Today we are honored to be hosting Richard Blunt on his virtual book tour this month with the 3rd installment of his 3- day Get to Know My Book series of book excerpts. Get to Know My Book is an ongoing feature between blogs where we post excerpts of an author’s book so that you can get to know the book better, one blog at a time.
About Richard Blunt
Richard Blunt is the author of the fantasy novel, Lucas Trent: Guardian in Magic. He is currently working on his second book in the Lucas Trent series. You can visit his website at www.lucastrent.com.
About Lucas Trent: Guardian in Magic
“Guardian in Magic” is a fantasy novel located in a world very similar to the one we live in. It tells the story of 16 year old Lucas Trent, an IT student living in Luton, England. His fascination for the supernatural leads him to take a glimpse at the world from an angle only few others look at. An angle that teaches him the true meaning of friendship, loyalty and trust in ways he had never experienced before.
Journeying through a secret community that is hidden in plain sight, he suddenly finds himself forced into living two lives at once, keeping his true identity even from his close family. In a struggle to handle this situation, he gets pulled deeper and deeper into a swamp of conspiracies and coincidences surrounding a young girl and the very truth about magic in the real world…
He approached the meeting point in the northern suburbs of Luton half an hour later. He had expected to be nervous by that time–after all, the upcoming task was huge–but he just wasn’t. He felt calm, powerful and somehow on top of the world. He didn’t look forward to the confrontation at hand, but he knew it had to be done.
“Hi Guardian. Ready for action?” Marcus asked him as he stepped off his bike. He and Cedric were already waiting.
“Hi Cougar. Hi Whirlwind. As ready as I will ever be, I suppose. What about you?”
“We didn’t start it, but we are going to end it.” Cedric quoted him from yesterday.
“Yeah, they want hell? We can deliver that,” Marcus said with a grim look on his face.
“Let’s hope it won’t get that far,” Lucas said calmly.
Stephanie was next to arrive. She had her hair tied up in a knot and was wearing jeans and a jeans jacket, which in combination gave her a very strict look. She looked very calm as she approached.
“Hello Airmid. Nice appearance,” Lucas greeted her.
“Hi boys. It seemed more fitting for the day,” she said with a calm, nearly cold voice.
“Jesus, Airmid,” Marcus laughed. “You sound like you are about to kill someone.”
“I hope I don’t have to.” Her voice hadn’t changed. “But I am ready for whatever comes up.”
Lucas was impressed. What had happened to the friendly little girl she normally was? She seemed to be so extremely focused that right now nothing else mattered.
Darien and Jasmin approached together last. After they had stepped off their bikes, Lucas took a look at his watch.
“There is not much time left. You all know the plan?”
They all nodded.
“You all have your cell phones?”
They all nodded again.
“Great, then. After you get hold of Jameson, you give us a green light, Psycho. As soon as we see the last of them enter the church, we will let you know. We meet again outside the church.”
They all nodded once again.
“Are you ready for this?” The question was rhetorical; he could see that in their faces. But still he wanted to ask.
“Yeah,” they all responded with one voice.
“Then let’s do this.” He nodded and approached Marcus. Putting his hand on Marcus’ shoulder he said, “Brother to brother, yours to the end.”
They had not done this in public for a while now, but right here, right now, it seemed the right thing to do. The others quickly followed Lucas’ example in making their final step of swearing in for what would come next.
When they were finally finished and standing there in a circle Lucas looked from one to the other. They all looked confident, they all wanted to go on. So finally he nodded slightly.
“Let’s rock ‘n roll,” he said and grabbed his bike.
Marcus and Jasmin headed off to the road Laurence Jameson would most likely use; the others headed for the forest behind the church. To avoid being seen, they took a long detour, leading them directly to the side of the woods. After 30 minutes of struggling with their bikes in the dense forest, they finally reached their destination, a nice place near the edge of the forest line where they could see perfectly, but would almost certainly remain undetectable themselves.
Lucas scanned the area thoroughly. The church was more like a big chapel, standing there in the middle of open ground. It looked old and abandoned, some windows broken, some tiles missing in the roof, but still it was an impressive sight. The cemetery on the far side emphasized the age of this building even more. Most of the surrounding wall had broken down or was overgrown with ivy. The great iron gate leading into it had rusted and was broken out of its hinges. A few meters away from the side entrance, on the side facing them, was the playground. Some swings, a slide and some old, rotten wood structures, were surrounded by a low wooden fence with entrances on each side. It made a strange picture, a church and a playground, all alone in the wild. Some overgrown stone walkways were the only indication that there had once been a greater plan for this area.
Lucas scanned the surroundings carefully, as well. Two dirt roads led up to this place. The church was standing in the middle of an opening about hundred meters in diameter. Farther out there were fields on the east, nothing but fields up to the horizon. The north and west were covered in dense forests, some dirt paths leading into them, but they seemed to be very scarcely used. The forest to the north, where Lucas was sitting right now, was growing on the slope of a little hill. To the south, more fields came into view. With a few roofs being visible on the horizon, this was the only direction where you could anticipate civilization being around.
Down next to the dirt road Lucas could already see two cars and some bikes. The start of the meeting was only 15 minutes out and most of them seemed to be there already. It all looked so quiet, so endlessly peaceful.
“When we get down there we should see if the cars are unlocked. Maybe we’ll find their computers in there,” Lucas said to Cedric.
“Will do.” He nodded.
“I will join you if you don’t mind,” Darien said and Cedric nodded shortly in his direction.
Right at that moment a text message arrived at Lucas’ cell phone. It was Marcus, confirming that Jasmin had managed to get hold of Jameson and that he was now on his way to the church on his motorbike.
“Seems your trick with the carburetor helped, Professor.” Lucas smiled and showed the text around.
Darien smiled back at him.
A few moments later the lonely motorcycle rider came into view.
“There he is,” Lucas said, pointing towards him.
“Do you think he will be the last?” Stephanie asked.
“Don’t know. But they won’t be finished within ten minutes anyway, so we better wait a while, just to be sure.”
Laurence had stepped up the main entrance, and after waiting a little while for someone to open, he entered the church and vanished from view.
“Two cars, three bikes, one motorbike,” Darien counted.
“So we are most likely to deal with five small ones plus Wolfman.” Lucas nodded.
“Unless there was more than one in the car,” Stephanie added.
“Or unless someone else appears.” Cedric pointed toward the horizon, where someone riding a bike had come into view.
“Ok, that makes seven then. With one of them being on our side, it seems we are even.” Lucas was not too happy about the amount of people that would be there, but he couldn’t help it anyway.
“Unless there was more than one in the car,” Stephanie repeated.
“We will see soon, Airmid.” Lucas tried to calm her down, although there was no need for that; she still seemed perfectly calm. Lucas was starting to wonder how she was doing that.
“It’s already five minutes past four. Shall we get started?” Darien asked.
“Yeah, let’s call in the others. They have a little ride to take anyway.” Lucas nodded.
He quickly started typing a text message to Marcus, telling him to get going.
“This is getting a bit crowded for my money,” Cedric suddenly said and pointed toward a car that was driving toward them.
“Do you think we should call it off?” Lucas asked.
“Don’t be ridiculous,” he shook his head with a smile.
The car had stopped next to the others and a man had stepped out. He was wearing black robes with a wide silvery lace and a silver pentagram on the back.
“Is that Wolfman?” Darien asked.
“Don’t think so. At least it’s not his usual robe if it is.” Lucas shook his head.
“What’s he doing?” Stephanie was asking.
The others looked down. The man had not gone through the main entrance; he had headed to the cemetery and was entering the church from the back.
“Perhaps it was Wolfman after all.” Lucas shrugged. He had just sent the message to Jasmin and Marcus.
Five minutes passed before Cedric pointed his finger to the road again. “Look, there are even more people approaching.”
“I think those are friendlies this time, Whirlwind. Let’s get down there.” Lucas smiled. He had recognized his two buddies on the road. “Let’s put on our robes.”
They quickly pulled out their respective clothing before they started to head down to meet the other two.
Jasmin and Marcus had reached the church first and taken cover behind one of the cars. When they saw the others approaching they also put on their robes, pulling the hoods deeply over their faces.
Lucas headed for the playground, leaning his bike against the fence so it wouldn’t be seen from within the church. Then he took cover behind one of the old structures, a little kid’s house. The others followed his example, Jasmin and Marcus heading over to them, too.
“All right, let’s start,” Lucas said when they all had assembled around him. “Cells to silent; I don’t want a call to give away our position.”
The others nodded, switching off their phones.
“Whirlwind, Professor, you head for the cars. See what you can find, bring everything you can over here.”
They nodded and headed off.
“Cougar, can you please do a quick sweep around the church and see how many more exits there are?”
Marcus was gone immediately, without even nodding.
“Psycho, can you please try to get a look inside? It would be nice to get a headcount.”
“Sure thing,” she said, nodding.
“What do we do?” Stephanie asked.
“We wait and watch. If one of them needs assistance we have to be ready.”