A Brightness Long Ago by Guy Gavriel Kay
English | 2019 | Fantasy, Historical | ePUB | 2.1 Mb
A Brightness Long Ago:International bestselling author Guy Gavriel Kay’s latest work is set in a world evoking early Renaissance Italy and offers an extraordinary cast of characters whose lives come together through destiny, love, and ambition.
In a chamber overlooking the nighttime waterways of a maritime city, a man looks back on his youth and the people who shaped his life. Danio Cerra’s intelligence won him entry to a renowned school even though he was only the son of a tailor. He took service at the court of a ruling count–and soon learned why that man was known as the Beast.
Danio’s fate changed the moment he saw and recognized Adria Ripoli as she entered the count’s chambers one autumn night–intending to kill. Born to power, Adria had chosen, instead of a life of comfort, one of danger–and freedom. Which is how she encounters Danio in a perilous time and place.
Vivid figures share the unfolding story. Among them: a healer determined to defy her expected lot; a charming, frivolous son of immense wealth; a powerful religious leader more decadent than devout; and, affecting all these lives and many more, two larger-than-life mercenary commanders, lifelong adversaries, whose rivalry puts a world in the balance.
A Brightness Long Ago offers both compelling drama and deeply moving reflections on the nature of memory, the choices we make in life, and the role played by the turning of Fortune’s wheel.
“It had brought her here tonight, hadn’t it? To this palace. Her own choice. She told herself that. It was almost true.
“If he’s quieter it almost always means a calmer night,” the steward said, answering her question. Calmer, she thought. “Be . . . agreeable, but not eager. He likes . . . the count likes a sense that a girl knows nothing of . . . these matters.”
“I am a maiden still,” she said. It happened to be the truth.
“Of course, of course!” he said quickly. She saw him blush by lamplight. He cleared his throat. “I will be waiting. Right here.”
“Why, my lord?” she asked. A little reckless.
“Well, to call the guards to take you home, after.”
“Oh,” she said. “There’s that, then. I thank you.” She spoke with a country accent. “Will he hurt me?” she asked. It seemed the sort of thing a girl might ask, with the tales told.
He looked away. “Just . . . be agreeable. As I said, he’s quiet tonight.”
“Yes, my lord,” she said.
She could still see the outline of that figure on the servants’ stairway. The two guards had gone back down the main staircase.
“Come now,” said the steward. He led her to a heavy door. He knocked, softly.
“Send her in to me,” came a voice, immediately. Hearing it, she did feel a great fear. The steward opened the door.”