Thursday, 19 April 2012

Erin O'Quinn: 'Storm Maker'


He buried his face in his hands, and I fell to my knees. “Please, please,” I prayed before the altar of our humble church. “Let Liam be safe.” I was not sure who I was praying to, for I had always thought that the Lord had better things to do than hear my juvenile pleading. The last time I prayed, I had directed my words to Father Patrick, for he would know how to ask the Lord on my behalf. “Please, Father Patrick, tell the Lord that his new son is missing and to keep him safe.”
I got to my feet. “Brother,” I said. “Do not blame yourself. You had no way of knowing. I am on my way now. I promise you—I will find him, and I will bring him home.”
I ran from the church and leapt astride Macha, turning her toward home. First I would gather my weapons, and then I would seek Jay Feather. I did not have the same confidence inside as I had expressed to the monk, for I had no idea who had taken Liam or what direction they had gone.
When I arrived at my teach, I stood inside the door trying to control my ragged breath. I was almost paralyzed with a fear that crept from my stomach to my arms and legs, and I could hardly stand on my own. I walked toward my little bunch of weapons leaning against the wall, and my hand went to Liam’s shillelagh, glowing darkly next to my own.
I would use my own magic to talk with Liam. 
I knelt, holding the burnished, knobby piece of blackthorn, almost feeling Liam’s warm hand on the swollen hand grip. I lowered my head and willed my heaving chest to slow its breathing, slow, slower, until a calmness descended from my mind to my heart and deep into my stomach. 
I let the moment itself dissipate like water spreading itself on a flat rock, until the very flatness caused it to turn into vapor and disappear into the air. This moment was no time, and this house was no place. My breath was nonexistent. But my hand on the shillelagh was Liam’s own hand, and I saw it clenched. And then I saw his arms. They were bound with harsh ropes, and his muscles were straining against the tarred cord, twisting and bunching in pain.
His legs—my own legs—were bent and bound behind me. My mind felt numbed, as if drugged with an opiate, and I could barely see my opponent. But I heard his voice, coming closer and closer. It was cold and harsh, crisp and articulate. “I will have my revenge. And I am in no hurry at all.”
And then the body itself rose before me—really half a body. I saw the dark, sleek hair and hollow, pale face of Owen Sweeney. I saw his huge arms and chest, but the rest of his body was a twisted lump beneath a dark blanket. And he was rolling closer and closer, using his massive, bulging arms on the wheels to roll his invalid’s chair over Liam’s still body again and again and again.
I heard a high, anguished scream that seemed to hang in the air for long moments, and then I heard it again. It took me a long time to realize that the voice was my own.

Storm Maker, coming April 17, can be pre-ordered at a discount @  http://www.bookstrand.com/storm-maker

13 comments:

Poppet Author said...

This sounds like an incredible read. Thanks for your blog, it's a great place to get a sneak peek at new releases

Chicks of Characterization said...

Sounds like a wondeful read!!! Congratulations on its release!!!

~Andrea

Erin O'Quinn said...

Dear Poppet, this is Lindsay Townsend's great blog site, and I'm here by invitation. I feel honored--by her, and by your kind comments.

Dear Andrea, thanks so much for your supportive words Best of luck in your own career!

Slán, Erin

Miriam Newman said...

Having had the opportunity to get a peek at this book, I can tell your visitors it is well worth their time to purchase if they aren't lucky enough to win it! Best of luck, Erin

Erin O'Quinn said...

Wow, Miriam, what a nice boost! I know how hard it is to get noticed in this field (historical romance), replete with splendid authors. The bar is high, and you're one of the writers who has put it there.

Thanks for the vote of confidence...

Slán, Erin

Paul McDermott said...

As a bloke, I enjoyed reading this from Liam's viewpoint!
Hope I'm lucky in the draw,Erin -looking forward to writing a review!
Regards
Paul

Erin O'Quinn said...

Hi, Paul! Glad you could visit the site. Yes, I think you'd like Liam, hs cousins Ryan and Michael, and maybe even Eóghan Sweeney, who is quite a bit more than I bargained for when I first met him.

I hope you own writing is going well, and thanks for the support.

Slán leat, Erin

Sandra Tyler said...

Goodness. This is genre that I'm just not used to. If I go back to teaching creative writing, maybe I should throw it into the mix:)

Erin O'Quinn said...

Hi, Sandra, Thanks for your comment. I have to tell you that the romance genre allows a writer to be very creative. An author has to bring alive a time long past, and make readers literally fall in love with characters who have in many cases a whole different moral compass and world view from our own.

I appreciate your visit today!

Slán, Erin

Jan Bowles said...

Congratulations, Erin

I'm really looking forward to reading this. The excerpt really made the hairs on the back of make neck stand up.

Jan xx

Paula Martin said...

I thought I'd already left a comment here - must be another senior moment! Anyway, many congrats on your new release, Erin. As a lover of Ireland and all things Irish, I can't wait to read it!

Erin O'Quinn said...

Dear Jan,

So nice of you to stop by and comment. I also like this scene. It's the first time Caylith gets galvanized into action and from there on, there's no stopping her.

I appreciate you! xx Erin

Erin O'Quinn said...

Dear Paula,

No, that was PAUL, not Paula! Just kidding!

I so appreciate you, and your writing. Thank you for tuning in and offering me support. I, too, am a lover of all things Gaelic (especially the music and the language).

Slán, Erin