Year of the Fledgling by Linda Kage

Teen Romantic Fantasy
Orginally published 29 July 2023
118,132 words, 416 pages
0-Flame Sensuality Rating

Theron, the Eradicator, has one job: to protect the people of Starcast by killing the deadly creatures that attack them. That's it.

Being an Eradicator comes with a heavy price, however, for he's strictly prohibited from having any kind of personal contact with the villagers.

But one night, he sneaks into the town's harvest festival, anyway, and meets Xia, the lovely, young healer's apprentice.

As Theron and Xia grow close, it becomes harder to tell what's more dangerous: risking a fatal injury while battling dark ones or risking fatal punishment by beginning a secret, forbidden dalliance.

In either case, doom seems to be the only outcome, and tension mounts as love and danger blur across the reach of this fantastical, seaside landscape.


The Legend of the Dark Ones

When one small dwarf planet among the stars was young, its creator captured the worst abominations to mutate and prowl her world, and she buried them deep under the Cold Sea, just north of the mainland, in the hopes of keeping her people safe.

But the creatures fought back for their freedom. They pushed up against the roof of their prison, heaving at the earth above them until they formed a new island in the middle of the fathomless waters, and then they kept pushing until they shoved a mountain right up into the center of that island.

Decades passed, and curious voyagers discovered this patch of ground created by the dreadful beings under their feet, only to settle there and make it a home for themselves.

But every so often, a dark one would emerge, finding its way to the surface and cutting such an atrocious swash of death and destruction across the land that the people set up a system of warriors to protect them all from their evil foes.

And they called their champions the Eradicators.

As years passed, battles grew more frequent between monster and man, until a prophet foretold the end, saying, “The only chance the people of the island have to exterminate the dark ones, once and for all, will come in the year of the great fledgling.”

Except no one, not even the prophet, quite knew what that meant.

Presently, hope for the fledgling’s arrival wanes dimmer by the day as the Eradicators’ numbers dwindle ever lower from laying down their lives to keep humankind safe. And many citizens doubt this mysterious foretold year will ever come at all.


Meanwhile, on the northernmost edge of the isle in the small village of Starcast…

Year of the Fledgling Teaser