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Nights Dawn - Arcanum Black Ops Prequel - EBOOK

Nights Dawn - Arcanum Black Ops Prequel - EBOOK

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PREQUEL for ARCANUM BLACK OPS

Arcanum Agent Rebecca Chance, with her partner and lover Oliver, are sent on a dangerous mission against the Mendez Cartel, but they're not the only ones interested in what the cartel have. 

Magic is dangerous. The Arcanum's mission is to keep the Magical world in the shadows, hidden from mortal eyes. 
But when things get out of hand, the Arcanum send in the Agents of their Black Ops Division, to put things right. 

When Rebecca discovers a drug Cartel has possession of a powerful Magic Book, she and her partner Oliver are sent in to take the book away from them, before they get too powerful. 

But they might have taken on more than even they can handle. 

Nights Dawn is a short story prequel to the Arcanum Black Ops series that begins with Nights Rise, available through Amazon. 

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Assassins
Barranquilla, Colombia

Rebecca stepped out of the Portal and landed on solid ground, her gun up at her shoulder as she scanned the dusty, shadow-filled alleyway. The light from a nearby street cast some meagre illumination into the space between buildings and plots of land she’d appeared in. The passage was deserted and dirty. On either side of them, crumbling walls and rickety fences marked the edges of plots of land. Beyond these meagre barriers stood utilitarian-looking houses, patched up with rotting wooden panels and sheets of rusted metal, surrounded by muddy yards lit by the occasional flickering lamp.
~Clear,~ Rebecca reported in through her Mental Link, and Oliver walked through the Portal behind her, his rifle up and ready like hers.
Rebecca felt the Portal close behind them, its rush of exotic energy rippling through her chest cavity, fading to nothing behind her.
~We’re here and clear,~ Rebecca said to their handler, Paige.
~I hear you Chimera,~ Paige replied as the portal closed behind them. ~We’ll be watching. Good hunting.~
~Copy that, Centaur,~ Rebecca replied using their handler’s codename, as Paige had done to address her.
“Shall we?” Oliver asked. Rebecca turned to him. He was gesturing up the alleyway toward their target house.
“We shall,” she replied, and crept forward, taking the right-hand side of the alley while Oliver took the left. ~Activating Ghost Camo, switching to Link Comms,~ she added as she moved. The Magical effect on her stealth suit initiated, and she all but disappeared from view as it bent light around her.
Glancing left at her partner, he was dressed like she was, in an all-in-one stealth suit, as they were called. They were fitted black catsuits in their basic form, but they were also so much more than that. The Magic that the Arcanum’s Magi had used on them turned them into formidable armour. Your average bullet would do very little to it, protecting the wearer from the worst effects of being shot.
It still hurt like hell, but it was way better than getting shot for real, and that wasn’t the only effect that the suits could have.
As she watched, Oliver's suit seemed to ripple as if underwater, and then fade from view in less than a second. He wasn’t totally invisible. If she looked closely, she could make out the faint human-shaped shimmer that marked his presence, but it wasn’t easy with the naked eye.
Luckily for them both, their eyesight was enhanced. Rebecca wore her Aetheric Shades—black glasses that wrapped around her face and showed her a view of the world that few ever saw.
The Magical Heads Up Display on the inside of her lenses picked Oliver out of the background, but she could also see the ebb and flow of Essentia—Magical Energy—all around her. Oliver’s enchanted gear glowed brightly in her HUD, making him easy for her to spot.
Oliver had a similar view, but he used enchanted contact lenses rather than Shades. It was a personal preference.
Rebecca advanced up the passage at the back of the properties on this block, heading for the marker on her HUD where their target was. As they approached, the alleyway went through a dog-leg bend, obscuring the view ahead. Rebecca edged around and looked up the next stretch.
Leaning against the wall, maybe fifteen metres ahead was a man. He looked bored and was tapping the wall with his fingers to an unheard tune.
~I’m gonna take him,~ Rebecca said to Oliver through their Link.
~Go for it,~ he answered her. ~Covering you.~
~Copy that,~ she answered. With her rifle up and ready, she advanced along the alleyway, minding her step to be as quiet as possible. She made it right up to him without alerting him, aiming for his head.
“Night night,” she muttered.
“Huh?” the man blurted out in surprise as he looked around, hunting for the source of the voice.
She fired.
Pffft.
The Magical silencer did its job, dampening the noise of the rifle to little more than a spit of air. Before her, the man’s head exploded as he fell to the ground, collapsing in a heap.
~Let’s go,~ Oliver said over the link and leapt up the perimeter wall the man had been leaning against.
Rebecca slung her rifle to her side, and with a single leap, her enhanced strength propelled her up to the top of it. Beside her, Oliver fired twice as she landed in the backyard of the property.
Two more guards dropped to the ground where they stood outside the building. With the way forward now safe, Rebecca dropped down and readied her rifle once more as they advanced through the backyard toward the rear of the building.
~Three guards down at the back. They’re all Riven so far,~ Rebecca reported in to her handler.
~Copy that. Keep collateral to a minimum, that’s not why you’re there. Find the target and complete the mission, ideally with no further secondary kills. Orders from Harry,~ Paige replied.
~Copy,~ Rebecca and Oliver both confirmed.
She looked up to the second floor and spotted an open window. ~Let’s skip the ground floor,~ she said, pointing, knowing that Oliver would be able to see her shape in his HUD. He looked at her and then nodded.
~You first,~ he answered, turning to cover the rear.
~Taking point,~ she answered, and jumped once more, making it smoothly onto the windowsill. Inside, the room had several sleeping bags on the floor and other personal items around each one, but there was no one there. ~It’s clear,~ she reported back and dropped through into the room. She moved away from the window just as Oliver appeared in it and then entered the building.
At the door, Rebecca peeked out, looking up and down a hallway, but seeing little in the way of life. She checked her HUD to see where she was on the map of the house. Apparently, the target spent a lot of time in a room on their right. With a last check up the hallway, she stepped out with Oliver in tow. They reached the door without issue, where she pulled out a silencing device and hovered her thumb over the button.
~Ready?~ she asked.
~Of course,~ he replied, facing back up the corridor to cover their six.
Rebecca pressed the button on the small cylinder, and a bubble of total silence snapped into existence around her a second before she kicked out at the door with all her might.
Without making any noise at all, the doorframe splintered as the door slammed open. Clicking off the Silencer, she ran in, dropping the device back into her belt.
The room was maybe ten by twenty metres, dimly lit with paper and litter all over the floor. A couch sat in the middle of the room, facing a large LCD TV that glowed brightly.
A man dressed only in dark slacks, leapt up from the sofa with blood all around his mouth, running onto his chest, and dripping to the floor. He looked around the room, scanning the area around the door with an expression of anger that transformed to one of confusion as he hunted for the intruders.
Rebecca spotted another figure on the couch moving sluggishly, but couldn’t get a clear view.
Looking back at the man, he didn’t seem to be able to spot her or Oliver directly, but he spread his fingers as inch long claws grew from the end of them.
~That’s him,~ she barked through the Link, and fired, pulling the trigger on her rifle and unleashing a stream of Magical metallic death at the man. Oliver opened up on him too. Blood sprayed everywhere as the rounds slammed home, tearing at his torso as he shouted in pain and dropped to the floor.
The figure on the sofa sat up in shock and screamed. Rebecca ran over to the woman and reversing the grip on her gun, hit her in the head with the butt of her rifle.
The woman dropped to the floor and fell silent.
Rebecca gave the woman a moment to see if she’d stand back up, but she didn’t move. Satisfied, she returned her attention back to the target, aiming her gun at him.
She could see Oliver advancing on him as well and peered at the bloody mess on the floor. As they neared, the man sat up, his face a blood-covered horrific mess and roared at them, his teeth bared, and his vampiric fangs extended.
No normal Riven human could have survived their first volley, but this was no human. This was a Scion, a creature of the night, and specifically, a Vampire. One of many that hid in the shadows throughout the world.
They both fired again. The vampire’s skull exploded as they hit him from point-blank range, and he fell to the floor once more.
~They’ll have heard this,~ Rebecca said over the Link.
~Agreed, let’s get out of…~
BOOM!
~What the?~ Rebecca called out, having felt the whole building shake.
~That came from downstairs, that way,~ Oliver said with a tip of his head.
~The front of the building,~ she agreed and ran to the closest window. Figures were running from the street into the house. They didn’t interest her. Instead, her eyes landed on the one man not moving. He stood in the middle of the street, holding an open book.
Through her Aetheric Shades, she could see powerful energies flowing from the tome in the man's hands as he read from it. It was an enchanted artifact. A Magic book.
~Magus?~ Oliver asked from over by the vampire’s body.
~I don’t think so. He’s reading from a book that’s Magical though,~ she explained. These guys and the caster looked like gang members to her with their mismatched clothing and battered AK-47’s.
~Assessment?~ Oliver asked.
~It’ll be the Cartel, come to assert their authority.~
~Makes sense. These guys had it coming, trespassing on Cartel territory comes with consequences, even for those backed up by Nymira and her Nomads.~
~Mmm,~ Rebecca agreed, turning away from the window. ~We’d better go. They’ll be up here in a moment. Is he dead?~
~Gone,~ Oliver confirmed.
~Mission accomplished, then,~ she said and opened the Link to her Handler. ~Portal,~ she called out.
Nearby, black energy burst into existence, revealing a white room beyond it in the middle of the portal.
~Let’s go,~ Rebecca said, and led the way to the Portal, leaving Colombia behind.

About the Author

Hi, I'm Andrew Dobell. Welcome to my website.

I'm the creator of the sprawling multi-series urban fantasy Magi Saga Universe, and the action-packed New Prometheus cyberpunk series.

I'm a storyteller at heart and have always loved creating worlds, characters, and thrilling narratives through both art and words. I enjoy spending my free time with my family and have a keen interest in cinema and genre fiction.

I'm also an artist and have worked for many years as a professional illustrator and cover artist for other authors.
I love creating art based on my novels.

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