- Here's another excerpt from one of the first chapters. 'Rhett is
tidying up after the dramatic murder at the end of Insufficient Mating
'Rhett's gaze dropped to some scattered, mismatched tarot cards on the
thickly carpeted floor.
Someone should pick those up.
The killing of Django had been tidier than the cleanup. The cards had
been knocked from a table by a contingent of Tarrant-Arragon's Star
Forces as they otherwise efficiently removed Prince Django-Ra's corpse
into the gaudily lit, everlasting night on the Dark Side of Eurydyce's
Having set aside his glass of something-like-tea, 'Rhett sighed and
went down on one knee. Leave it to the male Cinderella of the family
to clean up!
The first upturned card was prominently labeled THE LOVERS. Many of
Aunt Tarra's tarot decks depicted a nude male and a female entwined
with a large, phallic snake, suggesting an Adam and an Eve.
This Lovers card wasn't like that. The lone male was fully clothed, as
if Prince Paris of Troy might have been hunting when the three
scantily clad goddesses waylaid him and insisted that he should judge
their charmsand weigh the attractions of their bribesand award a
golden apple to the loveliest of the most powerful and vindictive
goddesses in the pantheon. It must have been the most depraved beauty
contest of human Greco-Roman mythology.
What is it about this version of the Lovers card that infuriates me?
'Rhett's lips tightened in disapproval; his pulse sped up.
Although his three half brothers jeeringly called him a killjoy and a
cold-heart, he wasn't the type to go into a sexually repressed lather
over a vision of a female flaunting her considerable charms. What
pushed his buttons was that the myth behind this particular card
glamorized the vices he found most abhorrent. Bribery. Corruption.
Adultery. Sexual exploitation. Irresponsible sex
Out of the corner of his eye, he thought he saw Tarrant-Arragon flash
a glance at him, then look away.
The beribboned Goddess of Love was holding out the promise of her
bodywhich she'd no intention of deliveringto inflame the judge's
lust so that he'd give her what she wanted.
I can't stand females who try that! It reminds me of
Electra-Djerroldina. Damn. I didn't mean to think about her!
He was too much of a gentlemale and a diplomat to dwell on Electra's
shocking indiscretion not four months ago. Since that time he'd never
mentioned her or her grossly insulting proposition. Until seeing this
card, he'd never thought of her. Not deliberately, anyhow.
The goddess looked like Electra. Not that 'Rhett wanted to see Electra
ever again, let alone wearing no more than a wickedly knowing smile
and rumpled ribbons fluttering between her legs and around her perfect
Disquieting memories flashed under his guard.
"Prince Djarrhett, you " Electra had cooed at the aborted Mating
Banquet, the first time they'd come within speaking range of each
other. Her bee-stung lower lip pouted as if she were blowing kisses on
the oooh sounds.
She'd spoken for his ears alone, but her smoky gaze had been directed
out across the banqueting throng. Anyone watching might have supposed
that she was mouthing a silent greeting to someone else.
Damnable female! She'd asked him to knock her up, and she hadn't had
the decency to look at him. How insulting was that!
I might be looking for a couple of Beta Readers, if anyone is
interested. A Beta reader receives a copy of the galleys of Knight's
Fork, in other words an unbound stack of paper.
It's the story, and it's a free read, and the reason an author sends
out galleys is in the hope that a reader will report back what she
liked best about the story, to help the author target topics for
starting intriguing discussions on blogs and noticeboards etc.
rowena at rowenacherry dot com
Is anyone interested?