The Desolation of Smaug is for Children

I’m actually kind of a fan, right? Who isn’t? I mean, sure, the book The Hobbit; There and Back Again was pretty good, and naturally the cinema has adjusted the story for today’s audience, but what is fantasy adventure really about?

Monsters? Certainly.

Dragons? Usually.

Riches? Often times.

Adversity? There ya go.

Adversity requires a character of resolve, and that character’s resolve must be tested, and is usually tested externally: Orcs attack, but also internally: Bilbo eventually is unable to fight off the ring’s effect.

Now, I don’t about you, but I’m an adult, and I want my fantasy adventure full guts, blood, and gore. So, I wrote my own fantasy adventure, and I’ve glossed over it in recent posts. From Blood is the tale of a castrated mute named Dysart, who gave his soul to the Daemon, Salamandrus, in order to wield bloodmagic.

Dysart’s resolve is tested every step of the way: from crashing ashore onto an island where the sun never rises, to fighting off hordes of gruesome beasts, to watching friends fall in battle, to battling his own bloodlust, which grows every time he imbibes.

“Apologies…I am myself now,” he mumbled. “I finally understand why Fausto did not venture here himself…I thought it was the wounds, but consumption of blood would have healed him.”
“Yes,” Erimte’ ventured. “Fausto was turning, and feared becoming what Tigueron is now…what you are becoming.”

Dysart is tested externally by the Daemon, and tested internally by his bloodlust. It’s an amazing book, really, and I’m excited to say it will be available soon. With a little luck, I’ll have the cover art on display in another week or two.

You’re not going to want to miss this one.

Oh, wait! You’re probably wondering how a mute talks, right? Ok, ok, here.
Dysart returned to stretching his skin, and jabbing blood into his throat. Randall knelt beside him remaining quiet. Once the completion of branding culminated, the scream followed suit.

Bloodmagic has a few different categories; runes, brands, seals, summons, gates, and of course, imbibing. Branding is basically tattooing blood into the skin.

Pretty cool, right? More to come soon. Thanks, everyone.

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Expedition

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“I’m getting some rest,” Wilheim said. “We should rise early on the morrow. Jorunhaal, our king has placed you in charge, but I am the one who knows the worst kind of danger is the one the eye does not see.”

Expedition

This short fantasy adventure borders on horror; a short story written with a hint of rustic appeal.

There’s a king, Eidon, from a land called Ilteriel, and after defeating some barbarian tribes, his wizards find some sort of power. King Eidon sends a group of men to investigate by way of sailing the southern ocean, a place believed uninhabited, but the expedition find more than they bargain for.

Jorunhaal, a warrior of the heroic type, is set to lead the party of the expedition, but the mage, Wilheim, argues that the island upon which they landed is fraught with hidden dangers. After a slight argument, they all go to sleep on solid ground for the first time in a month.

After Jorunhaal chooses a traveling party, the group wanders away from the beach. In grassy hills they are set upon by small werewolves. A battle ensues, and one party member falls while another flees to a watchtower.

Inside the watchtower, the found compatriot attacks the group. The wizard of the party quickly dispatches him, and now frightened, the remaining members of the expedition try to return to the beach.

Arriving at the beach proves just as dangerous; lightning tears their ship asunder, and so the entire expedition treks back to the watchtower. There, they hope to camp for the night and in the morning they planned to seek a different way off the island. After all, the wizard of the group believed others had lived on the island, and that they had left somehow, but the night doesn’t end, and eventually, the wizard convinces the group that the only way off the island is to destroy the evil, which lives beneath it.

This story was my first fantasy adventure, and was meant to help me create a world so that I might write a full length novel. I did. It’s called From Blood and will be released soon, but that’s a tale for another time.

Perhaps the genre fantasy adventure isn’t accurate; both stories, Expedition and From Blood, are quite gruesome and might be better catagorized as fantasy horror, or maybe adventure horror. I don’t know.

At any rate, check this one out. It’s free. If you read it, please rate and review it.

Click Dennisauthor.com to be taken to the short stories page. While you’re there, nab your free copy of Losing Human.

Losing Human

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Losing Human is one of my sci fi shorts, and available for free at smashwords

Just search for Losing Human.

Normally I’d put the link up directly to the story, but it’s undergoing some revisions.

Smashwords has a premium catalogue. They use this to provide authors with a broader array of sales potential. However, it requires a bit of work on the author’s part- totally worth it.

First I had to fix some minor stylistic issues. Then I bought a new cover. Like it? Cost 5 bucks on Fiverr.

Synopsis

Losing Human is a story of Doctor Steven Heisler, roboticist. He is a cold and calculating individual struggling to obliterate the limitations placed on man kind.

Starting with his girlfriend, Great’s, grandfather’s funeral, Heisler is distant and critical. Then, Heisler receives a call from his compatriots of Project Human. The cat MRC, or a robot cat, is successful.

The four team leaders of Project Human; Heisler, Schlessinger, Dekker, and Jenkins, are all set to move onto the next phase of Project Human-uploading the brainwaves of an ape into a robot ape body. During these trials, Heisler’s mother passes and he is faced with confronting human emotions.

After facing his family, Heisler concludes that emotions are just chemical reactions and have-or should not have-an effect on the physical structure; the human form. Heisler redoubles his efforts to push Project Human to the final phase-uploading human brainwaves into a robot.

Unfortunately, the trials with Franklin the ape do not go well, and Project Human faces funding issues. Heisler decides to bypass the linear outline, and convinces his team to upload his brainwaves into a rudimentary robot body, which is Bluetooth compliant in order to access the data stream.

Trouble ensues for everyone when his human corpse is discovered.

Review

Aaron Dennis’s writing is clear and compelling. He uses several tech-y words and situations, making the story believable. Losing Human raises many questions in today’s technological advances. Many intellectuals believe that human-computer evolution is inevitable. Part of this story reminded me of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein.
Is eternal life possible? I believe that it is, but in Heaven and not through a machine. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if this was possible and the folks inside of the world’s elite inner circles have their own personalized machines to live on. This short would make an excellent episode of Twilight Zone. I really enjoyed it and look forward to more from Mr. Dennis. I recommend this short for anyone, especially sci-fi lovers. 4/5 Stars

You can find the whole review on Goodreads

I’m trying to jazz up my website Dennisauthor.com Once everything is said and done, there’ll be a page devoted to this and other short stories. So, stay tuned for more.

If you read Losing Human, please rate and review it.

I also accept contribution of fan art based on any of my stories.

Shadowman, coming to life

I walked out the door. The orange street lamps clicked on as though they awaited my presence. Streaks of orange and pink fire lit the western sky as the sun set. I was unusually tired. My feet felt heavy, and I wanted to sit and close my eyes. I yawned as I stretched my arms over my head and pressed onward.

As previously blogged, our protagonist-called Adja because he is a descendant of the African tribe-witnessed the murder of a Shadowman. Receiving the dying man’s essence, Adja passes out. When he wakes, an old Creole woman is tending to him.

She reveals herself to be a practitioner of Voodoo among other things. In order to stay alive in his changing world, Adja has to learn what she has to teach, and quickly. Shortly after their first conversation, the old woman reveals that it was her grandson who was murdered, and that the murderer-a follower of Snake-will hunt for Adja.

Adja-now a follower of Bear-must learn hexes, how to communicate with nature, and communicate with spirits. This is mostly done by traveling into the Otherside, a go between for the worlds of men and spirits.

Spirits in this case doesn’t refer exclusively to the awareness of deceased people. In fact, it mostly means the essence of things, or the ocassional living being that never had a body-Carlos Castaneda’s “Inorganic Beings”.

A funny thing I found when creating this story is that there was a game called Shadowman that also dealt with the practices of Voodoo. Unfortunately, I had already submitted my story for print, but it isn’t a big deal, I guess. The plot and setting are totally different, and the worlds in which the characters live function under different rules. Besides, that other game company took one of my ideas after it was in print, so all’s well that ends well.

But back to the story-

So Adja trains for his final showdown with the murderer, the follower of Snake. Upon avenging the death of the old woman’s grandson, the spirit of Bear appears to accept Adja as a true practitioner, a true Shadowman. The story does not end there.

Since the novella is written as four short stories, this only comprises the first. The following stories subsequently pick up from the end of the previous, or within about 6 months.

The second story involves Bear calling Adja to action against a “Ghost Spirit”, a follower of an animal guide who is no longer in existance. In this case it is a woman, who follows Dire Wolf-a creature that went extinct a long time ago.

This, again, is a concept from Castaneda’s books, but I don’t delve too deeply into it. The focus of this story is to bring other Shadowmen to Adja’s aide, and so we see the return of Rat and Jackal, characters touched upon in the first story.

The three warriors undergo some crazy rituals to find where the ghost spirit is hiding. When they locate her, they travel through a vortex, and into her plane of existence where they do battle.

For anyone looking into a new age-ish, spiritual, dark, fictional read, Shadowman is a great way to go. You can learn more about Shadowman by checking out the publisher’s site here DamnationBooks

watching the trailer here Youtube

or plus 1-ing the google page here Shadowman

Stay tuned for more.

Want to review Shadowman or feature it?
Drop by www.dennisauthor.com and leave me a message.