Links Time!

I have unfortunately caught my husband’s flu, so this will not be a long post. Needless to say, I will not be carting my sick self to my 95-year-old grandmother’s this weekend. :p

For your brain: nifty Photoshopped things. Some of them are really fun. Also, agent Kate Testerman of KTLiterary is going to be putting up weekly ‘about my query’ posts on her blog. VERY informative. Check them out here.  For that matter, ever wondered just why you need an agent? Nathan Bransford answers the question here.

This is the coolest picture you will see on the internet all day. No, seriously. Look!

I should share more, but I’m quite tired. Instead, you shall have a snippet. 😀 (From book two, Simon Says.)

The arrow had a dull tip, rubber and rounded, but it still hurt when it hit.

“Ow!” Alex cried, and gripped his arm. His wings curled down around himself protectively.

“A stationary target is an easy target,” Isabel reminded coldly, and shot a second arrow.

Alex dodged this one. The mark on his arm had already healed, but he didn’t want to add another. He scrambled up the pebbled wall, flew sideways with wings stretched between hanging chains that would spring a trap if jostled, and furled them tightly again as he lunged through a ring wet with paint. Landing on the floor, he rolled, grabbed up the spear lying there, and brought it up just in time to block Isabel’s blow.

“Sloppy,” she said, stepping back and swinging her pike toward Alex’s feet.

He jumped, staying upright. “I am not sl-“

She hit him in the stomach with the blunt end of the pole.

Alex flew backwards, hitting the floor and sliding on his wings nearly all the way to the wall. Friction-pain fissured through him, and he gasped, paralyzed.

She stalked over to him and held the tip of her pike above his throat. “I could have hit you at any time. It was sloppy. Try it again with your wings in.”

Alex nodded, shuddering, and put his wings away.

Instant relief limbered him. The obstacle course was easier this time, and he moved more quickly, slipping past problems and dodging attacks. Isabel watched, firing at him, occasionally springing small traps.

Alex took a few cuts and bruises and one small burn, but it all healed. By the time he reached the end and grabbed the spear, his mood was fully restored. “Take that, foul beast!” he declared with a grin, bringing his weapon up to block her blow.

Isabel didn’t smile back. She put her pike down. “Wings out. Run it again. Until you can do it that smoothly, that quickly, with your wings in play – in spite of whatever pain they give you – they’re a hindrance in battle.”

She was right, and it grated. If he could only raise his magical shield all the time, this wouldn’t be a problem, but the simple fact was that he could not control it. The shield stayed down unless he was actively protecting someone other than himself.

“Yes, captain,” he griped, spread his wings, and jogged back to the front of the training room.

This was going to be a long afternoon.

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