If you’ve read THIS and THIS, then you know why I’ve been reviewing a small series of short stories published by Baen Books.
Today, I review the third and last tale in the 2021 freebie I downloaded called Misfits authored by A.C. Haskins. He doesn’t seem to have a blog or website, but according to his Amazon Author’s page:
A.C. Haskins is a former Armored Cavalry Officer and combat veteran, turned economist and business strategist (and occasional firearm instructor). He has a lifelong love of speculative fiction, having written his first science fiction novel as a class project in the eleventh grade. His interests include (but are not limited to) ancient and medieval history, mythology, applied violence studies, tabletop gaming, and theoretical economics. He lives in Michigan with his wife, two cats, and a dog.
You can find what books he’s contributed to by clicking the link above.
Misfits is an urban legend chronicling a group of legendary creatures including a dwarf, a giant, a merman, and La Patasola, who, for one misdeed or another, have all been banished from the mystic realm to our world.
Naturally they turn to crime to support themselves, specifically drug dealing.
All goes well (aside from the giant complaining about not being able to eat human flesh) as long as they stay off the radar of a drunken but otherwise highly accomplished wizard who apparently polices them. That is until there’s a change in the criminal power structure in their community.
Then they have to risk exposing themselves (as well as death) in order to convince the rival gang that they really should be allowed to control the drug trade in their city.
It’s a short and simply constructed piece, but of the three stories presented in this wee anthology, I liked it the best. That’s saying something since the main characters deal coke (no, not the Coca-Cola kind) and when pushed, can turn a small group of competitors into a multi-course meal lasting weeks.
While I suspect that the characters and their backstory are shared elsewhere, Misfits does very well as a standalone tale. If you like urban fantasies, I’d recommend this one.