Tristal had given her his promise, but he might have to kill to keep it...
The Axeman's Path
Spring—and civilization—were bringing new life to the valley of the Heart River. But the Old Ways of Urstadge's nomads were dying.
So Tor, last of the great Shumai Axemen, took his nephew Tristal on a last run to teach the boy the Way of the Axemen.
But Tristal would have to survive deadly encounters, endure a seductive captivity, and even suffer enslavement before he learned that there was more to the Axeman's skill than just sound arm and a handy opponent.
"Stay," he shouted. "It's the axeman. He trying to divide us."
"And let them burn?" one man yelled. He turned and plunged into the darkness in the direction of the screams from the second pyre. Another man followed him.
"Stay!" the leader repeated. A yell sounded from somewhere near the first fire. "See? He's out there. He's waiting. Call in the other sentries. He's out—"
But suddenly, in a blur, Tor was in the firelight swinging his axe, downing four men in arcing swings too fast to mark. The leader jumped back, holding the dully glowing shortsword in one hand, the captive's throat in the other.
"Come closer and I'll..."