The Wind and Fire is the first book released in the series and tells the story of two Fourborn Guardians, Kofi and Lela and how the prophecy of the waning moon gives them both direction in a world without freedom.
Kofi Magoro is an unlikely hero:
Second son to Gamba and Sade Magoro, Kofi has been called many things. The village boy, the over protective brother, the rebellious son, the hesitant warrior but nothing has suited him more than being the unlikely hero of his own making.
Brother to Ayo, Xola and Jomo, Kofi inherited his need for adventure from no one in his family. This doesn't stop him from pursuing his dreams, even though he has to work through his uncertainty and the lack of direction that frustrates him.
The open, jovial face in the crowd, Kofi makes friends easily and family takes on an important role in his life. An intelligent spiritualist he has strong ties to his homeland of Zjarri and to it's people and will stop at nothing to keep these ideals safe.
The sacred Fire of Zjarr is everything to Kofi. When he finds himself away from his element, Kofi armed with only his belief and inner strength is forced to kindle the Fire that lives within him on his own even if it means insurgency.
A practicing archer and amateur fire lighter, Kofi likes to start his days off early, rising in time to bask in the sun and all her wonders. He is a keen hunter, an elephant fruit addict and makes the ideal companion if you want to stick around for just one more cup of kava.
As his story grows, Kofi assumes the role of leader of the Fourborn Guardians. Armed with a fierce determination and the Fire that burns inside of him, he will always find a way to continue to fight for what is right.
Lela Iboro Asar is an outcast princess:
The creation of a frowned upon love between Hakim Asar and Thema Kibibi Iboro, Lela was born a despised, motherless child. An only child she grew up with the elements of two very different worlds raging on inside of her.
Roaming the red dunes, Lela is taken in by the outcasts of Brissan society, but this doesn't stop her from fighting the link she has with the Wind. Outspoken, hot headed yet sensitive Lela stands against her father's people while her desperate need for acceptance drives her closer and closer towards Zjarr and the Fire.
In her mind being accepted by her mother's people means that she needs to abandon the Wind completely. Lela soon learns that this is not the case when Wind briefly dominates the Fire. Instead she learns that both elements have to live together in order for her to grow.
Witty, kind hearted and determined, Lela loathes camels and early mornings. A girl of impeccable night vision, unruly hair and a peculiar fashion sense using Brissan colourless glass and crystal bracelets - she is at her happiest next to a roaring camp fire out in the open plains of Zjarri, a cup of kava in hand while she shares stories and honey cakes.
Megan Futcher's Mini-Bio:
People and cultures have always fascinated me and I enjoy thumbing through heavy books on anthropology and archaeology. My novels and novellas dive into an unknown world before recorded history and I love asking the 'what if' question while I share online and write the 4 born, a fantasy spin on human evolution and freedom exploring strength and beauty of multiculturalism.
Wind and Fire Synopsis:
In a world where the four elements rule as gods, the Gaias of Wind, Fire, Water and Earth determine the existence and fate of every man and women. Threatening this seemingly perfect world is the Fourborn – a yet to be identified baby born of all four races and the only one who has the power to set mankind free from it's elemental shackles.
Divinely chosen in the pending chaos is a guardian from each race. With the words of an ancient prophesy as their only guide, they must find and protect the Four born at all costs or risk losing everything they hold dear.
I woke up early the next morning to the sound of birds tweeting and chirping in the tree above me.
My body was stiff from the previous day’s terror but I felt more alive than ever.
Taking a deep breath I let the cool, clean air fill my lungs.
I would never tire of this luxury having breathed in air filled sand most of my life.
Kofi was already up and sitting with a straight back on his grass mat, nursing a tiny cup of freshly brewed kava in his large hands.
He was facing east watching the sun rise.“What are the sunrises like in Brissa?” he asked, looking up at me briefly as I lowered myself to sit down beside him.
“Truthfully, Zjarrian sunrises are the only sunrises I’ve ever seen in my life.”“So you like to sleep in?” he laughed, handing me the tiny cup.
“Not anymore.”“Well, I’m glad to share them with you,” he said sincerely, rewarding me with one of his big smiles.We sat in a comfortable silence while the sun climbed higher in the deep blue sky.
Massive, fluffy clouds were scattered across the blue that day and I watched in wonder as they moved across the sky in the wind.
This amazement didn’t last for long though as my thoughts very quickly drifted back to the previous day.I was completely out of my element in Zjarri.
I had lived my whole life in the predictable desert of Brissa, barely existing from one day to the next.
A few days ago, I was still sitting in the sand dreaming about this place - my mother’s home.
But I was here now.
Brissa and the life I had there, was in the past.
I was now in a land that was moving around me with great speed, a land where every living creature and plant was not only surviving but thriving and fighting back and I had to catch up with it and jump aboard before it left me stranded in the dust.
Reviewing my actions so far, it was stupid and naive of me to think that I could just stroll into a land so vibrant that I could feel it’s heart beating.
What gave me the right to even think it would welcome me as one of it’s own? I may have the blood of my mother’s people pumping through half my veins but it was the other half, my Brissan half, that clearly didn’t belong here.
I would have to prove myself in order to survive.
Silently accepting Kofi’s guidance had put me on the right path already, all I had to do was let the Fire that burned deep within me, out.
I had to become a Zjarrian to finally be accepted as one.
I had spent my entire existence fighting the Brissan inside me.
The time had come to simply forget about the sand and embrace what I really longed for, what my soul deserved.
I stood up, the sense of purpose suddenly sparking to life inside me once more.
“Come on, Zjarri is waiting for us and I want to see what’s out there.”Why my mother had ever left this breathtakingly, beautiful place for the barren wasteland of the Clan was beyond me.
Perhaps she truly had loved my father enough to leave all of this behind.
I shook my head, I would never know the real reason for her leaving.
“You’re shaking your head.
Have you changed your mind already?” Kofi asked as he rolled up his little tent, the one he had so graciously allowed me to sleep in the night before.
“No, of course not.
I’m ready for anything with this is pulsing through me!” I answered, swallowing the last of the kava.
Kofi laughed loudly, shaking his head in amusement.“No, honestly, I was just thinking how beautiful Zjarri is.” “I can think of one living soul who’s beauty far outweighs this old place,” Kofi mused, staring at me with enormous brown eyes.I lowered my eyes, feeling the blood rushing up into my face and cheeks.
Why couldn’t I have been blessed with darker skin, it would be a lot easier to hide my emotions that way?Over the last day and a half this stranger and I had made a connection.
It was so strong and deep that I felt like I had known him for a lifetime.
I felt safe and content around him and I knew I could trust him with my life.
I also knew however that I could trust Kofi with my heart.
Thinking back to the Keeper’s prophesy, it might have sounded just like the babbling words of the old and shrivelled but deep down I felt that I had to take their warning seriously.
I couldn’t live with myself knowing that I had failed to stop the Darkness that they spoke of.
I needed to find the Four.
In order to do that I had to be open with Kofi.
I needed to tell him why I needed to go to Joro.
Choosing the right time to tell him without sounding insane was going to be difficult, no matter how long I waited.
When would the right time be? Today? After we had arrived in Joro? The moment the Darkness hit? It wouldn’t be fair on either of us and not telling Kofi sooner than later could have consequences of it’s own.My camel, had in all the confusion of the stampede yesterday, somehow managed to get away unharmed.
Kofi found her down by the river drinking beside the very same animals that had almost trampled us to death.
Dragging her away from her new friends, we set out walking alongside her as she continued to carry all my belongings along with Kofi’s tent, weapons and his grass mat.
“Why don’t you use it?” Kofi asked, looking at the two-seated saddle strapped onto my camel’s back.I wasn’t about to tell him the whole truth, the bit about my being unable to guide the beast so I stuck to my story.
“I really hate camels,” I answered simply.“Why?” Kofi asked again, holding back a laugh.“Haven’t you noticed? They spit, kick and bite and they’re really smelly.” “Suit yourself,” Kofi shrugged, pulling himself up onto the saddle as we walked along.
“It’s still a long way to Joro and I need to rest my feet.”I frowned as he seated himself comfortably in the saddle as though he had done it many times before.
He then reached into his bag for one of those fruits he couldn’t stop eating and settled back to relax.
I clicked my tongue, frustrated at giving in.
My feet were also killing me and I had to agree, Joro was still a very long way away.
“Help me up then,” I grumbled, reaching for his arm.Sitting behind Kofi wasn’t that bad in the end, at least I wasn’t sitting upfront driving my camel forward.
I decided to leave that task to Kofi who seemed to be enjoying it.
This way I was free to absorb everything about Zjarri as we journeyed on.
It really was a stunning landscape and I didn’t want to miss a thing.Shortly afterwards I found myself in a dreamy state when I saw a group of bird-like creatures sprinting through the grass ahead of us.
They had feathers like ordinary birds, but that was where the similarity ended.
These birds had long necks and huge round bodies covered with black and white feathers supported by equally long, powerful, muscular legs.
I was amazed, as they ran with graceful speed leaving the vast endless plain behind them.“We definitely don’t have those in Brissa,” I said.“We call them ostriches.
If you’re fast and brave enough to catch one, staying clear of it’s peaking beak, they’re good eating as are their eggs which are the size of rocks.
My Bibi has a fondness for their feathers and decorates her clothes and her hut with them,” Kofi explained with lots of wild hand-gestures.
I nodded, as he continued, enjoying the animated description of his home.
“Lela, look over there!” Kofi exclaimed, pointing to the largest animals I had ever seen.
“Those are elephants.”“Like the elephant fruit?” “Yes.
The elephants enjoy the fruit so much that we couldn’t help but name the fruit after them.” I watched as the mighty creatures ambled along in a long line, one behind the other.
It was my turn to point things out when I spotted a baby elephant among them.
The little one had linked it’s trunk to the tail of the adult elephant in front of it.
“How wonderful is that!” I said, unable to wipe the smile of joy off my face.
“There’s so much more to see!” Kofi echoed my excitement.
Kofi and I sat around the fire that night, feasting on the prize of yet another successful hunt and I couldn’t help but look up at the moon.
It was crescent-shaped and even though it was very far away, it still sat as an imposing reminder of the prophesy in the star-studded night sky.
It was also pure white and dotted with dark areas, unlike the moon in Brissa which was as orange as the sand below it.
Shortly after tonight, I would be looking up at a new moon.
That would mean that I had one moon left in which to find the Four and I felt sick to my stomach at the thought of it.
I downed a cup of kava hoping it would fuel the courage I needed to tell Kofi my story.“The day we met you asked me why I was going to Joro.
I recall avoiding your question.
I didn’t know you at the time and my reasons were very personal.
We’ve been through a lot together over the last day or two and I think I know you enough to trust you with what I’m about to tell you.
I don’t really have much of a choice.
Time is running out and I need your help.”Kofi threw the stripped bones he had been gnawing on into the fire.
Wiping his hands down the front of his crop pants he turned to me.
“Tell me your story,” he urged gently, his full attention now on me.
I swallowed deeply considering my words.
I needed them to sound convincing, anything along those lines would do as long as I didn’t sound insane.“Do you think there are people out there who have the ability to connect directly with the Gaias?” I asked, hoping Kofi was open-minded.
He frowned and looked into the fire, probably contemplating what he should do with me.
My words clearly hadn’t made any sense.
But I needed to get what the Keepers had warned me about, out into the open.
“Anyway,” I continued, “Among the many people that make up the Brissan Clan there lives three wise, old women we call the Keepers of Wind.
They are mystical, curious souls who prefer to live in isolation, staying away from the rest of the Clan.
My father’s people believe these women have a higher connection with Briss, our Wind Mother.
It’s thought they use the ever-changing wind to foresee the future.
The Clan generally undervalues and abuses their abilities, using the old women for blessings, charms and potions or simply asking questions to which they already know the answers.
Growing up, I often found myself in their company, I brought them any food I could spare and, in exchange, they provided me with quiet and calm.
During my visits it was always the same.
The Keepers whispered and mumbled their words, choosing to speak in riddles rather than saying anything that made sense.
However, one day a full moon ago, I witnessed a change in the women.
I saw something that was surreal and I’m not completely sure if my eyes were playing tricks on me.
A different kind of wind picked up and started to swirl around us.
I watched as it entered the women, filling their tired bodies with energy and youth! The Keepers then spoke to me in their usual riddles but this time their words came out crisply and clearly and in altogether different voices.” I shook my head hearing how insane I sounded.
“They spoke about my planned escape and urged me to take the opportunity.
They said that only then would my fate become clear.
The women then went on to tell me that I must find someone called ‘The Four’ and that I need to protect the first Fourborn.”Kofi’s eyes grew wide with interest at my last words.“They told me that I would find the Four in Joro but their foresight came with a warning.
I need to find the Four within two new moons or a great Darkness will consume us all.”“A great darkness you say?” Kofi snickered, the interest disappearing from his dark eyes.
“Don’t you dare treat me like a child, Kofi!” I snapped, jumping to my feet.
“I told you all this in confidence and instead I’ve been made into some camp fire amusement.
I trusted you…” I could feel tears stinging in my eyes but I was determined not to let them fall onto my cheeks.
“It was a joke, Lela, don’t take everything so seriously,” Kofi smiled, holding his hands up in defence.
“It may sound like a joke to you but to me it’s anything but,” I glared.
“You know what? I don’t need your help.
I will continue on my journey alone and I will prevent the prophesy from becoming a reality.
I know deep down that achieving this will give me the life I have been dreaming about.”“You’re a spoilt, gullible girl, living in a dream world.
Wake up, Lela, the real world is right in front of you.
There’s no room for the mystical, it’s ugly and cruel and it has no mercy on people like you! Go back to your father’s people, those savages deserve you,” he hissed, dismissing me.
“You don’t know the first thing about me.
But you’re a fine one to talk.
The boy who’s dream it is to see a sunrise in every land.
You sure aim high!”Kofi glanced at me, hurt by my words.
I didn’t feel anything for his feelings though, he had hurt me too.
The silence between us stretched on forever.
Finally, not being able to stand Kofi’s brooding a moment longer, I stormed off to bed.
I was still angry but at least I could close my eyes while trying to forget the words that had been said over the flames that night.I opened my eyes the following morning and regret hit me in the pit of my stomach.
I felt bad about having lashed out at Kofi the night before.
It was in his easy-going nature to see humour in everything and I had blown the situation out of proportion.
I sat up and was surprised to find Kofi crouching near a newly lit fire instead of in his usual place facing east.
Standing up I approached the fire, warming my hands against the chill in the still morning air.
He didn’t look up at me but continued to poke at the fire with a stick.
I opened my mouth to apologize but thought better of it.
I hadn’t started this argument.
I needed to hear an apology from him.
I continued to watch as he made kava and was surprised when he offered me the tiny cup.
“A peace offering.
Hopefully you can forgive me for my words last night.
It was wrong of me to judge you when I can see how important this is to you.”I reached out for the cup and took a sip before replying.
“I’m sorry too.
I need to learn how to control my actions and words, they just end up hurting people.”Kofi nodded as I passed the cup back to him.
We continued to drink in silence but, this time the silence was comfortable and the feeling it gave me made me laugh out loud.
Kofi looked at me in amazement, but soon also let out one of his huge laughs.
All had been forgiven and for that I was glad.
I cared about Kofi and I wouldn’t allow my temper to ruin our relationship.
“We sure make an odd pair don’t we?” I smiled, sitting down to share the grass mat with him.
“Come on there’s something I want to show you and on the way you can tell me more about the Four.”“Why? I thought you didn’t believe in the mystical?” I asked carefully, while neatly rolling up the mat.
“Because I’ve had the same experience as you have.”And so it was on the back of my camel that I told Kofi everything I knew about the Four which wasn’t that much as the Keepers hadn’t been very forthcoming with the details.
“A person of all four races? I reckon he or she will be easy to find,” said Kofi.“What do you mean?”“They’ll stand out more than you do!” he laughed.
“No offence.”I punched him playfully on the back.“Think about it.
While I’ve never seen someone from Wai before, I have heard the stories.
Some say they have eyes as blue as the sky and hair as yellow as the sun.
While others say their skin is very pale and as transparent as the blade of your dagger.”I couldn’t help laughing at the thought of a person that was translucent.
“This is serious, Lela, concentrate.
Get an image of someone who looks like that in your mind,” Kofi laughed along with me.
“Now think of the most Brissan-looking person you know and then think of me and my beautiful ebony skin and then blend that with a Joran.”I looked over at him puzzled, I had never seen a Joran.“They’re known for their fiery red hair and their very pale skin which is speckled with dark spots of ash.”Creating a human form with all of these physical traits was difficult to get my head around but when an image finally appeared, I couldn’t help but smile.
“Enough of the Four.
Tell me about your experience,” I urged.
I listened carefully to Kofi’s story and compared it with my own experience with the Keepers of Wind.
“The Keeper of Fire told me I’m a guardian and that I need to protect the first Fourborn.
He also mentioned something about the mayi and that she must die.”“The mayi?” I asked, puzzled by the unfamiliar word.“Strange I know but mayi means ‘mother’ in an old Zjarrian dialect.
My grandmother uses the word when describing her own mother all the time.”“Who could the mayi be? The Four’s birth mother? It can’t be.
Why kill someone who is meant to protect?”“I have no idea what I do know however is that I came away from the mountain feeling strange.
It felt like something in me had changed,” Kofi finished, referring to the Keeper of Fire who had locked a hand onto his chest that day in the cave of the Moto Mountain.
I nodded having felt the same change in myself.
“Why didn’t you mention this last night?”“I hadn’t thought about what had happened in the cave until you brought it up last night.
I’ve been too caught up with the excitement of becoming a warrior and then the war took place.” he said, trailing off.
“I don’t normally believe in this sort of thing, Lela, but the things you said last night made me think long and hard.
It can’t be a coincidence that the Keepers of Wind and those of Fire have managed to come up with the same prophesy about the exact same thing, not to mention how fate has thrown us together.” “So I take it we’re going to carry on to Joro to find the Four?”Kofi grinned, nodding.
“I think an adventure is what we’ll have and if we end up finding the Four and saving the world at the same time then all the better.”