Act of Will (Tor Fantasy) by A.J. Hartley

By A.J. Hartley

Act of Will is a boisterous myth event that introduces us to Will Hawthorne, a medieval actor and playwright who flees the professionals merely to discover himself inextricably guaranteed to a bunch of high-minded adventurers on a perilous challenge. Will travels with them to land the place they're charged with the research and defeat of a ruthless military of mystical horsemen, who look out of the mist leaving loss of life and devastation of their wake.In the process Will's uneasy alliance together with his new protectors, he has to get his pragmatic brain to simply accept selfless heroism (which he thinks is absurd) and magic (which he does not think in). Will needs to finally make a decision the place his loyalties particularly lie and what sort of he's ready to do--and believe--to get up for them.

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Speak only when you have to. I don’t want you being chased across rooftops again. There is an inn called the Wheatsheaf about a mile along the Stavis road. We will meet there, hopefully, for lunch. If we are not all together by nightfall, those who have arrived should head for Stavis at dawn tomorrow. Orgos, you take the wagon through the southwestern gate.

It probably wouldn’t do much damage to anyone in armor but it was a lovely piece of work: polished russet wood inlaid with silver. It was exactly what a Cherrati would carry. Orgos was to ride with me in a wagon full of “borrowed” trade goods whose origin I dreaded to consider. He looked good too, I must say. There are more blacks native to Cherrat than to these parts, so he didn’t look at all out of place in his dark leather and crimson silks. He girded on a rapier (another weapon deemed legal because it wouldn’t penetrate the plate cuirass of an Empire soldier), and completed the picture with a plumed cap.

For the moment. After I had finished my rather meager and somewhat edited life story and declared all I owned in the world (now down to four silver pieces, a single copper coin, the clothes I stood up in, and two bits of lead), Mithos motioned us into the corridor, out of earshot of the struggling innkeeper, and addressed the group. The bar was silent and there was no sign of other soldiers. “We have no choice but to leave. We can handle three light foot patrolmen easily enough, but they’ll have a platoon of hoplites after us within the hour.

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