Phoenix Rising Chapter 23

  Well, Tobimar and Poplock had found a problem with their interview...   -----       Chapter 23.        "My thanks, and those of the city, again, Tobimar," Toron said, sinking into one of the massive split-backed Sauran chairs with the air of one who knows he will soon be forced to rise, and relished the moment of stillness.        Poplock hung on a bit tighter as Tobimar gave an embarrassed wave and shrug. "We've just done what anyone would have," the young Human protested.        "If only it [ Continue reading... ]

Phoenix Rising: Chapter 22

  So Kyri was about to set out with a new, mysterious travelling companion...     -----       Chapter 22.      "Shadestriding," the wizard said, standing on the Great Road, "is a delicate business indeed. For this reason, it is vastly preferred that the one who strides the shades of reality be followed and assisted by those who can watch for the inevitable hazards and both warn of them, and – at least for a time – deal with them."        The head tilted, showing that he was looking at her to verify [ Continue reading... ]

Phoenix Rising: Chapter 21

  Kyri wasn't the sort to wait around after making a decision...     -----       Chapter 21      Kyri turned and looked back, finally unable to keep herself from doing so as the shadows of morning had shortened, shortened, and then begun to lengthen again as they passed to the afternoon. She had been walking all that time, forcing herself not to look.        But just once…        She had come a very long way; the Great Road here was as smooth as a ballroom floor, with just enough added [ Continue reading... ]

Phoenix Rising: Chapter 20

    And now we see a point of view we haven't since the  very beginning...       -----     Chapter 20.        The jungle below was thick and green, breathing with life in the brilliant sunshine. As he watched, a flock of brilliant birds burst from the canopy, pursued for a short distance by a bat-winged shape, a merinam or least dragon, before it grew bored and settled down onto the top of a tree like a giant crimson flower.        It's not working.        Usually Aran came here to … [ Continue reading... ]

Phoenix Rising: Chapter 19

  So Tobimar and Poplock had been looking to arrange a meeting...   ----       Chapter 19.        "Well?" Poplock asked. "Any luck?"        Tobimar grinned, accompanying the smile with a gesture as though handing something to Poplock that meant things had gone well. "We'll be talking to the Adjudicator and Marshal of Hosts T'Oroning'Oltharamnon hGHEK R'arshe Ness by the end of the day. And maybe, if we're lucky, the King himself."        Poplock bounced onto Tobimar's shoulder, which sported solid [ Continue reading... ]

Phoenix Rising: Chapter 18

  So, Kyri and Victoria knew what was going on, but they needed to figure out the next steps...     ----     Chapter 18.      "Victoria? Victoria Vantage, you hellsword, why didn't you tell me you were in the City?"        The booming voice was intimidating enough, but the fact that its owner – an immense Ancient Sauran – then stepped forward and picked up her usually-dignified aunt and swung her around like a child greeted by her favorite uncle left her standing there with her mouth open.        [ Continue reading... ]

Phoenix Rising Chapter 17

  Well, Kyri now had to deal with having learned the truth and being saddled with a terrible responsibility...       ----     Chapter 17. "Auntie Victoria…"   Victoria Vantage spun around at the voice. "Kyri! Good gods above and below, child, you've had us worried half to death!" In the darkness of the night, this far from the City, Aunt Victoria was barely visible as an arrow-straight figure of deeper black. Kyri let the older woman hug her. "Myrionar's Justice, girl, you're shaking! What [ Continue reading... ]

Phoenix Rising: Chapter 16

  And now for one of the crucial turning points of the story...   ---     Chapter 16.        "Oh… my," Kyri finally managed.        Aunt Victoria smiled, looking in the same direction. "I've seen it many times… and never quite gotten used to it." She smiled more widely as even Urelle leaned forward, eyes shining. "Behold the oldest city in the world, built before the Fall itself, in the language of its builders Fanalam' T' ameris' a' u' Zahr-a-Thana T'ikon, Zarathanton, home and throne of the Ancient Saurans [ Continue reading... ]

Phoenix Rising: Chapter 15

  Kyri was now bereaved a second time, though she hsd fought well...     ---     Chapter 15.        Watchland Velion was down off his horse almost before it stopped. "You are still here. Thank the Balance. I was afraid… I had missed you."        Kyri took a breath, watching the Justiciars hard at work loading the coach. They had refused to allow any others to help with that – it was their way of mourning her brother, who was also theirs, she knew. I must answer, she thought, and turned to face the [ Continue reading... ]

Phoenix Rising: Chapter 14

  Time to look back in on Kyri...   -----     Chapter 14.        Kyri stood, indecisive, at the front door. I really should be at the Temple. Still she stood there, unmoving. Something was wrong, and she didn't know what it was.        Rion knew, of course, but he simply wouldn't tell her. He had been strangely… erratic of late. One day he had come home in a grim mood, silent, almost brusque even with Urelle, and retired to his room without a word after dinner. He'd disappeared for three days after that – and [ Continue reading... ]