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For some, loss merely deprives. For others, it consumes. Ashtadukht is a star-reckoner. The worst there's ever been. Witness her treacherous journey through Iranian legends and ancient history. Only a brave few storytellers still relate cautionary glimpses into the life of Ashtadukht, a woman who commanded the might of the constellations—if only just, and often unpredictably. They’ll stir the imagination with tales of her path to retribution. How, fraught with bereavement and a dogged illness, she criss-crossed Sassanian Iran in pursuit of creatures now believed mythical. Then, in hushed tones, what she wrought on that path. ------ The events of A Star-Reckoner's Lot unfold in a fictional setting heavily inspired by 6th-century Iran. At the time, the Sassanian Empire stretched from the Euphrates in the West to Central Asia in the East. Through a combination of strength of arms and tolerance, Sassanian Iran brought swathes of land into its fold. There, by harnessing cultures and ideas from both within and without, the empire nurtured the arts and sciences. It glowed with an appreciation for court, religion, king, and nature—often finding unity in depictions of the Royal Hunt. Many of the well-travelled tales of One Thousand and One Nights first graced the lips of storytellers in Sassanian Iran's thriving and magical folktales. The empire's military conquests scored heavy blows on many fronts: from the Eastern Roman Empire to the Caucasus, from Arabia to Sogdiana, its armies commanded respect. A mighty yet often unsung player in ancient history, Sassanian Iran commanded an indelible place both in contemporary times, and in the world we live in today.

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