Today my novel Moon of the Goddess is available as an ebook from Prizm Books. Set in ancient Greece the story follows a kidnapped princess and her rescuers into a tangled web of ambition and danger. Conflict between an ancient earth Goddess, Eurynome and the Olympian Poseidon underlies the story. Here is an introduction to one of the rescuers, though you won’t find this particular scene in the book itself.
Panacea walked barefoot across the sand. The waves of the Gulf of Corinth lapped gently, and she let the warm water wash over her tired feet. She did not remember the last time she felt this tired.
Or this frustrated. What am I doing racing across Greece with this prince and his companion?
She knew the answer to her own question. The mother goddess had placed a bloodred moon in the sky, a warning of danger that everyone in the shrine could read. So, because she was the best rider among the goddess’s servants, she was the one chosen to join the quest of the prince Melanion to rescue his kidnapped sister.
Panacea felt the eyes of the men on her back. They had not wanted to take her along, confident of their own power as they were. Melanion also seemed suspicious because her father Asclepius was an Olympian god. But her father had turned to the Mother long ago, and left behind the ambitions of the gods and goddesses of Olympus. He had taught her to follow the ancient patterns of the earth.
If only my father had left me enough connection to know what is happening! No point in wishing. He had severed those ties thoroughly, and she had no way to know what danger she rode toward at this headlong pace.
Panacea massaged her sore shoulder. Her mare Nalia kept up with the stallions of the men just fine, but as much as she loved her white horse, neither of them had made a journey like this at speed. Her muscles ached, and there were blisters on her thighs. The blisters she would rub with a special ointment when she returned to the fire, and they would be gone by morning. The muscles would take longer, but she knew they would get better each day.
A single wave pushed over her feet and up her ankles. She looked down and wondered if the rising tide was a sign. Surely it was not an omen that events would overwhelm the captured girl.
Mother, goddess of the red moon, what is the danger we race toward?
She closed her eyes and felt for the presence of the goddess. The voices of the men came toward her on the light breeze though she could not hear what they said.
The prince is so short sighted, concerned only about his sister. She corrected herself. He was focused on what had happened to her, but he also saw the danger if his city of Tiryns went to war on the city the kidnappers came from. He wanted to prevent wide spread conflict. That she appreciated. These days, most of the leaders of the cities of Greece put ambition and pride above all else.
Panacea pushed the sound of voices aside and focused her thoughts on the goddess. Another wave lapped around her ankles, and she sensed gentle laughter, a call to open her eyes.
The edge of the moon had risen above the water and a silver-bright arrow of light ran straight across the waves to her feet.
I have been chosen, she thought. For whatever reason, I need to make this journey. Tiredness flowed from her feet as if washed away by the moving water. The choice to join this quest had been right, and if she kept connected to the goddess, the next choice would come to her.
The words of a hymn to the goddess came to her, and she raised her arms. Singing would help her focus. And help her sleep. She was going to need all her strength on this journey into unknown danger.