I don't always know everything about my characters when I first meet them. Sure, I have a general sense of who they are, but I get to know them as they move through their story arc. In the process, they reveal themselves a little at a time.
When I came to the end of "Dahlia's Feast" (published by Aoife's Kiss last year), I wanted to know more about Dahlia and Brawnstone. Here's the set-up for that tale:
Dahlia, the last human child, has been summoned to a banquet in her honor by the Elders of the great council. Her escort, Brawnstone the trollgre, must carry her through the dangerous ruins of an ancient human city, deep into the abandoned warehouse district where the feast is to be held. No one knows this little girl's dark secret -- not even Dahlia herself.
Two months later, I wrote "Stone for Brains," presenting another view of Brawnstone, this time from the perspective of a new character—Eyan, a skin-changer. I wanted to know where the mighty trollgre came from and how he'd been chosen to break Dahlia out of her compound. The Fifth Di… published this tale last year, making it possible to share more of Brawnstone's backstory.
Then I wrote "While She Sleeps, Mountains Tremble," which takes us into Dahlia's compound and introduces her caretakers. This story was included in the Triangulation: Morning After anthology, and it may cause you to look differently at the events in "Dahlia's Feast."
"Dahlia and the Ronin" picks things up immediately following "Dahlia's Feast" and includes Eyan in a starring role. You can read it here for free in the latest issue of Perihelion Science Fiction. There may be even more Brawnstone & Dahlia stories in the future, as long as these characters keep inspiring me to write about them.
This month, I'm raffling off "Dahlia's Feast" in MOBI, EPUB, and PDF formats. Current subscribers are already entered, and so far Roland Clarke, Gef Fox, and Madeline Mora-Summonte have each won a copy. Congratulations! Subscribe today, and you'll be entered into this week's drawing.
As always, thanks for reading.