The last Tale of the Rose Knights, “Desert Peace,” went up on Daily Science Fiction today. It may not be the last forever — I still have a few I started that Jay Lake never had a chance to contribute to. I’ll have to take another look at them and see if I want to whip them into shape by myself.
This is the ending:
He stands there, the soldier, in a uniform so floral and pale pink that many armies would have rebelled to wear it. The Pink Knight is not so tall, but tall enough, and the yellow highlights of the startling tunic match the highlights in his hair. He carries a curious weapon, this soldier, a long thorn like a wooden needle, the end beaded with blood so bright red as to be almost purple.
The tourists come to look, sometimes even to pray, for that blood is always pure and fresh. The soldier does not move. He simply smiles as he stares into an eternity only he can see. Even in the desert, the horizon is finite, but his eyes are on distant stars and a sleepy ember that is invisible to those around him.
In his desert there is peace. The hawks hunt elsewhere. The coyotes pass silent under the mistress-moon who rules their night. Even the cactus thorns have softened a bit, so that rabbits and children might pass near the soldier.
Read the rest here at DSF.
A new Rose Knights flash fiction piece that I wrote with Jay Lake is up on DSF today, “Snowfire”:
nowfire should have been a cliche, with her brilliant face and her ways full of love and thorns. The Rose Knight of the Rose Knights, she strode the world wrapped in laughter and a charisma that could stun stone idols. She needed no sword for her battles. She could smile her way through walls and gates and brambled pits and talk the very monsters from their lairs, soothe the raging ocean, and humble the proudest men.
Snowfire’s colors were red-on-white, sanguinary and brilliant both in their scarlet repose. Bereft of her armor, sword and trappings of her station, she would have been a comely woman on the streets of any city. Imperious in her array, she was devastating to look upon.
Read the rest here.
Snowfire (c) by Matt McKay. License: Public domain
Rose de Rescht by Florian Moeckel (public domain)
A new flash fiction piece that I wrote with Jay Lake went up on Daily Science Fiction yesterday, but I was too busy decorating the Christmas tree with family to remember to post about it. So here, a day late, I give you Rose de Rescht:
Rose de Rescht
by Jay Lake and Ruth Nestvold
Rose de Rescht was something of a mystery among the other Rose Knights. Said to have come from a land more mythical than real, a land that had once born the legendary name of Persia, the name she bore herself was Dutch, and the language she spoke was that of remote Chemeketa. Known as the Fuchsia Knight, the color she wore was an impossibly deep pink, so dark it was almost purple, a shade decadent and exotic, especially among the Armies of the Moon.
Read the rest here.
Daily Science Fiction is starting a new round of stories in the Tales of the Rose Knights that I wrote with Jay Lake. Today, “Descanso Dream”:
Descanso is the smallest of the Rose Knights, and perhaps the strangest. He is a dream made flesh, a pale man with skin the white of the ocean’s dead, riding a horse of fog and silk. His banners trail behind him like a wind from the Orient. His smile gleams of starlight and the gentle thoughts of a loving woman.
(c) Rakel Leah Mogg, Creative Commons License
The Tale of the Rose Knights that went live on DSF this week is based on a rose I actually have in my garden. And here she is, Black Baccara:
Black Baccara in my garden
You can read the other Rose Knight tales on DSF here.
Last year, I got back to submitting some short stories I wrote with the late Jay Lake. The first in a series of flash fiction pieces which will be appearing in Daily Science Fiction came out today, “Osiana.”
The characters of the stories in “The Tales of the Rose Knights” are all named after roses. Here is the real Osiana:
Osiana Rose, M. Israel
Hope you enjoy this story and those to follow!
Good news on the submission front! A story series that I wrote with Jay Lake has sold to Daily Science Fiction. It comprises 11 stories, most of them flash (1000 words or less). 2 of the stories are a little over.
As I’ve mentioned here before, I was revising some collaborations with Jay before he died, but after his death I had to take a break. A few months ago, I was at the point where I could tackle our mutual projects again. Originally I had thought to publish these connected stories as an ebook, but short story collections tend to sell maybe a copy a month and garner reviews along the lines of “these are too short!”
So I decided to give it a shot through the traditional submission route first before putting together an ebook. 🙂
The conceit of the Rose Knights is that all of them are named after actual roses, and the colors of the roses play a role in the factions fighting against each other in the world of Hy Rugosa. One of the titular roses in the series is Eden Rose. Here an image from my garden:
Just a short note: Shadow of Stone (The Pendragon Chronicles) got its first review today, and a very enthusiastic one it is. 🙂 You can read it here.
Given that wonderful endorsement, I would like to remind you that Shadow of Stone is free today for the Kindle!
Those of you who subscribe to Daily Science Fiction, the story in your mailbox today is my flash piece, “The Magician of Words.” I hope you enjoy it!