Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

0
Free copy left
You can read our best books
Brenden Dean would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

Tales of Lephoria - Blood and Water

By Brenden Dean All Rights Reserved ©

Action / Fantasy

Chapter 1

“Serriph?! What kind of weak-ass name is that?”

The bandit laughs, holding the massive, curved blade at his side. There’s not a scratch on him. His leather outfit is completely unscathed, save for the traces of mud on his boots.

“Shoulda’ stayed home, Serriph.” He mocks me, twirling the blade in my direction with ease.

I pick myself up from the ground, coughing as my side cramps up. I’m hurt. A few ribs probably broken. There is a bloody, metal taste in my mouth. I’m lucky he hasn’t stabbed me yet, but the beating I took was painful enough.

I realize both my hands are empty, and my eyes quickly dart about looking for my most valuable possession.

“Lookin’ for somethin’?” I can almost hear him smiling. I look up, and the bastard is nodding toward his left.

Lying against a tree is my silver-blue dagger, Mistform.

Not good.

Save for his occasional laugh, the forest is eerily silent. Since our battle started, I haven’t heard the chirp of insects, the songs of birds, nor the distant calls of animals. Maybe the animals were wise enough to flee, but I’m not. I started this fight, and I’m going to finish it. At the moment, though, all I can think about is how this bandit is going to kill me. But he’s just walking back and forth, dragging the huge scimitar along the ground and taunting me. Arrogant bastard.

At least it buys me a few seconds.

I try to tighten my defense, but every step is painful. My light, steel armor feels heavier than it ever has. I want to pull it off, throw it on the ground. But, whether I like it or not, it’s protecting me.

Somewhat.

“Stupid kid.“ His smile lowers a bit, “What the hell did I ever do to you?”

“The hell kind of question is that!?” The words force their way out of me.

He looks surprised, both his eyes and smile widening.

“You murderer! You coward! You kill just to raise your fasste!” My face feels hot, and I can feel my nails digging into my palms. “Fasseteer trash. You deserve to die!”

Now, his smile is gone. His knuckles turn stark white as his grip tightens on the scimitar.

“What’d you say, boy?” He points the blade at me. “You say you’re gonna kill me? Don’t make me laugh!”

“Laugh?” I lower my head. I can feel tears welling up in my eyes. “I’m sure you laughed when you killed them.”

“What? Killed who? I’ve killed dozens of people, boy!” He says it so proudly. I want to vomit.

“You know damn well what I’m talking about!” I yell.

Birds that had been keeping quiet in the canopy above suddenly burst from their cover. A few squawked their curses before the forest fell silent once more.

The bandit stepped toward me. “Well, if you won’t tell me, I guess I’ll just jog my memory.”

He began counting on his fingers, weapon resting on his leather shoulder pad.

“There’s Fuchsia, that small town to the West of here. We burnt it down real good.” He licked his lips. “The women there were gorgeous!

Then there was Surren, that horrid desert town on the other side of the Labyrinth of Valleys. We didn’t find shit there.”

The man spits on the ground. My skin crawls at his words. Every syllable makes my stomach turn. Sweat runs down my cheek as my whole body trembles.

“Oh, and can’t forget Kyre!”

I nearly fall to my knees when he says it.

“That pretty little village buried in snow. That didn’t keep it from burning to cinders! And the people - so many to kill. So much fassence to-“

“Shut your mouth!” I scream.

“Ah, I see. So you’re from Kyre?” He laughs that stupid laugh once more. “Guess you got nowhere to go now, do ya?!”

I charge him, the needle in my pocket tight in my fist. I flick its protective cap off with my thumb. I don’t want to hear another word.

I am going to kill him.

“Shut your mou-!”

I don’t see it, but I feel something hard on my stomach. It hurts. My feet fly out from under me as I’m sent flying through the air.

My vision goes black for a moment as I slam into something hard. Something rough. I cough hard, laying my head on the rough bark of a tree behind me. Slowly, my breath returns, and I peer ahead to lock eyes with the bandit again.

Just seconds ago, I had been inches from him, ready to stab him with that needle. Now, he’s several meters ahead of me, and I’m lying against a tree racked with pain. He must’ve punched me. I didn’t expect him to have this much power.

I caught word of a bandit who resided in the Atoll Forest while on the road. Travelers said someone had been robbing caravans during the night. Said he looked like a Fasseteer. Said he wore the insignia of Bones and Ash.

That’s when I knew I had found one, that I had crossed paths with another one of my targets. He was definitely one of the bandits that had destroyed my home.

Kyre. . .

“Nice try, boy.” He turns away from me. As he parts the hair covering his neck, I can see a symbol. It’s his Fasste.

And it reads 37 Gamma.

No wonder I’m sitting under this tree nearly paralyzed. He’s at least 37 times stronger than I am. I’m lucky I’m not dead yet. Especially considering I was born with the lowest recorded Fasste – A measly one Gamma.

I cough again. Blood flies from my mouth, and my ribs ache. I’m injured badly. This fight needs to end. Someone needs to die.

 “Look, boy, I don’t feel like killin’ today. Just go home.” He lowers his sword. The tip hits the ground, slicing through it as if it were paper. “I’ll be takin’ that knife with me, though.”

No, he can’t take Mistform. Even if he leaves me here, alive but injured, I’ll be helpless without it. And like hell am I letting him live another day. I can’t let him hurt anyone anymore.

“Y-you better kill me.” I barely manage to say, but he hears it.

“Huh? And why’s that?”

“Cause’, if you don’t, “ I wipe my mouth of blood and force a smile on my face, “I’ll hunt you down and kill you.”

He frowns. “Well, I can’t have you annoying me anymore than you are now. Sorry kid. Guess you die today.”

The weight of his blade is palpable as he lets it fall from his shoulder and onto the ground. Dirt is tossed into the air, forming a small cloud around his feet.

In an instant, he races toward me. Before I know it, I am raised in the air by the collar of my shirt. I keep my arms limp. The pain is overwhelming, my bones shuffling into excruciating positions. It is difficult to breathe.

“I’ll make an exception for ya’. I’ll kill you quick. You’re a stubborn kid, and you remind me a bit of myself.”

Like him? Never have I heard something so wrong, so dreadful. My eyes widen in sheer indignation, and I thrust my hand out of my pocket with the last ounce of strength in me.

The moment it enters him, his expression changes. His eyes are as large as the moons, and his mouth opens in a gape. He gasps for air until his grip on me relents.

I fall back to the trunk of the tree hard. It stings, but I’m happy.

The bandit is on the ground now, grabbing at his throat as the poison from the needle forces it to close. I watch, but the happiness leaves me. In its place, a familiar emotion returns. My eyes flood over, and the tears quickly cover my cheeks. The feeling in my throat as I try to hold it back hurts. I cannot understand why the pain remains, even though I am one step closer to my goal.

This was the third, and most difficult, Fasseteer I’ve killed. All had the same Ash and Bones symbol on them, but the one on the ground before me had been the only one I hadn’t gotten the drop on. And I almost died for it.

He has stopped moving, and a familiar glow surrounds him. A steadily strengthening white glow. Then, the wisps of fassence ascend from his body and illuminate the air. The forest, though in twilight, glows white with their radiance. They begin to come toward me, and, as they do, I can’t help but hope that part of this fassence once belonged to my father, my mother, or maybe my brother.

“This is for you.” I can only whisper as my vision fades to white.


Write a Review Did you enjoy my story? Please let me know what you think by leaving a review! Thanks, Brenden Dean
Continue Reading
Further Recommendations

ElNachoWOTC: The grammar is tight and easy too read while packing a great vocabulary and you use a lot of vivid imagery with your words. One of the biggest things I noticed right away is the gritty realism you managed to cram into this book while going into a lot of exotic fantasy material. Including issue...

Dru83: This is a great story, mainly because of the uniqueness and variety of the characters. There's also several mini story lines occurring underneath the main plot. Some of the plot twists towards the end are unexpected and twist at your heart strings a bit. The punctuation and grammar could use some...

John Smith: This is what Sci Fi is all about. Reads like early Heinlein. In the style of Space Cadets. No esoteric problems..but good ol blaster and space action with a host of relatable characters

Yellow: If you are looking for something original try Evening Goddess. Karina takes you on an adventure filled with tragedy and dangerous situations. The mixture of a serious plot and sexual situations keep you reading to discover what challenges she will face next. The novel will make you laugh, cry...

Tiffany Thomson: This story is not something I would normally pick up and read but I'm so glad I did, I wasn't able to put it down and my husband was yelling at me at 3am to put it down and go to bed (just waited for him to doze back off before picking it back up) I really hope Natalie brings out another book eit...

263Adder: Okay so I adore this story. I only knocked one star off plot for historical inaccuracies because I'm a bit of a stickler for that. The ending broke my heart though, considering you already changed history couldn't you (SPOILER) change it a bit more and have them together!!!! I want an alternative...

ernbelle: When I first started this story I was a little unsettled by all of the information that appears in the prologue, and wasn't sure if I would continue. However, I am very glad I did. The plot was very well thought out and really interesting. There were not any page breaks or markers to acknowledge ...

Felisa Yoder Osburn: I really enjoyed the story. Civil War stories are some of my favorites and the intertwining of the past with current times was wonderful. I look forward to reading the next stories.

Lauren Suzmeyan-Raine: I'm so glad you found a place to post your stories. I was horrified when I saw yours had been taken down, they are definitely the best 'reading' stories I've ever read. And I've made it my business to read every one I can. Well done.Lauren

More Recommendations

europeanlove: I gotta hand it to you. I love reading. I read books everyday. When the book is good I can read it in probably 13 hours. Your story was amazing. Great prose, very imaginative. Incredible dialogue. I am deeply impressed. Keep it up.

dragonswilleise: I loved this book, it was nearly impossible to put down from start to finish. It was fast passed without being overwhelming and slowed down where needed. Overall this was an amazing novel that I will definitely recommend to others.

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral stories!
King's Lament

FreakyPoet: "you made me laugh, made me cry, both are hard to do. I spent most of the night reading your story, captivated. This is why you get full stars from me. Thanks for the great story!"

The Cyneweard

Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral story!
Spectra

Ro-Ange Olson: "Loved it and couldn't put it down. I really hope there is a sequel. Well written and the plot really moves forward."