This is not a surprise, I suppose. But this is! I was cruising Amazon today, adding tags and the like… and found this!
We haven’t even started the editing yet. And I can’t wait to see what cover they come up with.
Alex Beecroft’s False Colours is also there as they’ll be coming out together, so double squee! (Both on the English Amazon too)
Would you like a sneak peek? No? Tough. You are getting one.
England 1642. David is the son of a blacksmith in the town of Kineton, Jonathan his father’s apprentice. Two days before this excerpt the English Civil War began with a terrible battle near the town – at Edgehill. David, desperate for news of his lover, Tobias, had risked his life and had gone onto the battlefield and was injured.
Jonathan took the candle and went to his room David was still asleep, his face pale and waxy in the dim light. He sat on the stool next to the bed and held David’s hand; it was cool to the touch so he rubbed it to attempt to warm it. Then, because he could not think of anything else to do, he slid onto his knees and although he knew it was wrong to barter with the Lord he began to pray in his desperation.
“Lord, I beg of thee, save him. He is a sinner but he can’st do better than he does. If thou wilt grant me this, I will serve thee however thou guidest me so to do, just save him, and I am thine.” There was a gentle touch on his hair and Jonathan started; he looked up to find David smiling, but looking dreadfully tired.
“No my brave puritan,” David said hoarsely, “you cannot go promising yourself to others. You are mine.”
“David,” breathed Jonathan. “Thank the Lord. Let me go and tell thy father,”
“No. Not yet.” David clutched Jonathan’s hand in both of his, “Is he very angry? I’ll wager he is. I will be mucking out cows for months after this.” He frowned. “We should not have gone, you were right. You risked your life and saved mine, because I was too stupid to listen to you. I – only I wanted to see… I only hope he…”
Jonathan hated to do it, but he had to, for his own peace of mind if nothing else, he had to know one way or the other. He squeezed David’s hand. “It’s Tobias isn’t it? Thou art worried about Master Tobias?”
David turned his head and looked Jonathan straight in the face, his eyes frightened. “Jonathan?”
“It is all right. All right I tell thee. Dost thou not understand? Nothing matters to me except that thou art alive. If thou ever wishes to tell me about what happened between thee and the trooper, then thou canst, and if thou wishes it, I will go back there and find out if he lives, if I can.”
David was crying. It tore Jonathan’s heart to ribbons to see the real sorrow and huge tears in his eyes. “I can’t bear to think of him lying there cold and…like the others.” He gulped. “You would do that? For me? Knowing what you do?”
Jonathan had not known, for certain, but David’s words confirmed his suspicions. He found that he did not care, it did not change David in his eyes. He was still his own David, whomsoever he loved. “Let us not talk about it now,” he said bringing his friend’s hand to his lips and kissing them, comforting him like he would a child. “Thou needest rest, but please David, never lie to me again? Promise me?”
David squeezed his hands and “Never again, I swear…” his voice was soft and affectionate. “Get into bed, Jonathan, I’m so cold.”
Jonathan looked doubtful. “I do not think I should, thy injury.”
“Is behind me…” David’s smile surfaced once again.
“Art thou in much pain?”
David nodded with a small weak smile which warmed Jonathan from the inside out. “I think I would be more comfortable on my left side, and not to roll back, I can bolster my self with pillows on one side, but if I had you to support me on the other I would not roll.” Jonathan gave up, and slid gently in with David and when David instructed him, he turned his back to him, feeling David wrap himself around him. “That’s better Jon, and it doesn’t hurt half as much like this.”
Jonathan lay as still as he was able, shocked but inexplicably happy by the feel of David pressed against him, the touch of David’s head on the back of his neck. He couldn’t help but think that David was already lying to him, that it was unlikely the pain had lessened just by his own presence, but he forgave David for such a sweet calumny. Although David’s body still felt chilled where their skin met, from his shoulders to his hips, a warmth spread between them. David’s legs tangled themselves around his, his feet icy, and the warmth travelled through Jonathan like a trail of gunpowder ignited, down his spine, suffusing his hips and thighs until he felt himself harden as the heat moved forward and inward. Thankful he was facing away from his friend, he bit his lip hard in an attempt to wish away the embarrassment.
His wish was granted as after a few minutes, he felt David shaking with silent sobs and his unwanted ardour cooled instantly. He longed to turn and comfort David, but could offer him no words of solace; although he had promised that he would try and find out what had happened to David’s trooper, he could not tell David in all honesty that he felt he was alive, because he did not. All he could do was hold David’s hands in his own and wait in the dark until his friend stilled, his breath slow and regular, showing he was asleep again at last.© Copyright 2008 Erastes, All rights Reserved. Written For: Erastes