This 8-10 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 from an unnamed, just-started WIP, with the placeholder name of “Bluebeard,” because it’s very loosely based on that fairy tale. Every year on the Winter Solstice, a sorcerer takes a sixteen-year-old girl as his bride, divorcing her and exiling her before he takes a new bride the next year.

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He walked down the line, glancing at each of us indifferently, briefly pressing his hand to ours, seeming barely willing to touch us.

As he drew closer, I studied his face. He wasn’t ugly at all, with a straight nose, clear skin the warm gold brown of the northern part of the kingdom, a generous mouth flattened by his tight expression, and light eyes. Finally his fingers brushed my skin, and heat stabbed through my body, sparks showering from our hands. He dropped his and turned away, leaving mine stupidly extended until I tucked it into my skirts, blushing.

“Come on, then,” he said over his shoulder, impatient.

“Me?” I asked, even though I knew the question was stupid–of course it was me. Me, to be married to this strange man.

*    *    *

This story is very loosely based on Bluebeard. The sorcerer is cursed, and the brides are caught up in the curse, though the nearby villagers don’t know how or why. He keeps the kingdom safe with his magic, and his brides tie him to a land he couldn’t otherwise protect. There are other ways to do this tying–but his curse demands a bride.

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About Caitlin Stern

I have a MA in English, and have so many fantasy/urban fantasy WIPs it's not even funny. I'm an avid reader of science fiction, fantasy, mystery, romance, biography, fiction, and anything else that catches my interest. I collect books, and bookmarks I find that are visually appealing and useful.

22 responses »

  1. Well, he’s not the most romantic guy, is he? Though literal sparks flying is your cue, girl!

  2. Yes!!! I so love it. I knew it would be her. The sparks are a nice touch. I had to come on early to read my next dose and now I’m upset that I have to wait till next week!!!! Ugh. You have a masterpiece in this story, seriously.

  3. And now I’m breathless with wonder, wonder what happens next and wonder if Bluebeard has met his match.

  4. Eden says:

    We knew it would be her… Just one small nit: I think you mean ‘heat stabbed’ not ‘heated stabbed’.

  5. Alexis Duran says:

    Not ugly at all, eh? Hee hee. I’m really warming up to this guy, rude manners and all.

  6. Carrie-Anne says:

    I think we all knew she would be chosen, though not the way in which the sorcerer would figure it out. Perhaps the sorcerer isn’t such a formidable person after all.

  7. It’s her, and now on to the fireworks!

  8. Interesting that he’s so nonchalant about who the curse chooses. Maybe he’s given up hope over time? I like your heroine and the description of the moment was terrific!

  9. ralfast says:

    Next he will say, “Please sign on the dotted line.” Such a romantic.

  10. Sarah W says:

    Oh, I’m intrigued by this magical curmudgeon, caitlin. More, please! 🙂

  11. Oh my, things are about to change. Vivid description. I’m curious to find out what happens next. Great snippet.

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