What is there in life, if not an endless wrestling against an unconquerable foe?
Freedom doesn’t bring the peace the nation of Maraiah hoped for.
Giants, soldiers, and nomads fill the promised homeland—and they’ll do anything to hold onto power.
Thrown into an unfamiliar landscape and constant danger, Maraiah struggles to maintain her identity.
It’s a time of faith. Aia raises up Stewards to stand between His people and death. He works great miracles through them, reshaping the very ground of the promised land.
It’s a time of disappointment. Home looks nothing like Maraiah had dreamed. Generations drag on, and still violence, confusion, and doubt abound.
Will a Steward ever truly establish peace?
These seven short stories take place between Child of the Kaites and The Steward’s Apprentice, providing snapshots of key figures whose struggles with pride, trust, courage, and identity shape Maraiah’s future.
Life as an Aimarine chieftain is never secure, but therein lies the glory. When Catam-Chieftain receives word that new enemies are approaching his chiefdom, he welcomes the fight. Any victory is honorable, but Catam suspects this will be one of his great triumphs. Catam prepares to thwart this new nation that has been spreading chaos around the peninsula. He has to: it’s the only thing that can secure his supremacy in the eyes of Orrock, the other chieftains, and, most importantly, his younger brother Mairon. Catam swears to the gods: he shall vanquish Maraiah.
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The Temple Builders
In the decade since Tiran received a Sword of Champions, he feels like he’s figured out what it means to be Swordbearer. He travels around the peninsula for most of the year settling disputes among Maraians and protecting them from the violent nations surrounding them. Usually Nihal, the other Swordbearer, travels with him.
A mission to defend a city from the giant Aimarines starts exactly as Tiran would expect, but then he finds himself facing a new kind of opposition. This opposition could take everything from him: his confidence in Aia’s will, his life, and worst of all his calling. With all certainty gone, Tiran must decide who he is and discover what it truly means to be a Steward.
Irellia the Night Walker
About a century after the events in Child of the Kaites, Irellia the Night Walker was born blind—in other words, cursed, according to her people.
With enemies approaching and her sister about to give birth, Irellia must confront her deepest shame in order to find the help her people desperately need.
Jennoevre the Glowing
All his life, Lewka has been fighting to keep Jennoevre alive and her faith strong. He will do anything for his sister, even if it means losing his soul.
Whatever it takes, Lewka can do it: Sell himself into slavery, becoming a fugitive, stealing, lying—and worse.
He has to protect her. No one else will. Especially not some distant Creator who never spared two Coarnomite orphans a thought.
If Jennoevre ever knew, all of Lewka’s striving would only push her away. He must never tell his sister the truth.
Head down. Don’t draw attention. Survive until the Steward comes.
Eilamir’s life was thrown upside down when the giant Aimarines conquered his city. Forty years later, deliverance has still not come.
Hope is running thin when Eilamir loses the little freedom he has left. Now a slave, what chance does he have at a future? Will he survive long enough to see freedom?
Or maybe he has to make his own salvation.
Failure. Unfaithful. Mess-up sister of the Steward.
The town reviles her for one mistake. Gaia is willing to do anything to prove that she is just as good as anyone else, if not better.
Even if that means dedicating herself to the service of one of Xendroq’s gods.
If she can prove to the world that she is enough, maybe she’ll find a way to believe it herself.
Duecatoh is strong. He’s confident that his life holds great things.
But then he is saddled with an arranged marriage to the weakest girl in town. Meanwhile, his best friend is chosen for the most confident girl in the city.
As Duecatoh’s foolish decisions threaten to destroy the people around him, a stronger threat to Maraiah arises in the west. Duecatoh must recognize the difference between true strength and weakness in order to save his marriage and his people.