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Liz Patrona never expected to lose her normal life completely. She never expected that people’s memories of her would vanish or that all records of her existence would disappear. She never expected to be stolen away to a city beneath the desert. And she definitely didn’t expect to be told she was the God-chosen barrier between the common man and paranormal threats.
Liz is a teenager perfectly happy with her mediocrity, that is, before she’s taken by a peculiar group of people and forced into a role she never imagined, – and definitely doesn’t want. Distinguishing illusions from reality, realizing her abilities as a pyrokinetic, and keeping otherworldly objects from the hands of normal folk are only some of the things that await her. Prepared for this by her new mentor, a rude, possibly sadistic, but oddly attracting man, Liz braces herself for what is to come. But many an unknown thing lurks here, and what she doesn’t know may just kill her.
Six months after her otherworldly experience beneath the sands of Egypt, Liz Patrona is just getting by in the normal world, seemingly abandoned by those she called friends. Without warning they come beating at her door, calling her to immediate action. Her adversary Jakeus has traveled to the mountains of an uncharted European land, back to a delicate point in time. Therein lies Rosamund, a thriving Guard civilization where Liz’s people are very much alive. Not only do Guards and Epilektoi abound, but the malevolent Loki as well, biding their time as they plan a foul revenge. At the top of their hierarchy stands Jakeus. Liz takes on Rosamund’s protection as her personal duty, enduring everything from abduction, public execution, and betrayal by those she trusts most to protect it. As the clock ticks down, she discovers the one person the Loki are convinced will lead them in their quest for Rosamund’s destruction…
Death overshadows everyone at some point, but for Liz Patrona that time comes far too soon. Word comes that Wily, her ruthless enemy, survived being thrown into the Black River and crossed into Geminus to usurp the kingdom’s throne. Now his sights rest firmly on her world. Knowing Liz is the only threat in his path, he curses her to die in one year’s time—unless she can kill him before the clock runs out. In the months she has left, she must travel into Geminus, forge precarious alliances with those who’ve survived Wily’s reign, and battle for her very survival. Yet what lies in Geminus may be more than she bargained for. In these foreign lands looms a sinister secret about her own past. Something that has been guiding her from her first breaths to her final steps.
In the long-awaited conclusion to the No Angels trilogy, Liz is pushed one last time to discover the bounds of how far she’s willing to go to protect those she loves—even if it means losing herself along the way.
Where Gold is Born – A brief piece of speculative fiction that considers the emptiness, fulfillment, and destination of the soul. Published in The Sagebrush Review vol. 9.