First Page Review: Spellbloom

Hey everyone, and hello to first page review! Always exciting to get a little bit of feedback on the first few words of a story. This is taken from the first story I ever thought out and wrote down, titled Spellbloom, a contemporary fantasy tale. It is the one story closest to my heart, but it is yet to be finished on paper. I'm so hestitant when it comes to writing this story. In the hopes of getting more experienced at storytelling, I never want to touch it to not spoil it with mediocre writing, if that makes any sense. :) I started writing it two years ago, and I'm not even halfway finished, but I edited bits and pieces of it. The picture you see is a home-brewed graphic experiment that may or may not be the real cover for the book one day. 

Looking forward to reading your comments and suggestions and I can't wait to visit your blogs and to read your stories. :)


Pador stared at the portrait in silence. The face in the picture frame stared back at him. He knew that the years had given him a few hard lines around the mouth, and the painter hadn’t wasted any time sugar-coating the truth.
The people of Indova called Pador rigorous, a man purported to rule with a strict vision of things that needed to be done. He had never seen himself that way. The things to be done most rarely are what everyone agrees with, his father used to say. Unlike Pador, he had been the leader of a family of 4, not millions. Pador sighed.

At least in the picture he looked the part of the leader, Pador thought, carrying the bearings of Indova on his chest, the blue cloak hovering over the black cliffs of the Seam, the traditional symbol for the first Mage Rebellion nearly 300 years ago. His ancestors had fought in that battle, and many of them had lost their lives.

He had always worn his blue cloak with pride, ever since the day he got elected. He had made a name for himself in the Academy, and he was a reasonable choice for the Council. The fact that he didn't want the job was of little importance and just went to show how the laws of Indova bestowed all power upon the election committee. The committee had seen aptitude and farsightedness in equal measure in him, and none of the other candidates. Sometimes Pador still thought they'd made a terrible mistake choosing him, but his advisor had told him that his doubts proved him to be the right choice all the more. 

Pador knew his duties, and well enough to realize that anyone would have a hard time ruling a country, at least if he tried to do it well. Sometimes however he caught himself thinking that there might be someone out there who would enjoy it more than he did. He sighed again, a heavy and deep sigh – resonating back at him from the walls of the hallway. He turned around to go back to his office. He longed for this day to be over, but it wasn’t even close to noon. He had several ministers to meet still, representatives to greet with a smile on his face and their pleas to suffer through. He would be able to visit Janey thereafter – if it wasn’t too late in the day. He had been looking forward to seeing her all week, yet he hated visitation days because they would only sound in another 6 long days of waiting. He missed the times when he saw her each day, the times when they were freshmen in the Academy and their assignments would bring them to different places all across Fallwyne. He was a better man with her by his side, always, and a happier one, but unfortunately, there were other things to consider, more important things such as her health. Janey was his wife and he loved her dearly, but he couldn’t risk exposing herself to him more than once a week. He was poison to her, and she needed all the time she could get to recover from his visits. It was the only way they could be together at all.

Pador opened the large wooden door to his office and saw Aeron sitting in one of the high visitor’s chairs. He got up to greet him as he saw him enter, “Ah, there you are”. His black cloak swirled as he rose. Pador always thought that there was no one who wore the Guardian’s cloak as well as Aeron, although there certainly were Guardians who took their responsibilities more seriously than he did. They had been friends for over a decade, and now wasn’t the time to question his work ethic. 
“Do you have a minute or two?” Pador knew, that, with Aeron, it would never only take a minute or two, but he nodded.   
“What’s going on?” he closed the door behind him. Aeron sat down again, this time on the corner of Pador’s large writing desk, in between red document folders and a pile of mail.
“Wintershedge has sent word of their arrival.”
Apparently the girl has already fallen ill with the bloom.”
“What!? Oh no!” Pador was dismayed at these news. He started pacing up and down the room.
“How bad is it?”
Aeron hesitated. “She’s…functional, but very weak. The journey was exhausting for her.”
“Is she bedridden?”
“Unfortunately yes.”
“Good gods.. how did this happen so quickly?”
Pador massaged the few stubbles on his chin. “That’s bad…  I shouldn’t have sent them away together..”
“Don’t be too hard on yourself, we don’t know the details. There is still a possibility that she’s just sick with some other illness.
“Please,” Pador said, “you know as well as I that there is no one better suited to judge the onsets of second bloom than their people.”
Aeron didn’t respond. 
“We should offer to help them, bring them back to the city after…. they are done..” He sat down. The regent's chair was heavy and cumbersome.
"I had no right..."
He felt Aeron’s hand on his shoulder moments later.
“You did it for Janey.”