The Cold FireBooks / Debut Books
The Cold Fire
Chapter 3 – The Nightcap
by Aaron Navrady
(Chapters 1+2 also available)
As the sun rises on the 13th century, the western aggression of the Crusades is turning inward upon itself. Gaspard de Bec, a battle-hardened Norman crusader and his Breton understudy Julien are recruited to a special company who must apprehend a splinter group of fugitive heretics as they flee the Albigensian Crusade south of France and attempt to cross the frozen Alps.
As the knights get closer to seizing their quarry, a mysterious swordsman brings calamity to their task, and in the aftermath Gaspard and Julien begin to question the virtue of both their mission and their masters. Such seeds of doubt threaten to imperil not only their charge to protect the Holy Roman Empire, but Gaspard’s tenuous calling as a knight.
The Cold Fire explores the contradictions embodied in these holy warriors – a heady mixture of devotion to God, kin and sword. The protagonists end up painfully entangled in this conflict of principles as they spearhead the medieval church’s war against heresy.