Welcome to the second day of The Twins of Devonshire and the Curse of the Widow blog tour. It will run until August 17th and will feature excerpts and new author interviews each day. But first, here is the obligatory blurb about the novel to settle you into this strange world:
A plague has covered the land, a single word on the lips of the frightened masses: the Widow. Washing a wave of terror over the countryside and then disappearing like a thief in the night, the Widow holds a kingdom in the palm of her hand. The eyes of Chaos have settled on Prima Terra and heroes must rise. Xeno Lobo, enigmatic and cryptic, hunts the Widow, seeking an object taken from him years before. Will he be able to stem the tide of violence and horror that sweeps the land?
A few questions for the author:
If you knew that everyone you know was going to die tomorrow, who would you visit today?
As many people as I could, but I would be on a plane to see my family. The older I get, the more I appreciate that brilliant and wonderful people with whom I spent my formative years. My mother and father were fantastic parents and I have the best brother for whom you could ask. It would require two flights, and I imagine I would take one of them to see the other.
Would you be willing to reduce your life expectancy by 10 years to become extremely attractive or famous?
No. I like the life I have and being extremely attractive would not improve the relationships I already have; being famous would only make me more visible, not enrich who I am. Being a famous author would definitely have its perks, but I would prefer to network and build friendships for a decade to achieve the same thing.
What is the difference between being alive and truly living?
The content and focus of your life. If you are not challenging who you are, what you think, then you are just waiting for something to come to you. We have such a brief time here that we need to make the most of every moment. This is not a license to reckless, but to be brave.
Here be an excerpt for your enjoyment:
“My dear Melnon, you tried to leave when the games had just barely begun,” spoke a voice from the distance, the tone angelic and soft. The inflection carried across the frigid winds that came off the mountaintops. The man stopped abruptly, his hands still a gnarled mass and his face frozen in a horror. “You left the tower in such a rush that we left certain debts unpaid.”
“Karian,” gargled the man.
A brutal howl carved itself through the ravines and jagged cliffs. The hairs on the base of the man’s neck rose and a whimpering sound escaped his lips. The man could only view what was high in the sky: the luminous moon and endless parade of stars that stretched far from his field of vision and beyond.
“How wonderful that you remember me. You flatter me, you truly do. However, Melnon, you knew that your life was forfeit, having bartered it for something you saw to be much more profitable,” sang Karian, her angelic voice still hidden in the shadows.
Melnon felt an oppressive weight that seemed to smash the breath from his body. Piercing talons bit through what little clothes remained, the splintered claws tearing away at his flesh as the weight upon his chest moved slightly.
Its grotesque hairy skull peered into his vision. The curved skull was elongated at the snout. Ridges of fangs were more numerous than Melnon could count. The surreal blackness of the creature’s eyes made it seem lifeless. Its thick crimson tongue flicked out into the cold night air––lifeless eyes centered on Melnon.
“Death does not cheat. You made a contract, and now that contract must be fulfilled,” returned Karian without hesitation or anger. She moved around the side of him, her frame still lost from his vision. She leaned over, her face next to the were-creature that loomed above Melnon.
Vibrant blonde hair was draped over pale features and a slender face. Her eyes shone a brilliant emerald, the iris stained white. Pursed lips pouted at Melnon, the crimson hue mocking the stricken man.
“You see, that even now, you have been given more time than was allotted. My faithful pet restrains himself, though he wants nothing more than to tear your throat from your mortal frame.”
“May you see the light of Exodus,” spoke Melnon.
A violent cough stifled anything else he could say.
Karian tilted her head and slammed her foot into his throat, the thin heel of her silver slippers spurting a fountain of blood. Karian let a girlish laugh escape her lips as his blood splattered across her face and stained the ethereal white dress that clung to her frame.
She stared out across the plains and stepped back from Melnon. Nodding to the hungry eyes of her were-beast, its lips smacked together cruelly and saliva dripped from its protruding fangs. The beast leapt upon the writhing frame and sank its fangs into the neck of Melnon, the gushing blood covering the scraggly fur of the beast.
It swung its head back and forth wildly.
Rising from the still form, it howled into the night sky. Scampering beneath the raised hand of Karian, it played the part of the gentle beast as its master contemplated upon the distance.
Bio: A psychologist, author, editor, philosopher, martial artist, and skeptic, he has published several novels and currently has many in print, including: The End of the World Playlist, Bitten, The Journey, The Ocean and the Hourglass, The Path of the Fallen, The Portent, and Cerulean Dreams. Follow him on Twitter (@AuthorDanOBrien) or visit his blog http://thedanobrienproject.blogspot.com. He recently started a consultation business. You can find more information about it here: http://www.amalgamconsulting.com/.
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