EXCERPT: Iron Flower by Billy Wong
by Billy Wong
Years are only one way to age in this tale of a young warrior whose army-slaying sword belies her kind heart.
One of the greatest fighters in the world, nearly indestructible Rose lets few things strike fear into her—but magic is one of them. Nonetheless, she seeks out the magical dangers left by the ancients alongside warrior partner Finn and curious scholar Derrick in order to protect others from them. Their mission is complicated by Rose and Finn’s budding romance, as her choice of lifestyle conflicts with his expectations for the woman he loves. But after their quest pits against such titanic foes as a prince able to slay a thousand men in a day and a draconic archmage, will Rose be forced to embrace the very magic she fears?
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“Are you two… together? I see how much you like being with each other.”
They weren’t “together,” in the sense Derrick meant, but Finn wondered if he might be well on his way to falling for her. He loved being around her, but never thought
of it in a romantic sense. He had always regarded her the way he would a favorite male drinking buddy—fun and exciting to be around, and always ready to cheer him up if he was feeling down. However, he had felt less pleasure at being with other women, ever since they’d met and become better and better friends.
As for the question, Finn took the easy way out. Getting louder with each word, he proclaimed, “Rose is the best friend and greatest warrior I’ve ever met. I’d fight an archmage of the Old World for her, hell, she would fight one again for me! I’d have her watching my back over any army you could find! She is the shield which protects me, the wall which shelters me, and I am her sword, that strikes down any who would threaten her!”
He had risen from his seat, and felt somehow uplifted by his overblown tirade. As he sat back down, he said in a dramatic tone, “So in answer to your question, yes. Of course we’re together.” Laughter surrounded him then, but Derrick did not laugh. He looked closely at Finn, as if trying to find a hint of his true feelings.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Billy Wong is an avid fan of heroic fantasy, with a special love for strong female warriors. He draws inspiration from the epic legends of old, and is on a quest to bring over the top deeds and larger than life heroes back to prominence in today’s literary world.
Billy lives in Coney Island, Brooklyn and as one can see from the picture, works as a ninja.