Read The Phoenix Endangered Online

Authors: James Mallory

Tags: #Fantasy - Epic, #Fiction - Fantasy, #Fiction, #Fantasy, #General, #Epic, #Fantasy - General, #Fantasy Fiction, #Science Fiction And Fantasy, #Magic, #Elves, #Magicians

The Phoenix Endangered

BOOK: The Phoenix Endangered
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Acclaim for
The Phoenix Endangered
“[Expands our view of this] world’s desert societies and the secrets hidden far beneath the sands. As the young characters learn to accept responsibility for their actions, their trials increase in difficulty. Solidly developed characters, appealing magical companions, and an intriguing tale make this a good addition, along with its predecessor, to any fantasy collection.”

Library Journal

 

 

“Lackey and Mallory continue to develop their intriguing characters and expand their world in the second book of the Enduring Flame series. The two protagonists grow while staying true to their roots, and their villain is complex and sympathetic. Shaiara, perhaps the best character in the series, gets a larger role and helps mold the satisfying plot in this enjoyable read.”

Romantic Times BOOKreviews

 

 

“Shaiara is a plucky and resourceful character, rising above the tropes common to multicultural fantasy. Readers can rest assured that Lackey and Mallory will not let them down.”

SFRevu

 

 

“Young adult readers will enjoy the action-packed
The Phoenix Endangered.
The exploits of the teen heroes and their camaraderie are fun to follow. Additionally, the two male buddies learn the destructive nature of unchecked or unbalanced power. An enchanting quest fantasy.”

Baryon
BY MERCEDES LACKEY AND JAMES MALLORY
THE OBSIDIAN TRILOGY
The Outstretched Shadow
To Light a Candle
When Darkness Falls
THE ENDURING FLAME
The Phoenix Unchained
The Phoenix Endangered
The Phoenix Transformed
*
TOR BOOKS BY MERCEDES LACKEY
Firebird
Sacred Ground
DIANA TREGARDE NOVELS
Burning Water
Children of the Night
Jinx High
THE HALFBLOOD CHRONICLES
(with Andre Norton)
The Elvenbane
Elvenblood
Elvenborn
ALSO BY JAMES MALLORY
Merlin: The Old Magic
Merlin: The King’s Wizard
Merlin: The End of Magic

*
Forthcoming

The
      

             
Phoenix

   
Endangered

Book Two of
The Enduring Flame

Mercedes Lackey
         
     and James Mallory

A TOM DOHERTY ASSOCIATES BOOK
NEW YORK

NOTE: If you purchased this book without a cover, you should be aware that this book is stolen property. It was reported as “unsold and destroyed” to the publisher, and neither the authors nor the publisher have received any payment for this “stripped book.”
This is a work of fiction. All of the characters, organizations, and events portrayed in this novel are either products of the authors’ imaginations or are used fictitiously.
THE PHOENIX ENDANGERED: BOOK TWO OF THE ENDURING FLAME
Copyright © 2008 by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory
All rights reserved.
A Tor Book
Published by Tom Doherty Associates, LLC
175 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10010
www.tor-forge.com
Tor
®
is a registered trademark of Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.
ISBN 978-0-7653-5507-2
First Edition: September 2008
First Mass Market Edition: August 2009
Printed in the United States of America
0  9  8  7  6  5  4  3  2  1

FOR DENNIS—


quare habe tibi quidquid hoc libelli, qualecumque quod, o patrona virgo, plus uno maneat perenne saeclo.

—CATULLUS

Prologue
I
N THE MOONTURN
of Flowering Harrier Gillain’s best friend had cast his first spell of the High Magick, something nobody in the Nine Cities had done in almost a thousand years. Because of that, Tiercel Rolfort had begun having visions of a mysterious Lake of Fire and a Fire Woman who—though beautiful—was terrifying as well. Hoping to put an end to his visions—or at least get an explanation for them—Tiercel went in search of a Wildmage, since a millennium after the fall of the Endarkened, there were no other Mages that anyone knew of.
And of course his best friend went with him. Harrier had known Tiercel since they were both small children; their friendship was a strong one, and Harrier was completely convinced (based on long experience) that Tiercel would only get into trouble if he went anywhere by himself.
As it turned out, he got into trouble even with Harrier there to try to talk sense into him, and the search for a Wildmage led them both farther than either could ever have dreamed, into the Veiled Lands where the Elves lived. There, Tiercel and Harrier met people who they had only known from wondertales of the ancient Time of Mages: Jermayan, and the black dragon Ancaladar, and even Idalia. The Elves had confirmed Tiercel’s worst fears: the Dark, banished for so many centuries, was awakening again. And apparently the Light had chosen Tiercel to do something about it.
The Elves would tell him nothing more than that, fearing that if they did, they might cause him to reject some plan of action that might be the only hope of destroying the Darkness. Tiercel must choose his own path.
But they did not leave him entirely helpless. Tiercel had already learned that his Magegift was useless without the power to cast the spells, power that the ancient Armethaliehan Mages had harvested from the people of their city. In place of that, Jermayan offered him something unheard-of in all the centuries of the Bonding of dragons: Sandalon Elvenking would use the one Great Spell that each Elven Mage might cast once in their lives to transfer Ancaladar’s Bond to Tiercel, granting him the power to fuel his magic, but at the cost of three lives: Sandalon’s, Jermayan’s, and that of Sandalon’s dragon Petrivoch. Only the fact that Jermayan was dying—having reached the end of an Elf’s long-but-not-infinite span of years—and the fact that the need was so very great—persuaded either Tiercel or Ancaladar to agree.
Though no one knew where the Lake of Fire that Tiercel needed to find might be, his visions suggested that it must be in a desolate and uninhabited place, far from the haunts of men. The only place the Elves knew that might be the destination Tiercel sought was the Madiran Desert, far to the south. And so Tiercel, Harrier, and Ancaladar set out on their journey. But the Gods of the Wild Magic were not yet finished with their weaving….

One

Called to Magic

h
E’D NEVER THOUGHT
he’d see a unicorn, Harrier thought crossly, and like so many things he’d thought he’d wanted to see when he was back in Armethalieh (like Elves and dragons and Wildmages) the reality was nothing like he’d expected it to be.

Oh, sure, Kareta was beautiful. In fact, she was the most beautiful thing he’d ever seen. But he hadn’t expected her to sucker him into falling into the stream with most of his clothes on—and make him lose his shirt—and then laugh her silly head off about it just as if she were one of his idiot brothers.

Of course, maybe that was just what unicorns were like. How would he know? Nobody in human lands had seen one since … well, since the time of the Magic Unicorn Shalkan and Kellen the Poor Orphan Boy.

Thinking about Kellen, a hero out of the Nine Cities’ most ancient legends, made Harrier shiver just a little, and not with cold (although he was soaking wet, and the walk back to the wagon from the woods wasn’t that pleasant in wet clothes), but because only a fortnight ago, he’d been talking to the person who’d taught that very hero to hold a
sword. Who’d helped the Wild Magic turn Kellen into a Knight-Mage, a great warrior who could defeat the Endarkened.

With that thought, the red leather satchel he had slung over his shoulder, small as it was, suddenly seemed incredibly heavy. Because it contained the Three Books of the Wild Magic, brought to him
(not to Tiercel, to
him) by the unicorn Kareta, and if Harrier could believe her (did unicorns tell lies?), he hadn’t been granted the opportunity to become just an ordinary Wildmage—as if there could be such a thing—but a Knight-Mage.

Just like the hero Kellen had been.

Nobody knew how Kellen’s story ended, though everyone knew how it began, and everyone knew the ending of his sister’s, the Blessed Saint Idalia’s. She married the King of the Elves (so the tales went), was granted immortality by the Light, and lived forever in the Elven Lands. But over the last several moonturns, Harrier had learned a lot about how the stories he’d always taken for granted as being, well,
wondertales
(which meant they were sort-of true and sort-of not) were completely wrong about all the important things. Jermayan wasn’t King of the Elves, just to begin with. And Elves certainly didn’t live forever.

And having fought Goblins, and seen magical things that he had no name for, met Elves and dragons and all sorts of Otherfolk that had left the lands of Men in the time of the Great Flowering, Harrier’d thought he’d gotten used to things being strange by now. He and Tiercel had left Armethalieh almost four moonturns ago, at the beginning of summer, looking for a Wildmage who could put an end to Tiercel’s little problem, as Harrier had thought of it then. Tiercel said he was having visions. Harrier thought Tiercel was having bad dreams.

But they really
were
visions, and that was only the start of problems that just got worse and worse. At least they had Ancaladar with them now, because the Elves had cast an incredibly powerful spell (that they hadn’t been sure at the time was even going to work) to transfer Ancaladar’s
Bond from Jermayan to Tiercel, because otherwise Tiercel, whether he was a High Mage or not, wouldn’t have the power he needed to cast his spells. So now Tiercel had the power, and all he had to do was
learn
all those spells, so when he’d gotten up this morning, Harrier had thought they only had two problems to deal with.

BOOK: The Phoenix Endangered
13.22Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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