The Letter

Sometimes a letter can change everything...

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Author Feature: ‘Soul Forge’ by Richard H Stephens

Soul Forge by Richard H Stephens is an epic story of a forgotten hero. Scorned by an ungrateful kingdom, unfairly blamed, for the demise of their beloved Queen, Silurian Mintaka decides he can't fight for his land anymore. To re-enter the hostile fray of his peers would probably end up with him killing them all.

A thunderous detonation rocked the land. The pile of debris they stood amongst lurched and collapsed upon itself, taking everyone down with it. To Jarr-nash’s relief they had tumbled into the relative calm of the shrine’s interior—the spot from which they had fallen, engulfed in fire.
They lay in disarray within a small chapel. The flames crackling from above cast an ethereal light upon a larger than life statue matching the one that had stood guard over the entrance. Jarr-nash’s eyes focused on the empty scabbard hanging from the statue’s waist.
He pushed aside the debris that had fallen on him and went to his queen. She lay half buried in crumbled rock but her even chest falls reassured him she was alive. 
He freed her from the rubble and with Alhena’s help, stood up with Quarrnaine clutched in his arms—silt and small debris sifted from her limp body to the floor.
He traversed the nave and mounted the altar steps. Kneeling before the sacred presence, he gently laid Quarrnaine upon the dusty marble, altar.
Behind him, the bishop prostrated upon the top step, mumbling incoherently to the altar piece. The warlord remained amongst the dusty pews halfway between the cleric and the two knights who had remained at the entrance.
Alhena stood at the base of the chancel steps, glancing anxiously from warlord, to bishop, to the statue.
Jarr-nash shook the queen’s shoulders. “We are here, my lady. We found the shrine. We need you to wake.” 
She didn’t stir.
A crimson flash illuminated the shrine, causing all but the queen to turn and gasp. One of the knights, framed by the flaming doorway, shouted, “It’s coming right at us!”
Jarr-nash’s eyes grew wide, his attempts to awaken the queen more animated.
The knights shrunk away from the doorway, yelling for him to hurry.
Jarr-nash reached over his shoulder. With a euphoric ‘swish’ the blade slid from its sheath. He jumped to his feet, facing the serene altarpiece staring back at him. 
The light in the chapel increased, a harbinger of the fireball’s approach. 
Jarr-nash raised the Sacred Sword Voil, positioning its gleaming tip at the small slit atop the marble scabbard.
Bishop Uzziah’s cry diverted his attention. “No, you fool! You’ll destroy the blade!” He appeared to be having an apoplectic fit.
Jarr-nash stared dumbly at the bishop, unsure what to do. 
A frantic movement near the chapel’s entrance caught his eye. The knights were bent over, covering their heads with their arms. The unnerving whine of their approaching doom rose to a deafening roar.
Jarr-nash hesitated for only a moment longer before doing the only thing he knew to save his queen. With a loud clang, he drove the blade home. The sword’s hilt shuddered to a halt atop the dusty scabbard at the same moment the fiery globe impacted the shrine’s entrance.
Jarr-nash’s last images were of the knights disappearing in a wave of flame as it swept through the chamber on the heels of a powerful concussion. 
The sound of grating rock sounded above the din as the granite roof collapsed into the bowels of the blasted shrine.

Soul Forge will be released tomorrow, August 21. Don’t miss it…

A Bite Of... Richard H Stephens
Q1: Would you rather be a hero or a villain?

I have always had a soft spot for people who get picked on or treated unfairly, so I would definitely rather be a hero. Nothing would satisfy me more than to intervene on an unfair situation and make it right, knowing that as the hero, no one would be able to gainsay my decision…at least without ramifications of course. 😉 

Q2: Would you rather live in this world or the one you create in your books?

If it weren’t for the present situation in Soul Forge, I would much rather live in Zephyr with my characters and enjoy a much simpler, wholesome life, than having to deal with the fast paced, high-tech, ‘my cell phone is more important than you,’ society we live in today. Then again, now that I think on it, I would choose to live in Zephyr anyway, despite the…whoops, almost crossed into spoiler alert territory. 😊

Q3: Chocolate cake or coffee cake?

Chocolate cake, hands down. Give me a great big, honking piece of chocolate cake, preferably a corner so there is icing on three sides, throw in a tall glass of cold milk, and I will be your friend for life. The only thing that should be associated with the flavour of coffee, is coffee. 

Richard H Stephens in his own words

Born in Simcoe, Ontario, in 1965, I began writing circa 1974, a bored child looking for something to while away the long, summertime days.  My penchant for reading ‘The Hardy Boys’ led to an inspiration one sweltering summer afternoon when my best friend and I thought, “Hey, we could write one of those.” And so, I did.
​As my reading horizons broadened, so did my writing. Star Wars inspired me to write a 600-page novel about outer space that caught the attention of a special teacher, Mr. Woodley, who encouraged me to keep writing.
A trip to a local bookstore saw the proprietor introduce me to Stephen R. Donaldson and Terry Brooks. My writing life was forever changed.
At 17, I left high school to join the working world to support my first son. For the next twenty-two years I worked as a shipper at a local bakery. At the age of 36, I went back to high school to complete my education. After graduating with honours at the age of thirty-nine, I became a member of our local Police Service, and worked for 12 years in the provincial court system.
In early 2017, I resigned from the Police Service to pursue my love of writing full-time. With the help and support of my lovely wife Caroline and our 5 children, I have now realized my boyhood dream.

You can find Richard H Stephens on Twitter and his website.

Sunday Serial XLV

As soon as the new beds were delivered, Anna and Carrie embarked on a grand clean-up and furniture rearrangement. Sam left them to it as much as possible; when he was not a work, he tended to retreat to his workshop at the bottom of the garden unless required for furniture humping duties.

He was there late one Friday afternoon lovingly oiling the wood of Anna’s surprise wedding present, when she called from the back door.
“Sam. Can you come in a minute?”
“On my way lovey.”
He washed his hands at the tiny sink and brushed the sawdust off his trousers before cantering up the path with Bonnie at his heels. When he got into the kitchen, he found Sandra Wang sitting at the table with a bone-white face. She was clutching a large glass of wine and her teeth chattered on the rim as she took a drink. Anna sat opposite her, looking concerned. Sam sat down beside Sandra and possessed himself of the hand not holding a glass.
“What’s the matter, love? What’s got you so upset and shaky?”
She tried a smile.
“Oh Sam,” she said in a very small voice “I’ve been working in the private wing at Cheltenham for the past couple of weeks, but there’s something very wrong there. First we had a computer virus, and some men from a specialist company had to be called out to fix it. They finished this morning. Then some policemen arrived. They shut down the wing until further notice, confiscated a lot of computer equipment, and arrested half a dozen people. They questioned the rest of us and let us go. One of the policemen told me not to worry, as I hadn’t been in the job long enough to be under suspicion. He also advised me not to go back there and not to be in contact with any of the staff in the NHS bit of the hospital, which I told him would be a bit difficult. When I explained why, he said Ez was in the clear, but there might be some senior doctors in it up to their eyebrows. I dunno if he meant you, but I had to come and see you. I’m sure you had nothing to do with whatever is wrong, so I had to come and warn you.”
“It’s OK. There’s no trouble for me.”
“Thank goodness for that. I didn’t want to think you could be rotten. You’ve been kind and friendly to us.”
“It’s OK, Sandra. I knew there was trouble in the air, but I never dreamed you would be working in the private wing. I thought you were a GP.”
“I am, but between practices at the moment. So I signed on with an agency and they put me in the private wing doing ward rounds.”
“Oh. Right. Well. I’m sorry I didn’t warn you.”
“Don’t be. I’d have given the game away very quickly. Can you tell me what was going on?”
“You don’t want to know.”
“That bad?”
“Worse.”
“Then it’s not just a case of financial irregularity?”
“No.”
“The police seemed quite cross that the consortium rep wasn’t around. I’m guessing she was up to her neck in whatever was going on.”
“I imagine so, but don’t worry about it.”
“If you say not,” Sandra sounded a bit happier.
Anna smiled at her.
“You look better. More colour in your cheeks.”
“I feel better, but would you mind if I stay here till Ez gets home? Mama and Poh are away for a few days and I don’t quite feel up to being on my own.”
Sam and Anna shared a look.
“Course you can stay, silly,” Anna said bracingly. “What time is Esmond due home?”
Sandra looked at her watch.
“In about an hour if he’s on time, which he probably won’t be.”
“Can you call him?”
“I can leave a message at least.”
“Well, give him a bell and invite him here for some supper.”
“Oh that’s kind, but isn’t it an imposition?”
“No. I wouldn’t have offered if it was.”
Sandra picked up a handbag the size of a compact car and rooted busily in its entrails, finally emerging with her phone. She managed a wobbly smile.
“Yeah. I know it’s huge, but I always think I’m going to need many things at all times.” She keyed in a number and listened. “Ez. I’m at Sam and Anna’s place. We’re invited to supper. Call me and let me know if you are running late.” She ended the call. “Voicemail. But he’s very good at checking it between patients.”
As she finished speaking her phone rang.
“Ah. Here he is.”
She answered.
“Hi love. No. I’m okay now.”
“Yeah. It was scary but Sam and Anna are being kind.”
“You want a word with Sam?”
She passed the phone over.
“Yes. That’s about the size of it. No. I’m not worried now. No problem. See you.”
He handed the phone back to Sandra, who listened for a minute before hanging up.
“He’s on his way. He has heard about what went on today. He worried for me. What’d he say to you, Sam?”
“Just that he knew I wasn’t involved. And he wanted to thank us for taking care of you.”
“That wasn’t a problem was it love?” Anna smiled. “Do you two eat curry?”
“Do we ever.”
“Well then, you sit and chat to Sam while I see what I can rustle up.”
“Can’t I help?”
“No. Sit. Talk to Sam and drink your wine.”

Anna chopped and prepared while Sandra and Sam chatted lightly. She noticed the strain slowly draining out of Sandra’s voice, and smiled inwardly. Keeping an ear cocked, she heard a car draw to a halt outside. Sam obviously heard it too because he got up quickly.
“I’ll go open the gate.”
He slipped out.

By the time Sam got outside Esmond was just about to get out of his car. Sam motioned him to stay in his seat, and  opened the gate. Once the Jaguar slid in he closed the gate behind it. Esmond jumped out and grasped Sam’s shoulders.
“Is it true?”
“Is what true?”
“I’ve got a friend who works at the GMC. He called me this afternoon. Said that the police had notified them that the private wing was closed as of right then. He even hinted at what has been going on. Said three senior doctors had already been charged. Apparently you and me are in the clear, but a lot of the other senior men are under suspicion. Some have even been suspended from the register.”
“Well I’m glad you know I’m straight. But. Your friend shouldn’t be telling people stuff.”
“He knows that: normally wild horses. It’s only because of Sandie.”
“I guess I can understand that. But I’m also guessing that whatever exactly is going on it involves some very nasty people. So I’m keeping my head down. I have Anna to think about. And someone who talked to me said that this makes Harold Shipman look like a fucking philanthropist.”
“Yeah. I got that.  Does Sandie know what was going on?”
“No. And if I was you I wouldn’t tell her. At least not yet. She was badly frightened by what happened this morning. Just come and have some supper and a glass of wine. You can always leave the car here and walk home.”
“Thanks Sam. I might just do that.”
And that, Sam thought, was all he would hear about the rotten goings-on in the private health care sector. Which proves how wrong a human being can be.

Jane Jago

Principled Writing

Just take a step over here, please,
and sign on the dotted line.
Your conscience is perfectly clear now
And it’s all going to be just fine.
It isn’t a question of principle,
when wrapped in a fictional skin
A story is simply, exactly that
It can glorify any old sin.
The reader will know it’s only a tale,
And never it serious take
They are fully aware, the words that you writ
Are totally, utterly fake.
So keep your eye on that pay cheque
It’s all going to be just fine
And you really won’t even notice that
You’ve crossed a horrendous red line…

E.M. Swift-Hook

Weekend Wind Down – The Unborn

The unborn exist in the place between reality and dreams. They wink into being at their appointed time and dance excitedly around the firmament awaiting their chance at life. Each shines like a small star as it anticipates that moment when a fertile womb opens to receive the gift of being. 

In the beginning, The Creator set Their thumbprint on a ball of mud before breathing fire into a cloud of gases to warm Their newest toy.  As life took its tentative first steps, the unborn came swarming from the place beyond – avid to share the youngness of this place – and the creatures that walked on the ball of mud loved them. There was competition for each birth, and the unborn blazed with life and vitality as the excitement of the future animated their flight. As century rolled into century there always seemed to be a mother awaiting the blessing of a child, and each spark of newness found a place in which to grow.

Satisfied that all was good The Creator turned Their eyes away from this thing They had made and sought Their entertainment elsewhere. 

For many times many turns of the wheel the creatures on the ball of mud lives simple blameless lives, looking only to have enough to eat and occasionally bash their enemies on the head with wooden clubs. They were uninteresting, and The Creator’s influence bypassed that little corner of infinity, eventually waning to such an extent that The Opposite was able to stand on His own scaly feet on that insignificant ball of mud spreading knowledge and malice, and laughing as the creatures around Him lost their innocence.

Even then, The Creator were so wrapped up in more interesting species that They failed to notice how the creatures that walked on the ball of mud turned their eyes away from the skies. 

Instead, they scuttled around in the dirt, digging and scrabbling and fighting among themselves. They forgot their covenant with The Creator. They forgot their responsibilities towards the planet on which they walked. And they even forgot the need to continue their own species in the selfish drive to grasp as much as possible and hold it.  

For the first time since the Creator set this being into motion the unborn were unwanted. They grew pale and sickly, and in the end they began to will themselves out of existence, going from glorious and golden, to green and feeble, and eventually ceasing to be.

Called away from greater pleasures by the gnawing pain of the unborn, The Creator turned Their eyes on that which They had made and found it no longer good. They wrung Their hands in agonised indecision torn between what was right and Their avowed intent never to interfere with a created species. 

In the end, the pain of the unborn persuaded The Creator that steps must be taken and they sent their own unborn as Mashiach. He put his white feet on the spinning rock and spoke of love and salvation, but the creatures listened not. He stood on the mountain they called Zahyeet and spoke of the joy of family and the care of children. But the creatures turned their faces from him, indeed some among their number threw stones at him and called him ignorant, immigrant, impious. Then they turned their backs on his fair visage and went on with their games and power plays. They stopped their ears with the wax of money and power. And they lost even further the memory of what they were intended to be. Mashiach felt such sorrow that he took himself into the desert – and where his tears fell there bloomed an oasis of such beauty that the creatures made war on each other for the ownership of that tiny strip of green. And if, somehow in their vicious struggles, the pale Mashiach died, who was to care. 

The Creator watched. Their horror and revulsion was such that Their cries could be heard as thunder all about Their creation, and the one great tear that ran down Their face created a tsunami on the spinning rock that drowned countries and cities with indiscriminate malice. But even events of such magnitude could not call the creatures away from the abyss of self-seeking and loveless interaction. 

The unborn wailed in their despair and, even as another group winked out of being, The Creator lifted Their head. 

It came to Them, on a wave of sorrowful realisation, that this creation was beyond Their help and they turned Their face from it knowing in Their heart what They must do.

The last of the unborn willed themselves out of existence as The Creator reached one hand across the firmament and plucked the ball of burning gas from the sky. They crushed it in Their hand and the ball of mud went dark..

©️ Jane Jago 2018

The Collected Poems of Moonbeam Farquhar Metheringham IV – Two

It is August and I am in Athens, walking upon the very stones the Ancients walked. Thus my thoughts are turned to the fair Muses themselves. Instead of lessons to learn, I offer here some bouquets plucked from my own garden of verse. Enjoy!

Biker Biker

Biker, biker roaring past
In the street, night before last
What the hell possess-ed thee
To wake me up at half-past three?

On what distant motorway
Did you begin your ride that day?
On what tarmac didst you roll
From whence came you my sleep to troll?

And what hard shoulder fast depart
Could twist your manifold apart?
So that the popping of the sound
Could so reverberate around?

What did hammer your bike chain
To make it thunder in the rain?
What did make you choose my road
To burden with your heavy load?

When the stars – or sparks more like,
Flew from the tailpipe of your bike,
Did you wonder what fell fate
Left you back-firing by my gate?

Biker, biker roaring past
In the street, night before last
What the hell possess-ed thee
To blast me up at half-past three?

 

Rubaiyat Sonnet

Alas the Muse must vanish with the light
And close the manuscript of youthful fire
Why must I have so many thoughts in flight?
Why will not my Muse simply me inspire?
For every night a glass I have turned down
On this inverted bowl I call my desk
And bent my head for the laureates crown
To birth another written arabesque
But whence the bird forth from the branch hath flown?
How is’t Her brightness hence from me doth go?
Now here, abandoned, weeping, I do groan,
To ask why my Muse doth despise me so?

 

O Muse!

Oh Muse
How thou despitest me
With thine honeyed tongue in another’s ear
Oh Muse
How thou despiseth me
Wandering fingertips drawing another near
Oh Muse
What has thy servant done
That thou takes flight into the setting sun
Oh Muse
Oh harlot dancing veiled alone
If I thee beg on bended knee wilt come home
Oh Muse
How thou mistreateth me
Who but thy every torment loves
Oh Muse
How thou defeatest me
Thy servant and the tenderest of doves
Oh Muse
Oh fickle Muse!

 

Moonbeam Farquhar Metheringham IV

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Coffee Break Read – A Taste of Dragonheart

An extract from The Dragonheart Stories: Fairytales for Grownups by Jane Jago

The dragon spiralled down out of the sunset, with the orange light setting his skin aflame so that he looked as if he was made of oil and steel. Tia stood and watched, wryly noting the Diamond Throne banner, whilst being careful not to move or speak until the shining one’s feet touched the ground and he furled his wings.  
She bowed her head in a formal gesture of welcome.
“Greetings lady,” the voice inside her head was deeper than she expected. This must be a full male, which meant he would be a shifter as well. He would bear watching. Carefully.
“Greetings, bright one.”
The dragon regarded her out of whirling multi-faceted eyes before bowing his head. The silence lengthened, and seemed to Tia that her uninvited guest was trying to make her nervous with his lack of comment. She broke the silence in a deliberately small voice.
“What does my lady mother want of me?”
“Naught. She would merely ascertain that you are well.”
Tia cast down her eyes so he could not see her contempt.
“Perhaps my lord dragon would care to assume his human form and venture inside, to where we can speak in more comfort.”
If it was possible for a dragon to look puzzled, he did so.
“May one ask what makes you think this dragon has a human form?”
For a moment Tia dropped her shield of humility.
“Who am I?” she raised a narrow dark eyebrow.
He thought about that one for a moment before dipping his head.
“One is ashamed.”
Tia was at great pains not to show her contempt for that remark. 
“I apologise. It was not my intention to cause you disquiet.”
She felt the dragonish laughter as a vibration that ran right through her skeleton.
“My name is M’a’tsu, and I would be honoured to visit with you.”
Tia curtseyed.
“I will leave you to make the change in privacy.”
She turned and made her way across the flower strewn meadow to the grey stone buildings that clustered at the base of the cliffs and the stone stairway to the temple.
M’a’tsu watched her go, enjoying her long-legged stride and the way her body moved under the simple linen robe she wore. He found himself fantasising about tying her up with the rope of her own black hair, which hung in a braid almost to her knees. Giving himself a sharp inward reminder that he wasn’t there for pleasure, he took the necessary time to compose his mind before making the change. 
Once he was in his human form, he stretched for a moment enjoying the different sensations afforded by thinner skin. He looked down at his muscular perfection and briefly considered remaining unclothed but the pleasure of the rapidly cooling air against his human flesh had to be balanced against the possibility of giving offence. Accordingly he shifted himself leather trews and a waistcoat, electing to remain barefoot for the sheer delight of the feel of grass beneath him.
The temple on the clifftop seemed bigger now and much further away. He rather wished for his dragon form and the possibility of flying instead of climbing the steep stairs. However, that was forbidden and he had no wish to incur the displeasure of the goddess. Dragons before him had crashed to their deaths against the jagged rocks of that cliff face. He had no mind to join them. He squared his shoulders and began to walk.

Want to read more? 

 

Booksquirrel’s review of ‘The Dragonheart Stories: Fairy Tales for Grownups’ by Jane Jago

Dragonheart Stories: Fairy Tales for Grownups by Jane Jago

A magnificent adults-only collection of dragon stories!

One of my favourite things to discover is a book that gives the reader a sense of the author’s own personality. The incidental humour and quirky characters in these stories are evidence of a creative mind brimming with ideas and unafraid to follow them wherever they lead.

The Dragonheart Stories Is a brilliant collection of short stories that are imaginative, sensual and highly original — and definitely not for children! Very conservative readers would probably not appreciate them either, although this reader considers that to be very much to their own loss. The stories are much like the nature of their dragon characters: magnificent, beautiful, rowdy, complex, and at times aggressive, but at the same time filled with insight. Each story is both entertaining and thought-provoking. The narration instils in the reader a sense of reverence for the dragons, but also considerable affection for the central characters.

I really hope there are more of these stories to come. It is only fitting that this humble squirrel should pay these wonderful dragons tribute with a Golden Acorn.

This review was originally published at bookssquirrel.wordpress.com home of the talented Joanne Van Leerdam.
Look out for tomorrow’s extract here on the Working Title Blog...

Coffee Break Read – A New Job

An extract from 'When Dai met Bryn' one of the two stories in Dying to be Friends by E.M. Swift-Hook and Jane Jago

The Prefect had an office at the top of the Vigiles building with a panoramic view over Londinium. The Augusta Arena, Constantius Column, the Temple of the Divine Diocletian set in beautiful parkland running down to the river, the sub aquila housing, the Forum and the new baths. Dai presumed the Prefect’s view would be even better than the one he had from the small waiting area outside the office. He was on his fourth cup of water from the cooler and wondering if he should risk a quick trip to the snack dispenser he had seen by the lifts to curtail his stomach’s noisy ambition to digest itself, when the door opened and he was shown in to the Prefect’s sanctum.

The Prefect was a stiff-backed old-school Vigiles, clearly not too many years from his – presumably – well-earned retirement back to the warmth and civilisation of Rome. He was standing, not sitting when Dai walked in and responded to his salute with little more than an upwards nod of his head. Dai, standing in his best parade-ground stance, said nothing.

“Llewellyn,” the Prefect was behind his desk and reached down to tap a folder on it – old-school – with the photo of Dai pinned to the front they had taken when he signed up for the course. “Good things. It says very good things.”

There was a pause and the Prefect stared at him as if expecting some response.

“Thank you, dominus, I am glad I have been meeting expectations.”

“Meeting. Exceeding. Top of the class, Llewellyn. Highest score we’ve had in years.”

This time Dai said nothing in the silence. They were not told their mark on the Investigator’s exam, only that they had passed it.

“Yes,” the Prefect went on as if answering a question, “Impressive for a Briton. Direct graduate too. Master’s degree. What was that in again?”

“British History,” Dai provided, painfully aware how that sounded every time he said it. “I did do sub-units on the Early Empire and the reign of the Divine Diocletian as well,” he added hurriedly. But for all the reaction he got, he could have said it was Celebrity Studies or Creative Cartwheeling. Dai felt the usual sensation of being invisible, even though on this occasion at least, he was the supposed focus of a Roman’s attention.

“Vacancy here,” the Prefect was saying. “Lost the last man. Tragedy. He was promising too. Very bright. Shame. But have to have someone and you’ll do. Be wasted in the sticks anyway.”

Dai blinked and tried to make sense of what he was hearing. He opened his mouth to ask if he could ask something, but the prefect was speaking again.

“Accommodation provided for the first month, after that on your own – but you’ll be paid by then and can find something in one of the estates.” Then the Prefect stepped away from the desk and glowered at Dai. “I don’t like appointing one of you people, but this role needs it. You will be dealing more with your sort than with Citizens.”

Your sort. The sting of made Dai’s guts tighten.

“I’m not sure I understand, dominus. I am going home tom-”

The Prefect made that odd upward nod, like a wild animal scenting blood.

“No. Not happening. We need you here. Starting now.”

There was no room to argue. He had signed up for twenty years minimum service. But it was going to be a very awkward call to his brother telling him he needed to find another groomsman at short notice. That would do little to help with their already strained relationship – strained through disagreement over Dai’s career choice.

“Of course, dominus,” he said, working hard to keep the tight resentment from leaking into his voice.

“Great privilege. Working in Londinium. Do well here, could get transferred to Trev.” It was odd to hear the contraction of the regional capital in the mouth of a Roman, for some reason Dai had always assumed it was a British thing.

“Yes, dominus.” He noticed there was no mention of possible promotion. But then there could not be. The best he could ever hope for was a lateral transfer. No non-citizen ranked higher in the Vigiles. The Inquisitors and up were all Roman.

“Good. Sorted. Team Room XIII. Downstairs. They are expecting you. Dismissed.”

His life casually rewritten for him in less time than it took to boil a kettle, Dai found himself walking from the office wishing he’d not bothered putting in those extra revision sessions for his last exams.

Keep up-to-date with the latest information on the Dai and Julia Mysteries.

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