Initiate: The Unfinished Song, Book One
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The initiation ceremony is the gateway to ultimate power...or death.
A DETERMINED GIRL
Dindi can't do anything right, maybe because she spends more time dancing with pixies than doing her chores. Her clan hopes to marry her off and settle her down, but she dreams of becoming a Tavaedi, one of the powerful warrior-dancers whose secret magics are revealed only to those who pass a mysterious Test during the Initiation ceremony. The problem? No-one in Dindi's clan has ever passed the Test. Her grandmother died trying. But Dindi has a plan...
AN EXILED WARRIOR
Kavio is the most powerful warrior-dancer in Faearth, but when he is exiled from the tribehold for a crime he didn't commit, he decides to shed his old life. If roving cannibals and hexers don't kill him first, this is his chance to escape the shadow of his father's wars and his mother's curse. But when he rescues a young Initiate girl, he finds himself drawn into as deadly a plot as any he left behind. He must decide whether to walk away or fight for her... assuming she would even accept the help of an exile.
these things to guide you, assure you the rest of the world is there, that you aren’t lost alone blind and deaf in the dark. Their aim is to keep you so exhausted, so helpless, you can’t think beyond surviving the next step, and the next after that. They never let you rest, they hit and curse and threaten you. They force-march you down a narrow trail through bushes and trees that slap you. Occassionally, you trip, slip, bump against another captive tied in the line, and this brief rub of flesh
If she found beauty, for hours at a time it would occupy her. Lights, patterns, colors, movements. Once, the old woman set up the loom before going to bed, and in the morning, found that Vessia had completed the entire weave, a perfect copy of one of the rugs upon the floor. “You finished the whole thing in one night!” exclaimed the old woman. “And without a single mistake! You are amazing!” “You are amazing,” Vessia repeated without inflection and without looking at her. After that, the old
“Fa!” The boy was bluffing. Time to bone the fish. Rthan wouldn’t ask his tribesmen to increase their own risk by dragging a captive all the way across enemy territory. He hefted his knife. In all his wriggling, Kavio had wedged himself into the curl of the boat, and he used that leverage to kick both legs square into Rthan’s chest. Rthan went overboard, found his footing on the river bottom and came up, just in time to have the paddle smack him in the face. Kavio had somehow untied himself.
steered his boat toward a low hanging tree. At his unnatural speed, the crash would kill him. Kavio’s boat surfed the spray over a rock just before the tree and sailed over the trunk. The two men in the boat to Rthan’s right didn’t bounce off the rock at quite the right angle. They hit the tree. Their canoe splintered into pieces, the men themselves careened through the air. The tree caught one, the river the other, but before Rthan could check to see if they’d survived, he and his partner
into loud blubbering. “That’s not quite what happened,” said Gwena. At least she looked guilty. “We were—“ “I dropped my doll from the log and fell in when I tried to catch it,” Dindi said. Gwena looked at her gratefully. Hurrying on, she gestured to Kavio. “This man saved me.” “Er, I see.” Abiono looked flustered at the presence of the stranger. “Is this true?” Kavio inclined his head. “Then we are most grateful,” Abiono said. “As you can see, we are on our way to the Yellow Bear tribehold