Friday Flash: Weaving Words

(c) Kim Knox
An unedited excerpt from Weaving Words – coming soon from Samhain Publishing

Kaede moved close again. They only had a short time now before Tarou would want to return to the Lodge. “What is your real name?”

Annaliese dug her hand into her side, twisting against the tight pull of the final belt. “How did she wear this bloody thing?”

Kaede scrubbed at his face. “Damn it, lady, if this mistake is found out, both of us are dead.”

“Yes, I thought that was probable.” She straightened and pushed her hair from her eyes, grimacing as the ornate curls of thin gold caught on her fingers. “I only know that my name is Vara. Nothing else.” She gave him a short smile. “I remember a tower, snow,” she stared down at her shimmering robe, “and a leather cuirass.” Vara… turned over her hand, stretching her palm. Her brow furrowed. “I should have sword calluses.”

“You’re a soldier.” He waved at her, at her clothes, her hair. “Are you… erm… female?”

Vara gave a soft laugh. “Are you worried, Witch Kaede?” Her gaze slid down to his breeches and he stopped his hands moving to cover himself. The soft scent of her camomile perfume wrapped around him. His penis twitched and he held down a curse. “I can’t pretend that I didn’t notice your reaction to this body. Were you and she…?”

Kaede shook his head and tried not to notice the glitter of gold edging her cheek, the way it sparked in her wicked eyes. “No.” He straightened. His lack of control made no sense. Annaliese Gaute had married his lord five years before and she had never once affected him. “And this is inappropriate.”

“Really?” Her warm breath brushed his neck, her tongue-tip tracing along the underside of his jaw. He hissed and stumbled back from her. She grinned at him. “I’d call that inappropriate.”

They were dead. Tarou would take one look at his smirking wife, demand a sword from his guard and slice her head off himself. His lord would save the Seven Words for him. “You were brought back for a reason.” Kaede forced his mind to focus and push from his thoughts the need to have this new Annaliese hard up against the cavern wall, showing her how inappropriate he could be. Even with Tarou standing only yards away. “And I don’t know what that is. I have my books, I’ll try find out more about what… you… were trying to do. Why he’s risking resurrection.”

“Yes, he,” she nodded to towards the lake, “doesn’t seem the doting husband.”

Kaede couldn’t look back, afraid of what she would do if he turned his back on her. “He’s not.”

“We have a problem.” She hitched her belt around her waist and smoothed back her robe. “I’m ready to go, Kaede, it’ll look suspicious if we delay too long.”

He blinked. She was being sensible now? “Witch, just call me witch,” he muttered.

“Witch…” The drawled word flushed his face and he held down the surge of fear. Vara’s red mouth twitched upward and the wicked spark returned to her gaze. She stood back from him and her chin lifted. “Aren’t you going to ask me if I’m a woman again?”

Kaede bit back a curse. They weren’t going to live to see the night.

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