Over, fifty years have passed. A mysterious Plague swept through Middle Jael. Walls of Darkness now surround cities around the world. Supplies are low. Prices are high. Still, humans survive. For Sciell and Miners, Lifeblood beings, the new Darkness won’t let them touch their power source without punishment.
How can they draw the power they need to survive? Their Lifeblood evolves. These beings can now see auras. Connections only existed between two beings. Now, these family bonds form between most Sciell. They can feel the other's need no matter the distance. If one is enraged, the other becomes infected with that same anger. They always have someone else in their heads. They share power.
Divine Mathews, Josephine Royal, Blea and Aliceanna Carlton's connections told them they weren't alone. The connections felt like home. These four know they're different. They can do things...see things. They don’t know why. They become trapped inside MidnightPrysn- a twisted mansion created to keep them weak. Divine, Royal, Blae and Aliceanna finally meet those they're connected to. Only, they feel like they've met before.
As Midnight Prysn's new residents regain their memories, they realize these connections aren't just a source of comfort. They can be chains.
What Dark Brings in Dark Fantasy
Dark adds the horror to fantasy. It brings a little badness to the main character. Dark makes it all right to have vicious non-humans at the center of the story. When that character is trapped in a haunted house, they don’t panic. They get annoyed. As they search for a way out, they plot a million different ways they’d torture their kidnapper. Dark makes us appreciate a character’s strength. They were teased and tortured. They never fit it. Their life, their childhood, was bleak. They aren’t bitter or mopey. They’re determined to find a place where they belong.
I came to dark fantasy from horror. I didn’t grow up devouring sword and sorcery fantasy stories. The only fantasy series I read was Harry Potter. I didn’t get into Tolkien until The Lord of the Rings movies. For years, my reading life was horror with some urban fantasy and Madeleine L'Engle added in. I fell in love with Edgar Allan Poe and HP Lovecraft. Then came Bentley Little. Oh Bentley Little. I love how he didn’t hold back. I love authors who aren’t afraid to go there. Anne Bishop turned me on to fantasy with some darkness in it.
Some struggle with their appetite for bad. Josephine Royal and Divine Mathews can see their own auras. It’s disgusting. It’s the kind of aura you get from years of being just an awful person. They hate looking at themselves. They show none of this self-loathing. They hold themselves as though they’re proud of everything they are.
In dark fantasy, dark isn’t black. It’s grey.
You get see the person behind the “monster”. Book 1 of the series, The Sciell, surrounded a race of non-human characters who eat only raw meat, yet prefer living flesh. They’re hardwired to be violent. They’re also a bullied half-human who wants to belong and her full breed brother who will walk through fire for his little sister.
In The Merging Worlds Series, Darkness has power. It’s alive. It’s not evil. It simply wants to be treated nicely. Just so happens, the people who are nice to it also want to take over the world. Darkness becomes evil in Chains of the Sciell only because its masters are evil. Even then, it can be used for good. The characters pull power from Darkness to protect those they care about.
Divine, Josephine and two other people, Aliceanna and Blae Carlton, become trapped in an evil, I mean evil, mansion. The building and those controlling this place want to break the new inhabitants. The monsters want to wear Divine, Josephine, Aliceanna and Blae’s bodies like a suit. Nothing but the bad kind of Darkness lives in that place. Chains of the Sciell isn’t just about a twisted mansion or a world in the midst of an apocalypse. It’s about characters who don’t give up no matter how bleak their situation looks. They will find a place to keep their families safe.
Auden is a dark fantasy writer. As a kid, she created her own books by folding several construction papers in half and stapling them down the middle, adding her own illustrations. No matter how hard she tried, she couldn’t get away from writing. She holds a B.A. in English, a M.S. in Library and Information Science and she studied Creative Writing in England. She is a Research Assistant for Aubey LLC and currently lives in Brooklyn, NY- working towards her Masters in Publishing at NYU. Her short stories, No Vacancy, Clipped Wings and Welcome to My World and her novellas Visible Through Darkness and Shadows under the Light are now available through Amazon. The Sciell is her first novel. Chains of the Sciell will be released June 2.