Deacon Shader is a child out of time, removed as a baby from his Ancient world parents and raised on the Isle of Maranore. On his seventh birthday, the philosopher Aristodeus arrives to commence the boy’s training with sword and mind. Nothing short of excellence will suffice, if Deacon is to fulfill his destiny and avert the Unweaving of all things.
But as Aristodeus pushes him to the limits, reavers are spotted approaching the coast, and a cloud of horror descends upon the village.
For these are no ordinary pirates. They sail under the Impaled Man, the grisly flag of Verusia, land of the undead and realm of the Lich Lord.
For centuries, no one had heard a peep out of Verusia, the dark stain at the heart of the Templum’s empire. But a messenger arrives in the Holy City of Aeterna and the Lich Lord is on the move again.
Captain Deacon Shader leads the Seventh Horse, a heavy cavalry troop now deemed obsolete. One charge, one chance is their motto. Time it right, and the tide of any battle can be turned; get it wrong, and it could all be over.
When the two forces face off outside the walls of Trajinot, it is not just the hordes of undeath the Templum must fight. Intangible terror poisons the air, driving seasoned warriors to panic.
Deacon Shader is a man of contradictions. Trained for holiness, he is also the deadliest warrior of his generation.
When plague strikes at the heart of the city of Sarum and the Abbey of Pardes is attacked by an army of undead, Shader is thrust into the forefront of an ages-old conflict.
Armies clash, dark magic is unleashed, and devastating science threatens to unmake the whole of creation.
These are the times of the Unweaving that Shader has been prepared for since a child; and these are the days that will test his faith to the limits.
With Shader dead and his piece of the Statue of Eingana in the hands of Shadrak the Unseen, the threat of the Unweaving of all Creation is one step nearer.
As Sektis Gandaw closes in and a clash of cultures threatens the land of Sahul, the philosopher Aristodeus still has ideas of his own that could decide the fate of all existence.
But with the passage to the heavenly realm of Araboth covered by the Abyss, nothing is as it should be. Aristodeus knows that even Shader’s death can be turned to his advantage; after all, it’s a long game, and he holds all the cards.
But even the best laid plans …
Shader has failed and Sektis Gandaw now holds all the pieces of the Statue of Eingana. It’s now just a matter of time …
A sliver of hope comes in the form of Shadrak the Unseen, who has the means to travel to the source of the coming cataclysm, but Shader, Shadrak, and Rhiannon discover that Aethir brings a new set of challenges: the Sour Marsh; an arrogant senate that seeks to appease rather than fight; and a volatile secret at the heart of the ravine city of Arx Gravis.
Old love has turned sour and regrets run deep. Shader is sick of killing; Rhiannon’s last defense is a self-destructive rage; and Shadrak’s niggling conscience is causing him more trouble than he needs. Loyalties are called into question, yet all three must bury their differences if they are to prevent the Unweaving of all things.
One by one, the guilds of New Jerusalem fall to Shadrak the Unseen and his accomplice, the poisoner Albert. But as the battle for supremacy comes to a head, Shadrak is given a new order by the mysterious Archon: kill his closest living friend, the Nameless Dwarf.
The philosopher Aristodeus persuades the Archon to stay his hand, proposing instead three quests that will free Nameless from the curse of the black axe that led him to slaughter his own people.
But the plan has perils of its own: a visit to the fire giant’s lair at the heart of a volcano; a daring raid on the Liche Lord’s castle in darkest Verusia; and a confrontation with the son of the Demiurgos in the depths of the Abyss.
Even with the incomparable partnership of Shadrak and Nameless, the quests seem doomed to failure, and so Aristodeus tries once more to entice Deacon Shader back to the fight.
But Shader is a changed man, more given to drink than the sword, and if he should discover the secret Rhiannon and Aristodeus have kept from him these past four years, the quests are sure to come to a crashing halt before they even get off the ground.
Friendship, scheming, and the worst horrors imaginable combine to test the companions to the limits, and despair dark enough to corrode even the most unwavering faith awaits those not destined to return.
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“Love and bloodlust are impossible bedfellows; one only can reign, else all the worlds will end.”
The entire epic fantasy trilogy in one volume, and now including the totally restructured and revised book 1, Sword of the Archon.
Book 1: Sword of the Archon
Book 2: Best Laid Plans
Book 3: The Unweaving