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In his prime, Raleigh had snared the vicious fighter Moshe into marriage through a mutual game of push and pull. Ten years later, Raleigh suffers from a chronic knee injury and flagging confidence, while his bond with Moshe has eroded drastically.
During yet another domestic squabble, Raleigh learns that Moshe intends to leave their home to take part in a winter sword fighting tournament. Roused by a mix of broken pride and desperation, Raleigh chooses to attend as well—in what he believes is the last chance to win back Moshe’s devotion.
Much as I love reading about those first meetings, those falling in love moments, once in awhile I also love to read about “after-the-end”. Stories that deal with established couples that experience issues and how they reconnect and find their way back into love. So when I read the blurb for this one, I was intrigued.
It was quite a good short story — I did get the idea of what kind of problem this couple was experiencing. Once when Lord Raleigh was the winner of sword fights and battles, he was able to snare vicious fighter Moshe into marriage. However, after a chronic knee injury left his confidence in the dust, Raleigh felt that he was no longer the man whom Moshe married to ten years ago. But he couldn’t communicate this with his husband because of his pride — Raleigh felt that Moshe married him because Raleigh was able to control Moshe but now he was just half of the man he used to be.
I thought R.D. Hero wrote the marriage problem well. Being married for 10-years to someone doesn’t mean that you always know how to handle things when something hits your pride — especially followed by shutting down your spouse from communicating. Raleigh thought that he would no longer be appealing to Moshe, once the reason for Moshe being married him was gone. He thought that by joining the sword fighting tournament again, despite his knee injury, he would be back to that victorious man. He didn’t realize that Moshe would adjust with the situation, if only Raleigh let him in. I did feel Raleigh’s pain and insecurities, though I also would have liked to knock him in the head for pushing Moshe away with his own action.
It would be lovelier if I could get more of Raleigh’s history on how he managed to win Moshe’s heart — the little clues in here, coming from Raleigh’s musings were intriguing. I thought it would involve a lot of good banter and sword fights. But all in all, I quite enjoyed this.
Title: The Rusted Sword
Author: R.D. Hero
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Release Date: August 27, 2014
Purchase Links: Less Than Three Press