The Blackstone Inheritance by Patricia Scholes is about T’lana, a young red headed girl framed for murdering the Prince who must prove her innocence or die. Cranog has different plans for the girl who is his only way to reach the Blackstone.
‘The Blackstone Inheritance‘ by Patricia Scholes is the tenth story in Volume One of Fiction Shorts, The Writer’s Chest. It is a fantasy fiction short story with some suspense, action, and twists and turns you won’t believe. Here’s a little teaser of ‘The Blackstone Inheritance’ for you:
The whole tavern silenced, startled by the city guards who dared to enter a place in the Warrens. Even the gestures halted mid-air. The barkeep made the first move. He scowled. Then he placed his open palms flat on the counter — an unmistakable signal. No one was to draw a weapon.
Voices, lower now, resumed speaking. Some patrons, not trusting the purpose of any guard, slipped out the back. Most, curious about the reason their sanctuary had been violated, simply stared, their hands slipping under tables, inside their clothing for a favorite weapon, no matter what the barkeep wanted.
“I pay you well,” the bartender bellowed. “Why are you here?”
“A maid.” The guard who spoke took a step forward. “A wench with red hair.”
One of the barmaids, her hair wrapped in a swatch of silk, set the mugs she carried onto a nearby table, and edged away. Her face, always pale compared to the swarthy complexions around her, whitened. She might have reached the exit, but at the door stood a transparent black-garbed figure, its smile a knife-edge, its eyes black, malevolent pools.
“Do you betray us, T’lana?” Hardly more than a whisper, his voice turned her flight to stone.
“Face them,” he commanded.
The girl turned, her eyes flitting first to the bartender. He returned her gaze with hostility.
In desperation she glanced at the other barmaid who stood unexpectedly at her elbow. She too was pale, another misbegotten rarity, but her hair was brown, and her eyes an angry green.
“Does he mean you?” she shrilled as she snatched away the silk covering T’lana’s hair.
“Linet!” She reached for the silk, as if she could hide in time the cascade of damning curls that tumbled down her back. Her eyes followed the silk—and met the guard’s solid brown gaze.
He touched one of her brilliant locks. “Red Hair, where did you spend last night?”
“I was with the Prince last night! He can vouch for me!” She tossed her head and raised her chin.
“The Prince?” Linet’s malice grew. “You?”
“Can I help it if a prince takes notice of me?”
“Did he also notice the poison on your blade?” the guard asked. “You should have finished the job before you left him. His last words were ‘ti lana’.”
Cranog, her master, had set up the meeting between T’lana and the Prince. He smiled to himself when he realized she had intended to find a way to get away from his control, and his cruelty. His goal, as it had always been, was to keep her close.
She was the last of her people and the last one who could find a way to the coveted Blackstone that her people had taken when they vanished from the city. Cranog intended to find a way to gain access to that coveted Stone (T’lana’s Blackstone Inheritance) and she was the last one with any remaining magic to find it.
And she would reward him when he rescued her from the Palace prison. Oh, yes.
Enjoy ‘The Blackstone Inheritance‘, a suspenseful and brilliantly written fiction short story that will keep you reading until the very end.
Patricia Scholes is an author inspired by the very children she fostered. Not every mother chooses to take others into her home, but Patricia lived her adult life by opening her home to others. The stories of her foster children, often sad and terrible, touched her deeply, making her want to share with others what most of our at-risk children faced daily.
How did these children mature? With too little strength and health in their backgrounds from which to draw, many made unsafe and self-destructive choices, especially at first. Their first choices rarely defined their life. They became strong and independent adults, able to meet the challenges of life head-on.
Patricia Scholes sees these children as heroes. They survived the poor parenting of their caregivers. They survived an inadequate system. They learned new ways to live and thrive.
Their successes inspired the ‘Lorekeeper of the Tapestry’ book series, the first of which is ‘Her Darkest Beauty’, a story about Karra, a young woman living in a city occupied by Nevian military.
As a child, Karra witnessed her father’s murder. Wanting revenge, she allows an alien entity into her mind to give her strength and to satisfy her desire to destroy her enemies. This creature, one of those brought to her planet by the Nevians, has trapped her in its dark, self-serving prison. The story is her struggle to free herself from the entity whose sole purpose is to feast off her darkest emotions.
“All my foster children have dark pasts”, Scholes said. “They know all about hating and hurting, and too little about loving and forgiving. I only take in kids in their late teens who have already done everything wrong, and now want to change. I can’t parent all children, but I have a special place in my heart for these older ones, the ones people would rather lock away and forget. They are redeemable. I give them a healthy home where they can find redemption.”
Patricia Scholes speaks to groups about parenting teens, foster parenting older children, making your own home a healthier place, and even surviving difficult times. To date she has published three books. ‘Her Darkest Beauty’ is the first of her science fiction books series: ‘Lorekeeper of the Tapestry’. A sequel to this book, ‘Steps of the Dance’, will be out later this year.
Last year she published ‘Surviving Hard Times – A Livingbook’, to help people who are struggling through these financial times gain strength, hope and some practical self-help tools. She is co-editing the history of The Fox and Abd al-Qadir, a book about a prisoner of war during the French and Algerian war in the 1840s.
All three books are available through Amazon.com.
“This doesn’t explain all the years I worked on one writing project or another between jobs. I have A.D.D., so working for someone else takes nearly all my energy, leaving very little left over for writing. I’m almost sixty-five years old, and I doubt anyone will hire me now. Three years ago I stopped trying to find work and went on early retirement.
“It was the best decision of my life. I now have five books finished and four of them published. But my novel, ah, that’s my baby. That’s my creative heart.”