My Novel

An aspiring author, I am self taught, and still learning. I now have two fantasy novels self-published and will soon be publishing Maroz as an ebook.

If you read any of my books and enjoy them, please return to the place in which you got the book and leave a review. Every bit helps.

If You Plan on Reading One of my Books....
Please go to my Author's page Kenneth J. Ester and read "Hell in a Storm" first. I personally feel it is a better written novel than Maroz, and more likely to be enjoyed. Hell in a Storm is the first book in the Demon Siege Trilogy. Book two, "The Descent of Darkness" is now also available.

Maroz - The Novel
I appologize for any inconvenience. As a now self published author, I have decided to add Maroz to my published books list. I am presently going through the book and re-editing it, and boy did it need it. I cannot believe how far I have come since writing Maroz. However, I am confident that this will make Maroz for a much more enjoyable read and as soon as it is available for purchase, I will post it. As well as editing the story, I am also changing the names of many characters, as I did not feel the names we passable once I started reading it again.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Maroz 13 - Conviction

Ramos sat on his horse wondering how he could go on keeping away from where he saw Willim hiding. How in the world did he get in there? The only answer he could come up with was that there was another opening somewhere but he was sure if there was one they would have found it. For four days they searched the hill of stones and still the Lieutenant showed no signs of giving up. How long could Willim last in there?

The sound of a horse riding up brought Ramos out of his thoughts and he watched as the rider climbed down and walked to the Lieutenant with an envelope in his hand. Breaking the seal, Lieutenant Shaker retrieved the parchment of paper inside and read it. Reading it a second time he nodded to himself then threw it in the fire he stood near and did not walk away until it had been completely consumed.

“It appears,” the Lieutenant, said loudly, “that we have new orders. Corporal, gather the men and break camp. We have a long ride ahead of us.” It seemed he had no intentions of telling the men what the new orders were yet.

For nearly two weeks the Lieutenant pushed the patrol, allowing them rest only long enough to keep the horse from collapsing or to sleep for four hours before mounting up and riding again. Twice they were allowed to stretch their legs while men were ordered to search a town for Willim, though those searches were quickly done for another patrol was on its way to do the same thing. Ramos had the impression that they had no such orders to search any towns, but that the Lieutenant just wanted to be the one who caught him. Riding into the city of Golom they were given their first real rest and Ramos meant to take advantage of it. He had been to Golom a few times with his folks and knew of an inn where the best tasting Willowberry pie was. Taking a couple soldiers along with him they sat at tables and ordered the pie.

“It’s about time we got a break from riding.” Joni said with his mouth full. The purplish berry juice was dripping into his red beard.

“I only wish I knew what the orders were.” Ramos said.

Setting his fork down, Kline swallowed his bite of pie before speaking. “I heard the Lieutenant speaking to the Corporal.” Both, Ramos and Joni leaned forward with interest and Kline paused for more drama before continuing. “There is a town that Malok has found to be in contempt. He wants it burned down.”

“What did they do in this town?”
“What town?”

The two questions were in unison and Kline smiled as he tried to answer them both. “He blames this town for the troubles with this Willim fellow.” He said to Joni, then looking at Ramos as he answered his question. “The town of Devlin I think he called it.”

Ramos sat there in stunned silence as he soaked in the news. Devlin, his own hometown! This was not a case of punishing a village for delving into something evil or even for suspicions of treason. This was Malok getting revenge on Willim for defying him. Now here he was, not only in Malok’s army, but he was actually in the patrol that was sent to burn it down! Somehow he was sure that it was no mistake that it was his patrol that was sent but it did not matter. He could not, would not let them do it.

“Won’t let them do what?” Joni’s question snapped Ramos out of his trance. He had not realized he had spoken out loud.

“Malok doesn’t want Devlin burnt down for any crimes!” He said to the others though he still did not look up at them. All he could see was a vision of his home burning with his parents inside. “He only wants to get even with Willim and he doesn’t care how many innocent folks die for it!”

Joni’s jaw dropped open and his shock was evident on his face. “How could you know something like that Ramos?”

“Because I’m from Devlin, Willim was my best friend and Lieutenant Hostid knows that very well!” Standing up, Ramos did not even realize he had drawn his sword until the other two backed away from him, their chairs crashing loudly to the floor. “I have no fight with you two unless you stand against me. Don’t make me kill you!” Stalking out of the inn, Ramos shoved the doors open and almost ran over another young soldier before shoving him hard out of the way.

“What’s with you? Where are you in such a hurry to get to?”

“To kill the lieutenant, so stay out of my way!” As Ramos left the soldier behind brushing himself off, he could hear him ask Kline if he was serious. What surprised him the most though was when the same soldier ran in front of him and drew his own sword. “Get out of my way Raine!” Ramos did not slow down as he walked towards the other soldier.

“I can’t let you do it Ramos. You know I can’t!”

As Raine brought his sword up to point it at him, Ramos stepped quicker and swung his own with all of his might. Ramos was one of the strongest men in the patrol and Raine one of the smallest and the force of the blow nearly knocked the sword out of the weaker man’s grip. A thought crept into Ramos head that it would have been better for Raine if he had lost his sword, for maybe then he would not have to kill him. That thought died along with Raine as Ramos shoved his sword through his fellow soldier’s abdomen. “I told you to stay out of my way.” Drawing his sword out of the smaller man, Ramos did not bother to wipe the blood off of it as he pushed Raine to the side and walked on.

Turning the corner towards the patrol’s camp just south of the town, Ramos could see the Lieutenant with the Corporal and four other soldiers heading in his direction. The two officers were talking jovially until they saw Ramos walking towards them, blood still dripping from his drawn sword. The sight must have surprised them for they all stopped in their tracks before the Corporal hurried toward him.

“What is it boy? What happened?” The Corporal’s voice held real concern as he hurried to Ramos, though if Ramos knew the grizzled old officer, the concern was more for the relations with the town than for Ramos. He had probably thought Ramos had a run in with a civilian.

The Corporal’s eyes widened with shock as Ramos slid his blade under his ribs. “You will not kill my family!” Shoving the dying Corporal off of his sword, Ramos focused on the Lieutenant and shouted. “Do you here me! You will not burn my home!”

The lieutenant stood where he was, but the four soldiers moved towards him, spreading out from each other as they drew their own swords. The soldier in front of him must have expected him to hesitate when surrounded by four soldiers. It was his greatest mistake. Running forward, Ramos brought his sword around and though the soldier was quick enough to parry his strike, he did not expect Ramos to throw his weight into him. The soldier stumbled backwards several steps, his arms flailing about as he tried to catch his balance and before he could, Ramos swung his own sword again and laid the man’s chest open then kept running at the Lieutenant. With luck, nobody but the two officers knew of the orders to burn down Devlin and if they both died nobody would for months. He would have to trust his two friends not to say anything.

The lieutenant showed why he was an officer and drew his own sword before Ramos could close the short distance. He did not look surprised by Ramos reactions at all. Ramos threw his anger into his attack and though he knew the lieutenant was a much better swordsman, he did not give the officer any time to do anything but defend himself. Hearing footsteps coming up from behind him Ramos spun in a quick circle, swing his sword causing the other soldiers to jump back before continuing the attack on the lieutenant. Still he could not find an opening in the officers defense and what began as an all out onslaught to kill one man quickly turned into fighting four soldiers at once while the lieutenant backed away into safety.

Ramos could feel his muscles begin to burn with exhaustion as he continued to swing his sword from one soldier to another, not giving any one of them a chance to strike at him. One soldier, a tall thin man moved his sword to parry Ramos’s when his foot stepped on a larger rock, rolling his ankle. The man’s wince turned into a scream as Ramos ran him through, but as Ramos tried to withdraw his blade, it got twisted in the soldier’s ribcage and was yanked from his grip. Another soldier tried taking advantage of this and charged him with his sword leveled for a thrust. Stepping to the side, Ramos winced with pain as the blade slid along his left side, leaving a deep slash. Spinning on his heels, Ramos rolled around to the soldiers back and grabbed the man from behind, then pulled the soldier around as a shield. He had expected the closest solder to be slashing with his sword, which would have only lain open the soldier he now held as a shield, only to watch as the sword was thrust through his shield and into him.

The pain of the long blade sliding deep into his stomach seemed to spread out in waves. With all of his might he shoved the man he held away, drawing the blade from his stomach. Bending to pick up the dropped weapon, Ramos felt like lightning was striking him as another soldier laid open his back. Falling to his knees with the pain he watched helplessly as a short stocky soldier raised his sword ready to give the killing blow when the lieutenant shouted to stop.

“I want him alive! I want to make an example of him as to why one does not attack the officers of Malok’s army!”

Ramos still knelt there on his knees staring at the soldier in front of him. He looked on as the soldier’s face twisted in distaste at not being allowed to kill him. Then he watched as the soldier lifted a heavy booted foot to thrust the heel at his head and everything went dark.

Continue to .... Maroz 14 - Promise of Vengeance