Wednesday, August 27, 2008

#10 SECRET AGENT Are You Hooked?


GENRE: Historical Romance

“You destroyed my life, and now you come here to beg?” Edward Courtland, Lord of Fairgate sneered. The hideous grin made his sunken eyes disappear even further into his pasty, wrinkled skin. “Well, go ahead, wife.” The word sounded like a curse on his lips. “Beg.”

Tabitha glared at her husband, her eyes burning with tears she refused to shed. Edward sat propped up on the chaise against his silken pillows. The liquid he swirled in the crystal goblet reflected the candlelight with a strange iridescent glow.

Edward, please.” Her voice was low and hesitant. She had avoided him whenever possible during the past ten years. Only the magnitude of her love for their son provoked her into his presence now. She cringed as Edward’s face twisted into a cruel scowl.

“You dare come here to beg from me? Get out of my sight, you murdering whore!” Spittle flew from his mouth as he thumped the armrest of the chaise with his free hand.

The hair on the back of her neck stood on end at her husband’s awful, biting words. Every instinct told her to flee, but she steeled herself to try again. Tabitha swallowed her rising panic and took a deep breath as she noticed an empty laudanum vial lying near the whiskey decanter. As Edward tauntingly resumed his agitation of the amber liquid, she realized if he consumed the deadly concoction in his hand, she would never get another chance to speak.


  1. I like the voice here.

    The only problem that I had with the story-line, is how does she know the bottle had been FULL of laudanum?

    Perhaps it was already almost empty BEFORE he poured it in his glass. I think by adding just a small blurb about HOW she knew it was full beforehand would make it a bit more believable.

    Otherwise, HOOKED!

    Good job!

    :) Terri

  2. I'm hooked!

    Great voice and a nice opening scene.

  3. Yeah, I'm hooked. I would so read one!

  4. Very nice. I'm hooked, though the laudanum vial seems a bit contrived. I'd hold judgment until reading on.

  5. Yay! Name calling and laudanum in the first 200 words- how delicious. This is an original, unique opening! I would certainly read on...

  6. Yes- Poisoning the idiot to start? I can work with that. I'm not sure where this will go but I'll at least turn to page 2 and give you the first chapter to impress me.

  7. A good start. Not my cup of tea, but I can see what readers of the genre would like about it.

    Good work!

  8. Wow... I think he's going to drink it. :O

    Um. Not my favorite genre, but I'm hooked and turning the page to see that guy's face turn an unfavorable puce color...


  9. Yup, I'd definitely read on. And great job on SHOWING the historical setting and the important elements of world building without Telling us.

  10. This one has problems on a few levels, IMO. The multitude of facial expressions in only 250 words is distracting (sneered, hideous grin, glared, cringed, twisted in a cruel scowl). The inconsistency of action: first Edward seems to enjoy and invites her to beg, then one minute later he shouts at her for begging. How would she know that this specific vial had contained laudanum, had been full, had been emptied into the whiskey decanter and would be a deadly concentration.
    The language of last sentence is a bit over the top, IMO.
    I'd read on, but if there would not be answers to these apparent inconsistencies soon, I'd put it aside.

  11. Yes. Love the voice and the cruelty of the husband. I'm soooo going to go read this now! Great job!

  12. Hooked.

    Nice, strong voice. Very engaging situation. Although, I'm a little confused at how she knew his drink was poisoned...and how are we to discern that he had not already drank the drink?