Here's an excerpt from A Bed of Blades, available for pre-order now and releasing in February. It is the sequel to A Gift of Poison and the second book in The Kingmakers' War series.
In this scene, Briand has been kidnapped and is trying to escape.
~ ~ ~
A figure was running from the boat, pursuing.Briand hit the ground in an explosion of sand, feet stinging, gulping air. She skidded on pebbles as she ducked beneath the dock and made for the city in the distance. She was Catfoot. She was fast. She had the advantage of surprise, a head start.
Gulls screamed overhead as she ran. She couldn’t hear the pursuer over the pounding of the waves and the crashing of her pulse. The sounds throbbed together, a cacophony.
A body slammed into her, knocking her forward. She hit the sand on hands and knees before she scrambled up, this time with the knife from her boot in her hand. The figure behind her caught her wrist and yanked her around.
They went down together hard on the ground. She couldn’t breathe. She stabbed blindly, blade meeting flesh along his ribs. He hissed as the knife clicked against bone.
He had her pinned down with one shoulder while he grappled for the knife with both hands. Black trousers, black shirt, long gray cloak. Necklace swinging in her face, a brown amulet. Face half-hidden by a red scarf.
The man wrestled the knife out of her hand and threw it into the waves. She was already pulling out the other one, the one she kept in the other boot, but he’d anticipated her move again, catching her wrist in his hand and twisting it hard. She dropped it.
Now he had taken two of her knives.
Briand lay still, hoping he’d drop his guard now that he thought she’d given up. There was a third knife. She drew in another breath. Her lungs ached.
“I surrender,” she said, to make him lower his guard.
His scarf fell away as he shifted, and shock lanced her like lightning, immobilizing her.
“Hello, Catfoot,” he murmured for her ears alone as the others came pounding up the shore.
~ ~ ~
I'll post more soon!