Missie, an American flutist, is thrust through a portal into a medieval world where her music is the key to empowering The Treasures of Carmelidrium to defeat the evil tyrant, Renwyk, Lord of the Symberveen. Immediately, her life is in danger. The Symberveen hunt her, an assassin attempts to kill her, Renwyk's men plot to kidnap her. While Prince Healden tries to protect her. Will she survive to fulfill the prophecy regarding her arrival or will Renwyk take over Gil-Lael and then America too?
Content Warning: Violence, Abuse, Mind-Control
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There is a unicorn in this book, but it is not a children's book or young adult. There are monsters that I invented called Symberveen that are terrifying. A wonderful hero and horrifying villain. Give it a shot, you'll love it.
N. R. Williams
Missie’s song swept high, the staccato notes like a summer breeze through aspen leaves, the flute’s clarity as clear as a meadow lark. In her mind, she heard a wind chime, and the flute tinkled the notes in response. Now she dropped the rhythm, and counted, one, two, and three…hold.
The final crescendo left her breathless and emotionally drained. With hours of practice, she knew every beat, every pitch and felt the pace within her heart. Her new flute’s precision justified its price.
Missie lowered the instrument and gazed at Professor Cloche in the first row. Her classmates, who’d already performed, were scattered throughout the University of Colorado’s music auditorium, listening to her recital.
“Bravo, bravo.” Cloche stood. “The rest of you should learn from Mademoiselle Kersten’s example. She gives her full attention to her music and as a result has achieved in three years what has taken some of you five or better.”
Her face hot, Missie lowered her gaze to avoid the glares of her classmates. She pulled the flute apart and nestled it in the case while the professor lectured her classmates. She hated being held up as an example. It didn’t win her any friends. Neither did Cloche convince her that her abilities were awesome. After fourteen years of study, since age six, she hadn’t improved much in the last year.
Missie glanced at the wall clock: 2:47 p.m. She jumped off the stage, headed for her backpack in the first-row seats, and deposited the flute case.
Cloche adjusted his reading glasses and continued. “Midterm grades will be available online a week from Monday after spring break. Class dismissed.”
Missie’s senior year classmates gathered their belongings and noisily left the auditorium. Rama Muhammad stood at the back and waited. Missie gave her a nod.
“One moment, Mademoiselle,” Cloche said.
Missie waited for him as he adjusted his gray sweater.
“Thank you, Professor, but my name is Missie.”
“That is your nickname. Why do you continue to use it when your true name is extraordinary? I believe you will find more respect as Michelle in your profession. Soon you will seek a position in an orchestra. Missie doesn’t suit your talent.”
Her father had always called her Missie, but Professor Cloche didn’t have children. How could he understand the bond between father and daughter?
“I’ve been sending out inquiries already,” she said.
“Michelle, I think you are ready now.”
“I’m sorry, what do you mean Professor? There are two months left before graduation.”
“Oui, oui, of course. I did not mean that. You are a professional musician. Some in this class will never achieve that status even though they will have a degree. My only regret is that you didn’t take my advice and study French. I would have loved communicating with you in my own language. And I believe the knowledge of other languages would be a benefit for your future career.”
“I didn’t have time.”
“Ah, Mademoiselle, French is a beautiful language, and it is true, what they say about love and the Frenchman.”
“Love is a distraction.” Irritation gnawed at her. What was with Cloche today? He’d always displayed an interest in her personal life, like an uncle, but he’d never been overbearing.
Instead, she said in a gentler tone, “Love will come in time, but for now I must concentrate on my goals.”
“What are your goals?”
“I want to travel to Europe and perform with the major orchestras there. I’d also love to be involved in creating musical scores for theater and movies.” She lifted her backpack and slung it over one shoulder.
He took her arm, halting her departure once again. “Michelle, you give yourself so little credit. Your music will change the world.”
Cloche’s hand on her arm felt warm, and with his touch, she heard the song of distant birds in the back of her mind. She sensed the world slowing down. The smell of redwoods came to her as if she stood in a faraway forest. She could almost see it. Frightened by this sudden vision, she pulled her arm out of his grasp and stepped back. The moment faded.
“I’d better leave,” she turned. “I’m going home for spring break. Mother has me scheduled to play at the country club tomorrow. She’ll be upset if I’m late.”
She joined Rama and together they left the auditorium.
Rama grinned. “Great job.”
“Cloche thinks so.”
“But you don’t.” Rama tucked her arm through Missie’s. “You never think its good enough.”
“I can do better.” Missie frowned.
Rama glanced at her. “Why do you always say that about yourself?”
“Because something is missing. I can feel it. I just can’t…explain it.” Missie pulled her arm from Rama’s.
“What did Cloche want?” Rama kept pace with Missie’s longer strides.
“He wants me to take French.”
“Again? He bugged you about that last year.”
“And the year before. I don’t know. He seemed different this time. And something weird happened when he touched me.”
Rama smiled. “Weird? What?”
They entered the student union and grabbed a table. Missie sat back while Rama bought two plastic water bottles. When Rama joined her, Missie fished two dollars from her pocket and gave it to her.
“You’d better tell,” Rama said.
“When he touched me, I thought for a moment that I was in the middle of a redwood forest. I could hear birds and smell the cedar.”
Rama inched closer and lowered her voice. “If I didn’t know you better, I’d think‒.”
“Drugs,” Missie finished. She leaned in and studied Rama’s dark eyes. “It went away as soon as his touch did. Do you think something’s wrong with me?”
“I think you have a great imagination.” Rama sat back and took a long drink from the water.
Missie frowned. It was more than imagination, but what?
“You still going home?” Rama asked.
“You should come with me and Steven. He’s got a friend who’s interested in you.”
“No thanks.” Missie lifted the water bottle but didn’t drink. “That reminds me. Cloche thinks I should find love.”
Rama choked on the water she just gulped. “What? Did he come on to you?”
“No, no it’s not like that. He’s more like a father or uncle or something.”
“I’m glad he doesn’t treat me like that. You’ve always been his favorite.”
“You deserve as much or more attention than I do. The opus you’re working on is fabulous.”
“Don’t forget your rather significant accompaniment, Missie. I play the piano. I can’t imagine being able to blow a steady stream of brilliance into the aperture of a flute. It doesn’t even touch your lips.”
“I can’t play the piano to save my life, so I guess we’re even.”
Missie noticed Steven the minute he entered the building. He had a friend with him, and she wondered if that was the guy Rama had mentioned.
She stood. “I’d better go. See you later.” She hurried toward the far door and left.
* * *
Several hours later, Missie straightened her text books on the shelf. She finished filling the backpack with a change of clothes, her cell phone, her flute case, and finally the folder that held her most recent musical scores. Removing the flashlight from the side pocket, she changed the batteries and then returned it to the backpack.
The flashlight had accompanied her everywhere after a power failure had plunged her into complete darkness her first year at the university. She had been in a private music room at the time and couldn’t see the door to get out. There was nothing like an old childhood fear of dark and enclosed places to bring about a panic attack.
She pulled on her CU Buffalo sweatshirt, grabbed the backpack, and left her one-bedroom apartment. Her parents lived in Westminster, a suburb of Denver and a short drive from the Boulder campus. She threw the backpack on the passenger seat of her red Jeep Wrangler and drove away.
Earlier, the March day had been mild, but typical to Colorado, the day had now cooled, and dark clouds threatened a spring snowstorm. She hadn’t gone a block before a drizzle forced her to flip on the windshield wipers. As she approached the Boulder Turnpike, traffic slowed. She tapped her finger against the steering wheel. The sound of sirens warned her of the approaching police car, followed by a fire truck, and then an ambulance, all of them headed for the interstate.
She veered away and onto the highway between Boulder and Golden. As the shadows lengthened and night slipped over the landscape, she turned onto the old road that bypassed the Boulder Turnpike.
Strangely, it was deserted.
Large snowflakes landed on her windshield. Belatedly Missie switched on the radio to hear the weather report. The station played a commercial jingle, and she punched the radio buttons in search of something else with no success.
“Whatever,” she said to no one.
The road traveled the natural terrain downward and wound around the hills. Thick, wet flakes obscured her vision. Missie set the windshield wipers on high, but the snow fell like big white cotton balls from a giant’s sack. She slowed the Wrangler as she rounded the corner and considered pulling off until the storm passed.
Then, the headlights illuminated a man in the middle of the road. She caught her breath and slammed on the brakes. The tires skidded across the wet pavement toward the man.
“Oh my God, move!” Missie clutched the steering wheel so tightly her fingers hurt.
He didn’t. A closed-in sensation overwhelmed her. The hood of his jacket concealed his face. The snow fell, the wipers whooshed, and kept rhythm with her pulse. She watched as if in slow motion. The man pointed a staff directly at her. Fear pounded against her ribs along with her heart.
He held a globe above his head which lifted from his palm and began to spin. A strong vibration emanated from the ball. Within its center a light flashed, and a beacon grew to fill the sphere with a glow as bright as the sun.
While the globe rotated, the strange man thrust his staff to the side. The steering wheel spun in Missie’s hands and the Jeep followed the direction of his staff. Then, the sphere flew over his shoulder, lighting a path across the wet ground, and parted the black night like a curtain pulled aside in the morning.
Missie’s Wrangler left the road for the embankment. She tried to yank the wheel back, but it wouldn’t budge. Stars formed an archway over the snow-covered ground and opened like a door. Thick snow met a stream of sunlight that radiated through the arch from the other side and evaporated the snow. Her Jeep hurtled through the passage, leaving behind the snowy Colorado night for a sunlit meadow at the bottom of a steep hill.
The radio blared static and went dead. Bile filled her mouth. The engine roared. The red Jeep sped down the grassy knoll and violently jolted her against the side window. She lost her grip and clutched the wheel in panic. A loud pop from behind rattled the windows, but she couldn’t divert her attention for even a moment to peer back. The Wrangler went airborne for a split second before landing in a creek. The resulting wave nearly submerged the Jeep before it slammed onto dry land and careened toward a large campsite.
“Oh, God!” Tears slid along her cheeks.
Two men stood on the other side of a long table directly in front of her. No! She couldn’t hit them. She yanked the wheel sideways. A huge tree blocked her path and…
Prince Healden Calimar pulled on his brown doe skin jacket and left his oversized pavilion. The early morning sun rose in the east of Gil-Lael, bathing the grass and spreading the shadow of the eastern hills across the meadow. Dew saturated the ground and moistened his boots as he walked. The rich scent of earth mingled with the redwood forest filled his lungs.
Fifty of the king’s best soldiers had accompanied him on this mapmaking trip, as well as a small entourage of friends and acquaintances. Friend-Brother Ragnol Wayte approached and handed Healden a mug of hot tea. “Highness.”
“Thank you. It does a man good to be away from court life.”
“And all the ladies aspiring for your attention.”
“Indeed.” Healden took a sip of his drink. Here in the woods, he could relax and enjoy the camaraderie of friends. There were no ladies to contend with, no jealousy, no one clamoring for his attention.
He spotted Newlyn, mapmaker to the king, across the meadow and started toward him with Ragnol in tow. As they passed between pavilions, Conal Meldan, Duke of Cwentun, raised a rod and struck his servant. The resounding whack caused Healden to stop.
“Of all the fools, I have ever had in my service, you are an oaf unequaled in negligence.” Meldan raised his rod for another strike.
“Come Meldan,” Healden said. “What has the boy done to displease you so?”
“Look at my cape.” Meldan thrust the material at Healden.
Healden gazed at the burgundy silk. “Why?”
Meldan’s face contorted into a frown. He pointed. “Here.” A small stain darkened the hem of the garment.
“I warned you against bringing your fine clothes.”
“I will not be forced to wear rags.”
Meldan’s face became so red that Healden thought steam might come off it. He suppressed his smile. It would only serve to make the duke angrier. “We have nothing available to clean the silk here in Northwode, your Grace, beating your servant will hardly change that.”
“A man of nobility must keep the commoners in submission.”
“Not all agree with you, Meldan. The people of Gil-Lael deserve respect and fair treatment. The king has worked tirelessly to ensure that old attitudes change, and I will do the same.” Healden turned his gaze on the boy. His tunic was muddy and torn along the hem and a welt had formed on his cheek where the rod had hit him. “What is your name?”
“If you beat Tyesis again, he will no longer serve you. I will find work for the boy. Now if you will excuse me, I have business.” Healden left. Ragnol stayed behind with Meldan. To what end he didn’t know and didn’t care. He came to a stop just behind the mapmaker.
Newlyn bent over his work, spreading the needle legs of the compass on the map that lay on the long table. As he worked, he referred to a small slate with measurements recorded in chalk. He dipped the quill into an ink bottle and added the twisting line of a stream to the parchment. The giant redwoods that surrounded the meadow on three sides were indicated on the parchment by an outline bearing the name Northwode.
Fascinated, Healden examined Newyln’s work. It had been over a hundred years since northern Gil-Lael had been mapped. There were several small villages and a port city along the northern sea, but few lived in the heart of Northwode Forest. This was known as symberveen territory.
Because of this creature, the king had insisted on an armed escort. Healden thought fifty soldiers too many. They would only serve to slow the party down. But he held his tongue. Some arguments were unproductive.
“I see you have made progress,” Healden said, when Newlyn stood up straight.
“Oui, Highness, I have added the stream. By day’s end this meadow will be complete, and we can resume our journey north.”
“I shall apprise the king of your diligent work, Newlyn. You make a fine addition to the royal staff.”
“I am pleased you find my work acceptable, Highness.”
A loud thunderclap shattered the stillness. Healden instinctively ducked and gazed aloft but could not detect any storm in the clouds above. Instead, blackness split the sky above the sunlit eastern hills. A pair of glowing orbs emerged from the gloom to reveal a monster unlike any he had ever imagined. Fear etched along his spine, making his fingers temporarily numb. His mug slipped from his grasp as he watched the box-like red creature hit the earth and careen down the hill. Dirt flew up and concealed its paws, the yellow eyes never blinked even when clumps of earth hit them. With a great popping noise, the split sealed and the sun erased all trace of night.
Shouts broke his trance. Several horses reared nearby. The red creature advanced, roaring like a crazed symberveen down the steep embankment toward camp. It lunged into the stream and exited with equal violence.
Healden knew not who shouted. There was no time to turn. He shoved Newlyn aside, grabbed the parchments, and dived out of the way. At the last moment, the beast turned and slammed head first into a giant redwood with a loud bang. The tree groaned. Its leaves thrashed from the impact. Steam hissed from the monster’s nostrils, engulfed its face, and rose along the tree truck.
Healden stood, drew his sword, and crept closer, uncertain whether the creature still lived. What sort of monster could this be? He knew of none that would make steam other than the legendary dragon.
He stopped near the beast and blinked in disbelief. There were windows around its top. This was no living creature but some strange contraption, pulled by neither horse nor ox.
Within, someone pushed a white pillow away from his face. The door creaked as it opened, and the person fell out. Healden frowned. Not a man as expected, but a woman.
History told of strange occurrences, of men who came from other realms through a passage between their worlds. Indeed, many brought marvelous inventions with them. However, Healden had never expected to witness such an event himself.
The golden-haired lady stood and leaned against the wagon. She wore trousers instead of a dress and a dark blue top with an odd beast embroidered in gold.
“The legends are true,” Friend-Brother Ragnol said.
Astonished, Healden didn’t answer. His initial fear evaporated. Glancing at his friend, Healden saw the men gathering, and Conal Meldan with Doctor Anwyl nearby.
“Beware,” Meldan said, “she has the evil eye. It will ensnare your soul if you gaze directly into it.”
The evil eye and its powers had been a staple of fairy tales for centuries.
“I didn’t take you for a superstitious man, your Grace. Why do you say that?” Healden studied the strange woman who leaned against the wagon, her hand against her forehead, she stared back.
“Her eyes are blue. See how the soldiers shield their eyes. You would be wise to do the same, Highness.”
“Nonsense.” Still, Healden wondered. Legend told of such people with hair pale as wheat ready for harvest and eyes the blue of the southern sea. They were a murderous clan who had invaded Gil-Lael more than a thousand years earlier. Despite her resemblance to the killing tribes of legend, he felt inexplicably drawn to this woman. She lowered her hand, revealing an injury. He started toward her.
Ragnol clutched his arm. “Hold, Highness.”
Healden looked down at his childhood friend’s hand. “Your concern is noted.”
Ragnol released him.
“Highness, you must not approach,” Conal Meldan said. “The wench may have a weapon.”
“Dressed in such a manner? How could she conceal anything?”
Doctor Anwyl drew near. “I will attend her.”
“Hold,” Ragnol said once more.
Healden didn’t correct him; he needed time to decide what to do.
* * *
Woozy, Missie leaned against the Jeep. The bruise on her forehead formed a swollen knot. She took a deep breath and kept her eyes open. Afraid she’d pass out if she shut them. As her vision cleared, she began to make out her surroundings.
There had to be fifty men gawking at her as if she’d fallen out of the sky. They appeared to be members of a Renaissance club, dressed in medieval clothes: tunics and trousers with wide belts and swords. Four of them wore finer clothes with polished boots that hugged their knees.
They argued in a foreign language. French, maybe? She thought of Professor Cloche and his encouragement to learn the language.
What just happened?
On wobbly legs, Missie hobbled around the open driver’s side door, and occasionally grabbed the vehicle to keep her balance. When she reached the front end and examined the crushed hood, a sinking sensation swept over her. She dropped to her knees in the grass. Her emotions squeezed against her normally calm demeanor.
Radiator fluid spilled pink on the ground. The toxic sweet smell permeated the steam that rose around her. Coughing, Missie pulled herself up and fumbled toward the door. She shook her head to clear her thoughts and wiped away the tears that threatened to fall. Stay strong. Stay focused. The men had moved closer, swords drawn.
Maybe they’re making a movie. The swords were probably rubber or plastic. Squinting against the bright sun she searched the meadow but didn’t see any cameras.
She fumbled in her backpack for the cell phone. Her attention returned to the men. Why doesn’t anyone help me?
Once again, she scanned her surroundings for any sign of modern equipment. Instead, she saw a campground filled with huge canvas tents. The scalloped tops were painted with stripes and decorated with tassels, and a blue flag flew nearby depicting a falcon in flight beneath a half circle of stars.
Maybe it’s a Renaissance themed wedding? She half expected to see a caterer approach with a tray of food. Or maybe I’m in the middle of a bizarre dream.
A horse whinnied and Missie could see several of the animals confined in a makeshift rope corral. A few horses were closer, their reins in the hands of men in green and brown uniforms…soldiers?
“I’ll make a call and get help.” She held up the cell phone so the men could see it. She pressed the emergency call button without checking for a signal.
* * *
“A weapon!” Conal Meldan shouted. The woman jumped.
“Wait.” Healden raised his arms. “Do nothing without my direct command.” He sheathed his sword.
Intrigued, he watched as she manipulated the box, held it to her ear, only to frown and repeat the process. Then she bit her lower lip, clearly confused.
“She is mad,” Ragnol said.
Healden raised his eyebrows. “I do not think so.”
* * *
Missie frowned and checked the signal. Nothing. She couldn’t think clearly. Work it out. But logic had evaporated along with the radiator fluid from her Jeep Wrangler.
One of these men must speak English. Missie pocketed her cell phone. A few of the men had bows and sheaths of arrows over their shoulders. Nearly all of them shielded their eyes with their hands and stared at her through the cracks. Weird!
She studied the four men in finer clothes. One short man’s black attire made him appear pale and sickly. Beside him stood an older man with graying temples. Another wore a burgundy cape slung over one shoulder. Their leather jackets were laced rather than buttoned. The fourth man was tall, his brown trousers tucked into leather boots. He alone didn’t brandish a weapon or shield his eyes. The golden hilt of his sword jutted out of the sheath at his right hip. He stepped away from the others and approached her. The older man came with him.
“Look,” she said, as they drew near. “I don’t know what’s going on here, but I need to get help.”
Both men exchanged a look and the older man stepped closer, he reached for her. Missie backed away.
From across the meadow came a series of short horn blasts. The tall man drew his sword and turned.
A magnificent white horse galloped from the sheltering trees on the opposite side of the meadow. His white mane flew behind as he ran. He lowered his head and charged. The men scattered and the horse dashed around them, throwing up clumps of dirt with his hooves. His muscles rippled. He snorted loudly, lowered his head again, and came dangerously close to the tall man beside Missie. At the last possible moment, the horse pulled up and stood a short distance away.
As his mane settled along his neck, Missie saw that it wasn’t a horse, but a…unicorn. Now I know I’m dreaming.
Several soldiers set arrows to their bows. The man beside her raised his hands and stepped forward.
“Attendez! Ne tirez pas!”
The men put down their weapons and no one advanced on the unicorn. Then, it bowed his head three times in the direction of the man who’d spoken.
‘Come to me, Michelle.’ She turned to find the speaker, but no one was behind her. Everyone stared at the unicorn and it was staring at her. Shaking his mane, the unicorn snorted and stomped the ground.
‘Come to me, Michelle.’ The words rang in her mind.
“Did I hear you correctly?”
The tall man glanced at her. She gave him a hesitant smile and stepped closer to the unicorn. “Why are they afraid of you?” Then she realized. She, too, was afraid.
‘The men fear for their lives. They know my kind will not tolerate deception. Men are filled with falsehood.’
“And I’m not?”
‘Fair Michelle, your heart is good and your music powerful. My master sends me to you.’
“Why…” she began, ‘are you here?’ She let her thought finish the question.
‘I bring a gift for you, Michelle. Come and receive it.’
I can’t believe this. When will I wake up? Despite the churning in her stomach and the trembling fear that made her knees want to give out, she stepped away from the two men beside her. The tall one took her arm. She glanced at him but pulled away. The others shifted on their feet, nervously.
‘’Tis not a dream, Lady Michelle, come to me.’
She moved forward. Should she correct him? Her preferred name was Missie.
‘You will be known by your true name here, Lady Michelle.’
What? Did he know everything? She took another step closer. “I never believed in you.”
‘Once, my ancestors thrived in your world, but the age of iron drove us away.’
‘We waste time.’The unicorn shook his head. ‘Touch me, my Lady, that I may give you the gift.’
“Wait, is this a trick? I have seen horses‒.”
‘I am not a horse. Those dumb beasts have no intelligent thought.’
Missie looked around, nervously. Had anyone else heard this bizarre conversation? The man with the cape spoke quietly to the one dressed in black.
‘Michelle!’ The unicorn rebuked her. Missie reached out and stroked his muscular neck without thinking about it. With the touch, her nerves quieted. Peace replaced her jumbled thoughts.
What has happened? She didn’t expect an answer.
‘You have come through the portal that connects our two worlds. My master has brought you here.’
‘The guy in the road?’ If she guessed correctly, the unicorn didn’t say.
He snorted impatiently. ‘Touch my horn and I will give you the knowledge of their tongue.’
Missie raised her eyes to the unicorn’s ivory horn. He lowered his head, and she ran her fingers along its smooth surface. The sun broke through the overcast sky and a golden light surrounded them. A multitude of colored stars fell among the rays of sunlight, breaking like bubbles in her hair and on her shoulders. She heard the men gasp but continued to watch the falling stars.
Music filled the air. A persuasive tune she had never heard before. Its delicate tone soon became urgent.
The simple melody intertwined into a complex refrain. She could see the notes cavort in her mind’s eye as they filled her soul with…harmony? No, not exactly. Something intangible, unexplainable…bizarre. She didn’t know. How beautiful the music was. I must remember to write it down.
The unicorn pawed the ground. ‘I am called Lómarion. Should you have need of me, call my name, or play the tune that I give you. Do not fear, for the song will come to your memory.’ He nudged her gently and the music faded, the colorful stars evaporated like so many dreams.
‘I give you the language of men. Now I speak of urgent matters. This world is named Gil-Lael. A great darkness envelops the northwest and will overtake both minds and hearts. Your music is needed to destroy its power.’ The unicorn trembled.
“What are you talking about?” Trepidation began to replace Missie’s curiosity.
‘Fear not, Michelle, for great is the power of the Prince of Gil-Lael. He will protect you.’
‘How do you know I’m afraid?’ She shook her head. ‘Never mind.’ “And how am I supposed to find him?”
Lómarion nuzzled her arm. ‘He is here with you now.’
Missie stroked Lómarion’s neck. “I’d like to believe you, but…” ‘You’re not really here. At any moment, I’m going to wake up in an ambulance or hospital bed.’
Lómarion’s whinny made her jump. ‘I am as real as the morning star.’ He circled her tightly and then stopped to face her. ‘Your music will heal all those who hear it but the one, he will be destroyed.’
Destroyed? “Did you say…destroyed?”
Lómarion didn’t answer. He bowed, and then nodded his head at the tall man. ‘Trust the Prince of Gil-Lael.’
Missie backed away as Lómarion reared on his hind legs. He struck the ground hard, tossed his mane and galloped away into the woods.
The Kingdom of Gil-Lael has defeated the evil sorcerer, Renwyk, Lord of the Symberveen, and High King Healden has put up walls to defend itself from the same tragedies happening again.
So, why is it that when Lord Sinon Aweirgan is appointed tutor to one of the king’s sons, Friend-Brother Cadmar, is troubled by an elfin prophecy? And, how can Cadmar alone stand up to Sinon?
Chaos, murder, and mortal illness to king and crown prince come to pass before Cadmar’s eyes.
Investigate the intrigue in Gil-Lael before treachery changes Friend-Brother Cadmar’s life forever.
Content Warning: Violence, Abuse, Sex, Rape, Mind-Control
Contact me for a signed paper copy. $20.99 Plus $5.00 S&H US only.
The Chronicles of Gil-Lael, #3
The son of the king of Gil-Lael arrives in a foreign land to take his place as emperor. Though Jonathan fiercely desires to provide a good and honorable life to his people, he can barely read their writing and finds their customs bizarre. He sees a willing advisor in Tameka.
For Tameka, being near Jonathan is a welcome solace away from her abusive arranged marriage and husband, Ose. However, she must confess the devastating news that the people will never accept Jonathan as their true emperor while he doesn’t possess the magical Bracelet of the Moon and Stars. Lost with the death of the last emperor during the war he fought with Jonathan’s father, no one has seen this talisman in all these years. Then, Tameka learns the horrible truth, her husband, Ose, has the Bracelet, and what he plans to do with it will shatter her world.
Contact me for a signed paper copy. $20.99 Plus $5.00 S&H US only.
Content Warning: Violence, Abuse, Sex, Rape.
A giant emperor rules through the murder of innocents and the destruction of men. By the use of black magic, human sacrifice and the drinking of blood. Druas-Bradwr has lived for 500 years. Now, Arnoux, a farmer's son, will lead a trio of friends on a quest to rid the kingdom of Bradwr. Aided by elves and a wizard, can Arnoux inspire the masses to follow him, to wage war, and kill Bradwr? Or will he and all those he loves become victims of Bradwr's blood lust?
Content Warning: Violence, Human Sacrifice
Contact me for a signed paper copy. $13.99 Plus $5.00 S&H US only.
With the arrival of the Romans, Nilmalith's queen has called a council meeting of all the elfin people in Britain. Nilmalith has been sent as her messenger to gather them together in Caledonia. Mishaps abound as he struggles to fulfill his mission finding love along the way
Read on Kindle Vella Now!
Through the many worlds beyond these pages, the diverse characters, and eras, one universal truth exists. Love.
The Depths of Love and the deep reaches one will go for love often know no bounds. In this anthology, love goes the distance, for a hand in marriage, for a child's safety, for friends, and even for someone thought dead.
Come with us through these journeys across rich worlds, and flourish in the trenches of protagonists fighting and rushing into danger just for a taste of that universal truth.
This first collaboration between SciFi & Fantasy Writers Guild and Cloaked Press explores the magic that is Love.
With Stories From:
M.A. Roberts - Children of the Sea
R.Q. Woodward - Woodbine
Lowry Poletti - I Returned in the Night
N.R. Williams - Loren's Choice
Mark J. Schultis - For Neepa
Bethany A. Perry - He's Still With Me
R.A. Meenan - Even These Decisions
Brandon Fife - Blood Money
M.D. Weather - Eka the Duskweaver
Ignacio R. Limón - Ehi! Ragazzino!
Susan Eschbach - Hope Takes Flight
Clementine Fraser - The Quest of Megan Weaversdotter
Andrew M. Ferrell - Talon's Love
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What does it mean to be 'Superhuman'? Not just super powers or flashy costuming. What lies beneath the surface? What makes the psyche tick? Fourteen authors from the Cloaked Press Family explore this theme in our first Winter of Wonder anthology. Join them as they explore strange alien worlds, yet find some humanity within its monstrous inhabitants. Come along with an assassin long due for retirement, and a bounty hunter pushing his luck far beyond his competitors. Magical weapons and magical tapestries abound, while one incredible man serves a wife he didn't choose. Meet those who chose not to blindly follow protocol and serve, be that from a teacher, a friend and former lover, or the Queen Goddess herself. Superheroes are sometimes not what they seem, and sometimes allies come from unexpected places. Each story contains something more than mere plain mortals are accustomed to. What will you find within yourself amongst the "Superhuman"?
The Magic of Windlier Woods, a children’s bedtime story book.
Newert, an erbit of Windlier Woods, is concerned. The magic of his world is seeping away. He struggles to open a portal to another world, believing that this will restore the magic of Windlier Woods.
Assuming the big red truck is magical he returns to his world with the truck and its driver.
Thus, begins Newert's misadventure. Will the red truck restore magic to Windlier Woods? Or will Newert take the ride of his life?
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Loren’s Choice is an epic-high fantasy romance. Loren’s parents want her to choose from the young men in her village and marry. But, that’s not what Loren wants. While at the village well, a stranger arrives. Tall and handsome, he intrigues her. When the emperor’s soldiers are spotted. The threat is upon them, Loren could become a blood sacrifice. Before she can run, the stranger grabs her and gallops for the covering of the forest. What will happen next?