Thursday, May 24, 2012

Historical Fiction Winner: THE OTHER CHOSEN ONE

Name: Marilyn Pontuck

Genre: Historical Fiction

Query: The Pharaoh Akhenaton introduced the concept of a single universal God and fundamentally changed the religion of Egypt. He failed.

First 250 words:

You know, of course, that you cannot keep the infant.

That was not well said, thought Amonhotep. It’s difficult enough for Tiy and there is no reason to make it more so.

He was out of sorts when he said that although that did not excuse him. Aside from a brief visit to Tiy at the start of her ordeal, he had been waiting outside the birthing pavilion and listening to her anguish for hours. When not pacing, he sat, his hands forming fists with each cry that came to him on the evening air.

The sky wore reds and purples as Ra prepared to depart the sky and make his way into the body of Nut. But this day has been much more trying for Tiy than for me. She had already been laboring when Ra appeared in the sky.

The birthing pavilion was located on a far corner of the royal palace grounds of Malkata, separated by dense vegetation and many sacred trees. The four wooden pillars that supported its roof were carved into flowers and painted in yellow for long life and green for fertility. The design of the matted roof showed representations of the gods who protected childbirth -- Hathor, Bes, and Taweret -- rendered in various grasses against a palm leaf background.

The birthing stones at the center of the pavilion had been oiled and scented with exotic musk and essential wood oils in preparation for the birth of a royal child.

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