a fey boy. They all looked like they were on the verge of puberty, and he could be twelve or fifteen or a thousand years old, but he wore the clothes of a teen – jeans, scuffed sneakers, a red hooded sweatshirt stained with ash. His breath was shallow, and his eyes moved frenetically behind his lids as though he dreamed the fire and chaos.
With an enormous crack, a square beam suddenly broke free from the ceiling overhead and crashed beside them, sending up ember-clouds and making the floor creak alarmingly. Where was this? He couldn’t remember. “Holmes!” he tried to call, but his voice was a croak, a wretched squawk inaudible in the fire.
Caelan. He knew the fey boy’s name was Caelan. And Caelan had to be protected no matter what.
Alex pulled him from the floor, stomach sick with the awareness that they’d made a them-shaped dent in the burning wood, that however they’d fallen, they’d landed with such force that they might as well have landed in snow. Too hard. They’d landed too hard.
I could’ve killed him, Alex thought, and clutched the boy to his chest.
Caelan was breathing. His heart beat. His ears responded to the stimuli of a quick breath, twitching out of the way.
How did I know to do that? Alex thought with growing fear, unsure what else he knew or didn’t know, unsure where they were, unsure what to do.
Fly, urged the woman in cool-river tones, and Alex spread his wings without question and jumped.