Gabron is an apprentice to the greatest Wizard in the world, Myrax. He has reached the end of the grandest battle he has ever participated in. Myrax gathered all his greatest allies, and the two led them on an epic crusade to prevent the end of the world. They fought valiantly, and at the last minute, failed.
That’s where this story begins. Not on some great quest to slay the beast, or free the princess. Beaten and broken. Abandoned and left to die with the rest of their world. Gabron must struggle just to survive. It will take all his wits and training if he is to survive the collapsing planet and his own servant’s murderous intent.
This Novella is a great read while you are waiting for your next big book to be released.
Targeted Age Group:: 16+
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
I've played DND and other RPGs forever and the party always ends up beating the big bad and saving the world, and a lot of the fiction I read is the same way. Heroes usually triumph over villains, or if they fail, they have some type of a redemptive arc or some such. And I got thinking, what about when the hero doesn't win? What about when they screw up in the worst way possible? What happens then?
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
I don't know. Sorry, this is a harder question to answer. I don't sit down and write out what the characters will be. I start writing the story and let the character's personalities develop themselves. (It doesn't always work.) I knew for Gabron, he was going to be optimistic, but bitter. He was going to be stubborn about the whole ordeal and keep chugging along, even though a sane person would consider giving up.
Fires burned on the fields of Andellan. Corpses picked clean by scavengers, great war machines broken across the open ground, shattered weapons and shields, all sat silent and still, save for the fluttering of torn banners. Gabron sat on a rocky outcrop and listened to the silence. For all he knew, this outcrop had been the arm of some wizard’s golem or the base stone of a rolling tower. The world had ended and these people had chosen to fight, kill, and die before it was all over.
A massive shadow swept across Gabron. He looked up. Kolacion, Capital City of a now dead empire, floated overhead and blotted out the sun. A long trail of debris accompanied the ruined city as it drifted by. The planet was coming apart. Chunks were already beginning to drift away as the planet’s gravity diminished. Plumes of fire and molten stone could be seen erupting way off on the horizon. If he jumped hard enough, he would probably float away too. He pulled his scratchy brown robe tighter around himself. The planet was cooling quickly as it broke apart. In a week or two, it would be a frozen, lifeless collection of rocks. By the end of the month, it would be scattered throughout space, a jumbled asteroid field where a planet had once thrived. Gabron sighed.
“Couldn’t have been born anywhere else,” he murmured to himself as he gazed out into the sky and daydreamed about other worlds. Not the two neighboring planets, twinkling blue-green and red beyond the debris, but other realities where other versions of himself didn’t have their homeworld torn apart.
His master, the wizard Myrax, had shown him once. He had opened millions of windows ino other versions of their world; Earth, Bet, Orion, Zetamir. It had thousands of different names, and each one represented a reality in which things had turned out differently from his.Some people claimed there were infinite realities, where every decision everyone ever made had a reality where they didn’t make it.
That theory was stupid. He couldn’t imagine the number of times someone with the appropriate power had decided to wipe out all existences. He had personally seen Master Myrax defeat three such beings. By that theory, there should have been realities created where he lost, but the universe was still here.
“Most of it,” he mused watching the city chunk tear itself apart and rain back down. There was a low rumble and Gabron jumped off his rock and walked away from it. Behind him, a thin line appeared in the ground running under the rock and off in opposite directions. There was a small rushing sound and dirt began pouring into the line. It rapidly widened, swallowing the outcrop and everything else in its path.
Gabron kept just ahead of the destruction and let out a piercing three note whistle. It echoed, then died in the loud rumbling behind him. Several moments passed before a spectral parrot in all the vibrant colors of the rainbow landed on his shoulder. He felt his soul jerk as it landed. He waited a moment to ensure it was intact.
“Did you feed enough?” he asked. It eyed him for a moment, silent.
“It’s never enough,” it replied. It’s voice sounded at three different levels. One was fairly high and sounded much like you expected a parrot to sound. The second was deep, bassy, and resonated with the power the creature held. The third was the echoing thought speech inside Gabron’s head. “I followed your orders and consumed all that I could without rising to the level of your own power.”
Gabron eyed the beast for a moment and considered it. Known as death-greeters, they took on all shapes and sizes. They fed upon people’s souls to survive and perform magic. That is soul with a little -s. It’s a person’s life energy. It is what binds their Soul with a big -S to their body and pumps life through their blood. Feeding on the little remnants of the deceased took no effort for the creature. Stealing Gabron’s would take a serious expenditure of the energy it had already been storing.
This particular death-greeter had been nothing more than a wisp when Gabron had bound it into his service. There was enough energy in Gabron’s body to easily triple its abilities if it could steal from him, and it would if allowed. This was one of the ways it could end its servitude to him. He had made it swear to absorb as much soul from the deceased, but never reach the point where it could steal from him without dying.
“Is it enough?” Gabron asked again. The death-greeter’s eyes shifted through the spectrum of the rainbow and a polished mirror appeared in the air in front of them. Their reflections in the mirror grew opaque and then the view cleared to show another world. Their images and the raining destruction were replaced with a vibrant green field dotted with wildflowers. The mirror’s surface thinned until it seemed it would open up and allow them to pass through.
“It is not enough,” the beast rumbled. Gabron felt a small tug at his soul again. He fought the urge to push back with his own magic. The tug was a natural part of the beast and any use of his magic might tip the scales and render him vulnerable.
“Swear it,” he commanded. It’s eyes narrowed at him.
“I swear it is beyond my power as it stands now,” all three of its voices responded. This satisfied Gabron. When he had first bound it, he had ensured that it was forced to acknowledge and bind itself using all three of its voices anytime he commanded. This way, it couldn’t promise with one voice and lie with the other two. Part of him suspected that it might have a fourth voice, but forcing the majority to swear, kept it in check.
“Burn half the power you just acquired. Something harmless and flashy, and no more feeding. That’s an order.” He infused his words with his will and felt a little bit of his own power flow into them. Small runes appeared across its body and it launched itself into the air.
Fiery streams of plasma erupted out from its body radiating out into the air. They arced across the sky and shattered falling debris into small orbs of blinding, brilliant light. Gabron had paused for the exchange and resumed walking in what was once an Eastern direction. Now, the travel took him more to the SouthWest. The plasma barrages continued for another ten minutes or so and then subsided. After the initial display, he had ignored the rest and walked in silence. The death-greeter landed on his shoulder not much later. It had decreased in size and lost most of its brilliance. Again he felt the tug of his soul. This time he brought his will, focused it, and lightly struck out at the creature. The small blast of his will had no physical manifestation and stung like stubbing your toe would. It still caught the death-greeter by surprise and it tumbled from his shoulder. It glared at him angrily as it spread its wings to catch itself. It winged its way around, flapping furiously and landed on his shoulder again.
This time it exerted itself to consciously reign in its natural abilities. It sat there sullenly. He could feel its resentment and he smirked at it, “You knew better.”
It turned away from him and refused to take the bait, staring out at the desolate landscape. Gabron continued on through the war-torn fields. He eventually picked his way down into a ravine. He knew he should be approaching a Way he had used several times before while in service to Myrax. The Ways were pathways that connected different parts of Andellan. It allowed one to walk across continents and oceans in just a few steps.
Rumors were that the ways used to require travel in a different realm before re-emerging into Andellan, but some powerful spell or powerful, eternal entity had made the Ways instantaneous travel. He had always thought that it might have been one of the Legendary Fae Lords or the lost elves as a way to prevent travel or invasion into their lands. He was sure that Myrax knew or had participated in whatever event had sealed the other side and formed the Ways as they were now. Myrax had lived long enough that many of his exploits had passed into legend before Gabron had ever been born. His reverie was interrupted by the death-greeter.
“Attack from above,” it practically whispered. He had to strain to pick up what was actually said. Comprehension came nearly a moment too late as a rumble sounded from above. He reached behind him and swept his hand up and forward. No words were spoken, just an extension of his will propelling the air in the ravine forward into a small gale that rose and slammed into the tumbling rocks slowing their descent. Gabron dropped to one knee and whispered, “ Vy ret end got.”
Both his hands shot out to either side and he felt a massive wave of power rush out of him. The blast of air and the extra couple of feet from dropping down bought him just enough time. He felt his barrier spring into existence. Seconds later, he watched sparks flare half an inch above his head as several hundred pounds of stone began impacting against the invisible shield. His legs buckled slightly as the weight of stone pressed down on him.
Links to Purchase eBooks – Click links for book samples and reviews
Buy At Planet’s End: A Novella On Amazon
Have you read this book? Tell us what you thought! All information was provided by the author and not edited by us. This is so you get to know the author better.