Surprises are wonderful things.

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Surprises can be wonderful things. The unknown and unexpected, though often scary, can be filled with excitement and an energy that infuses everything with newness and a spark of creativity.

I bring up surprises for two reasons. First, we will soon be announcing a surprise that we feel is sure to bring a smile to all of our readers faces, it certainly has to ours. It is a new way to bring the magic of Necromancers’ Pride home to enjoy. We will be letting you in on this very soon.

The second reason I bring up surprises is because one greeted me as I was looking through our catalog of work. I often like to reflect on what we have done, going back to see what we chose to omit or change in order to create the best world and story of which we are capable. As I was looking through the archives of our work, I came across an unexpected surprise that indeed brought a smile to my face.

The first breath of life that was infused into the world of Tarune took place several years ago, when D.W., our dear friend Cory Tyler and I had a meeting at a place called the Marmalade Cafe. We shared ideas and concepts, and a fellowship was born over rings and breakfast. Little did I know that, all these years later, those concepts and ideas would give birth to the Necromancers’ Pride Saga.

Here is an excerpt from one of my earliest imaginings of the world we have now come to love. This storyline did not make the book, but it inspired a great swell of joy in me at having come across it.

From this humblest of beginnings was born the world of Necromancers’ Pride.

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Perfection can be found in sincerity.  The fluidity of purpose, honed to its truest form is sincere action brought about by a focused will.  The will that can focus the power of the spirit will have dominion over the body, and in so doing, will set the forum for perfection.

Over and again, time and time again, those words rang loudly and with resolute purpose in the mind of Cor Tylanthridin.  Each word carried with it its own energy, powering him onward in his meditation.  As he spoke to himself, Cor Tylanthridin weaved his body through the various forms of his gata, or sword form.  His blade, long and slightly curved, had a pommel made from the light but sturdy balsa tree, and rested in his grip with the ease and comfort of a child holding a wild flower.

His form, as his blade, bellied the strength and power found within.  As he weaved himself in and out of every stance and posture, his rhythmic movements displayed a measured grace acquired only after years of determined study and practice.  This exercise ritual he performed daily.  Each day he used it to focus his energy, vary reminiscent of the intense, almost supernatural training of the Oslyn themselves.

He moved through his forms with speed and strength, each muscle flexing and releasing in perfect harmony and controlled symbiosis with its opposite.  As his sword cut its silent path through the air, his body and mind had melded into complete focus.  His was a form of sincerity; his was a quest for perfection.

As he neared the end of his form, Cor was called from his meditative state by the ringing sound of hooves racing with all haste up the path.  It was rare for Cor to have visitors here, rare, but not uncommon.  There was a time when the great amphitheater which he now called his dwelling was home to some of the greatest spectacles of art and dance seen in the ancient world.  Now, however, this once mighty center of the arts stood in humble ruin, war and natural disasters leaving it with only the haunted specter of a bygone greatness.

Finishing with a flurry of strikes and summersaults, Cor quickly sheathed his blade and looked to the entrance of the amphitheater.  Built into the side of a mountain, its entire design was meant to lend itself to story telling.  The great walls, now decrepit and crumbling, still held much of the acoustic resonance for which the amphitheater was once renowned.

Coming to a stop directly in front of Cor, a rider extended an outstretched hand.

As the rider sat his mount, the mare neighing and chomping at her bit anxiously, Cor quickly tide the sash of his humble woolen robe tightly.  This imposing rider stared down ominously, but did not speak at all.  He merely sat there with his arm extended, waiting patiently for Cor to take his hand.

The time that had been foretold had come.  Without another moment’s hesitation, Cor Tylanthridin grabbed the rider’s hand and, nimble as a cat, mounted the mare behind the armored crimson rider.  Quick as lightning the rider turned his mare towards the entrance and firmly dug in his heels.  They were off, without so much as an utterance.

What use was there for words when the time of the prophecy had come?  The time of Cor Tylanthridin’s destiny was at hand…

Necromancers’ Pride ~ 

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