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Medieval Musings: August  31, 2019

"Loving this series. Urge any fantasy reading fan to read these books."-Michael D

In this week's Medieval Musings:
  • Introduction to the Saints
  • Pre-Order Ashes
  • History of Meceria - Part VI
  • Orc's of the Continent
  • Work in Progress Update
  • Author Spotlight & Book Giveaways

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Introduction to the Church of the Saints

The city of Herani is said to be the birthplace of the Human race. Whether this is true or not is debatable, but it is certainly one of the oldest Human cities on the continent. In the early days of Humanity, they adopted the gods of the other races; thus Saxnor, Hraka, Malin and the others all became ‘Humanized’. These, eventually, became known as the ‘old gods’, simply because they existed before the coming of man.

Herani, in ancient times, was a favoured destination for pilgrims seeking spiritual enlightenment. These travellers often came under attack from bandits, Orcs and other nefarious creatures, intent on robbing or killing them. Some Humans started providing guards to keep these travellers safe, for a fee, of course, and the concept of hiring guardians became a mainstay of such travel. Eventually, a group of guardians decided to pool their resources, the better to ensure success. After a few years of such cooperation, they elected to send a delegation to the Orcs of the region, in an attempt to negotiate a peace.

This diplomatic mission proved to be a success, and the names of these six individuals became revered for showing the way forward to a peaceful coexistence with the other races. With protection no longer the driving force behind the guardians, they each took it upon themselves to find a purpose. Years later these purposes became the defining factors behind the Holy Orders of the Saints, or, as it’s better known, the Church of the Saints.

Only this many sleeps until you can read Ashes!

An arrow sailed through the air, digging into a tree near a deer. Alarmed by the sound, the creature bolted, disappearing deeper into the woods.

A bellow of rage exploded from a nearby bush. Its occupant stood up, his green Orc skin blending in well with the surrounding forest. "I should have had him," he growled.

"There will be more," called out his Orc companion. "To be honest, Laruhk, I am surprised you got so close. I would have heard you at twice the distance."

"You mock me, Kargen," he replied. "My skills are just as good as yours."

"And yet the deer escaped," stated Kargen, his face breaking into a grin, "but it is of no consequence, we shall merely have to find another."

Extra content for Pre-Orders ONLY - Do not miss out!
Apple Books
History of Merceria: Part VI

Western Aggression

Concerned about the future of the realm, King Arnulf decided that the capital of Merceria should be moved to the present location of Wincaster. The Elves had not troubled the kingdom for many decades, and it was felt that Wincaster, far from their western enemy, was an easier place to defend.  Shrewesdale had been considered, but the unpleasant stench of the swamp had swayed the king's decision, and in 582 MC, the king officially took up residence in the newly built palace in Wincaster.

It wasn’t a moment too soon, for within the year another Weldwyn attack came from the western border. This time, they bypassed the city of Kingsford altogether, burning villages and destroying crops. Duke Asmarc of Colbridge, marched north to intercept and destroy the enemy, then continued on to Wincaster, seizing the throne for himself, precipitating the War of the Two Kings.

King Arnulf, who fled as the rebels approached, escaped, riding to Shrewesdale to raise an army to retake his throne. This led to a strange campaign as the two sides both maneuvered their troops to try to gain an advantage, culminating in battle near the Glowan Hills. Known as the Battle of Burrstoke, King Arnulf’s forces proved superior, routing the enemy and slaying Asmarc himself. This battle was distinctive for featuring the first appearance of the heavy cavalry that would later be known as Knights. As a result of their prowess, King Arnulf created the Chivalric Order of the Knights of the Sword.

King Arnulf, now secure in his possession of the warrior's throne, marched westward to Kingsford, then south, recapturing Colbridge. Not content to leave well enough alone, he then crossed the river into Weldwyn, attacking Waldstock. His initial campaign was quite successful, the knights proving their worth in battle, but then he marched further westward, toward the Southport-Summersgate road. Here, he was caught between two Weldwyn armies, one coming north from the coast, the other marching south from the capital. It was a hard-fought battle, with both sides taking many casualties. The knights proved superior to all opposition, but King Arnulf, leading a charge, was taken down. He had raised his visor, the better able to see the battlefield, and a streak of fire, thrown by a Weldwyn Mage, temporarily felled him. In the confusion, the Westerners launched a devastating attack, and King Arnulf was killed. Accounts vary, but it is generally believed he was hacked down by enemy cavalry.

The army fell back to the east in defeat, saved only by the timely arrival of the king's son, Prince Malvor. He was credited with saving the remains of the army and conducting an orderly retreat. Merceria would not cross the border into Weldwyn again for many decades.

Work in Progress Update


I reached a milestone this week. With the completion of the first draft of The Making of a Man, Richard Fitzwilliam's origin story, I have written over one million words!

For the record, that count started with Servant of the Crown and is a number I never imagined I’d reach when I started out. This makes ten books, though three have yet to be published.

Looking back, I’m delighted with the results, and yet, I’ve so many more stories to tell. Where will I be ten more books from now? Believe it or not, I’ve already got that planned out. The Heir to the Crown series will continue, of course, likely to reach fifteen or so ‘full stories’, those with full numbers.

I also have a number of background stories in the Mercerian Tales vein, that will increase the final count. Then there is my new series, The Frozen Flame, which will likely be at least six books, possibly more, and that’s not including three other series I’m contemplating at the moment. All in all, plenty to keep me busy for a few years!

Now, I must get back to work, I’ve a host of details to work out for my next book, Embers.

Until next time, Happy Reading!

Author Spotlight!

Check out these featured books that are free, discounted, or new releases. These authors are returning the favour by sharing my books with their readers.

Legends of Ladis Trilogy: Kingdoms will fall. Men will reign. Washed ashore on the land of Ruyn, Ealrin Bealouve is a man with no memory of his past. Desperate to discover who he was and return to his homeland, Ealrin journeys through a continent ruled by elves, dwarves, and men...

Iron: Kalima, an Earth-colony world with little iron ore and no fossil fuels, is entrenched in a peaceful feudal society. The Jundom of Mamalakah is ruled by the ambitious Hanna Zah-Hill, wife of the Jun First. Deep in debt, she wants technological progress. But Mistress Li, leader of the Xintou House...

Song of Shadow: They said she was out of her mind. The dark truth will shake the foundations of the fae realm! Lorelei refuses to believe her wild visions mean she’s insane. But despite her royal sidhe heritage, she’s banished to a remote priory to prevent her causing trouble. So when a priestess of the Elemental Order urges...

Born of Air: The dragon riders disappeared the year she was born. Kalina is a nobody, an orphan whose only remarkable trait is the silver hair she is forced to hide. But when she overhears that she might be a child of the Valdir, a silver-haired race of dragon riders that disappeared sixteen years ago, she chooses to leave...

Book Giveaways!

While you wait for the release of my next book, here are some great stories for your TBR pile!

- More about the world of Ashes
- History of Merceria- Part VII
- Character Inspirations

-Gamer's Corner
-What are some of my favourite movies?
-More Contests

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Happy reading from Paul J Bennett,
Author of Epic Fantasy in the Land of Merceria and beyond!

Medieval Musings: A Paul J Bennett Newsletter

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