Lanie Buchanan's life has been turned upside down. After witnessing a nasty divorce, enduring a drastic move, and discovering the murder of her mother, she's back on her father's horse ranch in Michigan where she's trying to cope.
Lanie soon finds herself thrust into the enchanted world of Barthenia, where vampires rule, and magical creatures join together in the fight to oppose them. She'll soon discover that no one is as they seem, and that someone close to her is harboring a dark secret, one
The city was restless, as if it too knew something was about to happen. Usually in the few hours after dawn the city was still alive, beating to a different pulse than that of the day, a pulse different than other night cities. But this city was not like other cities. No, it was much, much different.
In the balcony of the south tower the sixteen year old Crown Prince stood looking down on the majestic main square below. His face was barely illuminated by the torches of the mourning procession that paraded through the streets. Today was the anniversary of Her Fall, when their first queen was killed thousands of years ago. The Prince never attended these mournings because they triggered memories of his own.
This year though, there was more than just sorrow in the air, there was something else, he suspected; something sinister, waiting to strike, something that had waited centuries for the right moment to seek its revenge. Something-
The Prince spun around in one fluid motion and faced the palace guard that was gasping for air, as if he'd just run a mile.
"Yes?" He asked.
"Your majesty, we've just received word from our scouts in the woods that an army of v-" The guard was cut off by the sound of the alarm horn ringing through the city. Both froze and looked out the window, stunned into silence.
Those horns could only mean one thing; the walls that had not been breached for 20,000 years had been broken, the streets that had for so long known peace, now once again knew suffering, the One whose hands had once bore the blood of millions of innocent lives were know stained once again. It was just as she had foretold, they were under attack.
The Prince recovered himself faster than the guard. "I need you to do something; the very future of our world is at stake. I need you to find my aunt and uncle, tell them "kivisting" they'll know what to do. Now go." The guard was about to protest, but one look at The Prince's face told him it would be unwise, so he nodded and ran out of the room.
The Prince meanwhile set out into the hall way, which was now extremely chaotic, but he had one goal and one goal only: find his sister. He searched and searched and finally found her in the North tower on the other side of the castle, she was standing on the balcony looking down on the chaos that had ensued below. She turned at the sound of his entrance, and he saw that she held an engraved sword in her hand. It was the sacred sword, her sword, the sword that had always been kept on display in the throne room. Now its diamond crusted golden hilt was grasped in the tiny hands of his eight year old baby sister.
When she saw that it was him she immediately dropped the sword, and ran into his arms. "Oh my dearest brother, I'm so frightened." She cried.
He patted her back and smoothed her long hair reassuringly. "Shhh," He whispered. "you're safe now. But we must hurry there isn‘t much time." He looked around the room, seeing it for the first time. "Where are Mother and Father? Where is Bragon?"
His sister pulled back, fresh tears in her eyes. "We were separated, Mother and I were coming in from the Old Queen's ceremony, and she had to meet Father. Then I was with-" Her voice was drowned out by the roar of the palace doors being slammed open. "-then we were separated, I didn't know what else to do, so I went and grabbed the ancient sword and came here."
The sounds were getting closer, he had to get her out of this place, and fast. So without a word he picked her up, and moved closer to the tapestry on the wall, he pulled it back to reveal a secret door. He opened it and vanished down the stairs. The heathens were in for a surprise when they burst into an empty room.
When they finally emerged out of the darkness they were greeted by the light of the full moon. They were on the back side of the castle, in the base of the mountain it was built into; there a river ran past the steep palace walls. On the other side of the river was The Dark Forest. In the distance they could here the howls of wolves. Standing on the other side of the river were two cloaked figures, the guard had carried out his orders in finding the Prince's aunt and uncle.
"It is as we feared," He said as he reached them. "those God forsaken demons have made their move, and struck us on our most vulnerable day."
"Thantose should have listened." His uncle said shaking his head.
"We cannot change anything now," scolded his aunt, "We must complete our part; we need to keep her safe. Giver her to me, I brought the cloak." The Prince squeezed his sister one last time before handing her over.
"Protect her." Was all he said.
"With our lives My Prince." They responded in unison. As they turned to leave the woman stopped.
"What shall you do my nephew? Where will you go?" She asked.
The prince looked back the way he had come. "I will go back, and save as many as I can. They are my people, my responsibility now." she nodded.
"Be careful. You would've made your father proud. Be careful, for you are the Spirit of the West. Be strong, and be brave."
"Thank you," He said. "Oh and one more thing..." He dug into his pocket. "Give this to her when she is ready. Now you must leave, while the portal is still open."
His sister's cry of agony filled the space between them. "No! Brother, don't go!"
"I must." He said. "You need to survive, you're our only hope." As he spoke those words he watched as the scared child disappeared, and in turn was replaced by a fearless young lady.
"Goodbye Brother. Until we meet again." And with that the three silhouettes disappeared into the shadows of the forest. Before going back, The Prince spared on last glance toward the darkness. Then he turned around and went back to face the terror that lay inside the palace waiting for him.
All the while, the city was restless.