Now Available: The Burned One

THE BURNED ONE

HISTORICAL FANTASY

CLINT WESTGARD

The tale of the Burned One, a mad noble who demanded children’s lives as tribute and sought eternal life, is told in a forgotten part of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire.

An amateur folklorist discovers it following the end of the Great War and begins to trace its origins. She is driven by a compulsion she cannot explain to find what truth, if any, lies behind this unbelievable story.

She will find it in a forgotten palace, secluded deep in the mountains. What else she finds there is beyond all belief. It will change her, forever.

Buy the ebook

 

Advertisements

Council of Shadows

NOW AVAILABLE!

Discontent continues to fester within the realms of Craitol and Renuih, fed by intrigues carried out in the shadows. As rivals and apostates struggle for supremacy, a long incubated plan begins to unfold.

Vyissan, a mysterious alkemycal practitioner arrives in Renuih, the latest strike in a long war over who shall control the secrets of alkemya and Craitol itself. He carries with him a secret that, once revealed, will reverberate across all realms. Before he can reveal it though, the conspirators against the emperor will strike their own blow.

But now, a new and more powerful menace looms on the horizon. The Shadow Men have gained the secrets of the Council Adept’s alkemya and no one can be certain what they will do with it…

Council of Shadows is the second volume in The Shadow Men.

Available at Amazon, Kobo and Smashwords

 

The Forgotten

Meredith was the first to move, releasing her grip on my arms and plucking the button from my neck. She returned it and the one she wore to her jacket pocket while I rubbed my throat, the cold gradually receding from my skin. I was giddy with relief at our apparent escape and had a thousand questions, but Meredith’s face was marked by a coiled sort of anger that warned me from asking any of them just now.

Nightfall approached, the sun low in the sky and the shadows long, by the time we left the apartment building, slipping out the back into a taxi Meredith had called. She sent the driver on a circuitous route, watching out the back window for the entire trip, with the same grim expression on her face. When she was satisfied we had not been followed she directed him to an apartment building called the Ivanhoe, an older brick building in a neighborhood I thought was close to where I lived. Each floor, I noted as we ascended up the stairs to the fifth, had a slightly unpleasant odor in its hallway, all of them distinct from the others somehow.

The apartment that Meredith brought me to was cramped and narrow, filled with ornate antique furniture too large for its rooms, forcing us to navigate with care in order to move about the place. There were shelves heavy with books, some of them very old, and the air was heavy with the smell of them. Everything here seemed to run counter to the person I had met that afternoon, it had none of Meredith’s care or precision.

Seeing the look on my face, Meredith said, “It’s a friends. Someone they couldn’t possibly know, so it should take them awhile to find us again.”

How long?” Continue reading

Now Available: Beware! The Seas Are Angry This Night

Beware scaled

“Captain, I don’t know what to tell you. The game has changed.”

And so it has, but the Captain is determined not to lose. He faces a host of problems though: the man he was supposed to make a deal with has betrayed him, turning on the Infernal Contraption which means death to everyone near it, and now he is forced flee passing through a city descending into chaos and violence. And then there is the Grand Jefe…

A short story by  Clint Westgard
Available at Amazon, Kobo and Smashwords

The Game Has Changed

“Captain, I don’t know what to tell you. The game has changed.”

The dwarf peered sullenly through the haze filled cavern, rank with the smell of refuse, at the dandy who was smiling and smoking a thin cigarillo.

“Anger troubles the blood,” the dandy said in a sympathetic voice, his smile deepening. The expression on the henchman who stood behind him, his hands hanging free at his sides, as though he were waiting an excuse to use them, did not change.

“Daftness,” the dwarf said. He was dressed in sailor’s clothes, as was his companion, a giant of a man with hands as large as the dwarf’s head. They had docked that afternoon and made their way through the city and then below, through the sewers, to this room, as had been agreed. The sewers were ancient and huge, no longer in use, the sole memories of a long extinct civilization. They still retained the shadow of the grandeur that had once existed aboveground, long disappeared, replaced by haphazard and crumbling edifices.

“The Grand Jefe will not be happy. He’s no faro man.”

“He will play,” the dandy said. “It’s all been arranged. There’s no need to trouble yourself with his concerns.”

“I will decide what to trouble myself with.”

The dandy shrugged.

“Daftness,” the dwarf said and spat on the ground. “What have you done?”

“As I said, it has all been arranged. A new sun rises tomorrow,” the dandy said, spreading his hands. He looked at the henchman as if he might confirm that indeed it was so.

“Arranged? What daftness is this? What’s been arranged? What have you done?” Spittle flew from the dwarf’s mouth as he said it.

“It hardly matters to you, but I am keeping the Infernal Contraption. It is no longer for sale.”

“It has already been promised to someone. We set sail tonight.”

“The seas are angry this night, captain.”

“All nights.”

The dandy made a show of looking at his shoes, though he still kept his eyes on the two of them. He threw the stub of his cigarillo away and stepped toward the dwarf, holding both hands before him.

“I don’t know what else to tell you. It is not for sale.”

“The thing is not yours. It is for the Grand Jefe to decide,” the dwarf growled. “Now let’s stop with this nonsense. The hour’s getting late.”

Here the dandy’s smile grew. “As to that, there are great many things that are no longer for the Grand Jefe to decide.”

“We’ll see what he has to say when I tell him that you’ve squared the deal.”

“You’ll not be seeing him anytime soon.”

As the dandy spoke the henchman stepped from behind him holding an antiquated handpiece. Before anyone had a chance to move further the giant leapt towards the henchman, moving with a surprising quickness, and got hold of his wrist and neck in his massive hands. The sound of grinding bone was followed by an airless scream from the henchman, more felt by the two who watched than heard. The gun fell from the henchman’s hand and the echoes of its clattering had only just dimmed when he followed it to the ground. The dandy watched with disbelieving eyes.

“The game is changed,” the dwarf said and was at the dandy’s throat with a knife.

From Beware! The Seas Are Angry This Night by Clint Westgard

Forthcoming: Beware! The Seas Are Angry This Night

Beware scaled

“Captain, I don’t know what to tell you. The game has changed.”

And so it has, but the Captain is determined not to lose. He faces a host of problems though: the man he was supposed to make a deal with has betrayed him, turning on the Infernal Contraption which means death to everyone near it, and now he is forced flee passing through a city descending into chaos and violence. And then there is the Grand Jefe…

A short story by  Clint Westgard
Forthcoming May 2013