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.
As Kofi and I ran out onto the open plain leaving the Baobab Forest behind us I felt calm and happy for the first time in ages.
I was pleased to know that my mother’s spirit rested in this sacred Forest and that it was in the land of her birth as was right.
It was a relief to know that she wasn’t roaming around the never-ending dunes of the land where she had lost her life.
I smiled at the thought of her swaying in the breeze and hoped that one day I would indeed be worthy enough to join her.
Leaving those thoughts for another day, I turned my attention away from the future and back into the present.
Believe it or not but in all the twenty-one years I’ve been alive, I have never seen rain.
Don’t judge me! Water coming from the sky is an unexplored concept for me.
Since time began my father’s people have always relied on the oases as their only source of water and not once before this had I caught a whiff of the strange watery, slightly dusty smell that filled my nostrils now.
I took a deep breath and decided that I quite liked the smell.
Kofi was right.
It was the best smell in the world even though neither of us had seen all of it yet.
I felt excitement growing in the pit of my stomach at the thought of seeing this great natural phenomenon for the first time.
Hurrying along after Kofi, I looked out over Zjarri and even further until my eyes reached the Kalima Mountains of Joro.
Instantly, my heart sank as my elated mood was shoved aside by intense dread and anxiety when I saw what was coming towards us.
I gazed on as the previously blue sky turned grey and then finally black.
In the midst of the darkness, huge clouds bellowed and brewed towards us and for a moment took on the varying forms of horrible, deadly-looking creatures ready to charge into battle.
I gasped and forced myself to blink the images away.
I let out a slow breath when the creatures blended together, changing back into what they were supposed to be - clouds, no matter how dark and menacing they may have been.“This storm is coming from Joro, isn’t it?” I asked Kofi, hearing a deep rumble from the sky.“Yes, it is,” he replied, looking towards the Kalima Mountains.
“I get a bad feeling that this storm is warning us of what’s to come.”Kofi grinned, “Maybe but all Zjarrian storms start in Joro and, trust me, nothing sinister has ever come from them before.
Don’t worry, what you’re seeing is completely normal.”“You’re right,” I agreed, laughing it off, even though I still felt concerned.
What dangers really lay in wait for us in Joro? “I think we’re as exposed as we can be,” Kofi said, stopping abruptly.
He sank down onto to his haunches and settled down to watch the storm pass overhead.
I looked up and saw that the clouds were directly above us, filling the whole sky.
Suddenly, the breeze turned into a strong, icy wind, blowing my clothes around me.
I quickly crouched down, wrapping my arms around my legs just as a shiver shot up my spine.
The wind was chilly but it cooled the afternoon heat in an instant and I swear I heard Zjarri open up as it sighed in relief.
All at once, the watery, dusty smell became stronger as giant, heavy drops of water began to fall from the sky.
They came down slowly at first but that didn’t last long as the rain soon began to beat down on us.
I hugged my arms tightly around my exposed body.
I was getting wet rather quickly and I was wearing white.
Enough said!Something Kofi had said before confused me.
It was his comment about us moving away from the trees and out into the open.
Why get soaking wet when there were thousands of trees to seek shelter beneath? Just as I was about to ask Kofi to explain himself there was another loud rumble followed by an even louder crack that sent a white flash of powerful energy shooting across the cloudy sky.
It hit one of the tiny-leafed trees just in front of us.
I jumped at both the sound and the sight that this flash made.
Smoke was coming out of the tree and it was then that I realized that finding shelter under one during a storm was only a good idea if you dreamed about experiencing a crispy death.The rumbles, loud cracks and flashes continued for ages and even though we were out in the open, I was still scared of being hit by one of those bolts of energy.
Seeing the worry in my eyes, Kofi reached over to reassure me.
“The thunder and lightning will soon pass over us and then it will be time for the best part.”I was wet and cold and death felt closer with every lightning strike! How could there possibly be a ‘best’ part to all this? But then the black clouds rolled away leaving in their wake, grey ones along with a softer, yet still persistent, rain.
Kofi jumped up the moment this happened and I fell back in shock, the sounds and sights of my first thunderstorm still with me.
Kofi held his head back, letting the rain run over his face and down his well-toned body.
He rubbed his wet face vigorously and then did the same with his bare chest, arms and legs, washing the dust and sweat away.
I knew that if I hadn’t been there he would have comfortably stripped down naked and I blushed at the thought.
The Clan didn’t wash in water.
They didn’t even wash.
Water was far too precious and this sense of freedom was as new to me as the storm.
I reminded myself that I was in Zjarri and that washing in the rain was the normal thing to do here.
I stood up, forcing my inhibitions aside while I let the rain soak my clothes completely.
I closed my eyes to spare both Kofi and myself from embarrassment when he saw that my clothes had suddenly become transparent.
I tried to focus instead on the cool water that ran down my body and I soon felt relaxed.
I tilted my head up to the sky and ran my hands through my wild hair then over my clean face.
I opened my eyes and was surprised when I saw red water running from my kaftan and onto the hard ground beneath my feet.
I smiled at the thought of leaving the red desert dust and my old life with the Clan behind me forever.
I was clean and cleansed and felt reborn.
I let out a childish laugh despite myself, there was nothing to stop me and I had never felt so alive.
The rain continued to fall for quite a while after that, and soon the grey clouds parted and the sun came out, hot and glaringly bright as though nothing had happened.
“Rain is what makes Zjarri thrive without it we wouldn’t be able to survive.
We have pleased Zjarr and she has rewarded us,” Kofi commented, fixing his eyes on the Moto Mountain that sat to the east of us.
“We have waited a long time for this rain but it was all worth it, don’t you think?” he asked turning to me.“I’ve never been so clean or felt so refreshed and I can see the land and the animals feel the same way.
The rain is a blessing and I’m glad to have witnessed it,” I smiled, adjusting my mother’s scarf around my shoulders and chest to cover my modesty while my kaftan dried.
“I think we’ve been through enough for today.
Come, let’s head for that marula tree and set up camp for the night,” Kofi stated, urging my camel forward.
I strolled along, a little behind Kofi feeling the long wet grass brushing against my legs.
I was tired and wasn’t about to argue with him.“It seems like every single animal in Zjarri is on the move,” I said, watching herds, parades and towers of animals crossing the landscape.“They’re searching for water before it gets sucked up by the earth.
Together with the river that we were near yesterday, there are plenty of watering holes in this area.
Fresh water will be plentiful but not for long.”“Will there be enough for us?” I asked in a sudden panic.
My water skin was almost empty.“Don’t worry, I’ll fill your skin while I’m finding something to eat,” Kofi reassured me, laughter dancing in his dark eyes.With our long strides, Kofi and I reached the tree in no time.
Kofi set straight to making a fire from dry twigs and kindling that he had stowed in a saddle bag before the storm had started while I unloaded my camel and set everything out in the sun to dry.
I then put a pot of water near the fire ready for boiling while Kofi went out to hunt.
Having nothing further to do, I stretched out on the dry grass mat and looked up at the grey clouds floating by.
Soon my eyes became heavy and, without intending to, I fell fast asleep.
Sometime later I woke with a sudden start.
I sat up, still drowsy and gasped in astonishment at what I saw.
Staring back at me were a troop of monkeys.
They were the same kind that Kofi had pointed out to me the other day.
They were small with long tails and had grey and white fur together with black little faces.
I counted twelve monkeys in total.
Not moving I just sat back and watched as these creatures carried on staring at me, occasionally taking a break to groom each other.
I took my time getting up.
I didn’t want to scare the troop off, but they just watched me with as much fascination and attention as I gave them.
Reaching for Kofi’s bag I dug around in it for the elephant fruit that it was bound to hold.
He was always collecting the fruit and never stopped eating them.
Just then, Kofi emerged from the tall grass with his usual armful of things - water, food and wood.
At the sight of him the monkeys made a dash for the grass and the surrounding trees.
I pocketed the fruit that I had found and went on to make some kava, not mentioning our guests.
Kofi was crouched over the fire cooking our dinner as I poured the first cup of kava for the evening.
I passed it to him and out of the corner of my eye spotted something edging it’s way out of the grass.
This time I was ready with the fruit which I gently held out to the only monkey brave enough to return.
She, yes, I had decided that the monkey was female, was smaller than the rest of her troop but this didn’t stop her from approaching me.
She wasn’t scared like the others.
I put the fruit down and went back to the fire.
“Don’t feed it, Lela,” Kofi warned, sipping from the tiny cup.
“It won’t leave you alone if you do and monkeys have a nasty bite.”But the monkey didn’t make a move towards the fruit.
Instead, she sat where she was, a little distance away from us and watched our every move.
This strange activity continued for the rest of the evening, the fruit untouched.
I woke up the next morning feeling refreshed after a deep and dreamless sleep.
I rolled over in the little tent and noticed that the monkey was still there.
During the night she had moved closer to me and had fallen fast asleep curled up in a tight ball.
I lay on my side watching her fragile chest rise and fall with every breath.
“It’s been there the whole night.
I told you not to feed it.” Kofi moaned.
It looked like he hadn’t had a wink of sleep.I got up as quietly as I could but my silence wasn’t enough as the monkey’s little head jerked upright and her shiny black eyes stared up at me.“I didn’t feed her, well at least, I tried to but she wouldn’t eat it,” I said, pointing to the still untouched elephant fruit.
“That’s strange,” Kofi remarked.
“These monkeys are very fond of the fruit and most of the time I have to fight them to get my fair share.”“Do you think something is wrong with her?” I asked, looking the animal over.
But what did I know?“Not that I can see,” he shrugged as he looked out over the plains around us.
His attention seemed to be focussed on something else that morning.
The next thing I knew the monkey then ran between my legs and gently climbed up my back to sit on my shoulder.
She didn’t bite or attack me, instead, she just sat there minding her own business.“Ah, look what you’ve done!” Kofi groaned.“Oh stop moaning.
I haven’t done anything.”“But that’s a wild animal, Lela! They are unpredictable and can turn on you at any time!”“I don’t think this one will for some reason and I’ll be happy to look after her as long as she wants to stay.”“That monkey will bring us nothing but shida that I can guarantee!” “Shida? What does that mean?”“Trouble, nothing but trouble.”“That sounds like a good name.” I said, thinking out loud.“What does?”“Shida.”Kofi rolled his eyes, obviously failing to agree with me.