A world is ravaged by a war of demons and sorcery that no human can combat. Rastehm is on the verge of destruction.
Silverdawn, daughter of Mikkasah, born to the magic.
Mikkasah, King of Rastehm is forced to send his only living child into the unknown future of the 20th century Australia, where she grows to maturity and moves to London with her adopted parents. She has no knowledge of her origins nor that she holds the key to the safety or destruction of both her new world and her old, until one night, she is stalked by a lion and a griffin, and cast into an adventure that will change her life
A dark knight becomes her saviour.
Faren Malaan, Knight of Paladia, is sent forward in time to track and retrieve the Crystal Pyramid. The king's astronomers have learned that the pyramid, which shifts through the portals of time, is cracked. And, if not restored, the sorcerer, Isanti's demons will escape.
Through sheer luck, Istani was not imprisoned by the Goddess, when she created the Crystal Pyramid to banish him and his demon minions. Istani travels through time, taking over the bodies of innocents and casting them aside when he has done with them. But this time he is trapped in the sickly weak body of Peter Waymer. His only escape from the cancer eating away at him is to find the Pyramid, release his demons and have them in turn heal him. With one thought in mind after his release from the body, to wreak destruction upon mankind.
The fate of two worlds rests in the hands of a banished Princess of Rastehm and a Knight of Paladia who combats his own personal demons. They must join forces with three friends to restore the Crystal Pyramid to Deharna, and battle the tormented mind of Iraj who will stop at nothing to gain his prize.
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Double Dragon Publishing
October 15, 2008
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Excerpt from Silverdawn by Julie D'Arcy
First day of Imbolc,
600th Year of the Second Dawning,
In the realm of Rastehm
Imbolc had come, snow fell from the sky, and the Goddess had returned from the Otherworld. Most of the Earth rejoiced. But some did not.
The Eternal Wall, a bastion of fire the width of the temple, leaped high and shadows danced with menace. The Temple of the Goddess was deathly quiet as the nobles and commoners gathered to witness the banishment of their monarch's only child.
Aurelia, Queen of Rastehm, stood on a marble platform before the wall of flame. Her glance strayed to the man at her side, Mikkasah, her husband, the king. Big boned, with iron-colored hair, he had the look of an eagle about him-astute, regal, and uncompromising. A single red dragon emblazoned his tunic and round his shoulders he'd tossed an ebony cloak trimmed with gold. His face was set in harsh lines as he met her gaze with a wan smile.
Aurelia had donned a simple gown of gray. A color of grieving, a color she would wear for many years to come. She clutched her small child to her breast with a determination that burned fiercely within her soul. The child giggled and tugged at Aurelia's hair, oblivious to the tension that permeated the ancient stone walls, and the unshed tears glistening in her mother's eyes.
She stared down into her daughter's chubby face, determined to remember every detail. Her heart swelled with love. Silverdawn-so named for the brilliant new dawn that had appeared after the defeat of the Evil. How she wished they had never fought the demons! How she wished her husband had never summoned the Goddess. If only they had known the consequences-the price they would have to pay.
The Goddess Deharna approached wearing the austere robes of a Temple Priestess, black, trimmed with the color of blood and a single adorning white rose above her heart. Black, red, and white-the colors representative of the three aspects of the Goddess: the Maiden, the Mother, and the Crone-made her pale face appear even more so.
A minor priestess offered Deharna an ornate silver bowl filled with rich earth. To this the Goddess added water from a pitcher of red clay, then held the bowl aloft, chanting the ritual of the four quarters in the ancient tongue of the gods:
Come to us from the Earth's four quarters,
Come Air, Earth, Fire, and Water,
Deliver your minions to this temple,
Undines, Sylphs, Salamanders, and Gnomes,
Ask your kings-Paralda, Nixsa, Ghob, and Djinn,
To bring them in.
The temple doors flew back on their hinges. A gust of wind blew a smattering of snow from the courtyard. The flames of the Eternal Wall leaped higher, and the assembly dropped to their knees in reverence to the Goddess, hugging their cloaks about their bodies. Deharna spoke again. The wind ceased, and the doors slammed shut.
Aurelia held her daughter as the Goddess dipped a finger into the silver bowl and anointed both Mikkasah's and Silverdawn's brows with the sign of the full moon. Then the Goddess slipped a golden medallion the size of a hen's egg over the king's head. "To aid in your trip home," she said, looking knowingly into his eyes.
She turned to Aurelia and held her slender hands out for the child. "'Tis time," she pronounced in a formal tone.
A roar went up from the crowd.
Aurelia shook her head and stumbled back a pace, clutching the child tightly to her breast. The king stayed her with a firm hand.
"No!" Aurelia cried. "You will not take my daughter."
Mikkasah gazed into his queen's eyes and felt a weakening. He loved this woman with all his soul. She was so beautiful, with her fair hair flowing to her waist, petal white skin and her begging, forest-green eyes. Had he been a common man, he would have taken up his sword to fight for the right to keep their child. As a king, he couldnot. He strengthened his resolve and bent his lips close to his wife's ear. "Aurelia, heart of my heart, you knew this day would come. It was only a matter of time before the council learned of the magic she carried."
He reached out and cupped her cheek. "Can you not see that I am bound by chains of honor? Can you not see that my heart breaks? If there were any other course, I would take it, no matter the consequences. Do not forsake me now in my most desperate hour. I am forced by law, the Goddess, and thepeople to do what no man should ever be asked to do. Banish my only child to an unknown future. A future where I cannot hold and protect her as I would wish." His voice took on a soft urgent note. "Do not add to my grief by denying me. This I beg, Aurelia."
Aurelia stood stony-faced, as if his heartfelt plea had never been uttered.
His hand fell to his side. "If you are worried for Silverdawn's safety, do not. I have been through the curtain of flame. I have made provisions. The child will never go without."
"If you walk through that fire with my child, do not come back. For surely as you tear my babe from my arms, my love for you will be wrenched from my heart."
"You do not mean that."
Her jaw hardened. "Do I not?"
With downcast eyes, Mikkasah pried Aurelia's hands from their daughter and took the little girl in his arms. Silverdawn, caught up in the tension, sobbed for the comfort of her mother as Mikkasah stepped into the wall of fire and was swallowed instantly by the dancing flames.
Aurelia's cries filled his ears as the cool fire surrounded him and the child.
Mikkasah glanced back through the filter of flame and watched the Goddess and her priestess drag Aurelia, screaming and fighting, away from the fire. Only the anointed could enter the Eternal Wall. Any other would be burnt to ash.
In another time, thousands of years into the future, Mikkasah stepped from the fire into a strange, beautiful garden beneath an apple blossom tree. A thin man with black and silver hair, gold-rimmed spectacles and suit of charcoal gray met him.
The king lowered his little girl to the ground, knelt beside her, and hugged her to his chest. He looked up at the man. "Be good to my daughter. She is precious to her mother and me. Her name is Silverdawn, which in our time means, 'a new beginning.'"
The man smiled kindly and nodded.
Mikkasah knew Jason Peterson was a man of few words and found it hard to express his feelings over this gift that had been bestowed upon him and his good wife. He was one of the banished and expected nothing. With tears in his eyes, Jason knelt to take the child's hand and tickle her beneath the chin. She laughed, forgetting her tears in the way a child will, and handed him a small crystal pyramid. Mikkasah watched for several moments, his heart breaking all over again, then grasped the golden amulet about his neck and light filled his vision.
Mikkasah stepped through the wall of fire and appeared on the platform where he had left his wife.
The temple was devoid of life.
Aurelia was gone.
He cursed, wrenched the amulet from around his neck and cast it into the wall of fire. He dropped to his knees and wept for the love he had forfeited, and the child he would never see again.
The price for saving his world had been too great.