The Rise of the Gatebreakers Sample Chapter I

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“Nah, I’m going to be Chief Gerson some day,” Del said with confidence. “And when that day happens, I’ll make sure that people like you can take your place along with me. See, my papa and a lot of Gersons agree with your mama that we need to start learning from Norcen and Del Sur and even Moquel and Reha. Chief Grandtree has been a competent leader for his time, but he’s too conservative.”

“By your account, it seems like your papa gets along with my mama better than my own papa or grandpapa,” Rabin said, somewhat caustically. “I wonder why they didn’t marry.”

“Well, I was already born when your mama came back from her little adventure in Del Sur City and Moquel,” Del said casually. “No disrespect to my own mama, but I suspect it was just a case of bad timing. Besides, Morgan Grandtree barely accepted a Dranath as a son-in-law after Morgana came back with a bastard. I suspect that he wouldn’t have approved of a Gerson before that.”

This conversation helped kill time but completely discomforted Rabin. “Let’s get back to the topic at hand. My mother and your father sent Donie Gerson to ride for help,” Rabin said. “Somebody has to come for us soon. I’m sure it’ll be like they said. If they can’t come for us, some other Scouts will be up here soon.” He glanced up at the dim outline of the cave entrance. “Do you suppose they took the adults prisoner for ransom or something? That must be why they haven’t come to fetch us.”

Del sighed in the darkness again. “Yeah, Donie’s only two months older than I am and not the brightest star in the Gerson Clan. We can hope the Goddess was kind and didn’t give him hard choices to make. Other than that, I’ve got no answers, Rab,” Del said. “I can’t even imagine why they sent him and not me.”

“When you put it like that, the answer’s obvious,” Rabin said. “I just don’t like the answer.”

“What’s that?”

“If your papa and my mama were sure riders could get out, they would have sent us all away. Maybe they would have tried to ride out too. The village had plenty of horses. No, they were worried that the village was already surrounded.”

“That is an evil thought,” Del said after the thought about it a moment. He paused again. “I’m not asking this to offend you. Don’t some Moquels have some true kind of sixth sense or third eye or something like that? That seems like a sort of a handy thing.”

“I guess you know as much about that as I do,” Rabin said. It’s just an unreliable whisper in the dark, he thought, not even knowing where that thought arose from. “Anyway, real sages are rare and get years of training. It’s not the kind of thing I learned from my stepfather, a metalsmith, or your dad, a Scout.”

“What about your mama?”

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2 responses to “The Rise of the Gatebreakers Sample Chapter I

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