Alira spent most of her young life in hiding. She was born in the city of Robinta on Delfinnia’s northern shore at a time when witch hunters scoured the land for illegal magic users. Her father was such a person.
He was a mage who had left the mage realm of Caldaria to be with the woman he loved. For years they had lived in peace as he hid his powers from the world, unfortunately when Alira’s mother fell pregnant the magic was impossible to hide.
On the day of Alira’s eleventh birthday the Knights of Niveren swept into Robinta. The knights had been tasked with rooting out illegal mages and turned the city over in their search. In a desperate attempt to protect his daughter, Alira’s father used his magic. He struck down one of the hunters with a spell. Upon seeing his actions other illegal spell casters joined him. A vicious battle erupted resulting in the city being set ablaze.
In the confusion Alira’s mother managed to flee with her daughter. In the fighting Alira’s father perished. Since that day the city of Robinta has held a memorial service every year to remember those who died. Noticeably the magic users are branded the villains and no words of sorrow are spoken for them.
Alira’s mother fled east to find help. Her own mother lived in the Great Forest. After a week on the road the weary travellers arrived at the edge of forest and there found shelter with Alira’s grandmother.
For a while the three lived in peace in the forest, Alira enjoyed the sounds and smells of nature. One day however that all changed when a scream pierced the air. Alira and her grandmother ran outside of their house to see Alira’s mother being attacked by a Fell beast of the Void. Helpless to save her mother they could only watch in horror as the banshee drained the woman’s blood.
Once it had finished with her it turned its attention to the two other women. With its unearthly screech it attacked. Just as it was about to strike them down Alira’s grandmother pulled a pendant from her blouse. The silver object was in the shape of the seven pointed star of Niveren, it unleashed a blinding light which sent the banshee fleeing back into the trees.
The pendant was magical in nature Alira’s grandmother explained, given to her by another old woman that lived deeper in the woods. Alira was surprised that her grandmother possessed such an object for she had always scorned and belittled any mention of magic in the past.
Over the next few days Alira buried her mother but her grandmother began to act strangely. Alira would catch the old woman muttering to herself. She grew hateful, constantly sniping and yelling at Alira.
One day her grandmother told Alira to go deeper into the forest and to take the pendant with her for protection.
She wanted her granddaughter to find the old woman in the forest and thank her for the amulet. Alira did as she was told curious as to the identity of this strange other old woman, a woman who knew magic. She ventured into the forest and sure enough deeper into the woods she encountered the woman.
What happens next is revealed in Heir to the Sundered Crown. (Released July 1st on Kindle)