White Light Red Fire – Robert Reid
The power of the red fire is strong,
but the White Light is greater still.
“The story is bright, visual and vivacious… If you’re looking for another world to occupy the gap left by the Seven Kingdoms of Game of Thrones I can’t recommend a better place to visit than the island of Andore. White Light Red Fire is a heady, consuming and inspiring blend of history, fantasy and folklore and is homage to the dedication and inspired storytelling of Robert Reid.”Amazon Customer
“The skies were filled with an unreal fire; blue, burnt with amber, red, orange and yellow. This fire was no natural thing. It clawed across the sky, and below it all life shivered and retreated. The land lay scorched, the mountains and glens trembling.
The man stood pale in the false light, a statue, watching. Then he moved, shaking off the stillness, and looking towards the power that shook the world. His clenched fist opened and clean white light leapt to the sky. A huge concussion rocked the mountains. All light was quenched. The sky turned black, then clear and blue. A distant rainbow promised that all was well and God still cared for this lost land.
Alastair Munro fell back, the soft heather a safety net, all power gone, all anger lost. Angus Ferguson was beside him as ever, a reassuring voice, a reminder of why Munro was there, why he must go on, why this was his destiny.”
White Light Red Fire was partly inspired by Braveheart, a late 13th century Scottish warrior, and by the story of Robert the Bruce who led the Scots to victory over a large English army in 1314.
On the island of Andore, an old alchemist knows how to harness the hidden power of a red stone to create weapons of terrible destruction.
In the Second Age the stone, Othium, had fuelled brutal conquest, energised the industrialisation of the world and powered great craft to ravage the planets.
Now in the Third Age the alchemist returns to fulfil his ambition – world domination.
The red fire of othium is again unleashed in wars of conquest;
can the aggressor and the alchemist be stopped?
“A powerful narrative weaves its way through a background of vividly portrayed landscapes, military strategies and realistic battle scenes.”
Dewar the Second was clearly the son of his father. He was taller than all the other men around him, with a mane of red hair and a temper that mirrored its colour. Dewar was used to the privileges of power. A violent warrior, he thought little of executing any who opposed him. His was a reign of fear, although those who had grown rich under his and his father’s time on the Ackar throne were loyal. He did not like being called from his private quarters, so now was not the time to cross the greatest power on the island of Andore.
So it was that the two met, the King dressed as only wealth and power can, and the traveller in his simple black hooded cloak.
“You’d better have good reason to make me break my rest, old man,” said King Dewar.
“My Lord King, my name is Oien, and I come to you to seek an alliance. Together we can create a power to rule the entire world.”
The King’s laugh rolled off the rafters. “I am all powerful in Andore, old man, yet you believe you can offer me more?” The next laugh had a dangerous edge. “Perhaps you will be allowed to polish my sword for me before I take your head off with it.”
Again the old eyes glowed, the hand opened, and the red fire flashed to the ceiling in a blinding blaze before being instantly quenched again in the old man’s clenched fist.
“Great King, I care little for your power or your sword,” hissed Oien contemptuously. “Both are as nothing under the fire. But our ways are linked. If you decide against it then it is of little consequence to me, but your power can help me.”
Silence reigned in the Great Hall, and all the men held their breath; their Lord was never challenged. Once more the big man laughed, but this time there was a note of uncertainty in his voice. “So I can help you, but what do you offer in return?” he said.
“The chance to rule all of mankind.”
“And who is it that asks me to form this unlikely alliance? With whom shall I rule all of mankind? Who are you, old man?”
“My name is Oien, and I am from times now lost. My power is the old power that once held sway in all the world and all the worlds beyond. That power is the gift I offer to you for our alliance.”
The Dewar paused, then crossed the floor and took the old man’s shoulder. “Leave us,” he commanded his men. In moments they were alone.
“Tell me more, Oien. Who are you, and from whom – or from where – comes this… this power of yours?”
Oien sat down and took off the black cloak. Beneath it his robes were amber like burning embers, and his hair was silver like the moon.
“I am of the olden times, King Dewar, a remnant of a long-forgotten past. In the Second Age all the world was ruled by the Five – all the world and the planets beyond. You remember the stories, perhaps? The Council of Five held all things in their control until the meteorite rains from the skies took them all away. The Five were the masters, but not Gods, and God decided to act to recover His lost world. Of the Five, one was most powerful, and I am he. In the Council of Five I ruled, because I alone understood the nature of the power and how to control it. Everything of that Second Age was fuelled by that power – the red power of othium. King Dewar, it is othium from the province of Banora in Bala that will once again allow us to rule all the lands.”
The Dewar was silent. The ghosts of the past were stalking the great halls of Boretar.
At length he spoke. “So, the days of magic return. And all the power can be mine… ours. But why do you need me?”
“Othium is now rare. It is found almost nowhere except in the province of Banora in the land of Bala. The old mines will still lie there under the wild mountains and hillsides of the Inger Mountains. In the old days they were called Am Mondah Ruadh, The Red Mountains. We must own the lands of Bala, and then we can rebuild the glories of the olden days. To take these lands needs an army. You have looked south to build your kingdom, but I need you now to turn your armies north. It is in Bala that real power lies.”
“A clever mix of the historical and fantasy in the classic battle of good vs evil. A fast paced, lightly camouflaged story of Celtic ingenuity and moral values fighting the oppression of the evil sassenach empire… with a little help from the heavens! A really good read.”
About the Author
Robert (Bob) Reid grew up in Scotland’s beautiful border country where Hawick was home until it was time to go to university. Bob gained a degree and a PhD in Chemistry from Edinburgh University, and it was while in Edinburgh that he met and married Phyllis. Work opportunities took them south, where their son Simon was born in Cheshire, and their daughter Charis some years later in Swindon. Highworth, near Swindon, became home in 1982. It remains home and has become a special place to Bob and Phyllis.
Bob’s career of forty years was initially in technical management, then general management and business consulting, with work generally taking priority over creativity. It was during a work break in 2002 that the germ of the idea for this story was first triggered. Bob had always had an interest in Robert the Bruce and Scotland’s wars of independence, which partly inspired this novel. However, work again took priority and with no time to concentrate on the book, song writing filled the creative space (see www.bob-reid.co.uk).
Semi-retirement in early 2018 created the time, and family and friends the encouragement, to complete this book.