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Doore’s Despair is a series of five short stories which are intended to be read in designed order rather than chronologically. The tales are in order:
Jacob Taverner is a victim of another man’s sins. The 14th century tavern keeper meets horrifying torment with the ending of each day. He is not alone. Surrounded by a town full of lost, tortured souls, he is forced to existing day by day without touch, comfort or even a kind word from any save the man who doomed him forever.
Once an arrogant missionary to the Far East, Isaac Doore committed a mortal sin with pristine intentions. Intent to save heathen souls, he destroyed an object of their mysticism. Haunted by the consequences and with Death a constant, unwelcome companion, Doore fled along the Silk Road through the declining Constantinople, leaving a back trail littered with the dead.
Doore struggles to outrun punishment and discover a way to deliver the souls he’s condemned to restless torment. He embarks upon a cog bound for Messina, but wind and water aren’t enough to shield him from his fate. With the crews’ souls in his hands, only Doore may arrive at their destination.
Isaac Doore has lived through countless plagues. Ever dogged by Death and the spirits of those he’s failed in the past, Doore has come to accept both his role as plague harbinger and his failure to lead those in his charge to their final rest. What he was not prepared to accept was love. Driven by desperation to save Miss Angela Proctor, he abuses his position as reverend to drive her from Topsfield Massachusetts before the inevitable plague arrives.
His failure is soon all but absolute. A new mystery besets Doore. He still cannot find the path to lead the dead to their final reward, and now he cannot find the spirit of Angela Proctor.