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Book Two of the Heirs of a Broken Land series
The Wall of Loss separating the lands of light and darkness has been breached…
After leaving her home in pursuit of marauding Eloms, Avarielle Grayloft found allies in a grieving princess and a sorceress with a hidden agenda. As dark powers poisoned the land, the three fought their enemies and each other, until faced with a foe they could not defeat.
Betrayed and wounded, Avarielle is held captive in the fiery depths of a dangerous and deadly prison. Seeking vengeance, she escapes only to find herself trapped in the savage Land of Darkness. And, as she discovers the truth behind the Eloms, she is forced to question everything she believes in.
With her homeland on the verge of destruction, her powerful sword about to fall into the clutches of evil and the Eloms growing in strength and number, Avarielle must take the greatest gamble of all, forging an alliance with the leader of the Land of Darkness and betraying all she has ever known.
Warrior of Darkness: Excerpt
It took the better part of an hour to reach the turbulent waters, even though they had seemed very close to the pier. Avarielle was just getting used to the movements of the boat and rowing when Kryde told her to hang on.
“To what?” She asked before the boat fell into its first rapids. It pulled them down fast, Kryde using his oar to push them away from rocks. Following the instructions she had been given earlier, Avarielle did the same, using the oar more like a sword. Still, they managed to make it through the first set well enough. Jayden was still secured tightly.
She couldn’t see the shore anymore, only the rocky mountain jutting up near them, with a few trees clinging to the rock face. The air was sizzling with the crack of magic already.
“Are we near the Wall?”
“Next rapids – look up!” Kryde screamed over the sound of the rushing water.
Avarielle had been concentrating so hard on the water that she drew in her breath as she looked up, amazed she had missed this sight. Although she had lived near the Wall her entire life, she had never seen it from so close. It stood up near them, grazing the rocks below and reaching upwards without pause and no apparent end. She could see from here that the Wall was thicker than it seemed, and the shimmers refracted and danced with the light. It seemed more opaque than transparent, a strange purple hue unlike any other Avarielle had ever seen.
She swore she could hear it sing, not peacefully, but rather like a swarm of angry bees. The sound made her heart accelerate, as though she should expect battle or something big at any given moment.
“It’s beautiful,” she whispered, and she meant it. It was strange too, and frightening, but it was amazing.
“The worst rapids are just beside the Wall. Be careful of rocks, and everything else!” Kryde took up his oar as though preparing for battle. Avarielle did the same after checking that Jayden was well-secured.
“Hang in there, Jayden, we’re almost through,” she whispered in his ear. She thought she heard him grunt.
She turned to face the water just as they hit the first rapid, dragging forward at such speed that Avarielle leaned back and almost toppled over. Kryde pushed them off a rock, and they were covered with salty spray. Avarielle was soaked, which made her movements more difficult, the wet sleeves of her coat and the cool air turning her limbs to ice. Still she clung to the oar and fought off the rocks and tried to keep them as straight as possible in the choppy waters.
“We’re almost through!” Kryde called and Avarielle could see they were just beside the Wall. The air crackled and sizzled, and Jayden began to cough. Avarielle hoped that was a good sign.
Then a large purple tentacle leapt out of the water, grazing Avarielle as she threw herself down. It came back up quickly, Kryde barely avoiding a rock as another tentacle flew up and struck the boat, jostling them as the wood splintered.
“We have to move!” Kryde screamed. The boat lurched sideways.
Avarielle held her breath, waiting for the enemy to strike. The boat stopped flowing down the rapids. Kryde looked towards her and then down at the water in horror. Avarielle looked as well, the water purple just below the surface, where a giant creature held them fast.
The world stood still for a moment and then the boat flew up, clearing the waters, sending Kryde overboard and making Avarielle lose her balance. She frantically grasped for a hand hold, anything, to keep her onboard, seeing Jayden’s eyes slightly open as he lay secured under the ropes.
But Avarielle found nothing to hold onto and she struck the water hard, immediately sucked down by the waves and pulled back towards Elihor, spotting a glimmer of the giant purple monster in the distance.
Her body was so heavy, and she didn’t know which way was up or down anymore. She was being thrown around like a rag doll when she struck the sandy bottom. She kicked hard against it, pushing herself up with all of her strength, in an attempt to reach the surface. But the current was relentless, and she was dragged back under and thrown against a rock, knocking what breath she still had out of her.
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