The Cult Of Spear (The Empress of Hell Series, Book 1)
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Two hundred years ago there was a terrible Infernal Empress who ruled with an iron fist over almost all the continents of the world. Although she was killed and peace was restored, however, there is a terrible cult that intends to bring her back to life. Lariel, a young half-elf warrior who only wanted to live in peace with her father, finds herself in the middle of a terrible conspiracy when her genitor is murdered by the Cult of the Spear. After being saved by the wizard Eric, in addition to seeking revenge, she must prevent the terrible Demon Queen from making her glorious return.
It was a moonless night.
Away from the hut where she and her father lived, Lariel wiped the sweat from her face as she lowered her axe into yet another tree. She was not looking for firewood, but training. Her muscles tensed as she struck the massive trunk, causing a huge gash in the wood.
The dark-skinned half-elf with pitch-black hair around her growled in frustration. She still wasn't good enough.
Still frowning, the nineteen-year-old turned and walked briskly back to the house.
The nice little wooden house was far away from the city for obvious reasons: her father was one of the last remaining pureblood elves in the world. Most humans, dwarves and various mixtures of other races did not exactly feel at ease around him, or treated him as if he were a deity. This made the old man very angry.
Upon opening the door, the first thing his father says is:
"You need a bath."
And indeed she did. Sweat dripped down her mahogany-colored skin, and the smell she exuded was not particularly pleasant.
"Right now," she replies, going directly to the bathroom.
As she undresses, she hears the elderly elf - and wrinkled, which certainly denoted his extremely advanced age - preparing dinner. Every week, the girl went to the village nearby and bought a good amount of food and spices. As a half-elf, she could still enter places without receiving inappropriate looks.
I wonder if her mother was bothered by the stares she received when walking with her husband. She always asked herself that question when she walked among the citizens.
As she comes out of the shower and sits down at the table, the long white haired man comes up to her with a bowl of stew and meat. The girl thanks him with a gesture and begins to eat quickly, making quite a bit of noise.
"Honestly. You have the looks of your mother, but the savagery of a tiger."
"Your wildness, Dad."
"I don't know what you're talking about. I'm just a quiet old man who likes to live peacefully in the woods."
Lariel rolls her eyes as she continues eating. Her father joins her and soon they both go into a deep silence as they devour their meal.
As she licks the juice off her fingers and then immediately gets up to wash the dishes, the girl hears yet another scolding:
"Did you manage to perfect your cross stroke on that tree?"
The half-elf replies, grumpily.
"You know I won't be here forever, right? I wonder if I'll be alive to see you land that blow?"
"Such drama!" She starts running the sponge over the plate and then over the spoon. "You know I'm going to make it. And you're not on the verge of death, so stop talking like a dying man."
The gray-haired old man with the pointed ears, more pointed than hers, gives a sad laugh.
"What do you know about death, girl?"
Lariel hates it when he starts talking in that tone. She uses all the assertiveness she has, trying hard not to sound rude:
"I know you are far from dead, sir, and that you will get to see me hit that blow. Not just that one, but many others."
"And just for the record, I got pretty close this time. Just a little further, I can feel it."
She stops washing the dishes and glares at him.
"You could at least pretend you have some faith in me."
"Faith is very beautiful, Lariel, but it is the force that builds a life. In my day, we all had goals to achieve, paths to walk. Your generation is very weak. And also..."
The young woman just threw the dishes in the bottom of the sink as she dried her hands on her own clothes.
"This is getting unbearable, you know," she shouts.
He doesn't even flinch as he turns to her, crossing his arms.
"Are you really? I wouldn't be upset if I knew it wasn't true. Prove to me that you're strong, and I'll leave you alone."
"I am stronger than you!"
"You have got to be kidding, my child."
"No, I'm not. I train every day and every night, go into town for supplies, food, and do everything YOU don't have the guts to do. If you want to insult me because I can't hit the damn thing, you could show me what you are capable of. You're just an old man!"
She had completely crossed the line.
The light-skinned elf and his father's slanted, gray eyes, the only trait they had in common, flashed with anger.
He stands up quickly, almost without cringing due to his back. For an instant, she thinks she's going to catch it. It wouldn't be the first time she deserved it, though. He could take one more beating.
Instead, he lifts his chin solemnly and looks at the axe beside the door. Not her axe, but his.
"You want me to prove what I'm capable of?"
She does not answer.
The old man takes slightly faltering steps to the weapon, holding it out immediately afterwards.
"Then come with me and swallow your words, girl."
He doesn't wait for her before he opens the front door and starts walking toward the trees.
Lariel only hears a subtle buzzing and a deafening thud before running to ascertain what is happening.
His father lies dying on the ground, struggling not to scream. A pool of blood covers his shoulder, splashing on his clothes and also on the ground, the axe is lying. Buried deep, the arrow that hit him has a long, black handle.
As she approaches him, she hears another buzzing sound. It's an attack!
The half-elf does her best to drag her father's heavy body into the house, but she is not fast enough. An arrow grazes her belly, making her scream.
Hooded men are coming from all directions, running in coordination. Her keen eyesight allows her to distinguish their weapons: the archers are farther away, while those carrying knives, swords, and axes make up the front line.
As fast as she can, she locks the door and leans on it, pushing hard so they can't get in.
"Father! Hold on tight."
The man is still lying on the floor, gasping and with one hand holding his wound.
The door gives way.
The men enter all at once. Their faces are covered by black masks depicting demons.
"Take the old man and kill the girl," their leader orders.
One of them comes at her with a sharp dagger, ready to kill her.
In a maddening burst of force, her father stands up and pushes the assailant away. The two begin to fight, but it is obvious that the hooded man is much stronger and more agile.
And Lariel can do nothing, absolutely nothing, when the stranger's blade pierces her father's belly, splashing blood everywhere.
Lariel's scream is loud, hoarse, and filled with pain and despair. She doesn't even care about the other men around, nor if they will finish her off right there; the half-elf simply runs to her father's body.
"Father! Father!!!" She screams and shouts, shaking his collapsed body.
He does not react.
Tears blur the girl's vision, and tremors take over her limbs as she shakes her head negatively, refusing to accept the idea that her father is gone.
The leader of the hooded men, the one who gave the order to take him away, punches the man who killed the elf in the stomach.
"You idiot! We wanted him alive! What's gotten into you?!"
"M-me sorry sir, I... I got nervous, he attacked me..."
"Your foolishness cost us everything! You really are an idiot!"
The girl's eyes widen as she sees the leader pointing at her:
"The only one who should
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