The Fox's Honor

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The Second Novel in the Series:

The Chronicles of the Dragon and the Fox

The Fox's Honor

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The Fox's Honor

will be Available Fall 2008






ISBN: 1602901074
ISBN-13: 9781602901070
Format: Paperback, 296pp
Publisher: OakTara
Pub. Date: October 2008

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Devon Rathenberg the Prince who Defeated Death
  Prince Devon Rathenberg

The Fox is Devon Rathenberg.  He is the head of the Emperor's Intelligence forces.  Devon Rathenberg is a man who likes to accomplish his ends under cover and in private.  He is somewhat retiring and unwilling to take his place in society.  He never allows his emotions to cloud his judgment.  Devon is a man of reason and careful decision-making, and his is willing to die for the Empire.  His only real fault is that he fell in love with Tamar Falkeep...  Devon is willing to let his friend, The Dragon, John-Mark take the credit for everything.  That is about to change...

Lady Tamar Falkeep

Tamar Falkeep is beautiful and innocent looking.  She is blond and willowy.  She is also the most dangerous political manipulator in the galaxy.  Luckily for the royalty of the Human Galactic Empire, as the third daughter of the least powerful Duchy, she will not rule and she will have little scope for her power.  Unfortunately for the royalty, Prince Devon Rathenberg has fallen in love with her.

The vehicle for Devon Rathenberg's change will be the Lady Tamar Falkeep.  Devon Rathenberg unwisely falls in love with the most dangerous and potentially powerful woman in the galaxy.  Many realize her potential, few understand what that means.  These small details may result in saving an entire society and civilization.


Tanna Borrell is the artist who designed and drew the dragon and fox symbols that represent the Chronicles of the Dragon and the Fox.  These were also used as the dingbats in the text.  I hope she has time in the future to make drawings for the Ghost Ship Chronicles.

Sigil by Tanna Borrell

In actuality, she designed the dragon sigil for the Ghost Ship Chronicles.  She took the design from the Imperial symbol on the Athelstan Cying.  I hope she will continue to produce more of her great work.

New illustrations are coming to The Fox's Honor and A Season of Honor.  I was too late to get them into The End of Honor.  My readers told me that some diagrams would be helpful.  I will put these on the secrets page so you can see them prior to their publication. 


You might conclude that pure science fiction requires no research--this is an absolutely wrong idea.  Good science fiction requires a basis of the real world with a projection of authentic science overlaying it.  If the world does not match the proper sense of the reader, the story is ruined.  If the science is not convincing and logical, the unique feel of the future is gone--the novelty of the science part of the fiction has been lost.  For me, writing science fiction is like developing a new idea in engineering.  I can see it in my mind, and I try to describe both its effects and its design.  The research is through constant immersion in engineering and in fiction.  This way, the imagined worlds are real and the science comes alive. 

The world of the Dragon and the Fox is a projection based on the idea that genetic manipulation was required for humankind to conquer the worlds they discovered when they traveled into space.  The genetic manipulation was used to create great doctors, technicians, scientists, and leaders.  Eventually the society became moribund and turned into something akin to feudalism--the Human Galactic Empire.  Against this backdrop, the Dragon and the Fox fight for honor while their world and civilization is falling around them.

The technology of the Dragon and the Fox is also a projection.  All of the concepts described are potential technological solutions.  The big idea isn't the technology or the changes to the human species.  The big concept is how little technology and human changes have really affected the fabric of human interaction.  The one specific change that is very evident in the world of the Dragon and the Fox is the differentiation between men and women.  This change in human culture historically reverses itself based on the organization of society and the identification of the differences between men and women.  The world of the Dragon and the Fox highlights this differentiation based on the feudal and genetic leadership base of their society.  I don't advocate these roles or this type of society--the ideas come out of the question that brought about the world of the Dragon and the Fox.

The Question: 

The Fox's Honor asks a unique question:  if a man of honor is required to die for what he believes; what happens if he is given back his life?  The ramifications of this question move forward and backward in the context of the story and in our imaginations.  At the fore, are the actions of this man of honor in preparation for his death, the remorse of those who must send him there, and the delight of his enemies at seeing his degradation.  At the time of his death, we see his own doubt and regret,  the pain of those who love him, and the certainty of those who kill him.  In his renewed life, the man of honor must be revenged, must respond to the circumstances his apparent death have caused, and must live up to the unfulfilled promises he made.  This man of honor is Prince Devon Rathenberg and his deliverer is the Lady Tamar Falkeep.

The Characters: 

As in all my books, the characters grow out of "the question."  Devon Rathenberg is a hero of the Human Galactic Empire.  He is the Emperor's Fox---the head of Imperial Intelligence.  He is both heroic and honorable, but he is foolish enough to fall in love with Lady Tamar Falkeep.  Tamar Falkeep is a woman disconnected by position to her full potential in the Empire.  Devon's death is incomprehensible to her and she will not allow it. 

The Theme: 

It would be easy to say the theme of The Fox's Honor is honor, and so it is.  The type of honor here, is much different that that explored in The End of Honor and A Season of Honor.  Devon Rathenberg must compromise the perceived honor of his family, his own honor, and the honor of the House Imperial to protect and defend the debt his death and new life invoked.  Tamar Falkeep must let her own honor appear besmirched to protect her new House and obligations.  Decisions made in the face of "the question" above, in this novel drive the theme of honor.  


If you were given a new lease on life, how willing would you be to give it up again for all you loved and held dear?  Would you too display the Fox's honor?

Original Cover Concepts




  Novels by this Author
       The Second Mission (Available now)
       Centurion   (Available now published by OakTara)
       Aegypt            (Available now published by OakTara)


The Dragon and the Fox


                     (Available now published by OakTara)



The End of Honor       The Fox’s Honor        A Season of Honor 




  L.D. Alford is the author of 41 technical papers published in international journals on flight test, military policy, flight safety, space, and cyberwar.  Technical Writing
  L.D. Alford has been a professional aviator for over 30 years.  Aviation Writing

L.D. Alford Aviation Writing Technical Writing Unpublished Novels Writing Links Engineer


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