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ORIGINS (PAPERBACK)

ORIGINS (PAPERBACK)

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*includes a digitally signed, printed author note*

PAPERBACK. SEVENTEEN SERIES BOOK #5 

The gifts bestowed by One not of this world, to the Man who had lived longer than most. The Empire ruled by a King who would swallow the world in his madness. The Warrior who chose to rise against her own kind in order to defeat him.             

Discover the extraordinary beginnings of the Immortals and the unforgettable story of the Princess who would become a Legend.

In a time when sickness covers the world in shadows, Romerus, descendant of the first man and woman to walk the Earth, ventures into the desert to find a cure for his dying sons. The gifts he receives from the mysterious stranger he meets on his crusade turn his children into beings who can defeat death itself, carving a destiny that makes them Immortal kings of an empire spanning hundreds of years and thousands of leagues.  

Mila, third daughter of Crovir and last-born grandchild of Romerus, knows the evil that resides in the heart of her father. When she dares challenge his increasing tyranny by sparing the life of a human governor, his twisted fear of her grows, triggering a chain of events that culminates in her witnessing his final, unforgivable sin. Accused of a crime she did not commit and forced to flee the empire of her birth, her path collides with that of an enigmatic captain who proves to be more than he claims.

As the promise of war darkens the lands, the most powerful and fearless of all the Immortals must shatter old alliances and create fresh ones in order to forge a new destiny for her kin and mankind.

Format  Paperback
Pages  350
ISBN  978-0-9955013-2-4
Dimensions  5.5 x 0.79 x 8.5 inches
Publisher   Silver Orb Publishing
Language  English
Edition  Fourth Edition, February 2024

SHIPPING INFORMATION

Print books are printed individually to order and shipped through our independent printing partner, Bookvault. Shipping rates, taxes if eligible, and delivery times will vary depending on your country, delivery address, and shipping method.

It usually takes a few days to print your order and then 3-5 days to ship in the UK, and 5-21 days to the US and elsewhere. You can track the shipping with the link in your order. 

READING ORDER

SEVENTEEN NOVELS & SHORT STORIES
Hunted (Book 1)
First Death (Short Story 1)
Dancing Blades (Short Story 2)
The Meeting (Short Story 3)
Warrior (Book 2)
The Warrior Monk (Short Story 4)
Empire (Book 3)
The Hunger (Short Story 5)
Legacy (Book 4)
The Bank Job (Short Story 6)
Origins (Book 5)
Destiny (Book 6)

READ A SAMPLE

‘In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the Angel of his presence saved them; in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; and he bare them, and carried them all the days of old.’ Isaiah 63:9

3750 BC

The man gazed at the fiery sun blazing down upon him and the desert all around. At the edge of the horizon, sky and land merged, palest blue and whitest sand twisting in a rippling mirage that threatened to engulf the entire world. He wiped his brow and took another step, the staff at his side aiding his laborious trek across the shifting ground.

Seven days and six nights had passed since he left his village in search of a cure for his dying children. He had travelled east, as advised by the Elder who had spoken of a place where he could find salvation. A mountain lost in the wilderness, known to few and treacherous to reach. And inside the deepest, darkest cave within this forbidding mass of rock, a spring whose waters were said to be endowed with the power to cure all.

The Elder's words were ignored by most of the villagers, who chose only to see an old fool whose mind was lost to time and age. Even when disease befell the surrounding settlements and burning pyres darkened the sky, none believed his words. But when illness crossed his doorstep and started slowly killing his children, the man who had lived for longer than most went to the Elder to find out more. For no prayer or sacrifice could sway the sickness that had darkened the land from east to west, a plague borne on the wind that few escaped, an illness unlike anything he had seen in his extended life.

And so, four days after his sons collapsed from the fever ravaging their young bodies, and two days more after they fell into a slumber so deep none could rouse them, the man bade his wives goodbye and set off on a perilous journey from which he knew there might be no return.

This thought never deterred him, for he had faith. Faith that he would find a way, somehow. Faith that his sons would be cured. Faith that there had to be a reason for this plague and that time would tell what that reason was.

Into the desert he walked, one lone man, his father’s staff at his side and a goat-skin sack across his back. Inside the sack were water-filled gourds made from sheep's bladders, dried fruit, bread, and a blanket.

The first three days passed without event, the landscape devoid of any threat bar the blazing heat and the cold nights. But as the mountains to the north faded into nothingness and he entered the true desert, the man discovered he had been lulled into a false sense of security. Soon, dunes as tall as twenty men soared in his path and vicious sandstorms whipped at his skin and clothes, slowing his progress and sapping his energy. When darkness fell and a wintry cold pricked his skin, the calls of creatures he could not see kept him awake for most of the night. Serpents and scorpions proved to be yet another, more silent threat. To pause in the shade of a rock or sit under an acacia tree meant tempting their deadly bites and stings.

As dusk descended upon his seventh day in the desert, the man discovered he was down to half a gourd of water. He had come across a shallow, dry streambed two nights previously, close to some rocks where grass and a handful of spiny shrubs grew. An hour of painstaking digging had unearthed a shallow pocket of water deep beneath the sand. The next day, he had saved his rations further by drinking from the fat leaves he had picked off the plants, which were heavy with a thick, bitter fluid that went some way toward quenching his thirst. He was also running low on food, a fact reflected in his increasingly weakened state.

When darkness fell, a full moon rose to the east and bathed the desert in an eerie light. The man stopped for a moment, startled by the sight. He had not expected the moon to be so plump and bright for another five days. Puzzled, he counted slowly on his fingers. His gaze shifted back to the white disc in the star-speckled sky. There was no doubt in his mind. Unless he had lost time in the desert he was unaware of, this was an unusual phenomenon indeed.

All thoughts of the moon were wiped away by the wave of lassitude that suddenly washed over him. He swayed where he stood. Shadows rose from the ground some fifty feet to his right. He stumbled over and discovered a clump of trees and shrubs. A scattering of dead branches and twigs lay on the ground. It was as good a place as any to stop for the night. He collected kindling and soon had a meager fire going.

* * *

It was the growling that woke him. Deep and feral, the sounds reverberated through his bones and roused him from the heavy slumber that had claimed him. He bolted upright, heart pounding in his chest and sweat drenching his skin despite the coolness of the night. For a moment, he thought he had dreamt the noise. It came again, low and guttural. A shiver danced down his spine, scattering the last of his fatigue. He peered into the dark and tried to see which direction the threatening sounds had come from.

A short distance behind him, something blocked out the lower section of the sky. It was a sand dune. A roar suddenly shattered the air, bringing him unsteadily to his feet.

There was little doubt in his mind that whatever was making that noise lay behind the shadowy ridge.

The fire had died down. The man threw more kindling upon it and lit the stoutest branch he could find. He hesitated, debating his choices. He could either walk out into the night, away from whatever danger lay behind him, or he could try to scare it away, whatever it proved to be.

The fact that traversing the land would be doubly perilous in the dark sealed his fate. He could also only go so far before weakness got the better of him. So the man gripped the flame torch and his walking stick and headed for the sand dune.

The ridge grew in stature the closer he got. By the time he reached the base, it rose some fifteen feet tall, curving away at the edges. He pondered his approach. Height would be an advantage against whatever he would face on the other side. He started to climb.

The sand shifted languorously beneath his sandals, wrapping around his legs almost to mid-calf in deceptively smooth sinkholes eager to halt his every step. He grunted and forged ahead, his determination growing, the torch throwing his shadow across his rapidly filling footprints. He knew he was wasting the last of his energy making undue haste, but he wanted whatever was going to happen over and done with.

He reached the summit of the dune and gasped at the sight that met his eyes.

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