The Red Pearl (Excerpt 2)

This scene from The Red Pearl involves the evil wizard Horobah and the captured prince.  Disclaimer: this is an unedited draft and may or may not appear in the completed work.

“Come now, Princling. Have you no manners? Is it not customary for a guest to greet his host and thank him for his hospitality?”

Staring into Horobah’s colorless eyes was like looking into translucent ice in which small black bugs of pupils had been frozen. Malik dropped his gaze only to stare into the empty eye sockets of a small, fanged skull suspended from Horobah’s neck. The sight loosened his tongue.

“Are you not aware of the curse that will befall you if I am harmed? Surely you do not think having your minions do the deed will absolve you. The onus will be on your head. The curse will find you.” Malik wasn’t sure of this, but it seemed likely that the curse would have such provisions.

Horbah laughed, or at lest Malik thought that’s what is was. It sounded more like the mating cries of the ornigress than human laughter. But then, he reflected, Horobah may not be entirely human.

Princling, Princeling. That curse is only activated upon your demise. My hospitality does not include your assassination.”

“Your minions spoke of the Prince Vicus Kador assuming the throne upon my father’s death. If I live, he cannot become heir to the throne.”

“You err, Princling. He will assume the throne if you have disappeared.”

“Do you propose to keep me prisoner for the rest of my life, then? I promise you I will make your life miserable.I will continue attempting to escape until I become free. Then I will make your life even more miserable. I will be the Rijar Dominus and I will return — with all the power of the Rijarik Realm behind me.”

“You will not escape me, Princling.”

“I will. And what do you gain from taking this risk? What benefit to you putting Prince Vicus Kador on the throne?”

“I will gain power,” Horobah said as he spread his arms. The flowing sleeves of his filthy raploch burnoose hung from his upraised arms like wings. With his large, sharp nose, colorless eyes, and malicious grin, he looked like an immense bird of prey about to swoop down from the dais to attack Malik. “I will have control. I will have Rijarik Realm. And when I have Rijarik, I will take Rhitwizah Queendom.”

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