Dàr was born to a long line of loyal protectors. He completed his training at a young age and was posted in the Yurita Highlands, a region known for its rugged terrain and frequent earthquakes. His career was very promising, until he stumbled on a strange object in the center of a meadow.
The moment he saw the object, Dàr knew he should report his discovery to the scholars, so they can investigate, so they can make it disappear. But he did not. His decision changed many lives, including his own.
Years later, as Dàr contemplates the whole of his life, he remembers the strange discovery and the choice he made as a young protector. Long buried memories resurface. Now consumed by regret, Dàr wonders if it is too late to make amends.
"More than an adventure story, an existential philosophy... This book is well worth reading at any one of the multiple levels that are presented by the author. It will disturb you and it will make you think."
Roger Moore, Poet
"The Burden of the Protector feels like a tasting plate for a MUCH bigger and extensive feast... If you’re a lover of new fantasy fiction, this is the novella for you!"
Glen Christie, Author
"It’s a captivating story of a life’s journey that transfers the characters emotion right to the reader."
Rosario Martinez-Rosales, Freelance Writer
The initial idea for this story went something like this. A primitive civilization (or not so primitive) discovers a strange bench in the woods. The object is made of some kind of metal (or silver). It stands out. When someone sits on it, he or she sees through branches the summit of a faraway mountain. There is something on the top of the mountain, something to either protect or help the civilization. Or something else completely.
As you can see, there were many unknowns and many options. It was a fairly raw idea. I wrote it down on July 25, 2012. Then, I forgot about it until December of the same year.
I started writing this story with only the idea mentioned above. Sometimes, starting without any clear direction can work wonders (at other times, it leads directly to nothing). The first scene I wrote was the discovery of the strange object in the woods. The protagonist had no name at this point, but he sat on the object. As he saw the mountains of Ul Darak, I saw another mountain range, one from a story I had written in French many years ago, a mountain range known as the Eternal. This came as a surprise, a very good surprise. Until that moment, I had thought the story was happening in an unknown and uncharted world. But if these mountains were the Eternal, then, this world was Tyronia and known to me.
From there, it came quite naturally that Vìr (originally known as Gigas, a name I never liked and was more than happy to change) was to become the center of this new story. There was so much to learn about him. I am currently re-writing the story in which Gigas first appeared. You can find it on this site titled The Stranger of Ul Darak.
The themes of friendship and self-doubt came from some quotes I had scribbled down. After many drafts, around 10 to be exact, I sent the story to my loyal reader Gaetan. I felt something was wrong with the text, but couldn’t figure out what it was. As I had hoped, Gaetan found some weaknesses, some of which were important enough that I needed to rewrite big portions of the story. It was a lot of work and took some time, but it was the only way forward.
I had the pleasure of working with Tom Edwards on this cover. It was my first experience at collaborating with an artist to create original art. Tom's professionalism made the process easy. I sent him background information about the story and two ideas, one of which I thought would be almost impossible to do. Well, that is the one Tom picked. He quickly sent me a first draft. I liked the idea. When he sent me the final version, I was blown away by the details and precision of the art. I particularly like Dàr and the forest and branches.
I never planned to have this story be my first self-published book. My plans were to publish a longer novel, on which I am still working at this time. This is a good example of an author not deciding what to write, but writing what flows easily into words at the time, with what time is available. I have to say that I had a lot of fun in writing Burden and expanding the world of Tyronia. My hope is that the story, although short, is half as intriguing to you as it was to me.
As mentioned above, I am now in the process of writing The Stranger of Ul Darak, which is closely related to The Burden of the Protector. It is the start of a series to take place in Tyronia.