The Heir of the First Tower
The First Tower Trilogy Book 1 by Nicholas P. Adams Genre: Epic Fantasy
Set in Pirth’Vee Grah, a world where one stays on top of the food chain by flying higher than the creatures that would eat your wings as an appetizer, the technologically superior Ch’Hota and warmongering V’Jeeta clash over a precious resource while the altruistic Pra’Acheen takes neither side.
Forced to choose between the freedom to pursue a cure to White Claw, and his loyalty to father and flock, V’Jeeta High Prince—and budding alchemist—R'Venin must sacrifice more than he ever conjured before he can show his feathers in the Granite Spires again. And, after a lifetime hiding among the branches, Ka’Ala Ka’Ua—the last known survivor of the mythical Gir’Agit—is saved from solitude after she’s blown into the nest of strangers from the Bluewoods. The Windfather has her course laid out, but does she possess the faith to follow?
Can R'venin bring an end to the war and peace to the flocks? Can Ka'Ala trust the hearts of someone whose ancestors enslaved her own?
Only The Heir of the First Tower can answer these questions and more.
“This book will help you to escape the mundane world for a while, but it can do more than that. It can teach you the importance of love and the joys of serving others. It can do this all in the background while the story entertains you with its complex societies and a range of emotions to keep you reading.”
--John M. Olsen, 2020-2021 President of the League of Utah Writers
Slender columns rose around the chambers’ periphery, separating the central atria from a belt of ten alcoves along the circumference. Nine of the cavities, two wingspans wide and five tall, featured a different statue dedicated to a Granite Spires' clan leader. K’Marot leaned against a column demarking the First Tower alcove, arms crossed. He nodded as R’Venin’s eyes met his, the scars across his face distorted by shadows. Behind him, K’Marot’s guard surrounded the monument featuring a warrior with wings spread wide, carrying a spiked mace in each hand. K’Marot bore a striking resemblance to the statue. How many generations of my father’s line have ruled the Spires?
In every other alcove, seated around each effigy, an entourage wearing the clan’s markings talked behind their hands as they watched and listened to the leaders. Frescoes and bas-relief sculptures covered every surface detailing each faction’s history back to the rise of P’Phet as the first seer of Pirth’Vee Grah. One lie after another, if you believe the Ch'Hota and Pra'Acheen.
The tenth chamber lacked any embellishments, every surface pockmarked, with only the fractured base of a long-forgotten statue remained. Much like the spot on which I stand.
R’Venin looked down at his feet while the shouting continued. Polished marble spread to the walls from the worn-down remnants of a pillar, the girth of his chest, on which he stood a feather’s width off the floor.
On either side of him, a circle of elevated perches, each varying in height and topped with a padded throne, rose above his head. K’Rawin, directly across the ring, sat atop the tallest pillar at ten wings above the floor, a gilded mace resting across his lap. On K’Rawin’s right, the patriarch of the second tower sat one wing depth lower. On the king’s left, the third tower’s leader sat two wings below. The pattern continued back and forth until R’Venin’s position.
The commotion grew like towering waterfalls after a monsoon until the king raised his mace. Hisses filled the room then quickly died, leaving only the sound of fluttering sunshades overhead.
“Continue,” K’Rawin said, pointing his scepter at R’Venin.
“Thank you, Father.” R’Venin cleared his throat. “Every season, we fight over the Crimson Maize. Why?”
Nervous laughter erupted as V’Jeeta glared at each other, some shrugging or shaking their heads. Yes, it’s an obvious question, but one that needs scrutiny.
Gu’Usa, the leader of the Second Tower, leaned forward. “For the silk.”
R’Venin pointed at him, locking eyes. “Right. We fight to get the most silk. But why the silk? Why not the grain from which the silk grows?”
Gu’Usa held out his arms, looking around. “Everyone in the Spires knows this. This is pointless.”
“It has medicinal properties.” Sha’Atir of the Eighth Tower broke in. “Why do you ask such an obvious question?”
R’Venin ignored Sha’Atir’s inquiry. “How do we use the silk in our alchemy?” he pressed.
Murmurs grew from all around. Various answers rose above the din.
“Closing scars faster.”
“Strengthening feeble wings.”
“Opening our minds to dreams.”
“Yes, yes.” R’Venin waved his hands for quiet. “But what is the primary use for the silk in the spires?”
“To increase our numbers,” K’Rawin said. “To replenish our ranks season after season, to rebuild our armies after each harvest from the devastation brought upon us by Ch'Hota filth. To overcome the effects of the White Claw, reducing our seed.”
Angry roars erupted, filling the room with threats of battle and vows of victory. Warriors pounded fists and swords on their chest plates, spears against shields. R’Venin scanned the crowd, waiting for the sentiment to dissipate.
K’Rawin raised his royal mace again, hushing the rally.
“Do you know how the Ch’Hota and Pra’Acheen use the silk?”
“We don’t care how those mongrels use it!” An unseen warrior shouted from the gallery. The war cries built up to a roar until K’Rawin stood, his eyes scanning the crowd.
“Do not interrupt my son again.” He growled. Sitting down, he laid the scepter across his lap and nodded to R’Venin.
R’Venin gave a quick nod in return. “They use the silk for all the same purposes as we do, with one exception. They don’t use it to increase their seed. They’re not affected by White Claw like we are, not nearly to the same degree. And it doesn’t affect them until further into their late seasons.”
Low grumbling churned like a rock slide.
“What are you proposing?” Pra’Kop of the Fifth Tower said, standing and gesturing around the room. “That we live like the Ch’Hota? That we embrace their traditions? That we give up on the only means we have to ensure our survival?”
“No. No.” R’Venin took a breath. “And, yes.”
I grew up in the small, rural town of Boring, OR with my six brothers and sisters.
After graduating from High School in Gresham, OR, I attended BYU-ID and received my Associate's Degree in Pre-Med. After that, I returned to Portland, OR, and attended Portland State University, where I earned my Bachelor's Degree in Biology/Pre-Med before changing my career track to Architecture.
I completed my second Bachelor's Degree in Architecture at Portland State University before achieving my Master of Architecture Degree from the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, UT.
After graduation, my wife and I moved to Phoenix, Arizona, where we adopted four children over the next eight years.
I currently live in the Salt Lake City area, where I am an Associate Member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the League of Utah Writers.
My other interests include movies, singing, and motorcycles