Thanks for hosting me today, Jessica. I’m celebrating the release of Bringer of Chaos: Forged in Fire the second book in my science fiction Bringer of Chaos series.
Bringer of Chaos: the Origin of Pietas (the first book) poured out so fast and furious I could hardly keep up. I was afraid the next book would be harder to write, and it was — at first — but once I got started, Forged in Fire was the same way. The story streamed onto the page.
It’s satisfying to have a story come alive and see it become a living, breathing entity. Writing a book is like giving birth in that sense. No wonder authors want to talk about their stories! Ask any mom about her kids and you’ll get an earful. All we need is a break in the conversation and out come the pictures. Speaking of which, have you seen my latest banner? *smile*
In this scene from Bringer of Chaos: Forged in Fire, the immortal king, Pietas, is surveying the alien world where he’s been exiled. Sempervia is a beautiful planet, but it’s not fully terraformed and it harbors dark secrets of its own…
Sempervia, year 1 in exile
Pietas pushed further up the mountain, where hand over hand, he climbed up among black boulders. Their pockmarked texture stung his palms but did no harm to his feet. He’d hiked half the planet barefoot. Panting from the quick exertion, he turned to take in the view. The summit lay a good distance ahead, but they had left the forest. Scant grasses and scrubby bushes dotted the landscape.
Across plains to the east, low-scudding clouds skimmed a fringe of mountains, no more than blue smudges on the horizon. Their white tips implied great height. North, the lazy river he and the human had followed from its source snaked its way across the savannah, a necklace of shimmering gold. The path took seconds to trace with his gaze but had taken them weeks to walk. As it wended its way further south, the confluence of its mighty waters with another river turned its gold to muddy brown.
What worried him were the sheets of gray in the northwest. A storm marched straight toward them. The heavy, pelting rain on Sempervia so saturated the air one could drown on land.
They did not dare let it catch them in the open. They needed to cross the summit and reach shelter.
He braced both hands on his knees. How galling to need a break. He’d hiked less than five hours. Was he no better than a mortal?
Before his exile, Pietas would have run–not walked–up this mountain without a single pause. When mortals and traitors among his kind imprisoned him in an unpowered life pod and left him to rot for over a year, it broke his health and shattered his stamina.
Had it not been for his friend, Six, what sanity Pietas possessed would have been as beaten and battered as dirt clods trampled in a horse paddock. Though unable to free Pietas, Six had stayed with him day and night, talking, whistling, singing songs, sharing life and light through his tales.
Long after Pietas could no longer respond.
Broken in body as he was, his will, determination, and drive survived intact, as had his undying thirst for revenge.
No doubt his enemies thought to teach him a lesson. Having endured the worst they could muster, he’d learned there was no pain he could not bear, no matter how horrific. One day, he’d return the favor and teach them.
Down the mountain, his sister, Dessy, staggered into the sunshine. An equally unsteady Joss stumbled after her. The two female immortals plopped onto the ground with all the grace of drunken gazelles.
Behind them came the twins, Armand and Philippe, their massive height and girth impressive even from above. Armand squatted beside Dessy while his twin remained standing, alert and on watch.
Last to reach sunlight was Six, the ghost.
Not a phantom or aetheric creature, but a member of Ghost Corps. A human who’d died and been resurrected by infusing his body with Ultra blood. Transformed into a quasi-immortal with enough strength to perma-kill Pietas or another immortal. And ironically, the closest friend Pietas had ever had in his entire unceasing, solitary life.
Without slowing his pace, Six skirted around Philippe, trudged up the hill toward Pietas and joined him atop the rocks. He, too, shielded his eyes.
He’d grown lean and ragged over the weeks they’d hiked the planet. Both of them had. No matter how much fish they caught, or what wild fruits they found, there was not enough to gain weight. Like Pietas, Six had no beard, a result of his transformation. His naturally brown skin had grown browner while they tramped in the sun. His dark hair had grown at a human pace and curled over his ears.
Pietas, who could not tan or sunburn, had grown blonder. He’d cut his hair not long after their arrival on Sempervia, but already, it hung halfway down his back. He wore it tied behind him to keep it out of his face.
“Pi, look at this view!”
The nickname irked. He’d asked Six to drop it, to no avail. Pee-ah-toss, he ranted in silence. Not Pi. Pee-ah-toss.
“I can hear you thinking. You know that, right?”
Then you know what I’m thinking now.
“Same to you, Ultra. Besides, you call me Six. I call you Pi. Suits you.”
“Six is an integer. Pi is an irrational number.”
The man shot him a smile. “Like I said.”
FORGED IN FIRE
by Kayelle Allen
Marooned on a barren world with no food and few survival tools, Pietas knows it could be worse. He could be alone. But that’s the problem. He’s not.
Half a million of his people sleep in cryostasis, trapped in their pods and it’s up to Pietas to save them. But before he can, he must take back command from a ruthless enemy he’s fought for centuries. His brutal, merciless father.
Immortals may heal, but a wound of the heart lasts forever…
The book releases Dec 29th, exclusively on Amazon.
(Free on Kindle Unlimited)
Kayelle Allen writes Sci Fi with misbehaving robots, mythic heroes, role playing immortal gamers, and warriors who purr. She’s a US Navy veteran who’s been married so long she’s tenured.
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