The Valley of the Hornbills, an ancient land surrounded by magic and legend, suffers under the tyranny of Lady Suriya, the vampire queen. Babies are being taken at dark moon, magical properties are stolen before they can replenish and the inhabitants live in constant fear of losing their loved ones to the blood drinkers. But the fairies, humans, animals, tree spirits, dragons, water people and mountain people do not lose hope. They believe in the prophecy:
“One day, our beloved valley will be soaked with blood of the innocent. Evil that has come from the outside world will reign and nothing can stand in its way. But when it seems that all hope is lost, a dark skinned girl with almond shaped eyes, on a quest to escape the demons of her past, will come from the outside to rid our valley of the evil queen. In the end, only one will remain standing. We pray that it is the Nirupita (the Appointed).”
However, the Appointed, Anjeli, a sixteen year-old girl haunted by omens of bloodlust, angels and demons, does not yet know that she is to save a whole civilization. She is living the life of a somewhat normal teenager, learning about young love and feuding with her over-protective mother, Alice. However, one terrible day, a tragedy befalls the family and Anjeli finds herself struggling with despair and self-loathing. Her boyfriend, Mark, decides to take her away to a town in Sarawak.
Their sight-seeing in Borneo takes them on a magical journey and they find themselves in a parallel world, The Valley of the Hornbills. There they meet a long list of colourful characters, all of whom believe that Anjeli is the Nirupita who has come to save them from the tyranny of Lady Suriya. They insist that she is the girl from the ancient prophecy and Anjeli has to make a choice: to ignore their pleas and find a way home, or to stay and fulfill her destiny.
© Cinthia Koeksal 2012