This is number twenty-four in a series of posts where I document the complete process of writing a novella - Day By Day!
I am documenting (via my blog) the complete start to finish experience of writing a novella that I will be releasing for FREE once it is written.
I will be writing approximately 900 words per day and I will post each day's writing the following morning, unedited, on my blog. This means you get to see my draft with all its original spelling mistakes, bad grammar, and clumsy sentences
The timeline for the experiment is as follows:
- Plotting, Characters and Scene Outlines - April 1to April 20 - COMPLETE
- First Draft Manuscript - April 21 to May 18 - IN PROGRESS
- First Manuscript Edits - July 1to July 5
- Reader Proofs - July 6 to July 25
- Final Manuscript Edits - July 26to July 31
Today's Date: May 12th
Progress: Day 21 complete. Following is the day's writing...
Sixty-two copper coins. Ryann counted the marks once more and sat back down on her bed. Three silver coins. It was very slow progress. Still, maybe today she would find out just how much money Kieran had left her. She picked up her new hair-brush from beside the bed and ran it through her hair. Hopefully now everyone would stop saying she looked untidy all the time.
Ryann put the brush down and got up. She crossed her room and headed along the corridor toward Bramwel’s room. It had been five days since they had burned Kieran’s body and during that time she had tried to keep out of Bramwel’s way as much as possible.
She knocked on his door and entered. He was stood staring out of the window. Without a word, Ryann crossed over to Bramwel’s bed and started to tidy it.
“Showing your face at last then?” he asked, not turning to face her.
“Yes master,” she replied, biting down on her lip to stop herself from saying anything she would regret.
“Well don’t forget, today you need to take my clothes to wash as well.”
Ryann finished tidying the bed and started to pick up the assortment of discarded clothes that were scattered around the room.
“Nothing to say this morning then?” Bramwel asked, finally turning to face her.
Ryann shook her head and continued to make a pile of the clothes. She tried not to make eye contact with Bramwel who was smiling at her as she worked.
“Nothing at all?” Bramwel took a few steps toward Ryann. “That is most unlike you. Usually you are giving me unsolicited advice.” He laughed.
Ryann stopped and looked at Bramwel. She waited for him to stop laughing before she spoke. “Well actually there is one thing, master.” She raised her eyes up toward him. “There’s the matter of the oath money, sir.”
Bramwel laughed. “Oath money? What oath money?”
“From Kieran, sir. He promised it to me as he was dying. You were there.”
Bramwel took a step closer to Ryann and lowered his voice. “You are getting none of that money, girl. I have used it for myself. No one heard him except for me and I can’t seem to remember it at all.” He poked a finger into her face. “Do I make myself clear?”
“But it’s mine…”
Bramwel slapped Ryann across the face. “Do I make myself clear?”
“Yes sir,” Ryann replied, trying not to allow herself a tear.
Bramwel took a step back and turned to cross toward his bed. “Good, then that is settled. Now hurry up and take these clothes to be washed. I don’t want to have to punish you further today.”
Ryann picked up the pile of clothes and hurried off to the wash-house. As soon as she had dropped them off, she turned and walked back toward the large sitting room. Today she had extra duties now that Kieran was no longer there.
Ryann collected the broom from near to the sitting room and entered by the main door. She immediately set about sweeping the dust from the floor back toward the door.
“Ryann,” said Lord Cala, looking up from his chair on the far side of the room. “How are you today?”
Ryann curtsied. “Very well, sir.” She continued to sweep away the dust.
“Come over here,” Lord Cala continued. He beckoned with his fingers.
Ryann laid the broom against the wall and walked across the room. “Yes sir?”
“Take a seat.” He pointed toward the empty large chair that was next to his.
Ryann looked at it twice. “Sir?” She had never dared to sit in such a comfortable chair as this before. Sclavas never sat in these chairs. Lord Cala tapped the chair and waited for her to sit.
“How does my son treat you?”
“Well, sir,” Ryann replied. She dare not tell him otherwise, even though she was regularly beaten.
“And your face? Is that the result of running then?”
Ryann blushed and touched a hand to her red face. “Probably sir.”
Lord Cala smiled. “It’s alright, Ryann. I know it was most likely Bram that did that to you. I will have words with him. He forgets his manners sometimes.” Ryann watched as Lord Cala took a sip from a large cup he was holding. “You remind me a lot of my wife you know. Just when the light catches you sometimes. It could be the way you wear your hair.” He turned his head slightly at an angle. “I see you have brushed it today.”
Ryann touched a hand to it. “Yes, sir.”
“I had quite gotten used to it being messy.” Lord Cala laughed. “I actually thought it suited you that way.”
“Yes sir,” Ryann said, starting to feel a little embarrassed.
Lord Cala got to his feet. “I know you are probably wondering just exactly what you are doing here, and hoping to be excused as quickly as possible. But don’t worry. I’m not upset with you. Not at all. In fact I want to make sure you are treated fairly. By Bramwel. I want you to tell me if he does anything else that is upsetting to you.” He smiled. “Especially if he beats you again. Will you tell me, Ryann?”
What was she supposed to say? Should she tell him about the oath money? Would the Lord get Kieran’s money for her? “Yes sir,” she replied. He probably wouldn’t even believe her. He was probably just trying to make her feel better because of Kieran. No she couldn’t say anything, she decided. “I will, I promise.”
“Good.” He extended a hand to Ryann and pulled her to her feet. “Now run along and see if there’s any food prepared for me will you? I’m getting hungry already.”