Maisie Darrow

Maisie Darrow

Dwarf, owner of Forest Bakery and Herb Shop, first appeared in 01 in Shadows in the Stone 

Through hidden vales little dwarf feet go,

Trailing their Kintale spirit safety home.

From ancient times it carried them afar,

To Rhunestone Castle on The Headlands of Mar.

Stay true to the magic inside, your kin and the past,

And let swift wings carry you home at last.

Maisie Darrow hummed the ancient song, taught to her by her mum, as she poured the mixture of dry ingredients into the large bowl. The wooden spoon scraped the inside, drawing together the contents. She had baked these muffins thousands of times over the years. They had always enticed a smile. Since her son left Maskil, the recipe now generated only apprehension.

Kitchen BakingFenberry muffins were Bronwyn’s favourite. As a boy, he could smell them as he entered their dwelling and would rush to the kitchen to snatch one from the cooling plate. To return to those days for a short time would bring delights no magic could surpass.

Maisie sighed heavily. Six moons passed since Bronwyn had left in search of his daughter Isla. Each morning Maisie rose hoping this would be the day he’d walk through the door with Isla in his arms. But each evening, she hesitantly blew out the candle, forced to face another day without news.

If Bronwyn arrived now, he’d soon be welcomed with his favourite treat. His jovial expression would erase the fear for his well-being that harboured in her heart.

Maisie dispersed the batter into the pockets of the baking pan and slipped it into the oven. She glanced towards the door; the first hint of the morning sun kissed the glass. She softly repeated her favourite lines, hoping it would speed her son’s return.

Stay true to the magic inside, your kin and the past,

And let swift wings carry you home at last.


Castle Keepers Vignette: Almost five years has passed since Isla was kidnapped and Bronwyn left Maskil in search of her. In many ways, not much has happened; the inhabitants of the Land of Ath-o’Lea have continued their daily routine. But if you look deeper into the individual lives you’ll see much has changed in little ways.

The Castle Keeper vignettes provide a glimpse into the time between Shadows in the Stone and Scattered Stones. You’ll have already met many of the characters, but some you will meet in Scattered Stones.

These vignettes won’t be complete stories, only 300 words of a moment. I consider them exercises in writing and editing. I hope to write two a week and post them on Mondays and Thursdays as we lead up to the release of Scattered Stones, the second fantasy novel of the Castle Keepers series, on May 6, 2016.

The collection of vignettes will be organised on the Castle Keepers Vignettes page. On the first of each month, I will post the schedule of the characters I will write about that month.

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