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*Sneak Peek* Untitled Fantasy Story


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When I’m not writing superhero nonsense, I’m dabbling in some fantasy nonsense. This story is still very much a WIP. I have a lot of worldbuilding planned, and have been trying to get it across without a big ol’ info dump. 

This is a rough version of the first chapter. The narration will switch between the three leads. I expect the tone to be darker than Syndicate, but still solidly YA. 

 

Quote

 

“Your Highness, I really must insist that you wake up this instant!”

The voice behind the heavy oak door was muffled, but the panic still seeped through. “Her Majesty has made it very clear that you are to be ready by the time Master Dryden arrives for the ceremony rehearsal!” 

Grayson did his best to ignore the voice. Perhaps if he stayed silent it would stop. Another call was followed by rapid knocking, and he opened his eyes with resignation. 

His room was dark save for a sliver of light that shone through a crack in the window shutters. Grayson rose from his bed and opened the wooden slats. A cool breeze swept through the room, and rustled parchment strewn across his nearby desk. The sun had just begun to rise above the Far East wall of the grounds, piercing through the last remaining shadows of night. It was far too early for Grayson’s taste. He normally wouldn’t be stirring for hours. 

The knocking at the door resumed. With it crept a wave of emotion that made Grayson shudder the moment it was registered. “For Mythra’s sake calm down, Digby. I can feel you having a fit all the way from here.” Another emotion crashed over the first, embarrassment washing away anxiety. “Come in Digby, but only after you’ve gotten a hold of yourself.”

The door creaked open to reveal a short, plump man carrying a wash basin and linens. His downward gaze betrayed the bald spot at the back of his thin, straw-colored hair. “I don’t mean to be such a mess, Your Highness, but you do know what an important day it is.” 

Grayson looked back from his place at the window and gently took the wash basin. Digby had been in the service of the royal family for the entirety of Grayson’s life, with nearly all of that time as his personal attendant. He was a constant positive, if not always calming source of guidance, and despite his tendency of being overbearing, Grayson really was quite fond of him. He closed his eyes and drew up happy, peaceful emotions from his memories. They wavered in the air around him, a subtle shimmer in his vision. With a mental nudge, Grayson pushed them outward into the room. Digby visibly centered himself.

“Oh. Thank you, Your Highness. I must admit I rather needed that.” Digby sighed and began to rummage through Grayson’s tall oaken wardrobe. “It’s just that you and the others have worked so very hard. It is only fitting that everything goes perfectly today.”

“I appreciate that, Digby,” Grayson glanced across the room at his empty bed before turning once again towards the window. It was indeed an important day, but he wasn’t sure that Digby understood just how much of his life had been leading up to the ceremony. 

Like any other mage child, Grayson began to demonstrate magical abilities at a very young age. Typically, a Master from one of the five magical colleges would have been fetched to access his abilities for placement in the appropriate school. In Grayson’s case, there had been no need. In the midst of a temper tantrum, he had convinced his nursemaid that her dress was on fire, and she had to be stopped from throwing herself off a balcony into one of the garden pools. The prince was obviously destined for the College of Mind. After the dust settled, the King and Queen urgently placed their son into formal training, as there are few things more disastrous than a four-year-old who can enter the minds of those around them.

Once assessed, the majority of mage children were sent from their homes to attend classes with their respective college in Eglium, the capital city of Oprana. The Five Colleges each fostered a school of magic and sought to engender a sense of societal duty in their students. Founded on the belief that magic was a tool for good, the Colleges attracted students from all over the country. 

Noble families, on the other hand, elected to hire private tutors, sending for a Master to reside in the family estate. As many of these noble families also descended from renowned lines of magic, it allowed for siblings to stay together through their magical education. Grayson, his younger sister Rowan, and best friend and family ward Damien Otterridge were all taught by their respective Masters within the palace walls. Queen Celesta had found it more appropriate for the Prince and Princess to see private tutelage after their royal status proved to be too much of a distraction for other classmates. 

So for twelve long years, Grayson learned under the watchful eye of Master Dryden. It was during these lessons that he learned to better control his abilities, no longer letting his emotions harm those around him. Master Dryden also oversaw many non-magical aspects of his education, from the history of the Old Kingdoms to ethical applications of his abilities. For a Mind mage in particular, who could so easily influence the thoughts and feelings of others, it was especially important to have an upstanding moral code. Grayson had been instilled with a great sense of right and wrong and knew that the use of his magic for dubious pursuits would have dire consequences from the College. The Council of Five, governors of the magical Colleges, would not tolerate what they called a Mindreaver, a Mind mage who used their abilities to donate and instill terror in the Kingdom. 

And now, after much hard work and dedication, Grayson was preparing for the ceremony to complete his studies. By the time the week was over, he, Damien, and Rowan would stand before the Royal Council as full mages. 

“Your Highness, if you would be so kind?” 

Digby’s voice brought Grayson back to the present. He turned from the window to see that a black outfit had been placed on the bed before him. On the chest the three Suns of Brightmore were stitched in gold thread. The dark sleeves were light enough to still be suitable for the warm spring air. Digby handed him a warm cloth and helped him wash up. He began to talk once more. 

“We are all so proud of the three of you,” Digby beamed. “It is a joy to celebrate the completion of any mage’s Sixth Phase, but to honor your Royal sister and Lord Otterridge as well… it will make for a happy time in the castle indeed,” 

Grayson smiled at Digby, and was about to reply when a sudden dizzy spell struck him. He closed his eyes and tried to steel himself, pushing the feeling away with a steady focus. 

The moment did not escape Digby’s attention. “Your Highness, are you alright?” He eyed the prince with genuine concern. 

“Yes, there’s no problem,” Grayson replied, recovering from the spell. He reached for the cloth in the basin when the room spun once again. Grayson staggered forward, much to Digby’s alarm. 

“Prince Grayson!” He cried, stepping forward to steady him. 

“I’m fine, I’m fine,” Grayson replied, but still reached out to grip his attendant’s arm. He worked to shake his head clear once more. “I’m just lightheaded. Probably just nerves before the ceremony. Would you be so kind as to fetch me some tea? I’m sure I’ll feel much better after I drink something.” 

Digby paused for only a moment, still concerned. “As you wish, Your Highness. But wouldn’t you like me to help you dress first?” 

“I can manage that, thank you Digby. That will be all,” The prince’s voice shifted. He wasn’t making a suggestion, but giving a royal order. Digby bowed and shuffled out of the room. Grayson followed him to the door and latched it shut behind the attendant. He rested his forehead on the cool wood and took a deep breath. As he exhaled, the world around him became lighter and dissolved away. He turned back to his bed. 

The room was no longer the orderly chamber that Digby had seen. A trail of clothes led from the middle of the room to the large canopy bed. A white linen shirt was thrown over a chair. Two pairs of leather boots and leggings strewn across the floor. Grayson’s eyes followed the trail until they landed on the naked figure in his bed. “And just what was all that about?” He asked the young man. 

“I’m sorry, Your Highness,” the man said, still struggling to untangle himself from the layers of bed linens. “When I woke and saw your attendant at the foot of the bed, I shouted in shock.” 

“And after you discovered he couldn’t see you, then what?” Grayson’s serious tone was betrayed by his grin, “The more active a person is, the more difficult it becomes to make others believe he isn’t there. It was hard enough calming Digby down while masking you, and that was before you started jumping around the bed.” 

Grayson finished washing up at the basin and began to pull on the trousers that Digby had laid out. “Next time, I’ll have a much easier time at it if you just stay put, understood, Jayson?” 

“Jordan…” the voice behind him replied. 

Grayson closed his eyes with a grimace. The spring’s class of royal cadets had been particularly attractive, and this one wasn’t his first. But they all looked the same in their training uniform.  

“Yes, Jordan, of course,” Grayson turned to him and flashed the princely smile that was beginning to earn him a reputation with the young men at court whose tastes aligned with his. He had inherited Queen Celesta’s yellow hair and sparkling blue eyes, while being gifted with King Arturo’s stature and ability to put anyone at ease. Even had he not been a mind mage, Prince Grayson Brightmore still would have been a formidable presence. His abilities merely allowed him to better gauge a suitor’s interest, as well as avoid any awkward confrontations the next morning. 

Cadet Jordan’s eyes lit up at the prince’s smile. He sauntered out of bed, the sheets falling from his tall frame. As he approached, Grayson was hit with a strong, animalistic wave of emotion. He didn’t need to be an empath to know what the soldier was thinking. He had eyes, after all. 

“Well, we are alone again,” Jordan whispered as he pulled on the trouser strings that Grayson had just tied. “Your attendant won’t be back with that tea for a while,” He pulled the prince closer and began to land kisses on his neck and shoulders. 

Grayson closed his eyes, and was about to return the favor when the cry of a bird floated in through the open window. He froze as if listening carefully, and then lept towards the sound. “What?! He’s not supposed to be back until tonight!” Leaning out the window, Grayson saw a lone red hawk circling overhead. He whistled to it and the hawk swooped low to the window, crying out again. Grayson turned to the other boy with excitement in his eyes. 

“Put your pants on, Cadet Jordan, and hurry down to the training ground. You aren’t going to soon forget what you’re about to see!”

 

 

 

Edited by BKWildenberg
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  • 3 months later...

Once again, I feel this is posted in the wrong place. It isn't a prompt, nor a response to one. You'd be better off opening a discussion forum for your own stories.

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  • 7 months later...

The description would indicate otherwise Page Scrawler

Peeks & Prompts

Authors can post sneak peeks at their in process writing for feedback or Authors are given a random prompt to help them get the writing juices flowing

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