How many days before Mock fires me again? Thankfully Mock is extremely distracted and I'm left to my own devices. Let's see, next. *checks clipboard* Looks like Bayaden's up.
Last we left me, I was abducted, taken to Aldrien and given to Aldrien's Elven Warlord, Bayaden Tar Jian as a slave. Nothing to my name. No rights. No freedoms. What happened, neither of us could have planned for it. Life is not too shabby here in Aldrien.
"What now, Bayaden?"
"I hate to cut you off but you're headed down a path of spoilers and plus, a lot of what you're saying isn't the whole truth. How about you stick to my finer attributes, huh?" *raises single brow*
"I'm not writing a sonnet about your cock no matter what you promise me." *crosses arms*
"I should think I have a lot more going for me than my cock, but it is nice. You certainly seem to like it."
*hides face* "Good Gods, Bayaden."
"C'mon, tell them what you like about me."
"Well, as much as I do like living in your bed. I ..." *sighs* "I love watching you fight. I love your fierce protectiveness. I love being molded to your side at night and sitting in your lap while you feed me breakfast."
"What do you mean, and?"
"Okay, fine. I love when you chase me through the hallways and haul me over your shoulder so you can drag me away for a ... for spanking."
"That's better. All right, leave them with the art and the excerpt. You're coming with me."
"So long as you tell Mock I tried."
"I thought you wanted to be fired anyway?"
"I do but, she sorta writes me so ..."
"Appeasing the Gods are we?"
"Ha! She wishes."
"Anyway, you don't have a choice. You're coming with me."
Mock: Sorry. I have an unwilling apprentice but the staff is low around here so I'll take what I can get. I have a lot of art for Baya anyway and an excerpt. Bayaden to me has always been a hardened warrior type. He's been through a lot. He's old (I never say his age in the book but he's older than rocks) and loyal to his family. When Tristan first shows, he's not too thrilled--he's got enough to deal with!
In my every imagination of him, he's this beautiful brown-skinned darkness. He's got a heart of gold. You just have to dig deep. DEEP to bring it forth. I have two versions of him here for you and I feel both capture his essence. The first, you've already seen by M.A. Sambre. You'll see this image on the back of the cover and on the last page of the Kindle version:
I've gushed about this artwork already so I'll just say that I'm so glad his scars are in there and look how mischievous he looks. I still love this so much.
The next I had done by our friend Sparkle. I'm so excited to show you this. She worked so hard on it for me and I'm stoked with her fabulous work. I'm going to leave it big so you can appreciate the work in all its glory but not too big you can't appreciate it on a mobile device.
CHECK OUT HIS SWORD! I want it so bad (even though I have no idea how to use a sword). I love all the little details she added, like the griffin for his family coat of arms which I'll write into the book! I honestly hadn't mused on it but when she came up with it, I could totally see it. She even added his eye tattoo and I love how it looks like he's got an aura possibly shining from his heart. And his ears!!!! I picture all my Elves with long, high ears. I love everything about this.
Please enjoy this excerpt!
CHAPTER 6 ~ TRISTAN II: A BRAT'S TALE
“Uh?” We’re back in his chambers, he’s in his closet and I’m lazing about. Not the sophisticated way of a dedicated manservant, but then again, I’m not a dedicated manservant.
“Do you happen to know where my white blouse went? I need it for dinner tonight,” he says removing his cuffs by himself for once.
My skin prickles. This is the dinner, isn’t it?
I hop up and begin to remove my nice clothes—the only other set I have—and change into the clean but worn-out beige pants. I’ve had to use some of my mother’s sewing lessons to patch and repatch certain places.
Before I get a chance to answer, he looks me up and down. “Tristan, you know I am not in a position to give you clothes. It’s complicated, like with not being able to have you train my warriors. Why have you not stolen more in all this time?”
I squint at him. I don’t have an answer, at least not one that makes sense. “You said I could acquire these.”
“Do you mean to tell me that’s the directive you chose to obey all this time, while you’ve disregarded so many others?”
“I guess. I don’t know. I’m complicated.”
“You most certainly are. It’s just as well; I like seeing how clever you can be.”
“Wait, if you can’t give me clothes, how were you able to give me my tunic and the matching pants?”
“I have reason enough for that if I’m asked. You train on my field and it’s within my jurisdiction to grant you a uniform if I feel you’ve earned it. Your work with the younglings allowed for it.”
“Well, I do like being clever. I shall have more clothing by nightfall.”
He smiles. “Good. You should know I don’t plan on making it easy for you. Now, where is my shirt?”
Shite. I haven’t come up with an excuse that’s good enough. “It’s right there. Are you blind?” I strut over to the closet and pull any white blouse from a hanger. They all look the same to me. “Here.”
His brow raises. “That’s not the one.”
“This one?” I try handing him each white blouse successively and even a blue one I claim will look better on him. And then, “Maybe you don’t need one at all. You look handsome in your battle armor.”
“Come here little human,” he says figuring it out.
I briefly glance at the door before I try to make a run for it. It’s easy for him to catch me and toss me over his shoulder. I kick and bang on his back to no avail; it’s like beating on a mountainside. He swings out a chair and stands me before him in a ritual that has become formulaic for us. “Are you going to tell me now, or while you’re over my knee, hmmm?”
I contemplate which I’d prefer, because either way, I’m going over his knee. “I don’t even know how it happened. I suck at laundry, Bayaden!”
“Fine. It somehow ended up with a red splotch on it, and then it became fire kindling.”
“How did my fine shirt become fire kindling?” he says with a hard edge to his voice.
“Because I threw it in the fire in hopes you wouldn’t find out. You have so many, how can you tell the bloody difference?”
His mouth forms a line and then his fingers are at my waistband, pulling them down, baring me for the spanking I’m about to get and over his knees I go. Bayaden knows what a warrior I am and therefore how much I can take, so he’s not easy on me. His hand is leaden, coming down on each cheek in successive sets of five.
My arse is quickly on fire and I’m squirming and kicking, trying to free myself, which is a useless endeavor and happens to be something else I like about this—being manhandled, unable to get away. “I’m sorry! I’m sorry all right?”
“That’s the fourth shirt this month, and I liked that one best.” He keeps spanking me.
“Ow! Baya-aaayowwch! You have seventeen others.”
I’m flushed in more places than my backside, it’s still embarrassing getting a spanking like a child when you’re a grown man, even if you need it. Any person could knock at any time and they do. Bayaden lets them stroll right in. Does that mean he’ll let me up? No. If I want to misbehave, then such is my fate.
When he finally lets me stand up, after the spanking from hell, I pout at him, but I feel better even with my arse afire. Sometimes I don’t even know I need a spanking until after the fact. I think that’s why his shirts “mysteriously” end up ruined. He pulls me in for a kiss with my pants still down. “That was naughty, brat.”
“You really do look better in the blue one, you know,” is my answer, because yes, I’m a bit naughty and I can’t deny it. In my defense, Bayaden brings it out in me. I pull my pants up.
“All right, fetch me the blue one then.”