This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.
Grand Prince Amil picked at his food apathetically. Shamrock-green walls rose up around him. Glass-paned windows set in gold frame towered on his left. On the right, a wide set of double-doors silently opened and closed as the butlers came in with platters of food. Prince Amil’s foot slipped slightly as he tried to scuff his uncomfortable shoe against the shining white, porcelain floor.
In front of the prince, a long, polished, beige table stretched to the other side of the room. On that side, Emperor Aaric sat. Without the royal robes and the wicked, dark eyes, the Emperor would have looked quite ordinary.
Amil always felt intimidated by his father. He wasn’t sure if it was the Emperor’s adept talent with dark magic or his harsh demeanor. Perhaps it was the frightening punishments that Prince Amil had to experience first-hand as he grew up. Maybe it was the fact that he had never seen his father genuinely smile.
But there it was. The Emperor had a gleeful smile stuck on his narrow face. He noticed his son’s stare and smiled even wider. “You must be wondering what I’m so happy about.”
Amil pushed back the fear scrabbling at the edge of his mind. He shrugged. “Well, true, this is the happiest I’ve ever seen you. Have you finally won over Delona to be your seer?”
The Emperor scowled at his son’s haughty attitude for a moment. He growled, “Son, Delona knows the price of disappointing me. Do you?”
The young prince twitched nervously.
Emperor Aaric continued. “The digging in Adornath has finally come with amazing results.”
“And what would that be?”
The Emperor leaned over his food excitedly. “They found something. Something with great power. This will change Ianen!”
“Great. It’s just what you need,” Amil rolled his blue eyes. “Because an Emperor always needs more power.”
The Emperor narrowed his eyes at his son and sighed. “I suppose you are still too young to understand that I am doing this for the good of Ianen. You are barely older than one decade after all.”
Amil stabbed a piece of lettuce with his silver fork. “Good? All you do is kill anyone with common magic, Father. Anyone who doesn’t conform to your thinking is punished! How is that good?”
Emperor Aaric clucked his tongue condescendingly. “Amil, ridding the world of such filth is necessary.” He sighed again. “Honestly, how can I let you take over my lands if you are not going to enforce the law?”
“Maybe I don’t want to be Emperor if I have to enforce these laws!” Amil yelled.
The Emperor gave him an arctic stare, hissing between his teeth. “One day, you will, whether you want to or not, Amil. For centuries the Valerian Empire has protected Ianen. All we do is just.”
Amil opened his mouth to protest, but they were interrupted by a firm knock at the door.
“Come in,” the Emperor breathed out calmly.
A soldier came in and kneeled swiftly at the Emperor’s feet. He kept his head down and stammered. “Y-your Grace, we have news…a-about what the squad in Adornath found.”
“Yes, what is it? Last I heard, Torin was bringing it to me,” the Emperor said impatiently.
“Y-yes, well…” the soldier stuttered.
“Spit it out.”
“They lost it.”
A moment of deafening silence hung in the air.
“What?” Emperor Aaric’s voice was calm, but a livid anger burned in his eyes. The soldier whimpered and bowed his head lower in shame.
Faster than Amil could follow, his father took his silver knife and sent it through the soldier’s head. Blood splattered on the porcelain white floors. Prince Amil shuddered and averted his eyes.
“Those fools,” The Emperor sighed. He stood up and snapped. Two servants appeared from the double-doors.
“Clean up this mess before it stains my floor,” the Emperor commanded. He turned and strode out of the dining hall, his green robes swishing behind him.
As he watched the servants clean away the bleeding corpse, Prince Amil exhaled and shook violently. No matter how many times he saw his father personally give the death sentence, he could never get used to it. The usual sick feeling gurgled in his stomach. He calmed himself then thought it strange for his father to get so angry in the first place.
“It must be really important,” he murmured shakily as he left the dining hall, no longer hungry.
Chris Rolfe: BOY!!! I sure love what Aer-Ki Jyr did with this series. IMHO he captured the essence of what stargate is all about. Thru out the Stargate stories Aer-Ki wrote Stevens and John Shepard some of the main characters in his stories are pursued by a corrupt I.O.A.. All the while Stevens is changing in...
Nymeria: Really can't get enough of this story. It flows well, it captivates the reader from page 1, and throws you into such a well-written, well conceptualized world that you'll believe it's real. Everything in the book is meshed together really well. From character backgrounds to plot twists, you can t...
MavisMcQueen: "To Live Again" is a well crafted, highly engaging, heart vibrating tale surrounding our favorite Elven King. The author will keep you engrossed until the very end and by that time you will feel so strongly for Clara and the other characters that you will never want it to end...like ever. Thrandu...
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...
: This is a very interesting book - mostly because the heroine is quite charming and well rounded, and has very real issues to manage in her life. Most of all,. I loved the view inside of the life of a South Asian girl/woman, the emotional self-talk, the customs and preferences, the expectations a...
Alex Rushmer: This was not what I expected, but I enjoyed it a lot Malfoy was always one of the characters that I liked a lot, so I like that a lot of this happens between him and Colette. I read the first couple chapters, and I enjoyed your writing style and am excited to see where you take this story. My com...
PurpleInkling: Hippocrite is spelt hypocrite.Also it is an awesome story! A good one after so long. I was hoping someone would write a good fanficiton playing off what Ron said at the station. You are doing a remarkable job. It would have been interesting if Albus had also ended up in Ravenclaw though that mig...
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 ...
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?
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!"
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."