Book Debut: Where Wild Ponies Ran by Bil and Bon Franks
MuseItUp or Amazon, but if you buy it on the MuseItUp you also get a free copy of the Caylith Songbook!
Back Cover Blurb
Now a beautiful young lady of seventeen, Caylith has several admirers. In spite of personal attractions and heartaches, she leads the first wave of of Faerie and Britannia immigrants to the shores of Éire (Ireland).
In this untamed pagan land now lives the one faithful person she has set herself to helping on his mission—the venerable priest Father Patrick. Once there, she meets a mysterious clansman who proves to be almost irresistible. Even the kindly Patrick warns her about the dangers of letting her “wild pony” run free.
But there is more to this land than romance, for rumors speak of an evil cattle baron who keeps slaves and another man bent on destroying her happiness. Finally, if Caylith and her band wish to live here in peace, she will have to seek out the throne of the high king himself.
Will Caylith succumb to the young men who seem too immature to understand her mission? Will her heart seek the mysterious, handsome man whom she may never see again? Or will she turn from love in order to help her friend Patrick?
One thing is certain—Caylith will live in the beautiful place called Ireland where she has brought her people, in the land WHERE WILD PONIES RAN, the last of The Twilight of Magic sagas.
I saw Liam, his athletic form stretched out beneath the canopy of a stand of young rowans.
“Liam. Dia duit,” I said guardedly. I stood still, but I did not approach him, still mortified at our earlier misunderstanding.
“Come.” He sat up, his back resting against a rowan trunk. He patted the ground next to him.
Without a translator, I felt helpless. Even with Brother Mark next to me this morning, I had managed to create a small disaster.
“Very well.” I sat at least two feet from him and waited for him to say something—anything—for I was suddenly speechless.
He held his hand out to me. I pretended not to notice. “Mo chara. Friend.”
“Yes, friends.” I smiled a little. It was getting hard to see his face in the quickening twilight, and I would have to either move closer or lose the thread of understanding that his eyes and face afforded.
He leaned forward then, and his surprising height allowed his face to get within six inches of my own. “Póg dom,” he murmured, and I knew right away what he had said. I moved my face away, but his hand caught my chin gently, and he directed my mouth onto his own.
Here was the fourth man I had ever kissed—but the very first mustache. I felt somehow pleased, somewhere between a tingle and a tickle, and I let myself yield to the delight. His lips were very warm. I let the sensation continue for a few heartbeats, for his slow, sweet tongue was just beginning to force my mouth open just a little…
“Oh!” I pulled back and stood.
I could just see Liam in the twilight, leaning back on one elbow, regarding me with amusement.
“Oh!” I fled into the gathering dusk.
At last back under my own little tree I had picked out earlier, I sank to my knees and expelled a great sigh. I wished I could learn to keep men’s attentions away until I was ready to handle the consequences. What was I doing wrong?
“My friend,” came a tiny bell-like voice. “Your eyes give you away.”
I straightened instantly, wary, knowing that my very thoughts had been plucked like ripe rowan-berries. “Magpie?”
“Yes, darling Caylith,” she said. “I will draw nearer.”
And then I saw little Magpie Feather; her freckled face, little snub nose, and jade eyes were slowly taking shape from somewhere behind my rowan tree.
“Ah, SoothTeller, I need your counsel.”
“I know.” Her carefree red hair, so much like my own, flew about her face.
“I wish I had you to talk to three weeks ago when I wondered at the nature of a kiss,” I confided. “Now it is well nigh too late, for I think I have kissed every kind of kiss there is.”
“I doubt it,” she said drily. “But please—ask me what you need to know.”
“Magpie, why does it seem that now of a sudden men want…something from me? I am no different now than a week ago or a month ago. But something has changed.”
“Caylith, what has changed is your way of looking at certain men. And they can see in your eyes that you, um, want them, at some level.”
“Then I must school my eyes to lie.”
“Then the trust will never have a chance to grow.”
“So what should I do, Magpie?”
“First, until you are more sure of your, ah, growing up, lean away from those same men, and toward something else.”
“But will they not think I am cold and uncaring?”
“Perhaps, but I think there needs to be something, or someone, that matters right now more than those men. They will see it, and they will respect it.”
“And what would that something be?” But of course I knew the answer.
“I want you to discover that for yourself, Caylith. And I am sure you will.”
Her little voice had become no more than a Faerie wind chime. I sank to my grassy bed, thinking about my old friend Father Patrick, and let her words follow me into sleep.
About the Authors
Bil Franks was born near Boston, Massachusetts. He studied at the University of Texas (Austin, TX). Bil is a USAF retiree who has learned the finer points of small arms, martial arts and military history. He is also an avid reader of Fantasy literature. Bil has loaned his extensive knowledge of these fields to the three books of The Twilight of Magic saga. His insights into military matters means that males as well as females will enjoy reading the series.
Bon Franks hails from a small Nevada town. She earned a BA (English) and MA (Comparative Literature) from the University of Southern California. Bon’s interests include language and literature--especially the junction of the two. Her other interests in herbology, mythology, and folklore are revealed also throughout The Twilight of Magic Saga.
Bil and Bon now live in a small town in central Texas with several rowdy cats.