We’re continuing sneak peeks of Becoming Clissine, the first book in my Bastia series that will be released on September 20th. Clissa has grown up in a world where heterosexual relationships are forbidden, and she now faces criminal charges for consorting with a boy. Altrea, the head of the Bastil (the governing body of Bastia), has Clissa listen to the charges against her before calling the assembly to prayer. Altrea reminds the gathering of the laws and regulations of their society, but Clissa remembers the principal law.
Clissa resolutely kept her eyes open while everyone else murmured entreaties with closed eyes and bent heads. She wondered what her Dis and Nur were praying and whether their public shame was too much for them to bear. Did they want her sent away to serve a sentence, out of reach of judgment and ridicule?
“Clissa, daughter of Lystel,” Altrea commanded, “you are young, and this is your first offense. If you confess your sins to us, your punishment will be light. If you obstruct justice, you will be taught a terrible lesson about what it means to violate the Commandments of Basti.”
Love, that was the principal Commandment Clissa had recited every year of religious instruction–or did love only apply to people who had not broken the law? Wasn’t the first principle of Bastian law that Basti loved all?