Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Trials and Tribulations



Title: Trials
Editor: Faith Hunter
Genre: Urban Fantasy

21 Vignettes and Short Stories set in Faith Hunter’s World of Thorn St. Croix.

The Rogue Mage world began long ago, when the epic battle between the High Host and the Darkness was won and lost. TRIALS takes fans of Thorn St. Croix into the past, before the opening pages of BLOODRING. These stories, set in Faith Hunter's Rogue Mage world, are adventures with new characters and old, facing dangers unimaginable. And they must save the world all over again.

If you ever wondered what happened between seraphs, kylen, second-unforeseen, mages, seraph-touched, spawn, humans, dragons, and their creatures before the series, now is your chance to delve deeper and wider. TRIALS features new short stories from nine authors—including Faith Hunter—and vignettes from the Rogue Mage role playing game.

TRIALS Authors: 
Faith Hunter, Misty Massey, Lou J Berger, Ken Schrader, Spike Y Jones, Diana Pharaoh Francis, Christina Stiles, Tamsin Silver, Melissa McArthur.



Title: Tribulations
Editor: Faith Hunter
Genre: Urban Fantasy

17 Vignettes and Short Stories set in Faith Hunter’s World of Thorn St. Croix

The Rogue Mage story began with the post-apocalyptic novels BLOODRING, SERAPHS, and HOST, when epic battles between Thorn St. Croix and the forces of Darkness were fought. TRIBULATIONS (Rogue Mage Anthology Vol. II) takes place during and after the series timeline. These stories and vignettes, set in Faith Hunter's Rogue Mage world, are adventures with new characters and old, facing Darkness and an uncertain future.

The relationships between seraphs, kylen, second-unforeseen, mages, seraph-touched, spawn, humans grow deeper, and the battles with dragons and their creatures grow more dangerous. TRIBULATIONS features new short stories from five authors—including Faith Hunter—and vignettes from the Rogue Mage role playing game.


TRIBULATIONS Authors: 
Faith Hunter, Jean Rabe, Spike Y Jones, Christina Stiles, Lucienne Diver.

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TRIALS and TRIBULATIONS will soon be followed by TRIUMPHANT—the paperback omnibus (both Anthology Volumes I and II in a bound format).


Bones
by Faith Hunter

(late Winter 105 PA/2117 AD)

                David lifted the chunk of crystal. On first glance, it appeared to be a huge chunk of amethyst, gem quality, smooth to the touch, but it contained a luminescence that looked biological rather than mineral when he placed it under a microscope. It looked like things were swarming inside, creating purple light. He had no idea where the rock had been found—or even if it was true rock.

                Though he had done it a thousand times already, he rubbed a thumb across the stone and inspected the pad of skin. Nothing rubbed off.

                With a chisel, he scraped along one smooth facet of the natural crystal, collecting the rock dust onto a glass slide. He lowered the 100 X microscope lens. The dust sprang at him through the oculars, glowing. Then the luminescence dimmed, the motion that he could almost—almost—see slowed. And the faint light went out. Just like always.

                David removed the slide from the scope and carried it to the workbench. With tweezers, he removed the cover glass and scraped half of the rock dust onto a petri dish. The other half, he carried back to the crystal. He pressed the start button on a stopwatch as he shook the dust back onto the rock. He watched as it was reabsorbed. Clicked the stopwatch. 8.4 seconds. The first time he had done the test, the dust had taken over twenty-four hours to reabsorb. It was as if the rock had learned a new task, and now excelled at it.

                David closed the crystal up in its metal box and entered his notations into the computer file. An Earth Invasion Heretic and a self-taught scientist, David was also a blasphemer. Not an atheist—not exactly. He believed that the being the seraphs referred to as the Most High did in fact exist. He just didn’t like him very much. He didn’t like what the seraphs and the MH (a glib abbreviation he was careful never to voice among his kirk-employed co-workers ) had done to the Earth or to its people, so he had joined the EIH to prove that the Most High (whatever it was) could be defeated. And now the EIH had joined with the orthodoxy to study artifacts and find a way to defeat the Dark. It was an uneasy alliance, and David imagined that when the Dark was conquered the coalition would fall apart—messily.

                His curiosity unsatisfied, David locked the lab and walked down the hallway to check on his most recent experiment. The seraph. Well, the watcher—a fallen seraph. This one had allied with the Light in the Last War, and was wounded in the battle over Mexico City nearly a hundred years ago: burned to a crisp, sixth-degree burns over his entire body, leaving only bones. But he hadn’t died. Not exactly.

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