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About the author

Andrew Dickerson started writing books at the age of eighteen, due to his love of stories and storytelling. Thronegarden is his first published novel. He lives with his family in Northamptonshire.











Andrew Dickerson


Vanguard Press



© Copyright 2021

Andrew Dickerson

The right of Andrew Dickerson to be identified as author of

this work has been asserted by him in accordance with the

Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.

All Rights Reserved

No reproduction, copy or transmission of this publication

may be made without written permission.

No paragraph of this publication may be reproduced,

copied or transmitted save with the written permission of the publisher, or in accordance with the provisions

of the Copyright Act 1956 (as amended).

Any person who commits any unauthorised act in relation to

this publication may be liable to criminal

prosecution and civil claims for damages.

A CIP catalogue record for this title is

available from the British Library.


978 1 784659 56 1


Vanguard Press is an imprint of

Pegasus Elliot MacKenzie Publishers Ltd.


First Published in 2021

Vanguard Press

Sheraton House Castle Park

Cambridge England

Printed & Bound in Great Britain



In memory of Jenny…

for the inspiration and the magic.


Once upon a time there was a kingdom called Fable, made up of multiple gardens. It was ruled by a king and his name was Death. The denizens of Fable were subject to Death’s most powerful weapon – Time. For Death had a magical timepiece crafted by the legendary smith Bakka. The timepiece held the fate of each person, and when it chimed with the voice of Sereth, Death would come for that individual. Death ruled unchallenged for centuries until a powerful mage came to provenance in the Magicgarden. The new sorcerer called himself the Fairy King. However powerful the magician became, he still feared Death’s power over him. So the Fairy King decided to steal Death’s timepiece. He snuck into Death’s castle late one night when the moon was new. Death had become complacent in his reign, yet the king was far from powerless. Death noticed the intruder at the last moment, and for a second the two regents just stared at each other before both monarchs reacted. the Fairy King desperately reached for the prized timepiece, while Death grabbed for his scythe. Death reached his target a split second ahead, swinging the weapon’s blade directly into his challenger’s heart. Despite the mortal blow, the Fairy King held the timepiece in his hand and with it the succession.

Death fled into the dark night defeated, while the Fairy King began his cruel reign. Whether it was the wound to his heart or a corruption of power, the Fairy King became a tyrant to the people of Fable. The Fairy King’s tyranny brought an uprising, which united all the gardens. The leaders of the rebellion were brothers Abeldine and Handel Thrane, while the insurgents unified all the races, creatures and spirits of each and every garden. Against such a mob even the Fairy King’s magic was insufficient; however, the regent could not be killed due to Death’s expulsion, so instead he was exiled into a long-forgotten place known as the Evergarden.

With the Fairy King usurped, the House of Thrane took residence in the highest garden which they gave their own name, Thronegarden. The Fairy King had one final legacy. Before his capture, the fallen leader deliberately damaged the timepiece, stopping time, so that when he escaped exile he could continue exactly where he left off. Despite this the people celebrated their new king and the defeat of Death, though without the passage of time, things began to stagnate and decay. Other pretenders to the throne came and went, with offenders sent to exile in the Evergarden. When King Abeldine lost his mind, his brother Handel took over with his beautiful queen and young daughter, the princess Damselfly.

Chapter 1 The Strangest of Times

“Please read it again, Mother,” Princess Damselfly pleaded.

“You have heard it a hundred times,” laughed Queen Etherelle, tucking her daughter into bed.

“Then tell me the story about the Lady of the Lake and the Moon.”

“It is time for bed,” the queen replied.

“I’m not tired,” Damselfly managed between yawning.

Queen Etherelle stroked her daughter’s red hair while perching on the bed. “I have never known a child so fond of old tales,” she smiled.

“When I’m older I want to have great adventures like the people in your stories,” Damselfly stated.

“One day maybe, for now I want you to stay my little angel for a little bit longer.”

The queen leant forward to place a kiss on her only child’s forehead. When she pulled back, it was clear from her daughter’s expression that something was wrong.

“Are you all right?”

“Will I ever grow up, Mummy?” Damselfly asked.

When the Fairy King destroyed Death’s timepiece, all time had stopped; there was no day or night in Thronegarden, just a continuing early evening.

“Things will get better,” the queen promised.

“When will I be old enough to go on adventures?” Damselfly bemoaned.

“I have been twelve and a half years old for what seems like eternity. I don’t even remember my last birthday party.”

“Oh, sweetheart,” the queen sympathised.

“I remember that day like it was yesterday. Your father brought poets from Rhymegarden, acrobats from Treetopgarden and sorcerers from Magicgarden. That is when we first met your Aunt Luyna and Uncle Orion.”

Damselfly pulled a face at this memory, although her mother seemed to be lost in her thoughts for once.

“They’re not really my aunt and uncle,” Damselfly commented.

“No, but they’re like family and your father needs them to help him run the kingdom,” Queen Etherelle responded.

Damselfly tried to avoid Luyna

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