The Hammer of Fire
Three great families control almost every aspect of life in the great hidden dwarf citadel of Craggen Steep. They allow only members of their own extended families to rise to positions of prominence. In the midst of this highly stratified society we meet Dol Delius, a half-breed dwarf with Tree Shepherd ancestry. Because of his blood-taint he can never escape the lower levels of the realm.
His friend Milli, a halfing outsider, comes up with a plan to steal the legendary Hammer of Fire and make their own destiny in the world. Dol reluctantly agrees and sets in motion a chain of events that will have vast repercussions on not only his life but that of Craggen Steep itself.
Once they have the hammer Milli, Dol, and their dwarf companion Brogus, flee the great mountain fortress and head out into the world to seek their fortune. The Hammer of Fire takes them to the capital of the north, Das’von, where the energetic young First Citizen makes plans for world conquest.
From there they head south hoping to slay the greatest elemental the world has ever known and from whose very essence was forged the Hammer all those years ago.
My thinking in writing the Hammer of Fire was to examine the two concepts of a meritocracy and isolationism. Three powerful families control the great dwarf citadel of Craggen Steep and keep its location secret from the rest of the world. Young, energetic dwarfs within the city want to join Corancil as he builds his army of conquest while the tradition bound elder council resists these ideas.
The argument is that the citadel is safest hidden away from the rest of the world. It has served them well for 5,000 years and now is no time to change the status quo. They reward primarily dwarfs from the three families while dwarfs from lesser families have little chance of promotion. Half-breeds and other races have no chance at advancement and examining what happens when a society stops rewarding its best and brightest is one of the key philosophical ideas in The Hammer of Fire.
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Borrombus is a member of the powerful Blackiron family in Craggen Steep and while deeply entrenched with the powers-that-be he is also his own man. He wants to advance the cause of his family and in so doing threatens his nation.
Dol and Milli’s loyal friend isn’t the smartest of characters but he is loyal and he does care about his friends. Those are the kinds of qualities you need from your companions when going on an epic quest
The apprentice to the First Edos is a young Firefist who leaves the deep thinking to others.
Dol is a half-dwarf/half-tree shepherd whose tough skin allows him to do what no dwarf has even done before; handle the legendary Hammer of Fire. He is stoic, calm, and reluctant to act if not pushed by his friends but ownership of what is perhaps the mightiest weapon in the world is bound to influence anyone, isn’t it?
A halfing foundling living in Craggen Steep as an honored guest, perhaps better described as an honored prisoner. She is pampered in her gilded cage but yearns for more. With her stunning looks and manipulative heart she can make men do as she will. Will that be enough to save her when dealing with the great powers of the world?
The Black Rider is the leader of the most powerful nomadic band in the Sands. He hopes to unite the various tribes and fend off the eventually invasion by the man who would be Emperor.
A witch-woman wise to the ways of the world sees an opportunity for quick money in the companions and she isn’t shy about taking advantage of those not intelligent enough to watch their money wisely.
The headstrong young Blackiron is willing to do what it takes to further the plans of his family.