I have a handful of short stories uploaded to Smashwords, but wanted to call out one in particular today: “Loyalties” was originally published as a back-up piece in Empire of Stone by Alex Ness. Alex is a talented poet and writer and a good friend of mine who has occasionally invited me to contribute to his projects. I’m always honored and humbled when I am able to collaborate with Alex. (Follow his twitter at @alexnesspoetry.)
Told through poem and prose, and featuring illustrations from Trent Westbrook throughout, Empire of Stone imagines a world torn to pieces after centuries of constant violent war. On the brink of a resolution, Orcs have united with other races, some of them human tribes, in an attempt to crush the dwarves and their Empire of Stone once and for all.
“Loyalties,” tells the story of Jinari, warrior and leader of the human Kur-hik clan, who has aligned with the Vilgar-kin to stand against the dwarven empire. She is dispatched by High Orc Chieftain Gar-Dum on an important mission — one that has her questioning her motives and her loyalties.
Empire of Stone is available in paperback or as an eBook.