Read The Chalice and the Blade (The Chalice Trilogy) Online

Authors: Tara Janzen

Tags: #Historical Fantasy, #Wales, #12th Century

The Chalice and the Blade (The Chalice Trilogy)

BOOK: The Chalice and the Blade (The Chalice Trilogy)
3.81Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

The Chalice and the Blade

The Chalice Trilogy – Book One

Tara Janzen




First published by Bantam Dell, 1997

Copyright Glenna McReynolds, 1997

EBook Copyright Tara Janzen, 2012

EBook Published by Tara Janzen, 2012

Cover Design by
Hot Damn Designs
, 2012

EBook Design by
A Thirsty Mind
, 2012

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without permission in writing from the author.

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either products of the author’s imagination or used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.


The Chalice Trilogy

The Chalice and the Blade
– Book One

Dream Stone
– Book Two

Prince of Time
– Book Three

River of Eden
— “One of THE most breathtaking and phenomenal adventure tales to come along in years! [Tara Janzen] has created an instant adventure classic.” ~ RT Book Reviews

Steele Street Series
— “Hang on to your seat for the ride of your life... thrilling... sexy. Tara Janzen has outdone herself.” ~ Fresh Fiction

For more information about Tara Janzen, her writing and her books please visit her on her website
; on Facebook
; and Twitter @TaraJanzen

To my parents

Richard and Lois Gillis—

always in my dreams,

never far from my heart.


For the generous gifts and loans of historical, astronomical, and ofttimes magical tomes, and for other various bits of whimsy, inspiration, support, and knowledge, the author would like to thank: Margaret Aunon, Sandra Betker, Debra and Tom Catlow, Victoria Erbschloe, Margaret Frohberg, Joy Hopely, Jane Ronald-Houck, Mary McReynolds, Jean Muirhead, Susan Parker, Olivia Rupprecht, Debra and Tom Throgmorton; Dean and Kerrie, for making some magic; also, Rebecca Kubler and Lance Gills, for their enthusiastic reading of the manuscript; Cindy Gerard, lovely muse, for not only reading the manuscript with enthusiasm (over and over again), but for doing so with a pencil in her hand, which she used; and Stan, Kathleen, and Chase McReynolds, for contributions too numerous to list—all of them from the heart.

My special thanks and appreciation go to Elizabeth Barrett, for her empathy, her insights, her patience, and for taking what was and making it better. ’Twas ever thus—

Author’s Note

Writers doing research are a sojourning breed. We spend our days wandering through other people’s work, diligently searching when we know what we want, exploring for epiphany when we don’t; dallying for a short time between one set of bound pages, practically setting up house in the next.

In the writing of this novel, I incurred some rent, most notably to Giraldus Cambrensis and his
Journey Through Wales 1188
. It was also with great pleasure that I discovered the work of Mircea Eliade; in particular, his book
The Forge and the Crucible: the Origins and Structures of Alchemy
, and an article he wrote for
, “The Myth of Alchemy.”

On a historical note, during the Middle Ages the frontier between England and Wales was known as the March. The March lords, originally followers of William the Conqueror, were barons whose holdings comprised the borderlands. They were laws unto themselves, subject to the king of England, but not to English Common Law. What they had, they kept by the power of their swords, building castles and warring on their neighbors—the Welsh—and ofttimes on each other. On the other side of the border, the Welsh did the same, their disunity being their greatest flaw, with the Welsh princes as inclined to war on each other as on the land-hungry barons. The March was an integral part of the history of Wales for over four hundred years, reaching its demise under the reign of Henry VIII with the act of February 1536, statute 27 Henry VIII clause 26 (in this century referred to as the Act of Union), whose purpose was to incorporate Wales into England.

One historical fact that I turned to fancy concerns the Thief of Cardiff. The story is true, though the
nom de plume
is not. A Welshman, Ifor Bach of Senghennydd, did steal a Norman earl from his bed one night in retaliation for the confiscation of some land. Over a hundred men-at-arms and an even greater number of archers guarded the castle keep at Cardiff while the “immensely bold” Ifor scaled the walls and made off with William of Gloucester. Ifor did not release the earl until the stolen estates were returned.

A number of Welsh names and words appear in the book, and I would offer two notes on pronunciation: c always has the “k” sound, as in candle; dd is pronounced like the English “th,” as in those.

On the map of Wales, Merioneth has been resurrected to an autonomous principality from an earlier time. The River Bredd, along with Carn Merioneth/Balor Keep, and Wydehaw Castle, have been conjured from imagination, the caverns beneath Carn Merioneth even more so. As for the
tylwyth teg
I cannot help but believe, so sure am I that I’ve met a few.
Amor... lux... veritas

Glenna McReynolds/Tara Janzen

October 1996


Cast of Characters

Carn Merioneth

—Lady of Carn Merioneth from the matriarchal lineage of a Magus Druid Priestess from Anglesey

Ceridwen ab Arawn
—daughter of Rhiannon

Mychael ab Arawn
—son of Rhiannon, twin brother to Ceridwen

—Lord of Carn Merioneth

—famed bard of Brittany, Beirdd Braint of the Quicken-tree, builder of the Hart Tower

—daughter of Nemeton

Wydehaw Castle

Dain Lavrans
—the mage of Wydehaw

Lord Soren D’Arbois
—a March lord, Baron of Wydehaw

Lady Vivienne D’Arbois
—wife of the baron

—Dain’s hounds

Ragnor the Red
—captain of Wydehaw’s guard

—witch who lives in Wroneu Wood

—daughter of Madron

Morgan ab Kynan
—Thief of Cardiff; a Welsh Prince

Morgan’s Band of Men:

—the captain





Balor Keep

—the Boar of Balor, ruler of the keep

—excommunicated priest, Balor’s leech

—minion of Helebore

—destroyer of Carn Merioneth, father of Caradoc

—a guardsman at Balor

The Quicken-tree:

—leader of the Quicken-tree

The Quicken-tree:








—captain of the Liosalfar

The Liosalfar:





—ruling Prince of Gwynedd from 1194 to 1240

Jalal al-Kamam
—Saracen trader, slaver

Kalut ad-Din
—Saracen trader, slaver

The Chalice and the Blade

BOOK: The Chalice and the Blade (The Chalice Trilogy)
3.81Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

Other books

Trapped by Melody Carlson
The Blue Guide by Carrie Williams
Do Not Go Gentle by James W. Jorgensen
Unexpected by Marie Tuhart
Hell's Bay by James W. Hall
Ten Inches by AJ Hardcourt
Johnny Halloween by Partridge, Norman