Snippet from Melkorka

MelkorkaFinalFrontCoverLightning struck again, but this time it struck towards the ground. The bolt tore through one man near Jhar.

Branimir gasped.

The man’s cry echoed above the sounds of battle as the tormenting fire ripped through his chest and out of his back. Blood sprayed from the gaping hole.

“Andrik…” Mojmir wept in recognition.

Dorofej’s gritty voice was heard above the battle, echoing Mojmir’s murmurs, “Andrik!” The old man sprang to the fallen Highborn that burned from the lightning strike. In a heap of his heavy enigmatic robes, he knelt in the pool of blood.

Branimir became fixated on the scene, watching in absolute horror.

“Leave him!” It may have been Falmagon that instructed Dorofej. It was hard to be certain.

Dorofej obviously ignored the words. His frail hands sank deep into Andrik’s flesh, blood surged over his shaking hands.

Branimir tuned into Dorofej’s whispered words despite the raging battle. They sounded ancient, flowing like a song. A glow of red and yellow glowed beneath the Andrik’s skin as the old man manipulated the Koldovstvo. As the spell increased in complexity, a clear difference presented itself in Dorofej. The man began to show signs of increased aging. Additional wrinkles began to form under his eyes, and his hair began to lighten and lengthen. His skin sunk against his bones, and his voice rasped and croaked. It was likely his bone was turning to ash beneath the flesh.

“Dorofej!” Jhar pulled the old man away from Andrik’s body, “You’ll kill yourself!”

“No!” Dorofej fought against Jhar’s grip, but was too weak to struggle. His eyes scanned the body of Andrik. The flesh had mended considerably, but a gaping hole remained from chest to back. The damage to the body was too great.

“The man is dea –” Jhar began, before an arrow the size of his staff tore through his skull. The younger man’s body collapsed on top of Dorofej, pressing the old man’s brittle bones to the ground.

“No!” Dorofej screamed.

“No!” Branimir echoed.



melkorkadiscount03Kaelandur was forged by the Highborn to slay one of their own, Nedezhda Mager. As their slave, Branimir Baran never thought to question his cruel masters until he is forced to take part in the execution. His actions begin a chain of events that will lead him to confront demons, cannibals, and himself as he is forced to question his own morality and the true meaning of good and evil.

If you missed the insightful interview with Angela Hartley, author of Copper Descent, you can find it HERE! A little more personal than what you will find in my typical biography.


7 thoughts on “Snippet from Melkorka

  1. I’m always very curious about name selection and creation, Joshua. Do you find it difficult? How do you decide? I wonder if it comes from a history of reading the fantasy genre, because I didn’t grow up reading it. My wonder leads me to believe having done so wouldn’t make naming characters as daunting. I enjoyed this excerpt.

    1. I’m very particular about names actually. I spent most of my childhood reading hard fantasy with complex names, but there was usually a method to the madness. It is important to me that names fit the time period and the same language patterns. I would never have a book with Edward, Rayne, and Ezekiel (unless explanation was provided). It has to match context and culture. I imagine some of my names can seem difficult when compared to some books or genres, but it’s meant to give an old feel. Great example is one of my great, great, great, ancetors names was Bartholmeous and Pefeyffelmann.

      1. Ahh, got it. Sorry, if my question seemed elementary. I just have no real background to pull from when I try to understand the genre. Old makes sense. I have begun reading more of it over the last few years. I didn’t study the topic at all in college, which, sadly, I now regret. Now those are some million dollar names. Wow. My mother’s family is from Scotland (Vikings), and among her many cousins with cool names, she has one whose name is Thor. I find that fabulous.

        I enjoyed reading more about you, as well. Funny how much of your teenage years mirror mine. I found myself nodding along.

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