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The Guild’s Design: Sister Seekers 7

A Polyamorous Dark Epic Fantasy

by A.S. Etaski

I’ve confronted the half-blood mercenary who has what I need to find Jael, wherever she may be. Neither of us will leave until we reach a bargain which yields what we most desire.

The Dragonchild has brought me into a city he knows to its foundations, where I am at a disadvantage. My devout Deathwalker may be content to wait for the coming war between Manalar and the Ma’ab, secure in his value to a newly revealed influence in the conflict, but my position seems neither secure nor desirable to anyone but me.

I must dig deeper into the motives of all involved, including my own, to convince the Guild's leaders to lend me their vast knowledge and far reach within strangely familiar plots. I have to succeed for Jael’s sake, for she is my only sister left.

In The Guild’s Design, outcasts from the Deepearth dare to reveal resolute hopes waiting within quiet hearts. This time and opportunity must not pass them by, lest the promise of war rend their chances for a future beyond the next conflict.

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Tropes: Astral Projection, Band of Misfits, Beyond the Grave Communication, Big Sword, Cross-Species Friendships, Enemy to Ally, Evolving Powers, Fish Out of Water, Found Family, Here Comes the Cavalry, Humanity is Dangerous, Humanity is Good, Interspecies Romance, Lucky Novice, Magic Talisman, Mirror Shows True Self, Powerful Artifact, Pseudo European Society, Psionic Powers, Quest, Redemption Arc, Secret Society, Sex Magic, Training, Wise Mentor


Setting: large medieval city

Languages Available: English

Series Type: Continuous / Same Characters

Excerpt:

I sat as well, having to work to settle into a place where there wasn’t a hard knob of wood prodding my bones or backside too much. I waited expectantly as Mourn peeled back the cloth on the basket to show me six pale steamed pies like the one I’d been given on the street last night.

“Three each?” I asked.

“Anyone looking at us would suggest one for you and five for me,” he said, amused too easily by this.

“Well, that’s not balanced, is it?”

“It’s not. Choose and enjoy.”

“Are they all the same?”

“No. Be surprised.”

Very little thus far suggested I would regret that, so I dug into the basket for one at random and took a large bite. My stomach awoke, encouraging this course of action. The pie was sweeter than the one last night, but retained a well-cooked mixture of vegetables, sauce, and a little meat within its stretchy wrapping.

It’s also…

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“What’s that?” I asked, licking my lips after clearing my mouth in a swallow.

“What’s what?”

“I feel…” I stammered as the sensation became a real, living thing inside my mouth. “It’s hot!”

“Ah. You can detect the spice,” he said, having eaten half his pie in one bite.

“You knew?” I snarled. “A trick to further amuse yourself?”

“Apologies, no,” he said with a grimace. “I cannot detect certain fruits the Yungians use which have this ‘heat.’ Some spices, I can taste. The rest, others must tell me, and I can only believe them.”

“But you didn’t warn me, either.”

“I forgot to ask the merchant,” he said seriously. “I haven’t shared these with another in a long time, but I will not forget again. I promise.”

The grumbling continued in my head while I blew out then in, trying to cool my tongue, but it didn’t last. The strange heat soon seemed to peak but sat like a coal in my mouth. I knew better than to take another bite.

I handed him the pie. “You eat this one, then. Are they all like this?”

He took and bit into it, confirmed to be unaffected as he chewed and swallowed. “I do not believe so, but you will have to try them. I can’t taste this for you.”

This was not the type of excitement I’d been thinking about, but despite the heat I was still hungry. I grabbed another pie, sampling it with more wariness. This one, thank Goddess, was like the savory one from last night. I worked on it diligently and Mourn seemed to relax as if he was forgiven.

Be surprised. Pfeh. Good way to make myself sick in the wilderness, trying random pickings from someone else’s basket.

COLLAPSE
Reviews:Dark Pulse on Amazon wrote:

One city, yet a world of difference…

From the depths of her home city of Sivarus, Sirana is used to seeing struggle, disparity, and fighting over basic goods. Yet upon the surface, in a more exotic section of Augran, the differences between where she came from and where she is could not be even more clear. A city of trade and wonder allows the dark elf a chance to experience delicacy and luxuries many below could never dream of. All while continuing her work in preparing the next stages of her journey.

Establishing alliances and forging deals to help her see that both she and her child make it back home alive, while meeting the conditions set out by both her Queen, and herself. Tensions continue to mount, pieces shift into place, and the long shadows of war begin to darken the horizon. As we see the light begin to fade, so do we see the dark warrior come into her element.


About the Author

Etaski writes adult epic fantasy with an ever-expanding scope. She enjoys Dark Elves, Dragons & Necromancers, and has been writing for mature lovers of Sci-Fi/Fantasy for fifteen years. She has scores of books waiting to get out.

She began Sister Seekers nine years ago on Literotica, not knowing how far it would go. She is now improving and publishing the entire epic with the support of her long-time fans, plus writing the next one, The God Wars, for patrons of Patreon.

Her most inspiring epic stories are Neil Gaiman's Sandman, Wendy Pini's ElfQuest, Melanie Rawn's Dragon Prince, and J. Michael Straczynski's Babylon 5.