In the weeks since the Battle of Dianthus, Jag Garrick and Charley Rose have been taking a well-deserved holiday, during which Charley tries to tutor Jag in the basics of magic. But then a summons from the Emperor brings them back to the capital where they find themselves called upon for an important diplomatic mission. A peace treaty between the empires of Dianthus and Krakenbar has been proposed, and the presence of the year's most celebrated hero at the negotiations is requested.
And so it is that Jag and Charley find themselves in Salamanca, the impregnable Krakenbaric fortress-city on the border between the two empires, known commonly as The Devil's Gate. However, there is more to the purported diplomacy than meets the eye, and they will soon be caught up in a secret plot to seize control of the city. Amidst the politics and espionage, they are going to need their allies old and new in order to survive.
Meanwhile, at the Dianthus Mages' Guild College, Avana Solen starts work on her research project. Initially the esoteric and very theoretical discipline of Translocation seemed the least interesting or useful assignment imaginable, but that is all about to change with the discovery of mysterious and incomprehensible devices on board the captured skyship Midnight Blade. Her attempt to find the purpose of this technology will bring her and her brother Aramil to the city states of the Tastella River south of Krakenbar, and eventually even further afield.
Throughout all this the Cult of Maar continue their secret work. Their defeat at Dianthus was a setback, but only a temporary one. Plans to bring the world under the control of their new order continue, and the day of their true invasion draws nearer...
The Devil's Gate explores the cold war between Dianthus and Krakenbar, the reasons for the conflict and the lengths to which the two superpowers are willing to go to achieve dominance. It also sees Jag and Charley dealing with the aftermath of the events of The Two Empires. Are lovestruck heroics really a good foundation for a relationship? Can Jag adjust to his new-found celebrity and those who want to manipulate him for their own purposes? Find out in the thrilling new installment of The Malkovari War, with all the diplomatic intrigue, undercover operations, assassinations, shocking discoveries and skyship chases you could hope for!
There's a lot of editing between what I have now and what I will eventually be willing to release, so we're not quite there yet, but keep checking back here to stay up to date. If you haven't yet got around to reading The Two Empires you probably shouldn't have read all the spoilers above, but there's no better time to pick up a copy! And if you have read it, please do leave a review and tell your friends.