Learn more about the Journey Saga and Self-Publishing

About Journey through Darkness

Azende, a Tamrin commander seeks out the Medjays, his tribe’s last hope against the Aksumite occupation. But instead he finds Joval and her small clan of exiled mercenaries. Together they must build an army capable of destroying their enemies, the Pharaoh of Kemet and the Emperor of Aksum… 

Joval, the last General of the Medjays wants vengeance for her fallen clan. But ancient soul stealing concubus will stop at nothing to keep her from her destiny… 

Tefenon, the Crown Prince of Kemet never understood why he was called the Child of Ra since birth even though he was born into a kingdom that only worships Set, the storm-god of chaos.  He is about to find out… 

This is their saga….

The Official Site of Kandake E. Brockington

www.journeysaga.com

 

 Chapter 1

THE TAMRIN

Azende did not know if he could keep his promise to his people.

Only days ago he and his younger cousin Saiyasha had left their tribe

in search of allies from Kush. With the Aksumites pushing their army

into the Northwest, the Tamrin had fled to the Desert Sea Hills to avoid

conflict. Azende had promised the war council that he would return

with an army of Medjays to fight their common enemies. But with only

an elephant, two sacks of supplies, and his javelin, Azende wondered if

he and Saiyasha would survive long enough to reach Kush.

Most of the Medjay Nation was slaughtered at the beginning of the

Aksumite occupation, but Azende was determined to find them. If the

Medjays had not survived then what hope of survival did the Tamrin

have?

The old matriarch beneath them took lumbering steps in the darkness.

The elephant was tired and so was Azende. He fought the fatigue and

forced himself to remain alert. Traveling through these grasslands could

be dangerous at night with so many nocturnal predators on the prowl.

Saiyasha’s grip around Azende’s waist tightened. “I really hope we

find these Medjays,” she yawned sleepily. “If we have to ally with the

Anizoba . . .”

Azende stared ahead. The moonlight cast an eerie glow across the

sparsely scattered baobab trees. “We will find them, or we will at least find

out what happened to them,” he reassured his cousin. An alliance with

their enemies the Anizoba should have been a last resort but the Tamrin

were desperate. The Tamrin were a peaceful and artistic people, but

the Anizoba were war-like. Unfortunately, the Tamrin needed Anizoba

warriors to protect their women and children from Aksumite warlords.

The Medjays were mercenaries, enforcers, and assassins but at least

they could be trusted.

“Kush is so far away,” Saiyasha gently rested her chin against Azende’s

back. “If the kingdom is under Shikhari’s rule then he will have legions

everywhere, right? How will we get around them?”

“Let me worry about that when the time comes. Rest for now,

Saiyasha.” Azende was concerned about his cousin’s mental state. Days

ago Shikhari’s army had destroyed the Simarna colony but had left

Saiyasha’s brother Jarib as the last survivor. Saiyasha had mercifully killed

him to spare him further suffering. She was still quite shaken up over it.

Azende needed Saiyasha mentally and physically prepared for the long

journey ahead of them.

Saiyasha closed her eyes and tried to relax. Azende took a swig from

his waterskin, wiped his mouth, and then froze. His ears twitched to a

faint sound in the distance. The elephant had heard it too. She blared

anxiously. Azende roughly patted her large head. “Be calm,” he coaxed

her gently.

A low, guttural howl echoed throughout the grasslands.

Saiyasha’s eyes snapped open. Sardonic laughter and loud barking

noises forced her upright in the saddle. She’d heard those sounds at the

Simarna colony right before she’d found the dead.

“Azende,” Saiyasha whispered loudly against his back. “What is

that?”

Suddenly three sets of red eyes flickered in the darkness like glowing

torches. Mournful wails sent shivers down Saiyasha’s spine.

Azende had already untied his wooden javelin from the harness. He

recognized the sounds too. They had become increasingly familiar since

the Aksumites had raided the neighboring territories.

“Hyenas,” Azende said in response to Saiyasha’s question. “Get your

weapons together.”

Saiyasha held her breath as the elephant’s screech filled the air. The

animal stopped so abruptly that she would have lost her balance had it

not been for Azende’s tight grip on the saddle. She reached down for

a large knife attached to her belt and for a smaller one in her sandal

strap.

The hyenas laughed condescendingly at the elephant as if sensing

its fear. The slobbering beasts closed in tighter. As the elephant shuffled

nervously beneath them, Azende lifted his javelin and struck the closest

hyena nipping at the elephant’s heels.

The hyena shrieked as the rest of the clan drew in closer. Saiyasha

threw one knife and missed. The second knife hit her target in the throat.

There was more howling and moaning. The elephant jerked upward.

“Hold on!” Azende shifted his weight forward and grabbed the side

of the saddle, but Saiyasha hadn’t moved fast enough. She slid off the

elephant and toppled to the ground.

Saiyasha got up quickly. The last hyena bared its teeth and stalked

her at an angle. She realized she had nothing to defend herself with.

The rest of her knife collection was strapped to the elephant.

“Azende! Help!”

 

As soon as Azende slid off the panicked elephant it stampeded away

with everything they owned. He didn’t have time to worry about that. He

retrieved his javelin from the belly of a fallen hyena before charging the

one in front of Saiyasha. The animal darted to the side. Saiyasha used

the distraction to move safely out of the way.

Azende crouched into a fighting stance. When the hyena darted

forward, Azende tossed the javelin with all of his strength. The force of

the weapon slashing through flesh made Saiyasha grimace with disgust.

The hyena fell to the ground howling. Azende retrieved his weapon and

then stabbed the animal again.

Saiyasha reclaimed both of her blades and cleaned them with the fur

of the dead hyenas. Their elephant was long gone. They had no food,

clothes, water, or transportation. At least the elephant served as some

security. Now they were completely helpless out in the open.

“We keep moving,” Azende looked up at the sky noticing it was no

longer as dark as it had been earlier. “We’ll rest after the sun rises. We

don’t want to catch anymore predators.”

Azende wiped his hands off on his loincloth and retrieved his javelin

from the hyena carcass to check out the condition of the shaft. Together

they briskly walked through the long grass in silence as not to attract

more nocturnal hunters. The bumpy grasslands were filled with uneven

terrain. Saiyasha tripped a couple of times and was relieved when dawn

arrived. Sunrise brought welcoming light and golden warmth. Soon they

would be able to rest.

Azende contemplated the future. He knew that the fate of the Tamrin

rested in his hands or Shikhari’s. His people had already lost hope, but

he was determined to revitalize their tribe. It was his personal mission to

bring down the Aksumite Empire and to avenge the small nations that

had fallen under its rule.

After several hours of travel they stopped beneath the shade of an

acacia tree at the closest water hole. They refilled waterskins and washed

off their bodies and garments. Two gazelles suddenly reared backwards

on their skinny hind legs, twitched their noses, and then leapt away from

the waterhole. An albino antelope as large as a rhino had startled them.

The creature dipped its head into the waterhole right next to

Saiyasha and Azende. They gawked at it in amazement. The creature

completely ignored the Tamrin and continued lapping up water. Azende

slowly reached for his javelin lying in the dirt near his feet. His mouth

watered hungrily. This antelope was so plump and healthy it would feed

them for weeks. He would have to find some herbs to preserve it and dry

out the meat under the sun . . .

Azende eagerly lifted his javelin. The thrill of the hunt filled his

veins with anticipation. Still the antelope continued to drink and watch.

Azende’s mouth curled into a smile. He would have this beast. He silently

thanked the ancestors for sending such beautiful prey in his direction.

With knees bent and back arched he crept through the grass, his

reflection shimmering across the water. The white antelope watched and

waited. When Azende lifted his javelin in preparation of a strike, the

antelope finally lifted its head and fixed its lavender gaze on him.

What strange colored eyes that creature had!

Azende’s knuckles popped against the wood of his weapon as his

hand tightened over the base. When he threw the javelin he heard it

whistle against the wind and strike . . . air? The javelin ran through the

mirage of a white antelope and landed in the mud sticking straight up.

The image of the antelope blinked and flickered before vanishing.

Azende groaned. He really was tired and hungry. The animal had

only been a figment of his imagination. He stood upright for a stretch

before returning to where Saiyasha waited. By the expression on her face

he could tell she’d seen it. The white antelope had moved and smelled

real enough.

With growling stomachs Azende and Saiyasha carried their waterskins

back to the old acacia tree. They sank into the grass to rest and sulk.

Azende’s long calloused hands massaged the thin hair around his

temples. Trekking through the grasslands would be impossible without

food. At nightfall Azende planned to do some real hunting.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s