SAMPLE CHAPTERS & ARTWORK UPDATES

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Getting Over It

So…. what do I think of this game? See for yourself…

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Merry Christmas!

I hope everyone has a safe holiday and have a wonderful Christmas!

holidays

Chapter Snippet

From latest novel “No’va”

*****

“Forgive my ignorance, but it’s bit harder when I can only study written formulas.” Shafari gripped the log he sat on and pushed himself to a standing position. The way the vines moved was unnerving. Across from him, he could sense Thomas Gracie’s unease in his attempts to settle things in conversation. From the other two, he heard nothing as his full attention now rested on the Healer standing before him.

“Writing magic?” She chortled. “So you can manipulate it into something other than what it was meant to be?” That playful gaze suddenly turned cold. Shafari noticed those plush lips thin in a frown. “If that’s all human magic-users care about then maybe your Council should have finished you off.”

“Shafari….” He heard Thomas Gracie’s warning, but he was too busy controlling his inner anger. He could feel vines slithering across his boots. For a fleeting moment, he wished he could have extinguished her instead of the orb.

Suddenly, she stepped back and laughed, her giddy manner catching the men off guard. “But what do I know?” A single gesture retracted the vines back where they belonged.

A startling slap to the leg from a backtracking vine brought a gasp from the magic-user. No more than that, it immediately drew the orb to him in a flash of red hot pulses. As though the anger had transferred from the magic-user, the heated light advanced upon the Healer in a swift lunge that made her jump back out of fear of being burnt. Now it was Shafari’s moment to laugh as the light flickered a moment more as if shaking off a temper. Soft yellow soon returned and it retreated back to its master’s outstretched hand, darting over and under with gentle flickers as if checking him over.

“That’s just it,” he said with a satisfied grin. “You don’t know.”

“That’s quite enough, thank you.” Thomas Gracie rose quickly and stepped between the two. He glared at Shafari a moment before turning to the female, who by now had recomposed herself. “My apologies, but all of us have been affected by the Council, not just magic-users. It is why we came – to escape an unjustified persecution.” To Shafari, he then mouthed the words SIT, in which his companion did so with refined dignity. A returned smirk caused a sigh from Thomas Gracie and soon took a seat again to watch the playful orb weave around its master’s hand.

The Healer returned to leaning back against the tree. Though her gaze never left the magic-user, it no longer contained that sting of coldness to it. Drooping shoulders suggested that she, too, was weary from the day’s journey.

“You should put that away now, Shafari,” Thomas Gracie said. “We need rest for tomorrow. I don’t mind taking first Watch.” He motioned to the Healer. “You should as well.”

“I intend to,” was her response. “But it will be at my own choosing.”

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Everest – Progress

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Wisdom Snow Progress

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Finished Art

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Chapter Snippet

“Will you stay still, please?” Aggravation built in Shafari’s voice. He pointed to the map Thomas Gracie laid out before them. In absence of fire, Shafari had offered his guiding light, which was proving more challenging by the minute. “Trying to read here.”

Whether it was tone of his voice or that warning glare from the accompanying Healer, the bobbing orb finally stilled its frolicking a moment to hover over the crinkled paper. Thomas Gracie could not help but look up now and then to the lone female leaning against a hefty tree trunk. Once or twice, the orb’s illumination caught an emerald glow of power building in that collective gaze, though he was sure it was just shy of plucking it out of existence. It had plucked the last of his nerves as well with its behavior.

“Bet you could dangle a thorn before it and it’d follow,” he commented more to himself but received agreeing nods from the other two men. “You need to get that thing under control, Shafari.”

“Right,” came the mumbling voice of Nathan as he stretched out over the ground with hands behind his head. “It’ll run off any game we reach.”

“Could make a little caged lantern for it.” A young man settled close to the Trapper with a yawn.

Shafari peered over at him with a frown, but Thomas Gracie perked up, intrigued.

“Roland Elite, isn’t it? Your name came up quite a bit in Council meetings. Seemed you did very well for yourself.”

“Was fairly decent money,” Roland said.

Shafari balked. “Not decent enough. You’re here.”

“Well, you couldn’t help but feel trapped. At one point Mayla’s gates used to stay open. We did business with local villages. But…after that explosion happened..seemed like everything changed.”

Thomas Gracie remained quiet. No doubt, he referred to Tia’s brother. Shortly after, the gates were ordered closed and remained so until the night of their planned escape.

“They could never settle on any agreement,” Roland continued. “I thought things might change when they spoke of expanding the city.”

“Expanding?” Shafari said with a sarcastic chuckle. “All I ever heard was reinforcing the prison system.”

“That was most likely for magic-users,” Thomas Gracie said. “Obviously, they changed their minds.” He heard the Healer sigh and lifted his gaze to meet one of calm complexion. With the orb hovering close by, she seemed more at ease. Yet no sooner had his eyes left the paper than the orb lost focus. “Light please!”

“I can see why you’d need them,” came an uninterested mutter before averting her attention elsewhere.

Thomas Gracie cleared his throat and went back to studying his map. He checked Shafari, who sat back with annoyed expression.

“Come.” He motioned for the orb, though it hesitated.

“Shafari.”

Ignoring Thomas Gracie, he tried again. “Don’t make me extinguish you.” It dimmed its light and hid behind his back, only brightening when peering out from behind. “Thought not.” He commenced to tell it something when it danced out into the open again. This time, the flickering glow of fireflies drew its curiosity.

Maybe do the firefly dance here

Thomas Gracie just shook his head. “It’ll never truly function for what you created it for. Might as well accept that.”

“It just needs some tweaking.”

“Like the time you tweaked it to follow those who wore red?”

“That was in the first stages of its creation. And I was merely trying to get it to recognize color of my choosing.”

“It’s interesting you choose that one — the color of your element,” came the Healer’s soothing, yet sarcastic voice. “Or did you not know what it would be at that time? If such things are possible with humans.”

“I knew nothing of the sort.” Shafari‘s tone hinted rising anger, though he tried to shrug it off. “I studied magic. Nothing more.”

“You could not have studied much without knowing the effects elements could have on it.” She lifted a hand to demonstrate her meaning. Slowly, vines uncoiled from around the roots of the tree, rising to form various shapes to her instructing gestures. “Emotions, too, have colors. Magic that stems from them display the colors of their destructive nature.” Fingers stilled, and as she held position so did the vines.

Shafari tensed, recognizing some of the symbols from his studies.

“Red? Now that is something to be cautious,” she said.

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