Saga of Halldor of Mortaluna
Publisher: Netopejr in cooperation with Golem Ríša
Release Date: 2004
Cover. Jana Šouflová
Illustrations: Lukáš Junek
It got a little bit complicated with The Saga of Halldor of Mortaluna. It was completed in 1999 and should have been released the following year. However the publishing house Netopejr delayed its publication until the year of 2004 without any reason or explanation. The book was illustrated by a student attending art centred study programme at Gymnázium (grammar school) Na Pražačce named Lukáš Junek whom I used to teach history. I had chosen him because of his minutely descriptive drawing style (similar to mine) but he could better depict motion and proportions. Lukáš then graduated from AVU (Academy of Art) his subject being renovating.
Halldor was one of the sons of the knights of the duke Aurix and as a small boy went through the page service in the ducal castle. When he was fourteen, his father called him up back home to the Mortaluna Castle. On his way, Halldor found a helmet in a slaughtered village and he took it with him. After several years, inside the helmet he found a hidden message saying that the one who will read it is obliged to revenge all the dead from the village. However, people didn’t caused the massacre – actually they were not alive anymore but their dead bodies were under control of mysterious creatures. On an impulse of Arambegil, the vědma (there is no word with the same meaning in English: vědma is somebody between fortune-teller, white witch and healer), Halldor set on a journey to find the Reborn - men who were reborn after their death and who could have some experience with the Bodies. Finally, he found five Reborns, who were willing to set out to the Rocks with him and fight the Bodies, namely Aralt, a boy, Hrapnhir and Skettrakin, the twins, Vigfús, the hothead, and the handsome knight Arslan. Halldor came back alone from the Rocks, the rest were beaten by the Bodies, yet their mission was successful. They found out why the Bodies used to drag living people to the Rocks: they would feed a strange egg with their blood. Arambegil discovered that it was a dragon egg, an offspring of the daughter of the first Lord of the Dragons and the god Getenek. If the thing that was growing inside the egg hatched it would cause destruction of Éllad. The egg had to be destroyed – but together with its twin egg laid by a female dragon in the northern Skátrávíd. So Halldor had no choice but to set off for the twin egg together with his younger brother Halldrin. Halldrin reluctantly left for Skátrávíd since he had to suspend his study at Aagenor, the magician. Although Halldor made some troubles in the beginning, eventually it turned out that Arambegil’s decision that Halldrin should go to Skátrávíd was very reasonable. If it wasn’t for Halldrin, Halldor would probably die either in the Brynnveled Swamps or would certainly not survive the execution in Golfadur. Halldor and Halldrin succeeded in gaining the egg (although Halldor had to become a girl for a short time) and after their return to the Land of Éllad they destroyed it. In Skátrávíd, Halldrin obtained much stronger magical skills he could ever think of but Halldor left his heart there……
(Translation: Tereza Štěpánová)