I’m busy editing, so here is a snippet for you from Hidden Promise (unedited)! The release is set for June 2023!
*Spoilers for Hidden Memory and Hidden Sanctuary*
On and on into the night, they flew at a pace no horse could ever match, and Larron wondered just how large this land was and how they managed to keep it hidden for so many lifetimes. Finally, he made out pricks of light filtering through the canopy ahead. His assumption of habitation was confirmed when he felt them drop slowly toward the trees. Their descent remained easy until they reached the forest. The prince told Larron to hold on but said nothing else before he pulled up and then dove straight down through the branches.
The ride twisted and turned, as jerky as any he ever experienced flying with Annalla. Larron struggled to cling to his bearer as the force worked to pull them apart. Behind him, he heard a brief, deep-voiced shout of surprise along with Patrice’s screams of fear. The one carrying her would bear claw marks for certain after this; the cat-like irimote was not at all fond of flying.
Once below the clustered branches, where the foliage opened, there was a final jerk as the prince righted himself and slowed to fly between the thick trunks. Sturdy trees surrounded them, and Larron saw an increasing number of structures positioned among the thick branches. There was no obvious way to ascend to the buildings dangling precariously high above the ground. Thin wood planks made the basis of their visible construction, with a gauzy material stretched over the windows. Bindings lashed them to the trunks and branches, but there was no invasive external support holding them in the trees. Assuming they were as sound as he suspected, Larron felt an elvish respect for a people who treated their land with such care. To use it without destroying it took an effort many races overlooked.
They weaved in and out of buildings growing in number and size. Most remained dark within, the people here either gone home or asleep for the night. The prince pulled them up once more in front of a large treehouse and set down upon the open porch circling it. The rest of their party followed close at his heels, and Patrice jumped down from her fairy and dropped to the floor. She clung to the boards even as she murmured repeated apologies.
“Patrice,” Annalla knelt at her side, putting an arm around her as she spoke, “she speaks little of the market tongue, but tells me her skins protected her well enough. She is fine, and you will not have to fly again too soon.”
The irimote rubbed her face before looking gravely at Annalla. “I really do not like flying.”