03/25/2020 Snippet, TRADE NEGOTIATIONS.

Yes, I need a new name.


The good news was, the garrison was still in one piece. The bad news was, it was facing a fire elemental. Jimmy told himself that it was a small one, at least, which was maybe true in relative terms but didn’t really make him feel any better.

Quawk never had a garrison when the Dominion was in charge, mostly because its former masters only cared about it and similar huddles whenever it came time to get another batch of human slaves for ‘processing.’ The Alliance had different opinions, especially since the Dominion had been pushed back all the way to the Mississippi river. Alliance artificers had thrown up quick bastions all along the river, and this one looked as stolid and sturdy as the rest: the classic star fort style, only with six sides in order to prevent the Dominion from turning the whole thing into a giant pentagram.

It was also made out of concrete, which is why the elemental couldn’t just burn it down. It couldn’t fly, either. Could shoot fire balls just fine, though: Jimmy winced as he saw one ignite some poor bastard of a Quawk peasant who decided to run at the exact wrong second.

“Crap,” he said. “This thing is one of the mean ones.” Beside him, Leo nodded reluctantly.

“That happens,” he said. “Fire elementals don’t like cages. Back home we always have to let them travel in the open when they go anywhere.”

Jimmy stared at him. “Virginia lets elementals wander around unsupervised?” he asked, in incredulous tones.

Leo shrugged. “Until one shows that it can’t be trusted, milord. Fire elementals aren’t even the ones who you have to worry about most. They know enough to be careful.”

“Right.” Jimmy decided to let it be. Virginians were simply weird that way. Everybody knew it.

1 Comment

  • acat says:

    Only for the title of the collection, not for this short story.
    p.s. not to curse you or anything but I’m hoping for another novella.

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