Fire and Ice Young Adult and New Adult Books

The Sword of Lumina #2

Mira's Hope

by Erin Elliott



"Mira's Hope" by Erin ElliottCould you face your greatest fears to save the ones you love?

Galena, finding herself restored to full health, heads out on the second part of her journey to recover the Sword of Lumina from a cave Mira designed to protect the famous blade.

Heading toward the Western woods, she discovers how to use her magical powers now that she has no restraints. Galena has to re-learn how to fight and live on a daily basis, using magic that she has had very little access to before now.

Together with Elenio and Tark, they meet new friends and visit new villages, until Tark decides to stay behind and train an army of elves for the upcoming war against Rau.

Will Galena be able to face the fears she didn't know she had and retrieve the sword? Or will she die in the cave that was designed to be the greatest challenge for Mira's only hope?


 

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Chapter One

Rau leaned back on his throne, pleasure and satisfaction apparent in his relaxed face and with the ease of his movements. It was finished. He no longer felt the troublesome elf that had nearly cost him so much. Because of her own stupid pride, she had been the reason for her own demise. Haulua doubted him, but in the end, it was his own clever spell that defeated Mira’s only hope.

Rau closed his eyes and sighed wearily. He would sleep peacefully tonight. It would be the first night he had in months. This whole ordeal weighed heavily on his mind, both in his waking hours as well as his sleeping ones. It proved all-consuming to him and he’d suffered accordingly.

He contemplated an early retirement for the night, savoring the idea of a full night’s rest once more, when he noticed flashes of light from different places in his throne room. Sighing, he watched as the lights gathered, collecting in the middle of the room in the form of a tall, muscular man. The light in the room grew brighter and brighter still, until Rau had to shield his eyes from the glaring rays. Why Haulua felt it necessary to appear to him this way was beyond him. Still frustrated, he closed his eyes to avoid being blinded. The god knew he couldn’t stand the brightness.

He heard a faint pop and removing his hands from his eyes, bowed low to his creator and Lord. Haulua stood before him, hands clasped behind his back, as he regarded the room in which he was standing in. Rau watched him warily while keeping his head bowed, but Haulua seemed to be in no rush. The god appeared to be extremely tense; the past several weeks had been extremely difficult for him as well. Rau noticed the creases around his eyes seemed to have deepened, his lips were nothing, but a thin line and he stood a little straighter, almost as if the muscles in his back were too stiff to slump over even in the slightest. The god began to pace across the room several times, always stopping to examine some small bit of the wall. Rau realized this was to show him who the true lord and ruler was more than to inspect a few rocks.

Coming directly in front of Rau, he stopped. “Have you disposed of the girl elf?” he whispered in his deadliest voice.

“She used more magic than even she was capable of,” Rau responded, his eyes returning to the floor.

“Are you sure? Did you see her body?” he said in a quieter voice still.

“No, but...” Rau started.

“Did your torlics bring back reports of the battle?” Haulua asked, his voice so low now that Rau had to strain to hear it.

“No torlics have returned, my—”

“Then how can you be so sure?”

“She may not be dead yet, but it is only a matter of time. I no longer feel her or the use of her magic.” Rau chanced a look at Haulua’s face before returning his gaze to the floor once more. He felt hate rise within him as Haulua made him doubt himself. The god feared everything and that fear was starting to rub off on him.

Haulua resumed his pacing, his toga making slight rustling sounds on the floor as he moved. Rau found the sound more disconcerting than being yelled at. That sound meant Haulua was deep in thought and by no means feeling victorious.

“I am not so sure. Mira’s too calm, too at peace with what has happened. I would think some type of emotion would show through, but then again, it is Mira. I would not put it past her to have some type of plan developed in case this particular elf did not work out, but still…” He paused once more, his back to Rau.

“I don’t see how the elf girl could have managed to wiggle her way out of this one. It isn’t like before when I knew she was alive even though she resisted using magic, so I couldn’t find her. I feel nothing this time, as if she has been wiped from creation,” Rau said, a touch of the panic he was beginning to feel, creeping into his voice. He suddenly felt even less sure of himself as he watched his creator express his own unease through his relentless pacing. Curse Haulua for being weak, Rau thought bitterly. He raised his face again, watching his lord ponder the situation more.

“Interesting. I can feel your hatred of me. It radiates in every shadow. Have you forgotten your place?  Have you forgotten who your creator is? “Haulua stared at Rau, anger dancing in his eyes as he waited for a reply.

“Never, my lord,” Rau stated in an oily voice.

“Good, see to it that you don’t. Just for my own personal reassurance, I want to you to send out more torlics to confirm her death. I want her body brought back here where I may see her myself before I will be at peace. Her traveling companions must be punished by death as well. We don’t want the elf population to think that they can get away with this.”

“Yes, my lord. It will take several days before I can have another small group of torlics there, but it shall be done.”

“See to it that it is. Maybe once I have viewed this pathetic elf’s lifeless body, will I finally break down Mira’s calm demeanor,” Haulua said more to himself as he chuckled quietly.

Rau bowed lower still in respect and as a way to shield his eyes, as Haulua started to break apart into millions of tiny light fragments and fly through the room.

When the last light disappeared from sight bringing the room into an eerie darkness, Rau slowly rose to his feet. He would take pleasure in bringing back the lifeless body of this elf to his castle. He might even put her on a stake, just outside his castle walls for all to see what happens when you try to cross him. Rau smiled to himself at the thought of the fear that would be inflicted in all the elves with his new decorations. He called for a new general as his last army had been destroyed with the little bit of magic the troublesome elf had managed. In a few days’ time, he would appease his lord and then, a new reign would begin. This time, it would be harsher, keeping the elves from ever considering going against him again.