Azen Warriors and Guardians

An epic young adult Asian American fantasy adventure where Clara Wu, Sung Kim, Yuka Satoh and Daniel Nguyen must battle a demonic Warlock to save the world. But they are not alone as they are paired up with their trustworthy Guardians, the panda, white tiger, red crown crane and the water buffalo.

Book One:

Clara Wu and the Portal Book

Clara stared down hopelessly at the glistening shards of the Bamboo Jade that was supposed to be unbreakable. She looked up to see the rabid mayhem all about her as the elite battle pandas protectively encircled her from the Warlock’s fiery creatures. Just a few weeks ago, she was a typical Chinese American teenager from New York City until she was whisked away into the realm of Azen, where she became the Panda Empress Warrior. Her eyes darted above the pandas’ helmets as she saw her fellow warriors fighting the horde of creatures from above. Sung, Yuka and Daniel were frantically casting their dwindling powerful elements. Fatigue was taking a toll on them along with the armies of the Tiger, Crane and Buffalo Kingdoms. They had fought the first half of the arduous battle and were counting on Clara and the Panda Kingdom army to defeat the last of the creatures. Then they broke through the last barrier. Suddenly, her eyes bulged as a fiery creature leapt over the battle pandas; its claws outstretched toward her as fire glowed from its snapping jaw. But before it could sink its claws into her, the end of a bamboo spear struck its head, slamming it to the ground. The Guardian Panda came into view and took one last glance at her before he turned away to make one last stand. Clara felt her courage abandon her as she was supposed to protect the Panda Kingdom but they were on the precipice of loss. Her eyes fell on her wrist, and the jewel glistened back at her. Instinctively, she reached out for it and knew it was their last hope.

Jade Labyrinth

Book Two:

Clara Wu and the Jade Labyrinth

Clara Wu, along with Sung Kim, Yuka Satoh and Daniel Nguyen return to Azen with guarded excitement. They learn more about the long history of Azen and the dark journey that the original Jade Warriors had undertaken to save Azen against the Warlock armies. But now, that same journey needs to be embarked upon to save the Panda Kingdom. However, that means that the Forbidden Cave to the ominous Jade Labyrinth needs to be unsealed, to reveal its secrets once more.

Clara’s breathing was rapid and shallow as her hands somehow mysteriously dissolved the rock in front of her. Her eyes bulged frantically as more of the rock dissolved allowing her to push through. She glanced behind her and in the frantic light from their jade torches, she saw Daniel pounding wildly on the rock wall as it too dissolved in front of him. When she and Daniel ventured into the misty dark Jade Labyrinth hours before, they never imagined it would come alive. The clicking noise caught her attention as she swung her head toward the other end of the tunnel. She saw the tendrils coming toward them. With all her might, she desperately pushed herself into the shallow space of the rock face. She spun around just as she saw Daniel do the same when suddenly, the tendrils thrusted and thrived between them, blocking her view of him as she screamed out, “Daniel!” In an instant, the frenzied moment turned silent as she was entombed.

* * *

Yuka looked at Sung incredulously. She couldn’t believe what he was telling her. The Guardians had treated and trained them well but when Sung responded, “Yes, to fight their battles.” She paused but she was still skeptical of the mysterious stranger in the cave who was feeding Sung an alternate reality of the World of Azen. She wanted to confront the stranger herself but Sung forbade it and asked her to trust him. She wanted to but her intuition was telling her that something was wrong, but she gave into Sung’s wish. When he told her not to worry, all Yuka could do was just that, as he disappeared into the dark cave.


Book Three:

Clara Wu and the Rescue

Clara Wu is excited to rejoin her friends Sung Kim, Yuka Satoh and Daniel Nguyen in preparation for the next battle against the Warlock’s demon-spawned army. But a tragic mistake leaves one of her friends in perilous danger and the well laid plans for Azen’s defense are put in jeopardy. Everything hinges on Clara embarking on a daring rescue mission to save her friend, from the Warlock.

Clara had been silently flying atop the crane for some time. The knots in her stomach were twisted so tight, she thought they would sheer apart at any moment and tear her insides out. She looked up as the cool night air whisked by her cheeks like sharp daggers. Her eyes looked about her and she could barely see the small stealthy Top Talon squadron against the dark of night. But she knew they were there and were probably as anxious as she was. Everything depended on a successful rescue so that they could make it back in time for the next battle. Without all the Azen Warriors at the battlefront, the Azen armies would not stand a chance against the unrelenting Warlock’s army. Azen cannot fall, she thought as she let out a sigh of hopelessness. She thumbed the comforting feel of the Bamboo Jade to calm her anxiousness when her crane whispered, “Empress Warrior Wu, we are almost there.” Clara looked up and she saw it in the distance. It was faint but she could make out the large silhouette of some forbidding structure jutting out of a mountain side. It was the Warlock’s fortress, and somewhere inside was her fellow warrior that needed rescue before it was too late.

Final Battle

Book Four:

Clara Wu and the Final Battle

Clara Wu felt the weight in the pit of her stomach as her red crown crane, Shiori, flew toward the tall rocky reddish and orange Sky Pillars. It was the final battle against the Warlock’s most powerful creatures and if she, Sung Kim, Yuka Satoh and Daniel Nguyen could just defeat them, Azen would be safe. Despite being victorious in the last three battles, she wondered why she couldn’t shake off the looming doom.

The clash of horns was cataclysmic between the armored water buffalos and the thick green hide of the Nians, spawned from the deepest demonic depths that the Warlock conjured them from. Clara sliced through the air atop her faithful crane as her eyes bulged as crimson-splattered-dust was violently kicked up into the air by pounding hooves. The tigers were gone, the cranes and eagles were powerless and the panda mounted defenses, though formidable, would not hold. She looked up and saw a tornado spiral to its full size as Yuka pointed frantically to Daniel. He directed a stream of fire into it just as the closest Nians were sucked up into the fiery tornado. Clara turned suddenly and saw Sung desperately sending down lethal icicles into the horde of Nians. There wasn’t supposed to be so many of them and she had no idea how so many could have emerged from the canyon to confront the mighty water buffalos. Shiori, her trusty crane, banked hard and Clara leaned into the turn and she suddenly saw it. The reason why the Nians were able to amplify their ferocious onslaught. She directed Shiori toward the source as she loaded two green jade tipped arrows into the Bow of Destiny. She drew back and in that bated breath, knew it was Azen’s only hope.


Book Five:

Clara Wu and the Warlock

This is the fifth and last book of the Clara Wu Books series, which caps off the fantastical story of Clara Wu, Sung Kim, Yuka Satoh and Daniel Nguyen in the World of Azen.

The darkness was crisp as it whizzed by Yuka as she silently flew atop the onyx-covered Guardian Crane. In that dark moment, she could sense the tension along her tensile sleek feathered body. She was about to return to that wretched place as tormented memories haunted her. But this time, she wasn’t alone as she turned toward Daniel.

Though it wasn’t the goal, Daniel couldn’t stop the festering thoughts that he had: Revenge. He had to find a way to atone for what he did and if he could only confront the Warlock, redemption was his. He was confident that with his friends and guardians, they would seize the day as he looked back at Sung.

Eagerness filled Sung and he knew that it stemmed from the possibility of confronting her once more: The gumiho. He could never forgive how he had humiliated him and almost took his life. His eyes looked up and saw the beguiling tranquility in the night sky adorned with moons and stars. They were beautiful he thought as he turned his head toward Clara.

Clara was nervous and calm at the same time as she readjusted her grip on the harness aboard her faithful crane, Shiori. The squadrons were like whispers of feathered missiles shooting through the darkness and she felt emboldened, yet she couldn’t help but feel some apprehension. But her thoughts were interrupted when the squadrons of cranes started to slow down as they assumed their circling holding patterns. They were cloaked in darkness until she heard the squawk. The battle to end all battles had begun.