Nine Muses of Inspiration but the incredibly talented authors who wrote about them.Welcome to my A-musing the World Blog Event! In case you haven’t been here before, this event runs for the next few months and covers not only the
This week, strangely enough, I’m featuring none other than Melpomene, Muse of Tragedy. Why is that strange? Well, I wrote her romantic tale. Yes, even the Muse of Tragedy fell in love. I know, it’s not often spoken of but it did indeed happen. And with a mortal no less! When and where you ask? Well, though she’d fallen in love with him years before, her first real contact with Rowan Stewart happened the minute he died…13 May 1568, Battle at Langside, Scotland. I’ll bet you’re wondering what happened after that.
While I can’t tell you everything, Melpomene’s willing to share a little. After all, she’s the heroine in Highland Muse, the second story in The Song of the Muses Anthology. Melpomene specifically invited Thalia, Muse of Comedy over to interview her. Or should I say the interview is being conducted on Apollo's majestic cloud.
After the interview, you'll see I’ve taken a few never before read snippets from the first ¼ of Highland Muse. A little taste of how the two very independent characters, a Highland warrior and a Greek Goddess acted when thrown together…Wait! Before you read on, bet you’re curious if there’s a contest. Of course! What’s up for grabs? Two things. Two winners will be drawn. Each wins a prize. The first prize? A free Ecopy of Highland Muse. The second prize? A $15 gift certificate to Digi Books Café! I’m going to make you work for it a little bit this time. How? Not that hard really. Answer this question in a comment (hint…answers found within excerpts following interview) Okay, here goes. Stripped naked before her, Rowan wants Melpomene to prove to him she’s not what? (hint…it’s not very nice!)
Having said all that I think I’ll hand the blog over to Melpomene and Thalia (AKA- Michele Hart). The floor is yours ladies! Or should I say cloud?
THALIA: Welcome, all, to Apollo’s cloud.
Please welcome my sister Melpomene, the Muse of Tragedy. If ever you’ve been inspired by a loss to create, she was the muse who visited you.
THALIA: Tell me, sister muse, what drew you from the isles of Greece to the Highlands of Scotland to find your true love? And does Fate ever really give us a choice to how far we must go for love?
MELPOMENE: I certainly did find love hidden within a culture much unlike my own. But as muses, I suppose we all, one way or another, become influenced by the many diversified facets of the world. Rowan Stewart, a Highland warrior, caught my attention when very young. Always so brave, courageous…kind. Something inside of me was instantly drawn to him. As he came into full manhood, that feeling quickly took on a romantic nature. After that, there was no looking back.
THALIA: What of Rowan will you never forget?
MELPOMENE: Interestingly enough, his unbreakable devotion to his queen and cousin, Mary. It takes a man of great character to put other lives before his. As the Muse of Tragedy, such a trait does not go unnoticed.
THALIA: Love or time? Which lasts longer?
MELPOMENE: Without doubt, love. After all, does not love withstand the test of time?
THALIA: Share with us a secret the Muse of Tragedy surely knows. Is life sprinkled with tragedy by design of Fate to make us love, value, and experience the highs of life that much more fully?
MELPOMENE: Now that is one secret I cannot share. Fate would never forgive me!
THALIA: Will we see another tale of the Muse of Tragedy?
MELPOMENE: In every tragic tale yet to be told by mankind. By Sky Purington? One never knows.
THALIA: In your opinion, who is the most handsome of all the Greek male gods and why?
MELPOMENE: *sighs* Rowan’s standing right here. And despite his best attempts not to, he runs a little jealous when it comes to the male Gods. I’ll fill you in when we’re alone.
THALIA: You’re the Muse of Tragedy, and probably the busiest of all muses. Your songs inspire the broken-hearted, comfort the parent who’s lost a child, honor the brave fallen. It’s 2010. Have you thought of cutting a record?
MELPOMENE: I have actually! Currently in ongoing conference with Zeus about that one. He’s still a bit peeved with me about the whole falling in love with a mortal thing and giving up my powers for a human lifetime. But seriously, it’s four hundred years later. You’d think he’d be over it by now!
MELPOMENE: Nepotism? Not yet. I dare them to! In truth, I believe enough Gods meddled in my affair with Rowan. *Ouch!* Dad just hit me with a lightning bolt.
THALIA: You caught some pretty smooth blade moves on Cerberus, Hades’s three-headed fleabag from the Underworld. Who taught you all that bad-ass swordplay?
THALIA: Inquiring minds want to know. So how do you rate the mortals versus the gods? Are the gods better in the sack or just more fertile? Is there an appeal the mortals have that the gods will never gain, or the other way around?
MELPOMENE: I wouldn’t put it past them!
THALIA: Is Dionysus the bomb, or what? Would you agree he is the Spuds MacKenzie of the family?
MELPOMENE: Yes, we’ve had our ups and downs but I’d say Dionysus has more than proved himself. A definite keeper.
THALIA: Which goddess do you believe is most likely to allow Ares to spank her blind-folded in the woods if she thought they wouldn’t get caught? Excluding Aphrodite, she’s too obvious!
MELPOMENE: Why m’dear, I think you might have it in you to attempt such a naughty thing! *whispers* May I join you?
THALIA: Thank you, Melpomene, for spending the day with us on Apollo’s majestic cloud.
MELPOMENE: *gives Thalia a big hug* And thank you for taking the time to interview me, sister muse! Okay, here we go. On to bits and pieces of Melpomene and Rowan's unequaled start together...
***First blip. Rowan gets frisky…***
He struck quickly and she gasped. Gasped! Her, a muse, a goddess, gasp? Had any god ever incited such? No. But when Rowan stood and his eyes locked on her she was useless to grasp anything save his lips crashing down on hers. They were hard and urgent, soft, giving, and so much more. More than she’d anticipated; enough to decapitate reason and leave her basking beneath his ardor.
His hand came around her waist and pulled her tightly against him, left no breathing room. But what was breath when she had her Scotsman devouring her? His tongue swung into her mouth, sought and consumed. She met him thrust for thrust, swirling and feeling. Oh yes, so much feeling in one kiss, one mortal all-consuming kiss.
***A bit further in the story. Melpomene starts to feel human…***
He looked at her, his magnificent eyes cutting. “You tell me why I live. Why I can see you yet others cannot. Then I will tell you what I know.”
Damn his stubborn hide. She had no answer for him save speculation. “I cannot.”
He pulled up to his nearly six and half feet and looked down at her as though he was a god. “Then I cannot.”
Prideful son of Hades! But he must! Did he not realize his fate, life, well-being, everything, was in the hands of her Gods, not his? Fool! Christian God, her arse. The Greeks were what he should be concerned about!
“We’re at an impasse, Melpomene.” He had the nerve to hold out his arm to her. “Come; let’s go to my castle and rest. Start anew.”
Rest? She almost laughed. She could not rest, bathe, eat and sleep as a mortal did. Or could she? Was she somewhere caught between that she could do these things with him? Had she been given such without even knowing?
She had to find out, to give him her arm and let him lead her. For once be led and nurtured. Sung to? She looked up into his strong face. Nay, Rowan was not the singing type. Her gaze skirted lower and eyed the arousal he couldn’t seem to control when they were together. Nay, Rowan was not the singing type but he was a certain type.
And, whether he wanted to believe it or not, he was hers.
***A bit further in the story. Rowan starts to realize where they’re from doesn’t matter…***
"Shall we bathe together, my Laird?”
He almost tripped on a tree root. Bathe together? Bloody hell! Why not? He walked with an ache in his loin much to his discomfort and well she knew it, mischievous muse. He couldn’t deny the like he had for her stubborn streak nor her evident pride in the Greeks. Lord, now that was something. What was Greece when compared with Scotland? Really!
He bit his tongue. Was he not more in Greece’s throw right now than he was willing to admit? No doubt his own God frowned upon him. But how was he to have known?
“You did not answer my question.” Melpomene moved closer. Her breast grazed his forearm.
Saints, it was a well rounded breast. He sought breath and tried to focus on her question, on the light swish of her white gown dusting his booted ankle. That brought him back! “You’ve changed again, lass.”
“Aye.” She skirted a small stump but kept hold. “It seemed a wise choice.”
“Why would that be?”
A slight stain of red ran across Melpomene’s cheekbones. “You seemed unable to control yourself the last time I dressed in a plaid, so I figured for now…” She slid him a caddy appraisal at odds with her blush. “It would be wisest if I didn’t tempt you so.”
***Further on. Even a goddess realizes when things are getting out of control…***
She did well to keep her eyes on his face when the plaid hit the floor. “Yes, that is the way we remember it, Rowan, but not the way the world will. Of that I’m quite certain.”
She darted out of the tub when he swung one leg then another into it. Skittish, her? Had the circumstances been appropriate she would’ve laughed. There he stood, naked…and there she stood the same. Yet naught was said about it. She must keep her gaze on his face. What he said next shocked even her.
“Look at me, Melpomene. Look at the whole of me and prove you’re not the devil incarnate. That you’ve the womanly instincts you showed so readily in the forest. You stand now as a beast in my mind, one that says and does wicked, makes a mockery of the crown, of my bloodline.” He stayed standing, did not sink down into the water. “Look at me, Melpomene!”
Never a coward, she did.
Her knees buckled and she rested her bare bottom on the side of the tub.
Sky here! Hope you enjoyed reading about Muse Melpomene and her one true love. Oh, wait, almost forgot…years later, reviews are still rolling in about Highland Muse. Here’s the latest, Sept 2010…
“Highland Muse is not the first Sky Purington book that I have read. With each one I'm reminded why I continue to pick-up her books. Each book is a memorable treat to savor and a historical romance that endures time. Ms. Purington has a way of mixing fantasy with reality and coming up with a really great story. I look forward to enjoying more of her books and I encourage readers to pick-up one of these heartfelt romances.”
~TOP PICK rating. Countrygirl88. Night Owl Reviews
To what a mournful pitch its keys were strung,
And when thou badest its tones of sorrow flow,
Each weeping Muse, enamoured, o'er thee hung:
How sweet--how heavenly sweet, when faintly rose
The song of grief, and at its dying close
The soul seemed melting in the trembling breast;
The eye in dews of pity flowed away,
And every heart, by sorrow's load opprest,
To infant softness sunk, as breathed thy mournful lay.
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