This 8 sentence blog hop is hosted by The Weekend Writing Warriors. (Click the link for the list of participants, or rules if you want to join!)
This is a snippet from my yet-to-be-completed NaNoWriMo story, Black Ink Plague, a fantasy about inkbloods, people who were left at the roots of a magic tree as babies, and can use charcoal from those trees to write and cast spells. Now introducing the main character, the inkblood called Liar.
Liar stood on the roof of a ramshackle two-story building, having clambered across rooftops to gain a perch where she could watch the man she intended to kill today. Cin, the leader of the oddly named gang, Dirt, lacked ambition, but not everyone was content under his rule.
He strutted down the street, sneering at people who scuttled out of his way, faces averted. As they passed a fruit stall, one of the men hoisted up a street child by his shirt, an underfed boy of perhaps seven years. The man shook the child so hard he lolled bonelessly with each motion, a piece of fruit falling free, which the man caught, polished on his filthy tunic, and returned to its place.
The shopkeeper fawned over the group, and Liar wondered if he really thought the punishment fit the crime—multiple bruises for one small misshapen piece of fruit. Cin accepted his accolades with a grin, exposing crooked teeth with several gaps already darkening his smile. In a few years, he’d be past his prime, but he wouldn’t get to have those years.
* * *
Black Ink Plague is set in a world similar to ours, with the addition of the Rakau tree, which has magical properties–charcoal or ink from the tree can be used to cast spells. However, only inkbloods, babies who were left overnight at a Rakau tree’s roots on their first full moon, can harvest and use the tree. The price they pay for their magic is that the ink infects them, staining their skin and eventually forming words from the spells they cast on their skin. These words change their lives in unexpected ways.