Saturday, September 21, 2013

The 4th Empires Falling short at Wattpad.

I have just published the first chapter of the next story in the series at the free site Wattpad. I plan on publishing one chapter a week over the next eight weeks until the story is published in total. I like three of these characters a great deal and the Empires Falling tale could not be told without the courage and abilities of at least one of these characters. 

Here is a picture of the cover for the story. I imagine that it looks similar to the lead female character in the story. I would change it a bit if I could, but no cover is ever perfect.

Below is the first chapter of the story I will publish it here as I do there. Plus notes about the characters from time to time.

Whispers From A Speaking Demon
Rodney Cannon

Chapter One.
The lands west of the wilderness were not the most lucrative place for a those who practiced the magical arts. The east was steeped in its ancient traditions like the Wilderness and magic of all types were practiced as a way of everyday life while the Great Western empire had built its power upon the force of steel only now they were learning that steel alone could not protect what it had won in battle. They need people like Aldo and his followers.
Amelina, Brando, Burkhard and Lanzo stood at the railing of the boat that they had purchased passage on. The cargo of donkeys and saber foxes could be smelled, even on the open sea, for miles in every direction. A five-day passage with these stinking animals had not got to waste. There were a great many minor acts of magic that required saber fox dung and blood from any low animal. Brando and Burkhard knew most of it without being taught, while the much younger Lanzo had to be taught the spells and mixes of potions again and again.
Amelina knew the magic well enough, but did not apply herself. She was young and pretty and gifted with second sight so Aldo did not press her. The war hungry men that they would be dealing with would probably be more interested in her breast than her considerable gifts. Aldo knew how gifted she was and still it took even him a few weeks to overlook the temptations of young and firm flesh.
“A storm will be waiting for us when we arrive.”Amelina said with her back to him.
Aldo stepped forward and joined them at the forward railing.
He looked off to the distant sky and tried to see beyond it. Rain and icy hail and something man made beyond that. A storm of arrows?
“Our safety?”Aldo asked Amelina.
“We will be fine.”She smiled, then turned her eyes on the other three.
“One of them will fall and one will leave our company for a time. I cannot
see which one.”
“What?”Brando asked.
“One of us is going to trip over something and fall?”Lanzo asked.
“If it is anything, but that you could have said something before we boarded.”
“You cannot run away from your fate Lanzo.”Burkhard said.
“I disagree. Destiny is written in stone only for the world changers, for the common folk like me destiny does not care if I die while eating a bowl of soup or at the hands of a blood thirsty army or between the legs of a beautiful woman.”Lanzo said. “Hell an average woman, depending upon how much wine is involved.”
Amelina stared at Lanzo for an uncomfortable moment then frowned. “Your path seems fixed. It was not fix yesterday or last week, but now it is. Now and forward.”She said.
“How is that possible?”Aldo heard himself asking. He did not want to let them know that there was something that he did not understand so he quickly added. “Please tell them.”
“There are moments when our paths narrow to one. Imagine that all paths that he has walked has lead him to a river. To go forward he must take the river and once he does then the river is in charge.”Alemina told them.
“Does this path lead to you and me together?”Lanzo smiled.
“I cannot see my own future. That said, I can promise you that it does not. Except I can see you carrying my bag in about ten minutes.”She smiled back.
It turned out that both Lanzo and Brando carried their own bundles and those belonging to Alemina and their master. This allowed both Aldo and Alemina to stroll along the dock ahead of them fully cloaked. Aldo walked with his hands tucked inside his sleeves while Alemina allowed her long lovely hands to swing at her sides.
There were few perfect pleasures in life and Aldo wished that he could have accompanied his followers to the local bath house, but he needed to find a broker of their talents that he had been told about. He glanced back only once to Amelina and wished that he could send someone else to take care of this business.
Lanzo had never been a fan of public bathing or scented water. The room filled with steaming tubs were not public, but since he would be sharing it with Brando and Burkhard it felt public. If only he could find out where Amelina was taking her bath and share a tub with her then his life would be complete.
“Those easterns made me scrub down with soap before I came in here.”Lanzo said as he peeled off his towel and quickly climbed into the steaming hot tub. The thoughts of being naked in front of others was washed away by what felt like boiling hot water. “Awwhhh . . . ”Lanzo cried out as he danced around in the tub before sinking into it with the laughter of his two comrades echoing off the walls.
Lanzo was waving away the scented steam that was stinging his nostrils and eyes when someone walked into the room. He was at eye level to the most magnificent ass that he had even seen before he realized that it had been Amelina who had entered the room.
She dropped to one knee to place a small sack down beside a tub that would be lucky enough to envelope her amazing body. Then she was up and turning sideways to get into the tub and to give Lanzo a frontal view. The reaction that he had was not burning lust as he would have expected. There were moments that made a man feel inadequate and this was one of them. Lanzo felt as if no one, least of all he should have been allow to gaze on something some amazingly beautiful. Her curves and proportions along with that beautiful face was something that should have only been able to exist in dreams.
Amelina caught his eyes, saw something other than what she had expected and quickly, almost shyly retreated into the steaming water.
“You are lucky that Aldo is elsewhere. Not a pretty sight brother.”Burkhard said.
“How about the last sight.”Brando grinned.
“Magical.”Lanzo said.

     That is the first chapter of this fantasy short story. I hope that those of you that have read the stories in the Empires Falling series have enjoyed them. I look forward to getting feedback from you guys about the short story series. 

Thank you for visiting and please take a moment to share this post and to stumble us on stumble upon. 

Last note, my offer of a free text copy of any of the first three short stories for those of you who like the facebook page is still in effect. So please take a moment to visit the facebook page. The link is on the side of this page.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Empires Short Stories Rising

Empires Short Stories Rising

With the third short story being published last week and the release of the first free story coming within the next week the Empires Falling universe is beginning to take shape. You expect an update soon of the family lines that will dominate these stories. Also I am working on a chart of the most powerful magical characters in the Empire’s universe. 


There has not been much in the way of magic or good old fashion sword play in theses short stories?

That changes in the third story of the series. Miri is one of the more powerful characters that practices magic. Below I am going to offer the first two chapter of the 8,000 word third story in the series along with link to where it can be purchased.

Understand that all the short stories so far are stand alone stories. You do not have to read one to understand what is happening in another, but you will need to read a few on them if you wish to know what is going on in the first novel of the trilogy to come. 

The First Port in the Storm
(An Empires Falling Short)
Rodney Cannon

Chapter One.

The province of Panonia still felt like a new posting after almost four years. Maybe it was the fact that the area was so vast and the common tongue was still only one of a dozen spoken by the many tribes that made up the land.
Governor Magnux Cato stood on what was called the balcony of the Governor’s palace. The place was a three story drafty old stone keep that was part of a frontier fort that had crumbled almost a hundred years before this empire claimed it. Beyond the main gates, was the edge of a marketplace that covered almost two full miles. It ended at this side of the river and picked up where it left off on the other side of the river. The last governor had tried to suppress this trading post while he offered imperial protection to it and taxed it. Thanks to a river that flowed from areas unexplored even by imperial forces and paved roads that dated back hundreds of years this little corner of the empire was a nexus for every type of trade imaginable. All that had been needed to turn this post into a gold mine was someone like him.
Emperor Cato had looked at this post as a way to bury his nephew while not lowering the name Cato in the eyes of the public. He got sent off to govern a post in a waste land while his brother got the post of general of a legion that was given the task of taming a lurker infested wilderness across the eastern seas. A place that if glory was to be won would take the better part of ten years to do so. That was unless he had more resources such as gold skimmed from the taxes of a province like this.
Magnux pushed away from the railing and made his way down the stairs to where his personal guard waited. For the palace itself he had ten former legion officers. For most of these walks he had two hand-picked locals who had taken what was called a blood oath to protect his life at the cost of their own in return for the freedom from slavery and citizenship for eight members of their family. They were brothers born less than a year apart. With their heads smoothly shaved and covered in similar tattoos they looked like twins. Their common movements and unspoken language that Revin and Kelts shared reminded Magnux of the closeness he shared with his brother.
The two tall and reed thin men stood just inside the entrance way. They carried metal shafted spears rather than swords and where amazingly skilled with the weapon. It had taken the Empire almost six years to tame this territory because of the natives and how well they used this particular weapon.
“Governor Cato.”Revin said. He usually spoke for the brothers.
“I am listening Revin.”Magnux said.
“Merchant Fostel was offered a bribe in hopes that I would be able to secure an audience with you.”Revin said. It was a refreshing change of pace to have such honesty from a servant. His deal with the man and his brother was that they were allowed to accept all the bribes that did not inconvenience him or risk his safety. The fat merchant paid his taxes, threw a feast as well as the most decadent senators he had known and the most important thing was that he got to the point.
“Permission granted.”Magnux Cato nodded. “How much has he offered?”
“Ten dinar.”Revin said.
“Ask for eighteen and settle for twelve. He can afford it.”Magnux said.
“Anything else before we start.”

Chapter Two.
She knew that the dream was ending and with it would come a return to unrelenting pain and darkness so she held onto the dream and did what she had been taught to do. She attached herself to a shadow and rode it.
This shadow belonged to a fat man in a one man fishing boat that was barely wide enough to contain his girth. He sat in the boat, with huge meaty hands he pulled in his net. A dozen or so fish twitched and struggled inside of the net.
She looked away to the shadow a cloud on the water and hopped onto it. With the shadow skimming the surface of the flowing river came the sensation of floating. A sensation that came to an ending when the cloud touched land and she found herself at the edge of a river bank marketplace. There were old docks being torn down while in the distance newer ones were being constructed. Miri moved from one shadow to another until she was amongst the common people who were busy with buying and selling. Most of the languages that were spoken here were unknown to Miri and the only way to understand those languages would have required going deeper than a shadow. The language used by the merchants that seemed to be the most prosperous was the common tongue of the Western Empire. It was not native to her, but she had been taught it as a child. There was nothing special about their small talk. Talk of money, talk of the weather, talk of wars and rumors of wars. One old woman who sold her gifts as a seer talked of the year of the flaming star. How more than ten years had passed and the seeds that it sowed had found rich soil and had been growing ever since. How the world would burn as the sky did all those years ago. Even now one of those seeds were drifting toward this littler corner of the world.
Gloom and doom was always the most popular future to order, but ever seer knew that the future was always changing. A single person could alter the entire flow of history in the same way that a rock could change the flow of a stream.
Beyond this area of commerce was a grand market that led off from the working docks toward a city of wood and brick. The marketplace was split down the middle by a paved road that went on for as far as the eye could see and at the edge of her vision there was a tall man in fine robes being escorted by two taller men both armed with spears that gleamed in the morning sunlight as if they were made of metal. As she thought to dance a path of cast shadows down along this road a stab of pain shot through her face and she woke. Woke into a world of pain.

You can purchase the complete short story at Amazon by clicking here.   

  At iTunes by clicking here   

  At B&N by  clicking here.

  At Kobo by clicking here.

Thank you for visiting my site and please take a moment to visit the Empires Falling facebook page. If you are one of the first thirty people to like the page I am offering a choice of any of the short stories for free to you. Like the page and I will send to a text copy of story 1, 2 or 3. You get to pick.

 Facebook Link.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Empires Falling, The Release of The First Port in the Storm

The third short story that will introduce more characters from my epic fantasy novel series Empires Falling has been released and show become available at Amazon and iTunes as early as tomorrow.  Below you will see the cover for the 8,000 word short story. The sale price will be .99 cents. I think I will have to revisit the lead characters in at least one more short story before they become central to the first novel. 

My first love was scifi and fantasy fiction so writing it has been a thrill for me. I know that I have promised a free short story in the series and that will be the next to be released. It is really a matter of me transcribing what I have hand written to word perfect and when doing this the story always changes and I end up discovering new things about certain characters.

Okay enough about my writing process. Below is the Blurb (back cover description) of the story published today. I cannot tell you how it all turns out, but I can say that of all the characters that I have written about Miri has surprised me most with her strength and courage.

The First Port in The Storm is the third in a series of epic fantasy short stories that introduce the characters that will populate the Empires Falling novels. In this story Miri of the Ansha is the rarest kind of practitioner of the magical arts. She is a Mystic who has had her most precious magical gift stolen with the removal out of her eyes. Her eyes were given in payment to the witch who found a way to capture her. Now blind and on a river journey to an unknown place she is at the mercy of a sadistic captain who beats, rapes and brutalizes her as often as he can. Nearing the first port since this journey began Miri must risk all in a last chance at freedom through escape or death.

Okay that will be it today, please stumble this page on stumble upon and take a moment to visit the Empires Falling facebook page. It is new and so far has had not many visitors. You can visit be clicking here.

You can purchase the story at B&N by clicking here.