“I am Conrad Tuloe.” The man dismounted and bowed. “I am the ambassador from the kingdom of Salot. It is a fair day for traveling, where do you head?”
“Yes,” Thomas answered. “It is at that. We were thinking of taking it easy walking. We head to the sea.”
Thomas turned back to the man and thought the face of this man seemed honest, with its broad nose and high cheekbones.
“Me lord,” the necromancer said. “I’m very sure you did not ride that horse windless to come and exchange ‘Good Days’ with me.”
“Very well.” The ambassador nodded. “Let us walk for a bit. I have a matter to discuss.”
They started walking again, the reins of the animal in the man’s hand.
“You know of the peaceful nation I come from?” “Yes, me lord, I’ve heard of it,” Thomas replied. “Please, call me Conrad. We are far from court.”
“Very well, Conrad.”
“You know my country is a beautiful place,” Conrad said. “We are very peaceful and proud of the fact that we do not even have an army.” The man looked at Thomas intently. “We have not fought a war in many generations.”
“Yes,” Thomas said. “You’re a country of artists and poets.”
“You are right for the most part. Your name is Thomas, right? May I call you
“Well then, Thomas,” Conrad went on. “You know of the Serpent Kings in the south? You know they are a very cruel people? They enslave other nations, other peoples. They sacrifice these people to their snake gods.”
“Yes I’ve read of these things, too, Conrad,” Thomas answered, growing sullen at a question he knew was coming.
“I have spent the last fortnight in the company of your king, Thomas.” Conrad paused. “The Serpent Kings are marching north. They mean to enslave my people.”
“Why are you telling me this?”
“The king will not aid us, and we need help.”
“How can I help you?” Thomas shook his head. “I have no kingdom to send troops from. Surely, there are other rulers you can ask.”
“No, there are none,” Brandon stated. “No other rulers wish to involve themselves against the Serpent Kings.”
“Well, I’m sorry.”
Conrad took Thomas’s arm to turn him. “I know what you are, necromancer! I know the powers you command.”
“What do you want me to do? I’ll raise no army for you. The last king I did that for turned out to be selfish and greedy. He cared nothing for people, only power. I lost a great deal in that kingdom, I lost my innocence.” Thomas pulled his arm free of the ambassador’s grip. “So you defeat the Serpent Kings, what next? Your king will have an army of risen at his command. Perhaps he will decide to take other lands, other people. What I create are abominations, I will do that no more. You don’t know what you ask!”
The ambassador looked away. “We will fight ourselves then. I will put swords in the hands of teachers. I will put spears in the hands of painters. We will arm the singers and dancers and we will die! The great libraries where nations send the young to learn will be no more.” He paused and looked back at Thomas. “Come and see what we will die for, come with me to Salat.”
In silence, Christina had walked beside him for the length of the conversation, but now spoke up. “Let’s go, Thomas. Let’s at least see this place before it falls into the hands of the south.”
Thomas looked at her sideways. Her insistence in not understanding what he did with his knowledge beginning to irritate him. She would try to talk him into doing what he now considered an evil. He would go, but he would create no army
Title: The Continuing Journeys of a Different Necromancer
Author: James J. Crofoot
Thomas now views his magic as less than good, but he must raise one more army. This one not of his creation though. For the first time he learns fear of the undead. More than ever, he longs to see the waters of the great sea to the west. Will he find peace there? Will Christina and he find a home with the people of the shores? Maybe. But, maybe he’ll have to fight magic darker than his own to keep his new home.
Maybe he’ll have to fight magic so dark that even a half demon witch fears it and must help.
Author Bio James J has travelled on sea and land, managing to get two degrees and has attended Gotham Writing Workshop. Through it all writing remained his first love. Now he is publishing his work for your enjoyment. ‘The Continuing Journeys of a Different Necromancer’ is the sequel to ‘The Journeys of a Different Necromancer’, both available at MuseItUp publishing, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Smashswords. He has also appeared in Silverblade Magazine. For notice of further publications, you can find him at www.crofootwrites.com
Links MuseItUp Publishing