The Sorceress of London A novel

London, England, 1632.

In the 17th century, Ronan Shipp, a servant-boy, finds out that a mysterious Sorceress of the Black Arts, Lady Andrea Hart, has powerful supernatural powers. When he meets her, their worlds collide...ending in a battle of wills that challenges his belief in magic.

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1. London, England, 1632

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Ronan Shipp was a dreamer.

He slept in a mound of yellow hay in the hot barn. He glanced at the iron rod that was on the spidery walls of the rafters; he slept soundly, as dark clouds hovered above the dreary London sky. He glanced at the old man. "Edmond, what's the time?", he asked him. Edmond, who was seventy, saw the morning sun. "Seven o'clock", he answered him. He yawned, then he walked towards the long, cobbled, road. Several black carriages were on the road. A tall, thin, man in his early thirties, strode forward in a long stride. "Boy, come to me now". Ronan sighed. He hated authority; he loathed it. "What do you want, Sir?", he asked him. "Don't be arrogant. I won't here of it", he answered. Ronan, who was thirteen, had laboured all day the previous time in which he wished his mother and father would stop nagging their son over work. At his age, he was scared of Master Grain, the elderly English Teacher, who told him off for being lazy. Ronan shook his head. He wore a black cloak, grey breeches, and brown boots on his small feet. On his left hand was a red coloured ring that he won at the gambling dens with his Uncle Richard for three pounds.

"What do you want, Sir?", Ronan asked him.

"I want you to go to The Shoal Woods where the Sorceress lives. There's a sword that I want you to get, and give to me", the man said. Ronan shook his head. "The Shoal Woods are full of orcs, dwarves, trolls, and wolves. I'd die there. And I'm not a gallant Knight; I'm a barn boy", he said. "You're hired because I have faith in you". Ronan shrugged. He nodded. "How many gold coins....", he begun to say.

"Three hundred", the man answered him.

And Ronan smiled...and agreed to go to the long journey...alone.

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