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The Edge of Destiny - Book One
The Nord Chronicles
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ISBN-10: 1-55404-432-4
ISBN-13: 
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy/SF
eBook Length: 272 Pages
Published: March 2007



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Total Readers: 4

From inside the flap

Eric Hart was a Spacer and had faced many difficult situations before. This one was different. He alone had survived the crash on a strange alien world and now his survival depended not only on his skills but also on the human population that inhabited the planet, humans that shouldn’t be there but were. As Eric is transformed into a Son of the House of Nord, he discovered the Guardians, hooded figures that watched from the shadows and controlled events for the fulfillment of their master plan.

In The Edge of Destiny, Eric is the only person that can stand between the power-hungry Filus of Tyer and the crown princess of his adopted land. He begins a quest in search of a missing king and ends as the Lord of Sommonee, constrainer of kings.

Book One is only the beginning in a journey that when completed will cover 3800 years of the Planet Carna’s history and the promise of saving Earth from Armageddon.


The Edge of Destiny - Book One (Excerpt)


REMEMBRANCE

The horse came to a halt in front of the shop and the rider dismounted waiting for his servants to catch up with him. From the wall hung a sign that indicated that this was the shop of a stonecutter. The shop occupied the lower floor while the mason’s living quarters sat above.

The man could smell some kind of meat roasting and he guessed it was coming from the inn and tavern across the street. The keeper was preparing it for sell to his guests and those that would visit for refreshments during the day. If he had more time he might sample the food, but not today, he had much to do before he began his journey.

His servants joined him and he surrendered the reins of the horse to one and moved toward the entrance of the shop. He was still four paces from the door when it swung open and out stepped the tradesman.

"Welcome Lord," greeted the man.

"And to you," replied Lord Eric. "I have received notice that you have finished my commission."

"That is correct my Lord." With no further conversation the craftsman stepped to one side and bowed slightly. Lord Eric nodded and entered the shop. The man quickly entered behind and directed him toward the back of the room.

The shop had long tables running the length on both sides and the middle. Stones of all shapes and sizes laid the length of the tables and upon the floor. Many were fashioned in to objects ready to sell, while others showed only rudimentary work and still others were untouched by the craftsman’s tools.

They maneuvered their way around the obstacles and came to stop in front of three large pieces of granite. "Here, my Lord. Here they are."

Eric moved closer so that he could inspect the work. Before him were three blocks, one foot by one foot by eighteen inches. Each face had been ground smooth and reflected light like a mirror. The top face of each had been engraved with letters and words that only Eric of Nord could read.

He carefully studied the text, reading it over and over again to make sure that the craftsman had gotten it right. The man had worked from the parchment given to him and the young lord wanted to make sure that nothing was missing. After inspecting the first, he nodded and said, "Yes."

The craftsman expression changed slightly from one of concern to a slight smile. Eric moved on to the next stone, scrutinizing the engraving and once again he gave the acknowledgement that the work was correct, and the man’s smile grew a little larger. As Eric moved to the third stone, the craftsman pressed in on him as if he too wished to inspect his work. He backed up a step as the lord straightened.

Eric, young Lord of Nord, turned to face the stonemason. "You have done well. They are as they should be." He motioned for a servant standing some distance from them.

The mason bowed once again and replied, "Thank you lord, it has been an honor to be of service."

The servant produced a bag containing payment for the craftsman. It was not necessary for him to count the contents for Lord Eric’s honor and fairness was well known by all.

"Have the stones loaded into the cart and return them to the castle." Eric began heading for the entrance followed closely by its owner.

"Lord Eric, if I may be of service to you again, please call upon me."

Stepping into the morning sun, he said, "You may count on it."

The man bowed and as he rose begged a question. "Lord, if I may, what are the strange symbols on the stones and what is their purpose?"

Looking at the man for a moment before replying, Eric said, "It is a language. The words are unimportant to you, and their purpose." Once again he paused before speaking. "They are to mark the dead." Once more a pause and finally, "Even that part of me that has died."

The expression on the mason’s face showed that he had additional questions but he held his peace, stepping aside as the servants exited carrying the first stone.

Eric took hold of his mount’s reins and climbed upon the animal’s back. Without saying anything further, turned his horse and headed off down the street. Reaching the end of the village he stopped and considered his next action.

The path before him split into two forks. The one to the right was the most direct course to the castle, while the left curved and passed the Chapel of Nord. After a moment of consideration, he turned left and trotted toward the chapel.

Father Dean walked among his flowers carrying an ancient vessel containing water. He stopped at each one, poured a drink and spoke in low tones to each of his plants.

"Evangelizing the plants, father? Or are you just practicing your sermon?" Father Dean turned as Eric brought his horse to a stop.

"Neither and both. The creation of God rejoices in his words." He placed the water container on the ground. "Even these flowers shout His glory."

Eric moved to the man and gave him a warm embrace. "It is good to see you. I am sorry that I have not made time to come here before now."

The older man smiled. "You have been busy since your return. A lot has happen to you since you left for Vesta."

Eric’s countenance became serious. "That is true, father. Many times I wasn’t sure if I would ever see the green forests of Nord again."

The priest placed his hand on Eric’s shoulder. "My son, God has protected you for a great purpose. As He has demonstrated by His grace to you."

"Perhaps," replied the young lord.

"Ah, still the skeptic."

"It is my nature."

"Your nature is what the Lord makes of it." Eric shuffled his feet slightly, and the older man could see that this topic made him uncomfortable. Father Dean only wanted to make his guest feel welcome and knew just how to do so. "I have some fresh tea brewing and some sweet cakes just from the oven. Will you join me?"

"You know I can’t refuse such an offer."

The two men walked toward the building. The chapel was a simple stone structure rectangular in shape with an arched roof made of slate. The windows on either side were made of amber colored glass with a large semi-circular one at the back wall. This window was stained with an image of the first Lord of Nord receiving a golden grant for the Lands of Nord from God.

Eric considered this to be a little too much, but he had always kept this opinion to himself. There were something better left unsaid and this was one.

Father Dean led Eric through the sanctuary and through a door on the right back corner of the chamber. The door opened to the rear of the grounds and to the cottage of the priest. Dean was a bachelor, even though most of his counterparts were married. Once Eric had questioned him regarding his status and he had replied that, "God is the only companion I need and the parishioners all the family I want." The answer seemed sufficient and Eric never asked again.