The previous Sassy Saturday post can be read here: A Survivor of the Siduban Chaos Explosion
This post will be the last excerpt from A Mage's Power. Next week will be the start of Journey to Chaos book 2: Looming Shadow.
Specifically, this excerpt comes in three parts. This is necessary for three of Kasile's highlights in the climax. They're spread out because of a second battle taking place at the same time. Also, I deleted ten words from this except because of a spoiler.
For a moment, Kasile looked ready to smack Dengel. She inhaled, exhaled, and said, “You're right. This is a palace coup. Time is of the essence.”
She said no more on the subject. Instead, she looked for her goal. She found a leather vest reinforced with metal plates that spilled into a short skirt. She pulled it on and strapped a camail around her neck. For her legs, she found a pair of knee-length leather boots and, for her arms, a pair of leather gloves and a buckler. She twisted her long hair into a tight bun behind her head and covered it with a metal helmet. As a final touch, she attached a short sword to her waist. All of it had seen better days, but the effect was impressive: Kasile had transformed from a prison wretch into a warrior.
Fine! You think that's impossible? Me defeating all these guards by myself is impossible!
Exactly! So we should just gi . . .
Before he finished the thought, two guards collapsed, their chests punctured by mana claws. That's two! Kasile's next target was the guards holding her arms. She retracted her claws, re-aimed, and extended them a second time. That's four! Severed chains flailing, she dove at the guards who were restraining Siron. That's six! The two remaining guards drew their swords. Siron head butted one and Kasile pounced on the second. Seven! The princess cut her knight's chains and together they killed the last escort. Eight! They stood back-to-back as the soldiers regrouped.
Kasile and Siron were surrounded. After the element of surprise wore off the soldiers became hard to kill. They enclosed the teenagers and parried all of their attacks. Siron tried to break their circle and get his back to a wall, but they easily thwarted his attempt. The only reason he and Kasile were not yet dead was their restraint. Like the others, they hesitated to seriously harm their country's princess (spoiler!). A big man with a hammer knocked Siron over and a skinny one with a lance struck Kasile in the rib cage with its shaft. Their loyalty didn't preclude simple incapacitation.
The knight leaped to his feet. Despite full armor, his stamina held steady, but the same could not be said of his princess. After the eighth soldier, Kasile's claws wavered and bounced off the ninth. She shut them off and stole a sword from a dead man, but the professional soldiers disarmed her easily and Siron had to save her. She dropped behind him and fired mana bolts, but even those were useless against her enemy's armor. By now, her breath came in gasps and sweat soaked her gauntlets.
“Your Highness, I will finish them. You may rest now.”
Kasile stood up straight and said, “Whatever happened to 'ladies first'?”
“Your Highness,” Siron said drily, “I doubt whoever created that had battle in mind.”
"(Spoiler!)“ (Spoiler!) called over the clamor. "Though some women may bear arms, the same cannot be said of gently bred ladies such as yourself. Your body is exhausted, that much is obvious, but your spirit is weak as well, isn't it? Those spirit claws take more out of you than you thought, don't they? Surrender and I will switch your cell from the dungeon to your bedroom.”
He ducked a mana bolt. “Come on! Die by the hand of a 'gently bred lady'!”
A Mage's Power, and the rest of the Journey to Chaos series, are available for purchase at: http://smile.amazon.com/A-Mages-Power-Journey-Chaos-ebook/dp/B00AVMAISG
To learn more about the heroines of Journey to Chaos, visit Tvtropes at: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Literature/AMagesPower.