Things are coming together, and soon Lumina and the Goblin King will be out for all and sundry to read. I can’t wait!

No. Really. I can’t wait!

So here is an excerpt. Thanks to my editor, Kathy, for suggesting which scene to share with you all.

Lumina slept the day away, not waking till late in the afternoon. Which, in and of itself, was not really a surprise; unlike the being she saw standing at the edge of her glade when she awoke.

The white stag stood just beyond the trees’ shadow, bathed in brilliant light. He was a sight to behold with his pale coat sparkling like new fallen snow beneath the sun’s caress. 

He must have been waiting for her to wake, because as soon as she saw him he started towards her. Even beneath the dimness of the trees he was magnificent, glowing like the moon at her zenith as he made his way through the glade to where Lumina was. 

Stopping at a respectful distance away from her, he lowered his head to regard them with his moonstone eyes.

“Goblin King,” she said, standing at his approach and offering him a curtsy. “You were not expected.”

Puzzlement filled his pale eyes for a moment, but then he slowly nodded.

“Perhaps I should have sent a messenger ahead,” he said and Lumina worried that it had not been puzzlement, but offense that she had seen in his face. She hastened to make amends.

“It is not to say that you are not welcome,” she assured him, although her statement was just on the edge of truthfulness. 

A whisper of whiskers tickled her arm as the silver cat passed her, boldly walking up to the white stag. 

“No cream, no fish, no cheese?” he said as he rubbed his head along the stag’s jaw, his tail curling impudently over the elegant muzzle as he did so. “Then why did you come to see me?” 

“I did not come to see you, you impertinent thing. I came to see your mistress,” the white stag retorted. “Good afternoon, lady. I realize my coming was unexpected but I was hoping that you would join me for a few hours.”

“You wish to spend time with me?” she asked, a bit alarmed at such an idea. “To what end?”

“To what end,” he chuckled, leaning even closer as he did so. Soft breath whispered over her, cool and fresh like the air just before a storm. “Because I wish to court you. I would rather it was the price of your heart, not the price of your debt that brings you to me on our wedding day.”

Lumina found her heart pounding at the thought, but whether it was with anticipation or terror she could not say.

“And I have things I would share with you. Things you might find of interest,” said the white stag, retreating a little. “Come with me, fair one, and I promise that you will be as safe as if you had never left your glade.”

“And will you return me to my glade?” she asked, with more confidence than she felt.

The white stag nodded his head. “My oath in it, before the church bells finish tolling the midnight hour.”

The silver cat gave a little sneeze. “Well… then… there is no reason for me to go,” he said.

“What do you mean, Dearest?” Lumina asked, more than a little unnerved at the thought of being alone with the Goblin King, even in his guise as the white stag, which was admittedly less intimidating. 

“No cream, no milk, no fish, no reason for me to go,” he said, sitting down to wash his ears. “But don’t worry about me, Mistress,” the silver cat said, pausing to look at Lumina with big round eyes. He blinked once, slowly; the picture of cat innocence.

“My Lady, I would be happy to carry you,” the white stag said soothingly, tilting his proud head so that she might easily sit on his antler if she chose to. And so she did, somewhat hesitantly, glancing at her treacherous companion, who only blinked innocently at her again. She wrapped her arm around the burnished silver brow tine as the stag lifted his head smoothly.

“I will see you soon, Dearest,” Lumina called back as the stag stepped out into the late afternoon light. The silver cat closed his eyes tight, giving her a knowing cat smile, before going back to his washing.

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