Tales of Faith Blog Tour - Book Excerpt

Friday, July 5, 2019

Today we have a book excerpt from "The Secret Slipper" by Amanda Tero. It is the entire prologue of the book, and it leaves me super excited to read the rest of the story!

Kiralyn Castle

Another grave. This time, a short one. Nes tossed the spade onto a patch of unturned earth
and stood straight. Mayhap the plague would take him next and spare him from seeing body after
body plunge from healthy to dead. He was old enough. His aching back provoked the reminder.
He looked at the hole in front of him. He’d rather die himself than bury another child—let alone
the lord’s child.
Turning from the empty grave ready to receive its burden, Nes walked toward the castle, his
footsteps slow. In a few hours, the blonde lass would be buried beside her mother—two fresh
graves, waiting to welcome Lord Kiralyn home. Nes shuddered. At least he was not the one
telling Lord Kiralyn. He only had to bury the child once the friar finished the service. Within
time, the lord would move on and find another wife. Mayhap raise another family. His riches
provided such luxury—unlike Nes, whose lot in life had never altered from when he was a lad.
Nes brushed his dirt-encrusted fingers on his breeches and stopped at the well. He drew a
bucket of water and let its weight settle on the stone ledge. The yard was silent, like it had been
for the past few days—as if people were afraid to breathe anymore.
Nes splashed water onto his face, letting the cool droplets run down his dry cheeks. If
someone would hand him a passage out—whether by death or by journey—he would take it.
Any place where he did not have to spend his days burying the losses from the plague.
He turned and looked at the castle behind him with a frown. Lord Kiralyn should be here, not
out fighting war with some other vassal. He had money enough to send an army of trusted
knights and stay behind himself, seeing to the needs of his own serfs here at his castle.
Laughter trickled down to the courtyard. Nes’s frown deepened as he looked up at the
windows of the castle. The days had been too long and sorrowful. Mirth shouldn’t come from the
castle for a long while. Especially not the morn after Ellia’s death.
A blonde head bounced in front of the open window. Nes squinted as he looked harder at the
window, rubbing a rough hand over his face. He was at the castle door before he realized he had
left the well.
Though no royalty was around, Nes found himself glancing over his shoulder before
entering. He hadn’t been in the castle before, but something wasn’t right—either his mind, or…
Things were as silent in the castle now as they had been in the yard. Nes hesitated before
rushing up the corridor toward the window he had seen from below. The lass was still there,
taking one uneven step after another. He brushed his forehead as he watched the limp.
“Child!” Sharp tones echoed through the passageway.
Nes slipped into the shadows as he recognized the voice as Ellia’s nursemaid, Bioti. Hadn’t

he been told that Bioti ordered the grave? Chills crawled through his body as he saw the
nursemaid lunge toward Ellia, jerking her away from the window.
“I told you to stay in the room.”
“Mo-er.” Ellia pointed in Nes’s direction. He flattened himself against the wall and held his
“Mother is dead. Now hush so we can leave.”
When the nursery door slammed shut, Nes stepped forward. He looked out the window, the
open grave in clear sight. If Ellia was alive, then whose
grave had he been digging? And where was Bioti planning on taking her? He turned and opened
the door that Bioti had entered.
Bioti spun around, her long skirts hiding the lass. “Nes!” Her slate-gray eyes hardened. “Shut
the door.”
He stepped into the room and pushed the door closed with his back. “Methinks you have
some explainin’ to do.”
“Methinks not.” Bioti stepped up to Nes, her young face smooth and unreadable.
“Whose grave be I digging?”
Bioti’s mouth lowered into a frown. She reached into her russet kirtle and pulled out a pouch.
She held it toward Nes, shaking it so that coins clanged against each other. “You are digging
Ellia’s grave.”
“Nay, I am not.” Nes looked from Bioti to the child, whose fingers had slipped into her
mouth. “What be ye doing?” Or should he ask what she was planning on doing with the little

Bioti straightened. “I see that as none of your concern.” Her fingers clenched the pouch.
“If ye touch the lass—”
“Fool. I’m not going to kill Ellia.” Bioti pressed the pouch into Nes’s hand. “You need to dig
a grave for me in the peasant’s plot—convince the others that I died too. Bury something in it; it
doesn′t matter what.”
Nes threw the pouch down and grabbed Bioti’s shoulders. Surely the plague had made her
mad. “Think calmly—”
“I have done nothing but think, Nes!” Bioti pulled away from his strong grip, her hands up
and clenched, as if ready to fight. “If you had seen it—what Lord Kiralyn did to my
husband—you would have been thinking, too. Aye, you would be doing a lot of thinking.”
“Bioti, that was years ago.” If she was reasonable, Nes might try to prove that, for once, he
stood with Lord Kiralyn. Bioti’s husband had usurped the lord’s authority. Lord Kiralyn had
every right to send him to the fields, just like he had sent dozens of other men. But no one
expected Phillip to contract scurvy. The lord could not be blamed for that.

“You think I do not feel the pain every day? Phillip is dead because of Lord Kiralyn. 
He deserves to lose his daughter. To feel the pain of her absence every morn the sun rises.”
Nes shook his head slowly. “He has already lost his wife.” He knew too well how that felt.
“Aye.” Bioti nodded her head, an evil smile creeping onto her face. “Even the hand of
Providence is against him.”
“Then let Providence take his child.”
“Nay!” Bioti looked back at Ellia, who was watching the argument with wide eyes. She
turned again to Nes, lowering her voice. “Have you never wanted a new life?
A life where you didn’t have to work so hard to gain too little? Look around you, Nes.” She
gestured with both arms.
Nes sighed and let his eyes travel around the child’s room. Dark carpet covered the floor,
scattered with fancy toys. A cradle stood in the corner, lined with a shiny material. There was
more in this one place than in Nes’s entire cottage, which he was forced to share with others,
since he had no family.
“You can live better than you live today.” Bioti’s soft words drew his attention. “I have
access to a whole chest of money.”
“What is that to me?” Nes kept his voice indifferent as his eyes rested on the blonde head of
a child who, as the daughter of a lord, would never experience toil or pain.
“It can all be yours. Dig yourself a grave too. Let people think you have died.”
“And who would be there to report my death?” Nes scoffed.
Bioti shrugged. “I’m sure you can find a way to make it happen.” Her gray eyes penetrated
into Nes’s, challenging him. “Journey to another village. Start a new life as a rich man. I
promise: no one shall discover the truth.” Bioti reached down and picked up the pouch. “This
alone holds more coins than you ever see in a season, and you can have it all today.”
“How do I know you will give me the rest?”
Bioti smiled. “Because you will walk away with it.”
Nonsense. Nes brought his hands up to massage his aching neck as he watched Bioti reach
under Ellia’s lacy bed. She pulled out a trunk and thumped it with her fist.
“I cannot lift it, but you can.” She tilted it enough for coins to tumble around on the inside.
Nes knelt beside the chest, secured with a lock. A passage out? Surely wishes didn′t come
true. Not for peasants. “ʻTis your money?”
Bioti rolled her eyes. “What servant has this kind of money? Lord Kiralyn will not miss it nor
will he miss you.”
Nes’s jaw tightened at her comment. If she was trying to remind him that he had no one to
care for him in his old age, she wasn’t missing her mark.
“The fine and mighty lord has enough to lend. Especially if it will guarantee the safety of his
precious daughter.” She straightened and picked up Ellia. “Take the chest. And if that is not
enough, I shall see to it that you live comfortably for the rest of your pitiful life.” Her jaw ticked
tighter as she spoke.
Nes looked from the chest to Bioti. “You think I shall trust you?”
“Aye.” Bioti’s eyes flashed. “This is far better than anything Lord Kiralyn would do for you.
When he returns, your chance will be gone.”
“And the lass. She’ll live?”
“If you take the money and flee, aye.”
Nes held Bioti’s gaze. “I will hold you to that.”
Bioti smirked. She backed away from Nes and placed her hand on the door behind him.
“Three graves. Cover them, then flee.”

------Purchase the eBook for $.99 on Amazon.------
About the Tour

Welcome to the second month of the Tales of Faith 3-Month tour! For the month of June,
Amanda guest posted on a dozen blogs, featuring “Befriending the Beast.” This month, we’re
getting a deeper look into book two of the Tales of Faith series: “The Secret Slipper.” Each post
by Amanda is unique to the blog—an inspirational post, an article on the writing craft, an excerpt
from one of the Tales of Faith books… you’ll just have to visit each blog to see what comes up.
;) Amanda will link to each blog on With a Joyful Noise, so check in every week and see what
blogs have a special Tales of Faith feature!

About Amanda

Amanda Tero began her love for words at a young age—reading anything she could get her
hands on and penning short stories as young as age eight. Since graduation, she has honed her
writing skills by dedicated practice and study of the writing craft. She began her journey of
publication with a few short stories that she had written for her sisters and continued to add to
her collection with other short stories, novellas, and novels. It is her utmost desire to write that
which not only pleases her Lord and Savior, but also draws the reader into a deeper relationship
with Jesus Christ.

Connect with Amanda

Email: amandaterobooks@gmail.com
Website: http://amandatero.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/amandateroauthor/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amandateroauthor/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/amandaruthtero/
Blog: www.withajoyfulnoise.blogspot.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/AmandaTero
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/amandatero
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