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Two mortals are caught in the midst of the battle between the
Titans and Olympian gods...
Their destiny began in the ancient land of Anatolia.
In 1326 BC, Crete is the last remaining sacred place for the Great Goddess, but
changes began to threaten the old gods, the Titans. Forced to become an ally
to the power hungry Olympian gods, Rhea hangs on to the secret of the star
metal, the one key that would make Zeus and the other young gods invincible.
When this secret is stolen, Rhea must find the Dactyl and the goddess who
betrayed Her before Zeus does.
Becuille is a daughter of Night, a servant of the Great Goddess created to
impart Her vengeance on mortal and immortal wrongdoers. Made mortal by
Rhea, she is sent to find the ones who betrayed the Great Goddess. In the land
of Hatti, she meets a proud and handsome prince. When love binds her to him,
her loyalties are torn.
Callileon, a prince of the Hatti, has closed off his heart to love only to
rediscover it in the arms of the mysterious and fiery slave girl he has
purchased. He is caught up in a dangerous world of power hungry gods,
jealous goddesses and potent magic, which even the Fates cannot steer him
Can two mortals fight the will of the gods?
A sly smile played at the edges of her lips. It had been easier than she thought
to help the Dactyl escape. Her powers were still strong enough to fool her
sister, but Rhea was the queen and no simple fool. Her sister would soon
discover that Celmis was missing, and it was only a matter of time before the
Great Goddess broke through her cloaking spell. A sense of urgency embraced
her. She needed to move fast.
The blue essence of the iron smelter glowed like a beaming star inside the clay
jar, radiating from the cracks of the lid. With great care, she carried the clay jar
with Celmis’s soul to the lands of the Hatti where iron working had already
begun, though they had yet to forge iron stronger than bronze.
She called on magic to cloak her and then moved like a shadow inside the
palace. Passing fierce-looking soldiers grouped together near the gate wearing
tall peaked caps, she cringed. She reminded herself why she wanted to ally
herself with the descendants of the ones who had nearly destroyed her. She
passed the soldiers and rested her gaze on more pleasing sights. Members of
the royal retinue sat in the cool shade, drinking cups of wine. Slaves scurried in
and out of the baking sun to serve their masters.
The royal apartments lay in a cluster two stories high surrounding an open
courtyard. Blooming flowers of yellow, white and purple made a colorful accent
to the courtyard and caused her to pause. The beauty of the blooming flowers
pulled at her heartstrings for a moment, bringing back memories of a happier
time. Their sweet, fragrant scent brought tears to her eyes. She passed through
a portico into a wide vestibule with a sparkling, rectangular pool and stepped
into a large main sitting room with various curtained alcoves. With the clay jar
clutched to her breast, she ascended a grand staircase to the upper floor.
Pushing aside her emotions, she entered the king’s chambers. A large box bed
covered in a canopy of sheer curtains and frescoed walls welcomed her. Tawny
lion skins softened the pebbled mosaic floors. A gentle breeze played with the
brightly colored curtains that covered the doorway to a balcony overlooking the
She waited, cloaked in shadows, until nightfall when the king and his queen
As soon as darkness fell and the palace rang with silence, she emerged from
the shadows. A round central hearth fire glowed with warmth, pulsing and
flickering across the shadowed room, performing an ancient dance along the
floors and painted walls. The king lay in his bed, the fierce warlord looking so
vulnerable as he lay sleeping without his armor or weapons. His queen slept
next to him instead of in her own quarters in a sign of her devotion. Sighing,
she tried to remember what it was like to feel love.
She crept close to his bed, staring down at his sleeping face. Even in sleep, he
looked like the mighty warlord that struck fear in his enemies' hearts. His brow
wrinkled as if he wrestled with a nightmare. Perhaps he fought a nightmare of
the battlefield, which usually struck the minds of warriors. Pressing her hand to
his hot forehead, she rid his dreams of nightmares and entered his dreams with
promises of victory and power. Removing her hand, she backed away, becoming
one with the shadows again.
The king stirred, moaning in his sleep as the nightmares returned.
His queen woke from his stirring and brushed his hair from his forehead. “My
love, would that I could remove your nightmares with a gentle stroke,” she
Watching the tender exchange with a wistful heart, she wondered what to do
with the Dactyl’s essence. Which body will I choose to hide it in?
Copyright Kelley Heckart 2012
ebook & Print
Cover art by Niki Browning