Wraithshard by Jonathan Moeller
English | 2020 | Fantasy | ePUB | 2.8 MB
Standing over six feet tall, Jonathan Moeller has the piercing blue eyes of a Conan of Cimmeria, the bronze-colored hair of a Visigothic warrior-king, and the stern visage of a captain of men, none of which are useful in his career as a computer repairman, alas. He has written the DEMONSOULED series of sword-and-sorcery novels, the TOWER OF ENDLESS WORLDS urban fantasy series, THE GHOSTS series about assassin and spy Caina Amalas, the COMPUTER BEGINNER’S GUIDE sequence of computer books, and numerous other works.
The Malrag hordes have invaded the Grim Marches once more, and Mazael Cravenlock must rally his knights and warriors to face the enemy. But the necromancer Lucan Mandragon has also returned. Has he repented of his past crimes, or does he intend new evils? Mazael doesn’t know, but he will stop anyone trying to bring fire & sword to the Grim Marches. Including Lucan Mandragon…
On his right hip was the hilt of a broken sword slid into a dagger’s sheath. Once Lion had been a longsword of gleaming blue-tinted steel, its pommel wrought into the shape of a golden lion’s head with rubies for eyes. The blade ended a foot from the crosspiece. Lion had been a powerful magical weapon, and Mazael had carried it into battle against deadly foes. The sword had destroyed the ancient Old Demon, though it had been broken in the process, and now only the hiltshard remained.
Mazael wasn’t sure why he was carrying Lion’s hiltshard. Riothamus had said that Mazael would need it, and so he had brought the hiltshard back after defeating Val-Ulzurda’s attack on Castle Cravenlock. He had thought he might need the broken sword during the final battle at Castle Valdrake, but it had proven unnecessary.
Still, Mazael had never known the Guardian to be wrong, so he kept the hiltshard of Lion with him.
Perhaps Riothamus’s vision had something to do with the shadow that troubled Romaria.
Mazael shook off the thought and rode through the camp, dismissing his squires to attend their other duties. The tents were unfolded and packed, and the horses and oxen yoked to the supply wagons. Mazael greeted his lords and knights, making certain that everything went as it should. In truth, there was little for him to do just now. His men went about their business. All of them were veterans of the battle at the Valley of Burned Men and Castle Valdrake, and some of them had survived all the major battles of the last ten years – Knightcastle, the battle of the Northwater, the Malrag invasion, and others. But soldiers needed to see the eye of their lord upon them, to know that their labors met with his approval.
Mazael did make sure to send out extra scouts, telling them to remain vigilant.
In short order, the camp was broken, the wagons reloaded, and the host resumed its march southwest. His squires brought his horse, and Mazael mounted and rode in search of his daughter.
Molly Cravenlock was not hard to find. His daughter held Sword Town and its surrounding villages and castles as a fief, which made her the second most powerful noble in the Grim Marches. She was also Mazael’s heir, which meant that when he died, she would become the liege lady of the Grim Marches. Though Mazael had no idea how long he would live. The Demonsouled fire in his blood made him stronger and faster than a normal man, certainly stronger than he should have been at his age. Would that translate to a longer lifespan? He didn’t know, and neither did anyone else who knew anything about the Demonsouled. The Demonsouled had almost always met violent and bloody ends. The Old Demon had lived for over three thousand years, but he had been the progenitor of the Demonsouled, the strongest of them all.