I’m happy to announce that The Love of a Woman is available! It is the eighth chapter in the Saulzar Codex – a series of short stories focusing on Saulzar, a fierce warrior battling to overcome his own past. You can learn more about the project here.
I’d love for you to stop by and pick it up. It’s a short story at 9,000 words and is priced at $0.99.
How about some free reading? Here’s the same sample you’ll find on the Amazon website:
A storm built far to the south upon the Hadean Sea. Saulzar was perched upon the step of a building and gazed across the Harbor of Emish, past the sleek trading vessels, the lumbering warships, and the multitude of fishing boats to watch its towering black clouds. He could imagine the power within the storm, the fierce wind, driving rain, and dangerous lightning. He could imagine it because he felt the same upwelling of power and danger whenever he unsheathed the sword that was strapped to his side.
That power frightened and intrigued him. He kept it in its sheath as often as he could, and had succeeded in doing so on most occasions. He shuddered at the devastation he had wrought when its naked blade glinted in the sun before bathing in blood.
The storm held his attention until a ray of the setting sun struck one of the many gilded, fluted towers of the city, its reflection shining into his eyes. He shook himself from his reverie and stood, ready to find food. He walked down the stone steps of the massive Temple of Saba, along the busy docks, and back into the heart of the city. Crowds flowed around him, giving him wide berth. He was as different from the people around him as a wolf from a lamb. He was hard and muscular where they were soft. His hair was wild and unkempt where they were perfumed and adorned. His eyes burned with a savage intelligence, their eyes dim with the luxuries of civilization.
He ignored them as he strode through the market, following his nose towards the best smells, hunting for food. A flash of tanned skin caught his eye. A hint of jasmine upon the air. A shimmer of black hair and a face that haunted his dreams.
His hunger was forgotten as he stalked into the crowd after a whisper of a dream. Could she be here, in Emish? Now the crowds hindered him, old women stepped in front of him, he bumped into traders, was blocked by priests. He waded through and around the crowd, an elusive creature of beauty just out of sight. Another glimpse of her hair, a snatch of her voice upon the wind. It was her, he was sure of it.
She disappeared into the theatre.
He bulled his way up the stairs and to the entrance, only to be pushed back by ushers checking for tickets. He growled at them and tried to step past, but they were insistent that he join the queue and purchase a ticket of his own. Saulzar stared into the darkness beyond them and swore he could see the sweep of her dress as she turned up a staircase.
He sullenly joined the queue and waited for his turn to shake out three copper coins for a ticket. He showed it to the ushers with a sense of triumph disproportionate to his victory and swept past them into the ornate lobby. Saulzar joined the flow of well-dressed, affluent patrons.
He felt terribly out of place.
His hardened leather pants and vest were crusty and dirty. His hair was unwashed. He smelled of the wild. A dainty woman in blue, flowing robes with painted eyes and a flowery, overpowering smell sidled away from him as they ascended a staircase together. Saulzar grinned at her and she flinched and stumbled against the railing.
You’ll find The Love of a Woman in Kindle format from the Amazon store If you don’t already have a Kindle or a Kindle app, I highly recommend it to you. Here are a couple of ways to get started:
Let me know what you think of it by leaving an Amazon review or a comment on this post.