Welcome to this week’s installment of Saturday Spankings and Sunday Snippets! We’re continuing our journey with Talia in my soon-to-be-released retelling of “Our Lady’s Child,” a Grimm fairy tale. Taliasman will be published within a few weeks (release date not yet set), and it starts with a simple premise. What if a girl had been raised to regret she had not been born a boy? For context, you’ll want to read parts one and two linked below.
I should refuse her degrading order, but her manicured red nails work their way through my hair.
“Good girl,” she says, and against all reason, I am pleased. I rest my forehead against her thigh, and a soft exclamation causes me to tilt my head backward. At the last second, I open my eyes. Laugh lines crinkle around her dark brown eyes filled with compassion and—can it be?—love. “If you…but you don’t,” she corrects herself. “Will you behave, or must I send you to your room?”
Born to a destitute woodworker who wanted a son to carry on the family business, Talia grew up with one phrase on her lips: “If I had been born a boy.” If she had been born a boy, she would have been cherished, supported, and launched into the world with her father’s legacy. As only a worthless girl, she toils all day long to earn her handful of inferior grain.
Far away in the heavenly palace, Queen Vina receives a mysterious coin necklace from Nicodemus, teller of stories. Compelled by the throbbing heartbeat, she scours the earth to come across Talia, enslaved to a family who never wanted her. Rather than admit her motives, Vina purchases the girl with a sackful of gold. Furious, betrayed, and homesick, Talia endeavors to share her misery with the entire palace. Vina, afraid to confess her love, allows herself to become trapped in the role of brutal slave owner.
Talia, bred to expect nothing but misery, faces the first choice of her life. Will she accept love, even if it comes from an unlikely source? Or will she reject the one who offers her everything?