“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” – Arthur C Clarke

“People are the worst. They ruin every planet they’re in charge of.” – Matt Holland

Imagine you found out magic was real. I don’t mean like the London radio station, or the Orlando basketball team, or the kind that lives in a young girl’s heart (ooooh). I mean actual bona fide fire from nothing, lead into gold magic.

If you can harness it right, study it properly, you can do almost anything you can imagine.

What would you do with it?

Two hundred years before the events of Hair of the Dog, scientists on Gallaetha unlocked the secret to actual magic. I think they called it ‘magic’ because they didn’t quite understand how it worked at first, and over time the name just stuck. They put this power to work, conjuring enhanced magical versions of wood, stone, and steel from thin air; powering their cities with magically generated electricity; using magically enhanced soil and crop-modifying spells to grow food anywhere.

They solved hunger, disease, and the energy crisis entirely in a matter of months.

They could’ve had a utopia right then. But people are dicks no matter where you go. Actually, most people are alright, it’s the ones in power that you’ve got to watch out for. Nobody gets into a position of authority and power without stomping all over someone else.

All three major super-powers on Gallaetha were run by such dickheads, and they each wanted to use magic in their own way. Issolar wanted to turn it into a weapon, Levinia wanted to turn it into a commodity, and Nymia didn’t think human beings should have this kind of power and wanted to ban it completely.

It wasn’t long before all three nation-states were at war with one another. This was the big one, the great war. Millions of people died, millions more were injured. And with Panacea, the magically enhanced medicine that could cure any ailment, even injured soldiers were up and fighting again in a matter of days whether they were psychologically ready to or not.

Eventually, an Issolarian/Levinian alliance forced Nymia to surrender and the war ended. All three empires took their time to rebuild and recover, with the hope of better days to come.

That should’ve been the end of it all. The whole world was in reach of yet another utopia. But Issolarians, or at least the people in charge, are a paranoid bunch. They still saw enemies everywhere. And the Levinian government saw an opportunity for profit and decided to supply the Issolarians demand.

The Issolarian military ballooned out of all control and the United Provinces of Levinia set up thousands of disparate mercenary groups, some offering support, others offering them something for the Issolarian military to point their guns and spells at.

Aside from that, all that magic has started changing people into something else. These Magically Corrupted Organisms (or MCO’s) are lurking almost everywhere on Gallaetha, despite what the Issolarian government will tell you. Every MCO is different, from the cannibalistic verdulaks to the reclusive and territorial lrocks, but each one shares a profound hatred of humanity.

All this conflict and war, and if any of it stopped then the economy would flatline.

Or at least that’s what they’d have you believe, anyway.

The first book, Hair of the Dog, takes place twenty-five years after the war has ended. It follows some of the people struggling to make a living out in the post-war chaos. Amongst them is Layla, a thrill-seeking mercenary who wants to use her skills to make the world a better place. Dominic, a disgraced Issolarian military sergeant traumitised by his best friend’s death. Brent, a powerful and ruthless magic practitioner dying of a new incurable disease. And Narak, a two-hundred year old MCO searching the world for a child he had before the war, a child that might not have existed in the first place.

If any of this sounds even remotely interesting to you then you’ll definitely enjoy Hair of the Dog, the first Gallaetha story. You can get all three parts on Amazon for a fraction of what you’d spend on a decade spanning war.

Part One
Part Two
Part Three