People always underestimate one another, especially when it comes to outsiders or people who are different from them. I grew up feeling that way because I was different from most people I knew. I liked comic books, cartoons and sci-fi/fantasy movies while others thought those things childish and nonsense.
I think that’s why I made Lord Bryan MoonDrake, the Gil-Gamesh, an outsider with a lot to prove in Forever Avalon and The Dark Tides. Though most of Avalon looks up to him as a hero and a champion, others scorn him as an Outlander and unworthy of wielding the Twin Swords of the Dragon Moon.
Here is an excerpt from The Dark Tides where the Gil-Gamesh’s power is tested by such an individual, but he proves himself once again as the champion of Avalon.
Anger filled his eyes as he looked down the street toward his attacker. Th e lone figure stood in the middle of the road, his face shrouded by a flowing black robe. In his hand, pointed at the Gil-Gamesh, was his wand, still pulsing with magical energy. Th e wand was a twisted branch of wormwood with a dark moonstone embedded at its base.
“I don’t know who you are, but you must have a death wish to attack me here in my own home,” Bryan swore.
“The only one who will be dying here today is you and your pathetic Outlander family Gil-Gamesh,” the attacker grumbled, his voice low and guttural. “Th e Cult of Darkholm will seal your fate once and for all.”
Th e Cult of Darkholm came to rise aft er the Gil-Gamesh killed Lord Kraven Darkholm in a wager by battle … A duel to the death. The death of Lord Darkholm meant the end of the line of Morgana le Fay. Th e cult believed that they must kill the Gil-Gamesh in order to restore balance to Avalon.
“How many more of you fanatics do I have to kill to end this idiocy?”
“You cannot kill us all Gil-Gamesh … Death cannot kill that which never dies!”
“Never say never zealot!” the Gil-Gamesh shouted as he leapt at his attacker, swinging Twilight down toward the cultist’s head. But before his sword strikes, he cried “Incandesco!” causing Twilight to burst with bright light. With the attacker temporarily blinded, Hunter and Nevan drew
their GunStars and fired a volley at the attacker. The spell shots erupted as a single fiery projectile that split into many fiery projectiles.
Th e cultist waved his wand and chanted “Caligo Obscurus Cimmerii”—an incantation Bryan had never heard before. Tendrils of darkness fl owed out of the wand like an octopus attacking its prey. It reached out to form a protective shield in front of the cultist, swatting at the meteor swarm to dissipate as it impacted on the barrier.
Th e Gil-Gamesh couldn’t believe his eyes. He’d seen spells that blocked magical attacks or deflected them, but never cancel them out like that. He knew he had to take a different tack against this madman. He sheathed his swords and motioned for Hunter and Nevan to back off . The cultist expected the Gil-Gamesh to attack him, swords swinging like a whirlwind, as he is known. He tried a different tack against the champion of Avalon.
“What’s the matter Gil-Gamesh? Are you afraid to use your vaunted swords against me? Th ey are the only reason you have any power on Avalon. Without them, you are nothing,” he taunted.
“You know, I’ve been here for more than 18 years …” Bryan lamented as he removed his gloves, tossing them to as he untied his cloak, letting it fall off his shoulders. “… One would think you idiots would take the time to do your homework.”
“Acheron Draconis!” he commanded. His body erupted with magical energy as it flowed around him until it takes the form of a dragon that acted as an extension of him. Th e people of Emmyr stared in awe of the Gil-Gamesh, but especially Ashley and Andrew. She had seen her father
do some amazing things before, but nothing like this. Th e cultist quivered slightly as fear raced through his body. He wondered if he made a mistake in taunting the Gil-Gamesh, but he
“I am Lord Bryan MoonDrake, Gil-Gamesh of Avalon, 17th DragonMage of the Wizard’s Council,” Bryan announced as he cupped his hands in front of him, drawing power from ground and focusing it through the dragon stone that hung around his neck. His eyes pulsated with magical energy in an unnatural glow. “You are sadly mistaken to think that I am powerless without my swords; but that is a mistake I will gladly help you resolve!”
“Aboleo evi Itum!” Bryan chanted as he released the energy through his dragon-form at the cultist. With a wave of his wand, the cultist reformed his dark energy shield but the blast hit with such a force, it pushed the cultist back. He grasped his wand with both hands, trying to hold off the Gil-Gamesh. He looked up into the sky and stared at the crescent moon, as if he were calling to it for help. The blast slowly began to break down the dark energy barrier.
Bryan knew he had to press his advantage. He reached out with his right hand to toward a lit torchiere hanging next to one of the vendor’s stalls. “Draconis Infernus!” he cast, drawing the fire to him and adding it to his energy blast, igniting his dragon-form into a fire-breathing dragon. The explosion shattered the dark shield, igniting the cultist’s robes on fire. He dropped down to one knee, his garments burnt away, leaving nothing but a charred husk.