Read more of The Rush of Betrayal: Deception (Book One)
Hello Friends. As promised, I’m including the second chapter of my upcoming novel, The Rush of Betrayal: Deception (Book One) today. I was also going to include a copy of the book cover, but I’m still having some work done on it today so I will have to postpone its display until possibly next week. I’m very happy with its results so far, but due to some recent changes at Smashwords and Amazon, I’ve learned they would like larger book cover sizes, so I’m having the cover adjusted to match their new requirements/recommendations.
Also, before I go on, I’ll state the legal mumbo-jumbo – this chapter is copyrighted material by the author, Shawn Wickersheim (ME) and is a part of The Rush of Betrayal: Deception (Book One). Please don’t copy, use, steal etc. etc. blah-blah-blah…you’ve read all this stuff before on my other blog post which included chapter one and the same holds true here. Bottom line, I’ve worked extremely hard on this book (and all my books) so please tell all your friends to read (not steal) my novels. (Not that I think YOU’d steal anything at all, I’m generally a pretty trusting fellow, but sadly, you know how it is in today’s world…*sigh*)
Hopefully, you’ve already read chapter one (which is in an earlier blog post) and without further ado, let’s as they say, get on with the show….
The Rush of Betrayal: Deception (Book One)
“Listen to me, gods-dammit!” Hans Mesbone called out, once again trying to gain the attention of the unruly crowd milling about inside his warehouse. “I know you all haven’t been happy lately, but this here job-”
“I didn’t join th’ Bloody Fists t’ work guard duty!” one man shouted. “If I’d wanted t’ do tha’ I would’ve stayed with th’ city patrol.”
Similar protests sounded from all corners of the warehouse. Mesbone patted the air in an attempt to shut them up, but to no use. The rotten bastards just wouldn’t listen. He shook his head and ran a hand through his thinning gray hair. Maybe he had grown soft over the years. In his younger days, he would’ve slit the throats of anyone who mouthed off and moved on, but truth be told, he was just plain tired of the endless dock wars and gang skirmishes, being hired one month to raid a warehouse, only to be contracted the next to steal the same stuff back again. All the lifting and moving, the aches and pains, it just wasn’t worth the aggravation anymore. There was still profit to be made, sure, but the thrill of the mercenary life was long gone and the void it left made him feel old and tired.
“This Lord is paying double,” Mesbone shouted, hoping to appeal to their greed.
Lord Ian Weatherall was actually paying triple for the job, but Mesbone was gonna take the extra share all for himself. He was gonna make a clean break, get the hell out of the city and head somewhere warm. He liked the idea of living out the rest of his days basking in the sun. Perhaps he’d head north to Seneice, or better yet, cross the ocean and seek out Bel’yowlye. Like most people, he’d heard stories of the great paradise city perched on the edge of the sea. Thinking about it now nearly brought a smile to his worn-out face.
“Lipscombe promised us better pay if we join him,” a voice called out from the back.
Crap and damnation! The dream of retiring flew right out of his head. Ever since that gods-damned sailor had wormed his way into the Bloody Fists he’d caused nothing but trouble, and now with the bastard slave-trading on the side, things had only gone from shitty to whatever was worse than shitty. There was gold to be made in that kind of work, but Mesbone hadn’t wanted anything to do with it. Despite all the despicable things he’d done over the years, there were still a few lines he refused to cross.
Lines meant nothing to Lipscombe.
The only good that came from Lipscombe’s slave-trading was he was gone from Belyne more often than not. His recent return from yet another raid on the islands had already caused a fair bit of trouble though. Just this morning, one of Mesbone’s oldest friends had come at him with a knife when he’d refused to let him join Lipscombe’s crew. Gods-damn it all, he hadn’t wanted to put his friend in the ground, but it wasn’t like he’d been given much of a choice. He couldn’t let that kind of betrayal stand. He chewed on the inside of his cheek as he swept the room with his hard gaze. He couldn’t let this kind of disloyalty stand either. Not anymore. It was time to put things straight. Either these rotten bastards were going to listen, or he would start cutting throats again.
“I am Hans Mesbone, leader of the Bloody Fists!” he roared.
Faces turned. The room quieted. Hans Mesbone stood tall, head held high. He was a lone wolf surrounded by a pack of hungry dogs and if he faltered now, he was done for. He knew it. They knew it. Gods-damn it all! It was time he showed them this wolf still had teeth.
“I am your master, not Lipscombe,” he said. The hairs on his neck rose. Was the old thrill coming back? “You will damn well do as I damn well say! That’s a lesson Lipscombe will learn once he-”
A sharp pain erupted in the center of Mesbone’s back as a blade of cold metal bore through him and exploded out the center of his chest.
“Yer wrong ‘bout me learnin’ tha’ lesson, Hansy.” Lipscombe’s hot, sour breath brushed against his left ear. “Dead wrong.”
The blade twisted violently and jerked back out. Mesbone teetered forward on wobbly legs. No one moved to help him. The fucking rotten bastards just stood there and watched.
“Gods-damn you all to hell,” he slurred, blood dribbling from his lips. His knees buckled and he fell sideways. His face slapped against the ground. Funny, he’d always figured the stone floor would have been colder . . . and dryer.
Okay Friends, that’s it for Chapter Two. Yeah, I know, it’s kinda short and sweet but sometimes I like those little chapters. It keeps the novel moving along. And yes, you sharp-eyed readers who have already read The Penitent Assassin, there is a tiny connection to that book and this one established right here in this chapter. More will come as you read the rest of the novel.
What?!? You haven’t read The Penitent Assassin yet?!? Where have you been? Why haven’t you read it yet? It’s an amazingly awesome fantasy novel and I’m not just saying that because I’m the author. I’m just repeating what other people have said about it….
But seriously, The Penitent Assassin is the introduction to this dark fantasy world I’m creating and The Rush of Betrayal: Deception (Book One) expands on it. The Rush of Betrayal: Absolution (Book Two) will be out later this year (target release goal: Oct/Nov 2012) and it will obviously continue the story from book one and further expand upon this world. If you haven’t read The Penitent Assassin yet, please follow the links I’ve provided here to Smashwords or Amazon or Barnes&Noble (or any other online ebook seller) and buy and read it. It’s only $2.99. You probably pay more for your cup of coffee at the local coffee shop and my book will keep you awake longer than the caffeine will….
Or so I’ve been told. 🙂
Okay, back to The Rush of Betrayal: Deception (Book One). When might you be able to purchase it and read more, you might ask? I’m still shooting for the end of June though since I only have one day off this entire month (Father’s Day) and I’m spending pretty much that entire day with my dad and the rest of my family, I’m really going to have to push to have it done in time. Of course, if you’ve read my most recent interview over on Ciara Ballintyne’s blog you’ll know I’m kinda stubborn (especially when it comes to my self-imposed deadlines). And hey, when you’re done here, you really should go check out the rest of her blog, she has a ton of great information over there about fantasy novels and writing tips and other interviews with other great writers. She even put up a lovely review of The Penitent Assassin recently. Thanks again, Ciara!
Well, Friends, that’s all the time I have for today. I need to get back to work on a few final edits so thanks for visiting, leave a reply if you like and I wish you all a wonderful day! (And for you father’s out there – Happy Father’s Day!)