The Pealsong Refounding fantasy trilogy by Michael Warden. Gideon's Dawn, The Waymaker, The Word Within.

Inherited Lands


22 comments | Posted: Novel-Entry-The-Word-Within, by Michael D. Warden

It was not difficult for me to imagine a dark ending to the story, even long before Wordhaven was breached. I imagined it all the time, every day. I nursed my apocalyptic vision in the quiet of my mind, like a fevered god I could not stop serving no matter how I tried, bound to its predictions yet never daring to give it voice for fear of speeding its arrival. Despite the courage I had seen among the Remnant, despite the power of Dei’lo I had seen wielded, despite the arrival of the Pearl itself, it seemed inevitable to me that we would lose. I had lived too long in terror of Sa’lei power to dare believe for more.

— The Kyrinthan Journals, Musings, Chapter 30, Verses 130-133

The next thing Brasen knew he was encircled by a sea of legs. They stumbled past him or stepped over, hurrying through the mad mob of voices, too panicked to pay his presence any mind. Two women tripped over his head and shoulder just as he began to rise, which sent them sprawling across the marble floor of Wordhaven’s Outer Hall. Wincing, he touched his finger to the fresh pain on his temple, left behind by one of their boots; it came back red. Frowning, he fumbled to his feet. The two women did the same, but continued on their way without a word. (1)

Louder than the roar of voices, a thousand foreign thoughts assailed his own, too jumbled and confused to make them out. He swiped a trail of blood from his cheek and tried to think. Why this panic? Had the guardians breached the Stand? (2)

“Order, please! Stay calm! There is time enough!” (3)

The voice, echoing above the chaos of the Hall, belonged to the Paladin’s assistant, Kair. Brasen quickly found her standing on a footbridge one level up, her arms spilling over with papers she nervously tried to shuffle through. Katira and old Teram stood to either side, looking like two desperate parents worried their departing children might never return home again. (4)

His face flushed with heat at the sight of them, and he grabbed the shoulders of a passing man and forced their eyes to meet. (5)

“What’s happening here? Tell me!” (6)

“Keeper Stoneguard!” said the man, suddenly recognizing who he was. “We abandon Wordhaven, sir. But you know this, don’t you?” He tried to pull away, but Brasen held him fast. “I must get to the portal!” he pleaded. “My bondmate. I must find her!” (7)

“Who gave the order to leave?” Brasen demanded. “The Stand has not been breached! Has it? Has it?!” (8)

“The Paladin has fallen, sir! And the Head of Arms cannot be found. The elders gave the order,” bobbing his head toward the bridge above. “Now let me go!” He shook loose from Brasen’s grip and disappeared into the mob. (9)

Ajel, dead? And Donovan? He refused to believe it. It’s true he saw the Paladin struggling on the field, but then Donovan had come. The Head of Arms had saved his own life only moments before. He was the sure the big man rescued Ajel as well. He must have. (10)

But then, why were they not here? (11)

Quickly, Brasen summoned a sphere of flight and flew straight at the bridge where Kair and the two Wordhaven elders stood. All three looked genuinely shocked when they saw him coming, but he called out before any had the chance to speak. “What is this madness?!” he demanded. “Only the Paladin or Head of Arms can give the command to flee the Stand. What have you done?” (12)

“Peace, Keeper Stoneguard,” said Katira. “The command is Ajel’s.” (13)

“How? Where is he?” Brasen snapped. “Last I saw he was on the field!” (14)

“He approaches even now,” said Teram. “The doors are breached, Brasen. Every window too. That infernal blaze consumes the air within the Stand. They mean to suffocate us, or force us out. The Paladin and Head of Arms are fighting to slow its advance while we escape.” (15)

“You must get to the portal to Songwill,” Kair broke in. “You are assigned to lead our people there.” (16)

“I know my duties!” Brasen snapped. “Perhaps you should look to yours! This panicked mob I see below bears no resemblance to the drills we have all practiced at least a dozen times! Your lack of control puts these people in danger!” (17)

Just then a command boomed above their heads. (18)

“Stop! Be still!” (19)

Ajel! Brasen recognized the voice. But he’d never heard such anger in his tone. Or such pain. The mob froze, falling silent in that instant as if compelled by Word. Along the eastern wall the great doors had been swung wide, and a pool of open space advanced before them as the crowd skittered away from the sound of that voice. (20)

The Paladin was leaning heavily on the Head of Arms. The right side of his tunic had been burned away. The skin beneath was heavily sooted. What flesh could be seen was blistered and oozing, and pasty red. The right leg of his brown leathers was black and brittle with flakes of ash; he dragged it behind him like a half-forgotten memory. Half his hair was singed away. Only his face, alight with fury, remained untouched by fire. (21)

“What madness has taken you on this holy ground?!” Ajel raged. “Are we beasts that fear should be our god?! Is this how you want us all to be remembered, as those who trampled their brothers and sisters in their haste to save themselves from the great and almighty Sa’lei lords?” (22)

“Have they breached the walls?” a panicked man called out from the crowd. “Are they coming?” (23)

Surprisingly, Ajel softened at the question, and nodded. “Yes. They are coming.” (24)

Misti Says:

Nice. Looking forward to the entire book when it comes out. Don’t rush your writing, it is like a fine wine to savour. (Not to sound too corny…it is good stuff.)

Jesse Says:

I’ve read so many countless fiction books in all my long years… 19 to be exact! However, without a doubt you’re books absolutely destroy (pardon the young adult lingo… couldn’t think of any better way to say it) any other stories that I’ve read! From the current bestsellers like the Inheritance books from Paolini to Lord of the Rings (yep… I said it) I by far enjoy this trilogy way more than the others.. I just want to say thanks for this awesome storyline! Really surprised it’s not on the New York Times bestsellers list by now. Anyways, as an aspiring Christian fiction novelist, it really is inspiring and if I go big then you’ll definitely be on my list of influences! Keep up the good work!

Michael Warden Says:

Thanks for that, Jesse. Beautiful encouragement. :)

Howard Says:

Thanks so much for your perseverance. This trilogy is amongst the best that I have ever read. I have purchased the first book for friends and told many more about it. I believe that these books could rival the writings of Talkin and Lewis. I can’t wait to read the next installment.

Gabriel Says:

Keep it up! This is an absolute joy to read and am definitely going to continue to read for as long as you continue to write such beautiful work!

I, in my ripe old age of nineteen years, have read hundreds of books, but I must say your books are among my favorites. They are intriguing, emotional, and, at times, convicting (in a good way!). They embody everything I love to read about.

You are truly a gifted writer, Mr. Warden.
God Bless you!

Michael Warden Says:

Thanks Gabriel!

Jeremiah Kluge Says:

to continue the “ripe old age” line….in my ripe old age of 65, i have read hundreds of fiction/fantasy novels both christian and secular….yours are right up there with Danita K. Paul’s dragon series….i am anxiously awaiting the next installment. i have read and re-read all of chapt 1 and installment 1 of chapt 2 several times…not trying to rush you but i am hooked.

Brian Says:

can’t wait for more. So far, every bit as exciting and interesting as the previous two books.

Sanjay Says:

Hi Michael please please please when will the third book come out…i have nearly finished Ted Dekkers The Circle Series and need something of similar weight to dive into and relish and enjoy and be moved by….

Steve Taylor Says:

How is the book coming along. I’m a bit confussed. Is it being written or has that stopped? Are we going to see the end of the trilogy in paper or ebook form or not at all? I’d like to go back and read the first two books before the third one comes out. I need to refresh my memory. Please respond.

Michael Warden Says:

Hey Steve! I can understand your confusion, and appreciate your patience. The third and final book of the trilogy will definitely be completed, but unfortunately not for a while. I’ve had to make the difficult choice to lay aside the writing for a while to focus on making a living. My current plans are to get back to it in 2013. Thanks for hanging in there. I’m excited about finishing the project as soon as I’m able, and I promise to do my best to make the wait worth your while. Thanks!

Steve Taylor Says:

Thanks for responding. I’ll be waiting for the book and will be the first to buy a copy when it’s finished. If you find the time get the first two books on the ereaders so it can generate more interest in the trilogy and maybe give you a few extra bucks in the process. I know I’d like them in that format. Thanks again.

Steve Taylor Says:

Still here.

Kay Says:

What can I say that has not been spoken. I have been waiting for this 3rd book. What you have written so far is definitely exciting! I look forward to it’s completion. May our Lord bless you with this endeavor and provide the funds you need to continue. Thank you!

Chris O Says:

Omg omg omg omg. I love this story so mucchhh! I hope with all my heart and soul you are going to finish this series. It is so good. Comparable to my other all time favorite books. And I’m picky! That ending you left with the waymaker! “and silently the flap opened and Gideon gazed upon stevron, still in awe of the destruction he had wrought upon his stepfather; and camly spoke ‘traitalos’- and in his suprise, lord steveon vanished in a sweeping motion of inexorable emptiness”

(I know that’s not quoted word for word. Hey it’s been awhile since I read book 2 ;)

But gosh it was sooo good. Please please tell me you are finishing this and soon?! Im almost to the point where I’ll even try writing the third book myself just so I have an absolute and final ending! Lol ;)

Jesse Radford Says:

I wrist why you take do long to finish this book mr. Warden. I have follows your series since it first came out and i picked your book up on a small table in the library labeled used books. Iv been waiting for the word within since the day you finished waymaker. I am intrigued by the sorry so far and i am very eager to see the future of gideon and the others. So i ask you mr warden. Please hurry. I very devote 22 year old fan awaits.

Rita H Says:

FYI, I still keep this site in my favs and check on it every so often, just longing for the day when the saga continues. Mr. Warden, I hope this post finds you blessed and happy.

Josh Pagr Says:

I check back periodically, but haven’t seen any updates for a while. Is there any news on book three? Hope all is well and you are simply busy in a good way. Love the books and look forward to the conclusion.

DavidW Says:

I’m not saying I’m impatient but another chapter would be nice.

J. "Aku" T. Says:

I first read Gideon’s Dawn about 11 years ago, and I loved it. Stories and reading in general were highest back then among all the things in life that I most enjoy, and I loved Gideon’s Dawn more than most any other book, and it was not just because I was immensely hard pressed back then to find a book that I couldn’t devour[ in much less than a 12-hour day] as quick and as lightly as candy. I was enthralled and I loved it immediately from the very first page to the very last, and each page after the first did nothing but enthrall me further and make me love it more, and I am quite certain that I will love it .. quite literally … FOREVER.

I loved the way it was written—I loved the way it opened, the characters, the world, the premise, the story, the journey — everything.
I found it deeply moving, in so many ways.

I am eleven years older now – and I have since read many parts of it( if not even all of it) more than once – and I continue to love it still, every bit as much as I did the first time around——if not even more so, now, because it has been some small part of my life for so many years and stood out to me so well for so long thus far already — and it continues, even now, to be one of my most favored books of all.

My point, though, is this: I am not here to ask you to hurry up and finish The Word Within, I am here to say that I will wait, however long it takes. And if it never happens that The Pearlsong Refounding is ever finished… well, that’s okay too. I won’t hold it against you — and I won’t feel as if you have let me down in any way because all that you have already written so far has far from let down; I understand that sometimes things do happen to take us in a direction away from certain things we might’ve really liked to do, and sometimes when that happens we aren’t ever able to connect again with those things and the possibility of actually doing them later in quite the same way as we did before; but just in case, I will still be here. And if it[/finishing The Word Within/] IS still something that you are still able to connect with and that you DO still want to do, I’ll be right here – in your corner, for life – to cheer you on, all along the way. And if or when that day should ever come, when the time is right, that all the pieces do fall in line, and you are able to finish it, I will welcome it every bit as happily in 70-years as I would right now. And I want to thank you, very deeply, just for writing Gideon’s Dawn alone, and for writing everything else that you have already written so far. (- Gideon’s Dawn is one of the few things so far that I would describe as, truly, ‘A – Masterpiece – !’.) It has been incredible – and my great honor – to experience, and I will treasure it. Always. :-)
And I do hope, sincerely, that wherever life has taken you, wherever it finds you now, and wherever it will take you from there, you are blessed — and have Peace.

Once again, I Thank you,truly ~ : )

Michael Warden Says:

Thank you all for your kind remarks, and most especially your patience! I know it’s been tough to hang in there waiting for Book 3 to continue. It’s been tough for me to not work on it for such a long time, too. But I will be starting the work again this October, and continuing from there, week after week in my spare hours, until it is done.

Again, thanks for hanging with me. You guys are incredible. :)

brett Says:

I am a die hard fan of this trilogy cannot wait for the 3rd book to come out. Any more chapters being realesed some time soon?

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Inherited Lands
Gideon's Dawn Waymaker

"...a work of extreme depth and breadth of vision."
-Christian Fiction Review


Michael D. Warden has been working professionally as a writer and editor since 1989. After several years as Managing Editor for a large publishing house in Colorado, he stepped into the adventure of writing full time. In addition to his fantasy trilogy The Pearlsong Refounding, he has written several non-fiction books, and contributed to more than 150 other books and magazines.

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