Character Wars – Sound-off Board

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    Timothy Bateson

    Sixteen enter, but there can be only one winner
    As part of the #OWSCyCon2019 our wonderful Fantasy authors have put together a Battle Royale – and you get to decide the winner!

    • 16 Characters Enter!
    • Each pair face off over 4 rounds
    • You vote based on the character descriptions.
    • Like what you see? Click the link to buy the book!

    And here’s where the characters get to sound-off about their abilities and show off their personalities.

    Be warned, these folks will not be pulling any punches (though we do ask that authors keep it PG13-Rated), as they sound-off about their chances in this fight to take home the title.

    Voting will start at midnight EST as follows. Winners of each round will be tallied just before the next round starts, and the winner of each round will progress to the next.

    • Round 1 – May 16th
    • Round 2 – May 17th
    • Semi-Final – May 18th
    • Finals – May 19th

    The winner will be announced May 20th, and crowned “#OWSCyCon2019 Fantasy Characters Battles Champion”

    Click Here to Vote



    Hayley and GavinName’s Hayley. Some call me Squire Hayseed, mostly them that want to wind up with a sword through them. I work for Ser Gavin, yeah, I know you heard of him. Everyone has. He’s just the most famous knight ever and let’s all throw rose petals and candy at him.

    He picked me out of all the other squires to be his. To learn from him. I might look scrawny but don’t let that fool you. My life’s been nothing but surviving. Survived on the streets, survived being sentenced to hanging, survived becoming a squire, survived fighting against real knights, survived shit you can’t imagine. Believe me, I’ll survive this too. Even if I have to fight with a broken sword stuck in my thigh and my own blood on my sword’s grip, I won’t stop for nothing.



    “Jimbone? Doesn’t a jimbone connect to your thighbone? Malice muses for a moment. “Then again I’ve been bettter at breaking bones than reconnecting them.” She turns away for a moment as she thinks of something else.

    “Redneck vs Valkyrie..this ought to be fun!”



    “Modders help Captain.”

    “No. Say pirates.”


    Ugh. Modders help Captain. Fight. Bite. Steal clink clink.”

    “Ya ya. Lotsa clink clink. Ha ha. Lotsa modders.”

    “Ya ya. Lots modders, too. Like a thousand, or twelve.”

    “Tell story, too.”

    “Ya ya. Tell Ode Hogar.”

    “No, Big Boogah.”

    “Ode Hogar!”

    “Wait. Cannon fight – BEEEeeeeellllllccchhhh!”

    “Ha ha! Big cannon.”

    ”Ya ya. Big cannon.”

    “Kay kay, so, modders fight, bite, tell story, steal clink clink. Vote for modders.”

    “Ya ya. Vote. I I I I.”

    “I I I I.”




    D.L. Gardner

    Why! Look at all these handsome and beautiful heroes we have here! So enticing. Come and sit with me awhile and tell me all about your brave and courageous feats, where you’re from, and who your most threatening rivals are. I’ll see what is within my power to help your most noble and worthy cause.

    I have tea. A warm campfire. A cozy tent. The stars are shining above us. And I can heal your wounds. Surely you have time to sit with me awhile.

    My name is Layla, and I was born at night… Come talk to me.



    Aye I’m Asher, a shapeshifter from Flame Mountain.  I be a knife-throwing Mountain Man at times and a flame-spewing dragon at other.  Cross my path if ye dare.


    Between her acting skills, uncanny physical prowess, and some lessons from Peter about cheating at cards, Vi was a force to be reckoned with when the pair headed south. The two were thick as thieves, and eventually found themselves in post-war New Orleans running a scam as a medium and her assistant. It was all a silly game, a way to snub her aunt along with the rest of the world – until the day she started to hear the dead whispering. Suddenly, Prudence’s strange behavior started to make sense, and Vi found herself at the mercy of a long line of ghosts with business to finish. Sure, sometimes it could be lucrative, such as when she got the dirt she needed to blackmail a former confederate colonel into marrying her. But most of the time, ghosts were just a nuisance.

    She’d intended to leave her sham marriage and split the spoils with Peter, but as their feelings deepened, she panicked. Vi had already lost so much, and the idea of losing someone else nearly broke her. So to protect him from her powers (and protect herself from her feelings), she left her partner and the spirit world behind. Until one fateful night when everything changed…

    From Ch 1 of No Rest for the Wicked

    Viola Thorne preferred to bathe by moonlight. Perhaps it was the quiet chirps of the crickets or the splash of stars above, but something about the nights here at the end of the world called out to her.

    After weeks of aching muscles, she’d managed to reinforce the natural hot spring with stones from all over the ranch to build the perfect niche for soaking. Sulfurous steam rose off the water and eddied around her head and shoulders while the rest of her luxuriated in the gentle currents of heat.

    A half-empty bottle of whiskey kept a waxed paper parcel company on the edge. Vi reached inside the package and pulled out a fragrant hunk of soap—the last of what she’d brought from back East four years earlier. No telling when she’d be able to get more, but she worked the bubbles through her hair and scalp with gusto. The smell of lilacs rose from the lather to combat the reek of rotten eggs emanating from the spring. Vi breathed it deep into her lungs as she closed her eyes against the tide of foam.

    A sensation as light and dangerous as hornet wings fluttered on the back of her neck and slowed her hands. Miles away from anywhere anyone might possibly want to go, she should have been safe from prying eyes here in the pool, even in broad daylight.

    All the same, someone was watching.

    Unwilling to let the peeping Tom know she was on to him, Vi went back to washing her hair. She listened for the telltale crack of a twig or the whisper of cloth to indicate the direction of the infiltrator’s approach. If it came down to it, she could always reach out with her other sense, but that was reserved for special occasions these days.

    She leaned her head back to rinse, the lather floating around her tinged a dull red from the henna she used to muddy her identity. Though the chance of being recognized way out here remained remote, Vi favored distancing herself from her old life wherever she could. Her chestnut hair was a small sacrifice for obscurity.

    The frontier night stretched out quiet and undisturbed before her, yet the prickling awareness spreading across her shoulders told her the invading presence somehow drew nearer. Beneath the water’s surface, she brushed her fingers against her garter and the knife she always kept strapped to her calf. Having a jackrabbit for a stalker would be far more likely than encountering some poor soul wandering the prairie, but naked and alone (and if she was being honest, more than a little inebriated) out in a distant corner of her ranch, she couldn’t take that risk.

    With a deep breath, she reached into herself and quested for the feelings that always tickled at the edges of her consciousness. Reaching out with her mind, she washed through the waiting embers of her long-repressed senses. They flared to life, hot and sharp despite her years of denial. Vi allowed the unexpected feeling of satisfaction to curl the corner of her mouth before she returned to the task at hand.

    Her audience stood behind her, his decidedly unrabbitlike outline burning vivid and blue inside her skull. In one fluid motion, her blade flashed moon-bright and hurtled toward the place he stood. A hollow “thunk” told her it had hit the tree behind him, just as she’d expected from the color of his aura.

    “Are you crazy?” the ghost cried, patting his chest where the knife had passed straight through him. “You could kill someone like that!”

    He took a few noiseless steps away from the offending blade, as if it intended to jump out of the tree and bite him.

    “You’re already dead,” she mocked. “What are you so worried about?”

    “What if I wasn’t?”

    With a shrug and a few splashes, Vi made her way over to the makeshift stone bench beneath the water’s surface and settled upon it. “I knew what I was doing.”

    “Then what, pray tell, did you hope to accomplish with your little trick?” The insubstantial form crossed his arms and peered at her from under the brim of his transparent bowler hat. Even in death, the fine cut of his clothes marked him as an outsider the same way his accent marked him as a New Englander.

    Vi twisted her hair into a coil at the top of her head before breathing out a contented sigh and resting against a pillow of moss. “I was hoping it would make you go away. So, if you don’t mind?” Her fingers fluttered in a gesture of dismissal and she closed her eyes.

    A few silent seconds ticked by, and she dared to hope he’d go before his curiosity shattered the quiet again. “Where did you even pull that knife from?”

    He craned his neck as if he could see beneath the silver ripples of the pool. Vi’s head snapped forward, face red from more than the heat of the spring. “It was strapped to my leg, you degenerate. Now go away. I want to finish my bath in peace.”

    The ghost removed his hat and simpered, “Please, I must speak with you.”

    “No. What you must do is move on and stop bothering the living. I’m out of the business of running errands for the dead, thank you very much.” She traced shallow, annoyed furrows in the water with her fingers.

    “But you don’t even know what I want.”


    “It’s my wife, you see—”

    “Still no.”

    “There are these men and—”

    “Definitely no.”

    “We owe them some money—”

    “I can keep this up all night,” she warned.

    “But they’re going to—”



    Vi raised her hands above the water and moved them like a conductor as she sang to the tune of a new song that had been making the rounds. “I’m not interested in helping, all the live-long day.” She let her hands drop back into the water with a splash.

    If he could breathe, his chest would have been heaving in anger. In his current state, the ghost had to settle for pulling a sour face. “Well, I had to try. My wife is—was—my whole life.” He donned his spectral hat and turned to leave, mumbling to himself, “He warned you that she wouldn’t help.”

    “Yep, he was right,” Vi called lazily. Then the water surged around her as she sat forward with sudden interest. “Wait. Who warned you I wouldn’t help?” After the lengths she’d gone to to disappear, there shouldn’t be anyone for hundreds of miles who knew about her “special talent.”

    “Will you help me if I tell you?” the ghost asked, hope written in the lines of his gently glowing face.

    Vi squinted and sniffed. “I can guarantee I won’t help you if you don’t.”

    The spirit smiled and waved his hands in imitation of her earlier display. “I’m not interested in telling, all the live-long day.”

    She glared at the ripples on the pool. Not knowing the identity of her referrer was going to eat at her, but the information alone couldn’t be worth the price of dealing with him.

    Hat in hand, he tried again. “Forgive me. Please? I promise, I’ll tell you the whole sorry tale of how I found out about you as soon as you agree to help me.”

    “No wonder you’ve gotten yourself into trouble,” Vi spat. “You shouldn’t offer to pay someone up front; you need to hold onto whatever it is for leverage.”

    “All right. Then I promise to tell you after you help me.”

    “Nope. Still not interested. It would take a lot more than that to get me involved.”

    His face fell for a moment before he brightened. “Well, there’s always the gold.”

    Vi’s smirk returned. “You didn’t say anything about gold before.”

    Read the full chapter or grab your copy of No Rest for the Wicked now



    Captain Rafe MorrowHello everyone, Captain Rafe Morrow here. Nice to meet you all, and to say hello. Looking forward to this, I do love a good competition. My crew and I are currently in the Lost Sea, hence the slightly tardy arrival; spellcaster communications can be a bit spotty out here.

    Now I believe I’m to do some proper introductions, and explain a bit about myself. I’m captain of the sailing ship, Celestial Jewel, and we protect the people of the Outer Islands, both living and dead, from monsters and other magical threats. I’m also God of Souls, in charge of the After World and sorting out the ghosts that may linger in the mortal world after death. I do try to keep a low profile with my powers, but lately, I’ve had to be a bit assertive to deal with some deadly threats. Having those all-out battles with other gods can get exhaustive though. Good thing we always have a nice supply of rum.



    Here be a picture of meself in both forms.

    Are ye shaking in ye boots yet?




    I am Fire. Mate to the warrior Hellion. Mistress of the Tiger Clan. One year ago I was called to this arena and emerged victoriously. In times of calm and peace, I am governed by the Goddess Bastet. When provoked, we return to the sands of time and call upon the power of our protector Sekhmet.

    My husband has taught me the use of the physical, sword, bow, polearm…and I use them all equally. But my greatest weapon is the control of fire. I have trained since it first manifested in me when I was just twelve summers into my life. I can hurl a small fireball or blanket a small area in a fire. I can lift it from the ground and form a wall between myself and my attacker.

    When the end has come I will admit defeat graciously or stand in honor of those I have defeated.



    Vespias and Kasi

    My name is Vespias Firstlight, General of the Sarnian Rangers. With me is my friend Kasi. My father brought him to me when we were both children. He has been by my side through my darkest times.

    He was there when the Black Prince entered my homelands, bent of killing all of us for the sake of the Stones of Life. He was there when my future husband was killed by the undead mobs the Prince sent to attack us.

    He was there when my greatest friend and mentor was captured and killed by the Prince. He watched as my brother died in the final battle for our home. When my Grandparents died. When more than seventy percent of my kind died.

    He saw my heart grow dark and withered. He heard the ghosts in my head speaking and he saw where they led me. A dark path of debauchery and abuse that almost killed me. He was there through it all, never once turning away from me. He still remains by my side. One who stands in front of me is of little consequence because the great Kasi stands behind me.

    I am almost never off target when there is a bow in my hands. Kasi insures that my bow is always there or close enough to get it. My armor is light mail and leather. My weapons include my bow, my curved short-sword and several daggers. My greatest weapon is my Kasi, unafraid and loyal to a fault. For those who wish to test me, be very aware that our contest is unbalanced and you will lose.



    Malice looks over each of her fellow competitors intently trying to assess what kind of threat theyd be. It looked like the females on the other hand had an advantage in the abilities department. She looked at the dragon curiously before bowing to it.

    “Yeah that Dragon might be a problem.” she muses before moves on.

    She notices the catwoman with the air of ancient Egypt about her.

    “Bastet’s blessings upon you sister. May your eyes be keen and your teeth be sharp.” Mal says as she bows slightly to her, with her eyes on the lionesses.

    As she walks she looks at Layla, the woman looks far too gentle to be part of this bloodsport.

    Then finally at the young woman with the lion..She could almost be one of her sister Valkyries with her blonde hair and light eyes.

    “Your felines magnificent,” says to Vespias, then louder to the rest.

    “Which one of you is Jimbone?”


    Robert E Cano II

    I am Bene. Not human, nor can I die, but a wraith now, my soul no longer tied to my mortal shell.

    I am still learning my powers, but I can fashion any weapon from the shadows that now create and recreate my form at my will. I am immortal, but live by a code of morality which forces me to often abandon thoughts of killing. On top of this, I have the ability to wield the power of lightning, able to channel this power through my shadows. Every weapon, including arrows, can be laden with this power, adding to my arsenal.

    However, this does not mean I won’t kill. My shadows are strengthened by my sorrows. And should I refuse to feed on the life force of living creatures or from the life-magic of the land itself, I will suffer intense physical agony capable of crippling me, or forcing me to feed off the first or nearest living being near me. Yet, I cannot die. The more energy I expend, the quicker my hunger will return, the more danger those I love will be in.

    Should I feed, I will carry the weight of their suffering within my body and mind for the rest of eternity. My only prayer is to find a much deserving death…somehow.



    Woah ho, some fearsome competition coming into this battle.  I can’t wait to see who the readers g for.


    I just thought I’d set us off with a nice little tune from AC/DC:  Highway to Hell.  See you there, peeps


    Hey, everyone,

    Blodwyn Biggar here. Having faced powerful demons and witches before, I thing I can handle you people. I can’t die, but your reputation can. This is going to be so much fun.

    Just a little bit about me:

    I’m a necromancer and live with my cat Diana in a house in Llangryn, a little town on Anglesey. The house is lovely, but sometimes I wish, I wouldn’t have to live there alone, but my parents won’t be coming back from the dead any time soon. I certainly won’t raise them. As you can see, I’m a tall woman, almost as tall as my friend Mina and definitely taller than Llywelyn, the guy from Llangryn’s book club.

    Not everything in Llangryn is as lovely as the place looks, but I love it here and I’m good at what I do. You should see what the necromancy is doing for my garden. It’s gorgeous, gorgeous I tell you. Don’t tell Siriol I’m using magic on my flowers though. The bitch isn’t too keen on my necromancy.

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