A Different Focus

Whew! That twelve part tale is in the books (no pun intended) and I am ready to move on. Hopefully you enjoyed reading it as much as I did writing it. Ok, writing it was a bit of a stretch for me- way outside of my comfort zone.

Now that you have been acquainted with my style I figure it is time to introduce you to some of my work. This week I would like to present my first published book. Armies of the Silver Mage was written during my time in Afghanistan way back in 2002-2003. Yes I know, there was a war on, but you would be surprised with how boring it gets between firefights and rocket attacks.

Armies saw the birth of my world,  Malweir. To date I have published nine novels in this world and have a few more conjured up. But that’s another story. Here’s a taste of Armies of the Silver Mage.

“Which of you has been tampering with my steel?” he asked in a plain and forceful tone.

“I did, sir,” Fennic quietly admitted.

Old man Wiffe turned on them, a grave look etched into his features. “Come forward, young man.”

Fennic slowly complied. He was unsure what his punishment was going to be. His father always frowned on his natural curiosity. More often than not he was in trouble for this or the other.

“What drew you to this blade?” Wiffe asked. He had the sword in hand, golden fire light dancing on the immaculate silver.

Fennic’s eyes locked on the mystical weapon, mesmerized by the simple perfection of it. “I don’t know. I just felt pulled to it, as if it were.”


He nodded. The urge to reach out and seize the magnificent weapon was almost too much to resist. Fennic failed to understand why he was so drawn to it. It was just a sword after all. Where was the supernatural desire coming from? All knew was that the sword seemed to call his name. It wasn’t until Wiffe slapped his hand away that he realized what was happening.

“Careful lad. This sword has seen the best and worst of men.” He eased it back into the sheath. “Enchanted it is. The Elves made it long ago out of friendship with Man. It’s said that only one in every generation may use it, and the sword always chooses who that person is.”

“Does it have a name?”

“All items of power have names and legends surrounding them. This one’s name is Phaelor. It means “Heaven’s Eyes” in Elvish, and it’s made of pure star silver. Phaelor has been around for a thousand years. I’ve had it for almost fifty of them. At last I can give it to another. My time has come to an end.”

Delin interrupted. “What do you mean?”

“Young Fennic has been chosen to safeguard the sword,” Wiffe announced.

“Your father is going to kill you when he hears about this!”

Fennic wasn’t listening. Every slumbering desire throughout his short life was culminating in the folded grain of this weapon. Scholars argued it belonged in a museum for the world to see, magicians laid claim to its inherent powers. Regardless of what the more civilized folk believed, Phaelor was a tool of war and had a role in the shaping of the future of Malweir. Whether he wanted to or not, Fennic was now part of that legacy. What was more important, he wanted to be a part of it.

If he looked close enough, he could just make out the pure crystal gemstones for which it was named. They grabbed the light and radiated a confidence and power seldom seen in this quiet part of the world. He could see the wrath laid out by the blade. The blood and horror. He saw brave men die, begging for their lives, and kingdoms topple while the sword remained cold. And he discovered fear.

The sword had claimed him, bonding them until another came along, and that frightened Fennic. He’d always had dreams about what the world was like, but had never had the inclination to find out for himself. Phaelor wasn’t going to give him the choice. Wide eyed, torn between the quiet home life and high adventure, Fennic suddenly became aware of whispered urgings.

“You have been accepted by Phaelor, and I pass it to you freely,” Wiffe said in a voice mixed with relief and sadness. “Though I warn you, do not let the sword consume you as it has others before. It can neither show you the right path nor solve your problems with a sharp swing. I looked long and hard for someone, anyone, capable of unlocking its secrets, and every time I came away empty handed. Ware the future, my young friend, for Phaelor is destined for greatness and ruin, as are all who dare hold it.”

If you enjoyed this go ahead and snatch a copy. It is free for the time being and I would love to hear what you all think. Armies of the Silver Mage revised cover

7 Comments on “A Different Focus

    • The cover was done by a young cadet of mine while I was an instructor the US Military Academy at West Point. Good kid with a lot of talent.

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