master & slave
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What can you give a slave who, by law, can own nothing?
"He could not leave this room without his father's permission. And he could not imagine going to his father and saying, 'Please let me go gather moss so that my slave can have a proper New Year for once.'"
- Part 3 of The Three Lands
"Lying on my stomach in the passage, I held my breath. Knowing the man who spoke, I had no doubts as to what he was suggesting."
When an endangered slave visits an imprisoned spy, she discovers that she has more options in life than she had thought.
Life is not easy for Serva, the bastard daughter of the King of Daxis. Alternately treated as a slave and as a princess, she is distrusted on all sides . . . especially by her old rival from the nursery, her cousin the Prince.
When the Prince begins to hint that she is a threat to his ambitions, Serva must make a decision that will determine the course of her life. And that decision will determine the fate of a spy who is due to be hanged. . . .
- Part 5 of The Three Lands
"They always held their breaths when the soldiers passed by, but so far, no battles had been held anywhere near Doughoregan Manor or any of its quarters. And sometimes a posse set out with the hounds, to hunt down the quarry."
Civil war is tearing apart the land. Again.
For centuries, the Kingdom Vovim to the northwest and the Queendom of Yclau to the southeast have fought each other for the border territory of Mip. Sometimes the Vovimians are lords of the land. Sometimes the people of Yclau are.
The only Mippites whose lives don't change are the slaves. Young Sling knows that his own life's work has already been determined: he is to be a house slave, serving his master's son. But secret meetings in hidden places with his master's son make Sling uncertain of what will happen next.
When news arrives of a proclamation that will allow Sling to leave his hated master, Sling faces a difficult choice: whether to flee to safety or to stay and face the dangers of an unknown future.
"Emancipation" is loosely inspired by events at a border-state manor during and after the American Civil War. This is a Juneteenth holiday story for my readers.