Thursday, December 19, 2013

#Excerpt: ONDINE by Emma Raveling


     
I tracked her.
Feet slid soundlessly across the mat. Thick atmosphere, taut with anticipation, pressed in, carrying the heavy odor of sweat, cleaning bleach, and plastic. 
Adrenaline crackled through my veins like a live wire, pulsing in time to the audience’s hum of excitement.
She neared, feinting a few strikes, but not close enough to do any damage.
Two years ago, I’d won nationals in my age and weight category. Our constant moving had prevented me from repeating it.
But this time, I was so close I could taste it. Winning this sparring match would secure the state championship. Next would be regionals, followed by nationals.
If you’re still here in two months.
The thought unnerved me.
That was all she needed.
I caught the blur of her arm a millisecond too late. Her fist slammed into my right ribcage, impact ricocheting up my torso.
Referee stood. “Point. Blue!”
Damn it. A careless mistake.
I felt the weight of her eyes boring into my back, heard the disappointed criticism repeated over the years.
Not good enough, Kendra.
I mentally shook myself. Two minutes left in the match and I was already behind.
Ref’s arm dropped. “Fight!”
Everything faded and the entirety of my focus zeroed onto the brunette in front of me.
I had to win.
Sara Ruggiero, reigning champion, had excellent form and a technique honed through years of disciplined practice.
She danced just out of reach, movements fluid and in control. Her hands, covered in protective blue mitts, guarded her face. She was good, very good even, with an aggressive style fueled by anger.
And right now, she was pissed. The deciding round of her last championship in high school was with a newcomer a year younger than her.
We circled, darted forward and back. Attack and retreat. With each step, pain radiated from my ribs.
She smirked. Hurt?
I let my eyes harden. Show me what you got.
Her torso twisted, foot shifting back in preparation for a jodan kick.
Empath sensed her vulnerability, the twinge of discomfort along her lower back from an old injury.
Gotcha.
Leg arced toward my face in a perfectly executed high kick. I whipped aside at the last second.
Off-balance, she tilted slightly toward the right, leaving her back open.
I pivoted behind her and my right fist hammered her kidney. She stumbled forward, a cry escaping her lips.

Book & Author Details:

Ondine by Emma Raveling
(Ondine Quartet 0.5)
Publication date: December 19, 2013
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult

Synopsis:
“I shouldn’t get involved.”

Rebellious and headstrong, sixteen-year-old Kendra Irisavie doesn’t have much respect for authority. An ondine with the powerful gift of Virtue, she uses her tough attitude and Empath magic to navigate through high school and keep others away.

Because being an ondine also means keeping secrets.

Kendra and her mother are Rogue water elementals in the middle of an ancient war. They hide among humans, their survival constantly threatened by monstrous Aquidae demons. Along with a rigorous training regimen to mold Kendra into a lethal fighter, her mother has instituted four rules to keep her safe.

Trust no one. Relationships are weaknesses. Emotional attachments are dangerous. Be responsible only for yourself. But when Kendra witnesses a classmate in trouble, she intervenes and her decision to break the rules comes at a price.

Sometimes, humans could be more dangerous than demons.

Ondine is a short prequel novella for the young adult urban / paranormal fantasy series, the Ondine Quartet.


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AUTHOR BIO
I’m a fantasy writer who lives a slightly eccentric life with my accommodating husband and our charming, neurotic dog. I'm currently working on the Ondine Quartet, a young adult urban fantasy/paranormal series featuring a kick-ass heroine, powerful magic, and the complex world of water elementals.

I have a weird love of spreadsheets and organizational tools because they give me the illusion that I am somehow in control of the chaos that is my life. I adore beautiful art such as painting and sculpture, classical music, lyrical writing, and great graphic design. My all-time favorite books (as of this writing) are Immortality by Milan Kundera, 100 Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Beloved by Toni Morrison, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, and The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka.

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