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Authors: John Gwynne

Valour

BOOK: Valour
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Very best wishes,

The Tor UK team & our authors

For Harriett, the bravest soul I know.

For mum and dad. I wish you could have seen this. Miss you both.

And for Caroline, of course, just for being you.

Cast of Characters

A
RDAN

Anwarth – warrior of Dun Carreg, father of Farrell. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg.

Brenin – murdered King of Ardan.

Brina – healer of Dun Carreg, owner of a cantankerous crow, Craf. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg.

Corban – warrior of Dun Carreg, son of Thannon and Gwenith, brother of Cywen. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg.

Cywen – from Dun Carreg, daughter of Thannon and Gwenith, sister of Corban. Presumed dead in the sack of Dun Carreg.

Dath – fisherman of Dun Carreg, son of Mordwyr and friend of Corban. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg.

Edana – Princess of Ardan, daughter of Brenin. Presumably Queen of Ardan since the death of Brenin, but now a fugitive.

Evnis – counsellor and murderer of King Brenin and father of Vonn. In league with Queen Rhin of Cambren.

Farrell – warrior, son of Anwarth and friend of Corban. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg

Gar – stablemaster. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg

Gwenith – wife of Thannon, mother of Corban and Cywen. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg.

Heb – loremaster of Dun Carreg. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg

Marrock – warrior and huntsman, cousin of Edana. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg.

Mordwyr – fisherman of Dun Carreg, father of Dath and Bethan. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg.

Pendathran – battlechief of King Brenin. Held prisoner by Evnis in Dun Carreg.

Rafe – young warrior belonging to Evnis’ hold. Childhood rival of Corban.

Thannon – husband of Gwenith, father of Corban and Cywen. Slain by King Nathair of Tenebral in the sack of Dun Carreg.

Vonn – warrior, son of Evnis. Escaped with Edana from the sack of Dun Carreg.

B
ENOTH

Aric –Benothi giant, companion of Uthas.

Balur One-Eye – Benothi giant.

Eisa – Benothi giantess, companion of Uthas.

Ethlinn – Benothi giantess, daughter of Balur One-Eye, also called the Dreamer.

Fray – Benothi giant, companion of Uthas.

Kai – Benothi giant, companion of Uthas.

Morc – Benothi giant, keeper of the wyrms.

Nemain – Queen of the Benothi giants.

Salach – Benothi giant, shieldman of Uthas.

Sreng – Benothi giantess, shield-maiden of Nemain.

Struan – Benothi giant, companion of Uthas.

Uthas – giant of the Benothi clan, secret ally and conspirator with Queen Rhin of Cambren.

C
AMBREN

Braith – warrior. One-time leader of the Darkwood outlaws, now huntsman of Queen Rhin.

Geraint – warrior, battlechief of Queen Rhin.

Morcant – warrior, first-sword of Queen Rhin.

Rhin – Queen of Cambren.

C
ARNUTAN

Mandros – King of Carnutan, slain by Veradis in the belief that Mandros murdered King Aquilus of Tenebral.

D
OMHAIN

Baird – warrior, one of the Degad, Rath’s giant-killers.

Conall – warrior, bastard son of King Eremon. Brother of Halion and half-brother of Coralen. Sided with Evnis in the sack of Dun Carreg.

Coralen – warrior, companion of Rath. Bastard daughter of King Eremon, half-sister of Halion and Conall.

Eremon – King of Domhain.

Halion – warrior, first-sword of Edana of Ardan. Bastard son of King Eremon, brother of Conall and half-brother of Coralen.

Lorcan – young Prince of Domhain, son of Eremon and Roisin.

Maeve – bastard daughter of King Eremon, half-sister to Coralen, Halion and Conall.

Nara – mother of Coralen.

Quinn – First-sword of King Eremon.

Rath – Battlechief of Domhain, giant-hunter.

Roisin – Queen of Domhain, wife of Eremon, mother of Lorcan.

H
ELVETH

Braster – King of Helveth, wounded in the battle against the Hunen at Haldis.

Lothar – battlechief of Helveth.

Ventos – a travelling merchant-trader.

I
SILTIR

Eboric – warrior, Gerda’s huntsman.

Gerda – estranged wife of King Romar, lady of Dun Kellen, mother of Haelan.

Gramm – horse-trader and timber merchant, lord of a hold in the north of Isiltir. Father of Orgull and Wulf.

Jael – warrior of Isiltir, nephew of King Romar and cousin of Kastell. Allied to Nathair of Tenebral.

Kastell – warrior of Isiltir and the elite Gadrai. Nephew of King Romar and cousin of Jael.

Maquin – warrior of Isiltir and the elite Gadrai, shieldman of Kastell.

Orgull – warrior of Isiltir, captain of the elite Gadrai. Son of Gramm.

Romar – King of Isiltir, slain in the battle against the Hunen at Haldis.

Tahir – warrior of Isiltir and the elite Gadrai.

Thoris – warrior, battlechief of Gerda at Dun Kellen.

Ulfilas – warrior, shieldman of Jael.

Varick – Lord of Dun Kellen, brother of Gerda and uncle of Haelan.

Wulf – warrior, son of Gramm and brother of Orgull.

N
ARVON

Camlin – outlaw of the Darkwood. Recently allied to King Brenin and Edana of Ardan.

Drust – warrior, shieldman of Owain.

Owain – King of Narvon. Conqueror of Ardan with the aid of Nathair, King of Tenebral.

Uthan – Prince of Narvon, Owain’s son. Murdered by Evnis on Rhin’s orders.

T
ARBESH

Akar – captain of the Jehar holy warrior order travelling with Veradis.

Enkara – warrior of the Jehar holy order. One of the Hundred travelling with Tukul.

Javed – slave and pit-fighter of the Vin Thalun.

Sumur – lord of the Jehar holy warrior order.

Tukul – warrior of the Jehar holy order, leader of the Hundred.

T
ENEBRAL

Aquilus – murdered King of Tenebral.

Armatus – warrior, former first-sword of King Aquilus.

Bos – warrior of the eagle-guard and expert in the shield wall, friend of Veradis.

Ektor – son of Lamar of Ripa and brother of Krelis and Veradis.

Fidele – widow of Aquilus, now Queen Regent of Tenebral, mother of Nathair.

Krelis – warrior, son of Lamar of Ripa and brother of Ektor and Veradis.

Lamar – Baron of Ripa, father of Krelis, Ektor and Veradis.

Marcellin – Baron of Ultas.

Meical – counsellor to Aquilus, King of Tenebral.

Nathair – King of Tenebral, son of Aquilus and Fidele. In league with Queen Rhin of Cambren.

Orcus – warrior of the eagle-guard, shieldman of Fidele.

Peritus – battlechief of Tenebral.

Rauca – warrior, a captain of the eagle-guard and friend of Veradis. Slain by Gar in the sack of Dun Carreg.

Veradis – first-sword and friend to King Nathair. Son of Lamar of Ripa and brother of Ektor and Krelis.

T
HE
T
HREE
I
SLANDS

Alazon – shipwright.

Calidus – spymaster of Lykos, Lord of the Vin Thalun, and later counsellor to Nathair, King of Tenebral.

Deinon – warrior, shieldman of Lykos and brother of Thaan.

Emad – shieldman of Herak. Guard and trainer of pit-fighters.

Herak – pit-trainer.

Jace – member of Lykos’ ship’s crew.

Lykos – Lord of the Vin Thalun, the pirate nation that inhabits the Three Islands of Panos, Pelset and Nerin.

Thaan – warrior, shieldman of Lykos and brother of Deinon.

War eternal between the Faithful and the Fallen,

infinite wrath come to the world of men.

Lightbearer seeking flesh from the cauldron,

to break his chains and wage the war again.

Two born of blood, dust and ashes shall champion the Choices,

the Darkness and Light.

 

Black Sun will drown the earth in bloodshed,

Bright Star with the Treasures must unite.

By their names you shall know them –

Kin-Slayer, Kin-Avenger, Giant-Friend, Draig-Rider,

Dark Power ’gainst Lightbringer.

One shall be the Tide, one the Rock in the swirling sea.

 

Before one, storm and shield shall stand,

before the other, True-Heart and Black-Heart.

Beside one rides the Beloved, beside the other, the Avenging Hand.

Behind one, the Sons of the Mighty, the fair Ben-Elim, gathered ’neath the Great Tree.

Behind the other, the Unholy, dread Kadoshim who seek to cross the bridge,

force the world to bended knee.

 

Look for them when the high king calls, when the shadow warriors ride forth,

when white-walled Telassar is emptied, when the book is found in the north.

When the white wyrms spread from their nest,

when the Firstborn take back what was lost, and the Treasures stir from their rest.

Both earth and sky shall cry warning, shall herald this War of Sorrows.

Tears of blood spilt from the earth’s bones, and at Midwinter’s height,

bright day shall become full night.

Contents

CHAPTER ONE: UTHAS

CHAPTER TWO: CYWEN

CHAPTER THREE: VERADIS

CHAPTER FOUR: MAQUIN

CHAPTER FIVE: CORBAN

CHAPTER SIX: MAQUIN

CHAPTER SEVEN: LYKOS

CHAPTER EIGHT: EVNIS

CHAPTER NINE: CORBAN

CHAPTER TEN: TUKUL

CHAPTER ELEVEN: CYWEN

CHAPTER TWELVE: EVNIS

CHAPTER THIRTEEN: CAMLIN

CHAPTER FOURTEEN: FIDELE

CHAPTER FIFTEEN: VERADIS

CHAPTER SIXTEEN: EVNIS

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN: CORBAN

CHAPTER EIGHTEEN: CYWEN

CHAPTER NINETEEN: MAQUIN

CHAPTER TWENTY: CYWEN

CHAPTER TWENTY-ONE: CAMLIN

CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO: VERADIS

BOOK: Valour
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