The Lark and the Wren Author:Mercedes Lackey Music was what Rune lived for, and, self-taught though she was, any with an ear to hear it could tell that she had the Gift. But, born out of wedlock and forced to slave as a tavern drudge from the time she was old enough to hold a broom, Rune knew her chances of ever achieving her dream of becoming a Bard were slim indeed. Perhaps that was... more » what drove her to take the dare--to play her fiddle at midnight for the legendary Skull Hill Ghost. Despite the Ghost's reputation, despite the many corpses that had been found on the hill with looks of terror frozen on their faces, despite the fact that even the priest sent to exorcise the Ghost had died, Rune would not go back on her word.
And so she had come to the hill in the dark of night, and she had made her bargain with the Ghost. If she could play till dawn and hold the Ghost's interest with her music, she would live. If not, she would pay with her life.
But even if she survived this fearsome private concern, Rune's troubles would just be beginning. For in a world controlled by Guilds and the Church--a male-dominated world in which no woman had ever been permitted to become even a Guild Bard's apprentice--what chance was there for a young woman with no lineage and no powerful bakers to plead her case?« less