Karras, who humans mistakenly call "Carrow," is not a typical Rughìr’thai’âch, "Earth-Born," or dwarf. In fact, in serving his family’s shipping and trading business, he has taken on too many human ways in place of those of his people. No wonder that, in attempting to "barter" for marriage with the fiery and dour Skirra — "Sliver" — of the fallen family of Yêarclág, he has bungled the deal for years. Dismissed once more by her to salve his heart’s wounds, this time those wounds get salted with the unwanted assistance of a blustery clan-kin — Fiáh’our, or the great "Hammer-Stag."

The old honored warrior has his own notion of what Karras needs. To Fiáh’our, honorable barter for love and marriage is akin to one battle after another. And only the way of their people’s warriors can see Karras to victory... over himself, first of all.

May their people’s eternal ancestors, the Bäynæ, watch over them — especially to keep them from each other’s throats. [Short Story, Part 1 of 3, ~26k words]

About "Tales from the world of the Noble Dead Saga"...

No knowledge of the Noble Dead Saga is necessary to read, comprehend, and enjoy any "tale." Readers new to this world can step right into it through any of these short works. They are independent of the saga's main plots/stories, though some minor connections will be apparent to readers of the saga.

Tales center upon minor characters, places, and events left along the way in the saga’s volumes. As well, there are some new characters, places, and certainly events never before seen in the saga.

For those who have read part or all of the saga to date, you may expand what you already know about the world, cultures, times and places, and favorite minor characters left behind. In other words, "tales" can be a little treat straight from us to tide you over in a year's wait for the next volume in the Noble Dead Saga.

—Barb & J.C.