The Forsaken Throne (Kingfountain #6)

The Forsaken Throne (Kingfountain #6)

Jeff Wheeler


Ceredigion: Andrew and Genevieve (House of Argentine): The army of Kingfountain was nearly defeated at the Battle of the Kings, but a tenuous peace has been established. Gahalatine, the Overking of Chandigarl, swore fealty to Drew as his sovereign lord and pledged to help rebuild the devastation inflicted by his people. This peace was forged through a marriage alliance between Gahalatine and Trynne Kiskaddon sealed at the sanctuary of Our Lady following the battle. The vast treasure ships were unloaded of their precious cargo, and Gahalatine’s men began rebuilding and educating the people in Chandigarli customs.

Chandigarl: Gahalatine (House of Dainik): Gahalatine is still the Emperor of the East Kingdoms, the vast territory he conquered through his ambition and Fountain-blessed ability to lead. He has succeeded in maintaining control of the empire’s formidable military, but the Wizrs of his realm lead the bureaucratic government of the empire through the Mandaryn. Gahalatine’s long-term power struggle with the Wizrs has shifted since the death of their leader, Rucrius, whom Trynne slayed in the fountain of the poisoner school in Pisan. His land’s traditions prohibit him and Trynne from consummating their marriage until Trynne turns eighteen or until one of her two parents can be found to grant permission for the match.

Averanche, Brythonica, and Westmarch: Tryneowy (House of Kiskaddon): Trynne is now the most powerful ruler in Kingfountain next to the king and queen. As her parents are both missing and her younger brother was killed in a carriage accident, she controls the sizable domains of both her parents as well as the city she holds in her own right. It is now publicly known that she is the Painted Knight, King Drew’s champion and protector. Trynne is also responsible for the training of the Oath Maidens, an army of female soldiers that played a pivotal role in defending the king during the Battle of the Kings. Although her marriage to Gahalatine is political in nature, she is grateful their alliance has brought an end to the bloody conflict between the empires. She is now preparing to visit him in his domain and be hailed as the Empress of the East Kingdoms.

North Cumbria: Fallon (House of Llewellyn): Fallon would have lost his life in the Battle of the Kings if Trynne had not interrupted the battle between him and Gahalatine’s sister. He willingly relinquished his position as the king’s champion to Trynne herself, the woman he lost and still loves.

My father is dead. My half brother is still the king. All that I had carefully built has crumbled around me.

Sometimes I wish I had never found that secret tome in the poisoner school in Pisan. I can still hear it whispering to me. Can a book be alive? It tells me that all the great ones have suffered defeats. That glory comes to those who struggle on past disappointment and failure. I was born to be a queen, not that Kiskaddon girl. She has robbed me of what was truly mine. How easily I could do away with her. But that would not be enough.

She must suffer as I have done. She must lose all that she has gained. I can be anyone I want to be. A poisoner. A Wizr. A duchess. A queen.

Morwenna Argentine




The Assizes

A month had passed since the Battle of the Kings. The feeling in the audience hall was somber as the members of King Drew’s council sat around the Ring Table in the palace of Kingfountain. They had gathered today to decide the fate of a criminal and a traitor.

Trynne Kiskaddon sat next to the king in the seat called the Siege Perilous, reserved for his champion. It had once belonged to Trynne’s father. She still remembered where she had been standing, years before, when the Fountain had whispered to her that she would one day sit in that seat. A shudder passed over her at the thought. She had never wanted it. And now she would have to help the king pass judgment on two people whose trespasses had shaped her life: Dragan and Morwenna.

Dragan was her father’s enemy. A Fountain-blessed thief who’d not only attacked her, but had also played a role in her father’s abduction. And Morwenna . . . the king’s blood-sister had admitted to trying to sabotage Trynne’s family. She’d also committed treason against her own brother.

King Drew had given the task of judging the Assizes to Lord Amrein, the master of the Espion and the king’s chancellor. Lord Amrein had spent countless hours interviewing witnesses, seeking to reconstruct the events of the last few months, and now he was presenting evidence to the council while they ate from trays brought stealthily in by servants, and sipped from gilded cups. Together, they would decide the fate of the prisoners, and then the king would render his judgment.

Though Trynne had seen it countless times, the majestic Ring Table, hewn from a tree so massive it took up the majority of the audience hall, never failed to impress her. And yet the others’ stern expressions, revealed by the flickering flames of the torches mounted in sconces on the walls, were a reminder that none of them wished to be there.

Most of the chairs were full. The King and Queen of Atabyrion were both present. Trynne had rescued Lady Evie from Chandigarl herself, and Trynne’s husband, Gahalatine, had dispatched one of his Wizrs to retrieve Iago from a ship that still had yet to make it to the Forbidden Court. It almost made Trynne smile to think about how upset Iago had been to miss all the action at Dundrennan. He had complained vocally about it until his wife, rather patiently, had suggested he count his blessings instead. Atabyrion had been attacked and defeated, and now engineers and builders from Chandigarl were reconstructing the defenses and beginning improvements on the harbor.

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