This weekend Renee Scattergood is launching the Shadow Stalker Part 1 Bundle – the first six episodes in both e-book and print. As a special treat she has written a new scene for us; taken from the series, but from the point of view of Drevin’s son – Makari.
Shadow Stalker Episode 6: Chapter 5
Written from Makari’s point of view (Drevin’s son)
I stood, my arms folded over my chest as I watched Selyn, the head of the Council of Elders on the Dark Isle, question Kado. I had been sent to collect Kado’s foster daughter, the delohi-saqu, and bring her to my father. It was proving more difficult than anticipated, since the elders had chased her off. They had managed to lure Kado back, but not before he’d secured Auren. I had already done a sweep of the village, and found no clue to her whereabouts. My patience was wearing thin.
“This would go so much easier for you, if you’d just tell us where the traitor is. Kado, you of all people should understand we are only trying to protect our people from her. She is a danger to the shadow stalkers and to the people of the Serpent Isles. Our future Foramar should not be protecting our enemy,” Selyn said.
“He is our enemy,” Cathnor said, tilting his head towards me.
It was the same story, one I’d heard a dozen times. I hadn’t known when my father gave the order to invade, that these people; the shadow stalkers and the members of the Coalition, had been taken in by the innocence of the delohi-saqu. Some were ignorant to her very existence. A fact which no doubt made it easier for her to take control of their minds. Ignorance is a man’s worst enemy after all.
“They are stalling for time,” Selyn whispered in my ear.
“I’ve already told you I left Auren in the forest. I told her if I didn’t return she should leave. She could be anywhere on the Dark Isle by now,” Kado said.
I gazed at him. His eyes told me he was telling the truth, but there was more to it. He was leaving out vital information to throw us off. The elders might be fooled, but I knew the delohi-saqu was close. I could almost feel her.
“You can use your connection to find her,” another of the elders said smugly.
“I could,” Kado said, lifting his chin. “But I won’t.”
Selyn shook his head, slowly. “You know what will happen if she leaves this island. She will enslave the Serpent Isle.”
Cathnor snorted. “Hasn’t Drevin already done that?”
I glared at him. I didn’t always agree with my father’s decisions, but I believed in his cause. “My father has been freeing the people of the Serpent Isles, not enslaving them.”
“Freeing them by separating them from their children and torturing them into submission?”
The shadow stalker, Cathnor, looked repulsed, but Kado’s expression hadn’t changed. The future Foramar was dangerous. That was clear. He’d be a formidable enemy, and I was not entirely convinced he was as helpless a prisoner as the elders had led me to believe.
My father had warned me these people would challenge my beliefs and he was right. I could feel the ache in my hands; the tightly balled fists a sure sign I was close to losing control. “The cleansing is not torture. It purifies the mind, so it is no longer susceptible to mind control,” I explained calmly.
Cathnor started to speak again, but Kado silenced him with a nudge. “Tell me, Makari. Is that how it felt to you when you were an innocent child being beaten on a daily basis? Do you truly feel free?”
“My mind is free,” I said. It irritated me, this need to defend myself. Kado was dangerous, and I needed to remember that.
I didn’t owe him an answer. He was the prisoner here. Yet I wanted to respond, or I did until my gaze was drawn to a lizard lurking near the window. There was something odd about it, and when I looked into its glassy eyes, for a moment it felt as though I had joined with the animal. It was an odd kind of recognition I struggled to understand.
“I can see your father’s ways confuse you. You were sure of him until he started this war. Now that you have witnessed the death and destruction at his hand, you question his motives. Don’t you?”
Kado was trying to distract me from the lizard, and it dawned on me that he knew what it was. Was it possible that this was the delohi-saqu? It meant she had abilities other shadow stalkers didn’t. But it made sense. I almost smiled. In this form she would be easy to capture.
“I will find her,” I said. “I don’t need him.”
Kado regarded me, eyebrows raised. “You will never find her. I’ve made sure of it.”
His bluff held no weight because I already knew where she was. Now that we were connected in a tangible way, I felt her presence. I felt drawn to her, and the connection would lead me right to her – wherever she scurried off to.
Shadow Stalker Episode Guide
The Hidden Truth (Episode 1)
A young shadow stalker is destined to enslave the people of the Serpent Isles, and the Galvadi Empire want this child of prophecy dead. Auren Trasks perfectly normal life is disrupted when the Galvadi invade, and she learns a startling secret about her past. A secret that will change her life forever.
The Delohi-Saqu’s Fate (Episode 2)
Auren is being targeted by the Council of Elders, and the only one who could put an end to their corruption is her father. But leaving the Dark Isle would turn Kado against her.
Shadows’ Betrayal (Episode 3)
After seeing the monster she will become, Auren swears not to leave the Dark Isle. Despite that, the elders are conspiring against her. To escape their scheming, she and Kado decide to explore the Dark Isle. But worse things await them in the forests.
Forbidden Love (Episode 4)
Kado and Auren survive a deadly storm, but when Auren is forbidden from pursuing love with another young shadow stalker, will it be enough to drive a wedge between her and her foster father?
Destiny Reconciled Part 1 (Episode 5)
Auren and Kado accept that they may not be able to avoid her leaving the Dark Isle. Now they have to prepare for that eventuality. Will the training be more than Auren can handle?
Destiny Reconciled Part 2 (Episode 6)
Cathnor has been arrested and is facing a death sentence. The Dark Isle is out of control, and Kado is the only one who can help his people. So he prepares Auren for the possibility that she may have to leave the Dark Isle without him and face her destiny alone, but can she leave him and do what must be done?
Renee Scattergood, author of the fantasy series, Shadow Stalker, and novella, Demon Hunt, lives in Australia with her husband and daughter. Aside from writing, she loves reading (Fantasy, of course), watching movies with her family, and doing crafts and science experiments with her daughter. Find out more about her, and sign up for her newsletter on her blog: http://reneescattergood.com