A Prequel to the Adirondack Spirit Series
Banished by one tribe. Condemned by another. Will an outcast’s supernatural strengths be enough to keep him alive?
549 AD. Raised by monks, Conchobar is committed to a life of obedience and peace. But when his fishing vessel is blown off-course, the young man’s relief over surviving the sea’s storms is swamped by the terrors of harsh new shores. And after capture by violent natives puts him at death’s door, he’s stunned when he develops strange telepathic abilities.
Learning his new family’s language through the mind of his mentor, Conchobar soon falls for the war chief’s ferocious daughter. But when she trains him to follow in her path as a fighter, he’s horrified when his uncanny misfortune twists reality, causing more disastrous deaths and making him a pariah.
Can Conchobar defeat the darkness painting his steps with blood?
I call this scene “A Super Freaky Night.” This is written in the first person, so the “I” refers to Conchobar, who is having a difficult time sleeping in a longhouse in close proximity to other people, in sharp contrast to his raising. For context, Spits Teeth is war chief, and Conchobar’s adopted father. Black Rat Snake is Conchobar’s adopted brother.
When Spits Teeth falls asleep, it feels like the longhouse is shaking from the noise he makes. It isn’t just Spits Teeth’s snoring that keeps me awake. It seems like the sound of snoring surrounds me. It should be possible to fall asleep with my fingers pressing my ears closed, but I haven’t been able to manage it so far.
A smoldering anger builds within me. I try to push away thoughts about Spits Teeth shouting at me. I’m not accustomed to being admonished. I repeatedly replay his harsh words in my head. “Is there anything you are good at, boy?” It’s hard to fall asleep when you’re angry.
Then I start to hear chattering. Instead of trying not to hear, now I’m trying to make sense of the change around me. The snoring has stopped. Is it a quiet conversation between two members of the family? I listen intently.
One after another, I hear the various family members talking in their sleep, only I can’t understand a word that anyone is saying. One mumbles. Another grunts in response. It is like they are having a conversation.
The bunks shudder and the walls shake. I want to get away as fast as I can. Unfortunately, I have to carefully crawl across Black Rat Snake’s sleeping body to descend from the elevated bunk. Despite shaking in fear, I’m able to cross my brother’s body without waking him. As I reach the ground, the sounds grow louder. I feel an urgency to get away, yet I have lost control over my body. It is like a nightmare from which I cannot wake.
Previously the strange sleep talking consisted of muted mumblings. It has now elevated to a feverish pitch. They yell and scream at each other, even the ones who normally cower in fear. I stand in the aisle near the hearth fire, and I can see the sleeping family, on both sides of the aisle. I can’t understand how they can sleep through whatever is happening. My head aches, and I feel dizzy.
I wonder if it is them or if it is me. Then I wake up. I recognize that I’ve had a bad dream, yet I’m not completely sure it was all in my imagination.
Thank you, David Fitz-Gerald and The Coffee Pot Book Club
About the Author
David Fitz-Gerald writes fiction that is grounded in history and soars with the spirits. Dave enjoys getting lost in the settings he imagines and spending time with the characters he creates. Writing historical fiction is like making paintings of the past. He loves to weave fact and fiction together, stirring in action, adventure, romance, and a heavy dose of the supernatural with the hope of transporting the reader to another time and place. He is an Adirondack 46-er, which means he has hiked all of the highest peaks in New York State, so it should not be surprising when Dave attempts to glorify hikers as swashbuckling superheroes in his writing.
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/David-Fitz-Gerald/e/B076CJK284/
Universal Link: https://books2read.com/thecurseofconchobar
Amazon CA: https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B08TPDKN1Q
The Curse of Conchobar is available for free in exchange for signing up for David’s email list via BookFunnel: https://dl.bookfunnel.com/iwczowhp8q