What’s Next? Author Blog Update

Hello everyone,

 

After the successful launch and sales behind The Cripple and the King, I’m finally ready to announce my next two projects, which I’m hoping to finish a majority of the work on over this school year. I’ve just started Sophomore year so progress might be a bit slow, but I think I’ll have plenty of time to work on both. The first, is the next installment in the fantasy series, The Northern Cycle, which follows a tribe of Hirdlanders, who some of you may remember as some of the antagonists in The Sword to Unite, and their forced recruitment into a foreign war whose outcome could decide the fate of their nation and the entirety of the northern realms. Following the main character Vilsind Layson and his tribe’s interactions with Kaiser Darador, a young king driven by ambition and an unconquerable intellect for politics and war. Vilsind must carefully navigate an intricate web of lies and outrun the past of his father’s cursed name. This is the cover art for the book, created by artist Reza Afshar.

Another project, which I will reveal in a little bit, will be in a new genre and is heavily inspired by the works of Lovecraft and the art of H.R. Giger, and I’m very excited about it!

Thanks for reading!

Peter

The Cripple and the King First Draft is Complete!

Hello everyone just wanted to send out a quick update post for the secoond book, The Cripple and the King, since just today I’ve finished the first draft! I am beyond excited to begin submitting the book for queries and can’t wait to keep my followers up to date on the progress. Check out the book cover and the blurb to see what’s to come in the next few months!

Thanks,

Peter

 

Blurb:

The ancient Nacian Empire is gone, the lion which tamed the world has faded into a hollow shell of its former glory. King Lucan ascends the throne after his brother, Vespasian, is brutally blinded by an unknown enemy and declared incapable of ruling. Lucan is forced to take the heavy burden of the crown he never wanted or asked for, nor the one his father thought he deserved. With the help of Vespasian, Lucan must learn, and quickly, if there is any chance for his rule to last. Along the way, he must conquer enemies both external and internal and take a journey which will show both the greatest goods and darkest evils in the world.

Blog Update: The Second Book

Hello everyone! I just wanted to give a quick post regarding progress on the second book, a project roughly as long in development as The Sword to Unite. The Cripple and King, is currently in the final stages of the manuscript before I move on to editing and querying to agents. I can’t wait to show more of the book to you all, but for now here’s a coat of arms done for the second book by Anna Vasyuk. It depicts the Lion of Nacia, an ancient symbol used by various dynasties who have ruled the Nacian Empire. It is also the heraldry of the main character, Lucan, king of the new Nacian Kingdom and member of the Lavinian Dynasty. I’ve just started a new semester at college, so the blog posts may be a bit more few and far between than usual but I’m hoping to keep everyone’s interest in the second book. Be sure that you’ve checked out The Sword to Unite on Amazon and be sure to like, comment, and subscribe for more content!

-Peter

Lay of the Lore: The Areni Isles

To the southernmost point of Yennen, lay a set of islands known for their beautiful landscape and dark past. The Areni Isles have been the jewel of the southern lands for centuries as a landmark hub for any maritime commerce between the western and eastern halves of the continent. Founded by Bandabras of Barbany, a famous explorer of Lyrielian, or blood of elf and man as it is known. he sought to liberate himself from the shackles of his liege lord and so declared the Areni Isles as an independent kingdom.

Bandabras was a tall man, with a wide frame. His beard was blood red, stretching down to his chest in curls. Revered and despised by the same people, he lived larger than life, filled with ambition and a drive like no other. He set sail for Areni with a host of twenty warships, nearly five thousand men, women, and children followed his promise of a new life.

The islands were populated by a small native population that migrated there centuries ago, whom many scholars believe came from the south of Tanaria, a kingdom closest to the islands. Each island was divided amongst the native people, with no system of unified government. Bandabras was clever, deciding to win them over with diplomacy, rather than steel. At the Summer Isle, he arranged an alliance with the local king, marrying his daughter, Helia Fane. Soon, Bandabras had brought all the islands to heel.

His first actions as king of all of Areni was to assimilate the populations of his Lyrielian allies with the natives, adding the language and codified law systems of Lyriel while keeping the religion, known as Afel, the Lady of the Sea. Bandabras made it a key point to show the power of his people, building massive stone palaces and castle on each island so his legacy could outlast even his dynasty. When it came to his succession, Bandabras committed his greatest mistake, a mistake which haunts Areni to this day. Bandabras legitimized his three bastards, giving them each an island, leaving his trueborn with only the Summer Isle. As he lay dying on his bed, surrounded by sons readying their levies for war, Bandabras supposedly shouted, “to the Strongest!” as his final breath

Bandabran, the only trueborn son, isolated himself on the Summer Isle, shoring up his defenses and taking counsel from his mother Helia, who grew paranoid of plots by the bastards of Bandabras. The Isle of Calto, where the Autumn Palace resides, was taken by Thyngen, strongest and tallest of the brothers, most in appearance like their father. Melos, the island of the Spring Palace, was granted to Arioto, known for his good-natured spirit and diplomacy, born from his father’s affair with a Tanaric courtesan. The Comet, home of the Winter Palace, a dreary place of storms and rocky terrain where little grows, was given to Nasirian the Shadow, given the nickname tauntingly by his brothers for his bitter sulking at feasts and fairs.

Since their inheritance of the islands, the brothers’ descendants have warred with one another for the coveted title of King of Areni, though none have claimed the title, instead, they are locked in stalemates of bloody and costly warfare.

Thanks for reading, and as always, be sure to subscribe for more content!

-Peter

Geladhithel, Last Holdfast of the Silver Elves

With the fall of Glanfech, the first kingdom of the Hlútrian, or the proper name of elvish people, was lost. The elves were divided, many chose to stay close to the ruins of their home, residing in the lake city of Evrand, while others went north towards the woodland realm of Lusani, where a great number of their people already dwelled. A small fraction departed for Antiquii, the ancestral homeland of the elves, where they devolved in technology and culture to a more primitive state, seeking harmony with nature. The fourth group of elves fled to the east, hoping to avoid the senseless brutalities ensuing in the west. Along the eastern coast of Yennen, they settled in the palisade of Geladhithel, which had been a minor border fort until this point.

The eastern elves became known as the Silver Elves, called this by the native men who marveled at their skill of smithing and art, for their steel was well made it appeared as shining silver. The elves built up Geladhithel, turning the earthen mud fort into a stone city with many walls and towers. The royal palace in Geladhithel became known as the Blue Star, for the blue tile which adorned the roofing of the keep. Here, the Kings of Geladhithel rose to power over the lands they had fought and journeyed for, yet they could never surpass the majesty of Glanfech.

In worship, the Silver Elves worship Duwel alone, believing all other gods to only be his cohort of angels and servants, not worthy of prayer. They take their sigil after Duwel's cloud, which supposedly fell over Rohiel, greatest of elven kings, and gave him the knowledge of the world.

Wars with the Dradanians to the north and Silverscale to the south bled the treasury and army. On Lake Fyrk, the Silver Elves had attempted to build a city similar to Evrand, naming it Lirfell, yet the city was burned and left to ruin by a host of Silverscale who sacked the city for its deposits of gold and jewels. After this, nearly a fourth of the Silver Elves population had been lost to war, and finally, the Sky Kings were forced into a peace with a heavy tribute of taxes to Silverscale.

Allied with Nacia for centuries, Geladhithel had begun to regain strength, and have finally paid off their war debts; wealth they intend to win back through martial power or cunning plot.

Dorea, The Masters of the Western Gulf

The Duxy of Dorea stands on two small isles of Nacia, known as Old Pelaga and New Pelaga. With the sigil of a golden seahorse upon a blue shield, they rule through strength and trade. Confined to the sea, their food comes from the ocean, with an impressive fleet of fishing ships able to supply the islands with a steady and wide variety of maritime delicacies. Their power resides in their massive navy, the largest on the eastern half of the world, and their economic connections with the Joint-Kingdom of Menidon across the Gulf of Gilmire, as well as the Merchant Princes of Krivich to the north. Even when Cato, previous King of Nacia, declared war against Krivich, Dorea maintained their trade relations.

In their first years, House Oleri, the lords of Dorea, were a noble family in the original lands of Nacia, on the western side of the continent of Yennen. Their ancestor, Boves the Brave, aided in the taking of the isle where Nacia now stands. Boves snuck into Old Pelaga, which was a thriving trade hub at the time. Disguised as merchants, he and a band of thirty knights, their order is alive today known as The Pelagean Thirty, took control of the city by morning, and handed the keys to Imperator Felix. In exchange, Boves was granted Pelaga as a personal holding, while the Imperator took the rest of the lands and titles.

When the Nacian Empire collapsed, House Oleri saved the royal family and many people of Nacia who had journeyed to the eastern coast. The Imperator’s host was closely followed by an army of barbaric invaders, and it seemed they would be cut down on the beaches. Using their navy at Pelaga, they ran a rescue operation which took only one day, saving nearly two thousand lives. For choosing to save their liege rather than let him die on the coast, they have been considered the most loyal of any vassals to the Kingdom of Nacia.

The current lord, Dux Festus, is an incredibly old man; a renowned warrior in his youth both strong and tall, he is now confined with a cane and cannot wear full armor without the weight overcoming him.

Tritania, the Hidden Gem of Nacia

To the south of Vindorium, capital of the Nacian Kingdom, the Tritanian Peninsula thrives with culture and learning unparalleled to any lordship of the realm. Their sigil in the brown rabbit, representing quick wit and a creature common to their many fields and forests, as well as three mountains, to signify strength and fortitude as well as the three-pronged defense surrounding their city. The sun represents the enlightenment and purity of their folk.

Tritania has always been close to the court of their liege lord, often filling the role of steward, marshal, or close advisor, due to their superb education and gregarious nature. Publius, the current lord of Tritania, serves as Lucan’s steward and sees to the day-to-day running of the kingdom, as well as all foreign affairs. A man shrewd as the rabbit of his pendant, Publius is determined to keep Nacia unified in the face of adversity, which now comes from across the sea.

Publius has a host of loyal knights as well, notable amongst them is Sir Andreas of the Lockedwood, a grizzled war veteran both brave and cunning on the field. He saved Tritania and possibly all of Nacia from a southern invasion which landed in his homeland when he was but a lordling without knighthood to his name. The Merchant Princes of Krivich intended to flank around the south of the isle and march directly to Vindorium, choking the capital from the rest of the nation. They came with five thousand lightning fast lancers, to show their navy was mighty enough to support cavalry. This took their army directly through the Lockedwood in Tritania, where Andreas, in command of only five hundred mounted militiamen, seized the day.

Andreas ordered a chain stretching nearly four hundred yards to be secured deep in the Lockedwood. Andreas then took his detachment of cavalry and rushed forward from the woods, charging directly at the Krivich host. The Princes thought him mad, and so, copied the order to charge. In the moment before the horses broke upon each other, Andreas sounded for retreat and led his men back into the forest. The Krivich horsemen gave chase, but soon lost sight of Andreas’ smaller, more versatile army, but nevertheless, they charged forward at a blazing speed.

The Krivich host charged directly into the chain, sending men flying from their horses who shattered like waves upon rocks as they struck the hard steel. Many fled, while others were pursued by Andreas’ army and slain. Andreas forced the complete removal of Krivich forces of the south and was knighted by the king at that time, Cato, taking the sigil of an oak tree with a golden chain locked around its frame.

 

 

The Joint-Kingdom of Menidon

“Bonds Stronger Than Blood” The words etched on each minted coin from the Dweor holdfasts of the Menidish Mountains. This phrase rings true in the Joint-Kingdom of Menidon which was forged in a time of war and strife, where the survival of two peoples relief solely on their cooperation.

The Dweor of Baraz and the Men of Aradur had always had good terms with one another; the dwarves provided good steel and a steady supply of gold, while the coastal city of Aradur provided a thriving hub for trade in the region. In the later centuries of the SE, long after the collapse of the Nacian Empire, the ducal lords and merchant republics now ruling that land joined arms and sought to wipe out their main trade competitor, the Dweor of Baraz.

An army of some five thousand marched towards the mountain hold, led by a council of bankers and nobles funding the campaign. Immediately, the progress was halted for the remnants of Nacia; harsh weather in the mountains delayed the advance, and supply trains were poorly managed. This gave the Dweor enough time to send emissaries to Aradur, to beg the council of burgomasters to send aid. The council agreed to shelter the Dweor if Baraz fell, but refused any military support, as the fledgling trade city was garrisoned by a small militia which was rather poorly equipped.

Feeling defeated, the Dweor of Baraz fortified their keep and prepared for the worst. When the dukes and merchants arrived, the Dweor seemed doomed, for they had only two thousand volunteers equipped with generation old gear. By miracle, a single councilman, Tybalt the Brazen, arrived with a host of peasants numbering near ten thousand armed with billhooks and spears. Tybalt had resigned from the council in protest of the lack of aid to Baraz and went through the countryside rallying the common folk to his cause.

At the sight of this huge army, the merchant lords broke off their mercenaries, leaving the duke lords with half their strength for the battle. The Dweor rushed from their battlements and joined Tybalt, swiftly routing the diminished army and winning the day.

In retrospect, Tybalt was dubbed the Brazen for two reasons; first, he would have been imprisoned and tried by his own people for taking so many peasants away from the harvest season, which could have starved the country, second, he led an army of sick, old, young, and even some women. Tybalt’s entire army was a bluff, and the enemy fell for his deception. Even with greater numbers, Tybalt lost nearly a sixth of his army in battle, due to their lackluster equipment.

Tybalt returned to Aradur with his and the Dweor army, and strongarmed his way back into the council, swiftly removing his opponents and replacing them with men loyal to his cause. With the new burgomaster council, Tybalt signed the Treaty of Menidon, which combined the two kingdoms into an elective monarchy, of which he won the vote.

Since then, a council of one hundred, fifty Dweor and fifty Men, have elected their kings for life, always ensuring kings are picked by character and not race, though a bag of coins has been known to persuade some councilors.

The Wolf in the Vineyard, House Vandarian

Dating back centuries, House Vandarian has ruled the Vine Marshes of Nacia since their birthing as a cadet house of the imperial family. Stewards and masters of statecraft, the patriarchs of Vandarian are as powerful and ambitious are they are wealthy.

From their palatial home at Laprisil, wine and gold flow from the port, as well as the roads connecting to the other major cities of the isle.  Once their castle was to the western border, though it sunk into the marsh in a severe storm, trapping and killing near half the living member of the family at that time.

Now their leader, Rollo the Bloodless, makes his way to the capital to meet with the newly appointed king, Lucan. Rollo is wise beyond his years and was treasurer to the king’s father, Cato. Rollo’s visit brings both relief and fear, for the memory of Achea is still fresh in the minds of the common folk and nobility alike. A tale few dare speak…

 

Hadrian I “The Great”

The noblest of any rulers of the world, Hadrian was a warrior like a raving berserker, a poet of silver tongue, a statesman with the golden touch, and above all, the founder of the Nacian Empire.

Born the youngest bastard of the Erastrian king Adémar III, Hadrian was never destined for greatness. His father was a terrible ruler, and the last of his line. Adémar sunk his treasury into grand building projects left half complete and wild parties which lasted weeks on end. After his assassination, the very same noblility who killed him were entrusted with his harem of lovers and children. All were slain, save Hadrian and his mother Dulia, a revered figure in Nacian history. Bribing her way through the kingdom with jewelry given by her dead king, she ensured her son’s survival and exceptional education.

By his sixteenth birthday, the young man had amassed a sizable host of mercenaries and courtiers, all while the Erastrian Kingdom collapsed to ash. Hadrian was a bearded man, though he never had the sizable frame of his father. Of average height and size, Hadrian was no less fierce or brave in battle. Hadrian arrived on the southwest of Yennen, where he conquered the small village of Nacia, and declared himself imperator. Hadrian granted new land rights to noble and commoner alike, securing key support for further conquest of the region. A just man, Hadrian also established a codified law which rivaled the bureaucratic level of his ancestors the Erastrians. He completed great works of architecture in his capital, such as a new aqueduct and a new library some thousands of books full. By his death in the year 66 2E, Hadrian was 75 and left a great number of sons to continue his dynasty, which to this day enjoys the title of king in the new Nacian Kingdom.

This is the first in the series describing each of the Nacian Imperators, let me know what you guys think below in the comments and be sure to subscribe!