“What’s going on?” asked Ganix.
“A show. That’s Hurlock. He’s famous around here because of his magic.” Luke shook his head. “It’s sad.”
While Ganix watched, purple fire bloomed in the magician’s bare hands, and he sent it whirling over his head. The flames turned into a dragon that twisted through the air. Shoppers stopped to stare. Some clapped. And a few tossed coins into a basket at the edge of the stage. Hurlock thanked them with a gentle smile.
“Sad? He’s amazing!”
“He is. But purple fire means a sad day for Hurlock. Can you see his feet?”
Standing up to get a better look, Ganix asked, “Are those chains?”
—Byways #7: Across the Line: A Ganix Johns Adventure
Ganix Johns is the youngest son of Liberty’s Postmaster. Up until this point in the storyline, he’s been changing traveling partners at every waypoint. But when he meets an enslaved magician in Book #7, Ganix risks everything (including the race) in order to stage a rescue.
Hurlock is a valuable asset to his owner because he has a dynasty level talent: fire magic. Even so, he’s reduced to little more than a street performer in the market.
Natrually, Hurlock won’t go anywhere without his wife. Galena is also a slave, but she’s in even more trouble than her husband. Their owner has sold her to an overseas estate. Within days, they’ll be parted forever.
After all the excitement in Across the Line, Ganix isn’t just in a race. He’s on the run. And for the first time in his life, he has someone else’s happiness to think about.