So, without further ado, here is the first half of an excerpt from The Kassul...
The dark spires of the towering castle looked like small needles pricking into the grey, cloud-like vapors far overhead. Though not impressive in perimeter, the ominous structure made up for its lack of ground cover with its height, so that Lemit Vydin had to strain to see the eroding overhangs of the highest tower.Even from a distance, the abandoned castle had appeared neglected. Now, Lemit’s dark sapphire eyes quickly surveyed rotting window frames where jagged pieces of stained glass still remained, vines climbing black stone walls, and tangled weeds overgrowing the fenced-off yard surrounding the disconcerting building.All in all it was not a place he would have chosen to explore if given the choice.“You’re sure she went in there?” he asked of the short creature standing to his left, making no effort to conceal his annoyance.The purple-fur-covered Quyd had found Lemit in Trader’s Square, close to the south-eastern outskirts of Zhoahlon, and had interrupted Lemit in the middle of a deal he was going over with a potential client. It was hard enough to find work in the half-decrepit city of Zhoahlon, residing in an enormous cavern – known as Lyzhin – almost ten miles beneath the northern icecaps of Arn, without a furry little maniac biting the first customer that came to call.Ignoring Lemit’s frustration, the four-foot Quyd nodded vigorously. “Yup, I warned ‘er and tried to stop ‘er. But she juss ignored me an’ went righ’ on in.” The small man looped his thumbs in his belt and let his shoulders droop slightly as he wrinkled his black, animal-like nose in thought. “She seemed kinda distant actually – juss starin’ ahead a’ the doors as if somethin’ was callin’ to ‘er.”Li’neen, Lemit’s sister, was the girl in question. A voracious reader fascinated by all things involving nayrl and history, she helped him with some of his jobs whenever they involved an inordinate amount of research. That very morning Li’neen had told him that she had found something interesting in the Great Archives and was going to investigate an ancient structure still standing about half a mile out in the dusty plain of Lyzhin.“Yeah, that’ll be her insatiable curiosity,” Lemit said, shaking his head and resting his hand against the grip of the disyldon holstered on his right thigh.“Insatiable curiosity or not, can’t your sister read?”Lemit turned to Zholin, who stood at the gate next to a sign inscribed with Zhue-orlzin and Veerzhun runes.“And, if not written messages, then at least between the lines?” The young Veerzhun man lifted an arm to indicate the sign and then the castle as he spoke, his heavy tabard-like cape parting at the front to allow him to do so. The shin-length cape, woven of strands of a dark blue ore known as nowlrik, marked him as a Jenoce of the Jezhoaldun; though, contrary to tradition, Zholin wore it with the top few buckles unfastened so that the whole of his young face could be seen, framed handsomely by black hair that glistened with a silver-blue sparkle even in the dull light of Lyzhin.“Well that depends.” Lemit paused as he stepped over to join the Jenoce by the sign. “What kind of writing are we talking about?”. . . . .
(Announcer's Voice: "Tune in next week to find out more!" ........ okay, yeah, that'd just be cheesy :P :)
I'll be posting the rest of this chapter next week, but bring on the comments/questions if you have any - I'd love to know what you think!
Have a great week! :D