Warrior at birth. Warrior at death.

Dark Theory is real. The universe is expanding without Earth, dooming it to wander the void alone. Resources are dwindling and war festers across the blighted planet. Ria, a cyborg slave, is commanded by an implanted governor chip to track down dark matter, which may hold the key to restoring Earth's place in the cosmos. Ria travels with Haldane, a hardened warrior from a parallel dimension. Together, they traverse the horrors of the wastelands, finally reaching the fabled Fifth Kingdom. There they find a nightmarish prison state of dark matter mines ruled by an iron-fisted despot. To achieve their goal, Ria and Haldane must fight to not only win the key to the dark matter mines, but the hearts of an enslaved people. The fate of the universe, and Ria’s freedom, rests on who wins the Fifth Kingdom—and what they do with it.

Dark Kingdom is a new novella by Wick Welker set in the Dark Law world. It is set at about the same time that Beetro is locked in battle with his evil alternate, the robot Curse and primarily features Ria, Haldane and Xy who are members of The Reticulum.

Sent to do a reconnaissance mission to the mines of The Fifth Kingdom by AI leader of the Reticulum, The Singular Her, the group enter the hidden valley where the fifth kingdom lies to find a people enslaved and the leader of the Fifth Kingdom and his minions lording it up over the dispossessed people.

Whilst the story is mainly a redemption arc for one of the characters, the main focus of the book seems to be about the use of enforced labour and the abuse of power. Not only that it deals with how people are conditioned to accept the laws and traditions that are imposed by those in power which effectively leads them to enslave themselves.

So, just to get this straight, this is not a follow up to Dark Theory, but a self contained companion piece to the story with characters that are established in the world.

As usual the story is enthralling and at 130 pages long, the novella is easy enough to read in one sitting. There are some great action packed scenes and the characters are all fantastic. Ria herself is he strongest in the story and her character arc is really good. In addition to that there are some secrets in the book that are good.

Whilst this is only a short novella, it’s a good addition to tide you over until the follow up to Dark Theory comes out. 


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