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Black Blood

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Summary

Celeste's life is far from the enchanting fairy tale one might expect from a princess. Her father, a ruthless and self-absorbed king, leaves a trail of death and destruction in his wake. To seal alliances and maintain his power, he arranges for Celeste's marriage to Chief General Christiaan Franders. The marriage that Celeste thought would fulfill her dreams has turned into her worst nightmare. In addition to her role as crown princess, Celeste is also one of the four Night Riders, responsible for safeguarding the magic. However, her father harbors a deep desire to eliminate the four powerful dragon riders, putting Celeste in constant danger. Her only reason for staying is her younger brother Elien, whom she must protect at all costs. When Celeste's true identity is uncovered, she's forced to flee the castle. Reluctant to ally herself with a vampire clan, she meets the adventure-seeking Novak. By chance, they embark on a perilous journey together in search of the other Night Riders, hoping to put an end to Celeste's father's reign of terror. But their task proves much more challenging than anticipated, and Celeste must confront her traumatic past and decide if she's willing to risk everything.

Genre:
Fantasy / Romance
Author:
Darky
Status:
Complete
Chapters:
102
Rating:
4.4
Age Rating:
18+

Prologue

Long ago, about 350 years, there were two brothers named Yin and Yang. The two wizards grew up in a wealthy family. In the busy streets of Livas, people spoke contemptuously of the twins; they were seen as restless, foolish, but most of all, rude and spoiled. The villagers understood the children’s behavior, having a busy father with loose hands, a mother who cared only for beautiful dresses, and no one who really cared for them, what could be blamed on them?

Yet little changed as the brothers grew older. They remained spoiled and, despite all the money, lacked something in their lives, power. They wanted to become the two most powerful wizards that had ever existed. They were not the first to have thought of it and would not be the last. The two brothers were laughed at when they shared their life goals with others. No one believed them. Contempt and disbelief made the two brothers determined to achieve their goal.

In the first years, they created new spells, tried to convince everyone of their power, but no one took them seriously. Slowly, the two brothers were driven to madness, creating more dangerous spells and practicing forbidden magic. Everyone dismissed them as the two crazy brothers from a bad family.

After a decade without success, they turned their attention to the life lines.

The magic in our world is fueled by four energy lines in the ground, also known as the life lines. All magic and supernatural beings are connected to that magic. Over the years, names have been given based on their location: Blood, Air, Water, and Light. We are all connected to at least one, depending on which magic you were born with. If the magic in a life line loses its power, all connected beings are doomed to become human. If a line dies out, all creatures die with it. A line only dies out if its magic is too dark. Think of it as a candle with wax that keeps refilling itself. In principle, the candle will never go out, only if the flame becomes so large that the wax burns too quickly.

Yin and Yang were so blinded by their desire for power that they took the risk. They each connected themselves to an additional line, but even that magic was not enough. With the three darkest spells ever known, they connected the four lines to themselves. They were no longer dependent on the lines; the lines were dependent on them.

They had achieved their goal but paid a price they had not even foreseen. So much magic proved uncontrollable. They were consumed until there was nothing left of them but two evil spirits. All human and rational thoughts had disappeared. They caused irreparable damage. Thousands of buildings, pieces of nature, and people did not survive.

The brothers seemed invincible until, after more than 100 years, the nymphs found a solution. Killing the two brothers was not an option, the lines would die with them. The nymphs captured the spirits and locked them in the form of two fish. The fish were cursed, forever forced to swim around each other in a pond of one square meter.

The problem with the two brothers was solved as far as possible. The life lines were heavily damaged, leaving little of the world. Something or someone was needed to protect the lines.

Once again, the nymphs found a solution. From the ashes of the Blood Mountain, the place where all life lines intersect, the nymphs founded four dragon eggs. The fastest, most powerful, and darkest dragons ever to exist were later known as the Nazu. With the ashes of the Blood Mountain, a plant from each line, and the water in which Yin and Yang swim, the nymphs created a spell. Two girls and two boys were born, with exceptional strength and knowledge, each fully connected to a life line. They had the magic to speak any spell with a snap of their fingers, control the wind, and have a powerful nose for mischief. They never fell ill, were immortal and invincible. They were known as the Night Riders. They restored balance to the world, healed the lines, and protected them.

After a hundred years of service, this burden became too great. They begged the nymphs to rid them of their power. The nymphs agreed, and a new circle began. Every hundred years, two girls and two boys are born with a magical heritage. The Nazu also gets a new generation. During their teenage years, their magic develops until they possess all their powers at the age of eighteen.

The four original dragons died of old age. The original Night Riders remained immortal but were nothing more than four magicians. Eventually, most took their own lives.

Not everyone was happy with the arrival of the Night Riders. They saw the amount of power as dangerous and unfair. Attempts were made to kill them, but none succeeded. No one knew what would happen if a Night Rider were to die before the new one was born. It was not even certain if the circle would continue, if the lines would survive, and what would happen to Yin and Yang. There was no cause for concern; they were unbeatable, and ultimately, no one came close to a real murder.

Centuries passed peacefully, at least until a new king came to power 40 years ago. His hatred for the Night Riders is so great that he will do anything to kill them, to have that power himself. What the king does not know is that his daughter is one of those Night Riders, and that I am that daughter.


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