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A Requiem for Caelus
Book One:
Va'Shan Trilogy

RELEASE DATE:  Summer 2013
On the planet Caelus, magic was as natural as the sun or the grass.  It thrived in the trees and the water, in the wind and the rain.  And it thrived in the people.  Possessing a myriad of abilities, depending on where one lived and grew up, the people of Caelus were cultured and wise, creative and intelligent, using the abilities their gods imparted on them with care and wisdom.  But the past has not always been so peaceful.  The various clans of Caelus have warred with each other before, vicious affairs that killed thousands and never solved anything.  The last war had only ended five years ago and the tensions and feuds were still fresh.  War was in the air again.

This was all to change with the wedding of the beautiful Lorelei Heartstealer of the Kar Clan to the handsome Lothar Mistshrouder of the Fikir Clan.  The binding of these two clans, who had been feuding for centuries, was to bring the other restless clans to the negotiating table and seal a treaty of peace for all time.  

But it was not to be.

The Va’Shan Empire had been ravaging the galaxy for millennia.  Their sophisticated war machines and elite shock troops, called the Destructor’s Hand, invaded planet after planet looking for slaves and resources.  Many had attempted to stop them, none had succeeded.  The Kral, supreme leader of the Va’Shan, held his reigns of power with an adamantine grip that none dared oppose.  When a planet was taken by the Va’Shan, all females over the age of eighteen and all makes over the age of six were slaughtered without mercy.  The remaining males and the females under the age of thirteen were taken to various planets, separated from others of their kind, to be trained as the elite shock troops the Empire ate so ravenously.  For the remaining females, it was worse.  They would be taken to the Kral himself, who would choose those who were beautiful and caught his eye for his vast harem.  Those who were beautiful and not chosen by the Kral were used as forced prostitutes for the pleasure of the nobility and those who had gained favor with the Kral.  Those who were not considered beautiful were fed to the Destructor’s Hand, to be used as they saw fit, instilling a fanatic loyalty in the weapon that was the Empire’s forceful arm.

When Caelus is picked at random as the next target of the Va’Shan’s insatiable appetite, the world of the clans is changed forever.  The attack came in the middle of a warm spring day.  Lothar was training young apprentices in the Way of the Fikir, teaching them in the fundamental mental process necessary to master the power the gods had bestowed upon their clan.  The rain of fire and death from the sky was horrific, the small city outside of which they trained, destroyed in a matter of minutes.  When the first Destructor’s Hand began killing the children around Lothar with their range weapons, bluish bolts of intense heat and energy, he realized that this had turned into a life or death situation.  Gathering those around him still alive, he rushed off into the forest and ran for an entire day, heading for forgotten caves where he and Lorelei had gone off to be alone when their parents had strictly forbidden such things.  After several days of hiding, Lothar makes his way back to the city to find that it has been totally destroyed, the palace in which Lorelei and her family had been staying, reduced to so much rubble.  Believing her to be dead, Lothar takes the children under his care and begins to work his way across the land, hoping to find anyone else alive.

Lorelei had just left the palace to find Lothar, to bring him the lunch he had forgotten and to watch him with the children he loved so.  When the first explosions occurred, she thought them to be premature fireworks in celebration of her up-coming wedding that evening.  She quickly realized that it was more than that and before she knew what was happening, the world around her was falling apart.  Buried by a collapsing wall, she woke up laying next to several other girls she didn’t know, naked and bound.  Within a few hours she was roughly taken aboard a strange ship that had no sails and soon found herself vomiting violently as he stomach reacted to the ascent.  After a few weeks of travel, she found herself in a line-up with other beautiful women, all naked, being leered at by a group of haughtily dressed men who were odd looking in their features, tall and skinny as if they hadn’t eaten enough.  She soon found herself in the Kral’s harem and the night that she should have spent with her beloved Lothar in a passionate embrace became a night of rough and rude pain at the harsh and old hands of the Kral himself.

Thus begins the epic journey of Lothar and Lorelei, both thinking the other dead and trying anything that will allow them to live just one more day with the hope that they will find their loved one and end this nightmare.  Lothar joins up with one of his bitterest enemies, Jo’tal Skyshaker of the Edthul Clan, the most war-like of the clans.  Believing that they are the last of their kind, they struggle to survive, hounded by the Cleansers and their own hatreds.  Lorelei realizes quickly that the only way to survive in the brutal and competitive world of the Kral’s harem is to become the Kral’s First and then avenge herself and her people by assassinating him as he sleeps in her arms.

Requiem for Caelus is the first book in the struggle for Lothar and Lorelei and those around them to adapt to their destroyed way of life and incorporate their magical talents into a world of starships and technology.

A Requiem for Caelus

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