THORNKEEP


Chris Turner


Copyright 2012 Chris Turner

Cover Design: Chris Turner

Published by Innersky Books on Smashwords


Discover other titles by Chris Turner at Smashwords.com


This is a work of fiction. All the characters and events portrayed in these stories are either fictitious or are used fictitiously.


Risgan the Relic-Retriever flees north after unwittingly getting caught by the Lord Pontific in an uncompromising situation with his consort and trophy queen, Farella. Risgan is a treasure-hunter by nature, a well-known gambler, and an enterprising rogue. He wears leather breeches, jerkin and high black boots. He carries with him a curious gibbeth club-femur and two magic items—a dazzling gem blessed with granting of powers of youth or aging—also, a wish bone, traded for an ancient ring at the Zanzuria market, purported to confer boons by wish alone . . .


As Risgan poled himself downriver, he kept far from the shore. He was surprised by the water sloshing in his boots. He hopped sidewise to discover a leak in his craft—Replex had been remiss in maintaining its underbelly. He pulled at the oars, struggling to guide the sinking gondola shoreward. It was fast wallowing in the dark and Risgan bared his teeth with frustration. Silver ripples shimmered on the moonlit water; the Badan was well known for the thrukules which inhabited it, ruthless parasites in their infiltration of men’s guts. He vowed not to suffer such a fate. He poled with a madness. Yet the more desperate his efforts became, the slower his craft seemed to crawl, and in the end, he was forced to abandon it and dogpaddle fiercely for shore.

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