I am thrilled to announce that you can now read my steampunk retelling of the Battle of Jericho, “Blow ‘Em Down,” in Beneath Ceaseless Skies Special 5th Anniversary Double Issue #151!
The full text of the story is now available on BCS‘s website for free, along with the rest of the fantastic stories in the issue. On that page, you will find download links for all e-reader types that you can also use to acquire the issue for free.
Of course, I would encourage you to purchase the issue for your e-readers because I think it’s worthwhile to support good art, and I hope you will think “Blow ‘Em Down” qualifies as good art. If you agree, you can make that wallet-busting $0.99 purchase at Amazon or at Weightless Books.
And now for your teaser,
From our brass band’s vantage point at the Gilgal plains, the glass dome was impenetrable. An immense central copper tube supported it, using a full city block for its foundation and generating energy for the whole town by absorbing the sun rays trapped within the glass. One skygate operated through the top of the dome, opening only to let merchant airships and their escorts in and out. The ships floated by so high, we could barely make out what was seared into their taut material: giant brands bearing profiles of the cityscape. The same image, embossed in a black pattern, circumnavigated the dome’s bottom edge. A single word in bold typeset appeared above each repetition: Jericho.
They never sent so much as a volley our way. Who could blame them? We looked a sorry mess after forty years spent crossing the desert, but we were many. Forty days our parents had been told, but as it turned out, solar-powered chariots don’t work so well in the desert. The salt from the Red Sea air had rusted most of their steel frames within days of the crossing, leaving us with only a handful, and those were barely powerful enough to raise one person off the sand at a time. Then there was the pillar of smoke blocking out half the sky. Little sun meant less energy for our solar cells to regenerate. When the pillar lit up like a fireball that forgot to fly at night, we tried to mine the heat, but we never could get the calibrations right.
Again, you can read the rest of “Blow ‘Em Down” right here.