About Moxie Girl Musings

Moxie Girl Musings is about starting over from square one after tragedy impacted my young family. It's filled with stories of triumph, struggle, snafus, hopes, and dreams. Sometimes there will be features from other writers that I like and every so often I'll include an original short story, but normally I simply write what's on my mind at the time. Welcome to my unfiltered true-life story as I figure out this thing called life. http://www.amberleaeaston.com

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Dragons, adventure & heroes…what could be better than that? #asmsg #YA #fantasy

I'm happy to host a delightful author and his latest release today on Moxie Girl Musings. If dragons, heroes, and adventure don't say "moxie", I don't know what does! Enjoy this peek into Bentwhistle's world and thank you, Paul Cude, for sharing it with us today.
A bit about the book…

After the harrowing and near death experience at the talons of the evil dragon Manson, Peter Bentwhistle the reluctant human shaped dragon hero, finds himself on the slow path to recovery.

Helped by his dragon friends, Tank and Richie (both in their human forms), he finds solace in his new found friendship with the dragon king. But the three friends are soon unwittingly drawn into a deadly plot, when a straight forward meeting with the monarch, sees them helping an injured dragon agent, straight back from his mission in Antarctica with news of a devastating encounter with another ancient race.

Blackmail, intrigue, forbidden love interests, a near fatal mantra gone wrong, a highly charged rugby match in which Tank takes a beating, combined with enough Laminium ball action to please dragons the world over, all feature.

Explosive exploits, interspersed with a chilly backdrop and unexpected danger at every turn, make for an action-packed, electrifying adventure.

An excerpt
He was only a few seconds away from drowning now. He could feel his mouth about to open, and knew there was absolutely nothing he could do to stop it. Unexpectedly, a haze of light appeared through the bubbles up ahead. Clamping his mouth shut with all his might he surged forward. Black spots started to cloud his vision, but he pushed himself on. Rising upwards towards the light, Flash had no option but to open his mouth. His body continued its journey to potential salvation as the freezing water poured into his throat. Amazingly he broke the surface of the stream, out into the bright Antarctic daylight. The spots before his eyes were getting worse; only tiny openings in his vision remained. With both his arms outstretched, he pulled himself for all he was worth out of the freezing cold stream and onto the snow covered bank. Turning onto his side, he immediately began throwing up all the water he’d swallowed. The cold nibbled at his wet body, piercing him like a poker. After the excess water had left his body, Flash passed out on the snowy river bank, only inches away from the bitter stream that had nearly cost him his life.

Barely five minutes later, Flash’s survival instinct kicked in, and in a staggering display of stubbornness he awoke, wishing with every part of his body that he hadn’t. Feeling worse than an alcoholic’s hangover, and shivering on a national level, he knew that he had to get back to the dragon domain. Nothing else existed, only that one thought. Getting to his feet, he staggered slightly and then fell back down to his knees. His head was so muzzy that he just couldn’t concentrate. Two deep breaths later, he was back on his feet. He had to get a grip, get his bearings and find a way to get away from this hellhole and back to the dragon world. Looking back round at the body of water he’d come out of, he found that the stream only broke the surface for perhaps twenty feet or so before disappearing back underground. The bank and the surface of the stream were shielded from the normally roaring wind by a wicked looking rocky overhang that hovered menacingly over him at the moment. As Flash took all this in, a little voice in the back of his head said,
“They’ll come after you. As soon as they’ve recovered, they’ll come.”

He knew what he had to do. Still shivering violently, he took off his precious watch, noting the time and GPS location of where he was before he did so, and then set it down in the snow. Rubbing his hands together, he tried to get some feeling back into them and his fingers before he went any further. Not seemingly making any difference to his fingers, he set about turning the watch into an explosive device. He knew how to do it of course, and under normal conditions it would only take a few seconds, but his cold fingers made it hard to press all the small buttons in the right order. At the rate he was going, he’d be lucky not to blow himself to smithereens.

Eventually, after lots of fiddling and amazing amounts of concentration, Flash managed to set the proximity detection function. Setting the countdown to sixty seconds, so that he had enough time to get out of range, he depressed the button to start the countdown, leaving the watch on the icy bank, just pressed into the snow. After the timer had counted down, any movement at all in a radius of thirty metres would set off the explosive device in the watch. Flash turned away from the watch and started to jog slightly, buoyed by the knowledge that he had once again escaped certain death by the very skin of his teeth.
A few paces into his jog, a loud splashing noise from the stream caused him to turn round. A vision from hell appeared, dripping wet, on the water’s edge. The golden-coloured naga who’d captured him earlier, the one that he’d last seen flailing around on the floor of the prison barely conscious, stared at him from thirty feet away. Flash couldn’t believe what he was seeing. Another forty seconds or so and the naga wouldn’t have been a problem, because the explosive Flash had just planted would have gone off, either killing the naga, or trapping it below the surface of the stream for good. Waves of exhaustion washed over Flash, begging him just to lie down in the snow and call it a day. He couldn’t believe that he’d come so far, avoided death by a gnat’s... well, whatever it was, only for it to end like this. If it weren’t for the deadly seriousness of the situation, he could definitely see himself laughing about it all.
The naga cocked its head to one side, its gills expanding and contracting at an unnatural rate. Yellow fluid ran down both sides of its head, from two tiny little ears.

‘Of course,’ thought Flash, ‘I bet it can’t hear a thing, after being hit by that sound wave from the king. If I could string this out a little, I may still be able to get out of here yet.’

Flash and the naga were both still standing well within the blast radius of the explosive that was about to go off. The only difference between the two was the fact that Flash was fully aware of this, and the very deaf naga was most certainly not.

Flash knew that with two seconds to go, the alarm on the watch would beep constantly, priming the proximity sensor. After that, anything that moved within the radius would set off the explosive charge, which in turn would bring down the rocky overhang above. And Flash was still very much within that radius.

The look on the naga’s face was one of pure evil. If ever the phrase ‘murder in his eyes’ was apt, it was here and now. Flash knew he had to play for time, keep the naga in the blast radius, and avoid being killed. At least the adrenaline pumping through his near perfect replica human body had made him forget about how cold he was. Putting a panicked expression on his face, Flash waved his arms about in the air, pointing in every different direction. At the same time he mouthed absolute gibberish towards the naga. The naga eyed Flash suspiciously. Flash fell to his knees in the snow, trying to look injured and appear absolutely no threat whatsoever. He continued to mouth more gibberish towards the naga. It seemed to be working, for the time being, anyway. The naga hadn’t moved from the spot by the bank of the stream. Turning its head, trying to get some of the blood from its ears, the serpent-like monster tried hard to make out what it was that Flash was trying to say. Flash knew he was going to run out of time soon. His best guess told him that there was still about twenty seconds left on the watch before the proximity sensor kicked in and it looked like the naga was about to run out of patience.

‘The only thing that might buy me some time is to surrender,’ thought Flash. Ever so slowly he unzipped his jacket and tossed it into the snow. Carefully, all the time watching the gold-coloured naga, he put his hands into the air, to signal that he’d surrendered. Once again he mouthed gibberish at the naga as he held his hands firmly above his head, hoping to buy himself just a few more seconds. The naga afforded a strange smile as Flash raised his arms and surrendered, a smile that turned to confusion when the naga couldn’t understand what it was Flash was mouthing towards him.

‘Whatever it is,’ thought the naga, ‘it seems to be important.’

Shaking its whole body, and flicking a mound of snow from its tail, the naga started to move towards Flash, its gills still moving furiously. A calm sense of acceptance washed over Flash as he stood motionless, his hands still above his head. Abruptly the naga stopped, looking down at the snow towards where the watch lay, only six feet away from him. The watch started to beep constantly and lights on its dial flared into existence. A look of horror crossed the naga’s ancient face as it realised it had been tricked. Flash’s eyes locked onto the nagas’ for a split second and he just managed to mouth the word, “Sushi,” before he turned round and threw himself for all he was worth in the opposite direction to the watch and the naga. All of this happened in roughly two seconds. The naga tried to flee.

About the author…
As for me.........I look after my two girls, and when they're at school I'm a teaching assistant. I love playing hockey, and help coach kids, mine included. Other interests include reading, building computers, squash, cycling, great days out with my wonderful wife and kids, as well of course as WRITING! I'm just about to publish my second book in the series, called  'Bentwhistle The Dragon in A Chilling Revelation', which is due to be released on 1st March 2014.

Buy Bentwhistle the Dragon, Chilling Revleation 

And while you're on Amazon, pick up the first Bentwhistle the Dragon in a Threat from the Past (currently for free kindle download!) 

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