Initiate's Trial: First Sneak Preview

All right then - here it is. Flinch factor solved by shortening the cutoff, just shy of the truly explosive bit.

Please respect, the following is draft, and copyright material. With respect to the author, you are requested not post or forward it off this site, though direct links here for such sharing are welcome.

And - WATCH OUT! If you have not read Stormed Fortress, there be SPOILERS here!!!

The Fellowship Sorcerer entered the Koriani sisterhouse at Whitehold empty-handed, his purpose to close the terms of an ancient score, declared in an hour of bitter defeat, on a morning well over two centuries ago. He came clothed in formality, his robe of immaculate indigo velvet brushing the marble floor. The bright silver braid bordering his sleeves and collar caught the shafts of morning sun, slanted through the hall's seaside windows. As steely light were his eyes, steady as he took the measure of the Prime Matriarch of the Koriathain, enthroned in state panoply to meet him.

Always dangerous, the enchantress sat above everyone else in the room. Her coquette's beauty was regaled in the deep purple gown and gold thread of her supreme office, and her massive chair, placed atop a canopied dais, looked down on the initiate sisters selected to attend the audience. Where the Sorcerer was required to stand at her feet, his immense strength leashed in stilled patience, she glittered in extravagant triumph. Pale aquamarine, her eyes, hard as her jewels of amethyst and diamond, and just as stone cold, as she savored her moment to hound him to humiliation.

She had cornered his game, or so she believed. The flicker of jewels on the gloves worn to mask her grotesquely scarred hands all but shouted contempt. Peremptory, all but drunk on the thrill of her victory, she gestured for him to open the proceedings.

"Prime Matriarch," he greeted, too self-contained to sound cowed, though the grandiose hall with its marble and gilt splendor had been chosen for demeaning spite. The soaring pillars that upheld the domed ceiling diminished his upright stature. Lean and tall as he was, in that setting even his rangy build appeared inconsequential. Certainly the onlooking regard of the ranked Seniors picked to share his Fellowship's demise seared the atmosphere to contempt.

The weathered lines on the Sorcerer's features might have been quarried, his hawk's features deadpan and expressionless. "I have come in accord, to confirm the reckoning owed by our mutual promise."

Perfect with youth, though she was in fact aged, her vitality served by dark spellcraft that cheated death, the Prime Matriarch tipped her coiffed blond head to acknowledge his careful greeting. "Asandir." Her coral lips turned. That small smile of poisonous satisfaction stayed at odds with her cordial tone. "We accept, by your presence, the open acknowledgment that your Fellowship's debt is now due… "

[admin corrected quotes and apostrophes]

(Message edited by admin on April 21, 2008)

originally posted by Catherine Wilson

Dear Janny:


Well done! And, thanks.


originally posted by Clansman


Well, you did warn us. Man, I burn up really crispy.

I too, am hooked, and more than a little singed, but I asked for it. AND (in the words of the immortal Maxwell Smart, played by Don Adams) LOVING IT!

originally posted by Zorana Lewis


That says it all. Actually no, I think Clansman summed it up better so I'll reiterate what he said:


*ahem* And now I've got that out of my system. *grin* I too am completely Hooked. An awesome distraction from the blood, guts, gore, death and destruction currently taking up all my time (University essay time again!)and now, after I've recovered from my quivering heap of O.O -ness I can say Thank You for giving us this.

originally posted by Auna

Ooo, most excellent choice. Thanks Janny!

originally posted by Waliam

Oh. Very good Janny. Just sink the hook that little bit deeper into your loyal fans and keep them hanging. This makes me drool with anticipation and patience is a downfall of mine. Thanks for the tease . Can't wait for the publication.

originally posted by Hellcat

What Clansman said!!! ARRRRGHHHH!



originally posted by Clansman

Precisely: What debt? Anyone remember, since this is a spoiler thread? Methinks I need to start a re-read, 'cause I don't have a clue.

And 200 years? Hmmmmm…

originally posted by Neil

"well over two centuries ago"…which might even be after Stormed Fortress?

More than 2 centuries? Goodbye to Sulfin Erend in that case then unless a quick trip to 5 centries fountain has become a popular holiday destination.

Or was the debt incurred 100-200 years before Arithon's arrival on Athera?

Why would the Fellowship have a debt to koriani?

"cornered his game, or so she believed" …hmm…hmm.

"dark spellcraft" doesn't seem to have come off too well in this series to date…I await, I hope, her disappointment in the next few paragraphs in this book sometime before Summer 2011 :wink:

originally posted by Clansman

Though I must say, I don't think Selidie is going to wear that satisfied smirk for very long…This is Asandir she is dealing with, after all.

originally posted by Zorana Lewis

I'm trying to figure out what the SF spoilers were in there, because at first glance there is nothing that screams SF…which suggests it isn't overly obvious…or suggests I've finally cracked like I've been threatening to do for years! :smiley:

originally posted by Zorana Lewis

Urgh…this 'you can't edit after 5 minutes thing is annoying at times'. lol.

Anyhoo - there are SF Spoilers here - guess it's polite to warn you.

I'm guessing that the '200 years' bit is mostly pre-SF (or at least I'd like it to be) because, as others have said, it would mean that over the past few books characters such as Sulfin Evend have been developed, only to end up 6ft under (i.e. dead) from the outset of this book. Twould be a shame if that is the case, especially the Sulfin/Lysaer duo going on…

It would also mean no Arithon's daughter, unless she were specifically trained in longevity by the Fellowship, Biedar, or even the Koriathain… though I have to admit the irony of having Elaira go through all that trouble to stop the Koriathain having control over her daughter only for said daughter to go and join on her own volition would probably kill half the population of WoLaS fans in one fell swoop! hehehe.

originally posted by Brittani

OKay first I would like to say, I don't know whos idea it was to get a sneak preview almost three years before the publication but I could almost shoot them. Is it really summer of 2011? Jeesh!

Janny you were right, I am officially burned to a crisp!

So now onto speculations…

I am thinking that the 200 years ago had to pre-SF. Like Zorana said, if it wasn't that would mean that all of the characters Janny has developed would be dead and I just don't see that as being the way things are gonna go.

I can't wait to find out what Asandir does to Morriel. Won't it be great if they figured out a way to make her release Seledie's true self.

Ohh Im Excited!

3 years? Are you serious?


This said, barring the unforeseen, it should take place much sooner than projected above. :smiley:

Please, people, do not toss out even casual speculation with regard to publication dates - somebody invariably sees that, and takes it for "official" - then misinformation multiplies. Already several posts have fixed on the numbers and repeated them…a late in comer may not read the original flippant post, and go larking off, reposting someplace else…I want to avoid that!

The publisher has tentative plans. Though a nice sweet date has been discussed and projected, I will not announce it! No way, before draft is done, and before the book is actually in production, AND set in the publisher's catalog! Until that last step, the schedule is tenuous and subject to change, for all sorts of crazymaking reasons.

Schedules get shifted!! I could be on time, but another author, late in, could take the slot, this far out…I'd prefer to avoid the manic fury that happens when a release date gets moved.

Please - unless I post something, or confirm it, it's not solid information. Let the work on the book get done, first. :smiley:

originally posted by Zorana Lewis

Bu.but…but does that mean that the date I heard from my cousin's sister's friend who just happened to hear from his brother's teacher's son who just happened to be told by his newphew's friend's father's boss was wrong?!

Well darn it! Thought I had an exclusive that I could go Nah Nah Nah Nah Nah with! *pouts*


originally posted by Brittani

For the record…

I actually read "summer of 2011" right here. In fact it was posted at about 9:30 this morning.

and besdies

My family all read Steven King novels…creepy

If your cousin had a sister, wouldn't the sister be a cousin too?

Just kidding… My Bad. I read it and thought it was an announcement about an estimated date that was being quoted by someone.

originally posted by Clansman

I think Neil is tugging very, very hard on more than one leg.

originally posted by Zorana Lewis

Well you would think the sister of a cousin makes her a cousin as well, but the step-sister of one of my cousins doesn't see herself as my cousin. So *grins* Technicalities. hehehehe.

Either way, I was only joking. :smiley:

originally posted by Clansman

"She had cornered his game, or so she believed…Peremptory, all but drunk on the thrill of her victory, she gestured for him to open the proceedings."

To me,the words "or so she believed" are the foreshadowing of yet another comeuppance for Morriel/Selidie. But first, we must track down this reckoning, or debt from "the terms of an ancient score, declared in an hour of bitter defeat, on a morning well over two centuries ago."

Firstly, what is the hour of bitter defeat that occurred 200 years ago?

Secondly, what is the debt (Selidie's word) or reckoning (Asandir's word)? (The two words being different is NOT an accident. Janny has taught us that lesson.) What was the deal that was struck?

Thirdly, when was the bargain struck? I agree with the above posts (Janny cackles maniacally in the background) that we cannot be too far past SF. Too many good characters would have been lost. Therefore, we can only assume that this is around 150 years before the fulfillment of the West Gate Prophecy.

Any guesses?

originally posted by Zorana Lewis

Well as to point 1.) The actual wording of the bitter defeat bit is: 'declared in an hour of bitter defeat, on a morning well over two centuries ago.'

Which means it is more than 200 years since that moment in the book. Now, the last bit of SF mentions the birth of Arithon's daughter, so we're talking at least 9 months have gone by. So…IF this is a direct follow on, then the 200 years ago bit would be around 5470ish…give or take a decade or two (and make the dangerous assumption that it is 200 years on, and not more, as the sentence does indeed say 'well over two centuries'. lol. The only thing I know that happened around that time is Cilaldis leaving the continent in search of the Paravians (he did this in 5462), so I'm probably way off the mark, though it could be bitter…but a defeat? hehehe