Here is a teaser-taste of the sequel to Legend of the Tengu Prince, my newly published fantasy, action, adventure. Volume two is entitled, Legend of the Cherry Jewel . Below find the first chapter…
He cried, it is both
a blessing and a curse to
know the awful truth…
–Tsuru no Megumi
The bird man flew low beneath stars that crackled like ice chips in the moonless sky. Expanding his wings, he glided on the jet stream, directing his flight a kilometer short of where the sandy embankment stretched on either side of the “Sea of Japan“. Dreading what he would find there, he closed his eyes and drew in a ragged breath while a single wish filled his thoughts.
Tonight, things will be different from all the nights before. Back the way they should be.
His greatest hope sprang from his greatest horror that the terrible revelations he remembered from previous journeys would turn out to be mere dreams dredged up from nightmares. Not a horrific foretelling of the future, as all of his most vivid visions always turned out to be.
Megumi Tsuru landed soft as a leaf blown by the wind. The current blew strong near the ground so it pulled his outstretched wings, snowy white with jet-black tips. The next instant, the fetid stench of dead fish, matted with decayed seaweed, assaulted his senses.
So it remains the same. He shook my head while anxiety washed over him like a dull film.
The voice of the sea thrummed in his ears. The gulls that chattered overhead seemed too loud. Still, he swallowed his sorrow, letting the crash of the waves soothe instead of annoy him while a different, yet familiar sensation burned deep inside his bones. It quickly blazed over and through him to the farthest regions beneath his feathers to the very tips of his claws and beak.
When he opened his eyes, he peered out from the smooth face–of a man. The warmth of a summer‘s night caressed his human body while an inner chill made him shiver.
He dug his toes into the sand, dry where it should be wet, next to a notched branch shoved into the sand when snow had covered the ground–over six months ago. He had put it there himself to mark the place where high tide hit the shoreline used to lie.
Now dried seaweed stuck cracked and black to the upper nodes of the branch severed from the sacred Sakai, the same tree that once hung with brightly colored cloth and a mirror to lure Sun from her cave hiding place millennia before.
From the defiled branch, Megumi his way on foot toward the edge of the sea, his gaze focused on the sand. He could have flown, but he wanted to feel the tremors when they rumbled beneath him, shooting like a spear up his spine. The terrible sensation reminded him that this was more than a dream.
Megumi shook his head. The quakes grew in intensity each time he ventured to the devastated shore. Nothing could deny that.
Copyright by Ledia Runnels 2012
Read Volume One of Legends, now in print!
During a time of civil war, Karasu Hinata is born the son of a powerful warlord. When he is still a child, his family castle is taken by a rival clan. His father and mother are murdered right before his eyes.
Barely escaping with his life, he is spirited away by the king of the tengu. The shape-shifting raven leads him to the hidden mountain retreat of a sect of mystic warriors. Mountain priests who practice the magic of Shugendo.
Ten years have passed. The time has come for Karasu to leave the mystic’s protective lair and face his demons in the world beyond. But the fiend that haunts his nightmares is also the one that shattered his life. More than a bad dream, it wants him dead.
In Legend of the Tengu Prince, nothing is as it seems. Shape-shifting creatures, both good and evil, populate the magical world of feudal Japan. And a young man will pay the ultimate price for a deadly rival spawned in the mists time. This riveting first volume of a epic fantasy adventure will leave you stunned and begging for more.