Before the ambush

This blog is really starting to be useful. Thanks to Geoff for reading the first section and coming up with some great editorial comments! Thanks to Safder for the encouragement too. Scene two from chapter one will be posted on Thursday. In the meantime, here is a short extract from chapter two.

Jaguar watched his friend examine his sword, checking each of the blades in turn to make sure they were tight. He felt queasy and decided to check his own weapon in the hope that it would calm his nerves. He slung a bag from his shoulder and took out the shield and his own sword. Jaguar’s was the traditional style, with none of the garish embellishments that most warriors favoured. Some carved the wooden hafts and tied colourful feathers to the head, but Jaguar’s father had shown him that clean lines and unfussy design allowed a warrior to check the weapon for faults more easily. He turned it over in his hands a few times, feeling the balance. It was a beautiful piece of work by Achcauhtli, the clan’s armourer. Six razor-sharp shards of polished obsidian gleamed even in the gloom of the ravine. The cutting stones were mounted in two rows of three, set on opposite sides to give a clean slicing action and to allow the weapon to be carried safely.

Jaguar cursed himself, irritated because of the fear that crawled over his skin.

Suddenly, Archer Eagle pulled back from the rift opening. He made a flattening motion with his hand and the warriors shrank back further into their hiding places. The enemy was close.