Justi the Gifted, an epic fantasy by R.R. Brooks, has just been published by LeoPublishing L.L.C.
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A gift from a god can be good. But what if it is damaged?
The Cats of Justi. Two significant cats managed to find their way into my YA epic fantasy novel Justi the Gifted. They were not planned in advance, but just appeared. The first was Daresse, a feral cat engaged by dark spirits to keep an eye on Justi’s mother Arturi:
Arturi saw the black creature emerge from the trees …. It seemed to be waiting…. She closed to within ten paced and examined the animal. It returned her gaze with narrow yellow eyes tinged with red, opened its mouth, and issued a long, low sound, something between a meow and a growl.
Later, Daresse tries to kill Justi. Thus this animal character serves to illustrate the power and threat of the dark forces against my protagonist.
A second cat, Sparkle, serves a different purpose. He is Mercerio’s pet, a descendent of the cat adopted by the princess as a child. Sparkle serves as Mercerio’s “listener.” He says nothing, of course, but she interprets his gaze, his arching back, stretching, indifference, and departure as conversational gambits. The cat also confirms that the ghost of her father is a real vision and not imagined:
Sparkle approached and crouched at her feet with a twitching tail and raised fur. He stared intently at the spot where the ghost had been and made small hissing sounds.
“There’s nothing there now.” Mercerio ran her hand along Sparkle’s arched back, certain the cat’s actions meant her vision had been read. Sparkle had sensed something.
For his service, Mercerio picks up Sparkle and thinks about what her father’s ghost has revealed. She remembers a startling bit of information—she has her own power– and drops the cat.
A few other cats serve as scenery, but Daresse and Sparkle contribute to the plot. As does a dog, but that is the topic of a separate blog.
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