Cornelius Hightower is an affable fool that writes romances set in a fantasy world full of elemental magic.  The main setting for this author is on the edge of a city-state kingdom that brushes up against a penetrating forest.  The kingdom was founded by firebloods and earthbloods, mages who control both powerful elements.  The forest dwellers are fewer in number, but they train water and air mages, who are easily able to evade capture.

Prequel novellas:

The Baker

PART ONE: A wounded soldier has returned from the Borderlands War.  He helps an orphan girl find food and escape punishment from the street vendors.  Along the way, she forces him cope with his pain and loss.  Together they form an impromptu family, which solidifies when the soldier first encounters the baker’s daughter.  It was love at first sight.

The Mason

PART ONE: A young debutante has a high libido.  She rages against all her prospective marriage partners.  She soils herself in an attempt to escape conformity.  Her father is patient, but his patience is not infinite.  The father doesn’t have the heart to force a bridal on his headstrong daughter.  However, he might be clever enough to arrange for a unique sequence of events to occur that forces his daughter to fall in love.



Half a Love Story as Authored by Cornelius Hightower

A young smuggler with a heart of gold roams the city doing odd-jobs during the dead of night… when nobody can see his blue eyes and dark hair.  One night he spots a shadow climbing down the palace wall, his curiosity is his own undoing.  He watches as the shadow strips to her bare skin, barely visible because of the new moon.  The shadowy woman catches the smuggler by sinking his feet in six inches of stone.  She’s a powerful earthblood.  Thus begins a whirlwind romance between two people from opposite walks of life.  If they can make their relationship work, they might hold the key to ending the decades old Borderlands War.

The Rest of the Story as Authored by Esmeralda Hijinks

Thus continues the love story ten years after the fateful events that brought our two heroes together.  Now, Alfonso is embedded in the guerrilla resistance set to attack the city while the princess is locked in the Inner Veil, unaware of the risk to her life and the life of her children.  Alfonso can either risk his life to save hers, or watch as the woman he loves, and has continued to admire from a distance, is killed in a vicious ambush.  Of course he saves the love of his life, but that action, with all its good intentions, could be the catalyst to lower the two cultures even further into this brutal War.  But the princess sees an opportunity, thin as a wisp of air, to catapult the two bitter, entrenched enemies towards a strong, long-lasting peace that might finally end the bloody Borderlands War.  It is a risk that she cannot ignore.