As of next week, there will be two more pieces of writing in The Thirteenth Hour universe – two short stories that serve as figurative bookends to the book, though they are meant to stand alone. Putting them out has taken much longer than I anticipated, but luckily, I’ve had a lot of help from beta readers and my brother, all of whom were invaluable in spotting areas that needed fine tuning.
1.) “A Shadow in the Moonlight”: a young hunter accidentally interrupts a spell which literally turns him into a shadow, only able to venture out into the world by night, where interactions with other people leave him with such intense anxiety that he avoids them altogether. He is trapped in this state while encountering an injured runaway, whom he decides to help, despite the personal pain it causes. I realize this description makes it sounds like a vampire story, but it isn’t, really, though the intention was to make it more gothic in nature than the original book, as the majority of the action takes place in a land of seemingly perpetual night (sort of like Brandon Lee’s The Crow). It’s set a number of years prior to the events in The Thirteenth Hour and written in the same new adult/young adult style as the book.
2.) “Falling Leaves Don’t Weep”: an elderly king reflects on a life of self-absorption and hedonism after a falling leaf blows into his bedroom one night when he’s unable to sleep. Takes place several decades after the events of The Thirteenth Hour. In contrast to the other story, this one is more of a psychological story, as almost all of the narrative takes place internally, in the King’s head.
Each of the stories features small cameos by characters from The Thirteenth Hour, though the purpose was to highlight characters and situations that didn’t really get discussed in the book or in some cases, tie in with a sequel.
The stories will be available on Smashwords and Amazon. I’m currently putting the finishing touches on them for the 3/20 release date. Stay tuned!
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