SAMPLE CHAPTERS & ARTWORK UPDATES

Posts tagged ‘fantasy’

Chapter Snippet

The beginning of next Chapter. This marks the eleventh chapter thus far in No’va

*****

Nickademis eyed the sea of wavering brown and green grass. There was little movement where he had last seen the young harpy until a shift in the pattern of bending reeds confirmed her location. Huffing out a sigh, he continued down the path Windchester had cleared once again.

A sudden squeal, followed by a burst of feathers emerged directly alongside the doctor. He halted in a panicked skid before realizing she had caught a field mouse.

“Someone’s enjoying breakfast.” he grumbled.

Amber eyes peered up at him, the mouse’s tail still twitching along her dark lips. It was intriguing to actually view all of her facial markings during the daylight hours. A black line went from brow to chin, with thinner ones fanned out across her cheekbones. Unfurling her wings broke the illusion that kept them from tangling in tight spaces. Yet even they contained shades of greens and brown alongside the darker plumage.

Everest stood, sucking in the tail and ticking her lips. A small lump could be seen traveling down her throat when she tilted her head back to help get it down. A shake of her feathered head brought a grin, and she patted her belly.

“Earrrly morrrningsss are the bessst,” she hissed with pride. Her top crest of feathers fanned out as wide as her toothy smile before layering flat over her hair once again. The hissing vanished with her next comment, “You should try it sometime. Leaves the whole day open afterwards.”

“I saw some rabbits,” Phine commented from behind the doctor. “Would make a nice stew if we could catch ’em.”

“Perhaps you could assist in helping them,” Windchester suggested to the harpy. “Although I am not permitted to harm the creatures that grant our shifting abilities, that doesn’t mean I will stop anyone else from obtaining their rightful nourishment.”

“With pleasssurrre,” Everest purred in delight before folding her wings in a fade. She then darted back into the wavering blades.

Sea of Thieves Trailer

Now this looks epic! I’ve always loved games that had good water graphics. From what I’ve seen, this game looks very promising with that. And with any sea adventure, there’s rumors or creatures to come. It’s a fairly new game that can be played with friends. Discover treasure, fight other pirates, take hold of your own ship, sing sad lullabies, and water out for sharks! Question is… how long can you hold your breath underwater???

AND…. the Kraken?? Is it coming? And when?!! There are recordings of strange “teaser” monster calls in the distance. So perhaps it’s sooner than we think. From only having seen a few pieces of it, this looks fairly promising.

New Short Story – Snippet

Short story I’m currently writing, which would take place after the defeat of the Dark Horn….

*****

A Chance to Represent

Nina watched the men from deck toss thick ropes down to the docks. It was fascinating how quickly they secured the ship. She heard the scrape of metal plank settling against the wooden docks as they prepared to disembark. Journey across the Sea of Sages was just the beginning. Looking beyond to the misty mountains filled her imagination with this strange new world… and questions.

The port itself peaked her curiosity with its many merchants and wares lined down the streets, and packed with travelers going either direction. There was already a line forming to board arriving ships – those of well-dressed quality, and all human. That much she could tell.

“They’re not accustomed to your kind yet,” she said to the robed figure standing close by. “Not even a harpy in sight.”

Those white-tufted ears slightly laid back at her words. A sapphire gaze glanced her way. If the ears did not give away his identity, the jeweled eyes would. Although his albino appearance amidst everything else usually turned heads in any new city. He gave her a warm smile.

“You wouldn’t here. And Healers generally don’t deal with non-magic destinations,” was his reply. “Normally, I wouldn’t myself. But this new role requires passage through all types of locations. Astra just so happens to be the central point for the next meeting.”

“And everyone who is magic will be there.” Nina turned to her second companion, a fiery-haired girl with gold streaks curled down around her face. The young Ember Mage smirked. “Except I’ve heard rumors that they’ve started checking for Dark Magic here.” Her gaze trailed past Nina to the prince. “So how are you planning to get her in, Embassador?”

“Wisdom doesn’t have to do anything,” Nina replied calmly. “He’s done enough to get this far. I can sense things, remember? I’ll know if someone’s coming.” With a sigh, she returned to staring out toward the mountains again. It helped calm her acute awareness of rushing crowds below. Control. Being a Dark One was all about control. She had learned that as a child. Now in her late teens, she felt compelled to accompany the prince and early Ember Mage appentrentice. The disturbance in Magic was stronger here than expected, as though a whole slew of people were about to experience Change.

She must have had that blank stare too long, for the she felt the prince’s hand on her shoulder. Nina turned her opal gaze to find the prince motioning to someone below.

“Our guide has arrived,” he said.”

“Will she accept Nina?”

“There’s no negative feelings yet, Kendra.”

The girl folded her hands in a huff. “Yes, but does this guide know that you’re here with us?”

“I did mention it to Kris once,” Wisdom said. “Should be fine. She’s not unaccomstomed to Dark One’s appearances.”

To be continued…

Snippet Time!

What I’m currently working on in the latest chapter of No’va.

*****

Its puce skin looked soft and moist from being in the humid climate. If not for a few sharp features and wings flinging even more mud at their faces, it might not have looked very intimidating. Another bubble brought several more into the air. One even carried its young, which clung to its underside and squeaked when the parent made any sudden movements.

Providence held his position, keeping himself between the men and harpy-demons. If he spoke to them, it came out in a series of clicks and sharp gurgles. Whatever the meaning, the creatures returned with threatening hisses. Soon the Healer began to back up where the men were standing. Slightly turning his head to peer over one shoulder, he warned, “Prepare yourselves.”

While the men just looked at one another and around at their sloppy situation, Jenario had his eye somewhere else.

“The water.” He nudged one of them in the direction of the island. “We can swim for it.”

The idea of swimming in swamp water was no more appealing than what suddenly swooped down at them. At a shout from Providence, the men turned to flee. Some of them ended face-down in the muck while harpy-demons clawed at those who still managed to keep their footing. There were at least twelve, with more on the way as Jenario noticed larger bubbles beginning to pop along the tunnel’s edge.

Like the others, Jenario kept his arms over his face when he was attacked. They came in pairs, effectively moving the men away from those who carried young. In between the chaos of yanking at his clothing, pinching claws and bites, he noticed those carrying smaller ones stayed back. There was no sign of Providence, though he caught a hint of green robe in between flapping wings and heard his commands to get as far from the tunnels as possible. Whether the harpy-demons actually attacked the Healer, he was unsure. At the moment, they just needed to find a way out, so Jenario took the one opportunity he had before a leathery wing gashed his cheek.

He dived. It came as a surprise that his boots got the traction they needed for the final push over the mound and down under the water. It was too murky to see, but he could hear several splashes from above as though the creatures tried to follow.

Jenario did not wait. The water was not deep, as his hand quickly touched a slimy bottom. Things that grew underwater slipped along his stomach. He could feel the bark of trees, or what he assumed were trees silently decaying in the dark. He found places to hold and started pulling himself along. Best to stay low, he realized. If they see any disturbance in the water, they might come back.

His thoughts drifted to the other men when muffled variations of dives came from behind. It was an oily sound, like slapping a thick soup. The cooks used to do that back at Mayla when they had just hauled in unusual looking shelled fish, fresh from port. They would slap their ladles across their hard backs in attempts to keep them down, just long enough for the pot’s lid to clamp shut. After the steaming process, they were then peeled and ladled into a thick stew. It had made a delicious impression on the council, who requested it more often than the normal broths containing just vegetables and beef. One would think a chef would not have needed an alchemist, but tasteful ingredients were always needed. Thus Jenario found himself called upon for food preparation more so than medicine, and he hated every moment of it. The very smell of his current pardictument was a good reason to despise becoming a culinary alchemist. A sudden flashback to himself pulverizing oil glands from a stinking fish corpse made his stomach churn.

He thrust up for a quick breath, unable to hold it any longer. The water did not fully break as quickly as a clear stream would have, so he received a mouthful of floating debris and muddy water. This set off a sputter of choking
gasps and hacks to clear his lungs. The gash on his cheek stung once in open air, sure it would get infected from whatever else sufficated in its muddy clutches.

*****

The image below might be something they swim in to reach the so-called ‘island’

swamp water

Relic’s Keeper – Concept

Azryael turned to face the swirling mist of darkness. It too, seemed to respond by rising to meet his height, twisting in upon itself in a whirl of shapeless matter and sparks as if cutting into the slab floor. Toward the top, a notch of strange spherical impression seemed to push within the darkness whenever it moved. It was almost as if…was that a face?

“We’re not so different, you and I…” A hoarse whisper could be heard from the moving void. It expanded a moment before compressing to complete a basic human form. What stepped from that void was no more surprising than his first meeting with Christauni as a Shadow.

“Rivan.” Azryael had not said that name since the days of his crippled childhood. Rivan had been born blind, and still was by the looks of his opal gaze. “So I see the Eternal Night has become your way of seeing, just as the Light has become my strength.”

“Isn’t it funny…how we were chosen? We were the ones that no one wanted – the trash kicked aside in the streets. We had only each other then. Now, we rely on something much better.”  

“Tell me how this is better?” Azryael pointed to the men still struggling against their chains to turn the giant wheel. It was painful to hear the last of fragmented crystals crushed to dust. That was the last of the Light shards. All that remained, he carried within himself.

“They deserve their fate!” Rivan’s voice boomed, throwing off patches of darkness as he moved around him. “They misused their own source of hope. Now it’s all dead.”

“The Eternal Night is not meant to be used this way either, Rivan.” Azryael tried to remain calm. “You’ve been here long enough to know that. Destroying the Light will jeopardize life itself. We may not be in existence if you extinguish it all!”

“Perhaps it will be a new dawn for us then. Is it all that bad? As it is, I didn’t expect the Light to chose anything other than a dead object in hopes to evade me. Seems it finally got smart.” His form broke in various places to swirl and reform. It was hard to keep an eye on his movements, as the Darkness had the speed of a cobra. It would not be long before an attempted strike. Well, not smart enough. You still led it right to me. For that, I thank you.”

 

 

 

 

200 Subscribers!

Wow, I really appreciate all your support.

As a little gift, I’d like to offer my third novel “Healer” as a freebee on Amazon Kindle. The free download will start September 23 and last until September 27, 2016. Download Healer for Kindle here!

Also, here is a coloring page you can download that I saved from my last painting. Download coloring page here!eastern_dragon_horse_lineart_by_bonbon3272-daes87r

 

The Youngest Child

When I eventually reach book 7, Wisdom will have three children. His oldest will be Keith, named after himself because he too will be albino. The middle child, Gaily, will be human, and the third child will be mysterious and observant – a half-breed of human and Healer.

It is the third child that I will be most interested in writing: Koréken. The name and looks is in honor of Corrigan, the Black Wing that assists his father in previous adventures. But Koré is more than just a dark-haired child with pale eyes. He has strange abilities that neither Healer or humans use. What’s even stranger is his ability to manipulate the energy within someone else, but cannot use it directly within himself. He acts as a weather forecaster. Except instead of predicting weather, he can foresee the emotions or intentions behind someone approaching. Therefore, he’s able to give fair warning to flee or stay.

Koré is conservative in speech. He prefers quiet spots to enjoy reading the collections of books his father keeps in their home library.  He develops a method of touch that involves pressure points. Pressure points on the body can do a number of things, including but not limited to temporarily paralysis, muscle control,  or easing pain.

Koré is confused with another developing problem. Dubbed as Dark Ones, these are regular people who suddenly grow pale, with white eyes and black hair. Surrounding energy flocks to them and releases in such a way that it causes a mass of destruction before they’re able to learn control. But Koré  is able to help these people. By using his ability to manipulate energy, he’s able to give them enough time to learn how to deal with what’s happening to them. However, the threat of more becoming Dark Ones and why it’s happening is alarming.

It’s no surprise that many people see Wisdom’s son as a Dark One, leading him to defend his family to the point where he himself is being blamed for the outcome.

Undead?

I could see a potential undead situation in the type of fantasy I write. Let’s just say that a spell goes awry and causes a mass of undead to rise, including Wisdom, long after his time had passed.

In Wisdom’s case, Nature keeps his spirit and memories intact so that when his body rises they are joined back together. I can definitely see a scene where, without those, his body would just react like a normal zombie – floundering about, ready to rip someone’s arm off until the gets his wits back.

Just a passing thought…

 

Vamperic Race?

Is there a vampire-like race in No’va? No. But I have had ideas about a race that once were feared by the living due to their blood-thirsty nature. It’s not until later when a new leader takes over that he realizes they’re wasting precious food by ripping into their victims and letting them die when they only need a few drops every couple of generations.

In steps the new, sophisticated being (unnamed) who dwells in decked-up caverns and ensure their selected “honored” guests that they will once again walk out to see daylight. The guests are dined and wined and pleasured beyond their wildest dreams until they are at ease with what is about to happen to them. The reason is fear. Fear petrifies the blood flow. Changes the taste. They want that fresh, succulent dip of ruby red, like fine wine to the tongue. Once they have it, the guest is free to leave.

I don’t plan to develop this any further. Just a passing thought.

Chapter 4 Teaser

The main chamber was littered with coughing individuals, all huddled together under blankets or whatever they had managed to bring with them. It was easy to pick out Tia, her crested black hair a style no one else had. She cradled the wheezing child in her arms, his shaking shoulders in beat with his discomfort.

“Tia!” Jenario was by her side in an instant. “Nickademis has the medicine!”

She was nearly in tears at the sight of him, but said nothing at the answering wheeze of their young son.

“Give him here.” Jenario took Abraham in his arms and cradled in tightly to his chest. The boy let out a series of coughs that shook his father’s shoulders. He stared into Tia’s pleading gaze. “Nick! Hurry!”

“Jen?” Thomas Gracie and Shafari entered the chamber to assess the number of those ill.

“I might be able to raise the heat a bit,” Shafari offered, but Thomas Gracie’s warning glance silenced him from saying anything further.

“They need more than just warmth.” The extra voice perked Tia’s attention toward an unfamiliar figure stepping in between the two men. He sought out Jenario in the crowd and started toward him.

Sensing Tia’s anxiety, especially when noticing those pointed ears, Jenario rested a hand over hers.

“It’s all right,” he said gently. “He helped us gather medicine on the other side.” As the Healer knelt beside him, Jenario introduced him to his fiancée.

Forest green gaze met the pixie-haired woman’s defensive staredown.

“May I?” Providence indicated to take Abraham, but as Jenario was about to hand over his son, Tia slapped a hand over his arm.

“What are you doing?! You already know how I feel about Shafari’s botched-up magic. What makes you think someone else is any different?”

Even without witnessing power, Tia was no fool. Jenario swore she had an hidden sensor to hone in on magic. The outburst, however, put a shade of red across his cheeks. He could sense Shafari’s embarrassment as well. Surely, their visitor would feel the same, but a quick glance revealed a look of understanding.

“If there was a way to make medicine produce itself, there’d be no need for us. But for your son’s sake, please.” Again, he held out his hands to take Abraham. “Time is against him.”

“Just this once, I swear it! Abraham needs all the time he can get.” Jenario dared not move. It was her call now. The glare of worry and betrayal were prominent in those eyes. Reluctantly, she released his arm. Only then did he hand over his son.

It was a bold move, but one he feared if not taken would result in a harsher consequence than defying Tia’s beliefs. He watched her leave in silent anger. This, however, did little to deter the Healer from his task. Providence only briefly followed her departure before centering all concentration on the child.

“I know that feeling.” He placed a hand over Abraham’s chest. A warm glow quickly emitted from beneath the fingers. “Winter does not allow us to connect with Nature’s energy. But I should have a enough to spare. Don’t worry. She’ll come around when she sees her son is well.”

“What of the others?” It was hard to ignore the harsh coughs reverberating off the walls.

“Hopefully, your doctor will have his medicine in time…if he’s skilled,” Providence said.

“The best Mayla had.” Jenario let his focus drift, like the lone flakes that managed to bypass the canvas flap covering the mouth of the cave. He watched them linger in the air until they drifted over one of the campfires and melted away. “They let everything go.”

The sound of someone sucking in a deep breath alerted Jenario back to his son. The wheezing subsided, and for once Abraham opened his eyes and smiled at his father.

“That’s my brave boy,” he whispered down to him. He looked up to the sound of hurried steps. While Thomas Gracie and Shafari helped with keeping the fires going and distributing food, Nickademis came with a tray of medicines he had prepared.

“Nicolas!” The teenager swiftly came to his father’s summon. “These need to be kept warm.”

Jenario noticed how Providence scrutinized every move the doctor’s son made. Though limited in magic, he managed to heat a flask to the desired temperature. It was enough to get over to Jenario’s son and administer the first few drops of dark liquid. Nickademis then hurried to others, repeating the process until there was none left.

“I’ll need more, but this should do for now,” he said to regrouping leaders at the back of the chamber.

Jenario got up to join the others, having taken his son from Providence. The child was squirming to get down as his father watched Nicolas leave with the empty bottles and tray. His gaze finally landed on Tia, who had been watching the entire process from the back. She brushed past the teenager, never acknowledging his help.

“You can already tell a difference.” Jenario could hear Thomas Gracie addressing the others. Providence had joined the group as well, but watched the pixie-haired woman with interest when she crossed the chamber at a brisk pace to take her son.

“I’ll handle it from here,” she said quickly.

“Tia…” But there was no use in arguing. With a sigh, Jenario made his way toward his companions.

“She ought to be more thankful,” Shafari said. “Your son wouldn’t have made it this far without us trying to get supplies. And then with the healing….”

“Tia’s…Tia.” Jenario scratched his spiked-hair in doubt. “She knows what she likes.”

“And what she doesn’t, no doubt.” Providence gradually shifted his focus from the woman to Nickademis. “I’m impressed with what little you had to work with.” He gestured around the room. “This is a large group to handle.”

“I do what I can…under the circumstances.”

“And under the circumstances, we’re running low on firewood,” Thomas Gracie added. “No one’s been out in that storm since our departure.”

“Well, why should they?” Shafari checked for dirt under his nails. Seeing some gritty spots, he tried to pick it out before allowing his fingers to weave through the air in magical demonstration. “That’s why they have us.” His cocky grin put everyone at ease, with Thomas Gracie only shaking his head at his meaning.

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