A Pair of Stories Within A Story

Linked below are two stories from The Golden Game, Book 3 of The Star Mages. I can publish these stories on my blog because they’re basically complete stories within the story; not much of the main plot of The Golden Game is developed here, so there are no spoilers presented. Within the novel, the stories served to back-develop the characters Falcon and Dolphin.

You can read these stories without reading The Star Mages, but in order for them to make a little better sense, here are some basic concepts from the trilogy.

Deep-Tier Magic — all magic operates by altering probabilities. “Deep-tier” magic alters probabilities at the molecular and quantum level of reality. What that means in effect is that deep-tier magic is fantasy magic. In The Star Mages, it is only possible with the help of one of the deep-tier talismans, the Star, the Crystal, or the Sword. Without these talismans, people can still do magic, but are limited to affecting probabilities of events that are indeterminate at the normal level of perception, which means a lot of what people usually call “psychic powers.”

The Star — this is the oldest of the deep-tier talismans and the only one to come into these stories within a story. Each of the deep-tier talismans is sentient and has a personality and is able to communicate with people. The Star is engaged in an attempt at social engineering, ostensibly to bring about an ideal society.

Star Mages — these are adepts who are empowered by the Star to make use of the deep-tier power. Star Mages are “immortal” in the sense of not aging, but they can be killed, and they tend not to live more than a few centuries before willing themselves to death. Also, Star Mages are not allowed to use the power openly where others can see. The Star wishes itself and its adepts to remain a closely-guarded secret.

The Background Realm — this is essentially the astral plane, world of dreams, or world of the imagination. Deep-tier mages, including Star Mages, are able to open gates into the Background Realm and actually enter it in the flesh.

Falcon — this is one of the two main characters. The Star Mages is written in alternating first-person, and Falcon is one of the viewpoint characters. He is the heir of the Star’s guardian, basically a second-in-command. He is also Dolphin’s unofficial husband. Other things about him will become clear in the stories. “Falcon” is his magical name; his given name is Correl Brannigan. Both of these stories, “Dolphin’s Ordeal” and “Falcon’s Journey,” are told from his point of view.

Dolphin — although not one of the viewpoint characters, Dolphin is very important in the story of the Star Mages. She is the Star’s “guardian,” basically the number one Star Mage and the one the Star talks to and through whom the Star works most often and most closely. Other things about her will become clear in the stories. “Dolphin” is her magical name. Her given name is never revealed.

“Dolphin’s Ordeal” is the first story chronologically and the first you should read. “Falcon’s Journey” is the second.

Hope you enjoy these!

Dolphin’s Ordeal

Falcon’s Journey

Image credit: rolffimages / 123RF Stock Photo

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