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“Rakshasa” by Alica Knight

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Rakshasa” is a Romance Novella by Alica Knight. Below is a synopsis:

Libby the Loser. That’s what everyone used to call me behind my back. I wasn’t popular, I wasn’t strong, I wasn’t brave.

All that changed after a chance encounter in a Canberra nightclub. Afterward, I began to dream; dream I was something else. A powerful creature of muscles and claws, something powerful and confident and everything I wasn’t.

I dreamed I was in love with a man I’d barely met.

The dream world is a beautiful, wondrous place, but there’s a shadow in my dreams. An eclipse, broken with a gunshot. Then I wake up.

Now my dreams are coming true. My body is changing for real. I’m shedding Libby the Loser like an old skin. I’m growing into something else.

But there are others. Others like me, and they don’t get along. People are disappearing. People are dying.

The shadow is falling over the real world, too, and everything has changed.

Alica has been kind enough to provide us with a sample from this story:

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The shotgun slug entered my right hip, blowing a hole the size of a penny through my body. I fell over backwards and I bled, and I bled, and I bled.

Rakshasa, the mythical were-tigers of India, are more powerful than humans. We can run as fast as a car, lift about two hundred kilos, take hits that would fell a man. We can appear as women and men, or as the great tigers, the hunting cats. We can heal grievous wounds.

Not these kind of wounds, though. We have limits. We aren’t immortal.

Blood gushed from the hole in a way I’d never seen blood do before. I could smell it; thick, coppery, pungent. That’s one thing you notice after you shift, your sense of smell, even in your human form, becomes much more powerful. I could smell the grass beneath me, the harsh acrid smell of gunpowder from the thin smoky trail rising from the wound, the faint smell of rain in the distance carried by a cool wind. It was going to rain soon but I’d be dead before the storm arrived.

Nineteen is an odd age to die. You’re over eighteen so you’re legally an adult, but really, you’re still just a kid. I hung out at the local mall, went drinking with my friends and otherwise did everything I did at age fifteen.

I was never going to be a wife. Never going to be a mother. I’d never watch another game of cricket. I’d never eat or drink anything again. I’d never walk or sing or laugh. Every single thing I was ever going to do with my life, my entire influence on this planet and the billions of people in it, was complete.

But it was okay. I was going to die to save the life of the man I loved.

I’d found someone whom I cared for with everything I had. Not just a boyfriend, an accessory, interchangeable and faceless. A soul-mate. Someone whose life was bound to mine.

My death would save him. My blood, the same blood pouring onto the grass beneath me, would be his salvation. A piece of myself, given freely.

That’s why I didn’t struggle, I didn’t resist. My wound, my torn and perforated flesh, burned with deep pain, but I didn’t press my hand to the entry point, I didn’t try to hold on to life.

I heard voices. The crack of shotguns, sharp and staccato, drowned out by the thunderous roar of my fellows. The Rakshasa, my coven, leapt upon the huntsmen and tore them to shreds with their powerful claws, ripping out throats with their teeth, clawing and biting and maiming and destroying the humans. Hurting those who hurt us.

Avenging me.

I let go. I let it all go, and I lay on my back in a growing pool of my blood, staring up at the sky as my vision drained away, and I saw the sun darken as the moon moved across it.

 

Kindle Version

© 2013, Steven R. Drennon. All rights reserved.

Filed under: Romance

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