Name: Susan McPhail
Twitter Handle: @susan_mcphail
Title: THE TREASURES OF DODRAZEB
Genre: Adult Historical Fantasy/Secret History
Word Count: 97K
My Main Character’s Most Fearsome Obsession Is:
As an impulsive young soldier thirsting for glory, Rasteem's actions caused the death of his older brother six years ago. Now he fears his nephew Kamran, an inexperienced soldier, will repeat his mistakes. Still channeling enormous guilt and self-loathing into violent outbursts, his overprotectiveness intensifies when he’s obliged to take the boy into battle. When Kamran needlessly seeks danger and appears to disobey orders, Rasteem’s angry response threatens to destroy more than just their relationship.
Rasteem is a hardened warrior-prince, crushing enemies in brutal warfare and bringing victory to the Persian Empire in the late third century. He must battle his volatile temper, however, when he's forced to bring his young nephew on a mission to find a dangerous criminal known as the Viper. Evidence points to the king of remote, obscure Dodrazeb as the Viper, but Rasteem's search for him yields clues that Dodrazeb hides more than just an accused murderer. Clashing with a scheming princess who will do anything to save her father and protect her kingdom’s secrets, all Rasteem wants is to kill the Viper and leave Dodrazeb before his nephew is harmed.
Everything changes when Rasteem discovers Dodrazeb’s wondrous artifacts and lethal science. Their miraculous medical devices, unseen communications signals, automated machinery, and other futuristic marvels are used peacefully, but the technology also has sinister applications. Hindered by the princess’s clever sabotage, Rasteem’s mission becomes a race to recover a deadly weapon that can grant its user nearly limitless power. Determined to unmask the villain before he destroys the Persian Empire and enslaves Dodrazeb, Rasteem must decide who to trust to protect the ones he loves.
Rasteem resisted sending the boy back to his tent. Another volley of fiery arrows whistled into the city, amplifying the chaos. Restless Persian soldiers waited. Flaming missiles from their siege engines had already reduced sections of the city’s wall to rubble.
“What’re we waiting for?” Kamran bounced on his toes.
Rasteem glanced at the young soldier. “Light. We don’t know this city.”
He was ready to conquer this enigmatic kingdom. Eager to find and put an end to the Viper, Rasteem most wanted to keep Kamran safe. He wouldn’t allow his nephew’s death to fulfill the bizarre prophecy that had brought them to Dodrazeb. This must be a quick victory.
The eastern sky continued to brighten. “Stay close.”
Rasteem raised his sword and roared an order. He sprinted through a smoking breach in the wall, Kamran at his heels. The army poured inside on foot and on horseback. Rasteem veered left, leading a flanking maneuver. The cavalry pushed straight through.
Brave resistance was no match for the invaders. Rasteem yanked his blade from an enemy’s belly. When another came at him, he kicked away the man’s weapon and drove a sword through his heart.
He looked over his shoulder for Kamran. Slaughtered Dodrazebbian soldiers littered the streets, but the boy was nowhere in sight. Rasteem spun around, cold dread sucking the air from his lungs. Frantic, he ignored the metallic stink of blood, filtered out tortured cries. A familiar shout drew him to an alley. An enemy had trapped Kamran, backed him against a wall.