Betrayed and sentenced to death, Kinner dreams of rescue by Weathercock,a mythic hero it's said will one day change the world. What he gets instead is Rai and Banya, rag-tag soldiers on the lam. The last thing they need is to play nursemaid to a half-grown whelp, but when a madwoman's secret binds their fates, it will change their lives forever...if it doesn't kill them first.
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Weathercock. The name evokes flames and chaos, and a mythic hero who will one day change the world. Young Kinner - betrayed by those he loves and sentenced to die - knows only one thing: in a world where women hold all the power and men are nothing but property, heroes are hard to come by.
Determined to find a life on his own terms, he flees execution only to discover he knows nothing about survival. Used to relying on others, he dreams of rescue. Instead of the Weathercock, what he gets is Rai and Bayna, mercenary soldiers on the run from the determined (and increasingly psychotic) Commander Remeg.
The last thing they need is to play nursemaid to a half-grown whelp, but a madwoman's dark secret soon ties their fates. For a while, things actually go their way until further treachery casts a dark wing over the travelers. Alone once more, Kinner must discover within the bravery and skill to save not only himself, but also his friends.
And what of Weathercock? Can someone who doesn't even exist appear when Kinner needs him most?
Remeg drove her mount toward Rai as another blazing arrow split the sky.
The barn roof went up with a hungry whoosh! The doors sprang open and a torrent of panicked horses boiled out, splitting like a river to either side of the fray and disappearing across the grassland.
A vision appeared in the gaping doorway.
The grey horse, made hazy with drifting smoke, stood firm and resolute in the face of combat. The thick neck bunched as the animal tucked its chin close to its chest and danced its feet in the battle dressage of the Carraid. The rider, cloaked and cowled, swung the bright nimbus of a blade into the air as a voice rang out, not in the thin high tones of an adolescent boy, but in the clear tenor of a man.