I'm looking for a short story that appeared in an anthology of either fantasy or science fiction stories.

  • I believe the story is called "The Day is Saved"
  • Personal Honor was an important aspect of the story
  • There was a rivalry between the dragon riders and the army (navy?)
  • The army/navy was equipped with cannon-firing airships
  • I believe the dragons were more of a royal-guard/jedi type then a standing military unit
  • I recall some monarch-type elements that kept the dragons in play even over the airships 'superior military advantage'
  • The battle was fought more than once (perhaps more than twice) with the military losing the first time
  • They were besieging some sort of castle-like fortified structure
  • I believe they were fighting in the mountains
  • The airships were a relatively new invention in the story
  • I think the airships were held aloft by magic
  • The castle was also held together by magic, it was being actively 'repaired' by wizards renewing the magic
  • Magic is spelled unusually with both a C and a K (magicks) in this story.
  • Crafters are used to create and reverse-engineer magic
  • Airships are lost if they travel to far down to the "Bottom" (capitalization from the story)
  • The initial battle, led by the military, was lost due to an ambush
  • Only the attacking faction (which had the dragons) had airships, the other side did not.

Handful of Character Names: Jeantrou, Hastind, General Dennis

Unfortunately I read the story in a used book store, so the book is also likely to be on the older side.

  • @Raj I cannot conclusively say that the story I read was NOT part of a larger series. I vaguely remember looking up the author at the time and not finding anything else (and being disappointed enough to remember this), but I may have made any number of mistakes that mean this could be part of a series. I am not 100% on the title either.
    – Mark
    Jun 17, 2019 at 20:49
  • @user14111 I read it about two years ago, but it was in a book in a used book store, and I have no idea what the history of the book is.
    – Mark
    Jun 17, 2019 at 21:15

1 Answer 1


This looks like it may be Privateer by Margaret Weis and Robert Krammes. A Google book search shows a "General Dennis," a "Captain Jeantrou" and a "Lord Captain William Hastind."

The cover shows dragons and a flying sailing ship with cannon.

Cover of Privateer

The Google books description mentions a "dangerous mission to the dark world of the Bottom Dwellers."

  • I am not sure if this is the STORY that I read, but this looks like what I am looking for. Let me do some digging!
    – Mark
    Jun 17, 2019 at 21:14
  • If you look at the "Short Fiction" section of Margaret Weis' ISFDb page you'll see a number of titles marked "(excerpt)." One of those might be an excerpt of this novel; without tracking them all down it's hard to tell. But they will each list where they were published, and you might recognize a cover.
    – DavidW
    Jun 17, 2019 at 21:20
  • I'm accepting this as the answer. This book actually contains what I believe is a synopsis of the actual story (You can read it here: bit.ly/2KXJrUK). I had no idea there were more books written in the same world! Super excited now, excellent find.
    – Mark
    Jun 17, 2019 at 21:29
  • Here's the actual book, found in her short stories collection as you suggested @DavidW isfdb.org/cgi-bin/pl.cgi?274024
    – Mark
    Jun 17, 2019 at 21:35

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