SAMPLE CHAPTERS & ARTWORK UPDATES

Chapter Opening

The next chapter in No’va… it’s time to start moving out!

*****

Jenario tightened a cord around his packs while whistling a jolly tune. He glanced over to see some of the other members already finished, their sleeping bags rolled and tents propped up against pots still cooling from the morning’s breakfast – leftover stew. Meat came in various forms, since their Trapper had to wander farther each time to look. Mostly, it was whatever he could scavenge from the last Black Wing scraps. So far, no one had found their way across an active hunting path, though Black Wing calls could be heard from anywhere, not to mention the hefty number of feathers left behind. It was a wonder one could fetch any amount of meat from the pile of blood-soaked plumes covering it, as though it was a way to ward off any other trying to grab the remains.

Pushing all other thoughts aside, Jenario focused on the day’s new course of action – moving. If all went well, then everyone would leave the clearing within a day or so. The plan, however, was still in the works, as noted by a message scribbled out on parchment in Shafari’s sloppy handwriting.

Good luck writing your own spells! He chuckled to himself. It’s barely legible now. Jenario had seen how complicated formulas could get just while working with medicines. He could only imagine how delicate it could become with spell-crafting. If the formula was off, even slightly, disaster was its only outcome. He did not even want to consider the possibilities of mispronouncing a word. None of us possess the ability to see the effects of magic beforehand. And with Tia now just accepting it, it’s too risky to try again. At least, not the way William did it. I need to practice my alchemy. The unicorn said I would get better. So I need to try!

There came a tug on his pants, and Jenario looked down to find his son grinning from ear to ear. In play, Abraham bounded away to his mother, who was also packing up her belongings. The boy’s cheerful laughter livened the mood from those around, who followed his wobbly movements as he dashed back to his father’s side. When Abraham dived belly-first into his sleeping bag, Jenario pretended to roll him up with the blankets.

“You’re a mess,” he heard Tia say amidst his son’s squeals of delight. “So what did the note say, if you can decipher anything from a magic-user?”

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