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Gifts of the Elder Gods

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Here’s the third story of mine that I’m going to share. Hopefully this will make up for the silence on this blog since my second daughter was born.

This is one of my published works. It was published in the anthology Parasitorium: the Terrors Within, which is unfortunately no longer in print and now only available at Lulu.

I’ve shopped this story around the reprint market, but its on the long side (over 8,000 words). It was written on spec for the anthology, so I haven’t really lost anything in not being able to sell the reprint.

I think it’s a pretty fun story, but I don’t think its close to my best work. Right now, that is a story I sold to Black Gate, and which will hopefully see publication soon.

I hope you all enjoy “Gifts of the Elder Gods” by Fraser Ronald.


“Nothing comes without a price.”

I could have told him that. He looked quite proud of this pronouncement. Of course, he considered himself the fount of all knowledge, all wisdom. I just nodded, trying to put my disinterest into my face. Apparently it didn’t work.

“His invitation intimates he has found a more powerful source of magic.” Havper Dodhia, technically my master, shook his head. “I fear he has been misled.”

Rather then smack him out of his saddle, I just nodded again. Would he never tire of his own voice? Of course Terem Hawl was misled. He was easily misled. The man had chosen to become a wizard, but seemed to have all the energy and motivation of a sub-par slug. Now he thought he had found a way to become great without exerting himself to any great degree. He had bought snake oil from a charlatan.

“When we studied together in Tsian-Tao, I noted a certain laxity in his manner,” Havper said. He clucked his tongue. “I knew then he would never become a great wizard.”

I heard the unspoken like me. Havper still had knowledge he had not shared, secrets he had not revealed, so I let him continue, let him puff out his chest and play the great man. Three times my age, he had studied under the greatest arcane masters alive, yet in a few months, if all went as planned, I would surpass him in power. For those months, I would need to listen to his yammerings.

As he had pointed out, nothing comes without a price.

To read the full story, go here.