Yup I am going to be part of a number of anthologies over the next few weeks.  Thought I would toss out little bits of the tales that will be in them.  This one here is from A Different Kind of Hunt


Darkness, blessed darkness.  It covered the trail ahead and behind.  Making it difficult for those following but easy for the one being followed.  Eyes like a cat.  Called cat the whole of a young life and now more than pleased part of the name was true.  Avoiding hunters was easier when one could hear their clumsy footsteps, could see them in the moonless night.

Wyanet ran lightly, unburdened.  Though she knew that soon she would long for those things left behind, now she just ran for the pleasure of it.  No conforming to the rules and customs.  No walking slow and demure, eyes cast down so no possible husband would see her odd eyes.  Tonight she was free.  Free to be what she was born to be.  Whatever that was.  She had no idea.  She just knew that if she didn’t run she would be caught.  Caught and imprisoned until she was wedded and bedded to some huge, hairy, ugly man.  She didn’t care for that fate.  She wasn’t going to become one of the beaten down village good wives.  Never thinking of more than pleasing the beast she was married to or the next child she was to brood mare for.

No giving up her maidenhead to who the elders chose.  She grinned in memory of the shock on their faces when she announced she was no virgin sacrifice to their hearth gods.  Then she paused in her running as another memory came crashing across her mind.  That of gentle, loving Pili, of what the elders did to the sweet young man who had been her friend and her lover.  She closed her large amber eyes and a tear slid

gently down her cheek.  Never again would she hear his soft voice whispering her name in her ear.  Never again feel his arms holding her as they made love.

Was it really so wrong?  To love one another as they did.  The two naturally attracted to each other.  For were they not both misfits.  Orphans, raised in the homes of the masters their parents had served.  He raised as a bard, a player of gentle songs of love.  His mother had been a journeyman lutist before the fever took her.  Her master raised Pili with love and understanding but the village didn’t take well to a small, quiet boy.  The other boys were all large, hulking and hairy, like their fathers.  Small Pili was like a changeling to them.  They taunted him from the day his mother had stopped there and it only got worse as he grew not tall and wide but wiry and lean.