The Wizard’s Heir by Devri Walls
Tybolt’s a Deviant, a hated race immune to direct magic in a world where Wizards ensure survival. But when he loses his entire family to a spell-made storm he joins an elite group of Wizard hunters, organized beneath the new non-magic wielding king.
Now eighteen, he spends his days capturing Wizards. But the nights are his, reserved to feed the starving villagers of Eriroc under cover of dark. There’s always more people in need than he can help, and one of these days he’s going to hang for theft from the royal kitchens.
Although Tybolt and his fierce partner, Auriela, have imprisoned many Wizards, the one partially responsible for the storm that killed Tybolt’s family is still out there: Alistair. When an old informant claims to have information regarding their elusive prey, everything changes.
In a cruel twist, Tybolt realizes he isn’t who he thought he was at all. How can he save himself, the people, and those he loves while keeping his secrets safe? Can he hide his true nature and allow the corrupt king to remain on the throne?
Or will he have to unveil himself and risk possible execution to save them all?
Devri Walls lives in Meridian ID, with her husband, two kids and the cutest mutt you’ve ever seen. After suffering from an abundance of creativity with not enough places to put it, she turned to writing. Which in the end, turned out to be exactly where she should have been putting it all along.
Q&A With The Author:
1. What is the thing you struggle with the most while writing? And how do you defeat it?
Self-confidence. I feel like a fraud most of the time. I don’t think it will ever truly be defeated, I’ve just had to learn to ignore it and work anyway. Messages from readers help a ton, and so do those moments when I read a passage I just edited and it rocks! I walk away going, Devri, you got this! At least for today.
2. What kind of music do you listen to while you write?
I bounce around a lot depending on my mood. If I am ready to go, creativity flowing, I listen to my “fun” playlist. Ella Henderson, Fall Out Boy, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and many more. If I’m struggling a little more its instrumental, 2 Cellos, Piano Guys and Lindsay Stirling, to name a few. If I’m stressed or anxious that day I will choose more classical pieces, Beethoven, Bach, Handel. Etc.
Tybolt stepped out of the castle’s main gates and into the square. It was packed with people wearing the finest clothes they owned. For many that meant their rags had been cleaned.
Tybolt stopped at his favorite sweet bread cart. “Two, Darcia.”
Darcia’s collar bones jutted out from beneath her dress, and the hollows of her cheeks were pronounced. Although her children were some of the best fed in the village, raised on unsold sweet rolls, their mother looked like the rest of the villagers.
“Skipping breakfast at the palace again, Lord Tybolt?” Darcia pulled two steaming rolls from a large brown basket.
“The palace?” Tybolt scoffed and handed over his coin, plus a little extra. “If the castle cooks could make a sweet roll half as good as yours, they would never get me out of the kitchen.”
Darcia blushed and suppressed a nervous giggle, tucking the coin away.
Tybolt glanced through the crowd to see a little boy ducking behind Pete’s cart, the only fat man in the entire village, and begin digging through his garbage. Tybolt inwardly cringed. “I’m going to need another one of those rolls,” he told Darcia, fishing another coin from his pocket as he kept an eye on the boy. He took the sweet roll from her and darted through the crowd. He slipped behind the cart and grabbed the little boy’s wrist.
The boy looked up, startled. All eyes in his gaunt face.
Tybolt put his mouth next to the boy’s ear. “Pete doesn’t take kindly to thieves, even from his trash.”
The little boy panicked and jerked back, knocking over a crate of turnips in his haste.
Pete turned to find them both crouched between bins of vegetables. His portly cheeks and neck grew red at the sight.
Tybolt stood and pulled the boy up by his bone-thin wrist. “Pete!” He grinned and casually took a bite from his sweet roll. “I was just trying to pick a few of your finest vegetables with the help of my young friend here. It appears we’ve made a mess.”
Pete’s face began to return to its normal color, but his eyes narrowed suspiciously. “Lord Tybolt, you know I only keep my most expensive produce behind the stall.”
“I do, I do.” Tybolt handed the second roll over to the boy, who snatched it as if it might disappear at any moment. He ravenously shoved it in his mouth. “Surely you noticed Lady Auriella and I with our catch yesterday.”
Pete broke into a grin and leaned back to tuck in his shirt—and part of his oversized belly—into his pants. “I heard the commotion but didn’t realize who the lucky Hunters were. What can I get for you?”
“Surprise me,” Tybolt said, flipping him a gold coin. “A bag full of your best.”
Pete took a burlap sack and began shoving in fruits and vegetables. “Taking some food out to your family, then?”
“Of course,” Tybolt said, shouldering his sack. “One can’t be too generous with family. Happy festival.”
“Happy festival to you.” Pete pocketed the gold with a satisfied gleam in his eye.
Tybolt steered the boy out of the main square and into one of the tiny alleys between the tightly packed homes. He knelt and looked him over. The child was in worse condition than he’d originally thought—skin and bones. His eyes were too big for his face, and his shirt hung on him like it would on a scarecrow.
“Blue-eyed Hunter,” the boy whispered. His eyes grew even wider.
“Listen, if you’re going to rummage through garbage, you must steer clear of Pete. He’s sent men to prison for less, and he’ll have no mercy on boys. Do you understand?”
The boy nodded.
“Who do you belong to, anyway?”
The boy looked away and shrugged. “Ma died last week. I haven’t seen Pa in two days.”
“What’s your Pa’s name?”
Anger flared inside Tybolt. “Here.” He held out the sack of food. “Take this straight home. Don’t show it to anyone. Shove it in a cupboard or under the bed, and make it last as long as you can.” He paused. “Your Pa will be home tonight, I promise.”