Return to Del (Deltora Quest, Book 8)
The seven lost gems have been restored to the Belt of Deltora. Now Lief, Barda, and Jasmine must find the heir to the kingdom's throne. They know that only the true heir can use the Belt's magic to overthrow the evil Shadow Lord. But the heir has been in deepest hiding from birth and only the Belt can reveal the hiding place. Shock follows shock as the Deltora quest rushes to its thundering climax, and the fury and power of the Shadow Lord himself threaten to destroy its three heroes and everything they love.
know.” His mouth tightened. “Now I regret my suspicion that you were working against our cause. But —” He ran his lean brown hands through his tangled hair. “Can it be true that this — this legend made real — can help Deltora? Perhaps, long ago, in the years that are dark to me, I would have accepted such a tale. But as it is —” “You must believe!” Jasmine burst out. “The Shadow Lord himself fears the Belt. That is why the gems were taken and hidden in the first place!” Doom regarded her
know the price of rebellion. And so they did. Once or twice a year they saw terrible sights at the Place of Punishment, and in between those times it remained a constant reminder. The ground below it was heaped with bones. The wall was spiked with skulls. And the edge of the platform itself was hung with a thick fringe of dangling, rotting bodies, each branded with the Shadow Lord’s mark. “People of Del! Behold these traitors!” Lief gripped his sword as the thin, penetrating voice echoed
shrivelled hearts in the market square, where at last Steven was climbing from the pit. As had Ichabod, sprawled like a drained sack of red skin over the gnawed bones of his last meal. And so it would be now, all over the land. As the radiance of the Belt filled Lief, his eyes seemed to pierce darkness and distance. From Raladin to Rithmere, from Dread Mountain to the Valley of the Lost, from Broad River to Withick Mire, fear was vanishing. Throughout Deltora people were seeing their enemies
contact with the Shadow Lord. Dain told us that Doom suspected there was a spy in the Resistance. This proves it.” “Glock!” hissed Jasmine with loathing. “Or Jinks himself,” Barda muttered. “It could be anyone.” “Yes,” said Lief, glancing again at the sleeping figures of Dain and Doom. “It could be anyone at all.” Noiselessly, the companions gathered their belongings and stole out of the clearing. In moments they were moving along the stream, towards the valley’s end. They knew that it
danger,” he went on. “The queen was expecting a child. It is quite likely, then, that the pair sought refuge nearby — somewhere between Del and the Valley of the Lost.” A shiver ran up Lief’s spine. Their quest had taken them in a great circle, bringing them back to the area where the heir was most likely to be. Somewhere to the west of Del. A quiet place, where Endon and Sharn could bring up their child unnoticed. Something twitched at the corner of his mind. A memory of something he had