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Book 1: Wanderer

By Stephanie F. All Rights Reserved ©

Other / Fantasy

Chapter 1

Her uneasiness grew with each slow step towards the gray walls that protected humanity’s one true sanctuary: Angel’s Keep. The city was the biggest congregation of humanity, numbering in the thousands when she had last been here a half-year ago. Those gray walls, taller than the old willows on the Star River, were supposed to signal safety. Only within those walls were humans guaranteed safety from the vampires.

To her it was worse than staring down mountainous gray-green thunder clouds that were so close to the land they could be touched. Ignoring the angel courier fluttering around her head, she stopped on the edges of the forest. She was in deep enough to be hidden from the guards on the wall but close enough to see the guards’ silhouettes. Behind her the sun rose and the deep gold of the rays told her it would be a rare, truly sunny day.

She watched the sun rise and saw the glimmer of the glory of Angel’s Keep: the Angel’s Cathedral. The massive building glimmered with pale golden light. The Cathedral wasn’t just the place of worship; it was also the place where the angels roosted with their couriers, angels in miniature. To make it even more special, it was where the Angel Steorra operated from when she wasn’t flying to the edges of the land managing threats the Stellar Guardians couldn’t. Which was to say she was always gone.

But it was over her shoulder that she looked longingly. The dark depths of the forest were murky rather than pitch dark and the shades of green, brown and gray blurred together. Closer by, each leaf and branch of tree and shrub alike were so clear she could count every leaf. Here the air was still and warm, filled with the smell of dead things covered by growing things. The odd spicy-sweet smell of wild roses filled the air. But it was tainted with the stench of contained humans with their rotting food and shit and piss. Here on the edge it was silent except for the birds that had no reason to know a hunter’s arrow or a child’s dagger. She had no choice but to ignore the lesson Nature had learned. She had been summoned by the Archbishop using the angel courier that was waving its hand at her to hurry. If she didn’t move soon it would start pulling her clothes.

With a glare at the courier and a bracing breath, she went to step forward when her senses pinged like the prick of a thorn. She pressed her side to the trunk of a poplar, holding very still as she breathed slowly to keep her pulse controlled. Carefully she peered around the trunk and flinched back.

Completely visible to her stood a humanoid figure barely twenty paces away in a patch of sunlight at once a shadow and a beacon. He was dressed in pitch black clothes, a long black coat with a slit in the back for horse riding but there was no horse in sight or scent. His white blond hair glowed like a candle, illuminating the gray pallor of his skin.

Vampire.

The smooth worn hilts of her throwing daggers were soft against her fingers as she gripped them. So the stories about vampires not standing the sun were lies. It didn’t surprise her but she never encountered them in daylight before in all her years of hunting them. The daggers would startle him, and even if she cut a critical artery it wouldn’t kill him. The shock however would be enough for her to get close to cut off his head with her hunting sword. But he moved just as she drew the daggers. She stiffened, going still, waiting for him to approach her. He walked away, as if he hadn’t seen her or heard the whine of her drawn daggers.

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Further Recommendations

ga1984: I really enjoyed it! Characters were deep and plot was pretty complex. A bit on the violent side but it doesnt detract from the story. Very dark but situations make sense. Ends kinda abruptly and later chapters will need some editing work. I'm assuming there's more in the works?

sujitha nair: What's so distinct about this story was that it could easily be real. Praveena can be your classmate, neighbor or that girl you saw at the coffee shop today. The important decisions she makes and the dilemmas she faces, remind us of our own twisted lives.

Alice Liu: Whoa! I've been wondering how would the Maurauders react to Harry's life and here we go! YOU ARE THE BEST! All the characters are consistent with their personalities shown in the book! I love how you compare Lily with Molly and it's definitely true for her being a mother! I wish Peter comes have ...

Olivia N J Hamel: I want this book. I love it so much. It is so enjoyable to read and to have a copy of this always, I would be very happy, to always be able to come back and look at it again.

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...

summerstone: Seriously this is one of the best books I've ever read. The plot is intriguing, I love the narrative style. Its very descriptive and unique, with minimal cliches. It makes for a great read and the sequels are amazing. Totally worth reading. ^^ That's me trying to be professional. But in all hones...

Elizabeth Robbins: 4.5 starsAs far as apocalypse stories go, this one took a new direction. I'm glad someone finally addressed the need for a vampire apocalypse! This is sort of a multi-genre festival of delights. With hints of forced societies, vamps, hunters, romance, apocalypse, government conspiracy, and thrill...

Hudson: Your story was fantastic Erin! The Rising Sun was one of the first stories I read on Inkitt, and I have to say I don't regret the three to four days I spent pouring through the story.Probably the biggest strength I see in your writing is your characterisation of Eliana, Oriens, and the rest of th...

jaslynnash2015: I absolutely loved the story from beginning to end and I loved following each of the characters throughout their journey! Very captivating although there were a few grammar errors, but very captivating still! Can't wait for book 2!

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