The Shining Cog (The Way of the Gun, A Bushido Western Anthology)

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WayOfTheGun

Alexander Copperspring was just a Cog in the Machine. A proud Cog, follower of the Clockworker, tinker, and engineer. He had come to Bowman’s Station on behalf of the Midlands and Pacific Railroad Company, to help build the station and prepare the infrastructure needed for the railroad on its long way to the coast. That had been six years ago, and while the station was ready, the railroad was still slow in coming to the valley.That was when the Martials came to town. The lead Martial was belligerent and showed his disdain as he explained that Judge Wilcox had ruled that no proper claim was filed for the settlement and the valley had now been claimed by Hanson Cumberland, the cattle baron. As trespassers on this land, the Judge was giving them 24 hours to grab their possessions and leave the valley.

Alex’s temper, and his mouth, got the better of him. He railed against the Judge and his “justice” on behalf of the man with the biggest bag of gold. Before he knew it, he’d managed to challenge the Martial to a duel to decide the matter. But before the Martial could drag him to the Circle and gun him down as an unarmed man, an old drifter spoke up, invoking some obscure clause of the Way to gain Alex another week to prepare for the duel.

As the Martials rode out of town, Alex realized the situation he was in. He had a week to build a gun, learn how to use it, and then fight for his life and his community. A week left to live, his only help, this weather-beaten old stranger who offered to teach him The Way of the Gun.

The Way of the Gun Anthology is finally out! The e-book is available for $2.99 on PayHip, and for $4.99 on Kindle (Amazon must have its cut…), but will soon be appearing in all your favorite e-book venues. The paperback version is available for $9.49 (marked down from $9.99) from Amazon.

The Way of the Gun


The Cross of Columba

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Agent Bryan Teague travels from the London offices to a remote area of Scotland on the call of Lord Pennyfarthing, a self-proclaimed scientist and specialist in ancient and rare fauna. Agent Teague arrives to find his skepticism of Pennyfarthing’s previous follies challenged upon finding a traumatized valet and a dying English lord with an incredible fish story…

This story was formerly under the code name “Northern Mists”. Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris commissioned this short story for their Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences universe as part of the Tales from the Archives Season 2 (or Volume II) anthology. They released “The Cross of Columba” in audio form as Tales from the Archives Volume II, Episode 7. The e-book version of the story is available for just $0.99 for the Kindle, Nook, and from Smashwords and Kobo as well. I really enjoyed the opportunity to play in their world and add to the history of the Ministry. Please let Tee and Pip know if you’d like to hear me tell more stories in their world.

The Cross of Columba


Some reviews for The Cross of Columba:

Welcome to Paradox

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Lars Keller is history. Literally. Sentenced for temporal crimes he has not yet committed, Lars is caught in an endless cycle of paradox unless he can find a way to restore the timeline… from the outside.

This story was first released on the podcast Every Photo Tells… and was nominated for a Parsec Award in 2010. The text has been released on Smashwords and for the Nook, iBooks and now for the Kindle for only 99 cents.

Welcome to Paradox


A Walk in the Park

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Professor Crackle and his assistant Miss Titania Bang have arrived in Darwin to meet with an informant. Their friend is providing them cover by playing in a local cricket match, if only they can arrive on time. But a lot can happen during a simple walk in the park.

This story is a teaser for my upcoming Adventures of Crackle & Bang series. It provides a taste of the world of the Eternal Empress. This is one of several short stories available in the Special Steampunk Issue of FlagShip. The text only version of the magazine is available at for the Kindle for just $3.49. Audio version will be available soon.

FlagShip Steampunk Special Issue


The Gift

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Margaret visits a train station to reminisce about the past, but she is about to learn that another hand from the past has shaped her present.

This story was first released on the podcast Every Photo Tells… and was nominated for a Parsec Award in 2010. Now the text is available in print for just $0.99 from Smashwords and in the Kindle, the Nook, and iBooks stores as well.

The Gift