Ashes of the Ylan [A Rama Empire novel]

"I thought you'd kill me," she croaked. "Not much honour if you cannot keep your promises."

Within the world of Convergera, lies the lands of Rama. Though the Rama Empire has long since been disbanded, the Capital still stands as a symbol of prosperity. The Antirian wars are over, but peace is soon disturbed as disaster strikes.

Sarashi is raised on the Wild Plains, but in a culture where freedom is everything, she is tied down by fear and expectations. Her people wants her to embrace her mother's legacy, her own fury screams for vengeance and her heart aches to belong. But when the war between the Sapphire Empire and the people of Rama flares up again, she'll have to make a choice between what she wants, and what is expected of her.

"Both standing on two legs, eyes level, the lion tried to push her into the ground. Her heart beat like never before as it stretched its neck over the spear to reach her face with its teeth. Pain made her dizzy as she growled back, a fiery rage star

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47. Ch 7: Amongst the Ylan (Part 1 of 8)

7

Amongst the Ylan

The Wild Plains

(1250 p. CP)

 

Plains. Sky. Stars, and tumbling green grass waves beneath the blue silk of the night sky, filled her mind as her vision swam.

A soldier had tapped the back of her head with something heavy, and she had dropped like a newborn calf. Everything had gone black.

She woke up dizzy, feeling sicker than she had that last morning, but unable to throw up. Apparently she had only been unconscious for a few moments, for they were tying her hands to the horse's tack and securing her thighs to the bands meant for packs. Her head hung upside down and made her stomach heave painfully.

Her wounded leg burned, but it felt like they had bandaged it to stem the bleeding, which made sense if they wanted her alive. At least for the time being, as her fingertips were going numb from the cords biting into her wrists, so they might not keep her for long if her hands did not matter to them.

They were after captives right from the beginning! She realised with a jolt. Even the one that had wounded her, had not killed her, and had instead tried to capture her. The same could be said for the one who had pressed Mya to the ground.

Do they know who I am?

The thought came unbidden and made her heart stop for a moment. Then it restarted as she had to fight a new wave of dizziness.

When she turned her head, she saw at least twenty soldiers up front. She could not wring her neck far enough to see the back, but she felt quite certain that she was at the middle of the train of soldiers. She needed to know if any of the others had been taken captive, but could not make her eyes focus on the moving shapes long enough to be certain. The corpse she had fallen over back at her camp haunted her, as did the one outside her tent.

Who did I lose? She asked herself and the Gods, shivering, as she murmured a prayer to the Dark God, that whomever they were may find peace. Lost in her thoughts and disoriented, she startled when the horse stopped. Her body got jarred by the tug of the sudden halt, and she grimaced.

Sarashi closed her eyes.

When a soldier cut loose her legs from the saddle and unhooked the ties around her hands, she fell to the ground. She managed to get one hand beneath her to take the brunt of the fall, her other hand uselessly squashed beside it. Hate and fear flooded through her.

The soldier took no notice of her glare, just took hold of her sarong and dragged her to a stand.

“Move,” he said.

The wounded leg almost folded beneath her a second time, but she managed to stay standing. Half pushed and half pulled, she was forced to a large tent in the middle of the imperial camp. As soon as they entered the tent, she was thrown down on her knees.

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