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A to Z Challenge 2019: S is for Suzhaul

Welcome to my A to Z Challenge 2019 posts. This year I’ll be writing about the world of Kinyal which is the setting of my epic fantasy novels and short stories. These posts offer insights into the world’s history, locations, and factions, but do not spoil any of the events or secrets from the novel.

You don’t need to read them in order, and as the challenge progresses, I’ll do my best to add links to related topics for each post.

The untouchable loner

Suzhaul is one of the most interesting among yalari, second maybe only to the Four who formed an unusual alliance in order to win the worship of a whole kingdom.

He’s one of the most powerful of his kind, but contrary to other yalari of similar position, he rarely engages in power struggles that seem to be the life goal of most of his equals. Others tend to leave him alone, because even though Suzhaul is not known for his intrigues, any attack on him or his domain is met with a fierce response. While most yalari are satisfied enough with defending or pushing their opponent away, Suzhaul does not settle for half-measures and once engaged, he doesn’t stop until his opponent is obliterated.

The secretive scholar

Yet, despite his power and mercilessness, Suzhaul is one of the few yalari who tries to understand magic indigenous to his world, and it’s been said that in the past he aided human scholars who also pursued such knowledge. A few surviving chronicles from the times of Zemarion suggest he also associated with mage killers, though the details of such dealings remain unclear since they weren’t arcanists.

Nowadays, he seems to be withdrawn from the matters of both worlds, and whatever studies he pursues, seem to occupy his mind entirely. Perhaps this has something to do with gossip of powerful tribal warriors immune to magic and carrying the same double-bladed spears which legendary mage killers used to carry. Or, perhaps, this is because once in the past, Suzhaul was known to remain in contact with Veranesh, the yalari who destroyed half of Tyorane. If a concept of a “friend” existed in yalari’s language, the two could have been considered such, and even though no one knows what goals exactly brought them together, some human scholars worry Suzhaul might be brewing a revenge for what happened during the Cataclysm.

Others adamantly remind them that Suzhaul had always been a loner with little care for both human and yalari matters save the situations that affected his own pursuits, so maybe its best to leave that powerful demon alone.

If you’d like a taste of the world, my free collection contains two of the stories from my free short story collection are set in Kinyal. The Arcanist and the Mage Killer and Scourges, Spells, and Serenades tell of the early adventures of Kamira and Veelk, the main protagonists of the upcoming novel.

You can get the collection by signing up to my newsletter.

All posts in this year’s challenge (links updated with new posts):

Arcane Magic || Barriers and Circles || The Cataclysm || Devanshari  || Essence || Free City of Kaighal || Gildya Magna || High Magic || Imbued Stones || Juamha || Kamira Altrainne || Languages || Mage Killers || Nightflies & Other Creatures || Origins of the Idea || Politics || Qinyalarethe || Religion || Suzhaul ||

Joanna Maciejewska

Joanna Maciejewska is a fantasy and science fiction author who enjoys all things SFF: books, movies, and video games. Her short stories appeared in magazines and anthologies in Polish and in English. Her epic fantasy adventure series, starting with By the Pact, is available in ebook and paperback at all major retailers.

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