Black Moon Draw (Chapter Six, page 1 of 4)

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If she is a witch, she is not a very good one. The Shadow Knight caught his newfound prize with one arm as she sagged. He secured the axe at his back and took her arm again, watching in satisfaction as the wound healed. Skin grew over the stump of her wrist and, within two breaths, a new hand began to grow. She healed quickly - a sign of good fortune and great power.

Of course, the battle-witch who was supposed to be learning this lesson was not conscious to see it.

Were all witches newly come from the edge of the world like this? Hysterical, rambling about nonexistent places, and talking to people he was not able to see? Was this her magic or madness?

The Shadow Knight had never met a new witch. His were looted from neighboring kingdoms, and all of them had been stately, calm, and commanding the respect of his men the way he did. In fact, he quarreled with many of the battle-hardened women when he was a young knight about the best way to win a battle.

They were always right. It was a lesson he reluctantly accepted after two key defeats.

But this one . . . She was unlike the others. He doubted he would be taking advice from her anytime soon. Maybe this was the way of the battle-witches; they had to be trained, similar to how a frightened boy one day grew into a brave knight.

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