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Thursday, November 22, 2012

Book Excerpt: The Sword of Solonus

Posted by Charlene // Tags: , ,
The Sword of Solonus
by Adam Matthews

Plot summary:

Human life is a struggle in the medieval kingdom of Orenelle, and the high elves promise King Ceron and his people an escape from this struggle. Only by embracing the Light of the Elwan, (the forest spirit and life force of the elves) will the population achieve everlasting life- whilst leaving behind famine, disease, and death. When the day of salvation arrives, mankind will undergo a metamorphosis and will join the high elves to live in the sacred woodland paradise of Sera Norem, but at what cost?

Only a few dare to question the real implications of elvish immortality, but among them is the king’s sixteen-year-old son, Prince Cebril. Young, curious, and impatient, Cebril yearns to explore life outside the palace walls… and outside of the Elwan Faith.

When the prince is exiled due to circumstances beyond his control, his prayer for freedom is answered. With nothing but a broken compass and his soul to guide him, Cebril starts out on a quest of self-discovery; a far ranging journey that will reveal the true nature of man’s heralded transcendence, the value of love, and the perils of war.

Cebril’s travels will inexorably lead him to uncover a powerful weapon… a legendary sword with the power to change his fate and his world- the Sword of Solonus.


The New Year’s festival in the capital city of Kelal was in full swing, but Prince Cebril Lionlight, heir to the throne of Orenelle, didn’t feel like marching in the Royal Procession. In order to leave the castle unseen, Cebril needed a convincing disguise. He called outside his room for a page and requested the trappings of a well-fetcher. The job of a fetcher was to fill buckets of water from the well house in the Palace courtyard. A well-fetcher’s robes were hooded and priestly, as if to attribute some higher meaning to a mundane but necessary task.

Cebril slipped the hood over his head and looked down at the ground in a contemplative manner to hide his face. He locked his fingers together in a meditative position so he wouldn’t be questioned when leaving the Palace. He made his way to the eastern gate unrecognized, and started on the short cobble stone road toward Kelal.

The road to the city was lined with townspeople waiting to get a first glimpse of the king’s wagon as it emerged from the Palace gates. Interspersed among them were the beggars and street gamblers, looking to scam the more fortunate. Cebril, however, knew that he was in little danger. It was rare that well-fetchers were accosted for money, as their only possession was water.

Cebril arrived in the center of the city ahead of the Procession, and rested for a moment on the marble steps of the Three Trees Monument. As the prince sat down, three stone trees– an evergreen, a weeping willow, and a redwood, towered over his back. He sat against the trunks, and used the shade to further shield his face from curious onlookers.

A breeze blanketed the town square, and Cebril felt refreshed as the cool air hit his face. He looked around at all the craft shops, which made up the tapestry of daily living. Artisans and merchants all worked at their trades in earnest. Their wooden storefronts were built close together, with second story tenements protruding out over narrow streets. The cramped layout of the city was a far cry from the marble spires, stone keeps, and sprawling gardens comprising the Royal Palace. Still, Cebril enjoyed the feeling of anonymity that only crowded spaces could provide.

The prince took full account of what he saw. In Kelal, trade knowledge was passed down from father to son, and occasionally through an apprenticeship to someone outside the family. Tradition was important, especially when it came to the time honored religious tenets bestowed upon men by the high elves.

As Cebril watched the tradesmen toil to make ends meet, he imagined for a few minutes that he was one of them. He didn’t wish for a life of manual labor, but he envied the tradesmen’s independence, and the pride they took in their work. Observing them led him to fantasize about shaping his own destiny.

Unfortunately, Cebril’s dreams chafed hard against the high expectations placed upon him by the Royal Family and the clergy. He knew that as a future king, he’d be encouraged to foster religious conviction in his subjects. This troubled the prince greatly, as he wasn’t a true believer in the Elwan Religion.

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