Here's the thing--most of the time, the words in the song mean nothing. NOTHING. It's the music in the background, maybe a little bit of inspiration from the words. So if you're listening to the song and you're like...WOW, Wendy. Something's wrong with your brain...just know, yes. Yes there is. And also, some things just inspire me in certain ways with no explanation.
That being said, here's our first example. In Spark of a Feudling, there's a scene where Ada finds out her fiance has a little side chippy. The scene is one that I'd come up with YEARS before I wrote Spark, but one day as I'm driving along and the song came on and I'm thinking about this scene, I was like holy crap. That can fit so perfectly RIGHT HERE. So I ran home, and I wrote it.
SONG: Words by Heart by Billy Ray Cyrus. Listen HERE
BOOK: Spark of a Feudling
WATCH FOR: toward the end of the scene, she tames the giant horse and races out of the pasture, jumping the fence right in front of William. That part coincides with the near end of the song where there's lots of build up. See if you can tell where it is!
The first door was locked, and there was no light coming from under the door. She moved on to the next, which opened, but was dark beyond. She frowned, moving on. She came next to two doors — one was the trophy room full of dead, stuffed animals.
There was light there, of course, because Lord Charnock would hope someone would venture this way and see it, despite the guards standing at the stairs. She peeked in, but there was no one there and she backed out quickly. Turning to the door across the hall, she bit her lip. The door was shut and it was difficult to open holding a glass in each hand. She almost moved on, but caught just the smallest flicker of light. Backing up, she maneuvered the handle and pushed the door open.
A lone candle lit the room. A man and a woman stood locked in an embrace and it took several seconds before Ada realized who, exactly, the man and woman were. She gasped. The goblets slipped from her numb fingers and crashed to the floor, shattering into hundreds of shards at her feet. As if from a distance she felt the wine soaking her slippers.
William’s head jerked up and he jumped away from Harriet, his maid of all people. “Ada! Ada, I can explain—”
Ada turned and ran.
She picked up her skirts and raced back down the hall. William called her name, but she didn’t slow. She reached the stairs and hurtled down them, shoving people out of her way as she went. Tears threatened at the back of her eyelids, tears of humiliation and pain, but she refused to let them fall.
She rounded the landing, toward the huge window overlooking the pasture as lightning lit up the field. A movement beyond caught her eye. She gritted her teeth and lengthened her stride.
“Stop her! Ada, wait!” William called. He was at the top of the stairs now, but three more steps and she’d be out of his view.
Bystanders gaped in shock, but no one moved fast enough to apprehend her.
She hit the main floor and sprinted for the wide front doors.
She shoved them open and didn’t take the time to shut them as she raced down the marble steps, her wet slippered feet skidding and sliding. Taking the stairs two at a time, she made it to the circular drive and ran across it, straight for the pasture.
Behind her, she could hear them still. William wasn’t alone now — more men called her name, joining in the search. But she was an Edren sorceress. Faster than all of them combined, probably, even in her wet slippers and heavy skirts.
She skidded to a stop at the fence. Only then did she feel the rain soaking her hair, her dress, hiding her tears. Lightning split the sky and thunder crashed and somewhere from beyond the realm of rational thought, she mused that such a storm was fitting.
She flung herself over the fence.
Maiden stood motionless in the middle of the field, watching Ada come. All the other animals hid in the barn, terrified of the storm, but not this horse. In her silent stance, she mocked the storm and all its fury. Ada held out her hand, finally slowing to a walk as she neared close enough that the big horse could hear her. Murmuring sounds that had no meaning, she begged with her heart.
I need your help.
Behind her, light spilled from the front doors as men emerged with lanterns held high. “She must have come this way! Search the barn!” she heard Bertram yell.
She glanced over her shoulder. William stood in the circular drive, his eyes wild and desperate as he turned round and round looking for her. But no one would think to look in the pasture with the beast they were all afraid of.
Maiden tossed her head once, pawing at the ground and snorting. “I will not let them hurt you. I will protect you, I promise,” Ada whispered. Charity would laugh at that — she was forever teasing Ada about her need to protect everyone.
Maiden lowered her head.
Without another thought, Ada launched herself onto the giant horse’s back. If not for her magic, it would have been impossible, and she sent a silent, grateful prayer heavenward that she had been born a sorceress. Winding her fists in Maiden’s mane, she leaned low as the big horse leaped forward. Her hooves beat upon the ground, rivaling the thunder that shook the sky. Ada knew the instant the men heard the ground cracking under Maiden’s feet. As one, they all turned toward the pasture, staring in shock as the giant horse bore down on them.
Most of them scrambled back, but William did not move, eyes wide.
The fence loomed before them, and if Ada had had time, she would have been frightened, but there was no time. She saw the fence, and then they were leaping over it easily, as if it were mere sticks laid across the ground. Her feet landed hard on the other side, within arms’ reach of William, and then the big horse whirled on her back feet and raced down the dirt path.
Ada glanced over her shoulder. William sprang to action, yelling at someone to bring him a horse. But they would never catch her. His father had said Maiden was the fastest horse in the country, and they all knew that.
“Take me home, Maiden.”