Exiles on the run. Divine rulers fighting to control the desert’s elements. Dead people secretly walking the sands in search of redemption…
Sand of Bone is the first of two (maybe three…?) novels set in the desert world of SheyKhala. A new chapter will be posted every Thursday until the novel’s publication in the summer of 2013.
To start with Chapter 1, click here.
Commander Pyrius, once the most respected Blade commander in SheyKhala, rode an old and feeble horse across the barren landscape that surrounded Exile Stronghold. The wind shifted as the sun slid beneath the sands, its sudden chill making Pyrius shiver. Within a month, the night air would be cold enough to bite through leather. Tonight, he knew, it would merely set his joints to aching.
Pyrius’s nightsight adjusted after a few rapid blinks, washing the landscape of color in exchange for sharp clarity in an infinite palette of deep gray and soft silver. He’d once spent hours staring at the night and concocting metaphors that could let Shella “see” the beauty those with nightsight took for granted. His attempts at poetry always sounded better in his thoughts than when he spoke them aloud, but Shella claimed to love them all. Then she’d take hold of his arms and pull him close, matching her lips to his until nightsight didn’t matter and the only beauty that existed was held within his arms.
He let the horse amble along the ridgetop road to Exile, where Blades were dumped onto the dirt, and had to choose to struggle onward or lie down to die. Over a year had passed since he’d found the last exile, and nearly two years since the bloodkin had recalled an exile home. But he still rode out every dawn and every dusk, and the exiles still looked at him in expectation when he returned. Were it not for Velshaan Syrina, who spent most all her time in the little tower chamber she’d claimed her first night, Pyrius might believe Exile Stronghold–his meager command of twenty-six outcast Blades–had been completely and deliberately forgotten.
Then Pyrius glimpsed movement, a long shadow creeping through the eroded gully below. Continue reading Sand of Bone – Chapter 5