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Category: Fantasy

Short story – Night Hunt

Posted in Fantasy, Night Hunt, Short Story, and The Hounds of Annwn

Another short story from the world of The Hounds of Annwn.

George Talbot Traherne thinks about the choice he made to leave the human world behind.

This story takes place between and To Carry the Horn and The Ways of Winter.


NIGHT HUNT

Night Hunt - Full Front Cover - 297x459

His eyes popped open in the dim light cast by the banked fire. For a moment the bed felt strange and then he remembered—Angharad’s house—and there she slept, turned away from him, breathing slowly. He was wide awake and on the alert.

What woke me? The snow was deep on the ground, muffling any outside noises. No cars were here to disturb him, no engines in the fae otherworld, and he was still getting used to the absence of the sounds of human civilization. He cataloged what he could hear—the tick of the embers in the fireplace, the occasional creak of the floorboards as they adjusted to temperature changes, Angharad’s soft breaths.

Then it came again. Muffled barks of excitement. He looked over at his dogs by the fire. Sargent, the yellow feist, was motionless except for his chest rising and falling, but the bluetick hound was quivering in his sleep, his paws twitching as he ran. He panted and yipped, his eyes closed. No wonder it woke me, he thought.

George had no trouble providing the real sound behind Hugo’s dream, the loud, deep bays as he followed a hot scent. That cry would ring off a hillside, but here it was, indoors, just a remnant to wake him in the night.

Nothing to worry about, he thought, as he relaxed back down into the warm bed by his wife’s side. He wasn’t sleepy, but if he stayed quiet, sleep would return.

Inevitably his mind turned to the tumult of his recent weeks. I made a choice, he thought, the most important of my life. I’ll never face a bigger one. I chose to turn my back on the human world and stay here, with these new-found kinsmen.

Short story – Cariad

Posted in Cariad, Fantasy, Short Story, and The Hounds of Annwn

It's going to be a while before the next full-length book is available. It's going well, but the story will be large and a bit complicated.

In the meantime, I thought I'd start writing a few of the short stories from the world of The Hounds of Annwn that are kicking around in my head. I'll try to produce one more or less monthly. They'll only be available as ebooks initially, but I'll collect them into bundles as paperbacks every so often.

So, in time for Valentine's Day, please enjoy this brief story about a man who loses confidence that he's the man his wife needs.

This story takes place between The Ways of Winter and King of the May.


CARIAD

Cariad - Full Front Cover - 297x459Benitoe busied himself with rechecking the girth on Halwyn, off to the side of the inn yard, and kept his eye on the side door of the main building. Two of the tall fae rode in and dismounted, chatting together. A groom came out of the stable to take their horses, a lutin in red like many of the staff at the inn, a foot shorter than the fae, or more, like Benitoe himself, though Benitoe wore his dark green hunt livery instead of the traditional red. The groom looked over and gave Benitoe a wave. “We’ve got his pony tacked up. Are you still planning to return tonight?”

“Shouldn’t be any problem with that, it’s just a few miles on horseback, through the ways, and the weather’s clear. Do you have enough space ready?”

“Luhedoc told us to expect eight, and we can just manage it.”

Benitoe took in all the construction that was still underway as the Golden Cockerel was being hurriedly restored to use. He’d seen the newest interior repairs last night after he rode in, but now, in daylight, the extent of the work was much more obvious. The stables had been in complete collapse when he’d last seen them, a few weeks ago. Maëlys had latched onto the first stone masons and carpenters to become available as the barriers dropped around Edgewood and set them to work, rightly anticipating that the reviving town would need a working inn as its dwellers came back to life, reviving from the curse that had buried them in a sort of half-life for so long.