It’s day four of the Great Tower and The Eye re-release by Blue Hour Publishing!
If you’ve been reading along with the releases – remember, we had book 1 on monday, book 2 on tuesday, book 3 on wednesday – then you’ll have an inkling of who the heroine in this book is.
Another border skirmish with the Franierens forces the Elves to send Lady Julissa Alethdan to hunt for the Harp of Aleth; a magical harp capable of healing the most tormented of souls and calming the fury of battle into peace.
This should be an easy task, after all, the dungeon she is entering was cleansed over a hundred years ago…
This particular book is where the overarching story (the one that connects all the books) begins to make sense. Tying the stories together here helped me to see the shape of the final book.
It’s also not as battle orientated as the previous books. I had a party full of academics to play with, and as I’d had a few comments about my blood thirsty-ness in the previous books, I wanted to see if I could get them in and out without killing anyone… well, except enemies!
So here’s the excerpt:
Before they shut the door, Joran fed the Blood Bat again and sent it out to keep an eye on the situation. He chose one of the chairs, sat down and closed his eyes. After a moment, he started recounting what was happening.
“It’s Tavia. She’s wearing some kind of strange armour and is fighting the creatures as they come into the guard post.”
“Is she getting hurt?” Virrinel asked, his whiskers still twitching.
“No. There appears to be a shield spell embedded in the armour. Good thing too, I don’t think armour like that would protect much of her body.” Joran chuckled. “Oh she just took out a pair of Dark Mistresses with one slice. That’s some sword she has there.”
Silence fell, punctuated by chuckles and gasps from Joran. Julissa’s face dropped further with every noise and Virrinel subtly put himself between his blood brother and his mistress. I wouldn’t want Joran to get hurt before we get out of this place.
Finally, Julissa’s patience snapped.
“Ser Joran. If Tavia is keeping the creatures occupied, we should have a clear run down to the Treasury.”
Joran opened his eyes momentarily.
“That is true. I’ll send my little friend into the Training room as I believe that was the next port of call, and see if there’s anyone in there.”
“Good. Virrinel, move back out to the crossroads and keep watch. You know how to contact me if you see anything.” The Autochthon nodded grudgingly and left the room.
Qin-Dar sniffed the air as Joran shut his eyes again.
“I smell something wrong.”
“This whole place is wrong.” Julissa’s temper was not improving. “There weren’t supposed to be any creatures here. Tavia…” she trailed off and frowned. “How did Tavia get to the guard post and into that fight without us seeing her come past?”
“That’s what I smell. There is more than one dark force at work in this disgusting place.” Qin-Dar shook herself. “Let us get the harp and retreat to safety as fast as possible.”
Joran’s eyes snapped open.
“Excellent idea, Lady Qin-Dar. The way is clear to the training room and it is empty; even the guard post outside its south-eastern entrance is vacant.” He stood up and moved to the door. As he opened it, the blood bat fluttered in and landed on his shoulder, its mouth opening and closing in the same way as a dog would pant.
Qin-Dar looked at the bat.
“Ser Joran. I suggest that you leave your friend in here. He is too exhausted to do any more and needs to sleep.”
Joran nodded and tenderly picked the bat from his shoulder, setting the tiny creature on the topmost shelf of a nearby bookcase.
Julissa’s heart softened as she watched him feed the bat one last time.
“You can pick him up on the way out; this is probably the safest route back.”
The tiny bat flipped upside down to hang from the beam above the bookcase and wrapped its wings around itself.
Joran smiled at Julissa.
“Shall we continue in your quest, m’lady?”
There are two places that you can read more of this story and find out how the rest of the book turned out. The first is in the ebook:
The second is in the Omnibus Book which is available in both print and electronic forms: