Bob Greenberger tests the limits of life in Tales of the Crimson Keep

I don’t consider myself a funny writer. I can’t dash off humor with the ease that my pal Peter David does. I know better than to even try.

As a result, “Assessment”, my contribution may be the most serious offering found in Tales of the Crimson Keep.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Since I am teaching these days, it occurred to me that we had not done anything that tested the students’ skills. I decided to take love-struck and somewhat awkward Athis and the more self-possessed Klaria and pair them up, strip them of their magical skills, and see what happened.

They had to go on a quest, which allowed me to expand the world of the Master. We knew there were Demon Wars and other sorcerers, but what else was there? I do enjoy the worldbuilding aspects of a story so that was a highlight.

I also had to ensure they each had a chance to shine on their own while working in tandem, which also allowed me to address their relationship as allies and maybe friends. This also meant getting them to be intimate with one another, to trust one another, without a sexual component. I was reminded of the training Steve Austin and his female OSO partner had to do in Cyborg, which meant extracting water from their urine (ewww).

Does it work within the more amusing context of the anthology? I hope so considering it’s the longest solo effort in the book. By all means, find out for yourself and let us know with a review at Goodreads, Amazon, or anywhere else.

Tales of the Crimson Keep , the newly renovated edition, goes on sale in August.

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