For this Magick Monday I thought I would share a scene from “Zikhin” Book One of the Tome Series featuring an important character, the enchantress Riya! Enjoy 🙂


In the middle of her tent, Riya fought to ignore the sounds of battle as she fell deep within herself.  Standing with her arms down at her sides, her head bowed, she focused the power of her emotions to channel the pure energy of her soul, the innate talent of the Paantha.  Fear threatened to detract her and she struggled all the harder to build her growing pool of zakti, soul energy, containing it until it was ready to be unleashed.

“Come on out, your majesty!”

The flap to the tent tore open and an Elf walked in.  Narendra sank the blade of his knife into the vulnerable flesh where the slender thug‘s neck met his collarbone, dropping him to the floor dead.  Another came in behind him before he could register his friend’s plight and Narayan stabbed him in the side, piercing his lung.

Feeling the power rise within her, Riya opened her eyes as a pale white glow began to rise from her skin.  Her soul was so close to the surface it poured from the whites of her eyes in trailing light.  Releasing her force, a sudden gust of wind from inside blew the tent apart, exposing her and her attendants and filling the clearing with tempest currents of air.  Caught by surprise, the remaining Acacians paused in a mixture of awe and fright.

The two Elves still on horseback turned to fire their bows and she snapped her hand in their direction.  Four knives formed of pure white essence shot from her fingertips, their blades sharper than any found in the Material Realm.  Each pair caught a bandit in the throat, knocking them from their saddles while the remaining human and Yupanqui fell to their knees in the middle of the blood soaked field.

The enchantment, the queen’s most powerful emotion masked within her cold, sterile aura of death, compelled them against their will, influencing their minds.  Zakti streamed from her hands like the rushing River of Stars above, magnetic to those observing beyond its reach.

Narendra watched as the enchantment became an amriya, a curse.  His bloodstained knife in one hand, his other took the silver disk hanging from the tether around his neck, a waning moon amulet, in a shaking grasp.

“Dark Mother protect us,” he whispered.

The amriya grew stronger as Riya assaulted the villains’ minds, gaining influence through the human’s fear and the Yupanqui’s forced reliance on his other senses.  Both reluctantly drew their swords and to the shock of even she who controlled the curse, threw themselves upon them.  With a horrified scream, she abruptly let go of her power.  The white glow extinguished from her skin and eyes.  The wind vanished and an eerie calm descended.

Blood soaked the grass.  The remnants of tents and extinguished fires were strewn across the field.  Bodies lay scattered everywhere and except for the Paantha, suspicious gazes turned to the young woman shivering violently at the center of it all.  Cold sweat chilled her to the bone in the warm night.  Her black hair matted to her head.  Her arms limp at her sides.


~ Excerpt from “Zikhin” Book One of the Tome Series copyright AJ Culpepper 2011
~ Image courtesy of



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