Nerine’s Room

Nerine's room

When Nerine first enters her room in the 6th scene of Fate’s Door, she is desperate to find some oddment that she can add to the tapestry of destiny that will save her friend Altairos.

The well at the roots of the World Tree has just shown Altairos drowning at sea. And Nerine knows that if she can just find the right forbidden something, she can save him. Maybe.

She tries to calm herself – anxiety rarely helps one think clearly. The warmth emanating from the tile stove in the right corner on the outer wall helps, but not enough. Her errand is too fraught, too weighted with life and death.

So she’s looking at her room with far more attention than she’s given it in the last 5 years, and we look with her.

There are the built-in wardrobes on the left, with a stack of drawers and a niche between them. Could that vital something be behind those wardrobe doors or in one of the drawers?

Floorplan of Nerine's RoomAcross from the room’s door, there’s the shelf and mirror, and the two chests of drawers tucked beneath the shelf. There must be many trinkets stored in them. Maybe the saving item is amongst them.

The bed on the right with its nightstands seems less likely, as does the cushioned armchair near it. Surely the the linens in the blanket chest at the foot of the bed are too large to be incorporated into the tapestry of fate.

But Nerine considers everything. She does not have much time, and only the right thing will save her dear friend.

For extra chapters from Fate’s Door, see:
Update on Fate’s Door (Eilidh and Mount Olympus)
Nerine’s Youngest Sister (Agnippe and Mount Helicon)
The Nine Muses of Antiquity (Agnippe and the Muses)
Hera’s Handmaidens (Eilidh’s Farewell Party)

For more about Nerine’s world, see:
Brocade and Drawlooms
Cottage of the Norns
The Norns of Fate’s Door
The Baltic Sea
The Ancient Goths
Lugh and the Lunasad
Crossing the Danube
The Keltoi of Európi
Vertical Looms



Landscapes of Auberon

Perilous Chance takes place in Auberon, but it is not the only story of mine set in that country. A fair bit of Troll-magic also transpires there, seen through the eyes of young Bazel.

Auberon occupies the northern tip of a large peninsula jutting out into the Merovessic Sea from the vast continent of Giralliya. It’s a green place, receiving a lot of rainfall throughout the year. I wish it were real, so that I could go visit it!

Auberon has four major regions clustered around the central mountains known as the Rivenpeaks.

Map of Auberon

Ransea lies to the northeast. It’s a rocky peninsula overgrown with brambles. Marble and limestone from its quarries are famed for their quality. No wonder Tiber Berefelte, a sculptor (and father to Clary, the heroine of Perilous Chance), is happy living where he does. Clary and her little sister Elspeth encounter their adventure in one of the old, abandoned quarries of Ransea.


Stonnor, in the northwest, features moorland. Sheep and shepherds populate its largely treeless stretches of turf and gorse. Bazel’s home, the manor Gliddencote, sits in a pocket of friendlier soil right on the edge of the moor where the herbalist Melise dwells. While playing hide-and-bide, Bazel discovers his sisters Cecily and Phoebe hiding behind the stone wall dividing Gliddencote from the moor.


Wetlands grace much of southeastern Tardleigh. Sea salt, fish, and a particularly durable rush plant are harvested by its people. The sea influences the life of the region strongly, and Auberon’s largest port, Hollispier, grew up around a large natural bay on its coast.


The Rivenpeaks hold deposits of iron and copper ores. Once steam power arrived in Auberon, the area was developed for mining. Recreational interest followed industrial use, and many wealthy families own chalets on the mountain slopes, while the common folk visit hotels there.


Grenold is the heavily populated heartland of Auberon. The land is fertile and farmed. Many villages, towns, and cities dot its rolling hills. The capital city of Caranda thrives on the Aube River winding through the valley.


I must confess that finding photos of the real world that match both the feeling and the vision I have for places in my North-lands gives me a thrill. What about you? Did you enjoy seeing Ransea and Stonnor? Or do you prefer to generate images of these story places from your own imagination?

For more about Perilous Chance:
Justice in Auberon
Clary’s Cottage
Notes on Chance
Not Monday, But Lundy

For more about Troll-magic’s Bazel:
What Happened to Bazel?



Clary’s Cottage

Clary – the 11-year-old heroine of Perilous Chance – lives in a comfortable cottage with half-timbered walls and a thatched roof.

Chance cottage

Her father’s studio, where he sculpts stone into marvelous statuary, occupies a separate outbuilding. He keeps the accounts for his commissions in the cottage library.

Clary’s mother’s “sewing room” sees more of Clary’s and Elspeth’s school lessons, cozy mother-daughter chats, and late family suppers than it does stitchery.

The family eats breakfast and luncheons in the front parlor, as well as entertaining guests there.

The back door, between the kitchen and the scullery, is where Clary and Elspeth depart on their visit to the old bramble-grown quarry.

cottage 1st floor

Clary and Elspeth share a bedchamber on the second floor of the cottage.

Their baby brother, Lyrus, occupies the nursery next to their parents’ bedchamber.

cottage 2nd floor

Edited to Add 08/15/2018: Below is a photograph of the Wherwell cottage that inspired my visions of Clary’s home. I recently discovered that it’s available for vacation rental as an AirBnB! Wouldn’t it be fun to actually stay in Clary’s cottage? If I ever do, I’ll bring a copy of Perilous Chance for its bookshelves. 😀

Perilous Chance is now out in paperback! The paperback edition includes appendices with a few extra tidbits about Clary (such as that above) and her family. I Amazon UK I Amazon DE I Amazon ES I B&N I CreateSpace

Perilous Chance paperback

Of course, Perilous Chance continues to be available as an ebook. I Amazon UK I Amazon DE I Amazon ES
Amazon AU I Amazon IN I Amazon CA
B&N I iTunes I Kobo I Smashwords

For more about Perilous Chance:
Justice in Auberon
Not Monday, But Lundy
Notes on Chance
Cover Creation: Perilous Chance