NewFSFBadge-1I want to get back into free writing and challenges, and Lillie McFerrin’s Five Sentence Fiction this week seemed to be a good way to do it. Lillie’s prompt this time was “SHADOWS” – you can follow the link to read some of the other takes on this inspiring word.

While walking home from work, the following scene just sort of popped into my head. Some of the characters and details come from an earlier idea I had a long time ago, so they may seem a bit familiar to some of my older readers. Still, it’s always nice when these prompts cause me to revisit a thought-to-be-discarded plot line.

“Even in the Dark”

Castle corridor - geograph.org.uk - 535482

Thomas Nugent [CC-BY-SA-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

He hadn’t come to be known as Sirrus the Grim for nothing: red-bearded mountain clans, dark-skinned islanders, blue-eyed snow walkers – all of them had felt his wrath for their disrespect, howling in the night over their precious poisoned firstborns.

By now, the princess’s royal guard would have found her, still and pale in her bed, for there could be no marriage between sea and cloud, not when his brothers in The Shroud were so close to keeping the king’s blood pure forever.

Prince Alraune might mourn, but he would come to understand: the sea princess was no better than a whore, a troublesome upstart who knew nothing of nobility, who’d already let her guard – her dull, plebeian guard! – take her maidenhead.

Sweeping around a corner, his cloak caught on a jagged edge of stone, and Sirrus tore it loose with a curse beneath his breath; these hidden corridors were unknown to all but Shroud, but he couldn’t waste a moment to return to the prince’s side, to keep his secrets intact-

A hand shot out from the umbra, grasping his neck, and the face of the wave rider princess’s guard filled his vision, snarling, “Even in the dark, Lord Sirrus, you cast a long shadow.”

There’s a lot of telling in this attempt, I know. Nonetheless, I rather enjoyed digging into Sirrus’s head, here.

I don’t know if I write villains well; my conflicts tend to be ones out of the characters’ control. I certainly don’t tend to look at stories from the villain’s perspective, though perhaps I should reconsider that, since his voice spoke to me with this one.

Did you poke your head into any SHADOWS, this week? Do you write villains? Have you ever written from the villain’s perspective? Why, or why not?

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