THE VERY BEST OF KATE ELLIOTT preview: “The Gates of Joriun”

In celebration of the impending release of The Very Best of Kate Elliott, we are sharing story excerpts from the collection.

Today’s preview comes from “The Gates of Joriun.”

magicians say the sun rises every morning, and so far I have found
that to be true. I depend on the sun; it is how I mark time, by that
and by the food the woman brings me twice daily and by the unending
cycle of the moon. I have discovered also that the stars move in the
sky each night—when they are not obscured by clouds—and that I
can trace pictures in them and see those pictures again and again if
only I am patient enough at night and through the seasons. I try to
sleep during the day, except for the food. During the day it is
worst, for then there are people about and all of them eager to abuse

magicians taught about the stars also, but I did not listen to them
about those matters. I was a younger woman—how much younger I no
longer know—and newly married. My nights did not involve gazing at
stars. Now some of what they said has come back to me and I hoard it.
I must hoard what scraps I can because as the days run one into the
next, I lose more and more of my past; like the moon my memory waxes
and wanes.

I must remember. If I do not remember, then I become nothing, a
mindless animal in a cage hung before the gates of Joriun, and then
the king wins and my brother loses.

remember the magicians.

The Very Best of Kate Elliott will be available for sale by all finer outlets on February 10, 2015.

For more on The Very Best of Kate Elliott, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover art by Julie Dillon.

Design by Elizabeth Story.