As nestpitch wraps up I’m left really satisfied. Like after an Easter dinner where you have to unbutton your pants and lounge on the couch for a few hours after.
I ended up with four requests. That’s four more than I thought I’d get.
I’ve met so many awesome people over the past week. Everyone has been so supportive, and I’m so excited to see my fellow Nestpitchers books published. There was some amazing talent.
Now let me tell you about my submission.
The King’s Assassin.
Chosen when a child, Lady Kathryn is trained to be a ruthless killer. She is destined to be the English king’s assassin. Only he and the guild master know it. It’s a secret that must be kept. Upon her return to England a murderous plot against King Aldrich is discovered.
Kathryn is shocked when he proposes marriage as a means for her to remain at his side at all times. An assassin has never married her king before! Agreeing for the sake of her oath to protect the ruler of the realm she becomes the Queen and his wife. What she doesn’t realize until it’s almost too late is that the traitor is much closer than she or the king ever imagined. Her fight for the king’s life very quickly becomes a fight for her own when her secret is found out.
“King Aldrich, I do not appreciate being summoned from the French court only to receive a letter demanding my services before even being introduced at court.” I sat up on the ornate bed and smoothed my hair.
“Forgive me, lady.” The kind bowed low, a sly smile played at his lips.
“Now, your majesty, what is the meaning of this?” I pulled the letter from my bosom and tossed it toward him.
“As it says I have a bit of a problem that needs tending.”
“My lord, I am not sure if the French ambassador informed you but I am not a hired killer. I am an assassin.”
“Yes, yes he told me.”
“I do not murder for the sake of murdering. You must settle your squabbles without my aide. If you don’t mind I shall return to my parents.”
“I did not send for you just to settle squabbles. There is someone threatening to over throw me.”
“That, sir, is a squabble.”
“He has already made two attempts on my life,” the king pleaded. A king pleaded with me for my help.
I stopped and took a few deep breaths. “What sort of attempts?”
“The first occurred last year. He had a servant attempt to poison me. I lost one of my favorite boys. The second was shortly before I sent for you. A crossbow arrow narrowly missed my heart.”
“I suppose that changes things a bit.” I sat back and pursed my lips into a tight line. My first mission.
“Yes. It does. And I would appreciate if you remember who you are talking to, Lady Kathryn.”
“I know exactly who you are, King Aldrich. You are the one who should remember who you are talking to. I may be Lady Kathryn, but I am also a bit more than that now.”
“You are still my subject.”
“I am an assassin, Aldrich. I am not the same girl that you played with in the court yard twenty years ago.”
His nostrils flared and he narrowed his eyes at me. If there was one thing that the king was not used to, it was a woman putting him in his place. “Just take care of this problem for me.”
“Of course, your majesty.” I dipped into another low curtsy and walked for the door.
“Are you doing it right now?”
“May I suggest using the bookshelf. You would be able to slip out and back in without anyone knowing.”
“Excellent plan, your majesty.”
The book-case took up the entire back of his wall. I watched as he pulled a leather-bound book off the shelf and reached his arm back. A pop and blast of dust revealed a narrow entry way.
“Follow the tunnel till the end. It will take you out to the courtyard. Wait there. I will ensure that I am alone, giving the assassin an opportunity to kill me. You can do it at that time.”
“Of course.” The small path had not been used in quite some time. It was dusty and there were cobwebs in all the corners. For a typical lady the space would have been rather insulting. For an assassin though, it was just another way to get the job done. Still it was my first solo mission. I wanted nothing more than my guide, Philip, to be with me.