The Last Apprentice series,
The Darkness trilogy, &
Brother Wulf series
A plot summary of all books with Tom, Alice, Grimalkin, Wulf, & Tilda
with after thoughts and analysis

Thomas J. Ward & Alice Deane
Tilda Ward, & Wulf


Joseph Delaney has twenty books centering on the characters of Thoms J. Ward and Alice Deane, Tilda, Jennt, & Beowolf. There are three main groupings.

  1. The first group is The Last Apprentice series, (13)
  2. The second group is The Darkness trilogy, (3)
  3. The third group is Brother Wulf series, (4) and
  4. Two supplemntal books.

In them Joseph Delaney provides many thrills with a blood-curdling spiritual world he creates for readers. This is the first young reader's book, that I am aware of, that can actually raise a few hairs on the back of the reader's neck. The stories are set in what could be England or the North Atlantic in the 1600's or early 1700's before industrialization.

Inhabited by typical human beings, of that era, with the addition of ghasts, ghosts, boggarts, and other nasties that people of that era are known to have imagined, and some they might not have been capable of imagining.

Thomas Ward, as an apprentice, must learn what the different spiritual entities are, their strengths, weaknesses, and how to control them, if he is to survive and protect the county. How far can he stretch his beliefs and still be true to what his father taught him and what he wants to believe as good and evil or light and dark?

In these books the fears aren't imagined, they really do exist and result in real consequences. One chilling chapter after another and one book after the other.

When I read the first book, I thought others would follow, however, I never imagined the nineteen that followed.

What I really liked about the books. The story is about the struggle the characters have to do good, and not to follow the dark. In their battles they form relationships with others. Relationships, that inform the plot and change the characters. Characters, which readers form a relationship, and care deeply about the decisions they make, with the hopes the outcomes will provide a good and peaceful life for those deserving, who are in the struggle with dark and light, good and evil.


Titles by groupings:




Supplemental books

  1. A Coven of Witches
  2. The Spook's Tales and other Horrors



The Last Apprentice series includes

The Last Apprentice: Revenge Of The Witch - 1
Joseph Delaney
Revenge of the Witch cover


Tom (Thomas J. Ward) knows his parents want the Spook (Mr. Gregory) to take him as his apprentice. When an agreement is made, Tom knows his farming days are done. Departing, his dad gives him his tinderbox and his Mam encourages him by telling him he has gifts that will be important for him to become a Spook.

Tom’s training begins as he leaves the farm at Hangman’s Hill with explanations that the soldiers ghosts, he has feared all his life, are actually ghasts.

His next test is at 13 Watery Lane where he is to spend the night with ghosts.

Arriving at Chipenden, the Spooks home, his training continues with introductions to witches dead and alive, boggarts, and to beware of girls with pointy shoes.

His first trip to town on his own to get provisions has him tussle with bullies who want a share of what he has. Alice chases them away and he promises to return the favor.

Continues his lessons. Learns long ago everyone was happy and content, then the darkness from the North brought an ice age for thousands of years.

Digs pits, learns about witches, boggarts, pits, salt iron, silver chain, and Ley lines.

After a month the Spook tells him he will train him if he wants. Sends him home to visit and decide for sure. Wants to quit, but his Mam tells him he has to stand up because he is the only one left to fight the dark.

He returns to Chipenden, sent to town for provisions, meets bullies, shares some, Alice gives him cakes to give to Mother Malkin in the pit. Spook is away on business, he gives cakes to Mother Malkin and finds she bends the bars and escapes. Not knowing what to do, he makes a bargain with the boggart to help. He shows him the library where he reads about Mother Malkin, her son Tusk, and grand daughter Bony Lizzie (Alice’s mother). He tracks her down, kills her with the silver blade on his staff and goes to save a child Tommy.

When he gets to Bony Lizzies her house is burning. While talking to Alice, Bony Lizzy starts a ritual, gives him a potion, and attempts to take his blood and thumb bones. Alice helps him escape. The Spook arrives, kills Tusk and binds Bony Lizzie with his silver chain.

They consider what to do with Alice (pit or Aunt in Staremip). Decide to let Tom decide after he talks to his Mam.
Get to farm. Something is not right ... Mam is gone.

Mother Malkin returns, possesses Snout, tries to drain Ellie’s baby, cut out Tom’s thumb bones. Alice kicks Snout with her pointy shoes, Tom uses salt and iron and they both stab her. Alice wants to burn her, Tom stops her and Mother Malkin tries to escape, however, she enters the pig pen and is eaten.

Tom thinks he should put Alice in a pit, because he thinks she helped take the child’s blood, but when he talks to her, he finds that Bony Lizzie used Alice’s blood and has been for years.

Knowing she is a victim, he decides to take her to Aunts (Agnes).

Saying good by he tells her if she ever needs help, he will help her. She tells him, the scratches on his arm is her brand and they will meet again. Ain’t no doubt about it.

The Last Apprentice: Curse of the Bane - 2
Joseph Delaney
Curse of the Bane cover


Joseph Delaney continues with his second book from where the first ends. More thrills and scares from the spiritual world that will raise more hairs on the back of the necks of adolescent readers.

Again the story is set in what could be England or the North Atlantic in the 1700's or early 1800's before industrialization. Inhabited by typical human beings of that era with the addition of ghasts, ghosts, boggarts, and other nasties that people of that era are known to have imagined and some they might not have been capable of imagining.

Thomas Ward, as an apprentice, continues to learn, but now with his master weakened, he is thrown into life and death situations not only for him, but for the people he has vowed to protect. This second book has stepped up the action, suspense, and mystery to the next level. One chilling chapter after another.

Mr. John Gregory (Spook) is ill and sends Tom to deal with a boggart (ripper) who’s tormenting a priest. With the help of a rigger and his mate he digs a pit lines with iron salt and glue, lures the boggart, lowers the stone and binds his first boggart.

While Gregory recovers, Tom reads the Spook’s early journals and discovers that he met and fell in love with Meg a lamia witch. As John is getting better he learns his brother dies and they are off to Priesttown.

Priesttown is controlled by priests and a Quisitor who burn witches and spooks.

John was a priest there before he left to become a Spook.

His brother, Andrew, is a locksmith there.

A bane is bound below it in the catacombs behind a silver gate.

To avoid being captured the Spook and Tom sneak into town at the same time a cartload of prisoners is being brought into the city to be put on trial for witch craft. Among them is Alice.

They have Andrew make a key for the silver gate.

Tom is abducted by Father Cairns who tries to convince Tom, that Mr. Gregory sold his soul to the devil and the only way for Tom to save his is to give himself to the church. Tom refuses and they hold him for his own good.

The Spook is captured, tortured, and going to be put on trial and burned.

Meanwhile Tom escapes to warn him, but it is too late.

Tom gets the key from Andrew and a map of the tunnel and tries to help them to escape underground.

When he enters he is approached by the Bane and learns John was cursed by the Pendle witches and is supposed to die in a dark place, far underground, with no friend at his side.

Tom finds and frees some prisoners. John is not among them.

Having to flee from the guards he goes back to the silver gate and finds the Spook there. However, when he hands his staff to him he reaches for it with his right hand. Knowing it must be the Bane he tries to negotiate an escape. When it doesn’t work and he is being flattened by the Bane, Alice arrives, spits in its face, and it vanishes.

Tom questions Alice and finds the Quisitor drowned her Aunt when she was put on trial and then sold the cottage and land, kept the profits, and brought Alice to burn as a witch.

The Bane wants Alice’s blood and tries to make a deal offering a longer life, freedom, and more.

When Tom wakes the key is gone and Alice is by the open silver gate with her fingers dripping blood. Tom confused wants to consult with Mam, but Alice refuses and goes to the burning to see that the Quisitor gets what he deserves. She says she gave her blood to save them and it is only once so she can’t be controlled unless she gives three times. Tells Tom he can’t leave because you’re mine. One day you will thank me and the Bane is no worse than the Quisitor. I’ve done it for all our sakes.

Confusion rescue Mr. Gregory, but he is non responsive. Quisitor on the run. Tom is still not sure what to do so they all go to Mam.

Talks to Mam about quitting. She tells him he is needed more than ever with the Bane on the loose.

Talks to his dad and his dad tells that he met his Mam chained to a rock by the sea with her left hand nailed to the rock. He freed her from the chain and she tore her hand loose and kissed him. She left her two sisters, went with him, bought him the farm, had seven sons, and one day he is sure he will die and she will go back.

Talks again to Mam. She gives him a letter with instructions to open only at time of great need. Also gives him the silver chain.

Spook recovers with Mam’s help and decides to visit the ghosts of Bane's victims. Maybe Naze who bound him can provide advice.
Head to Chipenden. While there Bane attacks the house. Boggart chases it away at a cost.

Alice comes to warn of Quisitor. They set out for Heysham and Naze. Alice follows.

At a farm Bane attacks throws Tom agains the wall and disappears. Quisitor close so Alice calls the Bane who attacks him.

The Spook is worried about Alice communicating with the Bane so asks her permission to blindfold and plug her ears. She agrees. Get to Heyham, talk to Naze, tells how Bane was bound and can only be killed if he is in the form of flesh, deep in the catacomb, and his heart is pierces with silver, but so much energy will be release it will probably kill whoever does it.

Spook repeatedly tries to get Tom to leave, but he keeps on following. Thwarted he decides it is a time of great need and reads Mam’s letter, that says one will die and he must do what he was born to do.

When the Spook tells Alice to call the Bane she does, which will trap it forever in the catacombs. However, instead of killing it he tries to bind it with the silver chain. Whe he cast it, Alice removes her blindfold and accidentally gets in the way. Spook tries to stab it in the heart, Tom also and eventually does. Tom dies, Alice touches his arm and he comes back.
Back in Chipenden the Spook is going to put Alice in the pit Tom dug until Tom asks, How this is different from Meg?

Spook decides she can stay if she earns her keep. Copy book, teach Tom all she knows about witched.

Goin upstairs Alice tells tome I like it here Tom, Nice big warm house. "One day this house will belong to us. Tom, Don’t you feel it”

Desperate for my blood the Bane was. So I made the bargain before he drank. Ask you and Old Gregory could go free. That’s why he attacked me. Couldn’t touch you. You killed it, but I made it possible.


The Last Apprentice: Night of the Soul Stealer - 3
Joseph Delaney
Night of the Soul Stealer cover


Tom, the Spook, and Alice are comfortable at Chipenden when a hooded figure rings the bell and hands an envelope to Tom for J Gregory and the boggart roars in anger. John throws it in the fire. When Tom inquires, John says he is a failed apprentice.

Leave for winter home Anglezorke and plan to leave Alice with the Hurst, a farmer and wife near Adlington. Tom and Alice wonder why. Tom shares that Meg Skelton, a lamia witch is there.

As leaving Tome thanks the boggart and it makes a piece of paper from the letter with the words “Give me what belong to me or I’ll make you worry you were ever born. Upon can start by.” Left on it.

Stop by Tom’s farm to say hi and get the final apprentice payment. Talks to Mam. Say dad has weeks to live. Tell Tom they are proud of him. Winter will be hard as dark (Golgoth) is going in power. Stay close to your master and help each other.

Go and leave Alice at the Hurst. Spook asks about Morgan and tell them to end him to Anglegarke.

Tom meets Meg and she confuses him for Billy. And says is it worth the effort, none seem to last very long?

John shows Tom how to make tea for Meg and make sure she drinks every drop. It makes her forget who she is.

Asks if he should go for provisions. No. Keep away from both villages Adington and especially Blackrod. Go to bed an wake with load thumping. Go check… Earthquake … House on Ley line and if Boggart moves it can …

Gives Meg boring team and she says she was up all night trying to repenter.

Shanks bring the provisions and seeds Meg.

John show Tom cellar with nine witches, boggarst, Betsy Hill, lamia witch Marcia Skelton (Meg’s sister).

Meg tries to go down stairs. They talk about memory tea. Which is better this pit or tea?

Wanted to ask. Why what is good enough for one witch wasn’t good enough for all.

Emily Burns dies.

Spook tells Tom time to see how the girl is coping. Finds Morgan’s parents abused Morgan and his sister.

Spook says Morgan its lazy, wants power, and takes advantage of people and the dead to give him power. If you let your heart rule your head, then the dark will beat you every time. Say the will sort it out tomorrow, but William comes and tells the about a boggart rock chunker and they go to take care of it.

Talk about Anglezorke. Page sample for Golgoth with alter to sacrifice to him. Give blood and he sleeps deeply to allow winter to retreat and spring to come. Morgan was alway interested in him.

Visit blacksmith get double blade ax and are shield. Go to tree with boggart, attack, set fire, boggart vanishes. Luddock farm safe for now as it will move somewhere else.

Four days later Alice arrives, sent Hurst, to tell there is a boggart at Moor View Farm.

Get there fight it, Spook injured bad, weaken it with cloud of salt and iron, scream disappear. Spook need doctor. Go Andrews, Dr. Bad pneumonia, won’t survive the night, does, won’t survive second, does, wakes drinks wind, Alice returns feeds him roots and herbs, sleeps cough up phlegm, better. Hursts return clean up. Morgan arrives, taunt dad, goes up to Spook, Spook tries to get Morgan to stop, stay ways from mound. Morgan refuses says could make it easy give back to me what is mine.

Spook says you will kill yourself.

You never cared for mom and me once Meg Skelton came.

I tried to hep you both.

Goes to his room and leaves.

Alice and Tom check room with Tom’s key. Find northing.

Shanks helps take Spook back to Anglegarke.

Tom and Alice argue about Met and given g her tea.

Shank brings a letter for Tom about his da in bad shape.

Alice tells tom John Gregory is sending her back to Moor View Farm for getting too close to Meg.

On way home Tom meets Morgan.who tell him hi dad died last week. Asks if he wants to talk to him,

Gets home. Jack upset because he is late. Says letter went to wrong address. Finds Mam left. The farm was willed to Jack except one room left to Tom. Tom says he will be back in Spring to check out room, goes back to Moor View farm.

Gets to the farm, Alice isn’t there, Morgan locks door, tells him he wants him to get the Grimoire that Gregory owes him from the Chipenden library and wants him to become his apprentice. Has his dad trapped in limbo and can torture him until he does.

Goes to consult Spook. Arrives Meg answers door and seems better? Calls him Tom. Tom figures something is wrong, but it’s too late. He ends up in a cell next to the unconscious Spook. Escape to Andrew. Plan … but blizzard makes them wait for morning. When Tom wakes in the morning there is a letter from Morgan to meet him in the churchyard. Does. He tells him Morgan’s mother is Emily Burns, and gather is John Gregory, mother had a break down and had to go to foster parents Hursts. He was the 7 son of John Gregory … Tells to bring the Grimoire to chapel on Tuesday remember dad.

Tom, Alice, and Andrew go to house enter second floor window. Free Spook. Alice and Spook leave Tom goes back for the Grimoiere. Finds Marcia upstairs feeding on birds, escapes her, binds Meg, leave but blizzard so goes back puts Meg in pit, deal with Bessy Hill and Maria? Safe on steps on steps. Spook and Andrew arrive. Spook binds Marcia. PUt in pit, Sends Tom to clean up. He takes the Grimoire. Spook enters, questions. Talk

Spook says he doesn’t have any children. Morgan is manipulating you. I did take Emily Burns from my brother, only half my fault as she left him and then later left me for Edwin Furner. Who came and went leaving her with a child each time until there was Morgan the seventh son. Got him a job at the Moor View Farm and Hurst adopted him. They had a daughter Evelne and they fell in love, but their parents only wanted them to be brother and sister so things turned sour. Emily committed suicide and I accepted him as an apprentice for three years when he quite and went back to the farm.

He wanted the grimoire to erase Golgoth. Thinks he can get power from it. He might be getting stronger and could hurt you dad. We will sort it out tomorrow. However, they were sent on a wild goose chase and when they returned the house was broken into and the Grimoire was gone.

Go to town and tell Andrew to come fix the door. Talks to Alice. She tells him Morgan tried to get her to help him and he wouldn’t stop so she left. Also said he has a congregation on Tuesdays act the chapel. Go see if he is there and then go tell Old Gregory.

Tom does and Morgan catches him. They go dig up the alter, recall Golgoth, use Tom as sacrifice, and call him on the winter solstice. Golgoth obeys the summons. Morgan moves toward Tom from the pentacle and is frozen and shattered. Golgoth in the pentacle speaks to Tom. A fool lies dead before me, are you a fool also? Tom passes out, wakes Golgoth gone, Morgan’s remains are back in the pentacle. Tom tries to escape. Hears scratching, Marcia Skelton arrives, them Meg, bite the rope… says few humans have been this close to a lamia and lived. Count yourself lucky. Get up boy John Gregory is waiting, wants to know what happened. Get the grimoire. We can’t enter the pentacle.

Get back to Anglezorke and talk. John tells him the Grimoire was a trap. He copied the original, changed a word, put it into the original binding, and burned the old text.

So you have three to thank. Witches I pointed out.

When you didn’t return I went to Andrew. Alice told me about chapel, but you were gone. With the blizzard I needed Meg to sniff you out and Marcia to dig you out.

Your dad should be okay now to find his way to the light.

Spook takes Meg and Marcia to go home.

In the spring the spook decides it best if Alice is in Chienden to keep an eye on her. Same deal as last summer. Go visit home with Alice.

Mam is bruin hangman’s tree. Says she is leaving. The happiest time of her life was with his dad and their family. Shows Tom and Alice the room and tells them they will always be safe from the dark there. Says goodbye and leaves for her land.

The Last Apprentice: Attack of the Fiend - 4
Joseph Delaney
Attack of the Fiend cover


Tom is practicing catching Alice, but she usually gets the best of him as she teaches him about witches. Her mother is a Maulkin and father a Deane. Teaches about long and short sniffing, familiars, covens, clams, glamour, scrying, mirrors …

John Gregory wants to sort out the Pendle witches: Malkins, Deanes, and Mouldheels. Goes to consult with Father Stocks at Downham, an apprentice before he became a priest.

Head for Jacks to see what is in the room Mam left to Tom. Get there and the barn is burned, the house ransacked and Mam’s chests are gone. Alice says Pendle witches took them and the family. Talk and decide to Tom should get Old Gregory and F, Stock and she will go to Pendle to survey the situation and meet them at the church in Downham.

Talk to neighbor, Mr. Wilkenson, who said when he saw the fire he went to help, but there were too many. They were loading a wagon and a fine looking women with black hair on a black horse looked like the leader. He will report to the constable who followed, found the busted wagon, but all had vanished.

Sent for James and have him meet at the church…

Back Chipenden, Talk … three clams are uniting to plan something something big.

Spook, I have a bad feeling about this so Tom if I tell you to run to that room, do it.

Arrive at Pendle see tree with Grimalkin (assassin witch) sign of scissors.

Arrive at church. Find gathering at Witch Dell to bring back the Age of darkness on the day of Lammas by bringing back the Fiend.

Decide to clean up the graveyard while waiting. Girl, Alice? No Man green eyes. Says Alice in trouble and she sent me to get you. Goes with her, enthralled play games with HJeanette Beth and sisters. Man kisses him, Alices brand breaks the spell and he escapes. Man .. you’ll belong to me when Alice is dead. They leave, Tom follows. Cottages, people gathered and Alice chained. Take her into a cottage. Tom enters finds Alice downstairs in a room with five mirrors, Unchains her, but can’t leave cause she is bound there controlled by Man who has a lock of her hair (burn to unbind). Picks her up and leaves with her. When out of range of spell Alice tells what she found. Maggie Malkin. Need Mouldheel blood. Jack and family are in the pits of Malkin Tower and your trunks. Got little boxes open, but not trunks.

Back to Presbytery. Share info with Spook. Seer Tibb says they are worth opening and Tom is a threat and wants dead. Tibbs isn’t human. Malkins created him from a boar and …

Tell Tom to make a formal written complaint to magistrate Roger Nowell for robbery and kidnapping at Read Hall to get soldiers to help. He does, a small group goes to M. Tower and the witches dump a chamber pot on them. Nowell gets angry and goes to get more soldiers and artillery. Tom and priest stay at Read Hall with Mistress Wurmnmalde. Tom concerned about her, watches, after dark she leaves in a large coach with dark plumes driven by Cobden. She returns with Tibb. She gave sleeping potion to Father Stock so can’t wake him and leave. Tom tries, but meets M. Wurmnamalde in kitchen. SHe has an accent like Mam. Ask to buy trunks, Tom not for sale. Need to as timers running out for Jack. How do you know … Your Mam and me are old enemies, want revenge. How did you get … Jack had a key to the room, when he went in it affected his mind, hard for his wife to care for him and daughter and she lost her son. Shall I place them in Grimalkin’s care?

Soldiers … Pendle will swallow them.

Tom figures she can’t take them unless he gives them. Asks for time to think. Gives him a day and night.

Thinks. Can’t leave Father Stocks if Tibb feeds again he will die.

Tibbs says he sees his master dead, girl betray you, die for you, all for nothing. Mother was wrong to bring you into world future is hopeless, you can’t do what can’t be done.

Tells Tibb … can’t see in the trunk can you.

Tell me what is in there… I’ll tell you what is there… your death.

Tibbs goes.

Morning … F. Stocks … talk … You were right M. Wurmalde is power behind clans uniting and summoning fiend. You need a doctor. No Spook… Bring John.

Escap from house.

Arrive Downham Spook not there. Alice … He and James left, write a note for Spook & James …

He and Alice head to Read Hall. Alice troubled by Mab's spell. Says Man wants to tell Tom she will exchange the trunks and help guide through the tunnels of Malkin Tower, help save family, and give lock of hair back. … I think we can overpower her in …

Arrive at Read Hall. Tom unlocks door find Stocks dead with dagger in chest. They frame Tom fo the murder, tell him he will hang before the month is out. Look for Alice. Lock in holding cell and M. Wurmalde says give me the keys and all can be put right. Constable Barnes takes to Malkin Tower with artillery and soldiers fire all day. Night Tom going to escape witches closing in tries to warn Cobden, but under a spell … Man Wurmelde wants some of the blood… Tom says no and if take, no deal Man. Ok come .. Alice is with me, been negotiating… Wurmelde says the family is dead. No Tom … she lies.

Ok 3 trunks no keys till sage.

Enter tunnels see Maggie M (whispers with ahead …) let Mab lead, with attacks her, Tom and Alice grab her Alice demands … give me what’s mine, Tom burn it, then rescue Mab.

Check cells. Find Ellie.

Soldiers breach wall, witches escape through tunnels past Tim …

Go up to store room where trunks are. Malkins flee. Soldiers leave … Mouldheels coming for trunks.Going to kill Mary so sent the out to trees and give them the keys. Can only open one trunk. It has wedding dress, coins, shirt, books, endnote to Tom. Only he can read and it says the others can only be opened in moonlight my sisters are sleeping.

Man has masons come and they repair the walls. Ask about Wurmalde and Man confirms want to unite clans and raid Old Nick, but Man says it is too much of a risk.

Open trunk, release lamias. Man not pleased says she will join clans and Wurmalde to raise the fiend.

Tom stays in tower. Wait for Alice and Spook. After dark leave by tunnel and find Alice and Spook. Left Jack and family at Roughly Deane … Tom upset. James convinces some town folk to chase Deanes out of town. Master Nowell and Constable Barnes are missing. Spook suspects charges will disappear. James tells Tom Mam asked him to m over back to farm support Jack and build a forge.

Go down tunnels and see lamia witches. With dead Maggie gone. Make it to Agnes Sowerbutts and bring family to Tower.

Head out to Read Hall. Nowell dead, TIbb dying (had only nine weeks to live. Tells Tom fiend will be summoned with Tom’s death. Mam was immortal with dark power, reached to the light and will destroy the dark with you as her weapon, which will end you. Spook finishes Tibb.

Go to town to rally villages. Say Father Stocks called the meeting. Convince them to go to the hill with torches to disrupt the summons. When do find there are many more witches than thought. Man Mouldheel, Anne Malkin, Old Florence, Grimalkin, M. Wurmalde.

James leads charge with hammer.

Spook and Tom attack. Too many then lamia swoop in.

Wurmalde runs, chase reach carriage lamia carry her off and dropper on Gore Rock.

It’s over … Alice No they already summoned the fiend. You’re in danger run to the room, we’ll follow stay till safe. How know? Trust your instinct, 2-3 days, the coven will loose power over him and he will turn to other matters.

Run meet Grimalkin, fight .

In room untill he doubts and wonders about the purpose of life. Father Stocks appears and Toms helps him pass on to the light. Then his instincts tell him it’s time.

Spook and Alice are waiting on the hill. Start to fix house. Ellie, Jack, James come back.

Wonder about TIbbs prophecy … she will love you betray you and die. Was it Man or Alice… It’s okay the future isn’t fixed.

Ask Alice about scratches, Brand… Why? What did Mab do? Kiss me… Well not that I could do anything about it being paralyzed.

Well, it kept her from enthrall or you would have been under her control.

It is so witches can't control you like that. Apart from that don’t mean much. Not if you don’t want it to.

Happy? Yes. Which are you using, fascination or glamour?

Both, with a wicked smile.

Goog to be back in Chipenden.

The Last Apprentice: Wrath of the Bloodeye - 5
Joseph Delaney
Wrath of the Bloodeye cover


Chipenden. The Spook is away on spook business and Tom is at Chipenden feeling he is being left behind because of the Fiend so he thinks he will get provisions and Alice says she will, again he feels she is protecting him. However, there isn’t just the Fiend to worry about there is a war going on and people of the county are despair.

Not much provisions in town and he runs into a group of soldiers who press him for the army and plan to take him south against his will.

Alice uses an illusion fear spell to help him escape. Tom upset, because he thinks she used dark magic.

When Spook finds out he decides it is time to send Tom to Bill Arkwright for combat training.

Alice, Spook, and Tom set out to meet Bill at a bridge. Tom asks for some money so he can write Alice, Spook says he can write once a month and send him a letter too.

When get to meeting place Matthew Gilbert is there to collect Tom as Bill is off on business.

Alice say if need help use a mirror to let her know. Tom no … not using dark … Alice … sometimes need to fight dark with dark.

Spook says write after first week to let know how settling in.

Arrive at mill and note on table …

Bill returns early morning …

Here so I can harden and toughen you up. Teach about water witches, skeet …

To rid of them need Bill will torture them for punishment, then kill them and feel their heart to the dogs (Claw, Tooth) it save time rather than putting in a pit like John Gregory.

Why let dead walk in house? Won’t answer. Tom finds out they are his mom and dad.

Teaches Tom to swim, practice with staff, work dog.

Called to deal with a selfie (seal women) How do you know if she is? Dogs will know. They chase her into the sea and she changes. Her husband depressed that he lost his wife for 20 years. He was happy. Town fold were jealous. Tom swears he will never do that. What harm were they doing?

Have more sacks and lumps practice. Teachers to use both left and right hands.

Goes upstairs after Bill drunk and hearing … Sees two coffins. Abraham and Amelia Arkwright. Mr Arkwright walks in on him and tells him he is meddling and hits him. Decides to go to Chipenden. Dogs and Bill follow catch him and give him a letter from Spook to Bill. It tells Bill he needs to toughen him up so he can survive the dark times ahead. Leaves him to sleep, think, and goes back to continue training.

Bill is waiting with breakfast. Tells him his dad fell from the roof and died. His mom killed herself and because of that can’t go to the light, so his dad stayed with her. He couldn’t leave them in the cemetery so they are upstairs. Sometimes the three of us talk and I drink to forget the pain.

More practice with dogs, swimming, combat, . Practice to see if Tom can get to Monk’s Hill before dogs catch him. Needs to pass a women in his path with her back to him. Chill, she turns and Bloodeye. Petrified can’t move, hooks him and starts to drag him to the marsh, Claw arrives attacks and bites her finger off and she lets go. Dog saves him and we have her finger so we can find her lair.

Morwena is her name. Her eye will bind only one person, so while one is bound the other can stack her. Read about Ber and her father the Fiend.

Been over a week so write letters.

Asked to sort out press gang so will talk to old man Judd Atkins who will use finger to tell where Morwena.

FInd them chase them away and burn the cottage they were in so they don’t come back. Back to hermit …

Attacked, dog dies, Bill dad? Taken? Tome escape with Claw. Use mirror to tell Alice to tell Spook to meet him at the mill. Get back and Amelia tells him William is still alive chained underground.

Bell rings and Mr. Gilbert has a letter from John Gregory telling him to go with him to Caster. Gets chain Alice there, tell Claw to stay Tome and Alice leave for barge.

Gets dark and see daughter lining over horse (drinking blood). Gilbert says she loves horses. Alice don’t like it. Corpsefowl … Morwena’s familiar. Canal goes into a larger warehouse and the barge enters. Gilbert? Opens hatch and two men enter and Mr. Gilbert is dead. Creature had taken Gilbers form … You the fiend. Could be friend if you knew me better. A friend wouldn’t make me unconscious. All warnings failed. Alice couldn’t sniff Morewena and Toms seven son powered were useless. How can we defeat it? Fiend leaves, has business. Morwena will take car of you. Spook got a letter like you so he is on his way.

Spook takes on two guards and fends off Morwena. Releases Tom tell get Alice. Alice tells them a shorter way back to the mill.

Spook tells them using the mirror told the Fiend where you were. Make plan in morning.

Bill Arkwright probably alive as Morwena’s plan is to sacrifice him during the full moon to bring the Fiend back. Why didn’t he just kill Tom. Probably hobbled. Maybe your Mam did it.

Need to go to Judd Atkins (hermit) to find Bill.

Talk to Alice about using dark to fight Mother Malkin, mirror in Pendle. Alice says, Just doing what your Mam told me … Use anything to protect him.

See Judd Atkins. He says Bill is on Belle Isle. Tells Tom and Alice you two can never be together. Light and dark good and evil sorry. Lamb wolf. Go find another friend. Can’t be Alice.

Alice tells Tom she has a plan to keep the Fiend away. Know what a witch bottle is? Use the blood of the Fiend’s daughter, Morwena’s blood should work to keep the fiend away from us Tom. Tom … no. Argue…. Dark …

See Grimalkins mark. Why did she leave Pendle?

Get to Belle Isle. Find Daft Deana (Beck) to row the to the Isle. Then they Spook, Tom Alice head to the folly (temple).

Claw finds entrance. The only way to him is through a water tunnel. Tom takes the silver chain, knife, and herbs to revive. Couldn’t get under water fast enough, remembers trick Bill talked about with stone.

Gets there Bill alive.

Gets a warning in the pool. Someone using a mirror? Grimalkin is sending a warning - Get out quickly Soon our enemies will enter the lake tunnel. Why?

Bill. Cut bonds, gave some water, and revived with leaf. We need to go through water tunnel … Good thing I taught you to swim. Let’s go …

Grimalkin? What is she here for? Not here for you or your master. Who? I am here for the devils daughter, Morwena, he is my enemy since he demands our subservience. I will not bow to him. Clans divided dark at war with itself. Witches are entering the tunnel. Know you are here. I will face them. Go quickly.

Goes through tunnel, witch grabs foot, stab, Alice helps out of water. Witches following … Got my clothes and we left. Spook locked the door. Should slow them down.

Escape, Deana Beck waiting.

Toms tells Spook about Grimalkin, warns him with mirror, helps fight off witches, and she said water witches were our enemies. I worry about you. Can’t side with any of them. Don’ keep secrets. Looking at Alice.

Travel to at mill. Claw seems to sense something wrong. Alice, something nasty, don’t like it.

Press gang sergeant with throat torn out. Mill door torn off, Fiends hoof prints burnt into the floor, parents bones scattered.

Skelt attacks Tom, brain didn’t work paralyzed, tub enter his throat, suck blood, pain, hear running, Alice screams, Arkwright kills.

Water witch missing.

Sat by stove, Tom sleep, waken by Spook They all see shape materialize … Fiend’s daughter Morwena.

I thirst for you sweet blood. But I will let you live, all but one. Give me the boy and the rest ma go free. Amelia can be at peace. Send him alone into the marsh. Spook, we’ll give you nothing but death. Morwena starts to chant curse, Spook throws salt and iron. Gone…

The Fiend’s foot prints take shape of Matthew Gilbert. He asks Fiend or Friend?

On your decision rests your life and the life of your companions.

Your dark made of flesh can never be my friend.

Talk. Good - evil…

Fiend can’t kill Tom so needs someone else so deals with Tom.

Tom … I will fight Morwena. If I win or loose you will let us live and release Amelia …

A hard bargain. No harder than the task before … Granted.

Grabs silver chain, staff … Sees corpsefowl, another body … member of press gang, body of witch.

Grimalkin. Put away your chain. I’ve not come for you. Tonight we fight together. We have little time she’s coming. Need to fight on higher ground not near water.

The Fiend? Grimalkin … Where I am you won’t see him. I bore his child, a beautiful baby boy, he killed it. I fight first for revenge and second Alice Deane asked me to protect you against Morwena. We will begin by slaying the fiends’s daughter. She will not be alone.

Water witches attack. Save the chain for Morwena. First one then 6-7 …

Then fiend’s daughter. Grimalkin in thrall, one chance … chained. Grimalkin breathed relief.

Another water witch. Tom falls in water. Grimalkin pulls out.

Wakes with water gushing from his mouth and nose.

Reclaim your chain … I can’t touch. Cuts heart out … had to be done. Make sure the dogs eat it.

On your 14th birthday you will be a man. Come to Pendle seek me out, I guarantee your safety and I’ll have a gift for you.

Fiend… They have seen and heard my bargain. Parents are free. However, he also plants malicious things to drive a wedge between the three of them, Tom, Spook, Alice.

Tells Spook if he puts Alice in pit, he will quit. Remember the Fiend told you. Without Alice we’re weak.

Arkwright speaks up. Without Alice … we wouldn’t have won. No pit, banish.

Alice don’t know what today. Ain’t nothing to say. Don’t regret it. Breaks my heart won’t never see you again. Hands Tom blood jar. How. Washed your chain. Be dead without it. Where will you go? Home to Pendle. Only life I can live now.

Grabs Tom pulls close and kisses him. Knows her life is in danger in Pendle.

Spook - six months with Arkwright, practice is brutal.

Claw has pups - Blood and Bone.

After training done, leaves for Chipenden on barge. Fiend … sit Tom I’m here to teach you not harm. I kept my word. A gift because someday we’ll work together and a special child of mine, my beloved daughter, Alice Deane, will achieve great things. Her real mom is Bony Lizzie. When she was born she gave her to a child less couple for safe keeping.

How good was it that I released Amelia so Bill he was useful in asking to banish Alice so she can reunite the clans. She did everything for you Tom. But when she used a pool of water to thank Grimalkin I told her who she really was. Didn’t take it well. No hope she will be your friend. Her life with you is over never be by your side. Unless I choose to intervene and you go down toward the dark. The three of us together.

No I serve the light.

Stay he commanded. We haven’t finished yet.But, I managed one step after another upward beyond the barge and jumped on to the tow path, gathered my stuff and walked.

Chipenden, Talk. Spook. I watched her clean the chain. She didn’t have the jar. Maybe she knew she was the Fiend’s daughter and used her blood. Maybe why she was so quiet and didn’t defend herself.

Time will deliver the truth.

Spook. Do not contact her. Okay It will be difficult, but yes.

Letter Mam. Says she needs something, but will return and talk to him on the eve of midsummer.

Starting the third year of study. History of the Dark.

Keeping thinking about Alice. She tried contacting me twice using the mirror in the bedroom. But I promised. Be glad to talk to Mam and see what she thinks about Alice. I want to know the truth.

The Last Apprentice: Clash of the Demons - 6
Joseph Delaney
Clash of the Demons cover


Each new book amazes me how Joseph Delaney continues to increase the depth of characters, intensity of plot, and supernatural dimensions of his writing style.

This sixth book, as the others, continues with the story after the previous ended. However, he is good working review information in a precise and quick way.

The setting begins as previous books, but after gathering an unlikely group of evil and good characters together, they are loaded on a ship and set sail for Greece. We finally get to discover more about Mam (Thomas Ward's mother). Her past, present, and future. How Tom has been learning and developing skills and strengths that Mam is counting on in her plan.

Is Tom ready for the challenge? Will he be successful in what he unknowingly has been prepared to do. The plot and all the many characters cohesively fit together and tell a story that compels the reader through a dark evil world where not only life is at stake, but the lose of souls can be forever.


Tom at Chipenden alone while the Spook is away on business when he awakes suddenly and gets a mirror message from Alice. maenad assassin in garden.

Goes out, binds it with his silver chain, wait till spook is back. However, in the morning the boggart has taken its blood and killed it.

Spook back. Why would the maenad think you would be a threat to Greece?

Find signs of other blood in the garden. Think the boggart mght have been drugged. That is why it didn't attack right away.

Spook says this year will study dark. Fiend, Golgoth, Greek Ordeen who are worshipped by the maenads who have a portal to this world ... demons vaengir or flying lamia witches.

Talk to mam. She says the maenad need to be stopped in Greece before they can expand further. Yes she knew Alice is the Fiend;s daughter and she knew it since she met her. She could still be a friend and from a great alliance. Pendle witches are going to Greece to help. Will you help? Yes.

Spook? ... no way. heads back to Chipenden and tells Tom if he isn't back in three days, this apprenticeship is done.

Mam talks more about if the Ordeen isn't stopped they and the lamia will expand out of Greece, the Fiend will tell her about the County ... and they come to destroy you and all here.

Bill Arkwright arrive. Talk Mam.

Alice arrives. Talk. Tom thanks for the warning. Alice. Could have let me know you were okay. Both worry about doing wrong each in their own way. Alice says best if all think Arthur Deane is her father. Best to trust me. Tom. Why do the witches want to help? They realize they did wrong.

Talk Grimalkin. Asks Tom if ready for the gift she promised? Help if I say Mam agrees? Ok.

A blade that goes diagonally across your shoulder and back. It is potent against servants of the dark.

Second is a dark wish. Say I wish, state what you want clearly and repeat a second time and it will be done. Use with care.

Mab talks to Tom. We are on the same side. Tells Alice will be attacked by by lamia, they will suck her blood unti her heart stops. Be a bad summer for you.

Off to Greece. Celeste Captain Baines.

John Gregory arrives as ship is about to depart.

Mam tells about what will happen on Greece.

When Ordeen come all birds and animals will flee, sky yellow, whirllwinds where portal opens 3 days 3 hours later all will be dead or the Ordeen will be destroyed.

Spook starts to give Tom lessons.

Ask Spook why he changed his mind? She wrote an dtold be things I didn't want to believe.

Pirate ship. Attacks. Don't return fire let them get close, let them board us and let the yuong ladies down below finish them. After the slaughter the spook says. I find it hard to stand by andlet such things happen. Bill Arkwright says. Bad buiness, but how many poor sailors lost their lives to the pirates and how many will now be able to go home and see their loved ones?

Then I notice the contrast between Mab and Alice, Mab gloating reveling in what happened; Alice stood arms folded looking sick at heart.

Sirens. Cew in thrall. Put wax in captains ears. Meet Greeks Mam has known who will help. Seilenos ...

Mab revels in Alice being sick at heart.

Mam takes Tom to the house she shared with his father. I need to tell you who I am. I am the Lamia. The very first. The mother of them all. I am not human. My sisters are my descendants. I took revenge on Hera for killing my first children. Killed beyond counting. But I turned to the light and have been compensating to some extent ever since. Restitution for my crimes. Anyone who lives that long isn't the same being. You evole and change. You are my gift to the world to begin a new age of light. Remember you are more than just a weapon to use against the dark You're my som and I love you. Believe that, whatever happens.

Tom and Alice talk. Tells her what Mam said. Asks if spook knows? Don't think he would have taken me as apprentice if he knew my parentage.

Head to Ord.

Both the maenads and us will be heading to the Ord. We will certainly meet. When the Ordeen arrive through the portal a delegation of 13 locals will enter the Ord to negotiate, the experience will derange their mind, three of us will go instead.

If we survive the attack by maenads then we will have to cross the mountains that are crawling with lamia witches. 

Continue journey. Attacked by maenads, Alice leads Tom away using map. Tom wants to fight, but told he is needed later. Enter cave, maenads follow, catch, narrow passage, turn to fight. Loud noise earth shakes and buries maenads.

Knocks out Tom. Alice uses leaf under tongue to revive. Leave tunnel. Follow path … many lamias … Attack. Take Alice, drink her blood, dies, Tom uses his dark wish to brink her back.

Leave tunnel. Follow path … many lamias … Attack. Take Alice, drink her blood, dies, uses his dark wish to brink her back.

Fiend appears as Matthew Gilbete… Chide Tom. Says he used dark magic … Alice … All failed Mam can’t prevail. On your 15th birthday you’ll be sacrificed to achieve Mam’s desperate victory as she turns back to her murderous past. 

Wake… staff… Alice? What happened? Lamias were tearing at me … did it really happen? Yes. Tells he used Gramilkin’s dark spell, Tells Alice her dad was here and tells what he said about Mam. 

Alice. He is lying Tom, as always. Your mam wouldn’t do that. She’d ask you first. What would you answer?

Can we defeat the Ordeen and the Fiend? It's … hopeless.

Blood jar … Your blood? Yes.

Did it feel good to show me up for a liar?

Oh something else, If we use it we would have to stay together forever.

I would worry something might separate us. How could we live like that. She puts it in her pocket.

Meet back with others and mercenary warriors.

Visit monasteries.

Need to destroy the Ordeen before she is fully awake.

Does Tom know he is to be a wooden horse? I will tell him when the time comes.

Tom’s blood one cup.

Rules can have a champion. Grimalkin will be ours. If win life of donor isn’t forfeited.

The blood of Tom is part lamia and will weaken the Ordeen and her guards will not sense us.

Then the Pendle witches attack. Reach the Ordeen and slay her before she strengthens.

Alice and I with Tom …

Wind picks up .. sky yellow … animals and birds fleeing.

Mam says I’m with you … take jar … NO everyone fleeing.

Pillar of fire, portal, huge building, Ord, rain.

Spook tells Tom. Remember your Mam belongs to the light and is doing this for the good of us all. Then adds remember Alice … daughter of witch and devil not one of us never can be no matter how hard she tries.

Grimalkin leads us into the mist and Ord on my right and Alice on my left.

Getting in goes as planned. Grimalkin wins … 

No longer demands Tom’s life, just fill the cup with his blood.   Mirror …

How now full of people. Some Greeks, enchanted, eat the food … 

Grimalkin signals attack. Pendle witches burst in. Mab and sisters, warriors on horses … fight, retreat. Mam, spook, Arkwright … Follow the witches, fight, open gate, don’t have strength or will to enter. Spook Arkwright say come lad work to be done.

Alice held by demon, attack, jab, release Alice, attack lost staff, drew dagger too late but click Alice staff spears its throat.

Fire elements


Food for lamias moving on dishes. Alice, Tom on dishes …

Fiend as M. G. Let me show you the next few hours. Look into mirror, Dishes with Spook in one, Alice … Arkwright, Ordeen now free … 

Asks Tom to give him his soul. I will save them and give you a chance to destroy Mam’s enemy the hobble will no longer bind me.

All right I’ll pledge my soul for you offer. … Done 1 hour

Spook, Alice, Arkwright released. Ask. What happened? It’s as if someone is helping us.

Where to? The dome.

Spook. Your mams doing? When enter Mab is there. What took you? 

Mam’s water **** Scryed it … Why didn’t you tell us? My soul …

Mam? Yes? Delay her.

Used wish, use blade puzzle?

You must escape. It is your destiny to destroy the Fiend.

I will sacrifice myself to destroy the Ordeen.


Chain, staff, blade, delay till Mam attacks.

Talk to it. Who are you? Mouse .. you have much more, speed to *** time, smell death, moon shadow that shows what you’ll become. Your Mother Lamia, silver chain … perfect spiral over her head. On fire something came from inside staff toward heart should be then on fire… salamander fire element.

Focus squeeze time, become the hunter, blade throat, healed … Mam transferred more angel than insect white wings. Leave Tom snatched chain and fled.

Alice, Mam fighting the Ordeen. If we are still here we’ll collapse through the portal and drag us to the dark. Arkwirght says go, I’ll hold them off.

Spook and Alice grab Tom and run. Then Grimalkin and other witches, Mab and sisters.

Talk Spook, what not Mam real ID or deal with Fiend.

Letter from Mam. Mr. Ward … destroy Fiend and about Alice Deane

Tells Spook to remains true to your principles with but two exceptions.

One. To see Thomas safe through the next phase of his life. Two. Alice is the daughter of the Fiend. She could be, most powerful servant of light and both together can destroy the Fiend and bring a new age of light to this world. Be less than what you are so that you can become more.

Tom. Goes to give his soul to the Fiend. Alice follows and pushes the blood jar into his left hand and says to the Fiend. Leave him he’s mine.

Fiend bellows. With rage. How … ?


Alice Tom talk… Something bothering you Tom? Been funny for days. Too quiet, Lost Mam, but something else ain’t telling me.

Fiend in Ord. Told me all were going to die it I didn't bargain with him. What did he want? My soul.

That’s worse than you think. He can torture you forever. It would mean the hobble would be nullified. No longer the threat that you might destroy him or send him back through the portal. He is free to rule the world. He didn’t consider the blood jar. You really need it now and always.

Tom. I thought it needed my blood.

Alice Sorry when those rocks injured you, I took it then.You used the dark wish, sold soul, only thing left was the blood jar.

Tom. When I die he will get my soul.

Alice. Can’t get it if you destroy him first.

Mam dream. I knew you would be compromised by dark its in you don’t blame yourself its part of the burden of being who you are. You had to fall so later you may rise.

We still got each other.

The Last Apprentice: Rise of the Huntress - 7
Joseph Delaney
Rise of the Huntress cover


The Spook, Alice, Tom, Claw, Blood, and Bone head to Chipenden. Soldiers rampaging through the county, burn Caster, and the the Spook worries about his library. See patrol, hide, wait, Spook has a bad dream about Bony Lizzy with her on a throne at Caster Castle with the Fiend at her side executing prisoners.

Review trip to Greece. Bill Arkwright death, Tom sold sou to Fiend, Alice blood jar …

Arrive at village, find soldiers ransacked, burned, and killed all who didn’t run. Spooks house is burnt, library lost, Boggart released as house gone.

Decide to go to Bill Arkwright’s mill. 

Alice can’t sniff Bony Lizzie. Witches came after soldiers  left and released her. 

John Gregory depressed. Alice tries to motivate him … get up, plenty to do, County needs you, need to train Tom …

Head for mill, but find troops occupy lands around there. Decide to head to port, collect debt to book passage to Mora Island where there are half a dozen bugganes  (demons) there and arrive on Island where they are not welcome. Sends Tom to town to book passage off island. Meets Captain Baines, whose ship and crew are impounded. Can’t leave. Small boat came ashore with all dead, blood drained, and thumb bones cut away… Bony Lizzie?

Town patrol enters with subhuman Horn lead with a silver chain. Have him sniff the customers and he claims Alice and Tom have darkness in them. Arrest them and take them to the Tynwald witch tower. Put in cell with Adriana Lonan accused of being a bird witch.

Put them on trial by putting them in spiked barrels and rolling them down a hill. If live feed to buggane if die innocent.

Adriana tells them she was arrested, because she refuses to marry Lord Barreek (shaman).

Horne (bugging keeper) comes to visit his sister Alice. Share Fiend as father. Help me escape brother. No master Stanton will punish me. 

Take them to hill, roll them, Alice declared dead, (stopped heart trick) Tom survives, Alice attacks Stanton. Run … wish you’d told me … didn’t know myself … escape and find Spook, Captain Baines, Simon Sulby (Adriana’s love) whose there to rescue her. Head to Greeba Keep.

Learn Lord Barrule controls Horn, to control the buggane, which is controlled mainly by feeding it humans which are mainly foreigners and people who don’t cooperate with Lord Barrule who rules the Island. 

Spook, Alice, Tom find the bugging and shaman who attack the Spook … fight about to kill it when it and Alice vanish. Dogs attack shaman who controls them. 

Put Tom in dungeon … buggane (cruncher) arrives, checks out Tom and Horn tells him he wants the blood and bones of a 7th son, not now likes to preview his meal … 

Takes Tom to hall, dog fight, Lord Barrule, makes a deal to Dave Bill’s dogs if he fights a witch. Defeat her and release you and Adrianna. Gives same deal to Bony Lizzie. If she wins will release her and her pet (Alice lips stitched). 

Fight begins … Bony. We should work together he will slay both of us. Do it for Alice. Tom solve chains her, but can’t kill her. Lizzie well done now see my plan. Barruie tells him then to fight the pet. Alice raises her blade and rushes toward Tom. Passes him slits twine on Lizzie’s lips. Shamen yells kill them all. Lizzie utters one word freezes all humans with terror. Release me from the chain. I did … she is our only hope? 

They leave by the tunnel and go to Lizzie’s bone yard (if step in wrong place get crushed) in the middle of the labyrinth. Will be crushed if don’t know path in or out.

Alice how escape? Hide behind tree when Lizzie snuck up and dragged me here. She’s planning to get Old Gregory.

Lizzie torments Tom … Boy.. Alice is my gift to the County. She will unite the Pendle Clan.

Lizzie feeds the buggane her blood… says in time … she will control the buggane. 

Lizzie deals with shaman for safe passage. Will keep control of buggane till safe, give up Tom to fight the dogs. Not Alice. Alice and Tom frozen by dark power. 

Tells Tom will give you same deal kill dogs, but since you were too weak to kill the witch, I’ll bet you won’t kill the dogs.

Dogs attack, all three are on top of him, then they all release him, everything goes dark, got of Bill Arkwright appears, points to Tom and says friend, points to shaman and says enemy, they attack, everyone else helpless to move, ghost fades, feel bugging coming, Lizzie and Alice appear. Lizzie says. That went well and takes the shaman’s thumb bones. Tom reaches for silver chain, can’t move hand. Lizzie claps and dogs go to cages and close the doors.

Lizzie. I could rule this island. Be queen.

Alice sneers.

Lizzie, Alice, Tom search for spoils. Find chest. Commands tTom to open with his key. Finds bags of money.

Commands them to fill my bath. Do. See Spook coming. Warn him. I’ll keep her royal hinges occupied. 

Lizzie on throne in long purple dress, red lips, … with Alice beside her.

Spook enters hall … tries to bind with chain, misses. Choking … stops, Lizzie says your death will not be easy. Need to suffer for all the years of suffering you gave me.

Make Tom take out blood jar and threatens to obey her or she will make him smash it. 

Finds out Stanton help shaman and tells him you now work for me. Has him to go tell everyone else to stand down and if don’t will kill one every ten minutes. Time passes, kills until they submit.

Alice and Tom. Why didn’t kill her? Couldn’t in cold blood. Decide to go along for now.

Lizzie commands Stanton to prepare a feast in her honor. Spook and Alice gone.

Tells Tom she will keep him around for now. Sleep up there.

Goes up. Alice. Talk. AIn’t killed you because I begged her and not me because she means me to unite Pendle clans. Thinks can win me over to dark. Can’t. 

Banquet. Lizzie announces they need a roller to protect them from dangers across see. With me or against me? Patrick Lonan (Adriana’s father) rises to challenge. Stamps foot three times and he falls dead. Then tells his spirit it will serve her. Then tell all in attendance declare me ruler, serve me, I will return tomorrow for your answer.

Send Alice and Tom back to tower. Decide now is time to escape through the tunnel. Get staff, shaman’s notebook, find Adriana, Spook, take path through bone years. Dogs out.

Spook says tunnel too big to be bugging.  Is a labyrinth Grim Cache made by the shaman Lucius Grim. A lot of power here.   Sees Alice with shamans notebook… 

Horn shows up and tells them to follow him. No escape unless I wish it.

Horn leads them to the cache of Lucius Grim with thousands of life forces stored. 

Ask why helping them. Revenge for killing master Stanton.

She is getting stronger and will soon control the buggane, need to get the shaman’s thumb bones.

Adriana says she is going home to Peel Mill. Come with.

Alice tells Tom. SHe’s no mother of mine kill her next time. Don’t hesitate. Would have saved a lot of trouble.

Arrive at mill, patrols searching for them.

Envelop arrives for Tom Ward. Daniel Stanton says he left Lizzie and is recruiting forces to oppose her. Coming to seek your expertise on how. 

Trust him? yes. Arrives with 50, Lizzie has 300+.

Lizzie plans to go to Tynwalk to force them to appoint her queen. 

Plan to attack her then. Attack. Lizzie uses dread and takes total control. Stanton charge stopped says will save for a painful slow death for him, you, and our master. Tom attacks, stabs, slips on wet ground, hits head, out. Spook approaches, then lowers staff and falls on his knees. Alice shouts old word. Lizzie drops dagger, Alice charges, rakes her nails across Lizziie’s face. Tom steps forward, to drive blade into heart, freezes, no match for her power. Tom grabs Spook and staff and escape to forest.

How Alice? Agnes taught me. 

Dark? No defense. Surprised her, will never work again Only defense Tom wouldn’t lie.

Lizzie is appointed ruler and left for Greeba Keep.

Spook has nightmare with Lizzie taunting him.

Alice. We need to use the notebook. Spook no dark.

Alice. You once told me to teach Tmi what I learned from Lizzie. This is the same.

Tom. Nightmare of Morrigan as a crow.

Grey pigeon arrives with message.

Adriana. Mother died, list with me much to tell.

Monsters, demons are in woods. Dark Is getting stronger with Lizzie. Need to kill the buggane. Alice needs to distract her and steal the shamans thumbs to weaken her.

Alice. Old Gregory isn’t able anymore. Will have have to have you do all the dangerous work, but he will be able to teach you. 

We can do it. Won’t actually use Dark magic, just to counter it. 

Leave. Adriana put something in Spooks drink. Tom upset, but leaves, because she and Simon are going no matter.

Adriana calls birds to distract and they slip through the gate. Alice searches shaman’s study to find  books to use to control buggane. Tom checks next room, empty gown on bed, trap, compulsion, unconscious, carried down dungeon, chained to wall, buggane is eating yeoman. Horn chained. Says Lizzie is control the buggane now. 

Buggane emerges with Lizzie, goes to Stanton, takes his thumb bones. Goes to Tom, your turn.

Tom. Thought you wanted to be queen and rule the island. What’s happened?

There is enough power in the cavern to rule the world. Your bones will help. I’ll let the buggane take what it wants first. Leaves.

Buggane finishes with Stanton. Then whispers in Tom’s head and takes some of his life force for the cache. Tom sees painful images. Mam, Bill , Dad, … Thinks the Abhuman (Horn) was right I had a sliver of darkness in my soul. I am becoming the hunter and the dark would fear me. 

Tom asks Horn. Can you free yourself? YEs, but how get through door? 

Do it, we’d be stronger together. We need each other. We will attack the witch… find Alice …

Lizzie glares at Horn, screams, and his head crumples … dead.

Lizzie. Now where is that daughter of mine?

Tom. Don’t know, reaches for chain, his arm is paralyzed. 

Lizzie take thumbs. Blade failed. Torches flicker … Alice in spirit with shaman’s grimier … If you hurt Tom you will never get this and never know … Come … bring Tom … don’t hurt a hair on his head.

Alice has his staff and grimoire … Let Tom go … give me the book.

Welcome. Toosing it … Lizzie reachers audit burst into flames.

ALice smiles. 

Lizzie mutters old tongue … won’t work Alice is using case to protect her and Tom. Can’t hurt us, but I can you. Give me shaman’s thumbs. She doe and runs to the tunnel.

Tom we need to go after her. 

Alice. Sorry could have killed her, couldn’t despite what I said. I ain’t har enough to do it. She’s my mother after all. What kind of girl would kill her own mother?

Ain’t safe to follow she controls the buggane and the further we get from cache, the less power I can draw from it.

Spook shows up mad. Blames … ,Adriana says it is all her idea.

Okay, what happened? … update … 

Spook. Let’s deal with the buggane and bury the cache in the cavern so it can’t draw servants of the dark. Includes you girl.

Tom. Not fair. Would be dead if not for Alice. 

Spook… Adriana and Simon to wait here. Spread out. Hydra, buggane under water. Get its heart. Both attack while Alice distracts. Spook finds its heart.

Without Alice probably dead.

Go after Lizzie. Alice going to kill her? No choice she has killed too many. Tells Adriana to go back to mill. NO I need to be there, Simon I go where she goes. 

Adriana uses birds to find her.

Go after her. When catch up charge, Alice sprains ankle. 

Tom has compulsion t jump off cliff.

Simon jumps off cliff.

Adriana calls birds to peck out Lizzies eyes. Lizzie basis them with fire.

Adriana rushes her, but lizzie grabs her by the throat and lifts her off ground.

Tom tries to help, but all his energy to not jump.

Lizzie hurls her over the cliff as she yells.

Lizzie tells Spook Tom stayed behind with Alice because he sold his soul to the Fiend and only think keeping them alive is the blood jar.

Spook looks at Tom Lizzie laughs. 

More birds arrive. Seagulls (rats with wings). They engulf her, Sten soar up and she was gone. Dropping her pecked body below the cliff where the waves drag her into a salt embrace and she was no more..

Spook. If not dead salt or fish will finish her.

Adriana was a benign witch. Tell e ain’t true. Can’t.

Why? To save us and the county.

Alice throws shaman’s thumb bones into the ocean. 

Talk .. share all about … blood jar .. fiend … Grimalkin’s idea on using silver spears and put him in a pit.

Spook. Let me think … 

Tom. Alice, what will the old spook do?

Send for Grimalkin.

But for Adriana, I thin Lizzie would have killed us all. Better get ready to replace him Tom.

Spook. Find a mirror girl and summon Grimalkin.

Go back to town. Chapel collapsed. 

Hunt down and slay all known buggane of the isle.

Grimalkin agrees, but hasn’t arrived. Alice can’t reach her with a mirror anymore.


The Last Apprentice: Rage of the Fallen - 8
Joseph Delaney
Rage of the Fallen cover


Our small fishing boat sailed from the Isle of Mona and approached Ireland when we sailed under a dark cloud, with two orbs of light, green and blue, that looked like eyes, along with hail, wind, and lightening.

Land, captain says. Shouldn’t have trouble here, only jibbers, no spooks. 

Look for rooms, all full till reach an out of the way inn. The owner says no one will stay here because of the jibber. What’s a jibber? Entity that makes jibber noises and affects your head. This one appeared after the chambermaid died, but didn’t have any in town till last year.

Take room. Tom dreams of black crow, Morrigan and the old Celtic witch bill Arkwright killed and fed her heart to the dogs.

Talk in morning. Alice suggests jibbers might be trapped by a dark magic spell that is now out of control.

Night. In attic, hear nonsense, jibber, try salt and iron, nothing. Gibberish stops when Alice uses a spell, Spook tries to get it to go to the light, it says it can’t, lost in mist, tells think of happy moment, mother … take her hand and go to the light, someone is taking me somewhere, to light? yes, enter.

Despite success, the spook isn’t happy. Alice used dark magic to free the girl’s spirit from the spell.

Eat. Spook. Well girl what you do? Tell me all. 

Alice. Her spirit was bound by compulsion and trapped within the inn and forced to utter the spell Addle. Which drives those who hear it to the edge of madness.

So what did you do?

Bony Lizzie would control dead to use them. When done, release them with avaunt … a be gone spell, I used it ... What was I supposed to do? Salt and iron didn’t work, young girl's spirit was tortured, it's not dark, soon we’d all been in real trouble. So I did what I had to do.

Tom. Good come out of it. Dealt with the jibber.

A rift is growing between the three with the use of dark magic.

Feeling strange, Tom finds a crack in the blood jar.

Word gets around town about the jibber and more want them to deal with other. Spook refuses to work with Alice. Allows Tom … When dealing with another jibber they sense another spirit join them. It has one green and one blue eye. Looks like the witch Bill killed … 

It speaks to Tom. Enjoy the storm? Could have drowned you, saved you for later, soon both of you will be in my clutches, 

Tom shows anger …

Ah thanks, you care for her, I know another way to hurt you …

Alice says. She has powerful magic. I think she is responsible for the jibbers.

Tell Spook. Replies ours is dangerous work … 

So Tom and Alice continue.

Stranger visits inn. Introduces himself and offers assistance. Says ghoat mages are sending assassins for them.

Why help? I am Father Shey leader of the Land Alliance we’ve been at war with them for years.

They are preparing for a ritual at Killorglin … 

Leave with him.

The mages want to persuade Pan to enter the body of a living goat. 

They have a new leader, Magister Doolam (Butcher of Bantry).

Why not fight them?

Do, but they go back to Starjue fort and it would be too costly to take.

Tom. Dream Celtic witch, chasing in burial mound, fool to follow, cast chain, entrance disappear, trapped, removes chain from mouth to ask for exit, 3 words and black cloud that turns into a crow, Morrigan? Staff, crow vanishes, not possible, who are you? Tom Ward, no escape, soon she will return, stay away from my land (Ireland). Make deal, open door if stay away. I release her, Can't believe it's her. Bill Arkwright killed with knife in back and fed heart to dogs.

When awakes burnt hoof prints in floor, visit by Fiend. Blood jar smear of blood. 

Alice. Time is running out for us.

Need Grimalkin… Alice can’t reach.

Talk. Ask about Ireland’s greatest hero Cuchulain (Hound of Caan). He died cursed by witches. Morrigan turned on him. Got mortal stomach wound and cut off his head. He is in Otherworld (Hollow Hills) waiting to return to save Ireland. Inside the Otherworld there are sidhe, which are dwellings for a worthy hero. 

The mages hope to draw enough strength from Pan to control the Otherworld which has items of great power. 

Spook like? 

Hammer forged by Hephaestus, thrown never misses and returns to the thrower’s hand.  

Go to rooms. Tom goes to talk to Alice? She's gazing into mirror, Grimalkin’s face, leave. Sleep Alice wakes him in morning, eat, walk dogs, Alice says she will come too. Talk.

Alice. Ain’t good news. Enemy soldiers swept through Pendle to clear out the witch clans. After dark witches drove them into Witch Dell and killed many. Grimalkin scaled the wall and killed their commander, took his thumb bones, and wrote a curse with his blood. Now there is a price on her head. She wants to destroy the Fiend, but doesn’t think she can without you. And now a scryer says you are in danger of death at the hands of a dead witch. 

Yes, the Celtic witch. But it’s possible. Can’t come back. Dogs ate heart. 

Why is the dream connecting Morrigan and the dead witch’s face?


Walk back to Farrell Shey’s and spook tells them they are going to attack the advance party sent to set up a tower for the ritual. Arrive, mages there. Catch one and set tower on fire.

Alice. Won’t the others find out and come after? Split in two groups to trick them. 

Goes okay, but worry the fire will draw others in force. Arrive at Ballycarbery. Not much of a fortress. 

Bed. Awaken, Fiend. You’re almost mine Tom. I can nearly reach you. A while longer the jar will fail. Then mine. Hoof prints burnt in floor.

Morning visit prisoner mage. Question. Tell me about raising Pan. Won’t answer. Shey wants to torture. Spook says no torture. Prisoner looks at spook, answers, sometimes it works if it pleases our god. Don’t know? Variable we can’t predict. Tom gives sip of water. What is your name? Cormac. What variables? Goat, human sacrifice, one female and must choose to die freely to give life to god. So what happens since one has died? Death at hands of our enemies is acceptable to Pan. So if we kill you that will contribute to the ritual. Yes. Since a substitute isn’t acceptable, if we keep you safe the raising of Pan will fail?  Silence.  

Spook. Seems best to hold out here till midsummer, then before they can try again, move against Staigue and finish them.

Alice. Who’s the women? She’s a witch? 

Siege. Hundreds of mages and 18 pounder arrive and demand they release mage Cormac. 

Tom continues training. Learns about Kobalos mages in the north, Pan, that change of hearts of men and women weakens the dark, and how to maybe bind the Fiend. Would be a start …

Bombardment stops, sense dark magic, bombardment resumes this time direct hit … After awhile the wall will yield, so Shey takes a group of cavalry to attack gun, gaining ground until Magister Doolan (Butcher) arrives, Shey retreats. Doolan challenges single combat. Shey says castle will fall need, so need to take prisoner to Kenmare so they don’t get him.

Leave in darkness with escort. Soldier coughs, get discovered, escort runs, release prisoner, fight, separated, head for meeting place.

In morning Tom meets man (Thin Shaun), asks directions, points to cottage, Mistress Scarabek will let you warm and give you some food. He does, leaves staff outside, enters cottage, eats some gruel, spell, dark … Baby cradle, baby teeth? Sniffing like a witch, crawl over me, face of Thin Shaun? Drink Tom’s blood, Scarabek’s face now looks like the wicth in my dreams. Tells she is her sister, that she lured him with a simple spell, he left staff outside, soon she will give her spirit to sarifice to Pan and you will suffer and die for what you did to my sister. 

Takes Tom north to a barrow, force feed him poison gruel, … Let’s go get the girl… wake two people, witch and Alice. Don’t worry boy your time is about over, giving you to Fiend. 

Tom thinks she doesn’t know about blood jar, but ..

She drags them outside separates Alice from Tom and blood jar. Calls Fiend. Materializes, grabs Alice and they disappear. Tom realizes he loves Alice, and now she is gone to be forever tormented by the Fiend.

Tells Tom he will be food for Konal (her son by Thin Shaun the barrow keeper (refuge for Celtic witches)) Then we’ll go to Killorglin where your suffering will intensify.

More gruel, darkness, attic, temperature drops, Alice, crying, Fiend, oxtail soup, take to tower with King Puck (goat), goat changing, more food don’t want dying too soon, Magister Doolan you are here to suffer as our gift to Scarabek for her giving her life for our cause. Cormac arrives, ready to be sacraficed, is beheaded, his blood given to goat, Tom more food, Doolan arrives, says Scarabek and Shaun have vanished, execute boy, Thin Shaun arrives, wait, Don’t kill the boy, Scarabek isn’t done with him, she will be here tomorrow, our enemies have her. Night passes, goat tansforms, Pan …

 Tom darkness, wind, whistle, animals, young boy, Pan, Where am I? Does it matter? You call it the dark, the place you fear most! I said you call darkness. It isn’t, it’s a resting place, Hollow Hills, or known as Tech Duinn or Otherworld by Irish where heroes can endure. Is the Morrigan here? Not now, but does come occasionally. Need you to do something for me. In return you can keep your sanity. Release the hooves of the goat from the silver chain. How. You’ll think of something. Do it, and I will do the rest. I thought Old Gods wanted to be worshipped this way. NO they are forcing me, it weakens me, is abhorrent to me. Can you help with Alice? Who brought her here? Fiend. Hopeless. If could would, can’t.

Back on tower, held hands up to goat, it chews rope, silver chain, use coin to unscrew iron ring. Free, it leaped from platform. Goat dies, Pan released. 

Tom climbs down, escape? Surrounded captured, Take to mages Staigue ring fort. Thin Shaun there. Where is Scarabek? Still captive, will trade boy for her, Who is this enemy? Grimalkin’s sign carved into his forehead. 

Butcher says fill me with power from other mages and I will slay her. Goes, wait, … returns head of Grimalkin, Where is Scarabek? Safe, happy for me to deal with boy. Thin Shaun drags Tom to Doolan, … change … Grimalkin, Thin shaun screamed with knife in chest, other mages panick, Tom run … fight, escape, run, cottage cloaked in magic, rest, go to Kenmare, Alice… I wish I had known, I let Scarabek go. Should have killed her. Things in County are getting better driving enemy south.

Deal with Fiend, where hide him is important. Destroy blood jar he will come. Alice return. Console yourself that when Fiend is gone he will not be there to inflict pain on her. 

Reach Kenmare (Shey) . Talk to Spook … Did well boy, Magister Doolan dead, stopped ritual … Plan to bind Fiend. Dragon lair, Grimalkin cloak, stonemason, rigger, forge silver spears, pit, stone, boulder, halt time when he appears, …

Tom sleeps, wakes, Alice. Mirror Help me Tom I can get back with your help. 


Pan found a doorway back, But I can’t get through alone, can I? Need your help, Tom. 

Where? Dragon lair, Kenmare. Come alone, Pan won’t open to anyone but you … 

Go alone … see Alice, pull me through. It wan’t her it was Scarabek. I was dragged back to Tech Duinn, the Hollow Hills. I’m leaving you here boy for the Morrigan. 

Chased by immense black crow. Bell? Church? Fearsome beast hound, then a bigger monster  (Hound of Calann, Cuchulain) put its enormous hand on its head.  You’re safe here boy Morrigan can’t enter this sidhe. Talk. Cuchulain will help Tom get back. Gives dagger, sword with the head of a skelt, to strike Morrigan. It likes you boy, you’ll belong to it until the day you die. Run straight don’t slow down. Morrigan flying toward Tom Cuchulain changes in battle fury, Morrigan takes the shape of Scarabek, after Tom, run to river, sees stepping stones, closing in, turns attacks with sword, hits her shoulder, falls into water, see wall, too slow, collide with rock, healed ... attacks again, midnight bell, try again, no, bell, had to believe, Morrigan attacks swing sword, head falls off, run hit wall everything black, final bell, silence.

Holding bloody sword, in center of circle, staff on ground, time? Back to Shey’s. 

Grimalkin and Spook, what happened? talk. Hero sword (Destiny Blade) crafted by Hephaestus. Only three, it is best.

Grimalkin and Spook talk about destiny or if we shape the future, agree to disagree. 

Sleep, wake, Grimalkin brings padded undershirt, straps, scabbard, go to cellar to practice, fight, freeze time, 

Grimalkin says she believes scryer Martha Ribstalk, child born to destroy the Fiend. Your destiny, hunter of the dark. We impale, behead, bury head else where to give time to figure a permanent solution. 

More practice, afraid kill Grimalikin … I know when I will die. Scrye I am not meant to die here at your hands. All too soon the week of intense … is over. 

All ready at pit… Spook hurled blood jar into pit … thunder, darkness, squeeze time, thrust spear, troubel? remember advice of Cuchulain, struggle on no matter how hopeless, it hit him, time moved slowly now, others could react, Grimalkin attackes, 1,2, 3, spears, nails hand … master nails, hands, ankles, Cut off head … Tom hero sword. Strike, again … Grimalkin grabs it and puts it in a leather sack. Cover pit, rigger lower stone, cloak spell, .. nothing last forever. 

Grimalkin custodian of head, Tom tells her to take the Destiny blade. No. I have my own weapons. You will need it and know when it is time to hand it on. You were once the hunted, now you have become the hunter of the dark. Runs off into the dark with the sack. 

Spook. Truth is you are lucky to get another chance, lad. There will be a final reckoning with the Fiend. Bought time, until then we need to put it to good use.

Back to Shey’s. Scots join coalition, battle, stalemate. Nothing changed. 

Dogs ran … follow pipes, Pan and a girl in mud-splattered dress with pointy shoes. Alice. 

Pan. I didn’t forget you and what you asked so in gratitude when you bound the Fiend I was able to enter. Your actions brave but foolish, his servants will be after your head and will take it sooner or later. Will she be okay? Who is to say. She has experienced things no living mortal should ever. I have to thank you for dealing with the Fiend. The dark magic of the world has been weakened and no longer strong enough to bind me. I can keep my magic for myself.

Alice did not move, fear, dogs, herded her back to Shey’s. What do? Witch… benign healer? Agnes Sowerbutts. How get her there? Dr. comes and drug her and lock in room. Escape. Follow her. Chicken coop eating chickens. Run into dark. Foot prints, struggle, blood, go on, find one of Shey’s guards dead from a week earlier, Alice tied to tree hair nailed to tree. Scarabek. Konal strapped to her back. With six mages with swords. Morrigan is angry. My Shaun is dead because of you. Tie him to tree let crows peck out eyes.

Poor Tom … Aye girl. Crow peckd. Scarabek shrieks. Crow dead. Tom’s hurt don’t hurt him anymore. Alice? You did that! Ain’t right you hurt Tom. Pick ... on me… Scarabek pulls knife, I will … Aint strong enough to hurt me. Alice rips her hands free and her hair and faces the witch. Scarabek charges Alice, falls to her knees, staggers toward Tom, a nail impaled in her green eye (Alice must have pulled it with her teeth and spat it at her), as she reaches him the Earth opens and swallows her while the earth bucked and shook and the surface became liquid with waves radiating from where Alice was standing. The mages hearing her chant the old tongue run. Alice was spinning across the grass chanting … silence. She bit through my bindings. Relieved I didn’t care what dark powers she used. 

Better Alice? I’ll never be better now, Tom, But I want to be with you. More than anthing else in the world. What’s saved us both. 

Talk. Not now… Tomorrow… 

Spook and Tom convince Shey, Alice was under spell and now okay. 

News enemy from home retreating. Can go home.

Talk? Alice. Not the point. You deserve to know all and decide if still want to be my friend. No matter what … I’ll still be your friend. 

What I did I can’t undo. And wouldn’t or I’d have lost you and my own life forever. BUT I liked it Tom that’s the horror. Before when I hurt or killed something from the dark I felt sick, not this time. I liked winning. I’m like Grimalkin now. When I came back I thought they were tricking me. 

Tom. How did you know? When they ripped your sleeves I saw my brand. It couldn’t be faked.

The chicken coop? I don’t know. I was heading for the wall when smell and terrible urge for blood. What if I can’t cross water any more?

Remember Mam said, She was born with the heart of witch, and she’s little choice but to follow that path.

That girl could become the bane of your life, a blight, a poision on everything you do, Or she might just turn out to be the best and strongest friend you’ll ever have. 

Sure it will be the later.

Where did the power come from?

I think I brought some back from the dark, but I always had more than I showed. Because each time it changes you bit by bit and you get closer to the dark and can never go back. 

Mam .. If you ever lose yourself, then you’ll really be lonely. … It is the goodness inside yourself that makes you what you really are. Loose it and you are truly alone with only the dark for company. 

Going home at last.

The Last Apprentice: Grimalkin the Witch Assassin - 9
Joseph Delaney
Grimalkin the Witch Assassin cover


I reached the center of the woods, untied the sack, and gazed on the severed head of the Fiend, the Devil himself. The eyelids stitched shut, mouth stuffed with an apple wrapped in thorns. I who refused to be in thrall to him, slept with him, bore his child so he could not approach me again after he visited his son. However, it cost be my child, as after he arrived he smashed him against a rock and vanished. 

Years later with the assistance of John Gregory, we bound him in a pit with silver spears and nails and Tom Ward wielded the Destiny blade, given him by Cuchulain, severed his head, which I am on the run with so his followers can’t reunite it with his body.

Grimalkin being stalked by witches, mages, abhuman, and familiar witch, she slows and kills a mage, witch, and abuman, then senses something much stronger following.

Wondering what follows her she uses a mirror to contact Alice Deane’s aunt, Agnes, and asks what pursues her? And what will happen when she faces it?

Answer. A kretch created by an alliance of witches, abhumans, and mages to hunt and slay you. It’s mother was a wolf and father demon. If you fight it soon, you will suffer a mortal wound. Your chance increases the longer you wait to fight it as its strength decreases with time.

However, she remembers what Martha Ribstalk, a scryer, told her the Fiend will not come to her, but will wait till her death to have her soul. That a witch assassin more powerful than Kernolde will form an alliance with a child (Tom Ward) to be born. Grimalkin decides, she will defeat Kernolde and become the Assassin of the Malkin clan and form the alliance to slay the Fiend. Martha also says Grimalkin’s death will be years in the future.

Run … she threatens a fisherman to get back to the County. Doesn’t kill him when she learns he has a wife and child. Heads toward Malkin Tower with two lamia witches. Kretch closing in, fight, sever his hamstrings, thinking it’s master would finish it, leaves, discovers she was scratched and poisoned. 

Mirror talk to Alice, back in Chipenden rebuilding, tells her to tell Tom to figure how to deal with the Fiend.

Agnes Sowerbutts, mirror Grimalkin, the Kretch healed itself is again after you. It’s father is Tanaki. It will not give up and when it is defeated it gets stronger. Worse your cut is poison. Need help, everyone too far. 

Thorne. Tells how Thorne wanted Grimalkin to train her, tells her to kill a rogue bear, she charges, stabs it. Thorne thought she killed it, till Grimalkin shows her she killed it and Thorne merely offered it food. So she trained Thorne Malkin, because she is fearless. Reviews some of their exploits. 

Thorne arrives with help from Agnes to help her get to Agnes’s. 

Agnes believes grimalkin is dying. Grimalkin uses her shamanistic magic to visit Malkin Tower. 

Checks it out, sees the lamia witches, they chase her away with avaunt (be gone) and ends up back in her body with a thud. Wakes and Agnes tells her she has been in a coma for three days. Feels she is better enough to travel.

Talk. Agnes, Grimalkin … Go to Malkin tower, take Thorne with … arrive, enter tunnel pass wight, find lamia (Slake & Wynde), ask why she has entered here a second time? Asks for refuge, shows sack with Fiend, need time to seek a way to destroy him.

Grimalkin, tells Thorne story of her first killing. Deane clan was summoning the Fiend, as he appeared I charged at him threw blades, and willed him away, then ran, the first witch to run me down attacked and my knife hit her throat, I left her heart so she can hunt in the dell rather than suffer in the dark at the hands of the Fiend.To this day Deanes don’t know it was me.

Agnes mirror. Scrye… there was a fierce battle, the supporters of the Fiend won, is joining the kretch in Pendle to destroy you. The Malkin Tower may not be safe. Flee north while you can. Agnes, they are at my door … I am about to die. Why Agnes? maybe linked her to me. 

Lamias go out to survey the situation, there are too many of them, have Agnes bound with a mage holding a rope noose that’s around her neck. Come forward to talk. I am Bowker, give us what is ours or your friend dies. Old witch will be the first to die. On way back lamia lose control attack killed many.

Thorne asks Grimalkin why she didn’t attack? Mage has rodent’s skull that affects my balance. Hear torture of Agnes. Morning they threw a body … lamia retrieves the body, still has heart. Lamia take her body to the dell. 

The beast call Grimalkin to dance … the dance of death. Lamias attacks kretch. Lamia, Wynde attacks, strike head, goes in the for kill, but kretch strikes her first, unable to fly, three Deane witches attack her, Kretch eats her heart. This is what I will do to you Grimalkin. Grimalkin draws dagger, says she will hurt the one they love and plunges dagger into the Fiend’s right eye. Terrible scream. Fiend yells, you have all failed me… you will all suffer a thousandfold. Then Grimalkin tells all to be gone or tomorrow she will take the other eye. If they leave, we will go. Safer here? Yes but we will eventually starve. Where go? … 

Tell Slake her sister is dead, I know praying to god of all lamias … Zenobia mother of Thomas Ward, but she was destroyed fighting the Ordeen. Not destroyed, her spirit lives on. She told me to protect the trunk.

Talk about how she hobbled the fiend. She limited his power, but the terms of the hobble left three possibilities. 1. Kills Tom, reign 100 years and then back to where he came from. If one of his children kill him he can rule indefinitely. If he converts Tom to dark, his domain will last to the end of the world.

Lamia will stay till Tom comes.

Grimalkin will go to Clitheroe. 

Grimalkin talks to Fiend. Discuss what is evil? Hurt people for pleasure because can and see others suffer. That's why I killed our son. Grimalkin only those who aren't sorry.

Reads letter translated from code by Slake on Mam’s story of meeting John Ward, and …

Discover witches will try to raise Fiend on Halloween … Can’t go to Chipenden, Need to deal with enemies.

Climbs top of wall checks to see all gone except one witch. Threatens Fiend and she runs. 

Goes to Clitheroe, Free town from group of villains, a group of deserters kidnapped, Will, secure site before kretch arrives.

Talk about training, tell Will story of Grimalkin… Will’s father slayed great worme, would he help us defeat the dark enemies that follow us? Sure he would, he would be bound by my promise. 

Review Grimalkin story with Fiend and son. 

Leave, head to castle … meet father (Sir Gilbert Martin). Arrive at castle, surrender weapons, what’s in bag, will show you if you want, but if you do, you will wish, you hadn’t, dress for court, talk about what to do, want’s to see head. It still lives, how can this be? Tell Fiend's story. Hope to lure enemies and kill with archers. 

Hide head. Enemy approaches ... Challenge Sir … to personal combat.  It’s a trick … don’t … Sir … duty … Trap, kretch, no mage or witches, kretch attacks, arm, Sir stabs belly, kretch bites head, witches attack, knight’s men charge, archers, dread spell, Grimalkin uses bones for away spell, archers follow me, attack kretch, releases Gilbert attacks Grimalkin, Thorne throws blade, back to castle. Father dies. Priest becomes guardian and will rule. Must leave… Too late archers and Father Hewitt surrender and you will receive a fair trial … fair? Draws blades, fire. Deflect arrows, attack, ... darkness, awake in manacles. Hear a cry. Grimalkin uses shamanistic magic to see Thorne being tortured as they try to find the place where she was touched by the Fiend (place where she feels no pain). 

Use spell to compel guard to let her escape cell. Attack, release Thorne, take priest hostage, gets head, Will arrives, now you die, fire low. They and she throws priest down in front, arrow kills him. Grimalkin. Tells Will, now you rule, rule wisely. They head for Witch Dell. 

Retell story of how Grimalkin becomes the witch assassin.

Arrive dell call Agnes, bedraggled, thirsty for blood, will witches help our cause, they care for nothing but blood, then they will if we get to the center of the dell, didn’t work out well, can't reason with witches who only want blood, fire set, run east. Kretch overtakes them, throw dagger at eye, but it now has a bone that deflects it, it has become too powerful, it was biting savagely into Thorne, then they were gone. Follow tracks and find Thorne’s body, takesn her thumb bones, and carries out Thorne’ wish not to roam the dell, burn her body and eat her heart. 

The witches take the heart to return to Ireland?

Grimalkin used up all magic, health uncertain, alone, needs help … Alice Deane. Thomas Ward or John Gregory … couldn’t risk him if he is the final means to destroy the Fiend. Need to destroy kretch, get head back, then go to Malkin Tower and call him. Couldn’t reach Alice. Go to Chipenden. 

Arrive Tom and Alice talking. Ain’t right Tom, no matter what I do, Old Gregory will never trust me. Goes back to the house, I’m going for walk. Walks to Grimalkin, where’s the Fiend head? 

Talk, need magic to hunt them down … hunt em down one by one … kretch killed … Agnes … dead … Thorne too … Alice just transfer some to me. No. … Build yours again … no time … give me power and heal me … can’ risk it. Fiend will come for you … Tom too … All right I will come with you. I’ll tell Tom. No that would be a mistake. Don’t need to lead him into danger. Right. 

Catch up to their enemies, cloak … no … heal me … I could end up being a malevolent witch. Maybe it’s what you’re meant to be. Best not forget who I am … daughter of Fiend. 

Alice. I’ve no choice, have I? Removes poison, was deep in every part of your body, gives power,

Grimalkin. Finally I believed I would succeed.

Heading to sea …

Arrive and see them ready to sail, too late … Aliceuse magic … It will cost me. What choice do I have now? Everything is against me. As if it was all meant to be, long in advance. ... Changes the wind, sprays salt on witches, ship runs aground, lightening sets it afire, Alice stops spinning, falls exhauste

The survivors gather ...

Grimalkin, I am ready with what Alice gave me and which I will return. I attack, never faster, deal with witches, then Mage Bowker and kretch, Mage uses rat skull, stagger, use Alice’s magic to recover, throw dagger into his leg, Mr. Wolf … dance of death, teeth, eyes, heart … cut wolf into pieces feed to crow, thumb bones will wear … Chase after others and finish them … reclaim the Fiend’s head. 

It is now time for Tom Ward to travel to Malkin Tower to study what his mother bequeathed him and I will help him destroy the Fiend forever.


The Last Apprentice: Lure of the Dead - 10
Joseph Delaney
Lure of the Dead cover


Spook is sitting on a log in his garden at Chipenden. Alice disappeared three nights ago. Review past. Bound Fiend, Fiend took Alice into dark, back changed, Chipenden house burned, library gone.

Spook. Nothing stays the same forever.

Gets letter from Mistress Fresque to come to Todmorden to select books he might want from her collection. As leaving Alice returns, tired, disheveled, warning of dark rising, reviews what happened with Grimalkin, Agnes died, one lamia sister killed, Malkin Tower under siege, three ways Fiend can gain power, Halloween second seventeen-year cycle since Fiend hobbled by Mam. Decide, Todmorden can wait, go to Malkin Tower.

Spook stays, says he would slow down. Tom carries Destiny Blade (given by Cuchulain), Mam (Zenobia) used two other objects to hobble Fiend. Now one is in her trunk, other … Tom needs to find …

As pass dell Alice wants to talk with Agnes, calls, she comes, wishes she died in fire.

Alice asks Tom, what if she were a strong witch? She could have a better existence, Tom, be a useful ally. Use dark magic? I can, but whether I should is another matter. Discuss benefits for Agnes and consequences for her and Alice. Why shouldn’t I help my friends as I have helped you Tom? But more than that I feel something dark and terrible moving toward us and a strong Agnes might be able to help us. Trust me. I knew she would go ahead anyway. She no longer valued my advice.

Cast spell, works, thirsty, move on, sense ambush, Agnes they’re mine …

Arrive at underground gate. Enter … As climb in tower recall past events. Alice. … bad time … don’t like to be reminded what I did here.

Tom. Did what you had to Alice

Mam’s trunk. Slake. Welcome Thomas Ward. I am ready to leave, but I am commanded by your mother … only free when Fiend is destroyed.

Ask Slake about artifact … only for you eyes … Alice. Okay I … Agnes …

First object is Destiny Blade, Slake has the second, Bone Cutter, a silver alloy dagger, forged by Hephaestus, the third is inaccessible to mortals. Hidden in the dark, could be brought forth by one who is brave, powerful, and resourceful. Zenobia knows where and how. She will appear here tonight. Her words are only for your ears.

Alice. Only natural you should talk.

Mam appears in shape of lamia. Third artifact hidden under the Fiend’s throne. I was able to hobble him with two, You can destroy him with three. What ever happens I will always love you and be proud of you. … Now the difficult part. Even if I had all three objects I would have failed, because the ritual requires the person to sacrifice the person you love best on this earth. In your case it is she whom you love most.

You Mam, I have to sacrifice you? No Tom, it has to be a living person. Look into your heart. There is no other way, you must sacrifice Alice to destroy the Fiend…. The only way and she must offer her life willingly. I faced something similar but was unable to do it. I think you are more disciplined … sense of duty … you must, whatever … the cost … Or the consequences will be terrible, the world is in thrall, famine, disease, lawlessness … the people … I am sure you won’t let them down, despite the cost to you personally. I can’t stay here longer. Destroy the Fiend, it’s your destiny. Why you were born. Last I saw, were her cruel eyes.

Tom reviews past …

Slake returns. They talk … You need to find third object. … How? … It’s not you. It’s Alice? The cost on her the last time terrible … she was nearly lost … This time easier. But what cost? Lost to dark? No answer …

Read this first.

Reads Mam’s note … Dark Lord wished I return to his fold … Some advised my to bear his child … abhorrent … Met your dad who was seventh son … but first need to hobble Fiend … did on Feast of Lammas … Called him … used two scared objects (Bone Cutter and Dolorous or Blade of Sorrow), successful, then bore sons and Thomas Jason Ward, grew to love husband, grew closer and closer to light because of John Ward. What two objects? Fiend took dagger (Dolorous or Blade of Sorrow) is back with him. Puts second letter in pocket.

Ritual. Need three sacred objects Destiny Blade, Bone Cutter, Dolorous, then on the hill east of Caster, Wardstone, blood sacrifice, fire of great heat, willing sacrifice, who if cries out once at any time will cause all to be lost and the ritual will fail, then use Bone Cutter to cut thumb bones from right hand and cast into flames, then left hand … Dolorous cut out beating heart and cast into flames.

Alice is to go into dark to seize the weapon to slay herself?

Alice. Why upset? Doesn’t seem like Mam I remember. We’re all changing all the time, gradual so we don’t notice. She can’t help it. It’s in her nature. She still loves you.

What is it Tom? I could’t tell her about the horrible ritual.

Tells her about Dolorous Blade. If it’s the only way, then I will go and get what we need. NO. It’s my decision. Five moths, but sooner I get it the better. NO.

Talks to Slake, wants to release her. She tells Tom you must do what is required.

Tom. Not for you to tell me what to do. I make my own decisions. You have my gratitude and ever need help call … stand by …

Alice stared in astonishment. Alice. Tom you’ve changed. Your promise to Slake without thought of Old Gregory. You’re more of a spook that he is now.

Say good by to Agnes.

Chipenden, dogs greet. John Gregory meeting with Judd Brinscall from Todmorden (visited Romania, Transylvania camouflage robe).

Talk … spook turns to Alice … well girl? Asking a lot.

Tom. NO ... thinking ... to them Alice is nothing. Master Never trusted her despite many times she saved us.

Alice. I’ll do what is necessary … think … talk to Grimalkin. Next morning Alice heads north. Tom. Don’t go to dark till talk. Promise? Won’t go without saying good-bye would I?

Tom, Spook, Judd head for Todmorden.

Red Fox tavern inn, … cross bridge .. go to Bent Lane, Mistress Fresque … must be back before sunset. Hello … call me Cosmina … here is the library …Doomdryte (skelt head on cover, if a mage reads will achieve godlike powers makes mistake, dies;) why do you want it for our library? No want to destroy it. Offer to stay over nigh … refuse offer … go back to tavern, Go back in morning, tell what books want, say Doomdryte, can’t leave, it is willed to stay with the library, if not I forfeit the house.

Tom go hire cart … won’t cross river, will cart books if bring to bridge when sun is high in sky. Goes back to tavern, spook isn’t there, dark …. Back to house, something wrong, library, empty? Chill wind candle out .. see bookcase with one book glowing red … Doomdryte, Staff … snatched broke in half, puny no threat, you’re young you will taste better than your master. Shape shifter? Mistress Fresque? Drew Destiny Blade. Then third source of light. Something charges, cut it .. where is my master? … Again … cut off head. Orange light leaves body and it decomposes. More moving red eyes … leave house.

Next day Mr. Benson waiting with cart .. where books? Sorry not today. Needed to find the Spook. Go to Bent Lane and house, door, Mistress Fresque (strigoica demon), put that sword away won’t need it while I am at you side. Everything in order … and a skeleton lay in the middle of the floor missing skull and my broken staff. That was my partner. Sorry. Oh he (strigoi demon) isn’t gone he will find another body and be back, then he will want revenge and come to take your head. Where is Judd? close to death. Why are you here? Ordered to lure you here. Who? Can’t say. Your masters not dead, but in desperate need of help. Down cellar. Wood box with skelt on it. She opens box … head of the Spook. Talk to him. Revenge for you and your allies for what you did to the Fiend. Help me … M. Fresque. If you summn Grimalkin then you will be permitted to release him from torture. Draw sword, too many surround me. Put it away you’re under my protection. Where is the rest of him. Feed to moroi. Back to tavern. Illusion … I will clean out the cellar at night when things are as they seemed.

I would become the hunter.

Tom. Back to Bent Lane, figured safe as long as stayed on path, library gone it was a hall of mirrors, reflecting the ruby eyes of my sword. Images appeared and I smashed each as I passed them, where the cellar steps were was just a wall, the house could change, another door? another building? Notice many buildings, orbs move from house, gather, … Romanian entities … try to summon me, resist, orbs join and speed away, victim begging to stop sucking its blood, strigoi , I lunged, killed it and its soul disappears as an orb, Find Judd, tells … you betrayed us. Drag Judd across river, sleep wake Judd asks where’s your master? Tell … master dead, head, … Why did you leave us and let us walk into this? Go back to tavern.

Judd says he was in pit for months and they let him out to go get us. I was to married to Cosmina Fresque before a demon took her body as a host. Can’t reverse it. Soul driven out and she is essentially dead.

When I followed her I walked into their trap. Said if I did what they asked they woudn’t hurt my family back home.

Only way to kill their souls is burn or sunlight. When a soul finds a new body it starts a new life so won’t remember old. Threats for revenge are forgot.

They want me to summon Grimalkin.

First we deal with the witches. They are attempting to summon old god Siscoi. We are powerless against it. Can’t kill, its fast, kill at a distance.

Salt and iron might work while still forming. Kill bear, get to pit. Mix salt and iron and dump into pit. Witch under bed, stab with sword, Judd severs head. Men ax bridge supports, crash.

Alice. Is something wrong Tom? Expected you back long before now.

Demon took my master. Help. I felt like a hypocrite asking to help me when I complained about her helping Agnes.

Back to Inn. Mistress Fresque comes. Surrender the two who committed crimes against us to honor your pact. Will do before nightfall.

What pact? To keep them from eating us. We provide three carts of offal and animal blood. Fools … they are preparing to kill you all. Mob attacks the inn to turn over …

Hear dogs Claw, Blood, Bone.. Alice and Grimalkin with the Fiend’s head … trap.

Talk. Update situation. Think they are drawing power from the grimoire to make the illusion, I saw it … Doomdryte. Tom sorry he lead them into this.

Grimalkin. We sensed your trouble and were on way here, don’t blame yourself. Need to leave.

First ,find master. Alice? Of course I will Tom. He’s in a pit to the northeast.

Alice … stay with head and defend it. Grimalkin and Tom go. Wait western moor. Farmer Benson with cart …

Grimalkin. When we attack run, don’t stop stay, behind me guard my back.

Reach John Gregory … leave me be witch … rather die here … Your work isn’t over yet. They are trying to raise Siscoi. Need your help. Grimalkin pulled from pit, through him over shoulder … run. Many in front … Remember my back I’ll do the rest. Fight, exhausted, Grimalkin opens escape route. Meet Alice and Judd and Benson with cart. Retreat, no more attack.

Back at Chipenden. Talk about what happened … Tells Tom get new staffs, food, and try to persuade boggart to come back. Make deal …

Tells Tom I’ve blamed you for getting close to the dark, and suspicious of Alice, because I failed in my duty by associating with Meg. But my associations began with the boggart and led to an alliance with Grimalkin. Using the dark is one way to beat the dark, so that’s what we must do. Not happy, but have to …

Judd sets off to Burnley to tell military.

Alice and Tom leave to … Tom ill at easy with Alice, because of the ritual …

Reach abandoned barn girl ghost. Alice. Help her Tom go to the light …

Find boggart … Boggart. Gregory is old and weary the future belongs to you we make the pact.

Alice. Agree to it Tom. You are the future.

Negotiate. Call Kratch.. till three days after my death.

Back. Grimalkin at gate. Success boggart back. Don’t think I’m welcome.

Judd back. Success. Force going to Todmorden.

Strigoi tries to attack, boggart takes care of it.

Alice. Witches - eight … boggart … scatter

Spook asks Alice. You prepared to go into the dark and bring back what is needed.

Tom. I won’t allow it.

Grimalkin. How long do I need to carry this? Come with me Alice we need to speak alone.

We have our present problem. Spook asks Judd and Tom to go and help.

Bell. Mistress Cosmina Fresque. Message, give us head of Fiend and we will return to our own land and leave you in peace, else this will become a land of undead. Judd says this is our answer and stabs her in the heart. Orb rises and leaves. His task was hard. How would I fair if I had to sacrifice Alice? Have to find another way.

Next day Judd, Grimalkin, Alice and Tom set off to Todmorden.

Alice. Here this is for Old Gregory. The Secrets of the Pendle Covens. I wrote it. Yesterday, you and Grimalkin talk? Ain’t happy are you? Don’t like me keeping secrets from you. But do you tell ME everything? And walked away.

Alice. Grimalkin needs to speak to Tom alone.

The Fiend wants to speak to you. You must choose. Let’s hear. … Fiend. Could have been so different Tom … worked together … Now you will pay a terrible price. You have been told this is your destiny, believe me a very different future awaits you. My spirit can see all … defeat one and another will rise, you will met your match eventually. Today a brother will die and soon you will be the last.

Grimalkin. I was wrong to subject you to that, we learned nothing. He is trying to divert your focus.

Grimalkin … Stay at the Inn. Let them have to come to us where we want, so we can get to the real business .. Fiend’s final destruction.

Soldiers arrive, Captain Horrocks, who lay siege to Malkin Tower, wouldn’t take advice and wait till morning. All are killed. Inn keeper and towns people escape town. Attack Inn…

I am Siscoi, Lord of Blood, Drinker of Souls. Obey me … give us what we seek and I will kill you quickly … Grimalkin hurls blade and it is deflected by invisible shield.

Tom attacks. Grimalkin … Alice deal with it. Judd charges with his staff and pierces where he’d impaled Cosmina’s heart. Explosion of blood and other witches flee.

Morning burn what’s left. Judd … we are all going to die … Grimalkin. Judd you have suffered enough go back and help John protect the house and garden. Tries to protest, but Alice uses dark magic … he says your right … and he leaves.

Tom. asks Why? Grimalkin. We have all we need, to send him away is kindness, I only show rarely.

Tonight the surviving witches will combine to open a portal to animate Siscoi. How do you know? Alice scryed … They will be at Mistress Fresque house. We are about to see who is stronger, Pendle or Romania. Alice smiles.

Alice hides sack with magic. Laugh from sack … Fiend cries out … James is dead … scream. close sack …

Set off.

Reach house. Alice cloaks them. See Doomdryte on shelf… need to destroy it … it controls the house … No time to now as it will be protected by powerful spells. Alice will counter the illusions and later I will burn the house. If you do, then seize it and give it to me or my master …

Continue … three witches creating a pentacle for portal. Can’t reach them through their defensive barrier … Alice takes time to get through … pentacle done, Alice through, Grimalkin runs forward. Grimalkin kills one, Tom one, Grimalkin last … Siscoi appears and his spirit passes through and heads to offal pit to feed.

Mam. Hesitate and you will be destroyed. Take the fight to the god before he emerges. Only you can do it son and hope to survive. Kill the host. Tom managed to draw blade across throat.

Siscoi attacks back … Mam. Believe in yourself. Prove yourself … other wise all I have done has been for nothing and you are not worthy to being my son. The Destiny Blade drips blood. It distracted Siscoi. Tom swings cut off ear. Swing again misses … End? Thinks of training with Grimalkin. Defeated? No you have only begun to fight. Believe because I know I am Grimalkin. … Focus …. Time slows … six foot tongue, cut it , swing at neck, Siscoi counters grabs Tom and lifts him towards his mouth. Fangs begin to suck his blood. Drops his dagger as he falls into utter darkness. Alice…

Tom. Sorry Mam. Mam. You are all I ever hoped you would be. … Tom. Forgive me. Mam. I’m proud of you son. Mam fades.

Girl in pointy shoes … Alice? I’ve come to say good bye, Tom. Don’t really want to go but I don’t have much choice do I? Wait for me, Tom , please. Don’t give up. Don’t ever give up.

Next thing Tom wakes in bed in Todmorden … Grimalkin. Three days despite all Alice did. Did you finish Siscoi? No he was dead when I got there. It was your blood. Spook’s blood blended with your Mams. Poison to vampires. She knew, appeared to Alice soon after Siscoi died and told her.

Did you get the Doomdryte? It was gone. Alice? Gone to DARK to search for the third sacred object. Alice knows you must sacrifice her. How? Her magic is very strong. Scryed it. Saw you preparing to take her life. A witch can’t scry her own death. She is willing to die at your hands. We must find another way.

Back at Chipenden. Talk. Spook reads about Doomdryte … some believe it was dictated by the Fiend to a mage called Lukrasta. Could allow a mage to achieve immortality, invulnerability, and godlike powers.

Letter Jack, James is missing. Judd Brinscall takes three dogs and goes to water mill. Grimalkin back on run, Tom gives her Bone Cutter. She will give it back to Alice when she returns from the dark.

Tom turns 16, three months till Halloween. Mam’s letter more detail of ritual use living skelt…

Still an apprentice, but must anticipate when I will be a spook and no longer have John Gregory’s advice.

The Last Apprentice: Slither - 11
Joseph Delaney
Slither cover


The story opens with Nessa's nightmare, then the death of her father, and introduces her to Slither, a haizda mage, from the dark that prefers human blood to feed its urges. Slither, believes it is honor bound to any trade it makes, which it combines with fear to provide its needs. Nessa's father, who has secretly protected his family with trades, makes his last trade at his death. A trade, which sets the plot of the story. A plot with Slither agreeing to take Nessa's sisters: Bryony, & Susan to their Aunt and Uncle in trade for Nessa. Of course there are many life and death situations to be over come to complete the trade. 

Introduces: purra (human female slaves), Kobalos warriors, Slarinda (extinct female kobalos), town of Valkarly (magical capital), Talkus (skelt god who is yet to be) Shaiksa (warrior assassin), Kangadon (Lance of Power that Eblis used to slay the last king of valkarky), tiumvirate (currently include: Balkai, Lenklewth, Meljann with others waiting replace) kulad of Karpotha (city where human female slaves are traded), Skapien( secret group opposed to purra trade). Star material to forge Star Blade.

A reader of The Last Apprentice series will wonder what this book has to do with Tom's story, and will not be enlightened by the end. All characters are new, until Grimalkin enters over half way through the story. Being on the run with the fiend's head she has ventured to this far north land, where her character becomes central to the plot, climax, and conclusion.

Hints: If Tom survives (killing the Fiend) he may have other tasks awaiting him.

The Last Apprentice: I Am Alice - 12
Joseph Delaney
I Am Alice cover


Review ritual to destroy Fiend with the use of the Destiny Blade, Bone Cutter, & Dolorous Blade in a blood sacrifice east of Caster at the Wardstone, by cutting the thumb bones and heart from a willing victim without crying and throw them into a fire of great heat.

Review Alice’s life.

I was being trained as a witch when I first met Tom Ward. After an uncertain start we fought the dark and became friends. I learned Bony Lizzie was my actual mother and the Fiend my father. Now a sacrificial ritual, on Halloween to destroy the Fiend ,requires me to retrieve the third blade (Delorous) and be a willingly sacrificed as the person Tom loves most of all. To go to the dark and get back I will seek the help of Pan, who helped me return from the dark, after being snatched by the Fiend.

When Tom was recovering from his battle with Siscoi (vampire god) I took his mother’s letter from his pocket and read it several times. I knew from scrying, I was to be sacrificed, but the letter confirmed it and included details about the ritual.

Find Pan. Tell him I am grateful for his help before, ask if he will help again? he says there is a price to pay, I explain what I want, Pan says ... foolish human, you may destroy the Fiend, but cannot destroy the dark, it will balance with the light, and another will replace it.

Not what I wanted to hear. Sacrifice my life for nothing?

Pan. You talk as if this person is someone else.

I just do my best … all anybody can do, ain’t it?

You are brave. I will escort you. Follow white path …

Meets Thorne (Grimalkin’s assassin) who says you know you are being followed? Think it’s the kretch. Hurry follow …

Were you waiting for me? Yes you have friends as well as enemies here.

Why have you come? Living should not enter the dark.

Need to go to domain of Fiend, dagger, ritual to finish him. 

Kretch attacks, Thorne throws 3 daggers with feet, it loses its balance falls into an abyss. Worry its death could bring Tanaki (its father). 


Alice. It must have been good to be trained by the witch assassin. I drew short straw and was trained by Bony Lizzie.

Thorne. You could run away? Tried, then suffered days and nightsof pain, hunger, terror … sprogs (try to eat way into brain), so mostly did as I was told. 

Thorne. I died when Kretch seized me in its jaws, carried me to Bowker, witches held me down, and Bowker took my thumb bones. Terrible to know I would never be a witch assassin. 

Grimalkin learned many things in her travels. Thinks demon can gain power and become a god or reverse can happen. 

Old Gregory thought that about Bane, that it lost power because people no longer worshipped it.

Travel. Reach skelt domain. Skelt freezes me on spot, draining my strength, Thorne charges it, distracted its hold on me weakens, I hit it with a rock, dead or dying, Thorne laps its blood.

I step back horrified.

Thorne. It’s what the dead have to do in the dark. How else to survive?

How could I judge or blame Thorne for surviving?

Find gate, maroon light, smells like stinky eggs, dive through three concentric rotating circles without touching them. Enter … domain. All you can do is drink water. If other … then can’t go back to world of living … If people die here, they crumble to nothing, cease to exist. Don’t know about you Alice. 

Hear corpse fowl screech. Morwena (Tom Ward and Grimalkin killed Morwena and her familiar) attacking? Bell rings. safe. Next gate? Trap? Another way … where friends are waiting to help.

Friends? You might not know them, but they are enemies of the Fiend, and that makes them your friends too.

Let’s go meet them … Steps that reminded me of a cellarI was in on earth … we emerge … Betsy Gammon (old enemy) … trap? Thorne betrayed me. 


Bony Lizzie takes me to kill a spook. She tells me, got coven business, drew short straw, got to do it, don’t dawdle girl or sprogs … story of girl died by sprogs eating her brain … and I believed Lizzie could get mad enough that one day she could walk away and leave me to be eaten.

At that time I didn’t know John Gregory and believed that to fall into the hands of a spook would be the worst fate possible. So we go to the spook's garden where Annie Cradwick and Jessie Clegg are in pits. Lizzie sends me in first to see if safe, then begins to free them. Calls rats to attract flies to get strength from Beelzebub (demon) to give stength to Lizzie to move the boulders from over the pits, then uses Alice’s blood from each arm for each pit to draw witches to surface, when they rise Lizzie tells them girl’s blood ain’t for you, did favor, get revenge on Jacob Stone (spook), then be free, called more rats, feeds them to witches. Then go and check house for …

Alice reflects. I didn’t want to be a witch, murder people, and drink their blood, but I spent a lot of time feeling afraid and hoping to survivewould be good to belike Lizzie, confident, competent, in control, unafraid and strong enough to push away those who threatened me.

Search, take book (The Practices of malevolent witches) to discover what what a spook thinks about witches. Then finds egg sorta thing below floorboards in attic. Need to know about it, keep spook alive, too late, dead. Cut thumb bones to summon his soul to get answers. 

Back to Pendle, summon him, tell spirit will be trapped in limbo, not terrified, ask, what’s in egg? Tell you nothing, tries to break his spirit, doesn't work, waits, but when try again, he has gone to the light. 

Trying to find out about egg, Lizzie goes to see slimy sisters.

Pass Chipenden, tells Alice most dangerous spook in county lives there and Mother Malkin is there, someday we’ll rescue her.

See Judd Atkins, hermit, uses dread to get him to tell about egg. Can only ask yes and no questions … belong to dark? yes How? Not yes no … Taking too much time, puts spell on hermit, you are the egg … talk … need blood of 7 human children on a full moon and 13 witches united and the one who holds the egg gets their heart’s desire. Who are you? Not for you to know.

Lizzie not wanting to share .. goes to Monk’s Hill .. Want to avoid Morwena (powerful Fiend’s daughter, blood-eye paralyze if see) want water witches travel till find 12 with three prisoners to sacrifice to a skelt … then witches attacked and drink the skelt's blood (triples the magic) … then barking … Bill Arkwright and his wolfhounds .. catch some, most escape … Lizzie bargains with caught witch, takes us to your keeper and I’ll share magic, arrive at building hidden by magic, enter, Betsy Gammon is coven leader, bargain with her to help with egg. Why me, not Pendle? Had a falling out, best stay away for awhile. … Tells what needs to be done.

Alice reflects on her situation and killingof children … doesn’t want to loose her bones if make a fuss, remembers when her adoptive parents died Lizzie came to get her … want to control her and teach dark arts. Agnes tried to stick up for me, but Lizzie said she was an outsider and not fit to raise me. Not true she was a Deane. But Lizzie stamped her foot and that was it. I tried to escape, but I was paralyzed with fear and she dragged me off. That was the start of my troubles. If I help Lizzie with this, there was no going back

Betsy agrees to help. We will contribute 12 brats and you the thirteenth. Fair? Yes, back here one night before full moon. 

Go … find child, grab her … Alice asks … why did you murder her mother? Know your place girl. Just sleeping spell. Go back to Betsy, dozens of cages with children and skelts … still two children short. 

Alice talks to child Emily Jenks … said fat lady said skelt will suck blood until heart stops. Trying to scare you … I won’t let it happen, what can you do? I’m Alice … I can and I will. 

But … what could I actually do? Nothing. I wouldn’t be a murderer. I could escape Lizzie.

Left, further walked worse I felt … if didn’t help … guild rest of my life … tell Arkwright? Rain … shelter … light … Barge? Dark wood, Evil looking carvings, throne, Who would sit on a throne like that? I hadn’t spoken aloud but immediately an answer … A good friend of yours would if he could, Alice. I am that friend. One day with your help, that may be possible. I know your name and predicament … I am an unseen prince of this world … Alice sees … face of a boy 13 or 14 golden hair … I felt as if he really cared for me, what happens to me and would do anything to help me. I never felt that way before and it warmed my heart … would you help me please? … Look inside yourself. You have the strength and power to do whatever you wish! You need no one but yourself. Search inside. The thought of going inside the darkness was scary. I fell faster and faster, terrified, why had I listened to this boy? I felt floating in darkness utterly in peace. I had the strength to … wish for what you want … say I am Alice. Then be Alice. Nothing can stand against you. Do you believe? YES. Then go in peace and do what must be done to save those poor children. One day we will meet again, and then you will be able to help me. 

The barge vanished. I set out to Salty Betsy. 

Get back, doubt, find door, wish for what you want, Open! Click … perhaps I could … see children, skelt advancing … will it away, … splat, children stop crying, all witches stare at me. Lizzie attacks first … I am Alice. Trip her … use shoes as weapon, dance of Grimalkin, wish them terrified, they flee. Alice attacks Lizzie with sprogs ... set limit for 5 minutes, takes children, skelt going for egg … let it. Betsy Gammon … magic pushed her away … fell. In water … I watched her sink. What would I save her for? Steal more children? She sinks from sight. Take children home .. meet search party ... let some children join, takes Emil home, her mother is suffering from the dark … Alice wills her to get better … I was free. I was powerful, strong, and invulberable. Nobody could touch me. Not Lizzie, Not even Grimalkin. I will go to stay with Agnes Sowerbutts.

Arrives, lets her know I was here. Agnes slaps me across the face. You little fool! No witch flaunts her power like that, or it will consume her. Something momentous has happened. Now tell me everything. … Alice does … foolish girl … If I am not mistaken it was the Fiend himself … Why would he help the children? He recognized your desperation. Must want you very badly … what mean want me? You’re soul, stand at his side and fight the light. That’s why I wanted to keep you away from the witches who would awaken those dark abilities in you, but Lizzie took you, and now this. LISTEN you can’t use that power for anyone or anything, or it will destroy you. Show me your mark. What mark? Youi know ... Crescent? Grown? A bit. If full dark moon your soul will be hard, What can I do? Survive, limit its use or not at all. What did you do to Lizzie? Sprogs … You will need to use a bit more magic so Lizzie doesn't come after you. Use confusion on Lizzie and the slimy sisters so they forget your part in everything and that the egg ever existed. It's a Risk. I’am not strong enough to keep you safe from her here, so go back and continue your training for now.

I trudged back to Lizzie’s cottage. She was bewildered as if never happened, then Agnes was proved right about time with Lizzie about to end. Lizzie led us back to Chippenden to rescue Mother Malkin from the pit. I met Thomas Ward and my life changed forever. My tie as his fiend has been the happiest of my life.

Now in the dark, I look at Betsy Gammon, Thorne … why betray me? Want to be born again … needs two gods … Morwena .. Agnes right I was a fool … water witches attack … know what it’s like to drown? … drag me underwater .. over and over … Betsy slumps in her chair with knife in throat … disintegrates … other witches killed - someone pulls me away … Come Morwena could arrive … Thorne … sorry … for what? Betray me? Send be to my death? Stopping the destruction of the Fiend? Repay Grimalkin? Why did you come back? regret. I will help you. How can I trust you?  Think about it … what chance do you have on your own? After what I just did they will be after me. We need each other. True. Did come back. Help me get to … I know those who might help, wait here … how long? As long as it takes. wait.

Finally, Thorne returns … go … dodge flying creatures … meet Wynde lamia sister slayed by kretch … why here? … destroy Fiend … entrance high up … grab legs … thank me by getting what seek and end fiend.

Gate … our enemies … trap … Bony Lizzie, Mother Malkin, Tusk … attack … Tusk grabs Alice. Drop weapons or … Thorne does … Beelzebub arrives … rotten eggs? Why betray your father? Betternot to be born than have him as father … why here? … answer … I know your fear.   Tell him nothing… flies swarm … mouth … choke … I know another weakness, bring the girl … Thorne surprise him … scissors … takes thumb … stabs Tusk .. gate … leap … 

Out Thorne puts bones on necklace, gets her thumbs back … 

Continue search … Morwena attacks me, paralyzed, more water witches … skelt attacks her, other witches run to her aid, more skelts pass me attack witches. Then a skelt acts like it wants us to follow it … why would it want to help us?  Leads to throne room. 

Spider web … Raknid. Remembers her testing by 

Maggie Malkin … tests 3 for kind of witch blood, bone, familiar. And how powerful … Marsha (blood), Gloria (bone), Alice (spit blood, lies about bones origins, steps on spider, Grimalkin smiles) witches upset by test want to kill Alice, Maggie raises knife, Grimalkin stops … continue let Raknid decide. tested for strength, weakest will be killed to give power to others, all three take turns and put hand in box … declare Gloria weakest, Marsha three times stronger, Alice strongest, but must forfeit life as one day she may become enemy of dark. Alice objects, others be glad to serve us by giving strength to these two, what do I care I’ll be dead, not that bad, nice cozy in Witch Dell, run, caught, bound, held, others put hands on her, chant, Maggie falls, two witches holding Alice faces in pain, two girls sobbing, all staring at Alice in horror. Grimalkin smiling speaks to Lizzie. The girl is free to go, another life must be forfeit. Leave

Grimalkin speaks, I would have squashed the spider too.That’s what we do. We are the strong ones. We squash anything that we don’t like. Anything that threatens us gets smeared!

You are safe now. Maggie wasn’t strong enough to take your power, another girl will be selected, then Gloria will die as she is weakest. So I am stronger? not yet … Don’t get ideas … 

You have potential.

The test I remember as if yesterday … Raknid was correct, I was the enemy of the Fiend and his servants, including Raknid, the skelt that lead us here, caught and being pulled up, see Many eyes under throne, entities who displeased the Fiend and were being punished,  lea es us, we will, show us where the dagger is … they flee … can’t find it … maybe in web? Climb up and get it … Thorne will … wait … talk … show it to me … you little witch caused big trouble, I was right about you,  a threat to my master, I will show you, moves to the center of the web and shows dagger, How do I know it is it? climb. Whisper to Thorne when he falls slay him. Hold flame to web, doesn’t catch, you fool, gather my power, remember what Agnes warned, so I simply wished … and it was done.  The web went whoosh, raced to Raknid, caught fire, fell, but Delores blade fell faster, caught, threw to Thorne, and she went to work quickly, then we ran. 

Stop to catch breath, look at dagger, sadness of millions of souls passed through me … find the Gare, cave where Tanaki materializes, but too big to fit in cave, Thorne steps between us, use my magic? Surely reaching point of no return … review use and how mark grew … now use for Thorne … my anger became two jets of white flame with each hitting an eye simultaneously, toppled sideways and falls into the abyss, grab Thorne … run … through gate, white path, Thorne asks how? … change subject … End of Tanaki? Unlikely … has powers of regeneration and defeat makes stronger like is son. … Reach Pan’s domain. Regards to Grimalkin, sorry faltered and betrayed you. … I’ll tell her all you did.

Check mark. Maybe not maximum … find Pan … before you return must pay the price … you must help me … do what?  For now just be ready to answer my call when you hear my pipes … and will you do as I ask. Yes. What else could I say? 

Home setoff to Chipenden .. Grimalkin waiting with the sack … good news and bad … Tom is safe … what’s wrong? Didn’t need to go to dark … dagger not needed … don’t need to surrender your life to Tom’s blades … another way … Doomdryte … dictated to ancient mage Lukraskta by the Fiend … give the reader the powers of a god … invulnerability and immortality. You can do this Alice … but at what cost to myself? Maybe better to be sacrificed.

Also my journey to the north found there are powerful mages (Kobalos) can create monstrous creatures, they enslave human women because they have no females, they want to kill all our men and boys and take women as slaves. Must deal with Fiend and they prepare for this new threat. Must use the Doomdryte. It filled my heart with sadness so close and not able to greet Tom, thought my heart would burst with pain, convinced me we can’t tell Tom … would strive to prevent it. Consequences for my … terrible … bound to dark forever, a thing without conscience, compassion, or a shred of human feeling. More terrible that to die at the hands of Tom, but it is the course I have embarked. Grimalkin and I are at the cottage where Lizzie plotted the death of John Gregory and I set out and met Tom for the first time. Now it is the place where I will triumph or die, I must be brave, do what has to be done, I am Alice.


The Last Apprentice: Fury of the Seventh Son - 13
Joseph Delaney
Fury of the Seventh Son cover


I awake from a nightmare where I am cutting Alice’s thumb bones … she went to retrieve the Blade of Sorrow, a willing victim, had not returned, when she appeared in a mirror, garden … I did it, in and out, got the blade, glad to see you, … I can’t sacrifice you … Grimalkin has a plan, uses serious dark magic, Old Gregory won’t approve, see you when we succeed, … she rushes into my arms and kisses me fiercely, take care Tom, Don’t tell Old Gregory you seen me. Best… More  to feel guilty about … I didn’t like it.

Spook, lawyer, makes will, 

Well lad tell me the ritual. Won’t happen, needs a sacrifice, can’t kill Alice…. Girl know? … Reads Mam’s letter to Spook … Stop, barbaric, do that, then we are not fit to be called human. Well got some serious thinking. What’s work for today? Heard bell. Man Briggs accused … of using dark magic … Spook tells Tom to talk to Briggs, he does, then goes to see Bertha and Spook already there. Spook talks to Briggs … tells him he is idiot … Third time he accused her, married 38 years, get real …  Tells Tom just wanted to see how you handled it … did well lad. 

Head back Chipenden. Tells Tom he doesn’t think his mom would ask him to do such a barbaric thing. Tom tells whole story of Mam … still not convinced lad. She was the first lamia, mother of them all … Spook. Seems to be a day for truths … library. Research lamia … discuss if books accurate, Mam was killed by her children, repented, fought dark, wished to destroy the Fiend, sacrificed herself to destroy the Ordeen … still don’t believe the women I met wouldn’t ask you to do that. Tom, she really does. Wonder if he would be as courageous as Alice? Spook. We will agree to differ, but it changes little, we need another plan. 

Fourth year study unexplained … researching together. Time to show you the Wardstone, be first apprentice I did. Despite some deceits or failings of trust you’re the best apprentice I’ve ever trained.

Arrive … touch it … it slow time … Aye and you can too? Yes, but when I use my gift, I am in control, I can move, the rock can’t. Are you sure? Maybe it can through time. Read words carved into rock … it is said a man died there in a great storm binding an evil that threatened the whole world. then the ice came again … retreated … no trace remains … called Wardstone.

Ward also old name for a district. Does it mean it happened long ago? Or in the future? Or go some where else and stay in our time. Could it go to the dark? Who knows? Mystery to solve. 

Back Chipenden, nighmare … Tibb evil creature created to see the future … speaks to me .. I see a girl, soon to be a women. She will love you, she will betray you, and finally she will die for you.

Go to town for provisions, on way back, Mab, Beth, and Jennet Mouldheel waiting … should be glad to see us, here to help you finish the Fiend at that big rock. Nothing stays hidden from me for long. Need our help … thought you liked me once … he’ll come around when Alice is dead. Tell him about Alice, want to see his face … Going to use the Doomdryte … I was hurt by Alice not confiding in me … my fear she would finally become a full fledged malevolent witch … where is she? To well hidden … see you halloween at the Wardstone … won’t be there, … you will … seen it … Her and Tibb’s prophecy?  Alice betray me? Didn’t see me for a week after back and the Doomdryte … against everything master and I believed in? Betrayal?

Night wake … something not right … go out follow source of my fear … near where Lizzie’s cottage was … dead bodies, witches, 12, Grimalkin gripping the skelt dagger, left leg broken, no leather sack, take Grimalkin back to house to help her, opens eyes, stare … had to ask … Alice? Lukrasta! … died attempting the Doomdryte years ago? No he appeared when Alice began ritual, blasted us with power, then Fiend’s servants attacked. … Alice? Think he has her. They took the Fiend’s head, try to return it to Ireland, reunite with his body. 

Grimalkin. Only you can stop it. You’re no longer a boy, you’re a man, you have all three blades, the gifts from you mam, and you’re a seventh son of seventh son. Go kill anyone who stands in your way and bring back the Fiend’s head. 

Ask spook. Is it possible? If anyone else, I would say hopeless, but I seen what you can do … 

Tom goes, follow tracks of many witches …  witches attack … fend off attacks …

Rest, dream, sorry mam, couldn’t sacrifice Alice. No need to apologize, it was your decision, what’s done is done, maybe another way, nothing is certain. Tells she is blessing him with the ability to know location of his prey early, because he needs it. Wakes travels on.

Has flash of light and pressure on forehead and knows where witches are and the Fiend’s head. Gift … But why were they to the south? Travel, rest, wake, flash, enemy, stab, know dead, I knew where they were and I could go directly to the head and get it quickly and escape. Why going away from sea? A dark tower bigger than Malkin Tower. Door opens, party comes out, I knew they didn’t have the head. On the balcony … Alice … prisoner? Another figure appears, she turns … they kiss … the man carries her through the door and it closes. Bewilderment, shock, rage, jealousy, willpower to stop from going … Lukrasta? Perhaps he used dark magic? She had no choice? How do I get head? What about Alice? 

Cart appears with team of six horses, coffin, Fiend’s body? Too many to attack. Don’t think about you! Think about people of county. Put Alice and own safety out of mind. 

I walked, it was over, Fiend won, I arrived on a summit with an altar, would it be here or at the Wardstone? Mab, wrong? Think dad said. Heaven helps those who help themselves. Notice church spires in line… On ley line? Yes help boggart. Thinks … can’t simple put head and body together, need ritual, may Mab right have to wait for Halloween. Circle tower, Kratch … Arrives, feeds rabbits, touches, scratches, feeds off Tom’s blood, more, kill together, climb tower, plan, draw sword and Bone Cutter, top bang door three times, open, witch attack, two more, fight and descend, dread illusion, grit, fight on, hear click from balcony, attack from balcony, orange orb, turn run, boggart, thanks for the feast of blood, boggart visible and attacks with a vortex of orange energy, shouts screams … climb again see coffin and an head … Fiend talks … you can not win my servants are too many, flee while you can. Tom grabs the head, but it is partly attached, readies Bone Cutter. Fiend speak. You have lost Alice. I will end his life and break the enchantment. He uses none. By her choice she is his. By his choice he is hers. He a dark mage she a Malevolent witch … from the moment they beheld each other, they were bound together for all time. Grabbed the head and went to find a paper on the bed. Dear Tom. We now belong to different worlds. Friends once, that must end. Can never see each other again, … I bear you no malice … I cannot help you … I belong to the dark. Alice … no sign of either.

The Alice I knew … gone.

Travel toward Chipenden. The head was getting heavier, I left the trees, hundreds of his servants were waiting. Surrounded I prepared for my last battle when I noticed a horse and rider approaching… Grimalkin … You have done well. Grabs head, I mount behind her, gallop through our enemies and head to Chipenden. Your leg? Used magic so I could ride. You can help me, break it, set it with silver pins. 

Talk about what happened. Share note with her. Sorry Tom, my fault, second important mistake in my life (sleeping with Fiend)  I wanted so bad to avoid the sacrifice of Alice … I believed she was strong enough, but Lukrasta wasn’t dead, that was a lie to scare others from getting as much power, Alice opened the book and he appears and the other witches attack. I thought Alice would use her magic, but they smiled at each other and embraced as if they were always meant to be together. My advice, put her from your mind. I was paralyzed and in a trance, he wanted to kill me, Alice pleaded for my life, also wanted to take the head, Alice said better to let the witches do it, eager to get away they vanished. I fought them, but not at my best because of the spells, I thought I was at my end when your master found me. Next time we will be ready. I know one way his magic might be neutralized, need time to think. We will win, have to win.

Yes. Might triumph over the Fiend, but I lost Alice.

Spook. You have both done well. 

Let’s talk Tom. Share all that happened 

Mam, Alice, best friend or bane. Now I knew. Alice’s mark vanished. She said it would never fade. The bond broken?

Spook was right. I should never have trusted Alice Deane.

Denizens of dark are traveling to the Wardstone. 

Work on Grimalkin’s leg. 

Letter from Jack. James is safe, attacked by robbers, held captive till escaped, Ellie and Mary send love. Jack

Sleep, wake, something wrong, green mist, Spook, Grimalkin, sack gone, boggart, all succumbed … flash of light in head. Knew where sack was … see figure . Turns … Alice. 

I might have know you were the only one strong enough. Why Alice? Ain’t going to like it. Practiced dark magic too many times as Agnes warned. I was always doomed to become, I was born had, don’t feel sorry for me. Ask Grimalkin. The north, best he rules, because the alternative is far worse, believe me.

What could be worse? New age of darkness, Golgoth perpetual winter … it happened before and survived, Kobalos Ain’t human want to wipe out all men and enslave al women. Better put up with the Fiend.

Why doesn’t Griamalkin think so? Revenge for killing her baby. Doesn’t care for human race.

Doing it for Lukrasta? Ain’t in trall to anybody, we are partners, equals, look after each other. Doing the Doomdryte tipped me over the edge, joined the dark, then he was there, my other half, destiny, no going back. Show tom her mark, it became full the moment I met Lukrasta. It shows the truth about me. Why should I leave a strong man for a scrawny boy? What women wold want to spend her life with a spook? Stop begging tom don’t suit you. Not my enemy so I am going to ask you … accept things. 

I’ll do whatever to stop you and the mage is as good as dead.

Your little better than a child .. with simple thoughts and needs. Keep way from him or it’s you that will die or suffer a worse fate. He don’t know mercy, that’s why I came for the head.

Give me the sack. Alice laughs, One twitch of my little finger and you’d be burned to a frazzle. Don’t need to speak or sign. Just have to think it … wish it … you’ll be dead and gone. 

I bound her with my silver chain, starring up at me with wide eyes. What would I do now? I stared down at her, she was sill holding the sack, I reached for it and she vanished taking the sack with her.    How? I used my gift to locate … nothing. Grimalkin arrives… tell her what happened. Talk … why not mention about up north? Intended, but … 

Talk to Old Gregory. Threat from north serious? Alice is right. Get Nicholas Browne’s book. Kobalos, Valkarky, Talkus, .. Grimalkin revenge? No I don’t think finishing the Fiend will birth Talkus. I think we deal with the Fiend first and then Kobalos. Alice in thrall. Way yes. Also changed. Mutual, she has found a place where she feels at home. Forget Alice, Tom, she is not for you. Spook, getting attached to somebody like Alice is hard … Meg … still miss her … best … you’re apart. 

Next morning boggart … may recover. Grimalkin, new blade. 

Tom goes to Beacon Hill, contemplates, how to deal with Fiend? If burn … may release him to dark and could come back, cut him into so many pieces couldn’t find them. Wagon with coffin arrives with six horses and four abhumans and a taller fierce woman (Katrina of Peverel clan) followed by an army of a thousand. 

Back to Chipenden. Report … 

Sleep, wake kratch on chest, need blood, take it, enough, gone. 

Go ask Judd Brinscall to join … brother James … Grimalkin will see about Pendle … 

Give blood to boggart? Yes. Remember Alice and Ban in labyrinth. Third time don’t want the boggart don’t want it to control you. I said: You are brave. You are worthy to walk with me. Suggests an equal relationship not control you. 

Could call kratch to Wardstone, but may destroy him. Too many and Lukrasta would try too.

Reminisces about Biil Arkwright …

Talks to Judd. Infestation of skelts, could use help … agrees to come with … back to Chipenden.

Arrive spook says tomorrow go ask James. Tom annoyed … What about Kratch? Won’t squander its life, but if we face defeat … Deal with Fiend? Ritual out of question. Ideas? Notebook … Cut into pieces … Use hero swords, cut off his thumb bones? Why not? Do to him what you were to do with Alice. Everyone that gets to the body can take a piece and run. Four days … 

Kratch wants more blood. Why not other? Yours is special, we are brothers in spirit and without me you will be defeated, but you? Nothing lives forever. I will not unless … Then give me more blood and I will await your call. I’m afraid you will take too much. Good you say that, only the brave can admit it. You will not die in this bed. Trust me. Will it change me? Yes. All changes between conscious beings results in change. I will become more human and you will become more boggart. Isn’t that fair? Instinct said yes. Okay … sleep … wake boggart still there … hear that? Birds? yes. They sing every morning. Their singing is like music. I would rather listen to them than eat them. 

Grimalkin talk .. forged this for you … gift … May not look pretty but it is designed for you. It absorbs magic. Talk about plan … pieces … yes … use hero swords against the Fiend, but take the Starblade with you. Sooner or later you will need it. 

Told spook about gift. No comment.  Then I decide I should give James a chance to make the decision on his own. Go visit… Jack … here to sort out problems we’ve been having. Actually to ask James for his help … but can sort out a few … Don’t think he’s had enough danger? YEs, but it has to be faced, even if it takes both our lives. Sleep on couch? Ellie fine… Talk to James as he show hi the forge. James reluctant to help. Tells could be bad if not deal … Go to deal with boggart. James decides to go. 

Spooks. 2 days till Halloween. All meet talk how to combine strength and attack. Mab scry .. want to know who dies? John Gregory … keep your dark thoughts to yourself. As you wish.

We need a leader and Grimalkin is the best. They will follow her either fear or respect. We have to accept it and live with it.

Spook if we deal with the Fiend, it’ll be worth it. Pay him back for suffering he’s caused. 

Mab back. Ritual at sunset not midnight.

Grimalkin remember carry both swords.

Arrive … Slake arrives, Why not Zenobia’s plan? The victim is no longer willing. … Slake I flew over and saw the Fiend is already bound to the Wardstone and his head and body are joined. Your plan? You have too few 5-1. Outlook bleak. We can but try. Join us? Yes. … Moments later Grimalkin is leading us. Magic … Struggle to continue forward, Starblade not working? Katrina began mocking us … you will die … our master will be lord at dawn … then Grimalkin cast off the spell and charged. Fought … to and fro … cut above eye … retreat … stop bleeding … turn charge again … clash … Katrina slumps to the ground … Grimalkin onward.

None of moved, paralyzed by dark magic, then John Gregory runs forward, they fought together, I would never see him alive again. At last the magic faded and we surged forward. As we moved forward we slowed as approached the Wardstone. Then I stepped over the body of my dead master with his unseeing eyes looking up at me. All that mattered was survival and make it to the Wardstone. My staff was torn from my grip, used the daggers, close fighting on and on. Eventually we reached their rear guard of giant abhumans with clubs. I reached the Fiend, Slake swooped down. Grimalkin dispatched a abhuman, then James with a hammer, all closing on the coven of 13 chanting, the Fiend’s restoration had come. Too late the Fiend was flesh. I leaped toward him. Starblade protected from the magic. Fiend crid out do not kill him. His soul is mine for all time, but I wish to torment his flesh first. Squeeze time… didn’t … Kratch … three times … I am here brother now we fight to the death. Thank you for so much blood. I will drink .. witches first, the old maimed god is ready for you, but leave some blood form me. Beast, orange spiral of fire … I attacked as Kratch said. Embedded Bone Cutter into his palm … put the Dolorous Blade through his right hand. Used the Destiny Blade sever the thumbs, left then right. Then attacked his head. Do this and all men will die … all women will curse your name. Three cuts and his head rolled away …  Next I plunged the sword into his chest and buried it in the Warstone.  The sword hilts glowed red and melted. I wanted Alice to see this scrawny boy now. Need to collect head and thumbs and flee … rock shifted I fell into blackness. Where was I? A boiling lake? Skelts? surrounded. If left would Wardstone leave me here? The three hero swords impaled in the Fiend I only had Starsword. The skelts came to me, twitched their head, passed me, went to the body, and drank the blood, soon it was covered with them, then they left, each carrying a piece of it and disappeared into the boiling water. Finishing what I had started. Could that be the end of him? Then a green mist, rock lurched, unconscious, cold, not home, orange. I saw a dark tower similar to the one in Cymru where I found the Fiend’s head. Then an approaching figure. 

Alice. Hope your satisfied. Don’t regret that one bit. That’s because you don’t know what you’ve done. That rock carried you to the dark. I’ve been there, one of the domains. Do you know what the skelts did? Fed those bits to their god, Talkus, now has Fiend’s power will lead Kobalos people  … Starting to see what you did? The Fiend, evil, would have stood beside us and not let Talkus conquer … Now he’s gone and only Lukrasta stands between us and skelt god. What about you Alice? What I have belongs to Lukrasta. He’ll. Know how best to use it. 

I preferrred Grimalkin’s … Fiend first then Talkus and Kobalos. 

Where Lukrasta? Tower, waiting to talk. Don’t go. I’lll send you back to coiunty. I will if yo come with me. Ain’t going … Not now. Not ever. I belong to Lukrasta. I feel cold, don’t care about people … I don’t believe that  Alice. … We all change. Climb back on that rock … I’ll send you back. I set off to the tower… NO! Tom! Come Back! 

Go to tower … like one in Cymru. Move through illusion Chipenden, house, room, my name on wall, plus Jenny? Madness?  Ruined village, dead bodies all male, blacksmith, Mr. Ward? Can’t be you’re dead… Kobalos? Lukrasta … Not illusions, potential future… This is my home (tower of time) same you entered in Cymru, You can help change it. I think I will start by ending you. You have made a great mistake. Kobalos god has been born and the mage strength has tripled and will continue to grow. They are breeding nnew creatures. You will play a part in our defense to makeup for your foolishness. Draw your sword. Who do you think you are? …tells 7 son …  son of good man, lamia, child of both. Draw … fires blue light, fades fro starsword. Where get that weapon? Grialkin… Draws sword but doesn’t attack, defensive, cut above Tom’s eye … fight … Tom drives sword through Lukrasta’s shoulder and he drops his sword, pulled sword out, held above head … Don’t Tom Please …. Why beg Alice? Why don’t you save him? Blast me. Don’t moock me Tom doesn’t suit you. I wouldn’t hurt you for anything. Should know that but if didn’t Ain’t possible … the sword. I beat him fair and square. He didn’t want to hurt you. He would have knocked you out with magic and sent you back. That’s not what you Tod be earlier. I didn’t want either of you hurt. You think I am a fool. Didn’t care about me, Lukrasta wanted to protect … Tears on Alice’s cheek. He thought me a fool to fight him. Look who is on their knees. Who’s the fool now? Raise sword. Please… you are both on the same side… stands between them … crying … pitiful … she cared deeply for him. I was divided. Lamia blood … father’s blood … taught me right from wrong. Remembers incident with father and neighbor. Never kick a man when he is down. In the long term it’ll pay off. … later help dad … proved right. Lower sword. You are welcome to each other. Now I want to go home. Alice nodded. Go through that, be back in Cymru in our time. Remember what you told me after we met? Yes moon cast your shadow … shows the truth of you. Pointing to my shadow. That scrawny boy is what you think you see. I’m the hunter of the dark. Don’t make me hunt you. Never want to see you again. Stay away … pit … Lots of thing you don’t know Tom . I won’t waste time trying explain, you’re bitter, angry… but I will tell you we will meet again and you won’t put me on a pit. Thanks for sparing Lukrasta’s life you don’t know how important that was.

Three days … Chipenden. Grimalkin waiting, beside her. Spook’s body. James? ok. home. Bitterness is bad for you … put her from your mind. Alice thanked me for sparing his life, I think she loves him … Maybe she does and maybe she doesn’t. But for now their fates are bound. You did the right thing, I am certain, we must deal with Kobalos, or at least begin. 

Mab scryed … Talkus born growing in srength, Kobalos are preparing .. but will take time. I will travel north and fin out more. Come with? NO. Whether you help now or later is your decision. Eventually you will as they will come here … 

Fix scar? yes.

Coffin, bury, with starsword under it. Grimalkin shakes head …Leaves … not knowing where going or when return.

Dream of Alice. Tied to large flat stone on a raised platform, terrified, Halloween, ritual to destroy Fiend. I’m ready, Good bye Tom, you’re the best thing that ever happened to me. I have no regrets. Now quickly Grimalkin commanded. … cut … thumb … I screamed, Alice was brave. Not one cry escaped her lips… I wake … we had taken a different path, and the future had changed. Boggart on legs. Did not speak or ask for blood … had it I would have willingly. I was unusually dark was changing, the battle would perhaps demand different tactics.

A wise man continues to learn until he dies. John Gregory was wise … learned sometimes a compromise with the dark is necessary. 

Bell, ... I have a boggart in my barn ...

My life as a Chipenden Spook had begun.



After thoughts & analysis for Last Apprentice series


I was so enthralled by the interactions between Tom and Alice through out the two series. Always wondering, how it would play out in the long term. After I finished the first two series and looked to see if there was more of their exploits, so I might find out what might follow into their futures, I found the author moved to another series. And that series says they are brought into the story much further into their future. Therefore, I decided I would imagine what might be their immediate future after their return to Chipenden after the The Dark Assassin. Here is what I imagined might be the beginning of another series, dealing with the dark to the north, that would begin with a discussion between Alice and Tom when they are introduced into the plot.

  • Was it really the Fiend that cried out not to kill Tom? or another?
  • Did Alice really want an alliance with the Fiend? How would Pan feel about it?



The Darkness trilogy

A New Darkness:
Joseph Delaney
A New Darkness cover


Spook, Tom Ward, is at an inn in Kirkby, Lonsdale checking on a dark problem. He locates the ghost of a girl (Miriam) who recently died at the Inn. She tells him. No one listens to me.

Do you know you are dead?

Yes. Something sat on my chest and drank my blood. It was the second time. It had a long coat.

Tells her to go to the light. 

She was the third girl in the county in three months.

When back at Chipenden a girl is waiting at the gate that looks like Alice?

Jenny. Wants to be a spook Says she is a seventh daughter or a seventh daughter.

Tom. Why me?

I’ve been watching you and decided you should train me.

I don’t need an apprentice. She leaves.

Next day rings the bell. No again.

Leaves to check around Kirkby, Lonsdale checking to find what kind of dark entity might be there. Finds small foot prints and slither (tail) marks. Jenny appears. I know what killed the girls.

Tom. You’re lying.

I don’t tell lies. It’s hairy and lives in a tree.

How do you know. Followed it. How with out it knowing? I have a gift to sort a make myself invisible. Show me the tree.

Take me as apprentice?

Tom. Remembers a vision he had of his room in the future of the wall with the apprentices names and Jenny’s was on the list.

Go to tree and creature drops to the ground and scampers off. Follow and loose trail. 

Go back to tree and Tom enters to check it out.

Jenny wants to go in too. No. Stay here, dangerous, you told me that is part of the job … Would be more helpful if you stay here and warn me if it comes back.

Enter, rooms, furnishings?

Nice to see you human. Saves me the need to hunt.

I am here to end your murdering ways.

I’ve killed no one yet.

Three girls.

Purrai? Not murder, they are females. They exist to obey and their lives may be taken at whim. Your land will soon belong to my people.

Tom tries salt, iron, silver chain, nothing works.

It reaches out and grabs Tom and drags him towards its mouth … Breathes in his face and he falls into darkness.

Wakes in a different room. Dungeon? Jenny is hanging from the ceiling by her legs and the creature is drinking here blood. She is conscious and knows what is happening. With my strength sapped, I escape. Jenny thinking I abandoned her.

Go back to Chipenden and dig up John Gregory’s grave and get Starbalde.

Return. Jenny still hanging.

Beast. What a fool, little human to return and sacrifice your life for a purra?

How is it my bosky only worked on you for an hour instead of days?

Your sword … turned, ran, returns with a saber. Fight and Tom cuts off its head.

Lowers Jenny and revives with cold water.

What are they? Kobalos mages.

Take Jenny to Chipenden. Tells boggart not to harm her.

Tell her to sleep in apprentice room and don’t come down till bell rings for breakfast.

Tom uses mirror and asks Grimalkin to come … Busy. I think I killed Kobalos mage. Be there in three days.

Decides to start Jenny’s training as his by taking her to the haunted house. 

Asks her about her parents … last name Calder. home … Grunsargh. 

They go visit them. She tells them Tom is going to take her on as his apprentice. 

Dad. Ok. How much you pay us? Don’t believe in ghosts and such. Should be as other daughters. Be good and get married. Finds out they adopted her after her parents abandoned her.

Tom asks Jenny how do you know you are 7 daughter of 7 dauughter? Mother told me when she visited me three years ago after dad died. She did it so I would be ready when I started seeing the dead. Didn’t want me to go through what she went through.

Tom wonders. Could I trust her?

Head for haunted house. 

Tell her what she needs to do. Don’t open the front door. Don’t let the candle go out. 

Gives her his tinder box.

The Ghast outside are more dangerous than the two inside. They feed on fear. Could’t kill you but close to mental breakdown.

 After midnight, wait and wait she seems she left. Did she go in fear?

Goes back to Chipenden and waits.

Grimalkin arrives on horseback and wants to examine the creature. Ask how he killed it. 

Starsword …

Ah! You need it to survive. Were a fool to bury it in the first place. 

Gives Tom a document about Kobalos written by spook Ncholas Browne. Study it.

What do I do if I see another? Capture it?

No kill it. It’s they are powerful haizda mages. Met one once (Slither)

Grimalkin goes to study the lair.

Tom copies the document. Wonders if he waited too long to join forces.

Goes to get tinderbox from Jenny.

Talk. Why run? Fear? 

No anguish. Their emotions were too strong and my empathy … couldn’t take it.

Tom is impressed she is able to tune her mind to them. Empathy is good.

Hands her his bag.

You giving me another chance?

Yes. One more.

Try another test. Go to hangman’s hill.

What do you see? Afraid?

Soldiers. No. Sad. She tells them their story and asks Tom to send them to the light.

He tells her they are not ghosts, but ghasts.

Passed? yes.

Meet Tom’s family.

Jack is skeptical … girl spook?

Ellie comes to her defense … Tells her taking her on as apprentice is one of the wisest decisions Tom’s ever made.

Jenny journals her story. A dream come true … How real mam told her what she was, how her adopted parents abused her. She her first ghost, cold read parent’s tormented minds, learned to plant positive seeds in their mind. Wonder about using that gift to help others … Worry about being accused and condemned of being a witch. Then discovers spook job and decides to be one. Tried to convince spike Johnson. Didn’t want girl. Heard of John Gregory, then disappointed he died. Tried Judd Brinscall, but he got tired of me pestering him and set the dogs on me. Then heard about Tom Ward. Seemed nice … sad about his death of his master and betrayal of Alice. We both share the same birthday, August 3. I was more careful using my invisibility and took my time until he agreed to train me.

Bell. Young women (Margaret 25) from Ribchester, seeks help finding her missing girl (Katie). Says awitchhas her. Five men went after her fro Bibby Longtooth and she attacked them breaking her husband’s leg in three places and shattering his knee.

Spook and Jenny go find witch and a creature (thumper). Use salt an iron. Witch uses an illusion to create face of demon and hair of snakes. Says take blood an dbones every tasty inch and girl dessert. Cast and bind with chain.

Find Katie dead and bones of other girls. Take Bibby Longtooth back to Chipenden and put her in a pit.

Teach and learn about witches.

Discuss alliance with Grimalkin.

Jenny hears strange noise at night .. Takes several night till go toward tree.

Grimalkin … circle, pentacle. Eggs or embryo hatch vartek beast … lure … into pit.

Bad time to show up.

Talk … glad Jenny … 

Then another vartek … heading south … why didn’t we see it? It is traveling underground.

We need to slay it when it surfaces. Follow … Kill near village. 

Then a dozen villagers show us and accuse them of being witches and using dark magic and want to take the three of them to Priestown and the quisiitor for trial and burning.

Fight … escape … know where live?

Jenny explodes. Why is Grimalkin experimenting with dangerous things?

Tom. Need to see it through her eyes …

Witches eyes?

Need to learn from the enemy.

Wrong for the risk … she is dangerous … Life is cheap to her!

Grimalkin reports findings from tree lair to Tom. See notes in book.

Later reports things in north are worse than she imagined.

Tom decides to go with her when she asks again.

Talk to Jenny about going or train with Judd.

Go visit Judd. He is glad Tom didn’t ask to leave Jenny with him.

Back Chipenden. Boggart warning to intruder in garden. Three kobalos assassin Shaiksa mages enter and boggart finds them tasty but strange. 

Buy provisions, ride north, book passage …

Arrive river at Polyznia Kauspetnd Shaika. There issued challenge to fight human champions every week.

Grimalkin wants to study his skills.

Jenny talk. Do you trust Grimalkin? YES.

She uses people … Tom thinks. Yes like mam. Me to destroy fiend willing to sacrifice Alice.

Better if teach me about witches … sincewe're traveling with one.

Says someone was watching her (Jenny) when she was in the garden who seemed angry. 

Tom thinks Alice?

Jenny who’s Alice?

Tom tells story of Alice. … eventually … she went dark with the dark mage Lukrasta … there now.

Don’t think she would hurt either of us.


Who knows.

Study witches and Kobalos.

Set up camp.

Grimalkin fly red rose on white County flag.

Go watch challenge. 

Back. Need to sleep. Getting up at midnight.

All three leave … protect camp with spell.

Jenny. Hope they don’t dig under it.

Meet three holy men on hill who are mages of this land. Wait… see light in sky … Angel? Face of a girl.

Says brave men died today but not the chosen one. He walks among us.

Talk. This been happening for months … dark magic? Illusion?

Who ever is victorious will be a leader and they will follow when attack our enemies. Tom … that’s why you are here. To kill the assassin.

Grimalkin. I will train you and with the Starblade you will.

They won’t follow me. She planned this all along. I am being used. 

Told others he is Prince Thomas son of the King of Caster.

Go to meet Prince Stanislaw of Majcher. Wolf of Polyznia.

Talk to gain his acceptance and convince him Tom should be allowed to challenge.

Says he should return to his father. However, days after his. Champion suffers an injury so agrees Tom can … 

Continue to train with Grimalkin. Teachers dance of death.

If you win we need to go North.

Jenny writes in Tom’s notebook.

Yesterday was the worst day of my life.

When fight began. I could sense. Tom was scared and felt a sense of doom. Couldn’t sense Kkauspetnd thoughts. As they fight Tom’s fears go and his confidence grows. 

Then he cuts off Shaika assassin head off … Won. But the assassin had pierced Tom’s stomach. Tom’s eyes had disbelief … Yesterday Tom Ward died. 

Only one person moved. Grimalkin. Child get the sword keep it safe.

Why? It was made for Tom.

Grimalkin. This should not have happened. I did not fore see this.

Grimalkin was grieving.

Look at the body. Wound had scales .. he was healing himself … perhaps I pulled the blade out too soon …

Burial tomorrow … 

Bury … figure over head … the casket was moving. 


The Dark Army
Joseph Delaney
Spook's The Dark Army cover


The Dark Army

Prologue Jenny enters tower … describes …

Yesterday was the worst day of my life.

Review. Dark drew them north, Grimalkin’s plan to for Tom to be the champion and combine the armies to gain a victory over the …

Went awry when Tom defeated the Kobalos warrior and his dying act pierced Tom yesterday and today they bury him. 

When he is in his grave a silver light with a beautiful face flutters over it. The coffin rises, spins faster and faster racks disintegrates and Tom spinning falls to the ground, and the winged creature vanishes.

Grimalkin carries back to camp, breathing, scales around his wound that seal it.

Not a miracle. The creature is no angel. His lamia blood …  But certainly he was dead and dark magic so powerful that everyone should afraid. 

Jenny. Whose magic? Someone who planned this for months before I … Lukrasta, who once served the Fiend, who. Now wants humans to survive, and want the destruction of the Kobalos.

Jenny. Isn’t that what you want?

Grimalkin. Yes. Nut sometimes the means he uses are too terrible and the goal is not worth it.

Tom Ward never would have made that mistake on his own. Magic caused it so he could die so the warriors could witness his resurrection. They are pawns, expendable, and the revenge of a powerful mage caused his painful death and more painful resurrection.

Alice and Tom were very close and Tom was hurt by her absence. Now she is closer to Lukrasta than ever to Tom truly rivals for her friendship.

Jenny. How was it possible when he had Starblade?

That is a worry. Suspect Lukrasta dn Alice combined … 

Move camp to Prince Stanislaw’s castle.

Discuss plan. Face who where? Kobalos at Valkarky, Talkus, Golgath, dark army.

Tom dream … Alice … wakes she betrayed me, with Lukrasta, dark, lost forever, sabre, pain, darkness … Grimalkin’s scheme led to death … doesn’t remember being dead.

Army growing.

Lukrasta organized all this? I spared his life … fool to do so. 

What changed? Why should Alice put me through this?

Jenny … review their history.

Hope Ok. I wrote in you journal … I thought you were gone.

Don’t worry.

Amazing sight. More arriving. Grimalkin isn’t impressed. Says they are more powerful with their battle entities and they will slaughter us.

Jenny. I thought it was Grimalkin’s plan?

No she wanted a smaller force to go in learn collect intel and get out. Stanislaw wants full scale attack … if so we will loose. 

He knew you were a farm boy, but let you fight. Why? 

Says the magowie (spooks or maze) said the ageless said you must.

Grimalkin … two mistakes not seeing him pretend and not knowing the Starblade would fail.

Go to Valkarky? No suicide now. Kartuna, slave market, ruled by Lenklewth mage one of the triumvirate. 

Ride across the river like going to Valkorky then turn to Kartuna, gather intelligence and retreat. 

When he sees the enemies power, and you command it, will retreat.

Castle is haunted Tom decides to sort out some ghost to give Jenny the practice. 

However, While Tom speaks to leaders to explain the plan, she decides to go on her own, thought it would be easy, prove she can be a spook.

She goes to the tallest tower and finds a dangerous demon … escapes.

Tom and Jenny go back to another tower to find the entity Abuskai a high mage who was the god maker's (architect) ghost who can’t leave as it is tasked as the guardian of the portal. He tells them he was a fool to help with the birth of Talkus. He wanted to make him to return females, but he was betrayed and murdered. His design changed, the king was murdered, and the triumvirate formed. 

Jenny … in another attic there is a demon. How can it be destroyed or driven away? Won’t talk to Jenny, to him she is purr … Tells Tom. It is Targon who guard the gateway to Talkus. It will annihilate body and soul if try.

A portal to the god? Yes.

It is a guardian and can’t go beyond the portal.

Can Kobalos and humans ever live in peace?  Depends who rule and structure of rule … Could most of the time. YES it is possible.

Created Talkus to rectify the crime of killing all the females. The god I was creating would have helped us create our own female again, but it was reshaped for war and greater power.

Can they change again. Yes the skapien is a group opposed to slave trade and are working to overturn the triumvirate, but they are being hunted to exterminate.

Do you wish the same? I do.

Tom wants to wait till spring before moving north. Griomalkin says need to go now, winter is time of Golgoth and need to know how to stop.

Tom. I am being used, too weak, Going to Chipenden.

Grimalkin kidnaps Jenny and sends her north with first wave. Then tells Tom, what she did so he will go north instead of Chipenden. After we collect intelligence we will go back to County to recruit army.

Jenny and her group are ambushed by Kobalos warriors.

Prince Kaylar saves her, but Kanbalos attacks and removes is head. Jenny uses her invisibility to escape and meet Tom to warn him of the attack and that all are dead.

Grimalkin need to take 12 mend attack now. Need information … Need to go to the Kobalos high mage tower. She uses an illusion to look like a Kobalos warrior in full armor and demands to open the gate and let her in. They do. She attacks, lets the rest in and they fight their way to the top floor of the tower. When they enter they see a large painting of the last kin of Valkarky with a lance (kangadon) protruding from the back of his head. They are greated by the voice of  Lukrasta. Grimalkin where is the Kobalos high mage? Skelt plus more attack … then different voice, not Lukrasta. Kobalos warrior who shape shifts. Had to be Lenklewth. Grimalkin falls to her knees and drops her blades. Turns to Tom … Kill him, skeet stabs his leg, mage attacks, drops Starblade, darkness.

Wakes imprisoned, women brings food, three Kobalos warriors guard, drag to hall falloff Kobalos with images if Talkus and Golgoth. Mage asks him. What’s it like to be dead? What diid you see? Brags. I use tantalingi that is superior to scrying to know your plans and set a trap for Lukrasta, His plan to use Grimalkin and you. SO I set a trap by sending a champion to challenge … and draw Grimalkin and you into my trap.

I will enslave her for a couple of years the she will serve us. I will forge your sword into anew weapon and give you to Shaiksa so they can cut you many times for a slow death to avenge his brother. Shaiksa cuts Tom again. Then there is a noise … and a dagger emerges from Shaiksa’s throat and drops his dagger. Girl in dark green with brown belt holding Starblade. Alice. Throws Starblade to Tome catches, Alice disappears. Ran at mage fought, triumphant? … mage vanishes, human warriors arrive fight, follow, Grimalkin …

Prince Stanislau arrives with all troops. Jenny is safe.

Talk. Tell Gramlkin all learned .. 

The enemies large army will be here tomorrow .

Prince … says they need to retreat. 

Seeing Alice brings back all confusion.

Sound of pipes … sound draws Tom … PAN? No Alice green dress daggers in brown belt, pointy shoes. Good to see you Tom.

Where’s your friend Lukrasta?   (Poor Tom doesn’t make good decisions about Alice)

Dead. Killed by Kobalos. We made mistakes. Underestimated them and they were lying in wait. Lost him and you come back to me?

I came to help you … saved your life,  Didn’t I?

Here to try to save you all Tom.

Ain’t possible for all to escape.

Pan? On our side? He’s on the side of life. Wants a green world, hold back ice, …

That’s how it started and how I ended up with Lukraskta.

What do you mean?

Tells Tom about her trip to the dark to get the Delorous blade and the price she paid to leave.

Didn’t have any choice did I?

Then he told the price was to help Lukrasta and then the Doomdryte ritual he arrived and it all started. 

Grimalkin said you wanted to be with him.

I accepted the inevitable, Belonging to him enabled me to get close to help you and save you.

Kiss? sleep?

Only way.

He wanted to restore the Fiend to oppose the Kobalos. He would done anything. Squash you like an ant.

But you listen to someone who kisses you, holds you tight, who sleeps in your bed. See that? That’s why I did it.

He wanted to get the Fiends head. He would have killed all of you. I convinced him to let me go go alone. Nobody got hurt much except the boggart and hurt it more than I wanted.

The note in the tower said gone to dark never want to see me again. True?

My mark on my hip is a full moon ain’t no going back is there? I belong to the dark. Could be worse.

What could be worse?

I belong to the best of the dark. Earth witch who serve Pan. My magic comes from the ground.

He’s dead bond over. 

Sorry for him?

I wouldn’t be human if didn’t. They did terrible things to him, cut off his hands, sewed his lips …

You did terrible things to me … weakened Starblade, killed me … 

It’s true. Wanted to find another way, but wasn’t. Need to give people hope.

Your Mam would sacrifice me true?

Yes it’s true.

Winged creature? Tulpa.

Need to help the army. 

Jenny Alice , Grimalkin, 

Jenny. What will happen?

Army and varteki are coming use 18 pounders to attack and hold off while retreat. 

Battle. Alice mounts horse behind Tom. Fight, blizzard, no blizzard, white mist .. where are we? In the space between worlds. I need to be with the others. 

No more use here to ave those soldier boys. They will know we are here. Lenklewth will come after us. Then you can kill him. The Starblade Tom. Don’t drop it this time.

I did my best. 

Of course, but got to do better.

Could you use your magic. Yes, but need to save it to use to save the soldier boys.

That’s why you need to kill him.

Lenklewith arrives riding a vartek. Attack fight, stab Vartek, Alice uses sand, it spits poison on Alice, Tom puts tag under her tongue… Lenklewth nothing survives the poison, in moments you will join her. Tom swings to finish him off, but the vartek swallows him. Alice because he trained with pain and torture the vartek got revenge.

Tom. Despite all that has happened, still loves Alice, though still jealous, and not sure her explanation has convinced him.

Tom doesn’t know how to escape this place without Alice.

Alice vomits poison, get horse we need to leave, ride … back to fight … Here Tom this is the place … Leave me … NO. I might not survive. Coe here I need to tell you .. Kisses him. Bliss … It’ the truth. From moment I first saw you I knew we were meant to be together. I loved you then and when with Lukrasta, and I love you now. Believe me or call me a liar, that’s up to you, But it’s the truth.

Hear Pan’s pipes, Earth growls, hiss of steam, fire, rocks explode, Alice’s face is tormented, blood steaming from her eyes and nose. Nothing Tom can do to help. Then army stops. Alice exhausted.

Didn’t kill man of their army, but stopped them and our soldiers escaped across the river.

Helps Alice on horse and they retreat.

Grimalkin … work on Alice here.

Alice. Thanks for waiting Tom, staying beside me. 

I won’t ever leave you again. No need to Tom.

We achieved next to nothing. Had it not been for Alice it would have been worse.

 Travel to Prince Stanislaw Castle.

Alice recover. 

Jenny wants to leave before stuck here all winter.

Alice says will go to Chipenden to see they get home safely. Grimalkin wants to see her for when it makes a difference. Now. No.

Ask Alice to be kind to Jenny… spook … Ok.

On way back Jenny keeps falling behind, jealous of Alice with Tom … gets lost in blizzard, rescued by Kobalos (slither) hairdo mage wants to drink some of her blood, no harm, truth, just a little, and want to talk to your master Tom Ward. She remembers Grimalkin met a haizda mage and wonders if this is him?

Drinks … take … Tom ..

Alice grabs Jenny, Tom reacts to Slither … 

Alice. Tells Tom. kill him.

Jenny. No his name is Slither he has something to tell you.

Why blood? 

Only a sip, it’s my nature.

He saved my life.

Alice. Let’s see what has to say.

You talked to the dead mage Abuskai in the tower and asked for a contact. I am it.

Tom. Lenklewth is dead. Will that change the Triamvirate?

Don’t think so. 

Will yo fight your own people?

Already doing it. I am marked by the Shaiksa as you are. And Alice.

The haizda you killed was young and being hunted down to be exterminated. He escaped before he could learn impulse control to kill. Sorry it was so, and you acted under your rights to kill him.

Kobalos armies crossed the Shanna River and expanding their control.

Maybe we should go to the County. Staying away could protect it.

No. They know Grimalkin, Pendle witches, and will still come. 

Can you warn us? 

Yes through Grimalkin and the little witch. 

Travel on to Chipenden. Happy to be home. Plenty of work. Glad Alice is with him and put doubts behind.

Boy with note from Wood Plumpton arrives with note. Mam (Annabelle Grayson) being held on suspicion of killing her husband with witch craft.

Alice contacted by Grimalkin … battle is going bad. Need allies. G to Pendle …

Jenny and Tom go with the boy (Josh) … arrive … met constable, want to talk to Annabell, tells first need to see body, only fragments. Where die? By pond. Maybe rare fire daemon? close. Talk to Annabelle, not a witch. 

Jenny worries Tom will stop training her. Worries Alice doesn’t like her. Asks Tom to promise he won’t send her away. Tom says that’s easy.

Jenny asks if fire giant? … 

No. One of the old gods Golgoth froze him. I met him my first year when he was summoned by one of Gregory’s ex apprentice, Morgan, who got blasted and died the same way.

Why Mr. Grayson? Maybe warning or revenge because the County has caused damage to the dark.

Golgoth struck twice more.

Wake to pounding … Sense Kabalos … person at door ways enemies coming from the east.

Run to town, wake villagers and tell them to run … Tom I will buy time. Jenny go with them … She doesn’t, hides, watches. 

Tom fights three Kabalos with Starblade .. then dozens or 40 arrive, retreat to link stone … Kratch … boggart … whirl of violence, blood, Jenny, NO … all dead.

Tom walks toward Jenny. Not pleased. Never listen to me girl? Lucky Kratch listened to me and recognized you.

Thought slither and Grimalkin warn us. Things could be going very bad.

Alice returns. Uses mirror with Grimalkin. Tell Golgoth striking from Round Loaf at Anglezork Moor and mages are making it possible by using the space between worlds. Finds out at winter solstice they will try to bring him into the County permanently.

We need to be there when the mages open the portal, kill mages, then Alice use magic to close the portal. Dangerous. Need to get there before solstice thursday. Grimalkin be there then?

Alice tells Tom she can’t bear to loose you Tom.

Jenny all at once realizes one to light other to dark … and feels really sorry for them both.

Moor View Farm (where Alice live with her guardians for awhile) …

Arrive Winter house. Tom takes Jenny to check witches … Meg is back? Take about enemies here, tells he’s sorry about John Gregory dying … sees three Kobalos warriors hanging and asks if they are some of your enemies?

Tom tells Jenny story of Meg and John Gregory. She thinks history repeating … surely good can come of it. 

Meg offers to help confront Golgoth.

Arrive. Tell Jenny to wait outside and if not back by dawn fo back to Chipenden carry on with Judd. Asks. if John Gregory expected you to share in the danger? Mostly, yes, then I …

Grimalkin arrives. Weary .. the end is near unless we deal with Golgoth.

Lift flat stone to portal. Meg leads down tunnel ... arrive at pentacle where Morgan …

Alice cast cloak spell. 

Four Kobalos arrive. Meg, Grimalkin, Tom each kill one and fourth vanishes. Golgoth is coming.

Jenny Lay line? Boggart? No he would be killed instantly.

Lights out.

Five fools cower before me, five fools about to die.

Jenny relights lantern.

Slay you one by one, Ward will be the last.

Meg charges … struck down …

Alice steps in front of Jenny. Sends a bolt of light at Golgoth … Golgoth retaliates and Alice is covered with frost. 

Starblade … no magic, tries to move toward … 

Alice on knees ...

Grimalkin charges, hurls blades, turns totally white and shatters …

Music of Pan … appears as boy … frost on him.

Alice crawling back … music dies … Pan drops pipe … looks like a child frightened of the dark looking at Alice. Face framed in anger. Cries out … Boy of tears get up and fight, be a man not a boy shift your shape … Alice jumps on top Jenny, light becomes intensely bright … Tom looses consciousness ... 

Wakes in bed, Alice sitting beside him, in winter house. Brought you all back. Slept two days. 

Jenny? I shielded her with my body she fared better than you.

Gremalkin … waste! … No I would have been frozen first, she bought us time. 

Pan destroy Golgoth? No. Hurt him bad, but eventually heal. Pan needs to recover too. Big danger now. Talkus can intervene directly.

Meg? Maybe didn’t want to live anymore Now with John Gregory gone. Sad … Quiet. We both knew she dark he light … unspoken.

Alice. Closed the portal to keep Golgoth at bay. Still mages can use the space between worlds.

Go back to Chipenden… Kobalos could arrive at any time.

Tom trains Jenny … Work is plentyful with more dark. Hope she gets a chance to become a spook. Defend the County … that’s all we can do.


The Dark Assassin
Joseph Delaney
The Dark Assassin cover


Darkness … Who am I? Something stalking me.

Thorne? Suddenly … I am Grimalkin.

I am dead … terrible dark place. 

Now you can teach me child.

Predators, bell, hunt, fight, choke, killing ground, need blood for sustenance, 

I am still Grimalkin.

Thomas Ward and Alice talk. Alice goes to Pendle to unit witch clans. Malkins, Deanes, & Mouldheels against the north. Kobalos mages … Says be back in a week.

Bell … Bill Arkwright … I though you were dead. Worry he is not real. Has him tell his story, Greece, past, parents … Has Jenny us her abilities to try to verify and she says he seems to be have empathy for what he says.

Tom tells Bill what has happened since he was gone. John Gregory, Jenny, 

Grimalkin asks Thorne how she could betray Alice. Says she is sorry and she did eventually help her. Says Morwena was slain a second time by a skelt. Tells can return to life with the help of two gods. Decide to find Pan and ask… Note enemies Bony Lizzie, Beelzebub, Tusk, Mother Malkin  … no I killed hi a second time so he isn’t. Discuss why Grimalkin whole and Thorne has her thumbs.

Meet Bony Lizzie who says she will guide them to the portal. However, she takes them to Talkus who wants revenge since Grimalkin slayed his son Kretch, Thorne did a second time, helped Alice take your eyes, Being blind it attacks them and kills Bony Lizzie and they escape.

Find Pan. Negotiate … need to find second god. Says he will try. Until then stay in his tree, don’t kill anything, don’t leave and will be safe.

Comes back says found willing god. Hecate. Grimalkins enemy. 

Tom, Jenny, Bill set out to Mill to see Judd Brinswell who is the present Spook. 

Talk. Colder winter, Golgoth, rising Talkus, Balkai allicance of witches.

Reach mill. No dogs, Use key to get in. Skelt attack. Jenny comes to aid not Bill.

Find dog and Judd dead.

Dog. Blood arrives, growls, Bill tries to kill dog, Jenny stops … Tulpa.

Grimalkin listens to Hecate? Fears her demands. Caldron Crossroads. Never dine, or sip water, or feel sun. Skills be the same. Must return before sunrise or burn to ash.  Okay … NO those are the conditions not the price. The price is the blood of Thorne. Blood and her thumb bones and Beelzebub’s on her necklace. It is to hurt you Grimalkin as she is cast into oblivion. You couldn’t protect her on Earth and now not here. Let us confer.

Plot. Remember the bear? … Thorne stabs first, Grimalkin and her together Slay Hecate. Grimalkin drinks her bolls and feels a transformation. Takes thumb bones and offers them to Thorne.

Pan … why? I am an assassin it is my duty to kill Malkin enemies. And she demanded Thorne’s blood, which was unreasonable so I took hers. 

What now? Hecate visited Earth. Perhaps we can. We have slayed gods, perhaps that is meant to be. Who next? Talkus.

I’ll try … take me … let me first. Use caldron see destinations. Where first? Valkarky.

Take me. Need you here to protect the caldron and call out if need be. 

Goes. Finds she can take the shape of an orb and travel through matter. 

Arrives and kills Kobals torturing females.

Return. Teach Thorne shamanistic skill. Talk. How release slaves? Need an army of living humans to help.

Tulpa realizes it is and turns to ooze and washes away. Skelts outside … need to escape. Ask Jenny how she would. Use her idea. Go through tunnel. Skelts attack.

Grimalkin teaching. Pan arrives. Lukraskta lives. Kobalos mage have him and are torturing him and he doesn’t have long to live. Go and save him. His hands are gone, lips stitched, bewildered, get him and bring him back. 

Blood, Starblade, Jenny attacked by skelts , move on near water, … Jenny’s ankle is grabbed by a water witch, escape, but poisoned, travel along let lines incase need boggart. While traveling along ditch water Alice tells Tom not to go to Chipenden as they are lying in wait to ambush him. Come to Pendle and Malkin Tower. Tom knows Pendle well so he can get there through the tunnel.

Grimalkin and Thorne find the watchers serve the cauldron and they now will serve them. Which they do and tell them Tom Ward is in danger Shaiksa assassins are waiting in ambush. One will challenge him and three with bows and arrows will attack from behind. Grimalkin arrives shortly before dawn. Slays 1, sun comes up slays 2 blind. Returns.

Tom sees Shaiksa assassin challenge him. Doesn’t sense ambush. Says they will never give up. Starblade gives power. Tells Jenny and Blood to stay back. Fight blade grows in power and strength, dead in seconds. Jenny .. notices a body … who killed him. Her ankle is sore. Tom heads for village, houses burned, finds a mound of dead villagers and Kobalos warrior, Jeeny falls unconscious. Carries to healer Nora. She is out gathering herbs.  Stay, return, Jenny nor breathing. Smell of death… mirror Alice … Nora treats? Returns, says she died, tries to take starblade. Finds she is a Tulpa. Then she screams why did I kill my mistress. Poor Mrs. Hesheth. Searches for Jenny’s ghost. No Take her to church to bury. 

Grimalkin sees Hephaestus at an anvil foraging hands for Lukrasta. Pan brings Asclepius who has a rod with a snake coiled around and heals Lukrasta. Then sends him back to Earth, because he can only stay a short time in the dark. Where will he go? Talk to Alice?

Must attack and remove Talkus. We will lure him to my tower in Cymru, bind him, transport him through time to a deep volcano and seal him in it. Will need Alice to help with the magic. 

Grimalkin. Alice has no say? 

Lukrasta. She will see the need. Besides we are close friends. I am sure she will want to continue the relationship. 

Grimalkin.She is with Tom Ward you may misjudge …

Pan. I will command Alice.  

Lukrasta. Grimalkin you will have an important part. You will need to lure Talkus to my tower. I found a port from Tulkus’s lair to my tower. You will enter past ademon, seize part of Talkus’s soul, which will be connected t him as he is still absorbing it. Grab it and go. He will follow.

Lukrasta leaves to meet Alice.

Tom. Jenny’s death enrages him. He wants to reunite with Alice and make them pay. When he arrives at Malkin Tower and enters the tunnel he is ambushed. In the water he sees Alice’s face and she says help is on the way. He is attacked by a anti, then 7-8 more. Starblade … then Skelt, is he trapped? The door to the tower is now open. He goes through and locks it behind him. Checks the cells, finds a mound of dead witches. Worried Alice is among them. Searches … No.  What did it? Zanti, Kobalos, Balkai, Talkus?]Reaches chamber and it is full of witches. 

Mab is there and the new assassin Makrilda. Good to see you Tom. Where is my ugly sister Beth? Sorry … dead before I arrived. Where’s Alice. Lukrasta came and claimed her. 

Tom, enraged, no he is dead. You’re lying. Did she betray me? Gets into fight with Makrilda. Mab steps in. We are allies. Sorry. Lukrasta is alive, has silver hands, talked to Alice for along tie then both vanished without a word. 

Tom’s uncertainties arise. Did Pan command her? Was Lukrasta really a Tulpa? Or an illusion of the Kobalos mages or Balkai toke his shape?

Malkin coven decides to take back their village. 

Makrilda leds charge. Many dead. Tom joins, sense dark all in trouble can’t move … Kobalos … Balkkai? Tom forward, mage, glances at Starblade and attacks. My name is Kordo … dies and rest of theenemoes flee. Makkrilda and other Malkins race after them.

Tom heads to Chipenden, along let line. Worried Alice betrayed him. Stops at ruined farmhouse to sleep. Letters appear. Alice. Meet me at Samlesbry Bridge. We will go to Cymru and Lukrasta tower.  Was it her? A trap? Alice … no reply. Tupla? Bill? Nora? Had to go help if so.

Alice at bridge… Jenny’s dead … Sorry. Mab’s sister too.

What’s happening? Why did you leave with Lukrasta before I got there? Hug no kiss.

Walk… Why? Need to Destroy Talkus with tower … Alice explains plan.

Grimalkin … 3 gates of fire … portal … skelts … Talkus, Kobalos god … find him with his soul pouch, steal, run to Lukrasta tower… As pass  by cauldron Throne says can’t go yet. It’s still before sunset.  

Alice tells … Pan insisted … cut my heart … little choice.

Grimalkin helping tells abutter new abilities and her part in the plan and Lukrasta part.

Tom do you trust him?

Alice. Why not? He wants the something. We must ... Talkus wants to slaughter all make Hunans and enslave females.

Tom. Do you know if it is really him? Tells about Bill … Nora … 

Alice. If it wasn’t Lukrasta why would he make the plan? See a good reason to worry, but don’t think he could fool Pan a god. Ain’t possible. 

Arrive at tower. Eat … 10 minutes till sunset … Grimalkin arrives. There is a large silver cage to confine Talkus over a pit. 

Grimalkin enters cage with soul in bag. …I can’t leave the cage! What have you done? Free me Alice! It’s not my magic.

Lukrasta! What have you done?

Lukrasta appears smiling. Now I eliminate Grimalkin. She is your ally … I only need Alice. Together we will be more powerful than Pan and Golgoth. I will let Talkus end her.

Alice tries to free Grimalkin, grimaces, Lukrasta rage. Alice doesn’t see him grabber throat with his silver hand. Tom moves to attack him, but Lukrasta tells Tom to back up or he’ll cut her throat. Put down the sword. ROAR Talkus attacks Grimalkin. Tom lunges at Lukrasta and he and Alice vanish.

Need to help Grimalkin. May need her to find Alice. Jumps to cage stabs Talkus and Grimalkin attacks from the other side. Then stabs soul bag. Talkus in a frenzy bang against the bars and bends one. Grimalkin turns into an orb and escapes,  but too small for Talkus to escape. Tom jumps from cage. Grimakin catches. Chain snaps or is release and Talkus falls into pit. 

Tom yells Alice. Grimalkin find her. Grimalkin. Stay here I will be back.

Waits and waits… Grimalkin returns.

She is still here. Says she wants to speak to you. May be last time. 

Lukrasta? She appeared to be alone. 

Grimalkin. I must ask you two questions. Do you love Alice? YES truly.

Do you trust Alice? ….  you hesitate. Think it over and make up your mind. Take your time. My advice. Without trust love can not endure.

Tom. Asks, Grialkin, what are you going to do now? Hound the Kobalos back to Valkarky, free the slaves. Leaves.

Tom climbs to the top of the tower. Enters and Alice is waiting inside.

Smiling says Talkus is no more.

Where is Lukrasta? Can’t allow him to leave.

Killing him ain’t going to be easy.

Lend me the sword. Let me do it.

Tom stared. Thinking he would he helpless. Shakes his head. Says he can.

Can’t if you can’t find him. He won’t come out as long a you have the sword.

Give it to me and he will be here quickly. 

Thinks about what Grimalkin said.

Alice says …. Trust me?

He draws Starblade and held out hilt first.

She took it, stepped back, Lukraska appeared.

Lukraska. Fool boy to trust a witch like Alice putting his arm around Alice. We are closer than you imagine we belong together she did as I said and now will slay you with your own sword.

Alice stares at Tom with love.

Now you know the truth, she is ruthless, do anything to protect herself.

Tom. I have been a fool. Master was right never trust a girl with pity shoes. I didn’t lister, its over. I can’t give up. Tries to move to Lukraska but couldn’t move.

Lukraska. Kill him Alice. She steps between us and puts the sword at my throat. I couldn’t believe it. I tried to use time against her. Alices eyes widened as she sensed my attempt against her. Immediately as if to cut my head off the sword whistled toward my neck and then she stepped to the left missing me and the star blade sliced off Lukraska’s head.

Alice. Thought I was going to kill you Tom didn’t you?

I nodded.

It was the only way. Don’t you see Tom.

He was the fool to trust me

Tom. You really looked like you hated me and intended to kill me.

Alice. Had to be convincing. Make him believe. But, you didn’t trust me. Didn’t believe in the love we share. Sou you can go back to Chipenden alone.

Tom. She was right. I hadn’t fully trusted her.

Distracted by Starblade… Turning to dust. Gone.

Tom. Alice you do that? Magic?

Alice. There you go blaming me. Why would I? Maybe job done, touch Lukraska’s blood, price for killing him: who knows?

Tom. Before I could apologize she …

Ain’t coming back with you. Need to think. Not sure if we can be together anymore. A price to be paid.

Tom never so alone, no Alice, Jenny Spook, Mam … lost all 

Find a new apprentice?

Small lake. Bathe emerge and surface to 4 Kobalos waiting and Mage Balkai.

Little human you cause so much trouble.

We will get revenge slow and painfully. NO one will save you, my magic encloses us nothing can get in. Dig your grave. Take stake with smoldering point and stick through his stomach. Pass out. Wake to see second stake. Say there will be 7 for 7 son of 7 son. Then you will be allowed to die. Third, pain, scream, call Mam plead for life, mercy, Balkai spat in face. Kobalos warriors wouldn’t scream and beg. Stake 4, 5, 6, raving mad Mam … Help me. Darkness life flash before his eyes.

Mam you … What do you want? They’re killing be. You sound like a child. You’re a man now must find for yourself, help yourself, How? You are your fathers son, but also mine. Don’t hold back. Do what you need to save yourself. He feels fire within as they prepare the 7th stake. The pain increases, but not the pain from the stakes. Pain that ripples through his body as he becomes a lamia. His senses become super alert he can hear them and smell their blood calling him. He frees himself from the stakes as if they are thorns. Why did he wait so long? Thirst. Two ran, third charges, Tom flings him aside. Grabs the fourth and drains his blood. Attacks the assassin and drinks a mouth full of his blood and spits it out. 

Looks at his reflection. Can walk upright, face as human, part covered with green scales, mouth larger with two rows of sharp pointy teeth. Transformation was less than an hour. Something new from Mam and father's blood. Sleeps, wakes as human shape.

Gift or curses? Control me or me control it?

He was worried about Alice and the dark and now … 

Grimalkiin was an assassin, but I was a type of dark assassin too. A beast inside.

Arrives Chipenden … fire … feast on table … boggart as the ginger tomcat? Sitting on Alice’s knee.


After thoughts & analysis for Dark series


I was so enthralled by the interactions between Tom and Alice through out the two series. Always wondering, how it would play out in the long term. After I finished the first two series and looked to see if there was more of their exploits, so I might find out what might follow into their futures, I found the author moved to another series. And that series says they are brought into the story much further into their future. Therefore, I decided I would imagine what might be their immediate future after their return to Chipenden after the The Dark Assassin. Here is what I imagined might be the beginning of another series, dealing with the dark to the north, that would begin with a discussion between Alice and Tom when they are introduced into the plot.

Tom and Alice talk.

Tom. When I left I was devastated because I couldn’t completely trust you. I was afraid I would never see you. As I set out for Chipenden I had an urge or need to take off all my clothes and take a bath as I came to a pond. When I emerged I was captured by four warrior Kabolos and the mage Balkai. He had me dig a pit and tortured my by piercing me slowly with six smoldering rods. Saying they would give me mercy and kill me with the seventh. After the sixth my cries for mam were answered when she told me I was not a child any more, but a man and needed to, let go, and become who I would become as a product of my mam and father. A fire built within me and the pain was worse than the stakes. I completed my transformation and pulled the stakes from my body and emerged from the pit. Two warriors took off, I grabbed the third and threw him against the stones, and the fourth I was compelled to drink his blood. Then the mage Balkai was next. I began to drink his blood, but it was not as sweet anymore so I spat it out and controlled my rage. I slept and woke up as human again, healed.


What did you do Alice?

Alice. I thought about you and us.

How you were being told by Old Gregory not to trust me, by the Fiend that I would betray you, the same with Mab, her sisters, Lukrasta, and many of the other dark entities we met who were always trying to turn you against me. Even your mother told you to be wary, as I could serve either the dark or light. But, you always stood up for me. Saved my from the pit more than once. Even when you were torn between Old Gregory and me with your need to obey him so you could complete your promise to your mam to becoming a spook.

I learned it takes time Tom to develop trust, and your trust for me has grown.

You always did love me and you gave me the sword without hesitation. It was only after you gave me the sword that doubt crept back into you and you lost your trust of me.

Tom. Then why did you come back?

Alice. I thought about what Lukrasta said. That he totally trusted me, but his trust was not given by choice. He did not freely give me a choice to trust him. He thought he had power over me and was able to control me so that I had no choice. He trusted me because he thought I his under his total control and he could give that trust, because he thought I would do what he told me to do.

Too bad for him. Eh Tom?

So I came back because you and Old Gregory always said the future isn’t set. That we can change; and we have changed Tom. I have accepted more light and you more dark.

I know we love each other and eternal love requires trust.

However, I figured that empowering people with choice can create doubt, doubt as to what choice will be made, which destroys trust. However, the closer we get, we learn to understand what each other believes, desires, and how each might achieve it. The more we understand each other, the greater we will trust, because we know the choices the other will make.

It is growing together in harmony that will sustain our love and continue a desire to build greater understanding, as we work together so there will be more light on Earth. In doing so, the trust for each other will also grow and our love can be eternal.

Are you willing Tom?


Tom and Alice decide to harmonize and work with Grimalkin and Thorne, Slither and Jenny (Slither and Jenny have secretly shared time since their first encounter, Slither, secretly protecting her. Fore saw her death if he didn’t intervene. He created a Tulpa, replaced her with it, which Tom buried, which is why he never saw her soul, and Slither treated her poison and they are together. Will they become the new beginning of a north and south union without female slaves and extermination of human males? How will all three groups continue to work together?



The Last Apprentice supplements


The Last Apprentice: A Coven of Witches
Joseph Delaney
A Coven of Witches cover




The Last Apprentice: The Spook's Tale and Other Horrors
Joseph Delaney
The Spook's Tale and Other Horrors cover




Brother Wulf trilogy
A Spook's Apprentice Adventure


Brother Wulf: A Spook's Apprentice Adventure
Joseph Delaney
Brother Wulf: A Spook's Apprentice Adventure cover

The main character, Brother Beowulf, is a scribe for Spook Johnson who travels to Chipenden to ask Mr. Ward to save Mr. Johnson, who has been captured by a witch. 

Tom will not leave till morning so Wulf sleeps in the apprentice room and discovers William Johnson, & Jenny names among the names of apprentices on the wall. Also hears Tom and Alice arguing about Tom leaving. (Tom - It’s my duty to go. How can I refuse? … Alice - it’s your duty to stay with me, Tom) 

Leave in morning. Tom goes back hug Alice.

Being followed by Malkin witch assassin Makrilda.

Talk about Johnson. Vain wants Wulf to write about his exploits. Some people don’t like him, they think he imprisons some innocent people. 

How you become his scribe? I was a novitiate monk. I saw ghosts, dad died, mother thought I could become a monk to keep the devil away.

Wulf starts his story about in the abbey. Being reprimanded for using his imagination and changing the stories be copied so he was told to go with Johnson and write his story and to discover all his secrets for his dark practices to use against hime to rid the county of spooks by burning them at the stake. 

Mr. Ward … so …? 

Wulf, I have changed my thinking and no longer want to be a monk. 

Night approaches … Wulf tired so Tom decides to stay at an inn. Need to sleep well so you will be rested when we group against your witch. WE? Want me to help?

Talk about being a spook. Book The Legend of Spook Johnson. or … The Legend of Spook Ward? Jenny died by water witch … Wulf tells about praying and Saints help him sometimes. 

Sleep Wulf wakes .. Ghost … Help me! … Pray to release … Released .. Then human shape? Demon … Leave me … Laugh .. That’s no way to treat a friend. You did well boy …  Wulf waits for the pain. Instead a vision … County military attack Mr. Ward. Blade buried in his stomach and dies in agony.  Demon … know you know what could happen, you can change it. That’s my gift. 

Morning… Mr. Ward notices, pale, bruise, tired? Leave talk … Tell me about the witch. Men approach as in vision … Squire Anderton … you are trespassing! A man’s life is at stake, need to cross. Fight. Tom Knocks him down. Helps up, goes for dagger in boot, Wulf warns, Tome reacts… Wulf shudders, narrow escape with the help of a demon! Tom … how know? Glint? Really… thanks probably saved my life.

Call me Tom .. I’ll call you Wulf.

Tom … tell me about Johnson … Does he get many requests? 

Yes, but only specializes in witches. Keeps them beneath his house in pits and cells, pays old man (Henry Miller) to care for them when gone. 

Tom … Maybe we should check on them? 

Wulf … Shouldn’t go to rescue Johnson? 

Probably two scenarios: killed right away or saving for some reason.

Tell me the story… I was writing, he slept late as had two bottles of wine, loud knock at back door, talked with person, came back and said there is a witch to deal with, first, fix a big breakfast… During breakfast he tells me the story of the first witch he dealt with. 

… I was apprenticed to Old Gregory, I was captured by a powerful witch, she turned me into a pig, I killed her familiar and stabbed her through her heart. Today you will see my classic procedure. Take good detailed notes.

Go tell Henry Miler to care for witches. Run into three towns men, one upset because his wife (Jenny Chichester) was in his pit. They attack, he fends off the attack, wins, never again or … left

Tells me witch to face is an incomer. And I will be a stalking horse. Meaning I will go into the abandoned town and find her, then first sign of trouble he will be there.

I go into the abandoned town and into Batley’s General store. It was stocked with goods and there was a girl with red hair. 

Looking for a witch? This way.. out into street… sleeping in rocker, go get your master before she wakes… 

I go up the hill to tell Johnson. 

He goes down with staff and chain, but she was waiting… and she was the same as the picture in the book I was given to copy at the monastery. The story about an evil witch slain by a brave prince. She ran at him, he bound her with his silver chain, carried her back to Salford. 

Talk about strange girl with red hair and situation … Maybe should go back?  Don’t tell m how to do my business … Maybe should go back and tell people how you protected them? Okay Tomorrow….

Knock at door. Boggart … stone chucker … Help! I only do witches. 

Wulf goes with (Laura to help Bobby).. 

See boggart, pray to saint to open door, get child, leave, go to Laura’s sisters, 

Go back to Spook Johnson’s, house furniture wrecked, bars on pit bent, witch escaped and took Johnson with her.

Didn’t know what to do… Think maybe need help, Tom Ward? Sleep, demon visits me, says I need help. Go get Tom Ward at Chipenden.

You did what you could, save child, left Johnson to get help.

If you lost your faith and don’t believe in god, then why do yo pray? Because it works.

Tom goes to see witches. Talks to Jenny Chichester holds her hand and discovers she is benevolent a witch, take her home and come back. 

Where is old man (Henry Miller)? Goes, bring, back , clean cells…

Tom and Wulf talk … monk for a year, 14 years old, scribe for Johnson six weeks, imagination, see ghosts, 

Going to make a deal with Gwen Raddle, second chance if she will be bait.

Back to village, Gwen to go down, tell escaped, give Johnson a piece of your mind, leave and meet back with us to report … She goes down … terrible noise and then her body parts rain down … Tom writes a message, gives to Wulf tells him to go back to Johnson’s and wait if not back by morning take it to Alice in Chipenden. Sure? What can she do? Not sure, didn’t leave onset of terms, I left, walked and prayed for him..

Waited till noon, about ready to leave when Old Henry arrives with Brother Halssall (monk in charge of novices), Quisitor, search me, find letter for Alice.

In trouble working with two spooks, letter, … finds was sent to spy on Johnson to collect information to find him guilty so they could burn him … Over days Wulf is interviewed bye a torturer and executioner to tell all the dark practices of the spook he knows. You know nothing about dark practices? Back to cell tomorrow morning …. Burning one of the witches.

Morning taken to rack… steel rod, brazer… show jar with teeth, another with eyeballs, then told to read the letter to Alice.


Tells Alice he’s sorry, bitten off more than chew, thought duty to protect county, but now realize wrong, his greater duty was to you, don’t try to help, something from the dark, new, dangerous, powerful entity, put yourself and our child first, I was wrong so don’t follow in my footsteps. Love … Tom

Quisitor … this is evidence that damns you as you were returning to her lair, and you are hiding more darkness … dark spells, where Ward is, what happened to him? … 

I told you I know nothing of … I left him … 

We searched the village he is not there …

We will begin our true interrogation tomorrow, pray tonight.

Cell, Brother Halsall, drink, sleep, wake, pale yellow light on ceiling I knew so well, faceless demon … Leave me! 

But you need me …If you survive one more day, you will be free and beyond the cruel priests, A beast with two heads is coming to save you. To be saved you must do two things. Use your wits: 1. survive tomorrow’s trials 2. On the following day convince the priest to take you outside the walls and among the trees. There the beast can save you.


Use your imagination.

Dragged from my I cell and before strapped in a chair I call out … I am ready to confess!

Confesses … tells nothing in books as they memorize spells, want examples, … like witch glamour only make look larger and ferocious to terrify so can bind with silver chain, makes up lies after lie, says needs bone charm, secret cache, take to … tomorrow? No now. Go worry, rain drenching, hold cup in abandoned farm. Mid morning go to farm with stone-chucker. 

I’d betrayed both Spook Johnson and Ward by giving evidence to torture and burn them both.

Pebbles falling, safer if I go alone. Goes in, a boulder hits Quisitor (father Ormskirk)on head. Escape out back door and run. 

Follow, chase, Brother Sabden threatens pull teeth, long execution, continue, mist, hear pipes, see beast with two heads.

You must be Brother Beowulf … sit, eat, don’t worry Father Ormskirk is dead, those who follow are befuddled and lost, you are safe.

How do you know?

I am Alice. Been watching you. Tell me what was in the letter from Tom.

Talk … tell all … 

Go to village.

Alice checks it out, Gives Tilda to Wulf to hold, then go back up hill.

Alice explains to Wulf, that she needs him to leave this world … Go to Hollow Hills, underworlds, where Johnson and Tom are being held. Been there already when went into shop … Will give you somethings to help, but can’t say it won’t be dangerous. Gives a key, (Old Gregory’s twin) pair of feathers (exeunt spell of undoing), a silver dagger. Just get them back and I’ll do the rest.

Enter shop as before with little red headed girl. Talk … looking for my two friends .. Take me to them?

Perhaps, First ell me your name.   Brother Beowulf .. \she goes outside and heads toward Salford… or an underworld version of it? Head to Spook Johnson’s house. … In the cellar. 

Tom in one cell and Johnson in another … asleep. 

Footsteps on stairs … Grum .. get in cell be safer … locks in.

Child now you are in a meat safe too. 

Spider like creature, says eat bigger ones, drags each out … 

Wait, use key to escape, follow them at a distance, to the church.

Inside steps down to a huge crypt, a trapdoor, another, pray to Saint Anthony (lost things and causes) 

He answers .. do not take left path to darkness, always right.

Smell of blood, giant on a chair, dead, spider like creatures feeding (brain guzzlers Hell’s familiar) too busy feeding to notice me … 

Next room Spooks bound to chairs with a familiar ready to saw open Tom’s head.

Rushed and attacked it with silver dagger, then free Johnson, then Tom… grab hold so all three touching, separate feathers, bright flash of light, outside church.

Johnson there, but no Tom. Alice comes down from hill. 

Alice face show anguish, 

Wulf, sorry, I’ll go back … can’t till night fall.

Johnson … says talk to Tom, said he told you not to come, but said you would probably ignore him. 

He knows me so well.

He also said I needed to learn not all witches are evil.

Yes. You should learn try hard to follow Tom’s advice.

I’ll do more than that, I will go with the boy.

Wait for night, Alice catch rabbits, eat, sleep, Wolf hold Tilda, surprised by Brother Sabden and seven killers, Johnson escapes, tie and gag Alice, tie Alice and Wulf to stake, torment Alice with threat to burn Tilda, Johnson attacks with staff, kills all.

Alice gives feathers to Wulf and he and Johnson they enter the shop. Find their staffs, and find two daggers and a longbow. Offers Johnson apprenticeship, but says he doubts he would be good at it. 

Back through tunnels … tone steps up … Red sky, temple like in Greece, dark shadow in sky, A witch flying on a broomstick?

Johnson use bow to shoot flying witch, finishes her off on the ground with blade in staff … Terrible noise and ugly familiar crawls our of skull and darts away, but stab it. What?

Go into temple and on throne is girl with red hair in over sized purple dress. 

What want priest? 

Tom Ward

What do you want Spook?

Mind your manners girl. Show us where Tom Ward is …

Take care Spook, this is my domain where anything is possible. We have met before foolish man, Johnson head becomes pig like, he snorts, and drops to ground… 

Girl changes to a woman and says she is a goddess. 

Drives pear into Johnson … this is punishment for destroying my creature.

Why does the Abbot, Qusitor, now this goddess wish to destroy the spooks?

Still want to meet the other spook?


Hooded man approaches … Tom Ward … kneels before the goddess bewildered. sHe jerked her hand up and his skull lifts away, brain gone, and an ugly little familiar.

We arrived too late.

Poor Tom, Alice, … 

He didn’t deserve this …

What did he deserve?

Don’t worry little monk, things aren’t always what they seem.

Tom’s face changed until it wasn’t him, but Mr. Batley the shopkeeper.

Follow me, want to see Ward?

Three chairs, Tom on one. No eyes, lips, mouth … 

Why kill Mr. Batley? He became an old man and no longer attractive to me. I lived in the village long ago, kept my needs in check, thenBatley realized I was possessing his friends and neighbors …

The child? I saw a picture in a child’s book and made her that way. All life is a narrative… Crafted the witch ..

Well you can use the feathers to leave … 

Only if take Spooks with me.

You can if Alice Deane gives me what I want. … Her child … If she gives me her, Then everyone can go free. I require her exquisite blood from her father and mother…

Now do my bidding or die … torn to bits by my pets. Magi each was once a human king wielding malignant powers over humans. Oh. Tell her I am Circe.

My hand was shaking so bad I couldn’t reach … she saw me, laughed, hisses, pointed her finger, flash, pain, darkness.

She lost patience and sent me back to Alice.

Talk … 

Circe … powerful, cruel, dangerous, plays with humans often turning them into beasts.  I could never surrender Tilda, even though I love Tom more than life, I couldn’t, a mother’s first duty is to protect her child… ain’t it so?

May be another way to save them. 


Use mirror … Grimalkin. Can you help me? My need is desperate.
Grimalkin I will do what I can … Farewell, I will seek you out in one year and one day from tonight. If you live, we will conclude our business. 

And if not? 

I will make the best provisions I can.

Sorry Wulf you must go back to the underworld for a fourth time. We will free Tom and Mr. Johnson. I will do what must be done.

Did she really intend to swap … ?

Circe will come to us. Stay behind me at all times, do whatever I tell you at once without question, don’t try to interfere or change the outcome in anyway. Our lives will depend on it. Understand?


Tom and Johnson were at the base of the throne, bags and staff beside them, three cats lay beyond, 

Alice, Wulf, stay close to Tom.

Circe, you are wise to accede to my wishes. Both are free to leave with you.

Alice Who are you to covet my child … ? … walks to Circe, says to Spooks, be awake be vigilant, stand together, as Alice offered Tilda Tom lifted his staff with anger. Too. Late, Circe had Tilda, Alice was walking back to us with arms held wide. Time slowed. 

Circe shrieks, two long green talons gouge at her eyes and face wraps itself around her inflicting terrible wounds.

The Magi roar and leap. Alice wraps her arms around us and we are back ..

ALice … we need to leave now, she may follow.

Tom where is our child? 

A girl Tom, her name is Tilda?

With Grimalkin. She gave me the changeling.

You trust her don’t you Tom?

Well it Ain’t safe. Circe ain’t done with us.

Have to be so long. I haven’t seen her.

Would if you stayed for her birth.

Not fair.

Ain’t it? How do you think I feel?

Need to sort out Circe … 

Wulf. You were brave and did exactly as I asked. 

We aren’t safe. She can’t leave her world, but she is able to send others after us. I got to find a way todealwith her before Grimalkin gives back Tilda.

Go to Johnson’s house, Alice cleans and bandages his shoulder, he is furious about the damage the Quisitor’s monks inflicted, but leaves most things and sets off with us to Chipenden.

Camp …. 

Tom. Wulf you are welcome to come with us and be my apprentice. 

Johnson. Wait a minute> I have already offered.

Tom. Tells Johnson ab0out spooks house at Anglezarke Moor with water witches.

Alice. Will Johnson you must choose what’s best and Wulf must choose too. 

Wulf. Thinks no choice… Tom, but … everything changed.

Howl Magi coming … 

Tom. I must deal with it. Too far from let line. 

All go north. Wulf take my staff and bag. 

Alice. Wulf, hang back don’t interfere. After he may be a bit confused so please, he won’t hurt you, just tell him who you are, call his name, and he’ll follow you back. Could you do that for me Wulf? 

Screams and Magi body parts … then a cruel eyes with red slits, huge body feline, black white stripes. Deadly fangs … attacked by two other Magi, fight, bloody, creature back somewhat human with green scales, needle sharp teeth with black boots, one with string… Truth finally pierced my befuddled brain. Tom

 Alice… Tom it’s me Wulf, follow me to Alice… 

We walked toward Chipenden. Wash in stream. Back to form of Tom … 

Tom. Wish you hadn’t seen that, let me explain… Mam lamia … 

Catch up to Alice and Johnson …

I knew I would never write my name on the wall. Can’t trust to be with Alice and Tom … My stick demon returns. This time it has a face. Circe.

Circe. I have enjoyed tormenting you. I sent you to lure Tom into my clutches. … My little puppet … I would have let you go, but now there is no forgiveness. After I slay the spooks and Alice, I will slay you. Then I will get the child.

Then the pain began.

Alice. Avaunt! Be gone! … Then a bright light … from Alice. Circe was gone. I Was in pain, Alice put her hand on my forehead and it was gone immediately.

Talk … 


Alice. You’re always blaming yourself. Ain’t necessary. Only thing did wrong was not telling about your visits when we first met, but that wouldn’t have changed anything. Tom would have gone, because of his sense of duty and I would have followed, because that is the way we are. 

I will give you something to keep Circe away when you go with Will Johnson.

Sorry for not choosing Tom. Don’t be. You might change your mind later. Everyone’s allowed to do that.

Ready to leave.

Alice. Wulf, you have made a mistake, I won’t ask for you reasoning, but I have my suspicions. Ain’t a total disaster. Just keep your wits about you. Change your mind, Tom will … 

Need to watch out for the Bishop … Here is a mirror … I know you are still scared magic, but … just breathe on the glass, think of me or call my name. We’ll try to help you. Promise?


This is about you. I don’t think you are a 7th son of a 7th son. You got what it takes to be a spook, but you have more. You pray to Saints and they sometimes respond. Spooks can’t do that. Good to know who we are. It stops us losing ourselves …

Last. Don’t let Johnson bully you.


Johnson. I am going to specialize in witches. Wander the county … We’ll head to Pendle .. I’ll kill the Malkin witch assassin first. 


Wulf's Bane: A Spook's Apprentice Adventure
Joseph Delaney
Brother Wulf: Wulf's Bane cover


I was a spook’s apprentice and my master, Will Johnson, was using me as bait. 


Review historic information, Brother Wulf, Tom, Alice Tilda, Circe, … 

Brother Beowulf moving along a path by the marsh on the way to Monk Hill, praying to Saint Raphael. A big white bird, something pushes Wulf away from the water. Witch attacks, he jabs at her with his staff and Spook Johnson attacks and kills her.

See that big white bird? I wonder if I killed Morwena? I’ll leave her here as a warning. … Write that up tonight, boy. … The Legend of Spook Johnson. The story of my life. 

That night Wulf hears a noise under his bed. It would be the first of many.

A few months later, Johnson is out and Wulf is reading.

 A triple rap at the door. Tom Ward.


More history and recent events.

Johnson returns. 

Talk … 

Someone has informed the Caster Quisitor a spook was operating around the Marsh. 

Johnson. Says going to Pendle to end the clans there.

Tom. Suggests he go to Billinge village to sort out a clan of witches there first.

Tom talks to Wulf about his training. 

Says it is mostly about witches and writing the book about spook Johnson.

Tom gives him a notebook to write about what he learns as an apprentice … 

Tom. Tells worried about Alice trying to increase her power to deal with Circe, afraid will lose her and Tilda.

They set off to Chipenden.


Johnson. Tells Tom when time to deal with Circe, he would be glad to help, just ask.

Agree in a year Wulf will spend time with Tom to learn about Boggarts, ghosts, and other dark …

More noises under Wulf’s bed at night. Worried same noises in a different house (Chipenden), is a bigger problem that follows him … Johnson says it’s his imagination …

Talk Tom, Alice, … 

Alice. You are not a 7th son … you are something new, but don’t know for sure, … Like to help, but can’t now. Still have silver dagger, feather, & mirror? Promise if you need help, you’ll call?


Read John Gregory’s Bestiary… Find out more about Pendle witches, need to change Johnson’s mind about visiting there.

Before set out for Billinge, Tom asks Will Johnson to come back to Chipenden after done at Billinge. He Agrees.

Leave. Wulf notices being followed. Sleep, wake and an abhuman says. Let’s see what the fat ones made of little human. Fight, break his leg and ties Wulf up and tells him he will save him and off they go.

Travel to cottage, Mother Martha, gives him a sack, when lowered me to the floor I could see the sky and it looked like the underworld of Circe … her servant? Was I to suffer …

Told me nowhere to run, so I will untie you, if you do, my master will kill you, you will be safe inside, … It wasn’t Circe’s underworld.

A tall thin giant (Hrothgar). Empty you pockets … Looks over everything, keeps mirror, dagger, and gives back feathers and notebook. We will talk tomorrow.

Abhuman was like a statue. 

Sleep, wake, eat, call Saint Quentin, arm with key click, I open door and outside is … 

Hrothgar. Waiting, Brother Beowulf … sit. 


Tells name, says heard praying, Saint didn’t open door, you did with your imagination. You have great powers, but must be trained properly. Some call  us Tulpamancers, I prefer Tulpar, and we create Tulpas. 

Do you want me to train you?

My master needs me. I need to return.

He is safe now.

You will be a Tulpar wether I train you or not, but without me you will die. If you survive you will be free to return and return to whatever life you wish …

Is the abdomen a Tulpa?


Does it know?

No. The moment it does it will collapse. 

However, there are a bound Tulpa to which the rule doesn’t apply.

Come with me to the bridge. Everything within the moat is protected. Outside, you would be slain and devoured. My servant protected you … They guard my domain, tulpas I created for that purpose. Now I will take you to my Temple of Dreams where you can learn to control your imagination. If you fail, you will die.

Hrothgar creates a tulpa as a kitten. Notice the candle. While the flame burns the kitten is sustained by my imagination. When the flame goes out, it will fade unless you can keep it alive.

I fail, kitten fades.

Talk. Feather? Protection? From whom?  Mirror? Vanity? Communicate? Perhaps you will tell me when you trust me.

Try kitten again.

Fail again.

Sleep, scratching under bed … 3rd place? Louder, bed shake, hand reach out, grab, pull me, … help!

Hrothgar. Avaunt! Begone!

You’ve made a terrible mess of the floor.

I didn’t do it.

Yes, you did. Your situation is worse than I thought. It is why I brought you here. It is a Tulpar’s Bane.

What can I do?

Create a tulpa to defend you and kill it.

Which of the tulpas you create might defend you?

Practice creating it …  sleep, arm appears, call Raphael, uses knife to cut, but doesn’t work. 

Hrothgar … Avaunt! Begone!

Practice …  month, sometimes works sometimes not.

Hrothgar tells Wulf he needs to leave for awhile and he is on his own.

I decide to not sleep and stay in the Temple of Dreams and wait. Hand appears, call Raphael, appears, slices arm, and then suddenly I am looking out through Raphael’s eyes and feel the weapon in my hands. I stabbed twice, blood, then I was back in my body. All gone, only hole remained, Success. 

Hrothgar enters. 

Never left? 

Right. Let’s eat.

Is it over?


 Did I really become … 

Perhaps. It is rear, but a splinter of a soul can enter a bound tulpa. 

How is Spook Johnson? .. It was cruel to break his leg.

I know, but I knew he is strong and stubborn and had to stop him, hoped in the long term it would be good for him. At the moment he is coping and back working as a spook.

Part of me wanted to return, but part wanted to practice … 

Talk about kinds of tulpas … gristles, wraiths, 

Practice … then feel time to leave … Tell Hrothgar about Circe, and Alice without mentioning her name. 

Well you are welcome to comeback for more training, but don’t wait too long as my life is drawing to a close.

Enter world, spring, Chipenden, 

Butcher … don’t I know you?

Here to see Tom Ward.

No one’s seen him for a year .. Things are bad. Bishop’s Quisitor took refuge in Caster Castle. Careful, boggart still in garden.

Bell on ground. House abandoned? Staff and hooded gown in corner, table set…  Tired so go to sleep. Wake Grimalkin at foot of bed…

Grimalkin. After Abhuman took you, Tom and Alice looked for you for months, where have you been?

How long has it been?

14 years.


Share his story …

Tom Alice … Alice attacked Circe in her lair, almost, but won, but had to retreat, a month later again and damaged Circe very badly, not a victory, but bought time for about ten years they lived as a family. Then Circe sent her creatures agains the house. The boggart was defeated, I took Tilda again, Tom and Alice fought and disappeared. 


Maybe or maybe Circe has them. Wants Tilda, if she grows to adulthood, she will be very strong.


Searched for you, then dealt with some witches, tried to deal with Pendle clan, I had to rescue him, now at mill dealing with occasional witch.

Should I help him?

No. Circe would know. Go back to Hrothgar and train. I may visit you soon, need to make provisions for Tilda.

Grabs Tom’s staff, and leaves, go to Hrothgar, arrive creature meets, you waited too long, he is dead … Gives letter.

It will be difficult, but you can use my library to learn and develop your abilities. Leave you my possessions and underworld and the gatekeeper’s cottage, you will need provisions, there is a chest of coins, get provisions from King’s Moss, Always use the cottage as it will protect you from being followed, all that was mine is now yours, please use your abilities to make this world a better place for all.

I could stay here, but alone? 

Explore house, find door without knobs… try to open can’t, very cold, … leave it.

Leave for supplies, note in cottage from Grimalkin … urgent to speak… go to town .. question why here, looking after cottage … start back see Grimalkin and… Tilda?

Grimalkin … need to ask your master if she can stay with …

Tilda, I will not hide again … together we can defeat her..

Not yet, you need to develop power more.


Hrothgar, dead, learn from library …

Ok. Can learn together, good company, Alice can stabilize time… 

Show house to Tilda … look at door, Alice tries to open, can’t, strong magic, best leave it.

Likes Hrothgar’s  room and bed, feel he had good sleep in it will be for her too.

Tilda cook, herbs? No. We’ll get some tomorrow. What tell butcher? Say I’m your sister, he won’t be a problem for me.


Past tulpa - Bill Arkwright, mom dad, Lukrasta, 

Study together, library, make tulpa, Raphael, if he thinks he is a saint, wouldn’t be very useful. Book The Difficulty of Choosing a Bound Tulpa by K. Hrothgar.

Read take notes … spook and tulpa .. flip book. 

Read more about bound tulpa, Tilda book how to prolong … Read, swap books, compare notes. Now take break and go to village

Argue with butcher, Tilda put in place with magic, shop more, see small stout grey haired women staring … argue about treating butcher mean and magic… 

Eat talk about making tulpa, kind, wraith, fly, sky Wulf?

Practice, three days, then do, but how be into places at once? 

Sleep dream skyWulf see Johnson and witch ready to ambush, attack with talons, wake blood on hand … Talk to Tilda …

She goes to town.. remember to use cottage.

She didn’t come back… go check. See her bound and gaged by butcher and wife. Then get on horse, ride to get Quisitor.

Go back to underworld … dawn go back … mid afternoon lone rider arrives … later leaves with Tilda stumbling behind heading for Blackburn. On trail arrive at 9 dead monks no marks on their bodies, among them the Quisitor. Now he was heading for Salford … Circe? 

Nightfall. Sleep, change to skyWolf … see Circe’s servant with three fingers, thumb, all with sharp yellow talon, green scales, eating rabbits. Tilda looks up and smiles.

Wake in morning, creature and Tilda gone. 

Follow two days, catch as they rest, change shape, cut ropes, turn back, escape together, stream, hear rider behind… now I have you both. Chase, attack, Tilda tries spell, but not enough, attack her with sword I step in front, struck with sword, turn to attack Tilda, change to Skywolf, attack, grow larger, attack tear rip grab fly aloft and drop , dead before hit ground…

Tilda crying, goes to Wulf, body with skull split open, he is dead. I land on a tree branch as SkyWulf?

Tilda buries Wulf. When done she looks up and sees me for the first time… holds out hand palm up, How is this possible? 

Head back to underworld and entered. 

Fly, feed, bring back rabbit, library, read? Yes, learn to fly, return …

Tilda, It’s as I suspected your soul was divided between two bodies and when the rider killed you all of it transferred there … pointing to my tulpa. So where does the human end and tulpa begin? What you have to do? Create a tulpa… 

Raphael appears. Then fades. Now create another … Wulf for yourself… 

Angered I Fly off. What am I doing?  Like Tom shape-shifting? … Think … Now I knew I was wrong. I should have become his apprentice. So I concentrated and did it … faded … Days pass, finally Wulf. Then fades, weeks later could, but not be both simultaneously and when I change from Wulf to skyWulf everything in my pockets falls to the floor. Weeks later could keep Wulf form, decide to go for provisions. Go and return okay. When back argue about if Tilda is ready to attack Circe.

Morning, breakfast, mention might be okay to fly over Circe’s underworld to check it out. 

Head to Salford, Kersal Abbey …  then head to Salford. Surrounding farms are abandoned. Then see people going down a hill 13 prisoners and 4 guards. Food for Circe and other servants. Swoop down and kill all four. Change … go north to Salford … wait to see if others would follow to recapture them … leave … later 3 large winged figures pursue me. Resembled dragons. Turn go toward them, dive under, follow me in single file. Kill two, then overconfident when third attacks, rips open side, change to human form, aside dead dragon, attack, change form to Raphael fly with sword kill third. Fly home, fall unconscious on floor … Tilda, nurse back with herbs and magic … chicken soup … See Tilda and understood how Tom fell in love with Alice. I owed Tilda my life. 


Tell whole tale in detail. 

Tilda. Wulf, you kept your promise and stayed outside Circe’s lair, and all you did I would … Yes you’re still fit to be let out alone. Then she handed my a letter from Grimalkin.

Alice Deane and Tom Ward are alive. Meet … Grimalkin

Go … Meet Grimalkin … with … Thorne. 

I know where they are. Circe rules the dark and is stronger than ever, since the Fiend, Talkus, … 

Grimalkin and Tilda go 


Wulf asks Thorne, what chance?  Grimalkin and I are slayers of gods, we killed Hecate and will slay Circe. 

How? Story … 

I was impressed and terrified.

Trust? Annoyed. 

Tilda, Yes I don’t blame you … She’s concerned, since you are not human that you might be more vulnerable to Circe’s magic. 

The feathers …

Only work for humans.

Surprising Circe hasn’t found you …  

Grimalkin knows of your power and afraid you could be turned against us. And you need to think about your own destruction …

I am not afraid of death.

There are things worse than death. Circe’s slave. 

Full moon is when Grimalkin is at her strongest, then we will strike Circe. Stay here. Promise? 

Yes. Where are they? Best not tell you. 

Go back to library … wait … for all of three hours, then followed Tilda north. She was heading to Chipenden. Was Grimalkin watching me from the dark?

Exact precise time of the full moon two silver orbs approach … Grimalkin and Thorne enter garden of Chipenden house. 

I enter garden hear winning of Kratch. I enter house… noone, upstairs noone … cellar? Maybe the assault on house came from underground? Go downstairs see door? They passed it and I was about to follow them, but I touched it, very cold, looked into its reflection and saw an old man in grey with dozens of keys … call Saint Quentin?  I reached out again and sensed gears and cogs moving. Then I pressed slightly and it opened. There was a single prisoner Hrothgar. Alive attached to ice by silver chains and silver nails. He had a star symbol with a letter on his forehead.

Sorry all this is my fault. Long before we met I was in Circe’s power. I would not have willing broke Johnson’s leg, Circe made me. I had to preserve your life so Grimalkin would put Tilda into your keeping … I tried to help you in little ways. When you rescued Tilda she tore away the magic that hides her place so Grimalkin could find her and would come here with Tilda and she would fall into her trap.

When you left me Circe summoned me and forced me to destroy my tulpar, brought me here, The pentacle on my forehead and chains contain me. 

In your books you lied about never being a bound tulpa? 

No I wrote that many years ago, before I found the courage to … 

I reached to free him. 

NO! I can only be released by Circe or her death. Flee this place. 

I can’t leave Tilda. Isn’t there anyway I can shield my self from Circe?

Maybe one I never got a chance to try. Maybe if you keep changing your shape … 

I follow on. Another door they had passed. I check it out. Tom and Alice. Could they be released or …? Then I saw it, a green shoot seeming to extend toward Alice. I felt we should release them, so continued down tunnel, … Grimalkin Thorne … Where is Tilda?

Circe’s servants snatched her. Let’s go get her. We can’t go any further, look … the sun.

How?  Circe … time? … 

I can go. It could be your death or Circe’s power to weaponize you. Look we don’t need not fight her alone. Tom, Alice, Hrothgar .. I opened their doors… Grimalkin starts back I go forward. I was back in the world, a different part for sure Greece. … 

Greek palace? Follow trail of blood.

Find abductor, dead, further find second dead, go further, then third. Then darkness… then sudden flare of light .. Circe seated on a chair and Tilda beside her with no mouth her eyes rolling in terror. 

Circe. Approach and be seated, it’s time to dine. Sit, you bring me something I welcome, her strong blood …  Your many shapes in one so I can use for all manners of beasts to do my bidding. One command from me and … With her blood I will be able to wander the world even in the sun and the world will belong to me.

Aren’t you afraid of god?

I have never detect him. He doesn’t exist.

He does … 

Where is he or she?

Everywhere and I know god’s true name.

Tell me …

True name is imagination. When I gripped Tilda’s hand Circe was already splattered against the far wall. My true gift was imagination and I had taken Circe by surprise, though not defeated. I dragged Tilda towards the  open door as she was free from her grip. As we left Circe was regaining her shape…

I pushed Tilda through the door as it closed me in. She would entangle me, I change form … Raphael … I attack and slice her head from her shoulders.  Her spells reach me … I change to skyWolf, grew in power sliced her forehead, flew higher increasing size, swoop, felt losing power, change to Raphael …. Mistake … change to Wulf … no … could only use each shape once … change Quentin … Hugh key into Circe’ mouth … losing strength … want to prostate at her knees … I should have studied harder … think small a beetle … Circe confused .. she couldn’t see me .. I reached into my imagination and pulled things from my nightmares … slippery as silk , sharp as a razor and fought till I found fight no more. She was too strong too powerful, back to form of Wulf, weary, I turned crawled away as she laugh and grasp my hair …

Suddenly the door burst open … sun .. must have fought all day …  Two silver orbs. Thorne and Grimalkin drag her … Circe lost her grip on me … where were we? A black cauldron … Circe with new energy … pushes both away … Thorne throws her bones from her necklace to Grimalkin … Circe attacks her. It was a trick Thorne pulls the real thumb bones from her pocket as Circe is on top of Grimalkin, Thorne attacks from behind. Together they drag Circe to the cauldron. As she grasps the sides of the cauldron Grimalkin cuts her thumps and Thorne takes her bones. 

It is done. They dance and flowers grow beneath their feet. Thorne … Grimalkin I give you her bones … perhaps you should rule the dark? 

I will leave that to another. To be a ruler is to be prisoner to the demands of the office. Turns to me … You still have not learned to obey, but you did well. You weakened her while we prepared to deal with her. Now we have a problem … how to return you to the County. I will try to return you to the cellar below the house in Chipenden and align time. 

Soon the crossroads has 8 roads and she points to one and says take it … fast … I sprint … then there was nothing and I fall through nothing … 

I land … walked upstairs to find Alice cooking in a repaired house. 

I say, Circe is dead. 

We know, have talked to Grimalkin twice. Took her some time to get you back.

How much time?

Tilda’s birthday. 16 … 

Two years, I can deal with that.

Tilda …hug, thanks for saving me…

I was surprised when she said she would accompany me when I left. 

You need looking after … you’re not fit to be let out alone.

Alice was bothered by something (worry about Tilda) ,,, Tom was attacked by Malkin clan assassin, Makrilda and others. He killed two and escaped, but. 

Where are we going? Hrothgar? Who had returned to his underworld.

No Spook Johnson. 

Introduce Tilda with sausage and the daughter of Alice … 

Talk …

Finally he nods in approval.

We came to see how you were doing, and to help with the Pendle witches.

I tried … went badly … 

He doesn’t mention Grimalkin’s rescue.

I don’t mean all. The witch assassin and her close supporters.

Spook Johnson gleam in eyes.

Set off at dawn after Tilda’s breakfast.

Tilda smiles. I’ll cook and you wash dishes.

She’d come a long way since the butcher. Her venom now is delivered with a subtle smile.


Brother Wulf The Last Spook
Joseph Delaney
Brother Wulf The Last Spook


ALICE’s Tale

Opens with Alice Deane telling of _ abducting three children from farmer John Ashton of Grover Farm. She and Tom Ward head for Salford to check on the possible return of the Fiend.

Meet, Ashton go toward Tower to release children and deal with the Abhuman. Alice attacks, soften it up … throws her off … charges Tom, staff and silver blade kills Abhuman.

Return to Chipenden, girl waiting wanting to be apprentice. Tom says no.
Another person comes with problem, Tom heads off, Alice follows, and girl follows, Alice senses her and they confront each other. Alice casts a spell, she breaks it, Alice asks her name, Jenny Calder.

Jenny was killed by a water witch, then after fifteen years came back. Samhadre the Old Ones or Faery. Possible? Or tulpa? Hadn’t seen Tilda or Wulf for thirty years, when they were 16.
They get back. Tom not able to deal with it. Not sure what it is, but more serious, deep scorched gouges, only on Sunday… Go back next week.

How to deal with Jenny. Is Jenny … Jenny?

Two jobs near Priestown. Black Bull Inn and a haunting at a village called Banks. Same as Fletcher’s farm, rapping and gouges …

Henry Jackson Back Bull Inn keeper. Same gouges, rapping… only different day.

Meet young boy Danny. Takes liking to Jenny.

Danny tells his accounting a song. Ghost, ship and crew.

Ghost is a ghast, ship is full of demons. Alice sees Fiend.

Go back to Inn. Check out ward and building by day … see burned marks of hooves.

Wait for night. Fiend like shows up, fight, attack, Alice, Tom, about to lose,Jenny attacks and getting best of it as it when it disappears.

Not Fiend, but they are in real trouble. Someone is summoning him, Inn Keeper? And we were lured into a trap

Decide to leave. Try but fog and water keeps them from leaving. Go back to Inn. Try later

Danny write and sings song Ballad of Jenny Calder. Information in it he shouldn’t have known. We need to get away. Try again tomorrow.

Try, gain same mist … sense strong old god power. Leads them back to Inn and Henry Jackson with a gang of men. Capture,

Alice in Tom’s silver chain, pile of fire wood, coven of Essex witches, Halloween …

Tries to contact Grimalkin vie mirror writing.

More witches, 30 covens… Try to summon Wulf …

Henry Jackson and Danny, Fiend’s son, appear to Alice.

Drag Alice, Tom, and Jenny to crackling fire …

WULF’s Tale thirty years earlier

Tilda and Alice argue. She Leaves with Wulf who is going back to study with Hrothgar. Back in a few weeks

Hrothgar is working on a task, Wulf studies, and locked door becomes the center of their attention.

Try to open it, fail.

Wulf creates tulpas : Piddle, Black Fang,

Hrothgar tells Wulf he will need to create gristles to protect the house and keep anything from coming through the door.

Create wolves like Bill Arkwright used to have: Tooth, Claw, Blood, Bone, Hide, Hair,

Hrothgar is dead, what about the task he was trying to complete? What about the door? Time outside and inside?

Tilda opens door with magic and gets trapped inside, can’t get out as her magic doesn’t work inside. Only one person can free me … My mother …

Wulf go get her … Chipenden .. time many years … See Alice’s mirror message in puddle,

Sky wolf … Churchtown. See three prisoners and Fiend starting to appear. Attack drop Fiend on church spire… Attack and chase witches. Alice Tom free … Fiend vanishes…

Need to get out of here. Tilda … Wulf appears.

Where is my daughter?

Confusion about time, what happened, Tilda…

Need to go help Tilda, witches follow, wolves come, help, attack witches …

Alice can’t open door.

Ask Pan for power … granted.

Turns door to dust

Find Tilda and side side room with 30 cages some occupied and some empty. Door at end of hall goes to dark.

Wulf says he needs to ago through that door to find Hrothgar and discover how to protect the world from the dark. Alice you could be my guide.

Can’t deal with Pan was I would never enter dark the again in this lifetime.

Talk to Tilda, Think it is madness to go, strange you arrived just I time to save Tom and Alice, a set up to draw you in … We have to part ways, my parents are getting older and I need to be with them and defend them against the dark. I don’t want you seeing me get old. I will wait and balance time for awhile and hope to see you back safe. But then we must part.

Alice and Wulf argue over relationships … Wolf leaves, Alice slams the door.

Search for scent of Hrothgar, scent of Grimalkin. Find her in chains and kill three demon guards and release her.

Tells of his task, she agrees to help, first release Thorne … do. Discuss plan … get advice from Piper.

Go to Piper and ask for help to destroy the fiend.

Agrees and gives Wulf a sword.

Sends rats to find Hrothgar, return, he is near death.

Go to him, can’t save me, I will give you my last advice. Don’t create too many bound wraiths, each time split soul, and if split too much evil can take over. I tried to contain it in cage … it escaped and is within me now. We will die together.

Grimalkin tells Wulf they need to inform Pan what they are doing, don’t ask for help and he might offer it.

Pan and Wulf talk. Pans warns not to become too many and to be selfless not selfish. Why here uninvited?

To help you become what you should be …

What is that?

Ruler of the dark.

How do that?

... Talk

I do not wish it, but will give you help. Seeds…

Go to bone fortress. How getting?

Getting in is easy fighting to the fiend hard.

Piper music, rats, sword, Grimalkin, Thorne, get to fiend changes to dragon.

Fight, avoid dragon and attack its wings, till falls to ground. Then use sword as Raphael and cut off dragons head.

Talk ... thumb bones, and rats devour him.

Wulf was poisoned by fiends cuts. Thorne nurses, Pan asks for him to serve him, says I serve no one three times, argue and negotiate, when over not sure what he agreed to and didn’t. The destruction of the fiend disturbed time … a century has passed …

Thorne offered to be with Wulf …

Wulf … goes to door …

One day you will need me.

If I need you I will call your name.

Open door leave, last thing I saw was Thorne’s sad face.

Hrothgar’s underworld collapsed, disarray, grey wolves return. … adjust … go to Chipenden. Deserted, wander, decide, I will be the last Spook.

Find Tom’s staff, fix up, … Visit graves, John Gregory, Tom Alice, Tilda. No Jenny …

Bell. Bone witch … on way priest approaches and tells of boggart at church … No need to go to Coots … If I can’t lead you to safety, I will warn you of devils, demons, witches are waiting to ambush you at Coots.

I go. Summon grey wolves, and Pan , Seeds I cry …

I spit … Plants surround valley

Call Thorne ...

It is a trap, my trap …


Brother Wulf: Wulf's War
Joseph Delaney
Wulf's War

Prologue reviews Wulf as a tulpar, his six wolves, Pan and his war with Golgoth (Lord of winter), use of seeds, his sword (gift of Piper a mage with powerful pipes to control rats), Thorne, and their battle with Golgoth.

Chapter 1

Wulf is in the county and wondering why leaves are falling in June.

Review Grimalkin (slain by Golgoth), Alice, Tom, Wulf trained by a tulpar (Hrothgar), Grimalkin and Thorne slay Hecate and take possession of her cauldron so they can visit Earth during the night, later slay Circe.

Talks to Thorne who informs him Grimalkin is missing and the Crossroads and cauldron so she is unable to leave hell.
Grimalkin went missing in Silverdale … Wulf will leave for there in the morning. Trap? … Last visit to dark … fought and defeated the Fiend, but seriously poisoned, saved by Pan, but years passed so when he got back Alice, Tom, & Tilda were dead.

Heads to Silvertown as Wulf the Spook). Changes to Piddle (small dog), Saint Quentin), warrior, sky wolf, as necessary from situation to situation … finds a large black coach, and horses. Could transport Grimalkin.

Goes to eat at town inn, sees witch and her familiar (small dog/child?) …

Goes to Castlerigg stone circle … portal … smells Grimalkin … enters with Thorne … Finds Tom & Alice? silver chain cast on Thorne … try to deceive with lies … tells them they are gristles, disintegrate. Finds Grimalkin … talk …

They leave to search for crossroads & cauldron, Wulf leaves to give them time find them so they can travel better. Comes back tomorrow night, but no Grimalkin & Thorne. Same for three more days … nothing… decides to go back to Chipenden.

On way attacked by six armed soldiers with magic handcuffs … Capture and take to Quisitor … torture … Jenny attacks … kills quisitor.

Talk … Loki, Trickster God, Trigor, green three eyed demon, minstrel boy, Set out to find witch & familiar … Jenny says she is a tuple created by Loki, probably for you. She might have Mother Shipton’s prophecy book.

Attack kill them and their heads burst open and release hundreds of small tulpas that scatter in all directions looking for food … need energy to grow.

Can’t destroy them so decide to go to Chipenden house and wait for them to attack there. Jenny grabs … a book from the mess …

Read later the last inscription - Brother Beowulf will die in a citadel of ice owned by Lord Golgoth. No human will be at his side and demons will swarm around his place of execution. He will first be tortured and die in great pain …p. 82.

The Battle of Chipenden. The demon beasts grow and attack the town. The blacksmith and others help Wulf and Jenny defend it. As Wolf fights the last one presents an offer from Golgoth to join him as he has his blood in his veins. Never … Then, the trickster is done playing games, he will destroy you.
Back at the house the Boggart is dead and the clock isn’t ticking. Seeds won’t work call Thorne and nothing…

Old man appears … Old Gregory! Lad yo need help … Piper … Myrddin Wylie. He will only respond to a Samhadre so you will need to have Jenny call him.

Jenny, okay, we need water to call him. Nearest is Mud Lake …

What do you want of me child? … talk … I will summon the nearest Samhadre and command them to help you defend your home.

Back home the clock is ticking.
Samhadre arrive, scuffle with Wulf and Disrespect Jenny because she isn’t male.

The arena …

Clock stopped maybe because there is another writing from Grimalkin … Return to the stone circle immediately!

Arrive with Jenny … test not Grimalkin … Loki … Show Grimalkin and Thorne in labyrinth …

Loki fight me …. Makes a deal. If I die, Release Grimalkin & Thorne and I’ll take the form of another, if you die I will put your soul into my wraith…

Accept. Fight … Wulf makes an identical gristle … when it is slain, the sky wolf grows and surprise … attacks … wins … door opens and Thorne and Grimalkin enter. Talk … go to find crossroads & cauldron … Go back to house with Jenny …

Back to normal? Go to fight witch … catch kill in salt water bay.

Pipes of Pan … chat … Loki … kill? First must deal with Golgoth … slay the Lord of winter for me … You defeated Loki, destroyed the fiend, I believe you can defeat Golgoth … let’s end this war! I know … Slither … he knows another way to reach Golgoth … Grimilkin knows how to reach him …

Wulf goes back to house, study about Kobalos world and wait till Grimalkin tells how to find slither. Head north to find Slither, leave wolves to guard house.

Arrive, ghanbala tree, talk … there is a portal to Golgoth in Valkarky … Slither has an apartment there, can enter, and leave, will take Wolf, as slave to Golgoth’s temple and portal and from there he can get in and …

Slither can’t be seen helping as he would then become an enemy who wold be continuously hunted, but Pan has asked me to help so I will take you to the temple in the morning, sacrifices are at midnight.

Arrive, wait, attack & kill Kobalos, release other two sacrifices, climb stairs to top… find frozen forest, hear horn, hounds, and hunters.

Kill demon hunters, Piper arrives, eat, … Suggests turn back … No can’t Pan wants … Okay, seeds will work now and here is a gift for when in extreme danger. Go ahed, can’t miss it's a Hugh citadel.

Does, arrive, attack fight demons … Chains magic Golgoth captures … fool human, thought you could enter my lair and slay me … You will pay, freeze small part over time, sever pain, … starts, leaves … will be back … starts to get very hungry, will eat what Piper gave, opens package after package until small crumb, agh! Eats … chains fall off, magic! Can change form .. Saint Quentin to escape, sky wolf, Golgoth on way back … seeds to protect from cold freeze, sword to slash Golgoth through hedge of thorns … pierce by piece as the thorns carried them away to different underground locations… Triumphant fly back to Valkarky … change to Piddle to escape the city… At gate noticed, challenged, fight … head towards Slithers … Find Kobalos warriors attacking him … help! Win!

Talk … Stay? No need to go back to county, spook, see about Grimalkin & Thorne, & Jenny.

Arrive house … wolves greet him. Spook is enough!


Grimalkin closer to finding crossroads and cauldron.

Considers Slithers comment: we are all time travelers … Would it be possible to go back in time? Tilda … Tom, Alice, Spook Johnson? … But if do will all the good he has done be …




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