By Colin Falconer

1205AD: Philip of Vercy sails clear of the roasting desolate tract the place he has handed the final yr. As a Knight of the world, he has fought the infidel within the Holy Land. Now, after 12 months of savage, bloody battle within the hot solar, he's ultimately coming domestic to his fort, to peace, and to his loved spouse.

But France bargains neither convenience or peace. His spouse has died in childbirth, his younger son is demise of a losing ailment, and, within the south, his Cathar countrymen are being brutally persecuted. while Philip hears rumours of a healer within the Languedoc, a tender girl blessed by way of God and marked with Christ's Stigmata, he rides out on a determined quest to save lots of his son. His trip takes him right into a imaginative and prescient of hell that outstrips even what he observed in Outremer.

Disgusted by means of the mindless slaughter, Philip progressively turns into embroiled within the Cathar reason. after which he unearths his miracle: Fabrisse Berenger, the gorgeous, loving daughter of Cathar mom and dad. She is bewildered by means of her unusual wounds, yet Philip is interested by them...and extra excited about the serene goodness of Fabricia herself.

Together, the pair needs to flee persecution lower than disguise of darkness - yet they can't carry off the Pope's squaddies perpetually. Their future might be determined within the snows of the Black Mountains the place Fabricia and Philip needs to make offerings not only to save lots of their lives, yet their souls.

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The troubadours should still prefer to make a ballad for you. what's it you need from us? ’ ‘I am right here on the behest of Raimon Perella, moment cousin to viscount Roger-Raymond Trencavel. i've got introduced embassy to count number Raymond. ’ ‘I am afraid that count number Raymond isn't almost immediately right here in Toulouse. ’ Philip’s shoulders sagged. ‘You had no longer heard this information? ’ ‘I have ridden evening and day below escort from Montaillet. ’ ‘Which is below siege, i'm advised. ’ ‘We rode via their strains lower than disguise of darkness. ’ ‘That used to be very .

A few of them stopped and knelt down and murmured thank you and left her anything: nutrition, a number of cash; one service provider left her a hoop. Others overlooked her, or hissed curses. They filed out until eventually the final of the refugees have been long gone, and the cave fell silent. The carts and bundles they'd left at the back of littered the sandy ground of the cave. Now there has been simply the 3 of them. Father Marty snored in his sleep. outdated Bruna used to be so silent she inspiration she used to be already lifeless. because the gentle grew improved Fabricia observed a guy silhouetted opposed to the mouth of the cave.

Godfroi needs to comprehend that if it turned identified what he had performed, it is going to no longer cross good for him. but it needs to look a danger worthy taking. in the event that they had stayed with him they confronted convinced doom. If existence was once extra vital to them than honour, then he had given them no selection. He regarded round for the way out of this darkish little field the place that they had deserted him. there has been a gap within the roof yet he doubted that he might succeed in it. there has been, although, a round opaque window, set in lead, correct above the altar, and he puzzled if he could climb via that.

Philip slumped to his haunches and took off his helm. He closed his eyes and rested his head opposed to the wall. Trencavel’s squaddies have been already dragging the our bodies of the lifeless crusaders around the courtyard, tossing them over the northern wall into the gorge. Get them out sooner than they bloat and stink. And rattling all of them. At one element that they had had their ladders at the gatehouse and the battering ram on the major gate. He had notion it used to be over. It used to be the ladies and the outdated males that kept them, pouring pitch and boiling water from the barbican, tipping again the ladders, making up in numbers and exuberance what they lacked in archers and crossbows and men-at-arms.

They have been beginning to itch. ’ He smiled. ‘I have anything very important to . . . let you know. ’ He enable her cross, exhausted from this small exertion and his hand dropped again to his aspect. ‘Tell me then. ’ ‘I stumbled on . . . your father and mother. ’ Fabricia stuck her breath. ‘Where? they're alive and good? ’ ‘They are alive. due to the valour of . . . the boys I rode with. They have been attacked through crusaders yet survived. they're on their technique to a spot . . . they known as Montaillet. ’ ‘You talked to them? ’ ‘Of direction. They informed me you have been at a monastery referred to as Montmercy.

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