From the outset, I have tried to make Carrot Field different from other fantasy worlds. There are no elves or dwarves, no sturdy northern warrior tribes, no faux medieval feudal societies, no wizards or magic. To give you an idea of what Carrot Field is like, here are some elements that make up that world.
Areth: The planet the story takes place on. Areth is an earth-like planet with one satellite; it revolves around a sun with several other planets in its system; Areth is the second planet out from the sun. Days are 23 hours long and the year is 364 days. There are three continents, southern and northern polar regions, and many islands.
Arden: Believed to be the creator of the universe. Mysterious deity who is waging an eternal war against his dark opposite, the Lord Ouroboros. Arden and Ouroboros came to Areth 1200 years ago, recruiting nations to fight their battles for them. It is believed by some that if Arden and Ouroboros fought each other openly, their battle would destroy the universe; they have need of flesh and blood champions. Before their arrival, these timeless deities were unknown to the peoples of Areth. The First War of Darkness ended in an uneasy truce. Ouroboros is stirring again; but Arden remains silent and unseen . . .
Carrot Field: This is an area enclosed by the Great Forest, about the size of Ireland, originally known as Lavaliar, where the Animal Folk migrated 1200 years before the novel begins. It is secluded from the outside world and Animals now view their pre-migration history as nothing more than myth and legend. Lavaliar is actually divided into two countries: Carrot Field and Vorland. Vorland, ruled by an aristocracy of Boar families, is sometimes the enemy of Carrot Field and the two nations have waged war against each other. Carrot Field has been at peace for several years; but under the leadership of its newly elected Prime Minister, it is facing threats from without and within. Wheels are turning; plots within plots are soon to be revealed . . .
Outlands: The regions to the east, west and north of Carrot Field, where the Animal Folk migrated from after the First War of Darkness. There are three major nations: Melniar, Nirkkazad and Gorthang. Between those nations and the far north stands the Desolation, a vast tract of wilderness. Almost like a gate into the Desolation stand the Arad Arn, two mountain ranges. Beyond the Desolation are the grasslands (to the east) where the city-state Pelaria once stood, and Isliadorn, an island city in the Moon Mirror Sea, beyond the Petrified Forest.
Melniar: The country of the Feolorn. The Feolorn are governed by a Lord and Lady along with their cabinet of Chamberlains and Ministers. The Lord and Lady are elected from groups of specially groomed and educated individuals from all walks of life; they are sometimes married to each other, but not always. Feolorn are devoted to the arts and sciences but they also have a standing army of foot soldiers and cavalry, who ride the great Horned Steeds. Feolorn are cool tempered and not prone to displays of emotion, they practice various disciplines of enlightened non-attachment.
Nirkazad: The country of the Leonine. The Leonine are ruled by a King and Queen of royal lineage but their society has many strata. Only a Huntress can hunt for the supping table (a Lion can hunt for sport but the meat is never eaten, it is offered as sacrifice to their god, Eleth-Arden); the Huntresses sometimes go to battle with the warriors. Nirkazad has four “gate cities” at the South, North, East and West of their country. Facing east is the greatest city, Yor-Aman-Kor, where the king rules from his giant Ziggurat, which also serves as a temple to Eleth-Arden and a storehouse for ancient treasures. The Leonine migrated from the Eastern Plains after a long and catastrophic war with the Draconians, a sea-faring reptilian race that sought to reestablish its empire after their island home sank into the ocean. Leonine are passionate and open hearted, fiercely loyal and nationalistic.
Gorthang: The subterranean realm of the Maugilar. These are Maugilar who separated from their original people 1200 years before. During the First War of Darkness, they devoted themselves to the great warrior, Malveth. After the war, they were rejected by their people, who worshipped the god Arden, and they followed Malveth to the lands east of Nirkazad. Gorthang is a fabulous underground complex of vast halls and chambers. Maugilar are great builders and warriors. After the First War of Darkness, Malveth traded allegiances, and allied himself with the Lord Ouroboros. Gorthang became known as The Shadow Kingdom; the Maugilar now struggle under the governorship of Prince Niar, the son of Ouroboros, and his mother, Ora. Niar has his own warrior sect, the Serpent Guard, and they are often in conflict with Malveth’s Legionaries.
Pelaria: Once a great redstone city and heart of a city-state, built by the diminutive Dworrows. After the First War of Darkness, Wolves loyal to Ouroboros attacked Pelaria and ruined it. The Dworrows now live in exile in the Marshlands. Dworrows are a merry people and they like nothing better than racing their four legged bird-steeds, called Rhuuka.
The Petrified Forest: Once a lush woodland, transformed into a dead land by Ora. Two tribes of Wolves live here, one loyal to Arden, the other to Ouroboros. They are engaged in an endless civil war.
Isliadorn: City of golden stone, built by Human hands after the First War of Darkness. No one knows what became of the Humans, they seem to have simply disappeared. Legend says that they are only sleeping, waiting to be summoned to the final battle . . . .
Sebastian comes from a long line of adventurers. He is on the lookout for his own great adventure when the legendary scholar Professor Plotonicus crashes a hot air balloon in his garden! Sebastian is swept away on a quest to find the mythical Human race, rumored to live in the Outlands beyond the Great Forest. Sebastian is brave, loyal and intelligent. But he discovers more than he thought he would in the Outlands and along with his companions is drawn into a great conflict between the powers of light and darkness.
Professor Hercule Xavier Plotinicus
Plotonicus ruined his academic career hunting down traces of the Human race. He has taken to living with Foxes - WildAnimals who practice the old ways and still dwell in burrows underground - and is not taken seriously by anyone. He has discovered a way to cross through the Great Forest - a feat never achieved before by any Animal - this is his last chance to redeem himself and prove his theories true. Plotonicus is brilliant, impatient, fearless ... and perhaps a bit mad.
Brand is a direct descendant of the famed Mab Redtail, who led the Animals out of the Outlands and to Carrot Field after the War of Darkness (or so the legends tell). He has the power of Foresight. He undertakes the quest because he has had a vision that the Enemy has returned and must be stopped. Brand is courageous, thoughtful and wise. He has not yet discovered the extent of his powers.
Once a warrior for the powers of light he has defected to the Enemy - The Lord Ouroboros - and now commands the Maugilar Legions. He is a god and king to them. Malveth is neither evil nor cruel. He believes he has good reason to serve Ouroboros. Malveth is a great warrior, fearless in battle.
Avigale & Jariss
Leaders of the Nythna - or "Humans" - according to legend. They are remembered as Saints by the Animals of Carrot Field. Together they fight to restore the balance between light and darkness.
Imris leads the Feolorn Cavalry. He is a strong commander, a philosopher and a thinker.