Narine of Noe (Faerie Tales from the White Forest Book Four)
Narine of Noe should have had her whole life to train to take her father’s place as High Sage. But when a mysterious force falls from the skies, sending the world into elemental chaos and her father into mortal danger, the fate of every living creature lands on her shoulders . . . including that of the Eternal Dragon. Without the Dragon it is impossible to regain the Balance of All Things. An elaborate plan to save the world must be hatched, and Narine is forced to take charge in a world gone mad.
Before the White Forest was born, before the Great World Cry, the story that started it all. . .
Praise for Narine of Noe and the White Forest series
A charming, magical journey…
~Cassandra Rose Clarke, Author, The Assassin’s Curse series
Dinsmore weaves a coming of age story through a world that is both fantastic and believable.
I was hooked before I finished the first chapter . . . I fell in love with Narine and you will, too.
~Brenna D’Amico, actor, Disney’s Descendants
With a thud, Narine landed on the hard ground. Before she could shake off the impact, a gust of wind forced her up and away. She flipped over backward and sailed off the edge of a cliff. As she kicked out in a panic, her legs caught in a tangle of roots as she flailed past, tethering her to the cliff.
Below her, the backward river raged and fought, hissed and spit. She stashed her father’s scepter in her belt and heaved herself around to grab hold of the roots. Hand over hand, pumping her wings, she pulled her way back to the cliff.
She fluttered and climbed up and over the top of the escarpment and collapsed into the rocky earth, heart pounding. As she caught her breath, she peered over the ledge at the mad river climbing up the valley, spewing tree trunks and boulders from its tumultuous waters.
She pushed up onto her hands and knees and examined her surroundings. The precipice was empty but for a snarl of roots. She crawled forward, fighting the winds, and followed the roots until they disappeared into the unsettled ground. She lifted a chunk of torn-up earth; bits of thinner root caught in the clod.
“No,” she gasped, and the sound immediately swept away in the windstorm.
The Purview had brought her back to the Drutan’s birthplace.
She sank back onto her heels. As she sat there, even at that great height, she grew soaking wet, her wings and hair slickened with river spew. But she didn’t care; the Drutan was gone. And She couldn’t help feeling it was somehow her fault.
She looked down at Thorze’s scepter, staring into its brilliance. She couldn’t believe it had only been the night before when she and her father had witnessed the birth of the rare Drutan in the moonslight.
Now the little tree-beast was gone.
Her father was gone, too. Her father had called the Dragon.
The cold, wet wind bit into her skin and whipped at her wings. She needed to take cover in the forest. With a deep breath, she attempted to stand, but her legs buckled and she dropped to her knees. Pain shot through her kneecaps as she landed on a thick root. When she lifted the root, the leaves and dirt around it gave way, and the root led, in a taut line, into the trees. She tugged at it and felt a weight at the other end.
With a burst of hope she followed the root hand over hand into the forest. It ended in a heap of roots, rocks, and twigs. She pulled away the top layer, and through the tangle she could see the ensnared Drutan. As quickly as she dared, Narine pulled the debris away until she could reach in and grab the newling, curled up in a ball, unconscious and shivering.
The wee beast was lighter than she had expected, like lifting a plant from its pot. Narine sat back in the dirt and cradled the Drutan in her arms.
“You’re alive,” whispered Narine, wiping mud from the Drutan’s face with her tunic.
The newling’s skin was so strange, like bark, but spongy, as if it hadn’t been cooked enough. Her brown face bore circular creases around her eyes that Narine imagined would deepen as she aged. Deep grooves, indentations from the tight mesh of roots, lined her face and arms.
One by one, Narine placed a hand over each cut and a hand on her father’s scepter and visualized the cuts transformed by healing bridges of strong Drutan skin. Then she visualized the cold parts of the Drutan transformed by warm kisses of energy.
“I’m sorry you were born into this.” Narine pulled her cloak from her pack and wrapped it around them both, transforming the wet air into dry beneath it, cocooning them inside.
Author Danika Dinsmore
Danika Dinsmore is an award-winning author, performance artist, and educator. Over the past 25 years she has developed content for the page, stage, screen, and web. Danika currently works in literary and speculative fiction with an emphasis on juvenile & young adult literature. Author of children’s fantasy adventure series FAERIE TALES FROM THE WHITE FOREST, she often takes her interactive Imaginary Worlds Tour on the road, performing and teaching world-building & creative writing at schools, conferences, and festivals across North America.
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