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Authors: Mary Kirchoff

Night of the Eye

BOOK: Night of the Eye
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More than three centuries after the Cataclysm, Krynn still bears scars from the wrath of angry gods. In this land where fear prevails, magic is as mysterious and mighty as the legendary dragons. The Defenders of Magic trilogy is the story of the powerful mages who daily defend their beloved Art against those who would corrupt it or see it abolished.

Guerrand
—second son of a noble family in decline, he is torn between obligations and his ambition to become a mage, an occupation his brother abhors.

Justarius
—enigmatic archmage of the Red Robes, he offers to his apprentices ultimate mastery of magic, in exchange for absolute loyalty.

Belize
—Master of the Order of Red Robes, he has searched the ruins of deadly Itzan Klertal for the secret that will grant him passage to the forbidden Lost Citadel, where the gods have stored the knowledge of all magic. And he has found it.…

DEFENDERS
OF MAGIC

Night of the Eye
Volume One

The Medusa Plague
Volume Two

The Seventh Sentinel
Volume Three

DRAGONLANCE
®
books by Mary Kirchoff

Kendermore

Flint, the King

(with Douglas Niles)

Wanderlust

(with Steve Winter)

The Black Wing

NIGHT OF THE EYE
Defenders of Magic • Volume One
©1994 TSR, Inc.

All characters in this book are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

This book is protected under the copyright laws of the United States of America. Any reproduction or unauthorized use of the material or artwork contained herein is prohibited without the express written permission of Wizards of the Coast LLC.

Published by Wizards of the Coast LLC. Hasbro SA,
represented by Hasbro Europe, Stockley Park, UB11 1AZ. UK
.

D
RAGONLANCE
, Wizards of the Coast, D&D, their respective logos, and TSR, Inc. are trademarks of Wizards of the Coast LLC in the U.S.A. and other countries.

All Wizards of the Coast characters and their distinctive likenesses are property of Wizards of the Coast LLC.

Cover art by: Larry Elmore

eISBN: 978-0-7869-6350-8
640-A1853000-001-EN

For customer service, contact:

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Visit our websites at
www.wizards.com
www.DungeonsandDragons.com

v3.1

To Barnie Haen

For all the memories

Contents

Two men were stoning a witch in the village square of
Thonvil. The first rocks dropped the beggar woman to her knees. Her bony hands waved wildly in a pathetic attempt to fend off the missiles. Another rock hit the ground in front of her, splashing mud and dirty water into her face.

Guerrand DiThon, brother of the local lord, watched in horror. The woman was no witch. An eyesore in the village, perhaps. Demented, certainly, even possessed, but Guerrand thought her condition more likely the result of harsh street life, or even a diet of tainted flour or fermented grain mash, too common on the bleak, unyielding southern coast of Northern Ergoth. But a witch she was not. No one knew better the signs of a mage than one who secretly wielded magic himself.

A crowd had gathered. Guerrand knew nearly all of
those present since the village was small and family lines stretched back to well before the Cataclysm. The nobleman felt he had to do something to stop the shameful persecution.

“Evard, Wint, drop those stones.” He put a knobby hand to the thick shoulder of the bully nearest him. “Malvia has done no wrong, certainly nothing to warrant this treatment.”

Evard started at the touch. Scowling, the paunchy, red-faced man craned his thick neck around to examine the interloper. Seeing the tall, lanky younger brother of Lord DiThon, Evard’s eyebrows raised, and he turned around to face Guerrand. The man’s fingers relaxed around the rock in his hand, but he didn’t let it drop. Instead, he juggled it lightly in his rough palm. A surly smile raised his fleshy cheeks. “Would your brother approve of you releasing a witch?”

Guerrand sighed inwardly. He, above all, knew Cormac’s obsessive hatred for magic. “I’m sure he wouldn’t, but I’m also sure he wouldn’t let one of his subjects be tormented for no good reason. Even Lord DiThon could see this woman is no witch.” He jerked his head toward the cow-eyed, ragged woman. “Would
you
live as a beggar if you could grant yourself wealth?”

The rock fell still in Evard’s hands. Wint dropped his own rocks and tugged on the other man’s sleeve. “Let ’er be, Ev,” he muttered, stepping away, his face averted. Evard cast one last glance between the beggar woman and Guerrand, almost in puzzlement that the young noble should stop their sport. With a slight shrug, the middle-aged rummy, who looked twice his actual age, let the rock tumble from his coarse fingers to the dust. Evard and Wint drifted down the narrow, winding road to the pale, cobblestone structure that served as Thonvil’s inn. With the excitement gone, the rest of the crowd began to disperse.

Guerrand’s thoughts were not on any of them as he
stepped forward to help the woman to her feet. Her wounds were not severe, mostly bruises to her arms, though her left cheek bore a nasty gash that Guerrand knew would mark her for the rest of her days.

Malvia’s gnarled old hands clutched the ones that helped her to her feet. Her dull eyes regarded the young noble with reverence that made him uneasy. “You saved me,” she breathed through rotted teeth.

Turning his dark head from the smell, Guerrand brushed her hands away gently. “I think not, Malvia. Those two had simply drunk too much and were looking for some cruel sport. They wouldn’t have seriously harmed you.” Secretly, Guerrand doubted his own words.

The woman tugged out the pockets of her tattered skirt. “Would that I had anything to give you in exchange for my life,” she said, as if he hadn’t spoken.

At that Guerrand reached into his own fine silk pouch, which hung at his waist, and withdrew two steel pieces. He pressed them into her dirty palm and folded her thin fingers back over the cool metal. “This should help you to live more comfortably, so that no one will have cause to call you a witch again.”

Guerrand passed his hand across her face as he mumbled a soft incantation beneath his breath. The mud and caked dirt there fell away. The woman’s cheeks and forehead were brown and weathered, but clean.

BOOK: Night of the Eye
11.12Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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