Eyes of the Beholder
Miri's eyes were stolen from her. She's been hiding in plain sight for most of her life living as a farmer with her dear friend Gibran. Her comfortable world is shattered when a man by the name of Niklaus saves them from a group of bandits on their journey home. He claims she's the lost Princess, the rightful ruler of the realm and as her guardian, he intends to help her take her place as Queen.
But - She doesn't want it back. She lost her ability to see the world as she once did and she's not a pure Queen like her mother and grandmothers before her. It's better for the realm to suffer under the current Queen, Sorella. She doesn't intend to fight the sorceress, she's better off living in the shadows as she has for the last twelve years of her life.
Oh Miri, fate has other plans for you, dear.
When Sorella sends her demons looking for her, Miri must decide what's more important - her quiet life as a farmer or the lives of the people she was born to protect?
Excerpt from Eyes of the Beholder
Miri stared at the grey trees and overcast sky. She yearned to see the lush green leaves, or the crystal blue sky and the sun shining on the land around her. She sighed, but she was cursed to see shadows. Her eyes were stolen from her long ago, now there’s empty holes where they used to be.
At least she still has her magic. It's the only reason she's able to see the grey scenery and the colorful auras outlining the people around her.
She wasn't always like this.
No, she used to have the power to see the tiny atoms flowing through blades of grass, the ebb and flow of molecules that swam through the seas and the specks of precipitation in the wind. But what she missed most was seeing the vibrant pulsing hearts of the people and creatures in the realm. Her eyes gave her power over these lands; they let her read people's minds and speak to animals. They were the eyes of the realm and she was born to be its protector.
"That's the last delivery, Miri." A young man with sparkling blue eyes and a mop of thick golden blond hair smiled, lifting himself into the carriage next to her. The wagon groaned under his weight as he settled into his seat.
"Good, let's go home, Gibran." Miri smiled at his pulsing red aura. She watched his red arms whip the horses into motion and sighed as they began the journey back to their small farm on the outskirts of the Kingdom of Arran.
Miri listened to the horse hooves trot steadily along the path. She watched the shadowed scenery pass them by, her mind drifting to another time – the time before Queen Sorella ruled the realm and subjected her people into servitude.
Miri jumped in her seat looking around for that familiar voice. Her heart thumped in her chest. She hasn’t heard the sound of that voice in years, not since she was a child.