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Blood Oath by Amanda McCrina
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Blood Oath (Blood Oath #2)
by Amanda McCrina
Release Date: June 19, 2018
The aftermath of what happened in the capital has shaken Torien to the core. Battling self-doubt and bitterness, he must find his resolve as he is sent back to Tasso to quell a violent uprising on the Road.
But Torien will need more than resolve to navigate the deadly path before him. His troops are inexperienced and his new adjutant untrustworthy. A series of murder attempts leaves the whole camp on edge. As the threat of mutiny builds, the mission seems doomed before they even reach Tasso—and Torien is beginning to suspect it was meant that way. He and his men are being set up to fail.
With his best friend in the hands of the rebels, his commanding officer refusing to negotiate a peace treaty, and his own men ready to turn on him at any moment, Torien must decide once and for all how much he’s willing to sacrifice for an empire he no longer believes in.
Torien glanced up. “Send up the signo when you go, or see what’s keeping him. It’s been an hour since—”
Something moved stiffly against his fingers. A small, smooth-skinned, pink snake uncoiled from the silk and sank its teeth into the fleshy part of his hand, between thumb and forefinger.
He flung the box away by reflex. The snake clung to him. He stood with the thing dangling limp from his hand. Chion had dropped his cup and staggered up like a drunk. Torien drew his belt knife and cut through the body at the base of the head. The body fell with a soft thump on the sand. The head hung on stubbornly.
He looked up at Chion.
“Get it off,” he said. “I can’t.” His hands shook. He held out the knife. “Get it off.”
Chion took the knife. His face was pale green, the color of unripe olives. His teeth were bared in a grimace. He held Torien’s hand by the wrist and pried the head loose with the flat of the blade. The jaws sprang open. The head dropped on the sand, and Chion kicked it away.
Torien sank to his knees, leaning forward to steady himself on his hands. Chion crouched beside him.
“I’ll go for the surgeon,” Chion said.
Torien sucked a breath. His heart was racing.
“Advise the officers,” he said.
“Advise the officers to prepare defenses down the hill.”
For a moment, Chion was very still beside him. “Yes, sir.”
“It’s my fault, Chion.”
“I’ll bring the surgeon,” Chion said.
“Leave that knife,” Torien said.
Amanda McCrina has studied in Italy, taught English in Japan, and currently tutors Latin in Atlanta, Georgia. She received her BA in History from the University of West Georgia, and is now pursuing her MA. She writes stories that incorporate her love of history, languages, and world travel. She drinks far too much coffee and dreams of one day having a winning fantasy-hockey season.