Song of the Summer King (The Summer King Chronicles) (Volume 1)
Jess E. Owen
Shard is a gryfon in danger. He and other young males of the Silver Isles are old enough to fly, hunt, and fight--old enough to be threats to their ruler, the red gryfon king. In the midst of the dangerous initiation hunt, Shard takes the unexpected advice of a strange she-wolf who seeks him out, and hints that Shard's past isn’t all that it seems. To learn his past, Shard must abandon the future he wants and make allies of those the gryfons call enemies. When the gryfon king declares open war on the wolves, it throws Shard’s past and uncertain future into the turmoil between. Now with battle lines drawn, Shard must decide whether to fight beside his king . . .or against him. Honorable Mention in the 2013 Writer's Digest International Self-Published Book Awards. Winner of the 2013 Global E-book award for Fantasy.
grumbled something and foam dripped from his snout. Shard lifted his ears. Unlike Catori’s words that he hadn’t wanted badly enough to understand, he listened closely to Lapu’s last words, and Lapu made himself understood. “Nightwing,” he rasped in disbelief, still clenching to life. Shard’s beak clicked twice before he could speak. Are you Rashard, son-of-the-Nightwing? The raven had asked. He wasn’t sure if Lapu would understand in turn. “No. His…his son.” “Then I am at peace.” Lapu’s red
ahead of him whisper a name. They must be brothers. “Fair winds,” whispered the older, then shoved off from the ground, wings beating hard to gain sky. Shard ground his beak, not looking. His heart shoved ice through his body and heat roiled in his belly. He wondered, if that was the reception of one half-blood with a dishonored father, what would his be? Gulls cried above. Shard thought one of them sounded in pain, then realized it was a female gryfon, a gryfess keening sorrow into the
against Kjorn for the deeds of his grandfather. Even as he thought that, Shard felt an ember warming in his heart. It didn’t feel like anger, but it made him restless. He tried to let it rest for a night. Everything I do, I do for the king and for Kjorn. The words were beginning to feel hollow in his mind. Is it really why I stayed to learn from Stigr? As the sky paled and turned golden with the sunset that would last all night, rippled now with rosy wisps of cloud, Sverin climbed to the top
Shard’s night blindness. Weary, wings aching from flying in bad conditions and no sleep, Shard angled himself starward, aiming toward the looming black lump that was Star Island. Once, he nearly dropped from the sky after falling asleep, despite the wind shoving him. Pumping his wings hard, he peered through the murky air and drifted lower. His wingtips brushed spiky pine needles and he snapped in frustration, unable to see a meadow or even the shadows of more trees. He would have to land blind
prickled with the nearness of it. Peering back, he saw Sverin closing. Shard whirled, straining to hold his position for three breaths. “I’m not your enemy! If you’d ever trusted me, my Lord, I told Kjorn—” But the king’s eagle scream cut him off and Shard snapped his wings shut to drop under the charge. Sverin’s talons, streaked with Helaku’s blood, scraped his shoulders. “Vanir traitor,” Sverin shouted, folding his wings to dive after Shard. Wind sucked the breath from Shard. He gasped,