~Samantha handed the reins of her horse to Nanny and darted toward the booming sound of crashing water. As she looked out over the Elturon River, Samantha was awestruck. Upstream was a breathtaking waterfall that dwarfed the castle she’d grown up in. The cascading water was close enough for Samantha to feel the resulting cool mist on her skin. Moments later, Wills joined her to admire the view.
“That is a truly magnificent sight,” he said.
Indeed, many of the locations in my romantic fantasy Clash of Wills are preternaturally beautiful. On the far side of the Elturon River marks the Uncharted Region, where wizards are said to roam.
“We’re heading for the ice city,” Wills said. “Can you tell us the best way to get there?”
“You can buy a map over at the general store, but the best way means a five day hike downriver and across the Baltair Passage.” He laughed at their shocked expressions. “On the other hand, the fastest way is up the Stairs of Tears.”
“Why is it called that?” Samantha asked.
“If you climb them, you’ll find out for yourself. Only the hardiest souls can manage it. Six hours of steep stairs, straight up the mountain, with only three places to stop. Most folks quit halfway to the first lookout.”
Passage to the City of Ice
Wills used his map to locate the passage to the city of ice. They threaded their way through the tunnel as carefully as possible, but he still managed to bang his head on a finger of low hanging rock.
“Ow,” he said. “I’ll remember to duck next time.”
Guided tours to the Uncharted Region are hard to come by. I only managed to get these photos by bribing a one-eyed prospector with a sack of gold. Although the UR (as I like to call it) is gorgeous, it’s also fraught with danger. At one point I stepped on a mud demon, which would have literally depressed me for months if I hadn’t been protected by a fairy kiss. To learn more about the Uncharted Region, read Clash of Wills. It’s the next best thing to being there, and a whole lot more romantic.
~ S.G. Rogers
Princess Samantha’s magical compass will help her locate her long-lost brother, but only if she manages to escape her royal parents for a few weeks. When an unwelcome suitor comes to call, Samantha seizes her chance. She beguiles the prince into taking her north, intending to abandon him at her earliest opportunity. Unfortunately, his captivating good looks and charming manner present an unforeseen complication–especially when she is forced to accept help from the very man she has deceived.
To maintain his bachelorhood, handsome Prince Wills is not above deception. Although reluctantly entangled in Samantha’s scheme, he vows to protect her…until a lie threatens to destroy their alliance. Can his powerful attraction to Samantha overcome his mistrust? And can they survive a dangerous quest to the wild and magical Uncharted Region?
Clash of Wills is available from The Wild Rose Press and other online booksellers.