>The Unlikely Hero: Corruption

>The Unlikely Hero: Corruption
May 6, 2011 9 Comments Writing Stephanie Ayers


This is another piece from The Unlikely Hero, the fantasy novel I wrote during NaNo. It has been edited for clarity to those of you reading for the first time (I hope). 
   “The crown and my amulet must reach Ulia before the king dies. I must have them bonded before the inauguration. Do you understand what I am asking of you, knights?” 
     Prince Aletalian wasted no time going over the coronation plans with the Guild Knights of Tierna’Or on a regular basis, especially since he knew his father’s days were numbered. He wanted to make sure there was no doubt or traitors among the men, and they all knew their part. The Prince dismissed the Guild after a wave of bobbing heads gave him the answer he wanted. Only Galain, chief Guild Knight, stayed behind.
     “And what of your sister, sire?” Galain asked. “Gwyneth is next in line to inherit the throne, not you. I am your servant and will do as you ask, but I want to be clear that you realize the stakes of what you are doing. The people may never trust you if you use deceit to claim the throne. A king is only a king if the people will serve him.”
     “Thank you for your concern. I have already dispatched several Hunters to find her. If she still be alive, she will be found. Whoever finds her is instructed only to inform her our father is ill. I want to be the one to enlighten her that he is dying when she returns.”
     Prince Aletalian was looking forward to that. He had been cloaked in her shadow for so long. Bitterness had deprived his capacity to love her. She had excelled at everything ahead of him, even on the battlefield. It was he that was supposed to be the greatest Hunter ever born, the heir apparent to the throne. It was he who mended his shattered father when she left. Yet it was Gwyneth who still held the favor of the king’s heart.
    Despite his words to Galain, he had no intentions of bringing her back alive though, as the scouts he had sent out to hunt for her had been werebeings, on loan from Ulia. He had no doubt they would find her. Werebeings were powerful creatures, not only in magic, but in strength. Their human side was almost as powerful as a sorcerer. The wolf side usually came out during battle. Only death could kill the wolf, a task not easily accomplished. They had the lives of a cat, rebounding time and again. In their wolf forms, they were the greatest trackers on Savania. Only the fairies were better, but he had no use for fairies. Gwyneth’s skills would be no match for a werebeing.
     “Have you started training the new recruits yet?”
     “Nay. We’ve only just taken on the last one. Tomorrow we shall begin the training.”
     “All is well then, Galain. You are dismissed. Have Yssik come in behind you.”
     “Yes, my lord.” Galain offered a small customary bow before he opened the large wooden door and left the room. 

This week’s prompt was jealousy. Concrit is always welcome. I struggled a bit with creating more imagery from my first draft. Does the flow stay the same all the way through, or does the occasional modern color throw it off? Suggestions on writing colorfully in medieval times would be greatly appreciated.

Won’t you also take a moment and jump over to my writing partner, Mommylebron, and check out her piece, too?

Stephanie Ayers A published author with a knack for twisted tales, Stephanie Ayers is the Executive Creative Director of OWS Ink, LLC, a community for writers and readers alike. She loves a good thriller, fairies, things that go bump in the night, and sappy stories. When she is not writing, she can be found in Creative Cloud designing book covers and promotional graphics for authors.
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  1. 9 Comments


    >I had no problems reading this, even though I haven't read the other parts of this story. You did a good job of writing this segment so it focused on the jealousy and didn't get lost in the details of the longer story.The only place that stopped me was this line, "He wanted to make sure there was no doubt among the men, the least traitor, and that all knew their part." I did understand what you meant by "the least traitor." Did you mean "a traitor" or it that the name of a type of traitor..does this make sense?Interesting story. I don't ready much fantasy, but did you leave very curious about what would happen to Gwyneth:~)

  2. 9 Comments


    >I thought it flowed quite well. I stumbled on the same line as Sara.Other than that is was great 🙂

  3. 9 Comments

    {Stephanie}The Drama Mama

    >I fixed that line, thanks!!

  4. 9 Comments

    Jessica Anne

    >I love this story! I'm so glad I got to read more of it. I like the deviousness of Prince Aletalian. 🙂 The only part that seemed out of place to me was, "I am your servant and will do as you ask, but I want to be clear that you know what you are doing here." The "here" at the end sounds less medieval and more modern to me. I think it flowed very well and I had no issues with the descriptions/etc. being a little less formal/medieval sounding in places. I think as long as the dialogue stays true to the times, it works.Waiting impatiently for more. 🙂

  5. 9 Comments


    >Oh I love this story and your talent for writing it with the voice of that time is brilliant. I read this 5 times before I couls comment, I just loved the words, the images they brought, the feelings they gave me. You are awe inspiring!!!!

  6. 9 Comments


    >It's hard for me to concrit as I don't read fantasy at all, so I don't know what works and what doesn't. The story flowed well, and I agree w/ the commenter who thought "here" sounded too modern. I think as long as the dialogue is consistent in feel it will work just fine.I also am curious what will will happen to Gwyneth. I do know those werebeings will not kill her!

  7. 9 Comments

    Andrea (ace1028)

    >I like it, but like Cheryl I don't really read this kind of stuff, so I have to admit I had a hard time getting to each point. But I will say it kind of felt like a movie, and a bit of the Phillippa Gregory stuff [who I LOVE!] that I do enjoy, with the old historical fiction ways, minus the fairies and whatnot. 😉

  8. 9 Comments


    >I do loves the fantasy genre! And always I adore the politics that are ever-present in king making. I know you're trying to evoke a time, but the dialogue seems a little over formal to me. Maybe it's just prince lording over his follower. I must need to read more 😉 And I want more Gwyneth and were-beings.

  9. 9 Comments

    Kelly K @ Dances with Chaos

    >I had issues posting this.. good thing I copied it first.—-Ok, I haven't read historical fantasy in a long time, so I'm going to view it more from general concrit view – my knowledge not extensive enough to help in fantasy.I enjoyed this, although it took a bit to get used to the names and who was what. Considering this was part of a larger story, I think you did a great job of breaking it down so it could survive on a single scene.This line is still a little confusing, "He wanted to make sure there was no doubt among the men, no traitors, and that all knew their part." You could tighten it up further to "He wanted no doubt among the men.."It should be "Galain asked" about the sister – switched tense.You use "that" and "tell" a lot in this passage: "Whoever finds her is instructed only to tell her that her father is ill. I want to be the one to tell her that he is dying when she returns.” A simple rewording to: "Whoever finds her is instructed only to say OUR father is ill (it is his father too, right? not just hers?). I want to be the one to inform her he is dying."This also brings up another question. He was just saying how he wanted to tell her their father is near death when she's found, but in the next passage, it says she will never make it back there alive… It's a bit confusing.This line: "The only thing that could stop the wolf was death, and that was not easily accomplished." Could be tightened: "Only death could stop the wolf, something not easily accomplished." It eliminates more "that".This explains the jealous feelings so well: "He had been cloaked in her shadow for so long. Bitterness had deprived his capacity to love her." This entire paragraph shows his motivation very clearly.A good job, especially since it's just a piece of a larger work. Sorry I can't really help w/ the historical aspect of it.


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