The Sceptre of Morgulan
by Matthew D. Ryan
Coragan of Esperia has another job to do. Can he and his companions capture the Sceptre of Morgulan and prevent an apocalypse? Or will Korina outmaneuver them again and escape with the prize? So much hinges on the efforts of so few—if they fail in their quest, if the evil witch Korina the Black succeeds, she may gain an unrivaled power over the forces of darkness; a power she will not hesitate to use.
Silgaren had just set, leaving only Neerie and its cracked surface to look over the land, shedding a pale yellow light that, at times, was obscured by passing clouds. Nevertheless, Galladrin took no chances. He approached the count’s castle from the east, where the shadows lay the strongest. It was nearly midnight. Most of the castle’s inhabitants lay asleep in bed. And Galladrin was alone.
Gaelan had protested vehemently. The young man wanted to help, but Galladrin knew what he was capable of. This was not a night for sword-fighting. Far from it. Only a thief, a well-trained thief, had any hope of success.
He wore black clothing, of course, with charcoal on his cheeks and forehead. He stood on the far side of the road that encircled the fortress, hidden by the shadows of a nearby building. Watching, and counting softly to himself as the guards atop the parapet did their rounds, he waited for the opportune moment.
Like a wraith borne by the dark of night, he ran from cover, across the road in a heartbeat, across the field on the other side. He drew to a stop before the moat and looked up at the wall just as another guard came around the bend. Quickly and quietly, he lowered himself into the moat water.
It was still early spring, so the moat water was cold. Deadly cold. It numbed his hands, his feet; it made breathing difficult, like he could not get enough air. Ignoring its gelid touch, he submerged himself
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Matthew D. Ryan is a published author living in upstate New York on the shores of Lake Champlain. His work has been featured on-line at Aphelion.com and YesteryearFiction.com. He has been deeply involved in the fantasy genre for most of his life as a reader, writer, and game designer. He is the operator of the web-site matthewdryan.com which features his blog, “A Toast to Dragons,” a blog dedicated to fantasy literature, and, to a lesser extent, sci-fi. Mr. Ryan says he receives his inspiration from his many years as an avid role-player and fantasy book reader. He has spent many long hours devising adventures and story-lines as well as gaming systems for role-playing games, playing a motley assortment of characters in RPG worlds, as well as digesting the writings of J.R.R. Tolkien, Robert Jordan, and others. As a result, he has great depth of experience in the fantasy genre and feels it was a natural shift for him to move into fantasy writing.
Mr. Ryan is the author of the exciting dark fantasy novel, Drasmyr, The Children of Lubrochius, and The Sceptre of Morgulan, as well as a growing number of short stories. His first novel, Drasmyr, won the book of the month award on Long and Short Reviews: Young Adult for the month of September 2012. The story features a traditional Dracula type vampire in a Middle-Earth type setting. It is a dark fantasy geared toward teens and adults that has consistently earned reviews in the four and five star range. Drasmyr serves as the prequel to his series: From the Ashes of Ruin. In addition to Drasmyr, The Children of Lubrochius, and The Sceptre of Morgulan, Mr. Ryan has published several short stories on-line, including: “Haladryn and the Minotaur”(published at the now defunct Pegasus On-line), “The River’s Eye”(published at YesteryearFiction.com) , “Escape”(published at Aphelion.com), and the three-story collection Of Dragons, Love, and Poison.. He has also spoken on the topic of “World-Building” utilizing his considerable experience as an author and game-designer. When not engrossed in his fantasy worlds, Mr. Ryan can be found volunteering at the local food shelf or playing with his cat, “Confucius,” who is as wise and wily as his name suggests.
Author’s Smashwords Page: http://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/matthewdryan
Author’s Blog: http://www.atoasttodragons.com
Author’s Home Page: http://www.matthewdryan.com
Author’s Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/MatthewDRyanAuthor
Author’s Amazon Page: http://www.amazon.com/author/matthewdryan
Author’s Goodreads Page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/579148.Matthew_D_Ryan
Author’s Twitter Handle: @MatthewDRyan1
For specific details on Mr. Ryan’s previous novels from this series, follow the corresponding links:
The Children of Lubrochius: http://wp.me/P3Lbq0-gM
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