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When the young witch Wren and her immortal tutor Omar emerge from the frozen wastes of Europa at the warring cities of Constantia and Stamballa, they discover that war is the least their problems. Frozen corpses are erupting from the ground, an immortal warrior is causing havoc on the battlefield, and a single grieving mother is the link between the two. 

While Omar battles a legion of enraged zombies, Wren matches her wits and skills against the most powerful witch in the world, the immortal crone Baba Yaga. And when she dives into the witch queen's mind, Wren finds not only the madness of Baba Yaga but the cruel ghosts of her own dead predecessors. 

But it's not all doom and gloom. A handsome young soldier has caught Wren's eye, and Omar has taught her more than a few new tricks, like how to command the aether mists. Although, even if she can defeat the other-worldly forces besieging the city, she must still contend with a vast armada of naval destroyers and deadly airships, and a warrior known as Koschei the Deathless... 

Welcome to the world of AETHERIUM, where strange machines sail the seas and the skies, enormous prehistoric beasts roam the earth, and the restless dead whisper to the living. Similar to our own world in the sixteenth century, AETHERIUM explores a reality in which many of the megafauna did not die out, including terror birds and saber-toothed cats, and in which a devastating Ice Age continues to ravage Europe while Africa enjoys cool rains and the Sahara is no desert at all. But strangest of all may be the science of seeing, hearing, and controlling the souls of the dead using a golden metal with many names: sunsteel, orichalcum, and... AETHERIUM!

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