This is the third collection of Elliot Kay’s short stories set in three of his fictional universes: Good Intentions, Wandering Monsters, and Poor Man’s Fight. I really admire Kay’s commitment to continue to produce short stories instead of just novels. It’s a nice way to flesh out his various universes and after reading them I always have the urge to go back and read the series that produced them.
The best story in the Good Intentions portion of the collection was Trust, in which the succubus, Lorelei, has her car stolen and goes after the thieves. Lorelei is a reformed demon, trying to fight on the side of the angels. Most of the angels, however, understandably distrust her and many are quite upset about a demon going after their mortal charges. However, Lorelei has her own angel on her side and as long as she doesn’t use her supernatural abilities, the rules allow her to regain her property. It’s a good story with moral implications, something that Kay does very well.
The Wandering Monsters stories are brains over brawn affairs. There is a lot of action, but one of the things that makes Kay’s monster heroes effective is that they think their problems through and often try to resolve them with a minimum of bloodshed. These stories also show the consequences of closing the pass to the human kingdom that occurred at the end of the second book. Everyone expects the king to return eventually to reassert his despotism over the area. In the meantime, there is a lot of chaos.