It seems like there's always something to celebrate here at Midnight Tide Publishing, and this week, our focus is on DADS. Fathers, papas, daddies—the BIG Ds, if you will.
(. . . Probably forget that last one.)
In a twofold effort to showcase the writing styles of some of our authors while remembering to honor dads everywhere, we reached out to our pool of writers for dad-themed excerpts from our MTP collection of works. Below are six samples for your sneaksy-peeksy pleasure.
Before you read on, though, we'd love to know—What do you think of these excerpt-centered posts? Would you like to see more? If so, tell us what other themes you'd like to see featured. Drop your comments below, and we promise to read 'em! (And if you're lucky, we might even steal them.)
One big, collective HAPPY FATHER'S DAY to all the BIG Ds out there from your friendly neighborhood publisher, MTP!
The Castle of Thorns by Elle Beaumont
Gisela choked on a sob. “But if you go, you’ll surely die.”
“No, my sweet girl, no. Have some faith in me—in Wurdiz. I will return to all of you.” Werner closed the distance between them and embraced her. He brushed his lips against her curls and sighed. “This won’t be goodbye, so please don’t think you’ll be rid of me that soon.”
Her shoulders slumped forward as his arms encircled her. With the decision cemented in his mind, there would be no changing it. “When do you leave?” Gisela murmured against his chest.
“Tomorrow morning.” He stepped back, tilting Gisela’s head so he could brush a kiss to her forehead. “I’ll return. I swear it, my Mousy.”
Swallowing roughly, Gisela fought to believe his words. There was no promise he’d return, and if history was any indication, Knorren would devour him as quickly as any other man, king or not.
His fate was in the hands of Wurdiz now.
Come True: A Bomb-Ass Genie Romance by Brindi Quinn
We transport into a white study with marble floors and golden trim and windows backing up to a multi-colored garden of hedges, standing polite and tidy as soldiers. The man called Evaris is standing beside the door, equally tidy, equally soldier-like. And behind a grand dark-wood desk sits a man, Velis’s dad presumably.
But ohh lordy. Velis’s dad is a daddy.
I suppose I should have expected him to be, having housed the seed responsible for the specimens that are Velis and his older triplet brothers. His eyes are that signature pale blue, his hair the darkest cobalt peppered with flakes of gray and white. His bone structure must be what laid the pattern for all the blessed male children after him.
He wears a white business suit similar to those found in the human world on only the richest, swaggiest men.
Velis stands before him, fingers woven through my invisible ones.
“Hello, youngest son.”
Velis was right. His father won’t look at him; he merely scribbles with a quill as if it’s far more important than Velis. His demeanor is cold and distant, his chin stern.
No wonder Velis feels unloved by him. And yet, over the fireplace mantle is a great portrait like the one in the library. A carefully decorated depiction of Velis’s beautiful mother, shimmering golden hair tied back in an elegant knot and eyes that seem to jump at you from the frame. Eyes that are a shape unique to Velis. None of his brothers have the same.
How can a father love a mother so deeply but feel nothing for their son? I don’t believe it. The only thing strong enough to create a rift that vast is pain.
“Set your vessel on the table, Velis,” his father instructs.
Velis’s grip tightens around my invisible palm. “Why?”
“Set your vessel on the table, or Evaris will do it for you.”
Showing his teeth, Velis begrudgingly retrieves his shrunken vessel from his pocket and restores it to its full size.
Secrets of a Rose by Adina Chiles
Dawson lets me ride atop his horse, Lucy. I offer to share with Krispin, but he’s always been fickle around the creatures and feels safer on the ground. Sometimes I question if life in our army is the right fit for Krispin. Maybe the sea is better.
I let the two of them carry the conversation, afraid Dawson will interrogate me.”
“He tells Krispin of the carriage that will take us to the ball tomorrow. I wonder if it will be as grand as ones I’ve only seen from a distance. They go back and forth discussing attendees, people I’ve never heard of.
Dawson brings up the name Talia, but Krispin quickly sighs. Not only does Dawson want Krispin to join him in the army, but he aims to set up a marriage. Another thing I doubt Krispin is suitable for at his age.
Talia is a mystery girl from Luxuria, a distant relative of the king.
To Krispin’s relief, Dawson tells of her being unable to attend this year. Something about a fever and welts.
“Maybe you could write her,” Dawson suggests.
Krispin’s face pinches up. “And say what? Haven’t seen you in a year, hope your rash clears up?”
“How about your feelings, or perhaps intentions? You’re nearly eighteen, my boy.”
“You want me to send a blank letter? Because I feel nothing and can’t think of a single intention that involves her.”
My bottom lip tucks under my teeth to prevent from laughing. Even Dawson lets a chuckle slip.
“You know, father,” Krispin says, continuing his rant, “I already have a date for the ball. Two, in fact. It would be rude to focus my attention on another.”
Heart and Hero by Gianne Rabena
"How are you feeling?" Norman Abrera inquired, gazing at him through the thick glasses.
"Doubly beaten up after reading enough articles about me," Andre admitted in monotone. "Or should I say, 'Azul'?"
"Ah, yes. I saw that."
"Ah, Magenta couldn’t be more proud. Said she’ll take you costume fitting for a cloak on Saturday."
“Please tell me that’s—”
“I kid,” Norman chuckled. “Although, Force is a little disappointed his son wouldn’t get to debut as Force Boy.”
“There are a couple of reasons why ‘F-Boy’ is a bad title, Dad.”
A Kingdom of Flame and Fury by Whitney Dean
I heard a male voice from the distance, my lip curling as my father appeared through the trees. “You made it.”
I didn’t want to see him while here, but it was inevitable. “A week ago,” I replied, crossing my arms over my chest.
“A week ago?” He asked me, turning his head toward the sound of Jeanine reappearing on deck. “Why is Jeanine here?”
“Hello, John,” Jeanine said, declining the ramp to stand beside me.
“Jeanine,” he replied, but looked at me. Confusion clouded his eyes.
“I don’t know,” I said. “Mira wanted her here. She’s been telling the village of some sort of magic your queen possesses. I figured you knew.”
“You’re the one who’s been going around the village,” John said aloud, but it didn’t sound like he was talking to us. His voice seemed far away.
“When can I meet your queen? What’s her name?”
“Raven,” Jeanine and John replied in unison.
Raven. Her name sounded like an answer to a riddle. My stomach flipped when I heard it. A riddle that was buried deep somewhere in my mind.
“Tomorrow. We have a festival tonight,” John answered, looking back and forth between me and Jeanine.
I sensed bewilderment on him. He really didn’t know she’d be here. “Jeanine, can you grab my jacket for me?” I asked her, my eyes not leaving John’s face as she muttered something under her breath and left us. “What?”
“She wasn’t part of the plan,” he said, watching as she disappeared below deck.
“What plan? What is this all about?”
He didn’t answer. Time hadn’t been kind to him. He looked much older than he was. Maybe that was what happened when you abandoned your family and swore allegiance to a kingdom that wasn’t your own.
The Girl in the Clockwork Tower by Lou Wilham
“What’s so funny?” Sully asked, his brows raised in curiosity.
Benard seemed unable to get words past his chortling. His glowing eyes pinched shut, and he shook his head without another word.
“Maybe because Manu looks so short next to you,” Owen offered. His long strides brought him to the three other men. With a shake of his head at Benard, he turned his attention back to Manu and Sully.
Manu’s eyes narrowed on the two men as he frowned. “Don’t,” he said brusquely. “Just don’t.” Then he stalked off toward his quarters, leaving his two crewmen snickering in his wake. Inhaling sharply, he turned to check if Sully was following him.
“Those must have been your dads,” Sully said with a good-natured smile. “Are they always like that?”
“No. Sometimes they’re worse.” Manu snorted. “And yeah, I guess you could call them my dads.”