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Born of Metal

Born of Metal

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A powerful artifact, a secret society, an ancient evil. Can Ibby embrace her destiny as Inconquo guardian before an ages-old demon is unleashed on London?

Ibby’s parents gave up everything for a chance at a better life. So, after a terrible accident leaves her alone in London, Ibby works her internship at the British Museum and goes to her classes to make them proud.

But when Ibby finds a strange artifact and encounters a mysterious professor in the bowels of the museum, she learns that her lineage means bigger responsibilities than good grades.

Training in the secrecy of a ghostly underground tube station defunct since 1933, her waking powers means Ibby must face the wrath of a titan with a vendetta against her kind...and she has to do it alone.

If you love strong female characters and millennia old secrets, you’ll love the origin story of Ibukun Bashir, metal elemental.

Enjoy Born of Metal today and experience a wild ride and the forging of a modern legend! Welcome to the world of the Inconquo.

set in London, UK

✨ found family

✨ discovering powers

✨ archaeology

✨ ghosts

✨ alternative history

✨ b@da$$ female protagonist

✨ secondary sweet romance

✨ urban fantasy with a hint of military sci-fi

✨ lovable heroine

Intro to Chapter One

I checked the status icon next to Uncle Irshad’s smiling face.

Grey: inactive.

I gave a long, sputtering sigh and sank back into what passed for my love seat, fingers tightening around a cup of cooling tea.

“No news is good news,” I told myself, but I hated the patronising words as soon as I said them.

For Uncle Irshad Bashir — like so many others in Sudan — no news could just as easily mean something truly terrible. Militias, famine and plague had taken more than one could imagine from so many people in the homeland of my parents. Though Uncle Iry was always smiling during our chats, even he couldn’t pretend that things weren’t bad. After all, it was why my parents left.

The older I grew, the more I marvelled at my parents’ bravery. Leaving Sudan and everything they knew in the hope of a better life for themselves and their unborn child (that’d be yours truly) took a megaton of faith and guts.

Glaring at the icon, I narrowed my eyes and loosed a telepathic request that he come on-line. The grey disc sat there in mute rebellion. I gave up in disgust. I checked the time — 1:20am — and groaned.

Tomorrow is going to be the utter pits.

I should’ve gone to bed hours ago, but I wouldn’t sleep well unless I knew Uncle Iry was all right. I didn’t dare hope he’d gotten hired, but maybe that was because I was trying not to think about work. My gaze wandered across my tiny flat to where my work jacket hung on a peg beside my bed. My smiling face grinned from the ID badge clipped to the lapel.

Bashir, Ibukun


British Museum

“A better life for you, Ibby,” my mother had said one night. “A better life where you can grow up without fear of bad men with guns.

“You never met, Adrian Shelton, ‘um,” I had muttered, using the Arabic for the word mum. “There are times I’d rather face bad men with guns.”

My eyes roved past the grey icon before settling on the pinched window that revealed only the wall of the neighbouring building.

I wasn’t serious, of course, but my supervisor was not to be trifled with. Adrian Shelton was a terribly demanding and critical man. He seemed to take particular satisfaction in scrutinising everything I did. I had little option except to adopt the old stiff upper lip. I didn’t just need the pitiful pay packet, the internship was the best shot I had in getting a real job once I graduated university. My whole future hung on making Dr Shelton happy, and I wasn’t convinced the man even knew how to be happy.

More important even than my future was my uncle’s life, which depended on my success. Every day he stayed in Sudan was another day his life was at risk. Putting an end to that risk meant money. Money I could earn if I finally got a good paying job, ideally (if I could dare to dream) with the Museum of Natural History.

I swallowed another sad sigh and got up with my now cold cup of tea. Hopping over a pile of folded laundry on my way to the countertop, which made the whole of my kitchenette, I turned the electric kettle on and stared at the blue light as the contraption began to rumble and hiss.

Like tyres on wet streets. Like that night.

My arms wrapped around my chest reflexively as the thought rocked me. It was nearly nine months since a lorry took a wet street corner too fast, sending both my parents to an early grave. They’d gone out to celebrate my mother getting a job as a nurse, the very occupation she’d had for years in Sudan before coming to London. It had taken her nearly two decades, but she was finally going to do the job she was born for.

My father had known my mother wanted to tell me the news herself, but when I’d called that night, he couldn’t help himself.

He’d blurted out, “She got it, Ibby! She got the job!” before I’d even said a word.

He’d apologised to my mother immediately afterwards and handed the phone to her, but she was too happy to let his outburst spoil things. My father was like my uncle, ready smiles and easy laughs, a man who wore his big heart on his sleeve. Mother was softer, quieter, yet somehow stronger for it. “Yes, Ibby,” she had said in her low, smooth voice. “I’m a nurse again.”

It was one of the last things my mother ever said to me. That and their plans to bring my Uncle Iry to the UK, with money from the new job.

Now I was Uncle Iry’s best hope. His only hope.

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