The Wizard’s Treasure
by Irene Radford
The need to hoard gold can be a curse. But what if the gold itself is the curse?
On a quest to find and return the Coronnan dragons and save the Commune of Magicians, journeymen magicians Marcus and Robb take shelter from a storm in a long abandoned monastery—only to become ghosts, trapped and invisible inside ruins no one visits, with only mounds of gold for company.
Healer Vareena has inherited the ability to care for the ghosts only she can see and hear in the old monastery. Exhausted, Vareena understands why her mother died tending the ghosts and acting as healer for a community well off the main trade routes. To save herself, she must escape her family, her village, and the ghosts.
Not all the gold in the ruins is enough to buy her freedom.
Then two more ghosts turn up.
None of them can leave. Ever. Unless the two hapless magicians can break the curse.
Book 4 of the Dragon Nimbus Histories series
“Ms Radford’s considerable gifts as a mesmerizing story-teller shine with undeniable luster.” —Romantic Times
“A rousing adventure of magic and treachery.” —Library Journal
“Plenty of popular elements: an intelligent cat, an enchanted wolf, a redheaded witch, a missing prince, the apprentice mage with misunderstood powers, and, of course, dragons.” —Locus
“A big, adventurous, satisfying climax to the trilogy by one of the more interesting new voices working with the traditional quest story.” —Science Fiction Chronicle
“This action-packed plot makes for engaged and thoughtful reading. The author manages to keep the story clear, and the characters interesting to follow. Several themes interplay successfully, with the reader caring what happens. Not surprisingly, the volume resolves one conflict, but keeps the door open for continuing obstacles. This reader, for one, is eager.” —KLIATT
Irene Radford is a founding member of Book View Café. You can find many of her books, both reprints and original titles, at the café, including her earliest books being released throughout 2023 and 2024. She has been writing stories ever since she figured out what a pencil was for. Editing, as Phyllis Irene Radford, grew out of her love of the craft of writing. History has been a part of her life from earliest childhood and led to her BA from Lewis and Clark College.
Mostly she writes fantasy and historical fantasy including the best-selling Dragon Nimbus Series and the masterwork Merlin’s Descendants series. Look for her writing new historical fantasy tales as Rachel Atwood, a different take on the Robin Hood mythology in Walk the Wild with Me, from DAW/Astra Books and the sequel Outcasts of the Wildwood. In other lifetimes she writes urban fantasy as P.R. Frost or Phyllis Ames, and space opera as C.F. Bentley. Lately she ventured into Steampunk as Julia Verne St. John.
If you wish information on the latest releases from Ms. Radford, under any of her pen names, you can subscribe to her newsletter: www.ireneradford.net. Or you can follow her on Facebook as Phyllis Irene Radford.
Read a Sample
The cult of the Gnostic Utilitarians, the Guls, bedevil Coronnan. They proclaim the ridiculous notion that hard work is the only medium of value. Magic, to them, is anathema. While they fight for power in the Council of Provinces and among the common people, the coven has gone into hiding in Hanassa where they rebuild very slowly. These rogue magicians of the eight-pointed star have patience. They have waited generations, creating alliances through blackmail, marriage, and coercion.
The numbers within the coven increase slowly. Solitary magicians prefer to remain solitary and secretive rather than join with others of their kind. They distrust everyone.
The University of Magicians still hopes that the dragons will return to Coronnan and restore magic to its honorable place in society—as if the magical energy they emit will automatically force solitary magicians to work together, under the law, with no malice, mistrust, or greed guiding them. They overestimate the honor of men who have tasted power.
And I sit in my lofty fastness, laughing at all of them. Governments rise and governments fall. This scramble for power is merely an exercise to satisfy individual greed.
Even Rovers have succumbed to the power-seeking game. Zolltarn, the current self-styled King of All Rovers, betrays his own kind as well as the coven and the Commune. After centuries of seeking nothing more than their own safety through their separateness, the Rovers have suddenly found virtue in exploring the disgusting ideas of King Darville of Coronnan. As if peace, law, and justice mean something.
Zolltarn has stolen the child who should inherit the crowns of all three of the kingdoms on this continent. This “king” of the Rovers seeks to raise the child to his own traditions, then place him on the thrones, obligated and obedient to Rover will.
I will remove myself from my protected retreat and intervene if Zolltarn succeeds. Zolltarn and a child with so much political and magical power could rob me of all that I hold dear.
Rejiia, who thinks she leads the coven, has the potential to discover my power. She has thrown herself into her perverted rituals with vigor and stamina, using her sexuality to increase the magic. But I sense her distraction from the stated purpose of the coven. She has other, more personal goals and uses the coven to gain them.
The Commune of Magicians grows stronger. I cannot stop them from this distance, but I can eat away at the trust that binds them together.
I must take pains to see that none of these players finds my power. None of them know the true source of power—magical and political. None of them shall have it. Only I. I will, and can, murder my rivals most horribly if they try to interfere with my power. I have done it before, without conscience. I shall do it again.
Men truly seek only the chaos that rules their hearts.