A generation designed by sorcery to destroy your people. Two races mired in conflict with each other. Can a pair of outcasts unite them against an enemy who would enslave them all?
The birth of ‘bronzite’ babies in Lumina heralds the onset of war. The people take fright at the golden children and banish them from the land. A dangerous move. King Zheldar, commander of the black dragon, is attacking Luman borders. If he wins bronzite support for his army of monsters, Lumina is lost.
Davron Berates cannot share his people’s hatred of the children and, on discovering he has a bronzite brother, sets out to find him. At his side travels Chrystala. A bronzite, she has twice his strength and three times his determination.
When the black dragon kidnaps Chrystala, Davron is faced with a terrible choice: save his friend or save his nation.
Targeted Age Group:: 16-60
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
I've always wanted to write a fantasy, but I think the need to be perfect stopped me. It was only when I was older that I had the confidence to go ahead. All my life, I had enjoyed escaping into a book and so I wanted this novel to provide adventure and escape for my reader.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
I wanted there to be some feisty women in the book and so two of the protagonists are female, although the story pivots around Davron, who is searching for his brother. Their characters are not based on people I know but develop through the choices they make when faced with challenges.
A.L. 3025 – City of Lumon
1. A TAVERN BRAWL
Even the best of cities hides a dark soul when the sun slides behind the curtain of night. A lonely fog swayed damply over the river as Davron Berates stood on Sharrack Bridge chatting with two singers from the Lumina choir. The sound of revellers echoed above the lapping of the water and Davron looked over the embankment to watch. A solitary female weaved her way through the crowd of men. He frowned but turned aside at a tap on his shoulder.
“Davron, pay attention. We’ve an idea about the finale.”
“I – Hold on a moment. What’s going on down there? “
“A load of drunks, coming out of Shark’s Inn.”
A man’s laugh rang out, harsh in the cold of the evening, then a female voice, “Leave me alone.”
“They’re bothering that girl.” Davron continued to watch, wondering if he should intervene.
“Bronzite, isn’t she? Dare say she asked for it.”
None of his business then. Davron turned away.
“Get off me.”
The girl’s protest distracted him. Davron jiggled about, half an ear on his friends’ chatter, and half on the scene below.
“Grab her, lads.”
The sound of a scuffle carried over the water. Davron wanted to ignore it but found he couldn’t.
“She’s in trouble. I think we should help.”
His friend sniggered. “Nothing to do with us, Davron. Come on. We’ve got work to attend to. The bronzite can look after herself.”
“There’s too many of them. I don’t think she can. You go on. I’ll just check she’s all right.”
He didn’t bother to wait for a reply. He leapt down the steps and strode towards the men. The muscles in his stomach were tense: anxiety not fear, or so he told himself. He had to admit he wasn’t much of a fighter; even from here he could see the girl had more muscles. The only thing going for him was the blue braid on his tunic. It would take a brave man to risk the wrath of the Founding Families should he get hurt. Or a drunken one.
With all the authority he could muster, he yelled, “Leave her alone.”
A few heads turned his way but no one moved.
“Leave her, I said!”
Two of the men actually shuffled aside. Davron gulped. Before him stood a colossus of leather and bulging flesh, a drunken warehouseman, the girl squashed against his body, his fingers pressing craters into the flesh of her arm. Davron’s gaze inched upwards: a brow slick with sweat, a face flattened at birth by a giant hand; splattered at its center a squashed nose, its open pores flamed with red veins.
With a snort, the warehouseman shoved the girl to the ground and poked Davron in the chest. “Keep the fuck out of our business.”
Davron slapped his hand away. “This girl is under my protection. Let her go.” Even to his own ears, his voice sounded thin.
“Your protection?” The man laughed and smacked lips wet with beer. “A scrap of blue braid don’t scare me, boy. Founding Family, my arse. You,” he swayed and jabbed his finger towards Davron’s eyes, “don’t tell me what to do.”
Davron stepped forward, placing himself between the girl and the drunk. “Bronzite, move aside.”
The girl promptly leapt up and stood next to him. He should have known better: young and outnumbered yes, but she was a bronzite, able to defend herself, her strength a given from birth.
The men shunted forward as a pack. The warehouseman grabbed Davron and slammed him against the inn wall, crunching his scalp against the stone. He smashed one fist into Davron’s stomach and pounded his face with the other. Davron grunted, reeling from the blows. Blood dripped into his eye, blurring his vision and he shook his head – then wished he hadn’t. A right and left to his chin finished him off. The world spun and he slid down the wall.
The girl was still fighting: a chop to the jaw, a kick to the knee, and two of the men fell to the ground. He must do his bit. He staggered to his feet and launched himself into the fray. His erstwhile attacker grabbed for the girl but she dragged him towards her and pulled him off balance. Head down, Davron charged and crashed into him as he fell. The two of them tumbled over and landed hard, Davron on top. He pummeled the fat body, a dozen blows with his fist – they barely dented the heavy clothing.
His opponent jerked his head up, and Davron jolted backwards, narrowly avoiding a crack to the skull. He punched wildly: chin, lips, nose. There was a satisfying snap. The warehouseman roared, tightened his arms around Davron’s waist, and squeezed. Pain cracked across Davron’s ribs. Then the man was on top, stinking of onions and stale beer, and swearing revenge. A boot crunched into Davron’s side and he curled into a ball, all fight abandoned. Through watering eyes he saw the man stagger to his feet, then bend and fumble with his clothes. The huge body wobbled, a mountain of flesh about to topple. Davron crawled out the way.
In the distance, a whistle blew and someone shouted, “Let’s get out of here!” Relief washed through him. He crouched onto his knees, and took a moment to catch his breath. Holding his aching side, he struggled to get up.
“Break my bloody nose, will yer?”
Davron looked over his shoulder. He caught the glint of a knife and tried to clamber out of reach. A punch of pain in the back of his leg. The muscles in his calf caved in and blood spurted over the paving stones.
A voice yelled, “Come on,” and boots thudded by.
His hands pressed jagged edges of skin together, his fingers trembling in their effort to stem the flow.
A rip of material and she was kneeling beside him, staunching the wound, the turquoise flare of her skirt bright in the gathering darkness.
“Y..you’re all right?” His words were faint.
“Hush now. They’ve gone.”
Golden hair framed almond eyes. Flame glinted deep within the myriad facets of her pupils, and danced like fireflies of light in the night air. She was beautiful but she was a bronzite. There was no future in it, not for him and certainly not for her. Still, he needed to know. “Your name?” he said.
“Chrystala.” He tried to hold onto the memory as he passed out.
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