A stunning new epic fantasy which tells of how the rapid development of magic transforms a world. On the world of Erdu it is late in a long, dark age. Everywhere magic is woven into the fabric of society, but it is a low magic of little power. There is a growing sense, though, that all the seperate strands of magic are becoming more developed and powerful. The most learned of the wizards are whispering a word out of the mists of time: the Behel Lus. This is thought to be the single power that feeds the working of all magic. Masters of the greatest guilds begin seeking ways of understanding how the Behel Lus might accomplish such seemingly different feats as making a love charm or calling up a rain cloud. In the air hangs a sense of discovery, excitement and great possibilities. On his eighteenth birthday, the slave Nicholas Medeus overhears a trader describing a magic school where 'men are taught to fly like eagles and summon dragons' and immediately begins planning his escape. Although he manages to steal his owner's fastest horse, he has never ridden before, and his pursuers soon catch up with him.But Nicholas has a talent he was not aware he possessed; just as he is about to be caught he transforms into a wolf. On reaching the school of magic, dirty and half-starved, Nicholas is met with ridicule. But when he manages to summon an eagle he gains the favour of three of the wizards and is admitted to the school. Now begins the growth of the most poweful wizard Erdu has ever seen. Nicholas will eventually come to a deep understanding of the Behel Lus and how it can be used to the benefit of humankind. But he will also gain bitter rivals, with very different ideas.
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