The Crown of Stones: Magic-Scars
The story of Ian Troy continues in Magic-Scars, the second installment in C. L. Schneider’s riveting epic fantasy trilogy, The Crown of Stones.
Captured by his old enemy, King Draken of Langor, Shinree magic user Ian Troy was sentenced to prison. Tortured and drugged, robbed of his will, his memories, and his magic, Ian was made to do unspeakable things. Rescued, as his body slowly rids itself of the drug, Ian realizes he has returned to an unfamiliar world gripped with fear. In the wake of his fall, those he cared for were left to their own grim fates. Draken has seized control of the realms and named himself High King. His brutal rein has sparked a desperate rebellion that Ian now finds himself a part of. His one task: recover and repair the Crown of Stones, in hopes it will tip the balance in the revolution that is brewing. In pursuit of the reason behind the artifact’s strange loss of magic, Ian is driven to release an explosion of retribution and power that leaves him irrevocably scarred.
Struggling to reconcile the man he has become with the man he once was, Ian strives to understand the growing number of magic-scars adorning his body. He searches for the truth behind his link to the Crown of Stones and uncovers shocking secrets buried for generations beneath the sand. To become the weapon the resistance needs, he must assume responsibility for his magical inheritance. But can he curb the destructive appetite that comes with it?
The price of Ian’s magic and his addiction have never been higher.
Best Book Bit:
The wreckage seemed to go on forever. Dense bands of smoke swirled in and around the chipped, jagged blocks of stone. There was no clear path. Splintered wood and broken glass cluttered the majority of the ground. Smoldering fires covered the rest. Occasional moans and whimpering cries trickled out from beneath the fallen slabs. Bloody hands reached for me. Weak fingers grabbed my legs. I shook them all off. Someone else would tend their wounds. Or they would die. Either way, their lives didn’t concern me. The one that did was in Langor, sitting on his throne.
Finally reaching the edge of the rubble, I came out in an empty field. Behind me, the fires were spreading. Screams blew with the dust and smoke on the wind. Tall, smoldering orange-black plumes loomed high, choking out the light. Lower, a darkening haze had rolled in to hinder my vision and clog my throat. I could scarcely see ahead of me.
I stumbled on. A small building came into view, outlined against the murk. About the shape and size of a guard post, I thought I might find a horse there. Maybe some water to wash the dusty layer of gore from my skin and the sting from my eyes.
Hopeful, I headed toward the structure. Men ran past me through the cloud. They were dressed in uniforms, so my theory of a guard post was looking sound.
I was almost there. I could see the road. But my footprints were made of blood now and my lungs were burning with the hot, acrid air.
My head throbbed like it would split. I was suddenly so tired.
I only meant to slow down, but my legs gave out. And in that brief instant, in the time it took for me to fall to the ground, it happened.