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When Dragons Rage Michael A. Stackpole

When Dragons Rage

Michael A. Stackpole

Published
ISBN :
ebook
Enter the sum

 About the Book 

Chapter 1A misty blue curtain descended over Princess Alexia of Okrannel, obscuring her surroundings. Save that something felt solid beneath her feet, she would have had no way of discerning up from down. Not that there really is any ground here--orMoreChapter 1A misty blue curtain descended over Princess Alexia of Okrannel, obscuring her surroundings. Save that something felt solid beneath her feet, she would have had no way of discerning up from down. Not that there really is any ground here--or up or down.She lifted her head and gazed forward, trying to see the mountain she knew loomed afar. In accord with her thought, the cerulean mist swirled and parted, bleeding down and away into low fog that tugged at the hem of her gown. In the distance she did see the sharp-peaked mountain blotting out a wedge of starry night sky.Though the mountaintop lay miles away, she reached it in three long-legged strides. She smiled, for melting of both the mist and the miles were not the only changes wrought as she moved forward. She had arrived in the mist in a simple white gown with a short cape, but by the time she reached the mountain and the arched mouth of the cavern near its top, her clothing had shifted to a warriors tunic, simple trousers, and a good pair of boots.She recognized her clothes as those she had last seen Crow wearing. This surprised her because though she was operating in a magickal realm where her whim could shape reality, she had not consciously chosen Crows raiment. Either her mind was betraying her, or other forces held a certain sway in the Communions domain.Alyx glanced up at the stone arch defining the caves mouth, and gathered her long, white-blonde hair over her shoulder. Unconsciously plaiting it, she read, The secrets within are secret without, for the good of all the world. While hardly lyrical or powerful, the words described what would happen to discussions held beyond the arch. Nothing she said or heard could be shared in the waking world.She shivered and set her shoulders. In Yslin--mere months previous, though it seemed like years--she had been invited to join the worlds eldest and most elite secret society: the Great Communion of Dragons. Any Communicant could access their enchanted meeting place in a trance that would appear to be simple sleep to observers. Alexia had tucked herself into bed at the Scarlet Mask Inn before she traveled here. This was her first conscious journey to the Communion, so a touch of fear fluttered in her belly.Still braiding her hair, she entered the cavern, occasionally ducking her head around low-hanging stalactites. She threaded her way along a dimly glowing curved path that led down to a vast arch that bridged a crevasse. She could not see the bottom of it and suspected it had none. The span linking one side to the other was narrow, and try as she might she could not make it appear any broader. On the other side, the cavern closed into a twisting, serpentine tunnel that worked its way down, and finally opened into a vast chamber filled with moist air and the gentle ripple of water washing up on a shore.A boat waited at the end of a pier that jutted into the dark underground lake. The boat had no masts and had been styled after a dragon, with a fearsome head curving up from the bow. Back on the wheeldeck stood a steel construct, animated by magick, that appeared to be the marriage of human and dragon forms. Its massive, clawed hands rested on the wheel. Its dark eyes did not show any light, nor did it acknowledge her as she boarded amidships.She glanced at it. Maroth, take me forth.The ship lurched sl