• C. L. Schneider

Indie Book Spotlight: The Lost Unicorn, by Tyson Colman



Blurb


When Cassarn Trelorne, a young Australian archaeologist, is offered her dream job working as an assistant on an excavation in Germany, she is excited beyond belief. However, she soon realises that there’s an adventure with a greater destiny awaiting her. After a series of extraordinary events, Cassarn is amazed to discover that the old tales of magick, monsters, and mythical creatures are all true. Unicorns are real, and she’s caught up in the middle of a centuries-long hunt.




Excerpt


Chapter 1


Sydney, Australia. Present Day.


Cassarn groped for her iPhone, the ever-annoying sounds of the ‘Marimba’ alarm ringing in her

ears. She half-opened one eye and squinted at the time. It was 4.27 am. Damn! she thought to

herself. She had just half an hour to get ready. Today was the beginning of her new, exciting life. She had just been accepted to work at The Harz Museum, in Wernigerode, Germany. She went to the bathroom then stepped into the shower. The hot water stung her skin and quickly forced her to wake up. She was already packed and had been, in fact, for over two weeks. She had packed and repacked her suitcase so many times that she could count the items if she closed her eyes. As she stepped from the shower, she glanced at her reflection in the fogged-up mirror. She looked tired.


‘God, I look awful,’ she muttered to herself.


Her shoulder-length brown hair hung limply about her face and looked somewhat like strands

of wholemeal spaghetti. Her eyes were red and bloodshot. The only consolation was that the

redness brought out the green-hazel colour of her eyes. She battered her eyelashes at her reflection and giggled.


‘Ooh, that’s sexy,’ she said in a sarcastic tone and a bad impersonation of Fat Bastard, the

Scottish character from the Austin Powers movies. While she tried to bring some semblance of

order to hair and make-up, Marmaduke, her cat, was purring and rubbing himself against her leg. She had saved him from an animal shelter in Bondi when he was just a kitten, and they had been inseparable since.


‘Good morning, Marmaduke,’ she said, ‘I’ll sort out your breakfast once I’ve had a coffee—or

several.’


Cassarn had originally wanted to call the cat Garfield, as he was an orange and brown tabby,

but she had always thought that the cartoon cat was lazy and rude, so she had named him

Marmaduke instead. The first sip of coffee wet her lips, and she sighed, planting herself into her favourite reading chair.


‘Truly a gift from the gods,’ she said as she sipped the hot, sweet beverage. Marmaduke was

happily eating canned tuna, as she had again forgotten to buy cat biscuits. ‘I’m going to miss you, little mate,’ she remarked as she watched him scoffing down the food. ‘You’ll love living with Mum. She’ll spoil you rotten, and I’ll probably have to put you on a diet when I get home.’


Marmaduke meowed quietly in agreement. By the time she finished her second cup of coffee,

she was nearly ready to leave. A pair of jeans, a light blue blouse, and a cardigan—she knew it

would be cold in Germany– and she was dressed. It would be a long flight, so she was dressed for comfort, rather than style. But that was how she preferred to dress, anyway. High fashion and expensive clothes had never interested her. Cassarn had always been a tomboy. Some of her earliest recollections had been of driving tractors, climbing trees, and chasing wallabies through the scrub. During her teenage years, while many of her friends were studying dance, attending cooking classes, and chasing after boys, Cassarn was attending taekwondo lessons at the local PCYC. By the time she was seventeen, she had achieved her black belt and was free-sparring men twice her size.


She had grown up on a small cattle station in Queensland, Australia. By small, it meant that her

dad’s property was only a couple of thousand acres. Bigger properties, which were common in

Australia, often covered thousands to millions of acres. Wolarra Station, as her great-grandfather had named it, was a beautiful place with more water than most. It was the water that had attracted her great-grandfather to the property in the late 1800s. He had always said, ‘When the bigger properties run dry, we’ll be fine.’ He had been proven correct countless times over the years, with many of the neighbouring properties having to rely on a share of the water from Wolarra Station to keep their stock alive. The fact that her family had never charged anyone a cent for the water meant that they were held in very high regard throughout the area. She had once heard her grandfather tell a friend, ‘It is only by the grace of God that we have this place. A flip of the coin, and it might have been us without water.’ Cassarn’s father had told her that Wolarra was the aboriginal name for a flower that grew near the billabong. He was constantly annoyed at her when she repeatedly told him that there was no historical or scientific evidence of the word, and that someone had just made it up. During an unnecessary teen argument, she had once told her father that Wolarra meant ‘smells like cow shit’ after she spoke to the local indigenous people, and they had laughed at her, telling her it was a ‘white fella word’. Marmaduke pushing the empty food bowl around snapped her quickly back to reality. She now had only fifteen minutes before her best friend Megan was coming over to

take her to the airport. She had met Megan just after she moved to Sydney to go to university. They were studying completely different subjects: Cassarn was studying archaeology, whilst Megan was studying computer science. They had met at the university cafeteria and clicked instantly after Megan, who was of Chinese descent, had told the lady serving food that the dim sims tasted like mothballs. Cassarn, who had been standing behind Megan in the line, had laughed at the comment (the dim sums did taste like mothballs), and the two had then giggled together all throughout lunch. Since then, they had become inseparable friends and companions, with Megan spending many nights on Cassarn’s couch to get away from her well-meaning but overbearing parents. Many times, they had discussed Megan moving out of her parents’ house and moving in with Cassarn.



About the Author



From the Gold Coast, Australia, Tyson has always been interested in writing stories. After reading the Lord of the Rings books at the age of twelve, he became fascinated by the Fantasy genre. Inspired by Author's like J. R. R. Tolkien, C.S Lewis, Julian May, J.K Rowling and Traci Harding, Tyson set out to create his own world of Magick, Monsters, Heroes and Heroines. An earlier partially finished manuscript, written by Tyson, parked the initial ideas, and thus set the scene for The Lost Unicorn. Tyson has worked for twenty five years as a Singer Songwriter and now has also channelled his creative expression and love of prose, into his new novel.





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