ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 35 – MISSING (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 35 – MISSING

Arkan and Lynsey arrived back at the house to find it empty. The tables and gunpowder were still there but it was otherwise deserted.  Lynsey turned at Arkan.

“They must have gone back to the camp. They were supposed to stay here though.” Her voice trailed off.

“I agree,  it is indeed strange.“ Arkan poked his head down the tunnel but there was no light to show anyone was down there. “We must go back to camp. The rescue must happen tonight or we will have an irate dragon on our hands when he is freed. From your description that would not be the best option.“

They hurried across the city, Lynsey clutching her head scarf against the breeze. There were plenty of people in the streets but no one gave them any attention. The last thing they needed was for her hair to draw attention to them.

The park was some distance from the temple. She didn’t usually expect to see the city residents at this hour but usually there were nomads milling around among the trees. It was really quite and she noticed there was a tang in the air as they approached. There was no one around. Arkan began to speed up beside and she broke into a trot to keep up. The smell got worse and smoke pervaded the air. She gasped, what had obviously been tents were smouldering on the ground. Treasured cushions were scattered in the mud as if there had been a struggle.  Lynsey ran through the remaining  tents, shouting for Illyara. Arkan followed moments behind. The communal tent was still standing but it was deserted as well. Her heart sank and her arms dropped to her sides as she reached the centre. Someone must have found out about their plan. They were gone – all of them.

“There is no blood.’ Arkan’s voice was quiet.

“Sorry?”

“There is no blood and no dead bodies. They are alive. If they wanted them dead they would have left them here as an example.”

A rustle behind them made her twirl to see Mewlli appear near the threaded tent flap.

“They took them.”

“Who took who?”

“The King’s guards, they took everyone. I was coming back from the house and turned invisible before they could see me. They have Illyara.” His voice sounded small.

“Mewlli, it will be okay. We will get them back.”

Arkan pulled Lynsey aside. “How exactly are we going to do that?”

“We find out who betrayed us, why and how much they already know. If they don’t know about the explosives then we can still go ahead. Not everyone knows about our plan and those who do know wouldn’t tell. It might not be all bad.”

Arkan looked at Mewlli then back at Lynsey, sighing.

“They would have taken them to the palace it is the only place with cells big enough. I can’t see why they would want everyone unless it is to try and find you. If we go after them they will catch you.”

“If it wasn’t for me, Illyara and her family would be safe in the desert. They risked their lives for me.”

He sighed. “Lets face it, they want to use you to fulfil some prophecy which the Dragon Brotherhood probably gave them so they could justify their own Sekhmet. You don’t really owe them anything. ”

“I know, but I would have died, well maybe not died but it would have been a fate worse than death in the desert. I probably would have been a walking skeleton or something.” She shivered. “I don’t know how it would work but I can’t die.” She rubbed her arms. “I would be continually reset with only my Earth memories. If I die here my body will resurrect and I will lose my memories of this place, including you.”

“That may be but it will be dangerous to go into the palace. They will be expecting us. I can get in to the palace easily but the cells will be harder – unless…” Arkan’s voice tailed off. “There will be a guard on every corridor on every level.”

“We have to try.”

“Please.” said Mewlli.

The sun was high when they got to the palace and the majority of sensible people had found a reason to be inside. Lynsey and Arkan skirted the outer walls until they reached a secret entrance.

“Doesn’t the king know about all these security leaks?”

“Why should he? This castle is at least three hundred years old. There are dozens of ways to get in if you know where to look. The king thinks having guards at each public entrance is enough. He probably doesn’t stop to think about any other ways in unless he wants to bring in his mistress.” He pointed at a window hidden by a creeper. “After you?”

She smiled sweetly and hauled herself through the narrow gap. The space they entered was dark. Her nose wrinkled at the musty smell, nobody had used this entrance in a while. Arkan was already a few steps ahead so she drew up to stand beside him at the inner door. To her surprise, the door made the smallest sound as he opened it a crack. Considering the smell of the place she’d expected it to sound like a door in a haunted house. They peered into the corridor. There was no one there so they started moving through the palace.

“I think the best thing to do is to go below the cells and come up through them.”

She nodded and followed him down the stairs from the kitchen. It’s not like we can storm the gates she thought sarcastically.

“Where are we going? What could possibly be down here?”

The steps were steep and Lynsey had to keep one hand on the stone wall to steady herself. The deeper they ascended the quieter and cooler it got until a subtle blue light began to dance on the wall in front of them. The stairs stopped abruptly to reveal a large cavern with water spreading as far as she could see. Algae glowed on the cave ceiling and Lynsey saw pinpricks of light reflected against the back of rats eyes as they scurried along the edges – but Lynsey wasn’t paying attention to the rodents but at the cavern itself. The reflection against the water looked like constellations.

“This is gorgeous!”

“The king has his own source of water, this is was why the palace was built here all those years ago. I believe it was a village in its own right to start with.” He seemed immune to its beauty.

They skirted the wall. Lynsey was loathe to touch the slimy stone but the floor was treacherous from the water splashed by the rodents. Were they going to bring the children back this way?

As they moved up another set of steps, Arkan moved his fingers to his lips.

They crept through another door which led to a chamber loaded with implements. “Torture”. he whispered. She shuddered in response.

There was no guard on the next two doors and they crept through to the cells. The tribe were there, separated into men on one side and women on the other. They could see the children sitting on filthy straw in cells further along. Ghareg in the nearest cell was the first to see them and his broad smile told her that she had done the right thing.

“The guards are just outside the door.” He whispered. Lynsey nodded. Arkan pulled out a set of tools and started with the locks. It opened with ease and he moved onto the next one. The nomads rose and gathered by the door. He put his finger to his lips at each gate. Silently, they flocked in the centre of the room and Ghareg spoke. “They took Illyara somewhere else. It was Faroushk who betrayed us. He said if there were two Sekhmets it made sense that the one that was real would be the one who had the most worshippers.”

“Where have they taken her?” Asked Arkan opening the last cell.

“The king took her, she is held somewhere else. They were going to kill us one by one until she agreed to give you up and work for them. These people are animals.”

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape
Chapter 26 - Gathering
Chapter 27 - Search
Chapter 28 - Temple Camp
Chapter 29 - Decision
Chapter 30 - Baserius
Chapter 31 - Sekhment
Chapter 32 - Miracle
Chapter 33 - Kathryn
Chapter 34 - Grolmak

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 34 – GROLMAK (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 34 – grolmak

Grolmak was dreaming. He was flying high in the clouds, the wisps of the clouds made his skin cool where they brushed him. The sun was hot and he rolled to feel the sun all around his body. He whooshed down to the ground letting himself fall until he almost hit the mountain top but then pulled up at the last second letting his great wings take the strain as he strived to go up. He went higher then dived again. The feeling was exhilarating. All too soon it was fading and he felt the dull heat of the cavern invade his senses. He felt his spirits sink as the cramps from sitting in a confined space reminded him of where he was. He kept his eyes closed trying to recapture the dream of his youth.

He heard Sekhmet walk in. He thought she could understand him in the beginning but he must have imagined it. She had hesitated the once and he thought she could but she’d shaken her head and continued. A brief hope dashed in seconds.

How long had he been here? He had no way of knowing. That girl had been interesting. It would have been better to share his imprisonment with someone, anyone, even a human.

He felt despair and anger but they faded as soon as they arrived. Nothing mattered his misery was complete.

Grolmek opened an eye.  Sekhmet was close, she was studying him like a spider. He might have done the same thing to the creatures he had studied during training but they weren’t intelligent. His body shuddered at the thought. To treat a thinking being like the way they treated him. He wasn’t even an animal to them just a source of blood.

She’d started talking.  Grolmek started to pay attention.

“…girl is like you.  She can heal but we don’t  know if she is exactly like you yet. ”

She means immortal, he thought. Did it matter? He wished she would go away.

“She was here again you know. Telling me that you are intelligent.  But we knew that already didn’t we?”

Grolmak stiffened. His eyes swivelled to look at her.

“Oh yes Grolmak.  I’ve known. It just wasn’t important to know. Would it have been easier if I talked to you while taking your blood?” Grolmek felt her soft ape hands slide over his back. She was stroking him!  He shuddered but remembered his chains were loose. If she found out…

“I need to know how you came here.  I am from the same place as the girl but I cannot heal without your help.” Grolmek snorted.

“I’ll see you in hell before I help you.” He snarled and tried to bite her. She stepped back easily as his collar jerked against the chain. Luckily it held. He berated himself. She was taunting him.

“You are obviously from a different planet. But the girl, she is from my planet and she has the same abilities as you. It must be the way you came here.”

She wasn’t even talking to him anymore. She reached out and touched his side.

Suddenly he was back on ilogac. The sun was hotter than usual and he was there to warn the Ministry of Weather.

“You must shut down  all energy sources for 24 hours.”

“We cannot do that. The president will be arriving this afternoon. He will not be able to land.”

The stone backless chairs were carved for their appearance rather than comfort.  Grolmak had been sitting in his for an hour before the Minister had even arrived. He should be glad that the Iloga had even turned up. Weather scientists were not high on the prestige list and the color of the Minister scales denoted he was of the highest ranks even before he achieved his position. Grolmak clenched his fingers tighter around the data crystals.

“You cannot be serious. His space ship will be a sitting duck. ”

“This visit has been scheduled for two years.  I do not think a simple solar flare should delay his trip. ”

“A solar flare can wipe out communications on this planet and we have an atmosphere! ”

“He is on his way. That is all.”

Grolmak scrutinized the minister. His blue scales glinted in the sunlight flowing through the pillars. They had been polished recently, betraying his narcissistic nature.  More interested in himself than his job, he thought. The other Iloga had already turned away showing there was no talking to him. Grolmak sighed. He had done everything he could do. It would be a matter of public record that he had.  He moved to the nearest pillars and dropped off the floor.

The Ministerial offices were built into the side of the tallest mountain in the province. Grolmak pumped his wings, feeling the pressure of the air. He rose slightly and he pumped again until he was again as high as he had been. He looked through to where the meeting had been but the floor was again empty. He shook his head and flew out clutching the evidence the Minister had refused to look at in his hands. He had one last chance to warn the president to delay his trip for a few days but it would take hours to get there.

The air was thinner at this altitude and it was difficult to catch the currents but one of his specialities was weather conditions and he knew which way the wind blew.

How could the Iloga be so stupid? If they didn’t implement protocols they would be cut off. They were the furthest outpost. They couldn’t do anything to jeopardise their position.  Taryk 55 would assume something was wrong when the president didn’t call in but that would take days. Who knew what could happen in that time. Emergency services would be inactive, schools would be closed.  Although he knew someone who would be happy with THAT. Grolmak’s razor sharp teeth flashed as he thought of his son’s delight if the school shut down.

Even if the ship landed safely,  the planet would be in to much turmoil to even think about the presidential visit.

A loud beeping filled the air and Grolmak’s eyes looked skyward. It was too late, it was starting. He had to get back to Frehal. He changed direction and slunk in the air, beatng his wings as fast he could. Clouds were billowing his way and he flew harder to stay ahead but more were coming from a different direction as he flew over a mountain range. Lightning danced in the clouds. He knew fear as a lightning strike went for him…

“So you both were hit by lightning.” Sekhmet mused. “Thousands of people get hit by lightning but not all turn up at the pyramids there must be something else that happens.”

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape
Chapter 26 - Gathering
Chapter 27 - Search
Chapter 28 - Temple Camp
Chapter 29 - Decision
Chapter 30 - Baserius
Chapter 31 - Sekhment
Chapter 32 - Miracle
Chapter 33 - Kathryn

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 33 – KATHRYN (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 33 – kATHRYN

There were hundreds of them and they all believed she was Sekhmet. She marvelled at them. She looked at her arm but there was no sign of the cut she’d made. She let go of the knife and it dropped to the floor. Lynsey stared at the upturned faces. It wasn’t right. She ran out of the tent. The words kept rolling around in her head. This wasn’t right, this wasn’t natural. What had she gotten herself into? She ran hard and didn’t stop until she reached the city gates. Directly behind her Arkan kept pace but stayed a few feet behind.

As he passed through the gates she looked at the distant hills. The desert ran the other side. She could go and disappear. This was a turning point if she carried on, some of those people would be dead tomorrow. For what? For a traveller like herself trapped by religious nutters. This wasn’t his world or hers but shouldn’t travellers stick together? The nomads didn’t deserve to die though. It shouldn’t be their problem.

Arkan was still there waiting patiently. He was standing against the city walls. His foot was scuffing the earth scattering the sand. That was a man of contradictions. He professed to love her. He’d followed her when he could go and blend in anywhere. He was of this world and would survive whatever he chose to do – unless he joined this escapade and it failed. Did she love him? Every time she looked at him her heart did a little flop, her pulse raced and she dreamed of a life together. This man was an assassin. He might have killed hundreds of people. It was his job. Could she love someone who killed for a living? Was it any different than loving a soldier? Both occupations were dangerous and it was acceptable to marry a soldier so why not a government sanctioned assassin? Surely that was what soldiers were anyway?

She shook her head what was she kidding, she would follow him anywhere. She was trapped by the attraction she felt. She couldn’t imagine being apart from him and didn’t want to.

The plan could work but was just ever so dangerous. If it failed everyone of those nomads would be executed as traitors. If they succeeded the nomads would still be exiles. They would have to depose the king as well or he would use them as a means to grab more power.

Maybe there was a third way? Lynsey thought for a moment maybe the Sekhmet of the temple didn’t want to hurt the dragon. Maybe she didn’t realise it was intelligent and had feelings. If she could just talk to her!

Lynsey turned to Arkan. “I need to talk to the other Sekhmet.”

“Why?”

“I think we should give her a chance to help us. She may not understand what she is doing If I can talk to her, find out if there is a way to free the dragon without bloodshed. Surely that is worth a shot?”

“Lynsey, I am not sure. Sekhmet needs the dragon to stay alive. She has a vested interest in keeping him. If they have promised a prolonged life to the king so does he. I don’t think there is another way.” He moved closer. “You know I care for you and if you feel you need to do this before we commit ourselves to risking the lives of others then I will support you.”

Lynsey felt the heat of his body next to hers. She was grateful for his support. She needed to make sure and this was the only way.

They talked at length for hours about the best way to approach Sekhmet. She never left the temple but did leave the environs of the cavern each night. Sekhmet had a suite of rooms away from the other brethren in the outer regions of the Temple. Arkan had seen them when casing out the temple. They would go there.

It was easy to get into the temple even with the extra guards after the publicity that Sekhmet was alive and well. Arkan led Lynsey to a creeping plant to the north of the building. It was in shade and no one noticed while they crept up to the second story window. The window was in the pantry and rows of pots, urns, bowls and bottles were lined up neatly on each side of them. Arkan led the way and Lynsey followed quietly behind. There were very few guards on this side of the building. They were concentrated on the front door and around the entrances to the Dragon. They were clearly confident that no one would bother Sekhmet.

Sekhmet’s rooms were luxurious. There were silk drapes hanging from the ceilings separating different parts of the room. She had a large bed with more silk drapes hung on a wooden frame with colourful cushions scattered on the bed.

There was a bathroom, visible by an open door to their right and a desk and chair were placed before the window giving a view of the mountains in the distance.

Lynsey and Arkan decided to wait in the bathroom. It wasn’t long before Sekhmet glided in. While she had pleaded fragility outside in front of the populace, here she strode in with the grace and danger of a wild cat. She closed the door and hung her robe on the back. She was wearing a deep red dress that covered her from head to toe.

She sat at her desk and her head went up.

“You wanted to see me?”

Lynsey looked at Arkan. They came out and saw the woman smiling into a mirror they hadn’t noticed.

“Hello again.”

“Hello. I’m Lynsey.”

“I know. Have you come to kill me?”

“No! I just want to talk to you. Did you know that poor dragon is in pain and understands what you do to him every time you take blood?”

Sekhmet stood up and strode towards them. She stopped at the bed and regarded them. “Did you know that we are very alike Lynsey? Lynsey is not a common name on Duat but then neither is Kathryn. I had to change it to blend in. It is quite strange here. Don’t you think? We spend our lives on Earth just trying to muddle along, meet someone, look after them and die. It’s not a life I ever wanted.” Kathryn’s eyes blazed. Lynsey took a step back.

Here, life is what you make it. I came here in the 1820s. I suppose it is a little different now. “

“You are from Earth?”

“Why yes, obviously from an earlier time. I think we came by very different ways though. How did you arrive?”

“I was struck by lightning and found myself here.”

“Interesting, I came here by the way most people did. My father was an Egyptologist. He was fascinated with the pyramids. I wasn’t that struck but it meant delaying the whole getting married and having children noose. We were promised that we would be shown a pyramid never before seen. Virgin territory as it were. My father couldn’t resist and of course I joined him for company and to be his unpaid assistant. Look this is going to take some time. Why don’t I show you?” Kathryn darted forward and grabbed Lynsey’s arm. She felt the bracelet hit something metal. Lynsey’s eyes widened as she realized that Kathryn had a bracelet too. She felt herself toppling over into darkness.

“Father, can you trust the man?” Lynsey heard a voice say.

“You cannot be certain but he has never let me down before. We need the money, that damned bank will take the house if we cannot pay the death duties. Your debutante ball was a washout and we have received no offers for your hand. We need to take risks.”

Lynsey/Kathryn turned and caught her reflection on a window hanging on the bathroom wall. Her chestnut brown hair was tied up in a knot. Her blue eyes looked through a pair of spectacles and her dress would have been old fashioned even for then.

Lynsey tried to make Kathryn move but found she was a passenger and all she could was watch.

“Pico,” she called, but there was no response.

“I’m not sure about this father.”

“We have no choice.” Was his curt reply.

There was a knock at the door and Kathryn skirts swished as she went to open it. It was the short stout man that they were expecting. He led them out of the room down to some horses waiting outside. There were even more mosquitos out here than in the room. How she detested this place.

“What, no camels?”

Her father gave her a quelling look and Kathryn subsided. She was used to riding so she hooked her parasol on to the saddle and hitched up her skirts to get on the horse. They were already moving off by the time she was comfortable. She trotted to catch up to them.

They rode in silence for an hour over cold empty desert. Her reservations were taking on an even darker form while she imagined them to be murdered where no one could hear their screams and their possessions taken from the hotel room. The last laugh would be on them though as they had nothing of value to steal but they did not know that.

After a while she saw some men working in the distance. They were soon close and she could see an opening had been cleared in the sand. Underneath a cream awning, stone steps led to a corridor that went underground. She looked at her father whose excitement was barely contained.

Their companions motioned them to go down the steps.

“Father, where is Felippe?”

“He must have been delayed.”

“We can’t talk to them without him.” She said.

“It will be okay.” She followed him down the steps and discovered a long low corridor. They stooped and moved in deeper. Rooms covered in treasure like she’d never seen dazzled them as they descended. At a fork in the tunnel, her father pointed for her to go one way and he went another. She was reluctant but she walked down the incline until she came to a bare room. She pulled up her candle and noticed through the disturbed dust sparkling in the candlelight that there were pictures on the wall. She drew nearer to recognize Osiris. Her fingers began to trace the outline.  The colours were amazing. She touched the green of his skin and some paint crumbled against her fingers. She drew back horrified at what she’d done.

Suddenly she felt dizzy. She covered her eyes to blink and she found herself in another room. She cried out for her father but he didn’t answer. She twisted but it all looked unfamiliar. The room was bigger with only three walls. She felt frightened, all the more scary for being an unfamiliar emotion.

Lynsey felt herself topple again and found herself back home. Daytime television was on and she was wrapped up in her blanket with a bowl of cornflakes uneaten on the table. God she felt ill. Her very bones ached but she knew she was getting better so was happy. She had an extension on her dissertation and she would be able to finish her degree next year. Things were looking up.

Lynsey next found herself a few months later waiting at the bus stop.

Kathryn was discovering how she had got here she realized. She saw herself head for the trees and then the lightning strike coming down…

Back in the room, Lynsey looked at Kathryn who had stepped away to stand before the bed again.

“So.”

“So.”

“So you are from a long time ago. You can still stop hurting the dragon. His name is Grolmak.”

“I know.”

Lynsey looked confused. “Oh you know because you got it out of my memories.”

“No, I know because he told me.” Kathryn pulled her sleeve up her arm and the Osiris band became visible. “You are not the only one who can talk to dragons.”

“You know he is an intelligent thinking being yet you treat him like you do?” Lynsey’s voice was rising in incredulity.

“Why should that be any different from keeping slaves?”

“You can’t do that!”

“I think you’ll find I have been doing that for over two hundred years.”

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape
Chapter 26 - Gathering
Chapter 27 - Search
Chapter 28 - Temple Camp
Chapter 29 - Decision
Chapter 30 - Baserius
Chapter 31 - Sekhment
Chapter 32 - Miracle

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 32 – MIRACLE (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 32 – miracle

Illyara waited as the crowds gathered. She saw some cousins at the back of the crowd but stayed invisible. She moved quietly, avoiding the out flung arms and legs of the excited crowd, keeping to the edges until she was near the stone steps. A metallic smell emanated from the woman’s blood, pervading the air around the steps. Illyara instinctively covered her nose but she still felt queasy. She crept behind Sekhmet to stand by the door and waited for the ritual to end.

As before Sekhmet healed dozens of people saving the worst for last. This time it was a man with one leg. He hobbled up to the steps on crutches and two priests rushed down to carry him up. He had an arm around each priest, and couldn’t have weighed much under his rags. Even so, their faces scrunched with the effort. Behind them, another priest carried his crutches and handed them back up to him at the top of the steps.

Sekhmet gave a wintry grin. Illyara shivered beside her. There was no concern in the other woman’s expression.  Sekhmet strode towards the man and bade him sit on a chair brought forward. He pulled up his trouser leg to reveal a stump, long healed over.

“No longer will this man be forced to beg.” She cried out. “Behold the power of Sekhmet!”

She slashed her arm once more, filling a chalice to the brim. She tottered but waved away a priest who moved forward. Another bowl stood ready, still half-full from the previous supplicant. She closed her eyes for a moment and handed the chalice to another brother standing by. The priest handed the cup to the one legged man. When he began to drink the first brother splashed the blood from the bowl over the old man’s stump. The crowd gasped. The man cried out in agony. As the crowd watched, bone started to jut out from his scarred flesh, spurting blood over nearby watchers. New muscle and skin quickly formed to extend over the glistening bone. Within minutes the leg formed before their eyes. The entire crowd dropped to their knees. There was no need to say anymore, Sekhmet turned and went inside.

Illyara followed the woman through the Temple into the corrider leading to the basement, keeping close so that she could pass through the door directly behind her. They passed guard after guard until they reached an ornate wooden door.

The woman stiffened just as she was about to open it and turned quickly. Illyara pressed herself against the cool wall. Her heart was racing. Had she heard her? Sekhmet cocked her head to one side then shook it. She opened the final door and Illyara followed closely behind.

The room was warm and dark and the smell! Lynsey had never mentioned the smell, it made her want to wretch. It was the same smell as outside. Illyara stayed near the entrance and watched as Sekhmet strode up to the dragon. His head rose an inch before settling down as if he didn’t care. What had they put him through? Sekhmet took a knife from a  nearby table and slashed at the dragon. He barely whimpered. Bright red blood steamed from his arm falling on to a deep plate which caught it.

The woman lifted the plate and raised it to her lips. Illyara turned her head away as the woman drank. Her gulps audible in the stillness. Illyara looked again to see Sekhmet wiping away blood from her lips with a cloth and turn away to the door. Before she left she said two words.

“Thank you.”

Illyara waited a few more moments before moving. She skirted a table and stood before the dragon before letting herself be seen. He didn’t even acknowledge her presence.

“I’m so sorry.” She whispered.

That got his attention and great head swung to look at her.

“I know you can understand me. Lynsey said that you could. I need to tell you that we are going to get you out. I know you have been here too long but with Lynsey we have a chance to free you. They will come tonight under the floor and they will blast you out. I will go now. The next time someone comes in it will be to free you tonight. Will you be able to fly out?”

The dragon raised his head and she heard a chain clank on to the stone floor.

“Of course, you are chained. Let me help you?”

She took a knife concealed in her belt and placed it in the lock around its neck. The lock was stiff but she pressed hard and twisted. Her tongue protruded from her teeth as she concentrated until it clicked. She let out a sharp exhale in relief. She stood up, leaving it closed but unlocked. She then moved around his body and did the same with his legs and tail.

“You should be able to shake your chains off when you hear the first blast.”

He nodded as if he understood.

Illyara looked around the room and spotted a chair beside the table. She moved it so it faced towards the dragon. She sat down with the back to the door. She would be able to hear it opening.

“I have to wait until they open the door so I may as well tell you the history of our tribe since you left while I wait.

“We looked for you when you went missing. We left the oasis and went roaming. We promised we would never settle down until we found you.” She paused. “We searched for a hundred years before we heard about the Dragon Brotherhood. We came here but we couldn’t get to you.“ Tears streamed down Illyara’s cheeks. “It is our eternal shame that we could not free you until now.”

The dragon shifted until he faced her.

“We travelled and waited. We heard of the first Sekhmet that we think is the same one that hurt you earlier.”

He nodded.

“She was powerful and had armies. We could not have rescued you then. The power of Sekhmet has waned. The kings rose to challenge them and were for the most part kept in check by bribery and arms but now is the time when we can defeat her.”

There is a war with the others, the king is ambitious, the brotherhood is running out of money and we have a new Sekhmet!”

The dragon raised his head. She took it as a question.

“I’ve seen Lynsey heal, she talks to people in their own tongue and does not realize it. She even looks like Sekhmet in human form with her blond hair. If we do not succeed this time, we do not deserve to.”

A creaking behind told her the door was opening and she made herself invisible. She swiftly strode to the door and waited patiently while someone came in. It wasn’t the woman but a man carrying a plate full of meat. He laid it before the dragon and sauntered back to the corridor. Illyara followed him silently until she reached the main temple complex and then hurried out of the building. It took minutes to enter the building that Arkan had found them and she found Lynsey in the basement filling up mini-barrels with black powder.

“He will be expecting us.”

Lynsey nodded and placed a top on to the keg and nailed it shut. She placed her arms on to the new surface and smiled at her friend.

“We are ready then, we just need to put these barrels next to an outside wall in the temple and Kaboom no more wall. Grolmak should be able to just fly out. I just need some help with taking the barrels down the tunnel.”

“I will see if my cousins are available.”

Illyara rushed off and sped to the park. She was surprised to find everyone gathered in the main tent. Faroushk was standing in the circle talking but she could barely hear with the muttering around her. She pushed through until she stood before him.

“What is happening” She asked him.

“We are going against Sekhmet by doing this.”

“What are you saying?”

“We cannot stand against a god.”

“She is not a god.”

“Illyara, we saw her with our own eyes: how she healed those people. There were cripples there, people with no legs yet we saw them grow in front of us.”

“That woman is stealing from the dragon. I saw her drink his blood. If she were really Sekhmet do you think she would age like she has? That is an old woman.”

Faroushk paused and everyone looked at him to see what he would do next.

Illyara took over, “This is the only chance we have of defeating the Dragon Brotherhood. She is not the real Sekhmet. She is too old and she is using the dragon for her powers. She is a fraud.  The real Sekhmet has no need for a dragon to heal.”

The muttering increased until they heard a voice from the entrance.

“I can heal too. If the dragon’s blood can heal others, I can too.” Lynsey stood in the doorway of the tent. Her face was flushed as if she had been running.

“We shouldn’t test the gods.” Illyara cried out but Faroushka overruled her.

“Yes we need to see this. How can we believe in something that we cannot see?”

Lynsey nodded at her friend and Illyara subsided. She never felt more ashamed of her people until that moment.

Faroushk pointed to the corner and called out for Edruter. An old man hobbled forward on a cane guided by hands. “We will see who is the real Goddess.”

“Has anyone got a knife” Lynsey asked.

A few knifes were offered and Lynsey took a small paring knife. She took a goblet that another offered.

Gritting her teeth she sank the knife into her wrist and let the blood flow into the goblet. It didn’t hurt that much she reflected. The goblet filled up a third before the gash healed up. She placed the cup between the blind man’s hands. They shook slightly but the man drew his hands up to his lips and drank deeply. Immediately they could see changes. The white covering his eyes were melting away and leaving the characteristic blue eyes of their tribe. He was silent for a moment before letting out a great shout. The goblet dropped to the floor and his family joined in hugging him. There were tears in his eyes as he turned back to Lynsey.

“I believe.” He said simply and then he went off to stand before his wife. Lynsey felt near to tears herself as the old man raised his hands to his wife’s face and traced its shape. Illyara knelt before her. One by one the others began to kneel until the whole tent was on their knees and Lynsey was the only one left standing.

“We will follow you. “ Faroushk said, looking at the floor. He then looked directly at her eyes and smiled. Sekhmet on Duat, we will follow you wherever it will lead.

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape
Chapter 26 - Gathering
Chapter 27 - Search
Chapter 28 - Temple Camp
Chapter 29 - Decision
Chapter 30 - Baserius
Chapter 31 - Sekhment

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 31 – SEKHMET (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 31 – SEKHMET

The party lasted two more days while the families reacquainted with each other. Now the important business was dealt with, the nomads showed a side Lynsey was not expecting. She walked through the camp with a permanent grin plastered over her face. The drink was flowing and they even accepted Arkan. He seemed to be able to blend in with wherever he found himself.  She watched him across the campfire as he threw back his head in laughter. He seemed more relaxed than she had ever seen him. She settled back, bringing the coral blanket tighter around her shoulders. A small voice invaded her thoughts.

You know he looks so easy in their company because of his job.”

“What do you mean by that?” Lynsey responded stifling a yawn.

He’s an assassin. It would not serve him well to stand out.”

Lynsey regarded Arkan again. Pico was right. It could all be an act. She bit her lip. Should she, could she trust him? What if he was in league with the king? Maybe he followed her to take her back. He did work for the man.

I’m not saying he cannot be trusted but Lynsey, you need to be careful. we don’t want to spend an eternity bleeding in a basement with a dragon for company.”

Pico had a point.

The tribes said their farewells to each other in good spirits. On the second night travelling, Lynsey grabbed a shawl from beside her cushions and stole out of the tent. She paused holding the tent flap open for a moment to see Illyara mumble for a moment before turning over to fall back asleep in a shaft of moonlight.

She wasn’t wearing her sandals and the sand felt cool under her feet. The camp was dark and the glory of the stars were undeterred by clouds. She would never get fed up of that view.

A few more feet away she found Arkan lying on a blanket. He was staring up at the night sky. He showed no sign he knew she was there. She lay down beside him without saying a word, looking at his profile. She placed her hands under her head and waited.  She hadn’t had a chance to talk to him since the night they found each other again. She twisted her neck to look up at the sky. She was close enough to feel heat radiating off him through his shirt in the cool air.

“They make you feel insignificant.” He said.

Lynsey stayed quiet.

“Have you been avoiding me Lynsey?” She heard him turn to look at her. She swallowed.

“I don’t know you.” She said simply.

He sighed. “I would do anything for you. I rescued you once remember. I could have a death sentence over my head. I have no idea if I do. I have risked everything for you.”

“You followed me from Ghinari.” It wasn’t a question but she had to be sure. This time it was Arkan’s turn to be silent as he looked away. After a minute he spoke.

“I thought you were gone. My career was over.” He let out a long sigh. “I didn’t know where you had gone but I needed to leave Ghinari – to disappear.”

“What we are going to do is very dangerous.” She replied. “If you are not sure…”

Arkan moved to lean on his elbow. He was facing her fully now. His long curly black hair fell forward over his chiselled features.

“Lynsey I will follow you wherever you want to go. I cannot go back working for the King. I love you.”

Lynsey’s breath caught in her throat. He’d said it. He clasped her nearest hand.

“Whatever you want, I will do it to prove to you that you mean everything to me.”

He seemed so sincere. She felt Pico shift in her mind as a warning. She wanted to believe him but the basement room with the dragon was her fate if she got it wrong. She struggled with the idea. Time would tell if he was telling the truth.

The trip back to Ghinari took another day.  They spent the day talking about their childhoods at the back of the caravan, avoiding thinking about the future. There was no point confronting him about her fears. If Pico was right then he would hardly admit to it. She kept thinking of the saying, keep your enemies closer. Her heart told her he was not her enemy but this was not her world, she had no one to rely on beside herself.  She had to choose her friends carefully.

Illyara weaved through her tribe to join them at the back. Lynsey hid a sigh of relief. It was hard trying to hide her confusion and Pico was not helping. He was literally the voice of reason in her mind and she did not want to hear it.

As they neared the city, they joined sparse groups of people. There was a mixture of people from merchants to the well-to-do but the closer they got  to the gates, all around people were pushed in wooden wheelchairs or hobbling on crutches. The closer they walked, the denser the crowds became.

The nomads drew together to avoid losing each other. She felt Illyara’s hand take hers and she grabbed Arkan’s hand to her left. It was a good thing that the rest of the tribes had split up, even with the crowds entering the city, so many nomads in their distinctive cowls in the same place would have been suspicious.

Lynsey turned to look at where Illyara was standing to stare at a distant cousin of her friend. She squeezed Illyara’s hand. All tribesman who had the ability were invisible to thin down their visible numbers. The yelks were also spaced out in the caravan so they could walk between them without being knocked into and discovered by another traveller.

As they entered the city itself, there was a festive mood among the crowd and people were singing and dancing on the streets. Men and women were openly drinking wearing their best clothes. Arkan grabbed a passing reveller.

“What is going on?”

The Temple have announced a new festival. Everyone has the day off.”

“What is the festival in aid of?”

“Two hundred years since the day that they were supposed to have captured the dragon.”

“Has everyone gone mad?” Asked Lynsey.

“No,” replied the man. “For the first time in one hundred and fifty years Sekhmet is coming out of the temple. She is really old but they have promised that she will heal the sick.”

“How does she do that?”

The man looked at her oddly. “With her blood of course. It is said that in ancient times she drank the blood of the dragon and became Sekhmet. She will be at the Temple at mid-day, every day for a week to heal anyone who needs it. I must go and get my mother.” He shook of Arkan’s hand and ran off.

“They must be draining the dragon. They must have heard that we are coming”

Arkan let him go. “We must go and see this Sekhmet and report to the others tonight at the park.”

“I agree.”

They pulled the hoods of their cloaks up and made their way through the streets avoiding eye contact with the revellers. Lynsey felt better knowing Illyara was beside her. If Arkan was going to betray her, now would be the time. Her heart began to race. She grinned, she had never felt so alive.

You are beginning to enjoy danger, Lynsey.” Pico observed.

“I know. I’ve changed a lot since coming here.” She whispered the next words. “Immortality will do that to a girl.”

Immortal yes, invulnerable no. You know what they have planned for you.”

It was a sobering thought. “Yes I do Pico. I remember.”

As they neared the Temple the crowds grew so thick it was almost impossible to go through. People were pushing and shoving to get to the front, trying to get a good look at the temple steps.

Arkan jabbed through a few people until they stood ten people back from the front near the edge of the steps. They had a good view but not to close they might come under the Temple guard’s scrutiny.

There was a long low note from a horn.

“It is beginning.” he shouted over the noise of the crowd. The double doors of the Temple were thrown open to the sound of the horn. A figure that Lynsey recognised stumbled through on to the steps supported by Baserius and another priest. Lynsey froze, cold running down her spine. She recognized that figure and voice. That was the priest from the dungeon.

“ … Sekhmet. I have drunk from the dragon and became an aspect of Sekhmet herself on this world.” The woman threw back her head and her hair shone silver in the harsh sunlight. “I was once blond like the lions. This is no more but I can still heal. Bring forth your sick and they will be healed by the will of Osiris and Sekhmet.”

Lynsey rolled her eyes. “She’s really lathering it on.”

“Lathering it?” Arkan’s voice was light and he leaned in to her hood. “What do you mean?”

“You know laying it on thick, making it more important than it is.”

“Healing is not a trivial matter. You can die from a cut.” Arkan looked back at the stage and back at her strangely. “You know if she can do it because of Dragon blood, you could probably do the same thing but you wouldn’t have to hurt anybody or anything to do it.”

Lynsey looked thoughtful. “I suppose so but I don’t know how she does it.”

As they talked people were lining up on the far side of the steps. Families were gathering with their ill members looking nervous as they waited in line. Sekhmet indicated for the first to come close and a man carried his daughter over to her and placed her before the woman on a chair. He spoke quietly and Sekhmet nodded.

“You see this child?” Her voice thick and raspy with age. “She has been in a coma for weeks after a carriage accident. The healers have not been able to do anything but I will heal her. I will first need an offering for my father Ra and brother Osiris.”

The man nodded and fumbled in his pockets. He offered a coin and a priest rushed forward to take it.

Yet another priest came forward with a gold knife and bowl. She took the knife and he held the bowl under her wrist. She looked up at the sky and started chanting.

“What’s she saying. “ Asked Lynsey.

“It will be old Egyptian.” Replied Arkan. “No one but the priest’s will be able to speak that.”

“Why can’t I understand it Pico?”

It’s not actually old Egyptian. I think she’s making it up.”

“Okay.”

The woman lowered then raised her arms to salute the sun and brought her right arm to just above the plate. With her left she took the blade and cut her arm. Blood bubbled to the surface of her skin and began to drip on to the bowl. As they watched the arm healed up until there was no sign that there had been any damage. She held her arm up the crowd to the sound of gasps.

The priest took the bowl to the girl and he nodded to the father who opened his daughter’s mouth. Sekhmet’s blood was poured in to her mouth and he closed it again.

A few seconds passed and then the girl began to twitch. She coughed and opened her eyes to smile at her dad.

“Father.”

A cheer went up in the crowd. Lynsey felt Illyara’s hand leave hers.

Sekhmet cured thirty people that day. Each one went through the ritual. Lynsey watched the rapt faces of the people around her. They believed. They would do anything for that woman right now. If anyone tried anything here then they would be set upon before they got within a few yards. Not that they could get any closer with all of the crowds.

Arkan took her hand and they walked away. It was time to join the others. By the time they got to the park it was already getting dark but they found the others easily. The park was full of strangers from outlying cities and villages but the nomads were gathered on the eastern edge of the park near the lake. They were greeted like long lost friends.

They found Illyara waiting with her parents. Within the tents there was no need to be invisible. The people seemed subdued.

“Did you go to see the Temple?”

“We did, there is a woman there who calls herself Sekhmet like you call me. She healed a few people and made a few more converts. I can’t see the city revolting any time soon.”

“We heard. She was there all those years ago when they captured the dragon. A woman fighter-priest was hurt in the capture and they slashed the dragon at the same time. His blood cured her. That is why they captured him. They must have found a way to prolong her life. They said she looked old though.”

“She did. If I didn’t know better I would say she was about eighty. She looked frail but I think that was an act because she definitely didn’t look frail when I met her in the Temple. Anything but!”

“Then the dragon’s blood cannot make her immortal only slow the aging process down. It will mean that she won’t be able to fight you very well. If nothing else if we fail she cannot last that much longer.”

“Two hundred years at eighty? If she would have lived to a hundred that would be twenty years at the old rate and a lot more at the prolonged rate.”

66.666 years by my calculations.” Pico helpfully supplied.

“She could live another 66 years at least!”

“We can’t get into the Temple. There are too many people and even when the festival has gone, they’ve made sure the city is loyal to them.”

“There is another problem,” Lynsey said. ”Even if we were to break into the Temple in some way the dragon wouldn’t fit through the door. The Temple must have been built around the Dragon.”

“If that is the case then it will be more difficult than anticipated.

“If only he could breathe fire like in the myths.” Lynsey joked. ”We need a demolition squad to get him out. Wait” An idea formed in her head. “Do you have explosives here?”

“I can see what you are thinking, Lynsey.” Pico was whirling around her brain like an excited toddler. Sometimes she forgot he was less than a month old.

“No, there is nothing that will blast the door open if that is what you mean. We have nothing that will heat stone enough to catch fire.” Arkan was laughing at her.

“In my world when they want to bring down a building they use explosives. It’s a powder that when you light it up, it explodes.”

“Do you know how to make this?”

“No, but I can work it out. I read a lot when I was younger there must be something there that will help me. Those years in chemistry class must have taught me something.”

We need somewhere with very thick walls to mask the sounds when I am experimenting and we’ll need somewhere close to the temple so we can dig under it. We can blast in to it and then use the explosive to get him out. We’ll have to be ready to leave when it happens. I don’t think ‘Sekhmet’ will be very happy for her source of power to fly away.“

“I know of just such a place that will be perfect for both conditions.’

Later that day, Arkan led them to a house opposite the temple. It was made from the same stone and once contained a shop on the ground floor and living space on the second. They entered through the back and moved straight into the basement.

“Is this good enough?”

“Perfect.” A quick look around the room and she said. “I need a working space; table, charcoal, saltpeter and sulfur and a pestle and mortar. We’ll also need picks, shovels and a lot of luck!”

“I can do most of that, I’m not sure where to get the Saltpetre from.”

“I read that you can get it from bat poo?”

“Bats?”

“I sometimes forget we’re not on Earth anymore.” She went silent to talk to Pico. “Pico, where can I get Saltpetre from?

It’s potassium nitrate. We don’t have any bats on this world that I know of. …which also explains why he hasn’t heard of bats. Aha, a website you browsed when looking up Guy Fawkes mentioned that it appeared in caves naturally and they used it in the American Civil War.” Pico showed her the computer screen in her mind’s eyes.

“I don’t remember looking at that!”

It doesn’t matter you did look at it and everything you did look at, I can show you again.

“Arkan, you can get the saltpeter from caves. It’s a white crust. When you get me sulphur, saltpetre and charcoal it is important they don’t mix. Do you know where to get the sulphur from?”

“Yes, they use it to dye clothes. I’ll be back in a few hours.”

While Lynsey was rearranging furniture, Mewlli arrived with a pestle and mortar and containers with lids. Behind him were several others each with a spade and pick. Lynsey pointed to the wall nearest the temple.

“We’re going to dig a tunnel into the temple to get to the dragon. We will then break down the walls so the dragon can escape.”

They broke through the foundations within hours. Lynsey wiped the sweat from her forehead. Working in this heat wasn’t pleasant but he had to show that she was prepared to do the hard stuff as well.

Arkan came back as promised with a sack each of what she asked for.

“How did you find the saltpetre?”

“I realised that the farmers might have used it for fertilizer so I took a bag from the warehouse. It shouldn’t be missed.”

Lynsey picked up a scoop and took a scoopful of the saltpetre and ground in the mortar with the pestle and put the ground powder into a container. She did the same for the other two powders.

“I need a spark to show how this will catch fire.”

Arkan brought out a fire drill and produced hot embers. He dropped them into the container and there was a whoosh.

The boys in the corner exclaimed and carried on digging faster.

They dug all night and all morning until they heard people gathering outside for the Sekhmet ritual. Several of the men went out to watch while the others carried on. A few hours later and some of the men did not come back. Lynsey worked combining different portions of the mixture until she got the best result. There was a shout and Mewlli came up from the tunnel.

“We’ve done it. We are underneath the tunnel. What now?”

“I need Illyara to do her bit.”

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape
Chapter 26 - Gathering
Chapter 27 - Search
Chapter 28 - Temple Camp
Chapter 29 - Decision
Chapter 30 - Baserius

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 30 – BASERIUS (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 30 – baserius

Baserius gripped his pen until his knuckles went white. One night. It had taken one bloody night for them to lose the girl. They were a bunch of imbeciles. He was furious. It was not only that Lynsey was gone but that he had been wrenched from the ritual before its completion. His jaw jutted forward as he gritted his teeth. Things were starting to unravel. Without the girl they wouldn’t be able to find the pyramids. Another source of the elixir was gone and the Brethren had seen a ritual incomplete but there would be no consequences. A hundred years of tradition was in jeopardy.

The catalogue of problems the brothers were recounting was not serving to quell his temper only fuel it. The brother talking carried on oblivious.

“During the fire she escaped on the yelks.”

“This should not have been enough for her to escape.” Didn’t you even put a guard on her tent?”

The priest looked nervous. “We did but she escaped by digging a hole in the sand. She had to have had help.”

*How did she have help?” Baserius voice took on a silken quality.

“One of the guards was overpowered by her. She can fight in a way never seen before with just her hands and body. The guard saw another female with her. She looked like a nomad.”

“illyara.” So that is where she got to. ”Didn’t you think to check your hirelings for anyone that could betray us?”

“We only had the night to prepare, sir.” The priest looked to his friend for help but none was forthcoming. “In any case we employed no women. She did not travel with our camp.”

“So she followed with her tribe. Even the nomads, think twice before entering the desert alone.”

You did send someone to follow them and bring them back I take it?”

The other Brother coughed and answered.

“There were no footprints and we have collected all the yelks. They are nowhere to be found.” He lowered his gaze to the ground.

Baserius thought for a moment his gaze looking through the men in front of him.

“There is no doubt it was the nomads then. They must think they have their Sekhmet. That is unfortunate. We started that myth to keep them in their place not to incite them to a revolution.” Baserius stood up suddenly, forcing the two priests in front to jerk up on to their feet. The pen he had been holding fell to the floor. “I think it is time to bring out our own Sekhmet.”

“Is that wise Sir?”

Baserius’ head whipped around at the audacity of the man.

“Are you questioning my judgement?”

The man’s face turned pale and he took an involuntary step back. Baserius ignored him, his gaze returning to the distance.

“I believe it is time for our leader to come out of retirement.” The priests prostrated themselves on the floor and left. The sounds of the camp dismantling outside disguised their departure. Before they left to return to Ghinari he would need to implement a gruelling ritual, partly to appease the Gods but also to distract his people. The last thing he needed was anyone thinking.

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape
Chapter 26 - Gathering
Chapter 27 - Search
Chapter 28 - Temple Camp
Chapter 29 - Decision

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 29 – DECISION (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 29 – DECISION

There were seven tribes, Lynsey was told. A whirlwind of new faces flew past her over the next two hours. The wizened old elders introduced themselves to her first. They discussed what they wanted, their histories and their fears. They were tired, she could see that in the dancing light from the campfires. Tired of the nomadic life but there was a glow about them, they were happy at an end in sight. They touched her arms, her shoulders and her face in gratitude.

She didn’t mind she was surprised to find. At home she shied from close contact. It felt fake there but here – these people were genuine – kind, they meant no harm. As more and more nomads introduced themselves, cousins all. She did not feel a stranger but part of their family. Her muscles ached from the smiling and she could feel Pico getting restless in the back of her mind. There had been something missing in her life for so long and she hadn’t known what it was. A sense of purpose had eluded her until now. Maybe this was what she was born for. Maybe there were no accidents. How could you be an accidental immortal anyway? Pico was right. Who knew how many years they would be on this planet before she found her way home? Even if that were possible. She may never see her family again but she could have another. These people could be her family in this world. She felt a sense of belonging that she hadn’t felt in a long time.

They talked until the first fingers of daylight crawled along the ground towards the oasis and Lynsey was shattered. She could barely keep her eyes open but she felt that she needed some time alone. She stifled a yawn while she stood up, apologising to the elders she was talking to and went for a walk. She moved further into the densely packed trees to find herself back in the spot where she had met Illyara. Even in the dark the oasis was a beautiful place. The darkness lent an air of mystery that soothed her soul. The only sounds she could hear were the occasional splash as an animal took a drink or hunted for food. There was nothing that could harm her here – not with the tribes so close. She relaxed and sat on a fallen tree. She lay back against a vertical jutting branch for a few minutes staring at the quiet water. It was so peaceful here. No one came to disturb her and she felt her thoughts turn to some sort of order. She had better be careful or she might find herself with a God Complex. Then again what was a god? The Pharaohs had called themselves gods, why couldn’t she?

“You can as long as you don’t begin to believe it.“ Pico replied.

“You’ll always be there to ground me won’t you.” She thought, sending little tendrils of pink thoughts to Pico to show she meant it in a nice way.

“I will. There is someone behind us by the way.”

Lynsey tensed. She just wanted a few moments to herself. Was that too much to ask? If she carried on looking at the water maybe they would take the hint and go away? Unfortunately whoever it was, decided to ignore the sign. She heard the rustle of leaves draw near. She was surprised how quiet the person was. The nomads had been moving through the oasis like a herd of elephants tonight.

“Spirits will do that to a person.” Was Pico’s dry thought.

“Look, I really need some time alone to have a think.” She said without turning. There was no answer so she looked up.

Arkan stood beside her gazing out on the water. Her heart swelled and she smiled involuntarily. He had come for her. But how?

“I thought I’d lost you.” He said.

“Me too.”

Arkan pulled her up towards him, gently taking her chin in his hand.

”I don’t want to lose you again. I’m sorry, I should have just taken you away at the ball.”

“I wouldn’t have gone. I don’t think either of us realised the danger.”

“You can’t go back. Come away with me. There are some islands to the west where no one has gone before. We can go exploring together”

Lynsey regarded him for a second. There was nothing she wanted more than to go with him, to leave it all behind but she had made a commitment. Besides she couldn’t betray her new family.

“I can’t. I promised I would free the dragon.”

“The dragon, the one in the Temple?”

“How did you know about that?”

“The king was sent a book by the brotherhood detailing their history and it mentioned a dragon. When I realised what they did to it, I ran to save you but they had already taken you.” He dropped her chin and turned to face the water again.

She looked out to see a small rabbit like creature move to the edge of the water. His voice startled her to look back at him.

“They use the blood to stay alive longer. They promised the king a share of the elixir in exchange for you. You would have been put in with the dragon and bled for an eternity.”

Lynsey took a sharp breath. She believed him. Baserius had been unable to look her in the eyes whenever he spoke to her. The other brothers avoided her. Now she knew why and it wasn’t because she was a woman. How many of them knew what they planned for her? She shuddered in the gloom.

He grabbed her shoulders, “Come away. This fight is not yours! We can go away and be free!”

“No, what if it had been me captured all those years ago? The dragon needs a friend. You can join us.”

Arkan made as if to say no, but the life he had planned when he thought he had lost her seemed foolish now. He wouldn’t be able to forget her. If he didn’t help her now and she was captured or somehow killed then he would never forgive himself. He watched as the soft light of the sunrise danced on her features. The exquisite beauty of a new morning blended with the bravery of the legendary lioness god on the pin he wore on his shirt. He had sworn to serve Sekhmet. This girl was the living embodiment of the God and he loved her. He would go wherever she would lead him.

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape
Chapter 26 - Gathering
Chapter 27 - Search
Chapter 28 - Temple Camp

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 28 – TEMPLE CAMP (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 28 – temple camp

Arkan’s body swung from side to side in a rolling motion. He woke to find his thoughts buffeted by clouds of uncertainty. He lay there, thinking through cotton wool, enjoying the sensation of movement until he felt the first stirrings of a headache forming. Within seconds he went from comfortable to his head pounding. The sunshine heating through his black clothing was no longer a pleasure but torture. Thirst assaulted his mouth, forcing him to open his eyes, almost gagging with his need for water. He blinked in the harsh light, sitting up to cough while rubbing his eyes at the same time. The movement unbalanced him and he fell down again under the Yelks uneven gait. He tried again. Where was he? He was still thinking through a thick fog. Before he could piece together the previous night, he found himself pitching forward out of the hammock to land face down in a pile of sand.

A burst of laughter greeted him and he propped himself up on his elbows, spitting out dry sand. Who was that! A burst of pain throbbed in his head at the movement and he pushed a palm in to his forehead. He obviously wasn’t in mortal danger or he would be dead already. Gods, he hadn’t drunk that much in years. He groaned audibly. He didn’t care who heard him. Acid rose in the back of his throat. He felt as sick as a dog.

The laughing was attached to a long shadow. The shadow ended at expensive brown boots. He stretched his neck out following the sound up. Who in all the hells was that? He reached for his sleeve but fought the impulse to test his blades before he pulled one out. Didn’t the man know who he was?  The hangover pounded in his head with renewed vigour and he squinted harder. A young man dressed slightly better for an expedition than he was, in light loose clothing which looked like it came from a fashionable tailor, stood watching him. Arkan’s curiosity got the better of him.

“How are you prepared for this trip? How did you know about it? The brothers were only recruiting last night. You didn’t have time to go to a tailor.”

The boy looked at him, still laughing and shook his head. “No, I was going to join a nomad group and go exploring with them. It was either that or join the army. I needed to get out of the city for a while and the brotherhood offered me a way.” He held out his hand, pointing with the other. “Come on, we’ll be left behind if we don’t watch it.” The yelks were already several feet ahead of them.

“My name is…“ Arkan thought for a second stumbling to his feet. He changed his mind. His name was a little too well known in Ghinari. “Finton, Finton Wylde.” Arkan took his hand and they clasped like old friends.

“My name is Ryen Bergarde. How do you do.”

“Southerner?” Enquired Arkan.

“How did you know?”

“You are just too polite to have been born and brought up in Ghinari.”

“I see your point.” the man began to laugh again.

Arkan stayed at the back with Ryen all day. It was nice not having to worry about doing anything. Just do what you’re told with no expectations. It was like being a lowly palace guard again. The man was good company. He seemed to have memorised hundreds of jokes and while the majority of them Arkan didn’t find funny, they did lighten the day.

Through the miles he had ample opportunity to look around as they walked. The sand dunes in the distance stretched to the horizon. Closer, the guards recruited the night before were easy to spot, even though they were heavily outnumbered by the Brethren. Spread throughout the party there were about twenty guards in all. Their dour expressions made him happy he had paired with his new friend.

“Why are you here?” Ryen asked, bringing Arken out of his reverie.

“I needed to get away too.”

Ryen nodded and went quiet and they walked on in companiable silence.

The company began setting up camp long before sunset. When Arkan saw them unloading the yelks he realised why. They had brought luxuries from home which had no place in a desert. Why would you bring real beds? He could only shake his head at their idiocy. Still there were no beds for the guards, just bed rolls which had seen better days. Did they steal them off the homeless? He picked up his with distaste.

“Where did they get these from, the time of the pharaohs?”

Ryen held his up with thumb and forefinger, inspecting it. “It does smell like it my friend. It is a good thing I brought my own.“

That was the second time Arken could have cheerfully taken his blades out.

Around them, the other guards were helping the Brothers erect smaller tents for men like them while larger, spacious abodes were put up for the priests.

A parade of cushions, bedding, beds and even tables were carried passed them. Arkan took a step back. Maybe it would be better if he found somewhere to lie low until everything was ready.

“You there.”

Arkan looked behind him but the brother was obviously talking to him.

“Sir?”

“Yes, you. Pick up some firewood from Brother Dhras and start building a fire for dinner.”

Arkan bristled but he pushed his annoyance down. He didn’t want to give the brother an excuse to send him away. They were still close enough to Ghinari that it was a possibility.

He found Brother Dhras unloading some sticks from one of several yelks who carried them. The number of yelks had ballooned to about fifty while he had been asleep. The brother pointed to the wood on the floor and turned back to unloading the yelk. Charming, he thought, Then he realized, he must have taken the vow of silence. Grumbling under his breath Arkan lifted a handful and carried them to the centre of the camp where a nascent fire was burning.

Arkan dumped the wood from his third trip to the yelk on to the ground and wiped the sweat off his forehead. Even though the sun was low in the sky, it was still warm. The breeze coming from the west was welcome. If he was honest with himself he wasn’t used to this kind of labour. His hand froze in mid-air as he caught sight of blond hair reflected in fire-light. Lynsey was here? He dropped behind a man wrestling a cook pot into place over the fire and scrambled over the sand to hide behind some urns. He watched her from across the flames.

What in all the hells was she doing here? Maybe fate was telling him there was a chance for them after all. It was ridiculous but he couldn’t help but hope. Arkan grabbed the edge of his hood, pulling it up with a swift movement as he hunkered down. The cook gave him a curious look but the water was starting to boil and he turned back to throw a handful of oats in the pot. Arkan peaked around the man to get another look, then another double-take. It was definitely Lynsey. Should he tell her he was here? Before he could decide, Baserius moved into view and Arkan dropped down again. What was he doing here? This was all he needed. He glimpsed Baserius directing her to a tent as they walked past and Arkan scurried backwards to keep out of sight. He wasn’t ready for him to see him yet. Standing up he pulled his hood down as far as it would go and walked in the opposite direction. He was going to have to find a job to do at the other side of camp.

Brushing the yelk down, he danced back as the great head rounded to bite him. Not this time my friend, he thought. His upper arm from the previous two nips was still throbbing. His mind raced. How could he rescue her? If he escaped with her now, he wouldn’t be able to find his way back. He would have to bide his time and rescue her when they got to their destination or when they got back to Ghinari he concluded. He couldn’t let what happened to that dragon in the story happen to her.

That night he grabbed his bed roll from the tent floor. Ryen rolled over on his.

“What are you doing?”

“I want to sleep with the stars tonight.”

“I know what you want to sleep with and it isn’t the stars. I saw you looking at that blonde girl earlier. Leave it, she’ll be nothing but trouble, besides she’s too skinny and her skin is too light. It would be like making love to a ghost.”

“Ha, ha. It has nothing to do with her. I do not like to feel confined.”

“And, I do not believe you, my friend. I heard that this expedition is to find the riches of the pyramids. It should be easy to liberate a jewel or two and then you can have any girl you want in Ghinari. Although I would be surprised to hear you have any trouble judging by how the woman were looking at you as we left Ghinari. It was like sweet nectar taken from a baby!”

Arkan refused to dignify him with a response.

Moments later, Arkan sat in the shadow of a tent taking a sip from a flask with a full view of her tent. Maybe he should let her know she was here? He discarded the notion. No she could betray him without realising and that would put them both in danger.

He followed the same pattern for a week. He lay on the bed roll at an angle to see both the front and back of her tent. He lay there looking up at the stars when he heard a sound he couldn’t identify coming from her tent. He twisted to see sand mysteriously moving by itself. He watched fascinated. How was it doing that? Was there a burrowing animal there? Why had it picked Lynsey’s tent? He continued to watch and was surprised to see her come out a few minutes later with Illyara. He was even more surprised to see a little boy disappear in front of his eyes He rubbed his them, but he was no longer there. The boy had appeared and then disappeared.

They crept past Arkan, not noticing him sitting in the shadows in his black clothing. He watched impressed as Lynsey dispatched a guard with ease and silently got up to follow them when the fire started. Keep your eyes on the girl he told himself. Everything else is a distraction.

They were clever these nomads. He watched as they wiped away their footsteps as they walked and who knew they could disappear like that?

He kept in the distance, crawling on the sand so they wouldn’t see him. Copying them, he waggled his legs behind him to level the sand. Hours later, before he knew it, he saw them go into another encampment. He wasn’t sure about the reception he would get so he waited outside, sipping from a skin that hung around his waist. He didn’t know how long he would have to stay there or how long his water would last.

 

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape
Chapter 26 - Gathering
Chapter 27 - Search

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 27 – SEARCH (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 27 – sEARCH

Arkan reached the Contee ball to find Lynsey had already gone. He scanned the crowd for her unusual blond hair. Where was she? He spotted the king in the distance with his attendants but didn’t cross the floor to join him. One of the King’s guards was handing him his cape. Good, he was planning to leave.

Arkan kept to the opposite side of the room, making sure there were dancers between him and the king’s entourage at all times. He had a feeling that something wasn’t right when he first stepped into the ballroom and he trusted his gut instinct enough to not risk talking to the king until he knew why he felt like he did. Usually, men flocked around Lynsey and her companion like flies to a yelk but there were no clusters of men and nearby disgruntled ladies. She was notable by their absence.

He moved from room to room, chatting to a lady here and a gentleman there. If the king didn’t suspect anything he had to keep up pretences. He fared no better upstairs. The muscles in his face and belly tightened. He was beginning to feel jumpy. No one was willing to tell him what happened. He knew she was coming tonight and not even Luna would arrive this late. He couldn’t even find the servants he kept on his payroll. A shiver of uncertainty swept through him. The king couldn’t know about all his informants. They were either avoiding him or worse. He didn’t want to think about that fate. Spying on the king was treason.

Then he spied Jarek hovering near a doorway. He beckoned the man with his finger. The man blinked and hurried forward, picking up a jug and a glass from a nearby table as he bypassed courtiers with ease.

“Do you know where Lady Walker is?” Arkan was careful to keep his voice light. The man’s bearing showed he was nervous.

Jarek began to pour into the glass. “She was taken by the King’s guards, Sir.”

“How long ago?”

“More than a half hour. Is there anything else?” He offered the glass.

Arkan burned to ask more questions but he didn’t want to delay the man any more than he should. There were already a few curious glances directed their way.

“Do you know where they took her?”

“I’m sorry Sir, I heard nothing from them that would give her location away.” Arkan inwardly seethed but he knew Jarek would tell him if he knew anything. He took the glass and waved the back of his other hand as if the man was of no consequence to him. Jarek nodded, relaxing his shoulders as he walked backwards a couple of feet before turning to take his place again.

Arkan took a draught from the glass and sauntered to the window. He leant against the ledge, letting the cool breeze ruffle his fringe. The sound of shorn hooves on pebbles drew his attention down and he gripped the stone hard as he recognised who was there. In the courtyard, the king was stepping into a small carriage. It was only large enough to carry one occupant. There were a couple  of shouts and the horses began to trot away from the house with the guards running alongside. These were the elite guards he noted. Their black uniforms resembled his own. He shivered and took another sip of his wine. They were the only men that Arkan was wary of. He had been bested many times in mock combat by one of their guard when training. In the darkness, when wearing black, they were practically invisible. The only warning of their arrival were the whites of their eyes.

Arkan tore his gaze from the empty courtyard. Lynsey wasn’t here and she wasn’t with the king.

Arkan put his glass down with regret. It was a good vintage but he needed to clear his thoughts. He ran down and around to the back of the building where his horse was waiting, still saddled from his arrival. He stopped between the horse and the wall and pounded his fists on the stone in frustration. They must have taken her to the Temple. It was the only place they would go but there were far too many guards to deal with on his own. He hissed and threw back his head as his knuckles sent shooting pain to his brain in revenge for their beating. He gritted his teeth and sucked his hand. He needed to find Luna.

He re-entered the palace but again no one knew or would admit where she was. Jarek was nowhere to be found either. Probably the wisest course of action mused Arkan. Lady Khaen gave him a small wave  by the buffet table and he smiled back.

“My lady, you look beautiful as always.” She giggled as he knew she would.

“Thank you Arkan. Are you looking for Luna? She left moments after the king. But,” She moved closer letting him get a good look down her low cut bodice. “I am still here.”

If he had not met Lynsey, he would have been tempted. Her skin reminded him of the best dark chocolate. Her hazel eyes promised him anything he wanted – all he had to do was ask. But she was of the Contee family and if he had learnt anything from his youth, it was not to mess with one of the most powerful families in the land.

He bowed to thank her and kissed her hand lingering for a moment. Her perfume was heady.

“My lady, I am on the King’s business this night. I would give a ransom to spend time with you, but I must go.”

She narrowed her eyes. Had she noticed him avoiding the king earlier? Arkan straightened letting her hand fall from his.

“Another time, my lady?”

She nodded and he relaxed. That was close. That would be all he needed, to insult a Contee. He bowed again and rushed off.

An uncomfortable idea crept into his thoughts as he rounded a corner. Had Luna had something to do with Lynsey’s kidnapping as well? He ran back to his horse and jumped on her, wheeling her around in the direction of Luna’s house, He sped down the road as if a horde of devils were after him.

He pulled on the reins at the entrance to Luna’s driveway. His horse whinnied but acquiesced, bending down to eat some fresh grass growing against the gate.

The moonlight was bright and he could see the house clearly from his vantage point but there were no lights in the house. He sat on the horse and contemplated the dark building. It wasn’t just that there were no lights in the reception or bedrooms but there wasn’t illumination in any of the rooms. Not even the servants’ quarters. The uncomfortable thought resurfaced. Was she part of the new alliance? Who else was? Could he trust anyone? One man could not go against the King, Baserius and the closed ranks of the nobility. He thought he could count her as his friend. He felt betrayed. Still, he knew it wasn’t her fault – that she couldn’t have done anything else if asked by the king. She had taken a risk helping as much as she had. She held her power at the aegis of the king. If she went against him then she would lose her position and possibly money judging by her husband’s business. He berated himself, he had been foolish to trust her. He knew her circumstances, her capabilities. He had known them before he had contrived to meet her. She was one of the strongest women in all of Ghinari but even she had to bend her principles in the face of survival. She was gone, there was nothing he could do about that now. He needed a drink.

Arkan made his way to the Dragon Arms. It was a small inn with a clientele that didn’t ask questions as long as you didn’t ask them first. Turning his jacket inside out to look scruffier and kicking loose mud off his shoes on the front step he regarded the tap room with caution. It was full of the usual suspects. Perfect, he thought with an inward smile. No one would bother him here. He slunk down, altering his posture to bend into a stoop and drew his hood over his head. He moved through the crowd, affecting the clumsy walk of someone who had already imbibed too much. He strode with an aggression he didn’t feel but needed to display. The music was loud and jarring but strangely soothed his nerves. Seeing a target, he barged into the arm of a young man he judged to be about twenty, half-way between a boy and a man. He fingered the tip of a knife up his sleeve even though he knew he would not need it. The youth dropped his drink on his companion who squealed as the red liquid ran down her pale yellow skirts. A woman of substance, Arkan thought, surprised to see the quality of her dress and nobility of the woman’s accent as she yelled at the boy. He must be trying to impress his new girl. Was it a bet? Arkan looked again at the rich cut of the young man’s cloth. He should not have brought her here. No matter how much he wagered. A cleaning bill was he least of his worries if he interacted with the wrong people here. He was doing the idiot a favour. The boy turned ready to throw a punch but Arkan was ready with a snarl, using all the pent up emotions he had been holding back over the last few days. The boy pulled back his arm. Just try, Arkan thought, daring him with his eyes. The youth hesitated, looked from him to his companions for moment and then apologised. Maybe the boy would reach twenty one after all. Arkan growled at his circle of friends daring anyone else to intervene. There must have been something in his expression because they didn’t.

He moved past and selected a table where he could sit with his back to the wall. He leant against the cool stone letting the open fire heat his bones from the front. He half opened an eye-lid.

“Ale!” He shouted at a passing wench, closing his eye again. Wench. What a horrible word. Before tonight he would have thought nothing of using it, he mused darkly. One chit of a girl and he was questioning everything. Nothing seemed solid. The ancient rivalry between king and brotherhood was over. Luna had disappeared and the woman he loved captured and maybe killed. He jerked cutting his fingertip on the blade he was playing with. Did he love her? He sucked his finger out of habit. He rolled the idea around in his brain. Could he love someone he had only known for a few days? She was attractive but so had so many women he had bedded over the years and he had never even remotely felt the emotion he did for this girl.

The serving woman came over and planted a flagon on the table with a bang and waited patiently for him to notice. He let her wait for a moment, savouring her annoyance, knowing she was waiting for a tip. He opened an eye and looked blearily at her before handed over a coin. She sneered at it but took it anyway sashaying over to a man with richer clothes and a looser purse.

Arkan took a swig and pictured Lynsey as he had last seen her. Her long blond hair flowing down her back. Her dress hinting at the delights under it. His pleasure at her touch still taunted him and the pain when she broke away. Gods, he wanted to protect her.

Three flagons later and he was slowly falling into the numb state he craved. He barely registered when some brothers walked in but the level of sound in the room dropped. Arkan raised his head from his arms looking for the source. He noted one of the brothers was talking to the man he barged into earlier. He was offering work for an expedition. Did they not see the boy’s clothing? He had no need for money and while an adventure would impress the girl, if he left, another would take his place over the months when he was gone.

Why not? He thought in a drunken stupor. Maybe he needed a career change. It’s not like he changed anything when he did kill anyone. If he removed a criminal another took his place and that was if the man or woman was bad. The soft hand of guilt was massaging his conscience. How many of those he had killed were just obstacles in the king’s path?

He’d never thought about it before. Training will do that for you, he thought darkly. When had he ever had the time to think it through? You like the luxury of the job the small voice of his conscience informed him. It wasn’t that but no one had ever told him to think differently before Lynsey. He’d always taken what he wanted when he wanted. That is what everyone did if they could. It wasn’t wrong. Then why did he want to protect her so badly?

The brothers had also come to the wrong place, Arkan thought with humour. No one here would lift a finger for an honest day’s wage and less than that was what they were offering. The honour of Sekhmet was worth Jack shit here.

About to ask for another flagon of ale, Arkan paused. Lynsey was gone, the king had to know he was the one that rescued her the other night and if he didn’t Luna would probably tell him. He needed to get out of town. Maybe this was the answer. Get a guard’s job for a couple of months and then come back when everything had blown over. He had enough money that he could buy a parcel of land out in the country and no one would come looking for him. Lynsey was gone and there was nothing he could do about it but make sure he didn’t suffer the same fate but he did need to disappear for a while just in case. He put his flagon down and stood up almost toppling as the waves of drink rose to his head.

He stumbled out of the inn with the door slamming behind him. A brother straggling behind the others ahead turned at the noise. Arkan raised his hand in a half salute.

“I’ll take your money.” He slurred.

The other brothers turned, looking disgusted at his state but the closest, moved nearer wincing at the smell of ale on Arkan’s breath.

“He’s a drunk.” One of the brothers whispered.

I can hear you, Arkan thought, thinking better of saying it out loud.

“We don’t have a choice.”  Another hissed. “We have hardly any volunteers. Do you want to tell Baserius?”

The man curled his lip at the picture Arkan made before him. Arkan held his breath. Would they take him? Did he really care? Before he had a chance to think any more on the subject, the first replied to him.

“Sekhmet thanks you.” He said striding forward and placing a pin on Arkan’s shirt “Be at the city gates by dawn. We leave at sunrise.”

“Absolutely, count me in.” He saluted again.

Arkan looked down at the pin on his front. It bore the figure of a woman with a lion’s face. He heard the brother walk away in the direction of another tavern.

He traced the lion’s mane surrounding the face with his finger. He may as well make his way there now. There was nowhere for him to go here. Home was not safe and he had everything he needed to survive. A blade or two and his wits. Arkan followed the brothers from a distance, keeping to the shadows out of habit. They went from inn to inn but only seemed to manage to get one maybe two recruits at each place. It was a poor showing and it showed how the Temple’s influence had deteriorated over the years.

Once they had enough men, they returned to the temple and he saw the recruiters help their brethren to put together the caravan for the trip ahead. He lounged in the doorway of the inn down the street. His hood was still up and he played with his blade in his hand as he watched. He was beginning to sober up and was starting to feel the shadow of a headache forming.

When they left the building he followed them to the city gates where they began loading the yelks with the provisions they brought from the temple.

There were about fifteen yelks and a few were already loaded up. He could offer to help with the rest he thought, but no, he hadn’t been hired for that. Between two yelks he spied a cloth hammock which was strapped around each yelk’s belly. It was filled with cloth and looked very inviting, the luxuries that some in the brotherhood could not do without. Stifling a yawn Arkan climbed up and snuggled between bags of bedding. Perfect and he wouldn’t even be forgotten. Thrilled with his cleverness he fell asleep with a smile on his lips.

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape
Chapter 26 - Gathering

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 26 – GATHERING (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 26 – GATHERING

As the orange fingers of dawn crawled along the desert landscape, the tribe broke camp. Lynsey had already swapped the garish dress the Brothers had given her for one of Illyara’s. It was definitely more suited to walking distances but then sitting on a yelk meant the long dress hadn’t been a trip issue with the Brothers. She rubbed her face as she trudged on. They had talked with Illyara’s father for hours last night and she was exhausted. Her bones felt as if they had been filled with heavy metal. Each step was a struggle.

“Pico? Could you take over for a while?” It was worth a try, she’d give anything for a sleep.

I do not think that would be a good idea Lynsey. I understand you need sleep but it would be a slippery slope for me to take over when things get too hard. Your body needs sleep as well as your mind. If I did this I suspect I would be doing it more and more.”

Great, she thought, stifling a yawn. It had been worth a try though. No harm no foul as the Americans would say. She straightened her back and copied Illyara’s gait as they climbed yet another dune.

They were miles away before they felt safe enough to make camp again. The call had gone out to the rest of the tribe that there was a meeting and the tent was again packed. Full of young and old jostling for position to hear their leaders and Lynsey speak. They sat on bright cushions brought in from the other tents. The floor was an enormous patterned mosaic as if put together by a colour-blind designer. As she thought this, she realised that she could see colours properly for the first time. Reds and greens popped out next to blues and purples. Her jaw dropped at the beauty. “I didn’t realise what I’ve been missing!

“Pardon?” Illyara replied sitting beside her.

“I can see colours!”

“Couldn’t you before?”

“Yes, but not like this.” Her voice was filled with wonder.

I’ve been working on changing your core code. I noticed there were bits missing and corrupted. That is why I have been so silent for so long. It’s hard work working through DNA sequences. I have to work small. A lot of what I have tried gets reversed, before I have finished changing it.” Pico’s voice sounded hurt.

“I thought I was stuck with how I arrived here.”

Technically that is true, but I’ve found I can make small changes at the molecular level and it sticks but too much and all the changes I make disappear and I have to start again.”

“Really? This is amazing.” She could see the colour of people’s eyes from across the room. “What else have you done?” She whispered.

Well as you asked, you should notice a marked improvement in your hearing and you might find that your sense of smell is better, although I’m still working on that one.”

“I don’t really want to smell any better. That happens during the,” She went cross-eyed for a moment, trying to think of a better way to say it. Oh, hell. There was no need to censor for Pico, she smiled at the thought. “time of the month. The amount of times I’ve nearly prayed to the porcelain god because someone was eating something stinky in front of me. If that happened all the time I would just be throwing up all over the place.”

Noted, I won’t mess with that sense anymore.”

“Could you not mess with any more of my senses, please?”

Why not?

“Because there is a reason that humans developed their sense in a certain way and messing about with that could have uncertain consequences. Surely you can see that? My chucking up example should give you a clue!”

I concede.”

That was easy. “Good.”

“Sekhmet has come back to us.” Shouted a voice. Lynsey twisted and identified it as Illyara’s father, Darun. Everyone clapped around her.

“What? Who is Sekhmet?”

The lion headed Goddess of fire, war and healing. Interesting I can see where they get that from.”

“You are.” Illyara replied, her eyes shining in the candlelight. “We have waited years for you to come. There was a prophecy that you would arrive. We need you to help us rescue a dragon. You can lead us and the other tribes against the brotherhood and the king and take back what is rightfully ours.”

“What is rightfully yours?”

“Freedom. We are trapped in the desert, moving from one place to another so that we cannot be forced to fight for the king in distant wars. We have to hide what we can do. Our people have lived in the desert for centuries. They have been here so long that they have no concept that there is another way to live. Water and food should not be rationed as the city would have us believe. War and power makes it so and it is time to change.

Lynsey stood up, nervous to be standing in front of so many people. Illyara nodded at her, still seated on the royal blue cushion besider her. “I’m not Sekhmet, I’m just Lynsey.” She coughed, clearing her throat. “I am from another world but I am not a Goddess. I arrived here by accident not by design. I’ve just stumbled from one thing to another. I really don’t belong here, all I want to do is go home.”

Do you know, I wouldn’t mind that either.” Pico whispered in her consciousness. “We will do that but we have to help these people.”

“Why are you on their side?” Whispered Lynsey.

We may be on this world for a very long time. Do you want it to be a heaven or a hell?”

They think I am Sekhmet. What if they want me to do a miracle or something?” She switched to thought at some curious glances.

They don’t seem to be that kind of people. They haven’t really said what they want you to do yet.”

Lynsey pondered for a moment. What was a god anyway? It was just a label. If she was honest from the beginning, then what could go wrong?

“I am not Sekhmet, but I will help you.”

The nomads looked from one to the other and they grinned, she would help them.

****

“Where are we going now? Asked Lynsey struggling to climb up the steep sandy bank after Illyara.

“Back to the Oasis where you first met us. Messengers have been sent far and wide for all the tribes to meet there.”

“Why there?”

“It is holy and more practical. It is the biggest oasis this side of the desert. Our yelks will need to drink and stock up on water and we will need to be somewhere safe to talk that won’t draw attention to our numbers.”

They walked for two more days at a faster pace than with the temple but water still had to be rationed and everyone had a skin which contained enough water for the day. Lynsey pushed the container on to her belt. She was still thirsty but Illyara had warned her to take sips now and again rather than gulps. Her thoughts were fuzzy under the heat and thirst and she could see the others were feeling it too. The sun was relentless. It was with tremendous relief when they arrived at the oasis at night fall the next day. The smell of camp fires burning throughout the oasis reached them as they approached and they could hear people singing.

“We won’t bother with making the tents up here. We don’t need to put up walls during a Gathering.”

“How did everyone get here before us?”

“We sent messengers on wedasi. It is the fastest way to travel in the desert.”

“Why don’t you ride them all the time?”

Illyara looked horrified. “That would be dangerous. The wedasi would eat anyone that dared to ride them without training.”

“What are the Wedasi again?”

“Two headed serpent like creatures.”

Lynsey paused skin half-way to her mouth. I met one of those when I first arrived here. Why didn’t I see any of them while we were travelling to Ghinari?” They passed a family of nomads unrolling some fur on the floor for beds.

“They always travel a distance behind with their trainers.” A woman to their side offered a fresh skein of water. Illyara took it with a bow and a whispered thanks.

“I can understand why.” Replied Lynsey with feeling. Illyara gave her a strange look but carried on, dodging some children running past.

As they made their way through the camp, Lynsey noticed people were roaming to and from different fires with skins full of drink. From the gait of some of the revellers, Lynsey was pretty sure that not all, if any, of the skins contained water.

“I thought you didn’t drink?”

“What gave you that idea?”

“At the house, you didn’t drink the brandy?”

“I didn’t feel comfortable drinking in that company.” Illyara winked and drank deeply from the skin. “Would you like some?”

Lynsey took it. As long as it wasn’t vodka, she knew she would like it. She raised it to her lips and chugged it down. Her eyes watered and she stopped breathing for a moment. She coughed once and then couldn’t stop. The men nearest started laughing.

“What is that?”

“Reasse.”

Lynsey glared at her and Illyara replied laughing.

“It’s fermented yelk milk. The taste takes a little getting used to.”

The other tribes had left a space beside the river. There were several curious glances at her blond hair but no one approached her and she was able to move freely through the crowds. There were hundreds of tribesman already there and more were arriving every hour.

Darun and his wife were organising the gathering area. To the right of Illyara’s tribe’s area, there was a clearing in between the desert and the water. It was filled with stones styled in a half-moon pattern. Illyara caught Lynsey looking at the stones.

“The Elders will sit on the stones and everyone else will stand in a semi-circle around them.” Illyara’s arm swept out towards the stones.

“If someone from the crowd needs to speak, they stand and face the semi-circle.”

“Do the elders need to stand as well?” Lynsey watched as an elderly lady hobbled towards them.

“Oh no, they raise their arm and we listen.”

Young men were working among the stones, clearing the ground of roots, weeds and loose vegetation. In front of the stones. They laid tent material inside the half-circle. On the stones themselves they placed cushions made from a deep blue material. They appeared to be made for the seating as they were the exact size of the stone they were placed on. As each stone was covered, an elder would take their place from the crowd which was beginning to form.

Others prepared lamps and hung them from trees and placed them on the ground between brightly coloured cushions. The effect was surprisingly intimate for the number of people there. A young man, skin in one hand and a sweet treat in the other stumbled through some already seated tribespeople. He stood on a hand but the woman, just smiled and pulled him down to sit beside her.

“There is a lot of drunk people here. How are you going to have a meeting like that?”

“No one is seriously drunk and those that are, are only stopping their voices from being heard. That is their choice and their right.”

As the moons moved through the sky, Darun blew on a horn. The long low sound echoed soulfully in the stillness, sending chills down Lynsey’s back.

“That’s beautiful.” whispered Lynsey. Illyara smiled back at her.

Darun handed the horn to his wife and took a burning branch from Mewlli waiting nearby. He lit the first lamp and then a team of what Lynsey guessed were teenagers, took small branches and lit them from Darun’s to fan out and light all the lamps.

Lynsey moved to sit on the outside, next to the nomads surrounding the circle but Illyara gently took her hand and drew her to one of the stones near the front.

“Your place is here.”

Lynsey sat sheepishly looking at her satin slippers compared to the coarse leather of those around her. She had changed in to nomad robes but she hadn’t been ready to lose the shoes.  She realised how silly that was now.

They thought she was some ancient Egyptian God! How was she going to live up to that? She felt Pico sending soothing thoughts to her but she shook her head irritated and she stopped. Lynsey cocked her head to the side. She still hadn’t made up her mind whether Pico was a girl or a boy. He felt like a boy but that didn’t really make any sense.

Why is this so important to you Lynsey?”

“I don’t know, I just need to know whether to think of you as a he or she. It is doing my head in.”

How about a he then?”

“You want to be a he?”

Lynsey, it really doesn’t matter to me. There is no biological reason for me to be one way or another. From your memories you have historically got on well with males so I am happy to be a ‘he’ for you if that makes you feel better.

Shh. They are starting.” She thought back.

“We are gathered here today to fight for what has been taken from us all those centuries ago. They took our land, they took our lives and they took our dragon. We must fight now while the King and the brotherhood are fighting between themselves and the others. They are losing the war against the islands. They need men and money. The king will not be able to effectively fight on two fronts. If we join the fight then his empire will collapse. We have stopped the Temple from gaining the money from the pyramids by rescuing Lynsey Walker. If we unite and push on now we can win. This opportunity may not present itself again for centuries. We are the enemy within that they have forgotten about. But we still remember.” The crowd roared, stamping their feet into the ground.

“We need a leader, someone to show the way. We must rescue the dragon. He helped to defeat the priests in the beginning and protected us for years. Now it our turn to rescue him.”

Lynsey held her head up and gulped. How many times had she taken a sick day at university so she would miss the kind of lessons where she had to talk in front of class? This was the ultimate presentation. She scanned the seated crowd. There were so many of them. Hundreds of people were looking at her from the clearing and they went far back as the water in the oasis and into the desert to the side. These people needed someone brave enough to talk in front of them at least. She stood up and strode to stand in front of Darun.

“My name is Lynsey. I am from another world and I have met your dragon.” There was a gasp. She saw surprise on Darun’s face.

“He has been trapped in the bowels of the Temple for two centuries. He has been tortured, and treated like a simple beast.” She searched for an example that would be relevant for them.” Worse than a yelk. He is no animal. He is as clever as you or me and he deserves better. I don’t know what he did for your people beyond what has been said today but he was brought here accidentally as I was. He wasn’t meant for the life he has and he should be free. I pledge that I will do everything that I can to help you and him to make a fairer society.” The crowd stamped their feet.

Bravo, Lynsey.”

“Shut up Pico.” But she inwardly smiled.

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert
Chapter 25 - Escape

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 25 – ESCAPE (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 25 – Escape

Why did the guard never close the tent door? Sorry, flap. She breathed out in frustration. Count to three you plonker, he’s not really trying to wind you up. The idiot was insufferable. She thought her mum was pedantic. He hadn’t said much since he’d been assigned to her tent but what he had said showed he thought little of her. She wrapped her arms around herself rubbing her hands up and down over her sleeves to keep warm. One minute he was correcting her, the next, acting like she was stupid and useless. Also what was with the sharpening of the spear all the time? Did he think she was going to attack him? It was going to be the size of a pencil if he didn’t watch it. He really should make up his mind whether she was a danger or not. Huh? Oh, Pico was talking again.

“Oh, yes. Keanu was great in that.” Lynsey replied. She cocked her head to the side. “Did you just hear that?”

Pico swirled in colours in her mind, “It’s nothing, just someone walking behind the tent. So what do you want to watch?”

“Where was I? Oh yes. My favourite film is The Lakehouse. I just really love Keanu Reeves. Take a look at that one.” The great thing about chatting about home was that the guard had no idea what she was talking about and he must have thought she was going, if not already, slightly mad. Well, he was keeping more of a distance than when he was first posted to be her guard. Talking to Pico only in her thoughts all the time just felt weird.

Pico went silent and his colour went murky as she felt his attention go elsewhere. She waited for a moment and closed her eyes. The movie began to play. It was like she was there again. She could feel the softness of the sofa, the popcorn as the salty-sweetness crunched in her mouth and the full feeling from the steak dinner Peter had bought her for their second date. He would have been a keeper apart from his commitment issues. Buying a toothbrush for him did not mean she wanted to marry him. Seriously! Lynsey took a deep breath, don’t think about that. Enjoy the warmth she told herself. She could feel Pico’s amusement. Stop listening to my thoughts, she snapped back.

She relaxed into it. There were definitely advantages to Pico sometimes. This was the third movie since they had left Ghinari. If only he’d mentioned this ability at the beginning, it put a whole new angle on things. She let the heat from the open fire seep into her bones and her current troubles floated away as the credits rolled from her memory. Who needs virtual reality when you have a Pico? She could choose any film she had ever seen and he would play it for her in real time. He was careful not to look at it until it was ‘playing’. These were memories held in the band. He’d put them in there without looking. All those years bingeing on webflicks were really starting to pay off.

There it was again. Her gaze narrowed to the back of the tent. It sounded like scuffling. There had to be someone there. Actually, it was more like a scrabbling noise coming from outside the tent. Could it be? She stood up and moved to the door of the tent. The guard was still there, sharpening that damned spear. What did he think was going to happen? An army of grizzly bears was going to descend on the tent? From where exactly? She shook her head.

The film was still playing in that strange double vision way it did. It was only really fun to watch them with her eyes closed, but Lynsey was distracted as she sat back down again on the only chair in the room. The noise was still there. It had to be Illyara. An animal would have given up by now and anyone from the camp would come through the tent flap. She got up to investigate, loitering close to the noise. If it was Illyara, she didn’t want the guard to see anything and get suspicious but there was nothing to see yet. She sat down again. Her heart began to pound, it had to be her, she just had to have a little patience and play it cool. She perched on the end of the chair. The Brothers weren’t inhuman, they had provided a chair and a bed but they weren’t the most comfortable she had experienced and she would have given anything for the comfort of the nomad tent.

She leaned back and crossed her legs, waiting to see what would happen.

“Are you even watching this?”

“Sorry Pico, something is happening at the back of the tent. I don’t think it is an animal. Whatever it is.is very persistent.” She thought back.

“You are right of course.” He stopped the playback, clearing Lynsey’s vision. “Do you think it is help?”

“I don’t know, Illyara was at the temple, she could have found her people and come to find us.”

There was a momentary silence in Lynsey’s mind. “You said us.”

“I did, I think if we are going to be together for a long time then I need to accept you.”

Just then the bottom of the wall of the tent moved up slightly letting a cool breeze enter. There was more scrambling and then the flap at the front of the tent fell. Lynsey was already smiling when Illyara appeared in front of her with Mewlli.

“Hello Lynsey, would you like to leave now?” She grinned at her friend.

“Hi guys, I thought you’d never ask. I’ve been expecting you.”

They grinned back and pointed to the back of the wall. “I get it. The guard will be used to my voice talking to myself here but he’ll think it is strange to hear yours.” She followed them out of the tent and hugged the outside of the material while Mewlli scouted ahead.

They waited in the shadows. A whistled broken tune floated towards them on the slight breeze. Lynsey pulled Illyara closer to the tent wall. A man was briefly illuminated from fire-light coming from in-between the tents. The sounds of chanting and laughter drifted over as he limped slowly towards them. In his hand, he held a long black cigar, billowing black smoke around him. The stench pervaded the air hitting Lynsey’s nose as he passed. The smoke invaded her lungs before she thought to hold her breath and coughed slightly. She clasped her hand over her mouth, her eyes watered. The tickle grew and she burst into a cough. The man turned seeking the source of the sound. He did a double-take, squinting for a second then he registered who she was. He opened his mouth to yell. Lynsey froze. Her whole body was rooted to the spot. She felt Pico unfurl from the recesses in her mind, expanding his awareness until he could take over. She retreated to let him and watched as her body twisted to get a purchase in the sand. She moved forward with fluid grace, her right hand flexing out in readiness. Before she could think what Pico was planning, her hand jabbed the man in the throat. His yell came out in a strangled cry. Her foot moved of its own volition and stamped on the man’s good ankle. She could swear she heard a crunch. Her body moved backwads, taking a step behind before her knee flew up in a straight line. Lynsey took note of the tears that formed in his eyes with satisfaction. Good, that’ll teach him to smoke. Then the man wavered for a second before falling down silently in the sand. Pico rescinded control. The colour of his thoughts were tinged pink with satisfaction.

“Well done Pico.” Pink turned to purple. “Don’t get too cocky but well met.” He wisely stayed silent.

Lynsey turned back to see Illyara’s eyes shining with admiration.

Her friend darted forward to grab his hands and Lynsey took his legs. They dragged his body closer to the tent. She grunted as she pushed him into the hole that Illyara and Mewlli had dug earlier. They covered his body with quick handfuls of sand leaving his mouth and nose open to the air.

Mewlli came back as they were putting the finishing touches to the mound of sand.

“The guards around the perimeter have changed. They appear to be more alert. We are not going to be able to get out the way we came in. We need a diversion.”

“Can you do that Mewlli?”

He grinned. “Of course sister.” He disappeared while turning away.

“Be ready for something.” Illyara whispered.

“It would have been helpful if he could have given us an idea of what he was thinking of.”

“He’s young.”

Lynsey snorted.

Suddenly, they heard a whoosh and a tent was ablaze on the far side of the camp.

“That is Mewlli!”

“You have to hand it to him. He has style, your brother.” Lynsey panted as they ran.

“I probably would have done the same thing.” Illyara griped.

They moved from tent to tent, keeping to the shadows as men rushed passed them to the far side of the camp with water as the fire jumped to nearby tents.

By the time they got to the end the men guarding the perimeter had gone to help with the fire. Illyara motioned for Lynsey to stay in the shadow of a cart while she disappeared walking in the direction of the yelks. Lynsey saw the ropes holding the yelks in a small compound untie themselves from a post dug into the ground and the camel-like animals began to get restless as they smelled her friend. Illyara reappeared and motioned for Lynsey to join her. Lynsey nodded and ran forward keeping an eye out to see if anyone could spot her. Everyone had gone to fight the fire.

The herd were stomping their feet as the fumes from the fire changed to their direction. She grabbed the first hump she could get to. She hooked a leg over its back and hung off the side. From the corner of her eye she saw Illyara, slap the rump of the lead yelk and the herd stampeded off after it to get away from the fire. Lynsey held on tight to the short fur. She gritted her teeth as a yelk banged into her from her left in the panic. She let go for a second and her heart jumped. She grabbed some fur at the last second and managed to haul herself back up to sit on its back. She heard shouting in the distance from behind them and she bent her head, gripping even harder. She closed her eyes and tried not to think of her muscles screaming. Time seemed to stretch out. Twenty minutes later and it felt like they were going up a hill. She opened her eyes and she saw they were cresting a rise. In the distance she could see that the camp was still fighting the blaze. She doubted that they had even noticed her escape yet.

On the lead yelk, Illyara got off her yelk and grabbed hold of the hair that formed a beard on her yelk then Lynsey’s. It stopped abruptly, nearly sending Lynsey flying over its head. Lynsey opened her fingers one-by-one, letting circulation return to her fingers. The yelks around her were still restless but they stayed as a herd. She dropped to the cool sand with relief. Feet drummed the ground sending sand flying in all directions. She flung her arms up to protect her head as a hoof narrowly missed her. Illyara let go of the two yelks she was holding and it rushed off in a spray of sand followed by the others. They reached the top of a dune and then they were gone leaving Illyara and Lynsey alone under the stars.

“Where’s Mewlli?” Lynsey whispered. She didn’t know how far her voice would travel in the night.

“Here.” Mewlli appeared grinning in front of Illyara. “That was easier than I thought it would be.”

“Don’t get too full of yourself brother, we still need to get back to camp. It won’t take them long to realise Lynsey escaped under cover of the yelks. We have a few miles to travel and we need to do it fast and quietly.”

She pointed in the direction they needed to go to get to the camp. Illyara ran in front to take the lead. Lynsey ran in between and Mewlli took the rear moving his shirt back and forth in the sand to obscure where they had been.

When they saw the camp, Mewlli began to chuckle. Lynsey gave him a sideways look. What was there to laugh about? She grinned back at him. They could have died. Her grin slipped, but they didn’t. The corner of her lips lifted until she began to giggle as well. They must have looked a sight riding those yelks like the devil was after them. Illyara threw her hands up in exasperation but then she gave in with her familiar peals of laughter.

Breathless they staggered in to the main tent and collapsed on some cushions. All around them were curious eyes but when they saw they were unhurt, most of the tribe began to laugh and cheer with them.

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility
Chapter 24 - Desert

ACCIDENTAL IMMORTAL CHAPTER 24 – DESERT (SERIALISATION)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

#amwriting #books

Welcome to the serialisation of Accidental Immortal. Chapters will be published four times a week so the serialisation will be completed at (roughly) the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner!

If you would like to start from the beginning, please head over to chapter one. There is also a contents list at the bottom of each post.

–Ceri Clark

Chapter 24 – DESERT

The tribe dispersed from the tent, picking up their cushions as they went. They worked as a team, loading up the yelks with furnishings, cloth and supplies. Illyara was among them orchestrating the breakup of camp like a symphony. They had done this so many times, the familiarity was soothing. She directed her people almost out of habit. The cushions and furniture were removed first from the tents, then the huge domed structures were pulled down with a warning shout. Women tended to the animals in her periphery vision while others loaded the yelks.

As the tribe set off, Illyara moved to her customary place in the back. The pace was slow. There was no hurry, it would take a while for the priests to get ready judging by the state of the caravan when she last saw it.

The desert looked featureless around her. …unless you know what you were looking for, she thought. Her tribe was almost invisible to untrained eyes. The colour of the yelk fur blended with the sand and anything that had any colour was packed up and hidden by the material of the tents. Her eyes roved past their caravan to the dunes around them. Their towering presence was comforting, if deceptively calm.  She lifted her head to the side and sniffed the air. There was something in the light breeze. She took a deeper breath. It was going to rain. The corner of her mouth raised slightly, nothing to worry about though, it would be light. She settled in to her stride. The swish of long sand-coloured travelling robes was the only sounds she could hear as they trudged on.

The journey to the pyramids should take the tribe a week at the most, but then the tribe was familiar with the route, its oases and markers. She considered how many times she had taken the trip. It was at least once a year. She knew the way to the nearby water hole by heart. It was important that the location would never be lost. In fact, it had been lucky for Lynsey that they had arrived ahead of time but was there such a thing as luck? Maybe she was the one they had been waiting for? A brief flare of hope ignited in her but she squashed it down. Her people had travelled this desert for centuries. This was their life, she couldn’t imagine anything different. Yet it was already different, they should have been further west by now, selling their wares to prepare them for the dry seasons but here they were chasing after a stranger and a dream.

Illyara rubbed the small of her back. It was strange that a couple of weeks of inactivity meant that years of walking was practically lost. She shouldn’t get tired this easily. City life was not good for her people, she realised.  She couldn’t imagine living away from the desert. If the legends were right and their ancestors had farmers among them, …but that was before the Egyptians had brought them to this place.

From the back, she could see there was something different about the tribe. Illyara’s brows furrowed as she studied her family. What was it? They were wearing the same clothes, they were walking at the same pace as they normally did. What was it? They were walking different. Then she had it. Their heads were higher and their shoulders were straighter. She felt it too, she realised. The excitement among the tribe was almost palpable. A stray thought materialised and she paused for a second, there had always been a cloud hanging over their heads. That could not change. It was silly to think that one person could make such a difference. But what a person, came the unbidden thought.

That night there was no shortage of volunteers to be scouts to keep track of the temple camp but it was no surprise when Paereek was selected. His affinity with his wedas, made the decision a foregone conclusion. Anyone sitting atop a lone yelk on a sand dune would have been too obvious. They needed the wedasi. Usually used for hunting, a wedas with its snake body was perfect for moving through the desert unseen with speed. It was low to the ground, quick, quiet and with the right person, reliable. Paereek had been training wedasi for decades and they treated him as one of their own. Illyara shuddered. The way their twin heads would simultaneously rub the front and back of him in affection. It is not natural, I would rather ride a yelk any day.

Illyara wrapped her arms around herself in the night air. A soft glow emanated from an open flap of the tent behind her. Enough to see a little in front but the light was so low her night vision was not impaired. The twin moons were bright above, allowing her to watch the long low body of the wedas slide along the sand into the distance. Paereek lay along its length, arranging himself around its legs which were tucked up into its side so it could gather speed as it slithered on the sand. She wished him luck but he would not need it. He would report the other camp’s whereabouts until they had an opportunity to get Lynsey away. She turned to go back inside again.

The next evening, everyone gathered in the main tent for their meal early. The lamps were brighter than usual. Illyara sat next to her parents. She felt nervous and was picking at the stitching on her dress. The action reminded her of Lynsey and she stilled her hands. She was in two minds. Was Lynsey the one they were looking for? The question kept revolving around her mind. What should she tell them? Should she keep anything back? She looked at her father for reassurance but he had moved and was talking to her aunt against the tent doorway. Her mother caught her look and moved to sit closer to her.

“What is troubling you, my darling?”

“I do not know if I should tell everyone everything about Lynsey.”

“They deserve to know Illyara. If she is what we suspect then this affects our tribe and our world.”

“It cannot be, mother. Surely if it was then there would be more signs?”

“How many signs do you need daughter?”

Illyara looked deep into her mother’s violet eyes. She was so beautiful, so wise.  Her mother’s frank gaze made her cast her eyes down to the cushions on the floor.

“You are right. It is time. I have delayed enough.” Illyara squared her shoulders and stood. She picked up a wooden box which lay at her feet. She lifted the lid off and pulled out a small silver bell. It tinkled as she drew it out. She rang it once, then again. The chatting ceased. Her father gave her a small encouraging smile from across the room and moved closer to give support.

“I have spent the last few weeks with the stranger we found at the oasis near the pyramids.” She was surprised at how clear her voice was. She stopped to see everyone had sat down and was looking at her. They were hanging on her every word. She coughed and carried on.

“The people we met in the city were from all corners of our land. They were speaking different languages yet Lynsey did not seem to realise. They were talking to her in one speech and to themselves in another. She understood them all and replied to everyone in their own tongue. This happened in the shops with the serving girls as well as with the lords and ladies at the banquets.” She stopped for effect.

“There was a Droota delegate there and she charmed him when she spoke in his own language.” A murmur filled the tent. The Droota language was notoriously difficult comprising of clicks rather than words.

“That is not all. We tried to take a walk in the park and we were set upon by five people.” Illyara blushed deeply at the memory. “I’m ashamed to say I used the gift and disappeared but she bravely fought off four assailants before a fifth brought her down.” There was a collective gasp, then excited whispers.

“Can she heal?” Asked her aunt from the back of the tent. Everyone grew silent.

“She can. She was knocked over by a carriage and I saw broken bones heal themselves and bruises and cuts disappear before my eyes. She is like the dragon.”

Her aunt nodded at the back. She was holding a pendant with the loop and cross of the Ankh in her hands. In the silence, Illyara could hear the wind hitting the tent outside as the tribe contemplated the symbol’s significance.

“She can speak many languages, she can fight, she is beautiful, she heals impossibly quickly and she is as brave as a lion. She has to be the one we are looking for. She just has to be the Goddess Sekhmet.”

“But she has not said this?” Asked her father from behind her, playing the opposite as she had seen him do to her mother so many times before in debates. She smiled, grateful for the prompt.

“I do not think she knows.” She replied turning to face him.

“How can she not know if she is the Goddess if she is?” This was her brother, five years her junior from her left.

“I do not know, but she has miraculous abilities. How else do you explain it? She is like the dragon. She came from the pyramids and she fights, heals and is blond like a lion!” She had everyone’s attention.

“The dragon does not like to fight. I know but neither does Lynsey. Maybe when a Goddess comes from another world, they lose their memory? Sekhmet is a Goddess of war.”

“This is not for us to know. If she is indeed the Goddess then she can help us rescue the Dragon. He helped us in the past and now it is our turn to help him. Without his help we would still be slaves to our Egyptian masters. We owe him.” Her father chimed in.

“We cannot fight.“ came a new voice from the far end of the tent. This voice was from an older man whose skin was worn like leather over decades under the hot sun.

Illyara’s father answered. “We cannot fight but there are tribes in our people who can. Our brothers have been itching to revolt for hundreds of years. Maybe this time we can let them. We are the messengers, the thinkers, the head. We were spies and we can be so again. We can slip silently into any tent unseen. We can listen to whispered conversations, steal what they hide, discover secrets. We will always try to forget what we were but we were thieves in the past not because we wanted to but because we had to be. We will not be that or slaves again. If we can free the dragon, he will protect us and we can be free.”

“What about Sekhmet?” Asked another voice from the crowd.

“We cannot ask a Goddess to stay with us but if she will, she will always be welcome. She is the protector of the Pharaoh, maybe she is here to elevate one in this world to be a Pharaoh again as the prophecy foretold. The priests stopped them coming, maybe Sekhmet is here to bring them back.”

Illyara had never been so proud of her father. The eyes of her people were shining. The dream of not hiding anymore, of being able to settle down, grow their own food rather than be nomads forced to roam the land until a saviour could be found. Maybe it could happen now. They were already changing.

“Father, first we need to rescue Lynsey. We don’t need fighters for that.”

“You are right, take your brother with you. He is itching for an adventure. While you bring Lynsey to us, we will gather the tribes.” Illyara cast her eyes down. “Father, he’ll slow me down, he is just a boy.”

“He has mastered the Gift. That is all you need for this task.”

“And the ability to walk quietly without waking a Phalish.” she muttered quietly so her father couldn’t hear.

Mewlli was already waiting outside by the time she made it to the cool night air. The stars were out in force and she couldn’t help but wonder where Lynsey was from. Was it one of those stars? Was it the same one as the one the Dragon came from?

The twin moons were low in the sky but they lit up the night sky illuminating the darkness with a soft light. Illyara and Mewlli shrouded themselves in invisibility by sending thoughts out into the area. You cannot see us, we are not here. It was strange that it only worked on the eyes, thought Illyara. If it worked on ears then Mewlli’s noisy sand crunching wouldn’t get on her nerves so much. She loved him but he was still a boy and delighted in childish things. She stopped, where was he this time? His footsteps ended a few feet away. She backtracked and saw a lizard resting by the last footmark. She grabbed in the air expecting to get Mewlli’s arm but grabbed a piece of his robe instead.

“We don’t have time for this.” she hissed. “Each day they get closer to the Pyramids their maps get more accurate.” This needs to be done tonight!”

She heard him sigh in the silence and relented. ”I know this is the first time that you have been out on your own. I was excited the first time mother and father let me out but this is important. They must believe in you a lot to let you come when there are older trackers who were willing to come. Can you fulfil their trust?”

“I know,” his voice was small. She pulled him closer and gave him a hug. She forgot how much she missed him while she was away. He must have felt that way too. ”I love you brother” She felt his smile grow against her shoulder.

“I missed you too sister.”

“Come on.”

They walked on and Mewlli tried harder to be quiet. She noted with pleasure how he scattered the sand behind him with his foot to disguise their footsteps the nearer they got to the temple camp. Maybe her father was right again. She should really stop doubting him.

They entered the camp through a ring of guards surrounding the temple encampment. Their feet crunched and slid on the sand as they crept through. She cursed the light rainfall that made the thin crust on the sand but it couldn’t be helped. Look-outs sat in groups of two, quietly chatting or playing dice. The tips of tall stakes pushed in sand were alight with a bright red flame to give the guards heat as well as light to see by.

Mewlli and Illyara crept further in, hand in hand so they would not lose each other as they moved from tent to tent. She couldn’t help but think the tents were a stupid design. They had watched the guides take hours to erect them over the last few days and just as long to put them down. This should have been great. The journey which should have taken a week would have taken the brothers about five. …but they spent so long each day building the camp, that the time between waterholes was also extended. The tribe had already started to ration their water.  These people had no idea how big the desert was and with the way they travelled, it was even larger.

The first few tents were small with two or more men sleeping on bed rolls. The nearer to the centre they got, the tents were bigger. More often than not, they passed someone smoking outside the entrances and when they checked there was only one or two occupants inside. The sound of joking and laughing was interspersed with the sound of chanting from other tents occupied by the priests with their arcane ceremonies. She did not want to know what they were doing in those tents. Avoiding them they moved swiftly through the camp until they spied Lynsey through an open flap. This time there was a guard sharpening a spear at the entrance.

Illyara craned her neck to see clearer. Lynsey was sitting with her back to the door. She was wearing a bright blue robe, no doubt to make her easy to spot if she tried to get away. Illyara stealthily stepped around the guard, pulling Mewlli behind her to look inside. Lynsey was alone. The tent was bare except for a light on a small table and a small bed.  Why would they bother with fripperies like heavy tables like that? No wonder they were so slow to move camp. Loading the yelks down with non-essentials like that was silly. She looked at the small gap between the guard and tent. There was no way she could get into the tent past him. He was sitting too close to the flap. If they tried to squeeze past him they would be discovered. Illyara’s eyes scanned the contents.

Lynsey was talking to herself again. Illyara turned to look at the guard but he was ignoring her. She couldn’t make out what Lynsey was saying but she must have been doing it a lot because the guard wasn’t paying any attention to her at all.

Illyara squeezed Mewlli’s hand so he knew she was going to move backwards and they crept around the outside of the tent to the opposite side. As luck would have it no entrances were pointing towards this side of the tent so she started digging and moving the sand to one side with her hands. She could hear Mewlli’s gentle breathing beside her for a moment and then she heard him bend and copy what she was doing. They soon dug a hole under the tent wall, spreading the sand around them as they went. Unless anyone was looking, they would think the hole was a shadow of the tent.

Illyara passed under the material of the tent wall first, followed by Mewlli. Illyara strode to the front of the tent and closed the flap behind Lynsey so the guard would not see them appear.

She was still holding Mewlli’s hand so she pulled him close to stand in front of Lynsey. She let her shield drop. Mewlli did the same beside her.

“Hello Lynsey, would you like to leave now?” She grinned at her friend.

Contents

Chapter 1 - Duat
Chapter 2 - London - Present Day
Chapter 3 – Lynsey on Duat
Chapter 4 - Nomads
Chapter 5 - Scorpion
Chapter 6 - The Dragon Temple
Chapter 7 - Assassin
Chapter 8 - The Luscious Luna
Chapter 9 - Arkan Blade
Chapter 10 - Kidnapped
Chapter 11 - Rescue
Chapter 12 - Modesty
Chapter 13 - Banquet
Chapter 14 - Arkan
Chapter 15 - Dancing with the King
Chapter 16 - Dragon Brotherhood
Chapter 17 - Pico
Chapter 18 – The Dragon
Chapter 19 – Settling Down
Chapter 20 – Danger Revealed
Chapter 21 – Betrayal
Chapter 22 - A Meeting of Minds
Chapter 23 = Invisibility

Accidental Immortal Chapter 1 – Duat (Serialisation)

Accidental Immortal serialisation

There are fates worse than death…

Hello, I have decided to serialise my latest novel, Accidental Immortal, on my blog. While for the first week it will be published every day, after the first seven posts they will be published four times a week so that the serialisation will be completed at the same time as on Wattpad, if not a little sooner! I have gone with British spelling on this one…

-Ceri Clark

Chapter One

The Pharaoh was coming. Hesire pulled the first Osiris band from the deep pocket of his green neophyte robe and the rest clinked together as they jostled back into place in the confined space. He held the bracelet in his palm reverently for a second before putting it in its place on the alcove. He repeated the action one by one until all the holes were filled. The gold on each gleamed dully in the subdued light from the lamps high on the walls. When the last bracelet was placed in its allotted slot, he stood back to regard the rest of the hall with a critical eye.

Apart from new entrants to this world, only those that served Osiris could enter here. Travellers were hastily pushed through as soon as they arrived and they were never allowed to look around or touch anything. Hesire had been told that if any of the delicate equipment surrounding the centre of the room was damaged then they could receive no new supplies. No one knew how to repair them anymore. The designers were long dead in the other world. Egypt was changing on the other side as well, who knew how long they could rely on getting seeds and animals to remake the new one.

Raised above the floor by a couple of inches was a great circle of bronze, as wide as a workman’s hut, standing proudly in the enormous space. It was directly situated equidistant to the outer walls and the twin emblems of Osiris were etched in the centre. The priests wanted to leave no misapprehension of who was in charge. Large bronze boxes, the size of horses, inlaid with gold and jade surrounded the bronze circle forming a triangle. He looked up as he had done a dozen times before in awe at the scale of the building to see the great walls rise above him towering into an apex. The walls were made of brick rather than stone, the only concession to new world materials, He knew the engineers would rather have made the pyramids a better replica of the originals but this pyramid was built to receive rather than send so the measurements and materials did not need to be so exacting. Only the basic design of the inner pyramid as laid down by the mathematicians, astronomers and engineers had to be followed. There was no need to stroke the Pharaoh’s ego on this world.

Hesire stifled a yawn. He had been up since before sunrise but the intake was due to arrive in a few days and everything had to be perfect for the glory of Osiris. He couldn’t help but think it was ironic. The wealth of the Pharaohs created the pyramids, this place, so that Egyptians could travel to Duat but no Pharaoh had ever made it through. In the past they believed that you had to die inside the pyramid to be transported and no priest had ever been brave enough to suggest a Pharaoh should kill himself to get here. In fact, Hesire’s smile grew wider, as soon as the priests realised you had to be alive in the pyramids before transmission they introduced the mummification process just to make sure that the Pharaohs would be completely dead before it happened.

A low hum began to invade Hesire’s senses. It built slowly. His bones tingled first, then his whole body began to hum and then he heard it clearly. He whirled around to stare at the jewels lighting up by the battery he knew was in an ancillary room.

Someone was coming! His heart lurched, the Pharaoh’s retinue shouldn’t be arriving for another couple of days. The papyrus was very clear on the matter, Ahmose I had already died but all the preparations would not be ready for days. He hadn’t seen it but the brotherhood was abuzz with what food or tools would be sent with this one. There were rumours circulating in the order that there might not be another pyramid built and he had heard that the small pyramid replica in the High Priest’s office had been sending regular scrolls back and forth negotiating what would be included. He hoped that they would have the foresight to send seeds rather than yet more jewels but of course the High Priest would have all this in hand. A blight had killed a lot of the crops off in the spring and they needed to start again. He rubbed his hands from his temple to his chin, an affectation that had led to far too many nights alone in the Temple contemplating his shortcomings.

The room grew dark and cold as all energy was drained from the air. Hesire’s bones vibrated with the forces that surrounded him and the electric lights that had been installed two years ago by brother Akhten burst into glass shards in the corners. Sparks began to fly in the outer ring lighting up the room briefly with another taking its place in increasing frequency. Hesire dove for the bronze circle on the floor, for the protection of Osiris but more importantly away from the tremendous forces about to flood the chamber. He flung his hood over his head and cowered at the edge of the circle. His back was to the boxes and he watched the centre. He composed himself with effort. This was the first time he had greeted anyone from Earth and disrespect would not be tolerated. He hadn’t expected to be given the privilege for years. This was an opportunity to stand out, maybe rise in the ranks if he played this correctly. He placed his arms forward in the bow expected of his order. A stray bolt whizzed past his ear to hit the sleeve of his arm, the material smouldered and a flame ate eagerly at the linen. Holding back an oath he smothered the flame quickly with his other sleeve and sat back breathing deeply to calm himself.

Black smoke pervaded the air, radiating from the centre. This was different. He coughed repeatedly as his lungs stung. It was difficult to breath. The acrid smell of burning flesh assaulted his nose making him grimace and brush his nose before resuming the posture. His eyes streamed but he stayed in position. A form began to coalesce in front of him, Hesire gasped, that was no funeral procession! It began to take shape. He sat up to get a better look, forgetting propriety in his confusion. The space in the middle of the room filled with a monstrous form, so large it filled the space. There was no time to run. He had an impression of incredible speed, claws, fangs and a terrible growl that instilled a fear like nothing he’d felt before, then all thoughts ceased as terror gripped his mind.

-End of Part one

Accidental Immortal Update

Accidental Immortal Cover
Accidental Immortal Cover
Accidental Immortal Cover

Accidental Immortal was my entry for the NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) in November last year. For those unfamiliar with the event, writers have to create a first draft of a book during November of no less than 50,000 words.

It wasn’t easy but my ‘vomit’ draft was completed in time. This year has seen me trying to complete the novel (read re-write it) to make it publishable. Unfortunately for me this is a slow process because I have a few Simpler Guides on the go and a healthy, happy toddler to chase.

From the original 50,000 words, the novel has grown to 65,000 and I’ve reached chapter twelve out of 37. The finished novel could be around 90,000-100,000 words. This is the biggest project I have undertaken and one that I am most proud of.

The premise is of an ancient Earth civilization that finds a way to colonize another world. Lynsey Walker is a twenty-something from London. Still at university she has taken a break after an illness. While travelling home she finds herself transported to an alien planet. This world has changed drastically over the centuries like our own. People, fashions, religions have all developed in unexpected ways. How will she survive, will she get home and will she find love?

February Newsletter: Information and news about Ceri Clark and her books

Ceri Clark Newsletter
Ceri Clark Newsletter
Ceri Clark Newsletter

Hello and welcome to the first newsletter from CeriClark.com!
Thank you so much for signing up. As this newsletter is new, please bear with me as I find what works in this (hopefully) monthly email.

As a start, I thought I would talk about my recent and new releases, works in progress, a spotlight on one of my existing books and finally any free or bargain books from my associate publisher.

In future newsletters I might scout Amazon for some book recommendations for free books for you, depending on feedback from subscribers ([email protected] to let me know what you think), as one of my books explain how to get free ebooks (A Simpler Guide to Finding Free eBooks). Please note that you must download the free books on the day you receive the email. They are usually free for only one day so if you leave it, they may go up in price!

Contents

Recent and New Releases from Ceri Clark

News about works in progress

Spotlight on … A Simpler Guide to Calibre

Bargain and Free eBooks from Myrddin Publishing

 

Recent and New Releases from Ceri Clark

 

An easier guide to keepingin touch with friendsA Simpler Guide to Google+: An unofficial user guide to setting up and using the Google Plus social network (Simpler Guides)

Check out the paperback of A Simler Guide to Google+ at Amazon!

Do you want a better way to organize and manage your social relationship? Do you want to keep in touch from friends and family all over the world in one video call? Are you interested in meeting people across the web with similar interests? Then this guide is for you!

  • Learn why Google+ is the best social network
  • Set-up a new Google+ account
  • Learn about Hangouts, the best and easiest way to meet your friends and family face to face online with video Hangouts. Up to 10 people at a time!
  • Have better privacy than on Facebook or Twitter
  • Post, comment, ‘like’ and share
  • Discover like-minded communities, Google+ i*s the best social network for photographers!
  • Understand and use the settings
  • Easily control who can see your stuff
  • And much more…

A Simpler Guide to gmailA Simpler Guide to Gmail: An unofficial user guide to setting up and using your free Google email account (Simpler Guides)

Check out the paperback of A Simler Guide to Gmail at Amazon!

Are you looking for free e-mail but don’t know where to start? Do you use Gmail but want to use it more effectively? Do you want to organize your emails better? Spending too much time on your email? Then this guide is for you! 

  •   Learn why Gmail is the best email solution
  • Set-up a new Gmail account
  • Send and receive emails
  • Avoid and explain the best way to deal with scams, spam and phishing emails
  • Protect your email from hackers
  • Organize your email
  • Understand and use the settings
  • Discover and use Google+
  • And much more…

CALIBRE SLIDER1A Simpler Guide to Calibre: How to organize, edit and convert your eBooks using free software for readers, writers, students and researchers for any eReader (Simpler Guides)

Check out the paperback of A Simpler Guide to Calibre at Amazon!

Do you have hundreds of e-books but can never find the one you want? Would you like to convert an e-book to work on a different device? Are you itching to organize your e-books but are not quite sure how? Then this guide is for you!

  • Learn how Calibre can be useful to you
  • Set-up Calibre
  • Catalog ebooks, i.e. add books, edit book information
  • Send e-books to your Kindle or other devices
  • Find free e-books
  • Browse and search your e-book collections
  • Convert e-books
  • Edit e-books
  • Discover, download and send news sources to your devices
  • And much more…

News about works in progress

 

Accidental Immortal Cover

November saw the annual National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) appear again. This year I took part and wrote the first draft of the Accidental Immortal. This is a sci-fi/fantasy tale of Lynsey Walker who finds herself transported to a former Egyptian colony named Duat on another world. All she wants to do is go home but she may find a reason to stay… I’m in the process of rewriting the chapters but I am at the very beginning so it may take a few months to get to the quality I feel happy with. I have already created the cover and used it as inspiration for writing the novel. Before I began I decided to think of three random elements, namely the pyramids, a girl and a dragon. I then looked for those ideas on stock photography websites and purchased the images. This meant I had to finish the book or waste the money! Watch this space for news on the completed novel.

Spotlight on … A Simpler Guide to Calibre

A Simpler Guide to CalibreCalibre is free software to organize your ebooks. You can organise, search and browse by covers, titles, authors and anything else you can think of when you put the information into the program. It can convert ebooks as well as letting you read them using the software. The two amazing things it can do are converting ebooks and the ability to email ebooks direct to your Amazon Kindle. It is truly amazing software.

My guide introduces you to the concepts of how to use the software, how to catalogue effectively and how to find the book you want, when you want it. If you want to browse by the cover, this book shows you how. Do you wnat to find your paperbacks in your house? Why not catalogue their location in the software and then all you need to do is search in the software later and it will tell you where it is. Check it out at Amazon!

 

Bargain and Free eBooks from Myrddin Publishing

Unremembered Thiongs Kindle EditionBARGAIN: Unremembered Things

Check out Unremembered Things on Amazon.com/a>

 

Heart Search Book One: Lost. Kindle EditionFREE: HEART SEARCH – Book One: Lost

Check out Unremembered Things on Amazon.com

Heart Search will be free on Amazon 7th and 8th Feb only! http://smarturl.it/HeartSearch-Lost One bite starts it all . . . When Joshua Grant vanishes days before his wedding his fiancée Remy is left with only bruises, scratch marks and a hastily written note. Heartbroken, she sets off alone to find him and begins a long journey where strange things begin to happen. As Joshua descends into his new immortal life he indulges his thirst for blood and explores his superhuman strength and amazing new talents while becoming embroiled in coven politics which threaten to destroy him. But Remy discovers a strength of her own on her quest to bring Joshua home.

Hunted Heart Kindle EditionBARGAIN: Hunted Heart

Check out Hunted Heart on Amazon.com

Hunted Heart is on sale for $.99 with all proceeds going to charity. http://bit.ly/HHkinUL When Tali is hired to cut out the heart of Prince Kas, the huntress can’t refuse. Tali realizes there is no escape from the dark magic of the queen’s mirror, even though her own feelings for the prince are far too complex to understand. As they try to run from their shared destiny, Tali and Kas have to rely on their wits and each other as hunter becomes prey and hearts are won and lost. A genderbent Snow White for adults (18+ only.) All royalties go to SavetheChildren.org. 

Darkness Rising Book One is Free at SmashwordsFREE: Darkness Rising, Book One – Chained

Check out Darkness Rising for free from Smashwords

The first book in the popular epic fantasy series Darkness Rising remains free to download in a variety of formats through Smashwords. Dive into the spellbinding series today.

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/392664 Wild magic comes at a cost… that of the mind. Emelia dreams of escape from her life of servitude. She dreams of magical powers; she dreams of dark things. When tragedy awakens the sorcery within her she embarks upon an epic journey in the company of two charming thieves. In the Dead City an ancient evil awakens. The Lord of the Ghasts covets a magical Prism, the clues to which lie with Emelia. And when he begins to share her dreams, surely it is only a matter of time until she succumbs to his power?

Huw the Bard Kindle EditionBARGAIN: Huw the Bard

Check out Huw the Bard at Amazon.com

Smuggled out of the burning city in a reeking ale barrel, Huw the Bard is a wanted man. Starving, reduced to begging and worse, he must somehow make his way north to safety. It’s a 200-league walk to the one place he might have a friend, though the path Huw must take is anything but straight.

A lot can happen to a man on journey like that.

Step into the dangerous world of Waldeyn for only $ .99 through February 28, 2015
http://bit.ly/HuwTheBard_US