Monthly Archives: February 2021

Fortune’s Soldier: A Bloody Crown, Chapter 03

Chapter 3: The Month of the Dog, Turisday the Fifth. Kaessekros on the Red Isles in Kellalh The last time Alec Rathwig had stood in Kellalh, he watched a city burn. He had sailed away as flames consumed everything behind … Continue reading

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Fortune’s Soldier: A Bloody Crown, Chapter 02

He paused and looked east. The jumble of buildings—most of them two or three stories—blocked his sight, but the smell of sea still air reached him. Over there—he could see it from the docks—was home. Over the Small Sea were the islands of his home’s west coast, protected by a jumble of rocks and shoals that made navigation dangerous for any but the most seasoned and familiar of sailors. In his youth, he had denigrated the Islanders, called them savages and barbarians. Now, he would kiss that rocky ground if he ever stood on it.

Turning back to the laneway, he scratched his stubbled chin. He knew this city well, but had never ventured so deeply into its the warrens and alleys. Here he found the desperate and the poor. Did he belong? He had long ago fought his way out of poverty, but in some ways he remained desperate. He desperately wanted to stand again in the court of his father’s home, to hunt in the forests of his youth, and to breath its free air.

People walked through the narrow street, cut off from the sky by the overhanging upper stories of the surrounding buildings. Those structures looked old and decrepit, many tilting at odd angles. The people on the streets had much in common with the structures—ill-maintained and stooped. They watched him like crows over a battlefield, their eyes on the pack slung over his shoulder. His hand didn’t leave the elaborate, basket-style hilt of his straight-bladed sabre.

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