Here it is, the big reveal of my next book 😀
The bond of love can conquer all, but only if it is accepted.
Prophecy states that three champions imbued with the best virtues of the mortal race: heart, strength and soul, will be the ones to save them all from an enemy which threatens to steal the life from their world and those who live upon it.
These three, along with their scribe, his bond mate, and an overly sarcastic oracle, must set off on a journey which will take them through forest, city, swamp and mountain. On this quest they will activate the magical stones which charge the only weapon powerful enough to defeat Tildar and his cult of Dwell.
Yet the closer they draw to journey’s end, the more it seems that it is not the evil which will be their downfall, but the fear of a champion unwilling to accept the bond of their destiny.
The cottage was as cosy on the inside as it looked on the outside: yellow washed walls, white vases brimming with pink blossoms and a square table covered in a lace cloth. Kai pursed his lips, thinking that the decoration didn’t really suit the tense woman, who now stood to one side with her arms folded and a pensive frown lining her brow.
“This is nice,” Otto remarked with slow words, glancing around the room before turning to Cosmas with wide eyes and a raised brow. His bond mate shrugged at his reaction.
“I don’t want to guess why you’re here,” Milana said and ran her fingers through her shoulder length, straight blonde hair. Then her attentions turned on Kai, who shifted under her heavy gaze, as though she could see right through him. His skin burned red and he plopped down onto the chair beside the table. “But I am thinking that with his presence, your visit isn’t purely social.”
“Always so perceptive, Milana,” Sindrin said with a grin, sitting down on the wide window seat and propping his feet onto the top of the table.
“Always such good manners, Sindrin,” she replied, shoving his feet off so as they thumped to the ground.
Kai frowned at the familiar and somewhat jovial interaction. Did they know each other too? He had never been allowed access to the records about the prophecy, Kai had assumed the council kept this from him so as he wouldn’t make judgements about those who would be aiding in the quest. But he had heard tales, and so far, the real heart and strength were nothing as he had envisioned.
Glancing around, it was then he noticed Riff was not with them.
“It is time,” the council servant said, bringing Kai back to the conversation.
“Not for me,” Milana replied, crossing her arms once again.
“You cannot refuse your destiny,” the man shouted, slamming his fist down onto the table, a vase wobbling precariously at the force. Kai flinched, it was the first time he’d seen any council servant express emotion, especially with such a strong reaction.
Milana was unmoved by the display. “I don’t care for destiny.”
“It is not just your fate that is decided in these times. It is the livelihood of all of us, including your friends,” the red-robed man said, spreading his arms out to gesture to the people gathered behind him. Once again, it seemed that this group was more familiar with each other than Kai had thought. He bit his lip to stop the questions spouting from his lips.
“I would really prefer to live,” Sindrin added with a shrug.
“You have hidden from the world and this prophecy for too long,” the council servant said. “The council have allowed it-”
“Allowed it?” Milana straightened herself and Kai swallowed hard at the sudden tense atmosphere that had developed, like the brewing clouds of an oncoming storm. He shrunk down in his chair beneath the weight of it.
“You are a part of this world, Milana,” Otto interrupted, gripping the shoulder of the councilman and yanking him back, trying to diffuse the tension. “And the world is dying.”
“I know.” Milana softened as she spoke to Otto, turning her gaze away and frowning.
“You cannot blame the council for what happened back then.”
“We all suffered, Milana,” Cosmas said, leaning across the table she’d taken a seat at to get closer.
“I know!” Milana repeated, closing her eyes as though it were too painful to keep them open. Kai’s heart grew heavy at the emptiness that creased the woman’s brow, and again he pressed his lips together to avoid asking what it was that had happened.
“You are one of the prophecy.” The council servant interrupted the silent, sullen moment, Milana bristling at his voice. “It is your duty to give this world back its life and peace, your duty to the Ancients and their council.”
The hollowness was gone, replaced by anger that curled her lip. “You can say nothing to convince me, servant.” She sneered at him, advancing with stiff shoulders towards the man. Kai’s brow rose, surprised to see the servant retreat a step, though he couldn’t blame the man; she may have been shorter than him, but she was as threatening as an angered wolf. Her fists were balled up with barely contained rage. “You cannot sell your false promises of a world of peace to someone who has seen the price of it!”
“You must go,” the council servant protested, but his voice quavered and he stumbled back into a chair as she loomed over him. Kai gripped his satchel and tightened his lips, fearing to let any noise escape him.
“I will not,” she said through gritted teeth. No one refused the council, no one dared, but glancing between the quivering servant and the small but intimidating woman leaning over him, it seemed she would. This woman was far from the embodiment of heart she was supposed to be and Kai was relieved she didn’t want to travel with them, his palms sweating at the thought.
The door suddenly creaked open and Riff stepped inside, ducking beneath the frame and bringing with him a much-needed gust of cool air, which blew away the hostility in the room.
It was in that moment that Kai watched in confusion as Milana’s angered expression drained, replaced by something else, an expression Kai couldn’t quite recognise. Her lips parted, her breath slowed and her once narrowed eyes, widened and glistened. For the first time since entering the house, the threat pulsing from her dissolved.
“Riff…” She breathed his name, which seemed to struggle to make it from her mouth.
There was a silence that invaded the room, so thick it threatened to choke Kai and he gasped in short pants at the air as he remained silent.
“Hello, Milana,” Riff replied, to which she blinked a few times, as though the man before her were not real.
“Guess we know what she was hiding from,” Sindrin muttered from behind his hand, receiving a swift kick to the shin from Otto. “Ow!”
Milana and Riff continued to stare at each other, apparently forgetting that anyone else was in the room.
There we have it, my next book! 😀 I’m so excited.
Prophecy of Stones is a fantasy romance and a tale of love, adventure and discovery!
It will be released on July 31st.
I made the cover myself, the runes on the front I also created and drew, and are specific to the story inside.
What do you guys think? Does it sound like something you’ve be interested in reading? Did you enjoy the excerpt?