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The Ballad of Penumbria I: A King's Ransom

345 pages5 hours


Penumbria is a kingdom without a king, a land without hope, where every citizen is a slave to inviolable laws, and the regent, Duke Botewulf Blagden, rules with harsh edicts and unpredictable cruelty.

In the capitol city of Langford, a young serf-turned-thief named Dava, suffering from an iron anklet too small for his growing leg, finally despairs of life and seeks to end his misery in the sterile desert of the Endless Emptiness. But a seeming chance encounter with three strange travelers sets him on a new path. One of the travelers is the Baroness Bronwyn d'Orlynn, a childhood friend and one of the few people he had ever loved. Her companion and protector, a knight errant named Sir Rismon de'Allanor, watches Dava with mistrustful eyes. The leader of the group is an enigmatic peasant known only as Lamion, who Sir Rismon titles 'lord'.

Through tales told on the journey, Dava realizes that Lamion is none other than the missing king of Penumbria, returned from Luminalia across the stormy Mare Discidium. In a magnanimous gesture, Lamion takes Dava as his personal squire, and the wall of nobility and peasantry separating Dava and Bronwyn crumbles.

Lamion proclaims his intent to travel to Kingshold Castle high on the ridgeline of Mount Greyashe, and confront Blagden and claim the throne. Still, Lamion has only a few followers to stand against Duke Blagden's armies. How can he hope to regain his throne with no political power, no weapons, and just a handful of misfits? And more than that, where is the symbol of the king's right to rule? Where is the Crystal Sword?

A KING'S RANSOM is the first volume in THE BALLAD OF PENUMBRIA medieval fantasy series.

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