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Varju thought he was the son of a blacksmith in a small Hungarian village and his father had named him Varju after the common crow. He also thought he would remain in the village until his dream of becoming a soldier in King Matthais Corvinus’ Black Army withered as he finally grew too old to serve…until a lone rider with dented armor and a lame horse changed all that.
Buda, Summer of 1450
Matthais Corvinus, King of Hungary, stormed out of his council room and almost collided with one of his best warriors, Sir Alric Dahl, a Norseman who’d joined the Black Army as a mercenary and made Hungary his home. Rather than make his apologies he stormed, “I am heartily sick of politics, Alric, and most especially when the subject is my marriage to a woman I disliked upon first glimpse of her miniature. The marriage will take place this December, so I don’t imagine I will be in a very festive mood for Christmas. Mayhap you know of some entertainment I can lose myself in this evening?”
“Well, Your Majesty, there is a Rom kumpania that’s just arrived in Buda and has made camp a short ride away. This one is known for its good horseflesh, and I’m in need of a new mount. We could take in the music and dancing, and, maybe, you can have your palm read to see what your impending marriage will be like.”
“Pah, I already know what my marriage will be like. It will have all the warmth of an ice storm. Whoever said Neapolitan women were warm-blooded creatures never met my betrothed, Beatrice of Naples. But after burying two wives already, I would marry a gorgon if it gave me an heir. To my way of thinking, Beatrice’s worst feature is not her plain looks but the fact I’ve heard she does not value learning for learning’s sake. I doubt such a wife will give me a son that matches me in intelligence.”
Alric slapped him on the back and attempted to lighten his mood.
“Come, come Matthais. Enough dourness. If you aren’t interested in music, dancing or prognostication this evening, the Rom also have enticing women and strong drink.”
C. L. Hadyn aka Cyn Hadyn, a career historian with Hungarian/Viking nomadic roots, loads up the gypsy wagon for the last time (hopefully) and heads to Greensboro, North Carolina, to follow her delusion of becoming a New York Times best-selling author. Yeah, sounds silly but it’s true. I’m a transplanted Yankee living way south of the Mason-Dixon Line despite its lack of decent Italian food. Uh, concerning the Italian food, I’d still sacrifice a small digit for authentic Italian cuisine a la Philly, Trenton, or New York.
Before settling down to write full time in the land of ‘bless your heart, and y’all’, I was a Special Operations (US Army and US Marines) military historian/archivist. Now I collect retirement checks and write paranormal, and historical romance. I guess my service with Army and Marine Special Operations left an indelible impression on my writing, because my characters, both male and female, are distinctly Spec Ops in their outlook. They leave no man behind, color outside the lines, and are very, very lethal. I’ve also pushed the envelope a little by including Erotica and BDSM and M/M romance. Which brings me to my latest books: The Cuckoo; Golden Hours Book 1: Fall Back, and Book 2: Spring Ahead; Book1 of the Trident Maritime Investigation series: Aurelia, and Book 2: Auric; Off Track; Bloodstock; The Danegeld, and Guarded Hearts, published by Decadent Publishing under the pseudonym C. L. Hadyn.
If you have a taste for History with a Twist, paranormal, or something more outré’, I would love to hear from you via gmail.com at clhadyn.writes2.
Check out other books by CL – Amazon