“It’s worth more than half a kingdom! And that’s not even touching the sort of power you can gain from it.” The old man was rambling, shouting over the noise of the tavern. Most ignored him as they went about their night, but one young man edged closer. He liked a good story, after all, and the man seemed very inclined to tell his.
“Go on, then.” The younger man urged as he took a seat at the small round table and set his cup down. “What’s this fantastic treasure called?”
“They called it the luck diamond.” The old man was eager to have an audience. “I only saw it once, but oh… That was enough to know I had to see it again. She’s a beautiful gem, enough to make a man rich for ten lifetimes.”
“And the stone’s power?”
“The magic of luck is fickle, but for the brave, you can choose to tap it and hope for the best. The stone will cast a spell for you, yes, but the wielder has no control over what happens. The magic is tuned to the luck of the user. Last man I saw with it had very bad luck, it seems.”
“What happened to him?”
The old man squinted, suddenly a bit suspicious. “You’ve got a lot of questions, boy. What’s your name?”
ABOUT THE WORLD
Storm Song takes place in the country of Elysia, which is divided into six regions that surround the central capital of Silverwood. The book opens in Merrowport which is a city in the southernmost region, Rinall. Rinall is largely a trade region, relying heavily on its many ports around the southern border of Elysia. The other regions of Elysia include Carran to the immediate northwest, which is the only region to remain largely undeveloped since the ending of the Great War. Carran’s forests are dense and overgrown, full of dangerous beasts and territorial tribes. There’s also Fraysal to east of Silverwood, just north of Carran, Esmos to the west of Silverwood, bordering the northern parts of Rinall, and the northern lands of Luthar and Luplain. Each region was named for the original tribe that controlled it during the Great War. Certain regions like Luthar and Luplain remain tense, even 600 years after peace was found.
Across the Otros Sea, the land of Jannth sprawls nearly four times the size of Elysia. Largely unpopulated due to the extreme weather conditions, Jannth is something of a mystery to many citizens of Elysia. The majority of Jannth is a harsh desert, occupied by nomadic tribes that roam the dunes. The top quarter of the country, however, is a wasteland of a tundra. The divide between these two climates is one of the greatest mysteries of this world. A magical barrier splits the two portions of land, creating a clear line between desert and tundra. You can have one foot in each, though it isn’t recommended at all. There are whispers of how this came to be, but no one seems to know for certain.
ABOUT THE MAGIC
There are a few types of magic discussed in Storm Song. The most common magic is that of the sorcerers. Those born with the gift for the magic can be taught to cast various spells to bend the world around them to their whim. Most sorcerers specialize in a particular element, but others might prefer a “jack of all trades, master of none” approach. A person does not need a mentor in order to develop a magical ability, but working without any assistance certainly makes it more difficult.
Silvertongue magic is considered a myth by most. Stories say that one in every generation of a Silvertongue family is born with the gift. From birth, any word they say can be charged with their inherit magic of compulsion. The listener finds themselves drawn to do whatever is that the Silvertongue has said. Direct requests are harder to resist while a more round-about suggestion may be something that the listener can shake off. Also, the wording of a Silvertongue’s speech must be carefully formed, else they risk someone taking their meaning completely wrong and acting accordingly. During the Great War, Silvertongues were used to end the fighting amongst the warring tribes. Unfortunately, the power they held was seen as too great to allow to exist within the new Elysian peace. It wasn’t enough to cut out their tongues, as the royal family knew that the next generation would bring a new Silvertongue into the world. So they were sought out and killed. A few families managed to escape, and kept their gifts secret for generations. Now, most people question whether they ever existed at all. And that’s just how they like it.
Bardic magic. The magic of a song. That’s the sort of magic that our main character Thoster will discover as Storm Song unfolds. It’s an extremely rare gift, passed down through a magical bloodline that goes back as far as time itself. It’s said that the bards were the first to truly learn how to control their magic- that they taught the sorcerers and the Silvertongues just what it was inside of them. Some even say that they coaxed the magic out of their arcane brethren with the very magic of their music. This gift is difficult to control, usually needing a focus like an amulet or some instrument held in the bard’s hands. But once mastered, bardic magic is rumored to be some of the most powerful ever seen in all of Elysia.
ABOUT THE MAN
Thoster Chatwyn never really knew what he was going to do with his life. Where other men entered into apprenticeships, learned trades to earn their coin, Thoster found he had no particular skill that made him valuable enough to keep on staff. He floated from shop to shop for a time before finding that he could earn a bit here and there by singing and telling stories at local taverns. It wouldn’t make him much, but it was more than he had and it was all that he could hope to provide at the time. Second oldest in a line of four children, Thoster grew up feeling responsible for his younger siblings, but knew that his elder sister Shaylee would always come through for him if needed. Thoster never knew his father, but he’s going to learn a great deal about the man as this story unfolds. There are secrets in Thoster’s past and great choices awaiting him in his future. Loyal to those he loves, friendly to anyone he meets, Thoster has always been able to mold himself to meet the needs of whatever crowd he’s in. Still, his identity is shifting and evolving as each day passes. When he joins the crew of Captain Calvin Roff, his journey truly begins. Each day is a test, each task holds a lesson. And Thoster will quickly learn that not everything and everyone is what they seem.
-cover art credit: Kaytalin Platt