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The Demon and the Witch

Book One of the Saga of the Witch

A tale of myth and magic

Ragnarok was over a thousand years ago but the world is still a harsh place of monsters, warriors and witches.

Anike is an apprentice herbalist whose ambition is to become a master and set up a shop in her home town. 


When her father falls ill, she must seek a cure. On that search, she is plunged into a very different life and must take a dangerous journey to find out more about witchcraft. 


Anike has to contend with betrayal, monsters, fear and prejudice before she can confront the consequences of her own power.

Published 1st March 2024 by Witchlore Publishing

Available for free on Kindle Unlimited

 

 

 

"An exciting coming-of-age fantasy" - Zelda C. Thorne



The Demon and the Witch

Chapter One - Frost in Summer

Anike froze in the act of picking a berry as the hairs on the back of her neck rose. She very slowly turned her head while her hand inched towards her dagger. A wolf nearly the size of a pony was standing in the centre of the sunlit clearing not ten paces away, its yellow eyes fixed on her and teeth bared. 
She had not realised that any dire wolves still lived in the forest. She saw at once that her knife would be of little use against the beast and released her grip on it. Steadying her breathing, she weighed her options. If she ran, it would be on her in seconds, and picking up and hurling the bag containing the herbs she had gathered that morning would not be more than a slight distraction. Her best hope was that the creature was not really hungry, not hunting but had come upon her by accident. Even larger predators and the smaller monsters tended to avoid humans unless they were desperate, or if they sensed a threat or easy prey. Appearing to be either would get her killed.
Beads of sweat formed on the young woman’s brow. Standing as still as she could, trying not to betray fear in her breathing or stance, she sought the balance between fear and aggression. She kept her eyes on the dire wolf, trying not to imagine how the teeth would feel closing on her flesh.
The creature regarded her from the centre of the clearing, sunlight glinting from its silver-grey fur. Behind it, another dire wolf, then a third, emerged silently from the dark green trees. Anike’s heart skipped a beat as they came to stand beside the first and largest wolf, which stared at her before turning its head to look back the way it had come. It gave a low growl, then its head came forward and it bounded across the clearing. Anike tensed but it was not attacking. The great beast loped past her and disappeared amongst the dark trees. The other two pack members followed their leader, also casting glances over their shoulders. Anike realised they were not hunting but fleeing. She shivered as she wondered what could have frightened three dire wolves.  .....

 

 

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