Alea is a Game that controls the lives of people known to its Games Masters. It was forged to prove a point: that life is a delicate balance of fate, free-will and determinism.
Alea: The Darkness is set in Cambridge and takes place six months after a malevolent force has taken control of the Game. The Shadow, as it becomes known, is attempting to achieve omnipotence over Cambridge and her inhabitants by engulfing the city in a dark mist which incites violence, destruction and mayhem – seemingly at random – amongst her otherwise peaceful community. The Darkness attacks sever all communication into and out of the city so, as the summer fades and Parliament returns to the newspapers, Cambridge remains terrified and forgotten by an unbelieving country.
The story starts as Sky and Toby seek shelter from an attack in the Old Court of Corpus Christi College. As they hide from a brutal attack on an undergraduate, they fall into a secret chamber hidden behind the sealed door in a corner of the courtyard. They are met by the destroyed inner-sanctum of the Game and the battered body of their English teacher, Mr Jones.
To save their teacher, Sky and Toby take on the mantel of the 249th Games Masters of ‘Alea’. Mr Jones is a Guardian of the Game and, although feeble and bloodied, is able to assist the pair in taking back some control of the Game and away from the Shadow.
But there is a problem. Alea requires three dice to operate and the Shadow has taken them. The first – the black dice – has been hidden inside the slit throat of Dr Lawrence, a Cambridge academic and lecturer at the College. The second – the emerald dice – was plunged into the skull of Professor Blake as his plane spiralled out of control above the Sahara Desert. The third – the ruby dice – was sunk into the heart of Madame La Croix a French teacher from Sky and Toby’s school.
In order for Sky and Toby to play their round of Alea and thereby regain control of the Game from the Shadow, they must first return the dice to the Arena.
Alea: The Darkness tells the story of Sky and Toby’s quest to retrieve the dice, restore them to the game, defeat the Shadow and liberate Cambridge from the clutches of evil.
Read about the final instalment of the ‘Alea’ series at: Alea: London’s Shadow.