Lord Layne Nevell

Lord Layne Nevell of Aruam Castle

Human, healer, first appeared in chapter 14 in Shadows in the Stone

The pungent smell of drying burdock pervaded the small room. Although Lord Layne Nevell’s patients criticized the odour, clusters of the drying herb hung in every room of the Infirmary. The plant remained for the patient’s mental stability as much as for Layne’s state of mind. It was the only element he had found to keep his thoughts clear and focussed. After a few days in the Infirmary his patients sensed a change in their judgement and ceased complaining.

“My lord, may I have a glass of water?” The young, human guard, wounded by a recent attack by one of Lindrum’s henchmen, rested in a cot. A bandage covered his head.

Table 02“Of course.” Layne retrieved the water and set it on the bedside table. “How is the pain?”

“Better.” He took a drink. “I’m the lucky one.”

Layne nodded. Two other guards were not so lucky. “If you need anything further, ring the bell.” He left the room and walked towards his desk at the end of the hallway. He glanced in at his patients as he passed. Most were near sleep or sleeping. When he reached his desk, he found his apprentice making notes in the daily ledger.

“Rhiannon, I believed you’d gone home,” he said.

“It’s next on my list.” The dwarf smiled up at him. “Only a few more items to record.”

Layne admired the woman’s spirit, but he knew there was more to her dedication than could be perceived by those who saw her working at the Infirmary. To others, she designed dresses during the day and assisted with the ailing in the evenings as a kind gesture. Layne and Rhiannon’s mum knew otherwise. He foresaw a great future for her, which meant good fortune for Aruam Castle. For everyone’s safety, this could never be revealed.


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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