Search

Darkly Dreaming Demographic.

Where weird shit hits bizarre fans.

Category

Prose

The Butcher of Barclay’s Hollow by Nick R B Tingley – A review

Well written but underwhelming.

I first chapter just didn’t really grab me. I moan about this constantly on inkitt. People just plonk a first chapter down and then move on to the next one, but the first chapter is really the most important. It’s like a summary of everything to follow. It has to be linked to the overall plot somehow and it’s the first step into this greater world, so stuff, a significant amount of stuff needs to happen or if it’s even very little it has to be pretty powerful. I mean what really happens in the first chapter? A butcher saves a little girl from being maimed and then gets criticized by passers-by. And although I expect their distaste for him to be a theme I doubt it ties to the main plot at all. So really this incident is irrelevant as a starting point.
I get you probably want to ease into it and I usually like pieces like this and reading this encouraged me to get out my copy of Hound of the Baskervilles. And even in that, a flowery period piece published over a hundred years ago the first chapter gets to the point. They’re not talking about the Hound but they’re talking around it, building up to it. but it’s clear that its building to something and then the next chapter is called ‘The curse of the Baskervilles’. We have none of that here, it’s just one scene with no foreshadowing or hints of an overarching plot at all.
I think this entire chapter could have served better as just a flashback or a story relayed by the girl at a later date and you could have started further on in the story to start at a more relevant point. Giving the main character a little more mystery. You hinted vaguely at a tragedy backstory, so I expect he had a wife and child that died and thus builds a connection with the little girl over the course of the book. As it stands now it’s sort of throw away.
It’s well written, I like the period style although there are some typos and errors. It needs a good proof read because these obviously slipped through spellcheck. I have to say I cringed at some of it because it just seems like it’s trying too hard to be period even in the non-diegetic stuff and it’s kind of unnecessary when it could be done better. When I read a modern period piece I expect to be hit in the face with the research involved rather than just flowery language and period accents. I want to be shown more than I’m told. It was easier for Conan-Doyle because he was obviously immersed in it. But it’s not really an excuse, what in this story really justifies a period setting? You could take that entire chapter and just change the carriage to a car and it would be no different.
Overall, it’s very serviceable if a little cliché, I save my harshest criticism for the work I think has potential. I like the title, I like the premise, the style is good but frankly your first chapter is boring. The skill is there but the hook is not.
I hoped this helped, I wish you the best of luck with it.

The Butcher of Barclay’s Hollow

LCYE Chapter 7 ‘Sinnerman’

Hello hello, back again with another chapter of this trippy dippy attempt at a psychological thriller. I think its shaping up nicely. By that I mean spiralling out of control into a complete surreal David Lynch parody clusterfuck but atleast I’m having fun. It’s something to do. And since I’ve sort of run out of things to rant about and there doesn’t seem to be anything interesting going on that isn’t american presidential election related so I’ll just keep writing and throwing that at you. Not like you want to hear my unfetted opinion anyway, I’m pretty much talking to myself.

This blog has sort of become just an insane time captual of my gradual decline, like some stardate log on a doomed space vessel heading to the sun and possible alien rape.

It could be worse right, I could be the person taxed with keeping whatever Hillary Clinton is alive and fed with bugs and mice.

That being said… is a phrase that’s over used these days I noticed, that being said here is the chapter in question. Sinnerman named after the song of the same name, we get a little window into the psychology of the killer but not really. It’s a fun if cliche’d autopsy exposition scene. Done a million times in almost every crime show/movie but it never gets old. Hopefully I kept it fresh, if not, oh well.

As always you can read the full chapter and all subsequent chapters on my inkitt page for the one time offer of zero shekels down do not pass go do not collect three hundred rare Pepes #notallpepes.

Sinnerman

~

Con paced back and forth in his expensive suit at the side of the road. He shook his head as he hung it. Casting a weary glance at the big open plot of grassland at the side of the road.
He stumbled up onto the uneven grassy embankment to look out at the horizon. It was mid-morning and hot. The sun was pregnant in the sky, squatting on the California mountain range. He took a deep breath as and shook his head again. So much emptiness. There was only small wire fence running along the side of the road accompanied by the telephone poles running parallel. A large grain silo in the distance. He was surprised anyone lived here in all this emptiness. All that light brown grass all that fresh air, he stole away one wild west fantasy and let it go again.

After another few minutes of stamping his feet and licking his lips he walked across the street to the black Lincoln.

Harri was sitting on the hot hood with her sunglasses on, a pair of cheap truck stop aviators. Her arms folded as she put all her weight on her heels and her sensible half heeled shoes.

“Feelin’ better?” She called out.

“Sorry, just getting car sick.” He flashed her a winning smile on that handsome face and then dropped it again. “You ready?”.

“Sure” She gave her own conservative smile and peeled herself off the car.

Con walked bow legged towards the large flat building behind the parked Lincoln. Harri followed smiling and shaking her head.

The Riverside county coroner’s office was a large rectangular building. It was fairly modern looking in some respects, old in others. It was tan stucco all the way around sitting atop a large glass front that wrapped around the whole building making it look like an uneven wedding cake. The windows all looked black from the glare. Riverside County Sheriff’s Coroner embossed in big silver letters on the side of the building.

The surrounding greenery was well kept to a point. The grass had dry desert bald patches but that was to be expected. A few clusters of cypress trees were dotted around. Maybe to give the impression that this wasn’t the middle of nowhere and civilisation would greet you a few miles in either direction. Either side a great distance apart was a post office and what looked like a stationery store.

The entrance was another big rectangular box which jutted out in an awkward L shape. There was a strange red outcropping over the door. It looked like a red piece of prepacked cheese slice hanging from a sandwich at a jaunty angle. The whole building gave off an aura of flat-pack furniture.

Con waited for Harri at the door turning to shield his eyes and scrunch his face up, he looked pale and a little sickly. Harri brushed past him as she broke the seal on the door which made a sucking hissing sound that gave way to a cool blast of air conditioning. Thus completing the illusion of a walk in freezer.

Inside it was modern and simple. There was a small waiting area with a wooden table and matching furniture. A flustered middle age woman with an eighties haircut and blue blazer sat at a small light wood reception desk. A phone pressed tightly to her ear.

Harri did her usual bit as she liked to do. She strode up to the reception desk and flashed her laminate.

“FBI, you’re expecting us”

The flustered woman had no time to think and just nodded furiously and blurted out “Err room 3b, end of the hall”.

Harri smiled politely and quickstepped down the hall followed by a queasy looking Con squinting at the halogen lights.

It smelled like a hospital, but the smell of cleaning products was much stronger. As if the walls were soaked in it or there was bleach in the sprinkler system.

Harri marched down the narrow hallway, she could feel it getting colder. She knew that had to be a step in the right direction. The floors in the lobby were that locking wood flooring, now it was all clean squeaky linoleum like a hospital. The walls were all white with a few tasteful paintings and bulletins dotted about. Con plodded on behind her as she stalked the halls looking for 3b. She found it, it was a large stainless steel sliding door with a little porthole window at the side. She looked inside through the foggy window. She could see mounds of bodies wrapped up in see through plastic. They all looked like props in a scary movie lying on stainless steel shelves with raised lips.

“Oh you’re here” A shy perky voice behind her croaked out.

A small fat man in a lab coat peaked out from an office door on the other side of the hall. There was more of that pale wood lining the windows in the office and the writing surfaces. All the work surfaces were stainless steel.

“FBI right?” The small man said.

“Uh huh, Special agent Harriet Jaguer and this is my partner, Special Agent Con Folsome.” Con shambled along just as she introduced him. He looked a little better, the cold seemed to straighten out some of the wrinkles on his suit and his face. He was just in time for a vigorous handshake from a pair of very sweaty and inextricably hairy hands.

“Gary Dole, it’s good to meet you folks, don’t get many of you men in black fellas out here”.

The little man was bald and had the greying stubble of a plumber all over his face. A set of wire framed reading glasses resting atop his head. His face looked like someone had taken silly putty and put it on a boiled egg and frozen it. Squishy looking features that were left to set hard. A stubby nose and tight rounded lips on a small alert face.

Sinnerman

 

 

LCYE Chapter 6 ‘Call from the past’

Ok back again with some weird shit. Yeah it started pretty stable and but now we’re getting into the silent hill max payne elements and it’s all down hill from here folks. Trippy shit. I tried to reign it in a little and for the most part faught my natural inclinations to go down the rabbit hole and I think it happens rather gradually and hopefull comes off as chilling as I fantacize it to be.
Well let me know what you think as always, busy, busy, busy being busy. Still writing this stuff, hopefully I’ll get it squared away before nano.

As always find the full chapter on inkitt for no monies.

Call From the Past

Aurevoir

~
A phone was ringing somewhere. A distinctive chirping analogue phone.

It seemed to swing in and out on a bedside table in a room he couldn’t piece together in his mind. All the parts were scattered.

He took a sharp intake of breath, a sudden feeling of falling catching him. His head bobbed. His hands tightened on the faux leather steering wheel. He was driving, how long had he been driving? Where was he going? Where was he? Who was he?

He rolled down his window and let the wind batter his cheeks as he craned his neck trying to stop his eyes spinning in his head long enough to read a road sign.

He looked in his rear-view mirror and saw a sign for Poplar avenue.

He was driving in the slow lane of a highway sectioned off in the middle by a line of cypress trees. Driving past a motel with large bulbous palm trees collected almost like a bunch of flowers in the parking lot.

It didn’t really tell him much; he wasn’t familiar with the area.

He wound the window up as the air started to sting his cheeks. He turned the rear-view mirror down quickly and looked at his face. There were light scratches already fading on his cheeks. James turned the mirror up again and didn’t give it much thought.

He passed a small one story building, yellow brick with red trim. Only the words ‘CHEAP CIGARETTES’ embossed on the side. There was a McDonalds that looked like a texmex restaurant on his right and a gas station. He checked his dash, he didn’t need gas.

His reactions were slow, even moving his head was a grand gesture a colossal effort. He didn’t see the car in front slow down for the light. He slammed right into the back of a Honda civic. His face hit the steering wheel hard.

He could see the coffee cup, but he didn’t try to stop it. It was white and made of stained porcelain, it said ‘CHINA’ on the bottom. It hit a deco floor of black and white tiles, shattering and spreading a brown gritty liquid on the floor, that could only be coffee. He straightened and took in another sobering breath bracing his neck. Pain worked its way through his body, like a hurdler jumping all the vertebrae in his spine.

A waitress galloped over with a fresh pot of coffee as if that could put humpty dumpty back together again. She was small and girlish and had mousey brown hair, a pale pretty face with delicate features. Wearing a green plaid skirt and apron as some kind of uniform with a white blouse. Her name tag read; ‘Becky’.

“Are you alright? What happened to you?” She said, a genuine tone of concern in her voice.

“What?” James said.

“Your eye is bleeding” She pointed to her eye and held herself delicately.

James padded his eye with his hand until it came up wet. “Oh yeah, I think I was in a car accident”

“Oh my god, I’ll take care of this, we have a bathroom in the back you can get cleaned up.”

The sound of running water.

James opened his eyes, there was someone in front of him, through the steam, he wiped the glass. It was a man, a man with brown hair, he had a cut over his eye, light scratches on his face. There was blood. It took him a moment to realise it was his own face. It felt alien to him, was he wearing a new face or was it always like this?

The poet Pool, in his poem “Somebody’s been wearing my face again” wrote: ‘In this hall of mirrors/Built by liars, I am a pale reflection of myself.’

The water was running hot, he dipped his hands in it and slowly padded his face.

It stung but he kept at it.

After a few minutes it was clean and he felt a warming sensation under his collar. The steam cleared and he took another look at himself. He was still wearing his work clothes, a jacket he’d never seen before. It was maybe one size too big sitting on his shoulders making him look like a tailor’s dummy. It was a leather bikers jacket with a yellow stripe running up the arms.

He patted the pockets, they were empty. He opened it and put his hand inside the inside breast pocket and came out with a peculiar matchbox which had the same pattern as the floor. A hatched black and white, with a strange symbol that may have been a bird of some kind. Embossed in black it read “Twin Pines lodge” With an address ‘West capitol avenue, Sacramento’.

Puzzled he turned it over, it was blank but someone had drawn a set of lips on the back with red lipstick. As if it was a kiss.

 

Green Sunday Chapter 10 ‘Romeo is bleeding’ (Edited)

Good morrow fine humans!

Back again just letting my asshole heal from the reeming of my day job. It’s been a crazy few days making dat paper. But without it I wouldn’t be able to pay for this fine editing or food.

But here we are with Chapter ten, should be on the way out soon so I can start something else.
I was thinking of completely throwing out my plan from nanwrimo and doing something else entirely but more thought is required on that, I’ll keep you posted.

Follow the hyperlink to read the rest of the chapter for free.

Peace!

Romeo is Bleeding

~

“There he is!” Dave said as he pointed over his Sikh billionaire boss’s shoulder.

“You littal caant!” Pete said as he cranked the pressure gauge in his custom air arrow launcher. He narrowed his eyes to keep track of a wily moving target.

The scope flitted around, trying to keep track of the ragged green form as it darted from cover to cover. “Keep still you little barstard!” Pete spat. “Think you can outrun me, you little facka?”

“He’s over there!” Dave screeched as he leant on the raised lip of the gun store roof.

Pete tried to steady his breathing; he tunnelled his vision down the scope of the rifle. A quick flicker of light and a sharp piercing feeling. Pete was sent reeling off his makeshift perch on the roof.

“What was that?” Dave said.

Pete patted himself down for injuries “Something came right at me.” He readied himself again at his perch.

“There!” Dave screamed. A lithe figure slipped through a gap in the wall of milling living corpses.

“You fuckin’ what?’” Pete said as he gritted his teeth, pulling hard on the trigger of the arrow launcher. With a satisfying release of pressure, an arrow soared into the crowd, just as the figure disappeared.

“Did you get ‘im?” Dave said.

“I dunno,” Pete said as he lifted the rifle up and rested it against the wall.

“Who the fuck was that?” Dave said, feeling a little buzzed and drained from the excitement. As if, for a fleeting moment, the shoe was on the other foot, he glanced back to the spot where he’d last seen the cornered animal through his binoculars. He had to catch his breath despite not having moved an inch. “Hah, does that one kinda look like Burt Reynolds to you?” he said as he looked out over the shambling corpses on the other side of the street.

“Another caant like us, I reckon. Didn’t get a good look at ‘im,” Pete said as he leant against the lip of the roof. He took out a hunting pipe and filled it with tobacco, lit it and took some measured pulls on the horn lip piece, with a faraway look on his face. He listened to the sound of his own heartbeat. As he put pressure on the wall, the other side cracked a little and pieces of mortar and brick crumbled.

Unnoticed by Dave and Pete, lodged a good four or five inches into the mortar was a shiny and very sharp-looking butterfly knife.

~

A sickly light trickled through the gaps in the shutters of an upmarket house on the more affluent side of town. The house was still and looked vacant in the bluing light of the evening. The night was on its way, bringing a much needed stillness to the busy town. The house was old-looking, reminiscent of some older New England town houses: a two storey affair, made of retouched white wood and roofed with grey tiles. The windows were partitioned with the same white wood. All the curtains and shutters were drawn.

Inside the house a deathly cold gripped the anterooms and the hall. A musty smell the owners must have gotten used to permeated the rooms. And the floorboards creaked like those in an old, haunted house.

The stairs were fairly grand, made of an elegant hardwood. They were cold as century-old bone to the touch. The faded blue light gave them a dreamlike quality, as if the whole house were some sort of display or diorama meant for looking but not touching.

Nevertheless, something lived there. Something stirred in the dull blue light. Little feet slapped the icy staircase as they descended, creating the slightest creaking noises on the old steps.

A little girl, maybe five or six, in a frilly night gown, descended the stairs, like a ghost. She held a stuffed iguana close to her little chest. She peered into the inky blue stillness of her home and saw a spark of light. There was a warm glow building in the furthest corner of her house, along with whispers and hissing sounds and a strange smell.

She tiptoed down the stairs, trying to make as little noise as possible. As she got closer the angered hissing noises continued. She could hear a few choice words and laboured breathing as she approached the light source.

The light was coming from her living room. A small fire had been stoked in the old, wood-burning fireplace. There was a man sitting in front of the fire talking to himself angrily.

“I’ll get you, you asshole, you just wait! I know where you are! I’ll get you and I’ll-ergh!” The man muttered to himself as he nursed a wound in his shoulder. A bloody arrow had been tossed onto the hardwood floor by the fireside. He sat on a large green army coat in front of the fire, rocking back and forth like a caged animal, a blood-stained kitchen knife clutched in his hand.

“Santa, is that you?” The little girl said as she saw his scraggly beard and long hair. “It’s a little early. Where are all the presents?”

“Presents?” Carpenter said, furrowing his brow in a confused daze. Caught off guard by the little girl in her pyjamas, he gripped the knife tighter. “I don’t have any presents.”

“Oh,” the girl said, taking it surprisingly well. “Well, could you help me?” she said as she tightened her face a little. “My mommy and daddy are sick.” Her voice caught.

“Shhhhh,” Carpenter said. He put his finger up to his mouth. “Take me to them.” He smiled broadly, exposing his yellowed teeth. “Santa has something for them.” He stood up shakily, sliding the knife underneath his belt.

~

Romeo is Bleeding

 

Ladies Close Your Eyes Chapter 5 ‘Hole in the Silk’ (Raw)

Ok this in the overall book when it’s done will be the start of part 2. This is where we get introduced to the side plot with the fbi characters I pulled out of my hairy well-toned ass. Originally this story was intended as a small comic maybe around 3/4 issues long so I didn’t feel the need to go into depth and have characters investigating the murders from the other side for context but now I have free reign to do whatever the fuck I want. And goddamit I want slightly weird fbi agents looking at dead hookers!

So here’s the start of that, my main inspiration for them comes from movies like Surveillance and again tv shows like True Detective. So I wanted introverted slightly quirky people who could do the job of a toughed fed.

Updates on general shit, my day job has gotten a little crazy right now, hence the lack of content but I’m still going strong making that paper to fritter away on editors and marketing schemes. I was thinking of just giving away free money and see how that works, bribe motherfuckers to read my shit haha.

Also been reading a fellow zombie authors book and I’m actually really genuinely enjoying it. It’s like the walking dead novels but good haha. So I plan on doing a review for that sometime in the future if all goes well.

As always you can check out this whole chapter for the exclusive price of no monies on inkitt with the link provided.

Hole in the Silk

~

A black Lincoln town car pulled up along a dirt road on Riverview drive in Jurupa valley CA.

The car parked on the sidewalk in front of two green plastic garbage bins. The sidewalk consisted of a curb bracketing a patch of dirt and grass from the road. It was way out near the train tracks close to Riverside municipal on the other side of the valley.

It was a small back road, penned in by verdant hills on one side dotted with lonely single storey houses on the right. On the left looked like some kind of little ranch with a white picket fence made of metal out front. The fence of which had a wreath on it and a broken mailbox. Large trees surrounding it on one side, a small wire fence on the other. A single horse stood with its head dipped under what looked like an overturned sandwich box. Of the kind of sandwiches you get in gas stations, chewing silently. A small single storey house shrinking into the distance. Behind the overgrown shrubbery and white picket arch ways.

A shapely black woman got out of the driver’s seat. She leaned on the car door and looked around with an air of disenfranchisement. She wore a dark blue pant-suit with a grey camisole under her buttoned jacket. Her shoes were sensible black work shoes with raised rubber heels. Her hair was straight, tied back into a loose bun. She took a deep breath of fresh air, as if against her will and turned back to the car. She leaned on the open car door and craned her neck to look at the passenger seat. She was pretty trying to look dower with a practiced set of frown lines. Around her mid to early thirties, but it was catching up with her quick. She had a wide mouth, thin drawn on eye brows above small downturned almond eyes on a round warm face. Her nose was a thin strip down her face ending in a petite rounded nose. She wore no jewellery at all.

In the passenger seat was her partner. A man in his early forties, slim but well built. His suit looked more expensive than hers, just plain black with a white shirt and black skinny tie. He sat with his legs knotted playing Sudoku on his phone.

“Bored with Pokémon go already?” She said comically exasperated.

He looked up and smiled a cheeky ten-year-old smile “Too much walking”. He was handsome. Designer stubble left a little too long turned into a small shaggy salt and pepper beard. His hair was darker, slicked back tight on his head, his hairline dipped a little at the corners but it held out. He had a strong chin which dominated most of his face. The rest of it was pure jowls which sagged just a little more each day, hence the beard. He had a slightly flushed colour on his cheeks and forehead. Thin lips and small sincere eyes above a large ruddy nose with a few chips missing out of it.

She let out a breathy laugh shook her head, looked down the road and sucked her cheek before turning back to him. “Are you coming?”

He looked up, brow furrowed sincerely. “Hnh no, I’ll sit this one out”

“You sure?”

“I’ve seen it before”

“Ok” She sucked her gums and made a playful chupse sound as he smiled and shook his head. He was still looking down at his phone as she shut the door.

She straightened up and walked to the end of the drive towards a yellow sign with an arrow pointing right. The road itself looped back around the hills to a larger residential area.

She took her time walking down river view. She stopped out front a black set of gates in a walled off area of dirt. Probably for the horse to walk around in when it wasn’t pretending to be a truck stop sandwich.

She hung her hands on her hips and cast a glance down Avenue Juan Diaz. It was a reasonably nice area, quiet but for the trains. It was out of the way, in the dark you could come and go without crawling over too much bubble wrap.

The closest house was one on the corner. A single storey with a big driveway. A white Pontiac on the sidewalk out front and little red number on the driveway. Another white car in the open garage. It has a little stone path leading up a raised embankment shaded by large shaggy trees. There were two cop cars parked ‘cop-like’ at intersecting angles across the curved curb.

On the other side of the street on top of the hill was what looked like a sprawling villa or a large sand castle with large arched windows in the front. There was a large white unmarked van parked out front.

Her head on a swivel she turned back to the dirt road with the yellow sign. She was met by a steel gate almost at right angles to the black one for the horse. The gate was open at a slap-dash angle and dug into the loose dry earth. She lifted it and eased it across, it swung loose and scrapped to a stop, lifting up a layer of clay dust.

The path was too narrow for a car, lined on one side by a drainage ditch of some kind. The path itself looked well kept.

She walked without great haste down the path about a quarter of mile in the direction of the river. It lead her down a steep embankment overlooking the viaduct. One of the largest in California she’d been told.

The viaduct was a great concrete deco construction made of several arches. A train track ran across it and little else. It was slim bridge almost like one you’d expect ending in a large fort or a castle. There was only room either side for a walkway. Probably reserved for maintenance on trains that got stuck or upkeep on the bridge itself.

The embankment was overgrown with a crude path cut out leading down towards the river. She praised her sensible shoes as she gracefully descended the haphazard path towards the edge.

As she got further down the greenery thinned out and she could see them now.

~

Hole in the Silk

 

Archangel by Alexander Skel – A review

Not a huge fan f sci-fi or fantasy for that matter, I just find myself sifting through too much bullshit that doesn’t need to be there. I just read all this stuff that’s completely irrelevant to the plot about thrusters or some kind of magic barriers or something and I’m just like ‘Why? Get to the point!’ I just don’t have the kind of patience for either genre and taken seriously I find them really hammy.
Never-the-less I found this entertaining and engaging and it reminded me a lot of some decent anime but that being said I think it would be better as a comic or an anime. Because as a novel without any art it’s sort of generic, there’s nothing that really stands out about it. I’m reading the first chapter and I’m thinking about how similar it is to some other comic/game rather than what was different. The whole time I pictured it as a mission in armoured core or some anime more than I saw it as its own thing.
The action is great but its contextless, nebulous and sort of self-indulgent. It doesn’t have a point, it’s like a ten-year-old wrote down what he wants to see in a cartoon and then a really great writer took those ideas and brought them to life.
I really think this has potential and you are a really good writer, there are a few errors here and there and some sentences that had me like ‘Did Dan Brown do this?’, an example of that would be ‘The grenade exploded’ well no shit, it’s a grenade. But overall it’s well written and isn’t overly verbose like a lot of my work is.
But there’s no real story and in the first chapter it’s tempting to just gallop past it but you have to have some hook to make me keep reading, you can’t just have one fight scene and call it a day. Who is archangel? Why should I care if he lives or dies? This is why I say the action is contextless. Action is tense because we care about what happens to the character, you’ve given us no real reason to care about Archangel yet.
And what’s worse is this chapter I think has no real room for story that wouldn’t just be painful exposition, but that would still be better than no story in the first chapter.
I found the transition from Archangel to Rachel to be a little jarring but I like how you skimmed over the whole ‘Casualties of war feels’ generic bullshit in every anime ever haha.

Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t hate it, it was enjoyable to read and it really made me want to play a decent Armoured Core game, pity there hasn’t been one of those in a while haha.

If you wanna read his story you can reserve a copy here.
Archangel

Green Sunday – Chapter 9 Cobra Clutch

Here we are at last, the actual half way point of this beautiful disaster haha.

I’ve been a little preoccupied recently with not having any internet as of late, I have no idea why, last time it was copper stealing gypsies. Regardless my internet is back and I’m happy to inform you that because of it I feel a lot more pumped for nanowrimo. Because *drumroll/eyeroll* I actually reached a word count of around and above 1.5k. The necessary competitive amount for nanowrimo.
Now all I need to do is at the start of November, take an axe to my phone pole outside. Then I can be free from the distractions the internet levies on my dreams.

I dunno, I did like maybe 5k in three days, and its pretty crazy shit, I’m happy with it.

Ok enough of that this is actually my favourite chapter I had a lot of fun writing this one as you can probably tell. Even my editor could tell, it builds up to delicious crescendo of death and destruction, even reading over it again gave me chills of anticipation and left me wanting more. But that means writing another book and I’m just too fucking busy right now writing novellas and prepping for nanowrimo. And this one isn’t even making any money yet and why would it? I haven’t even started selling it or finished the editing process.

As usual you can find the full chapter and the previous chapters here completely for free.

 
Cobra Clutch

See you…

~

TJ squirmed on the back of the bike trying to lock his pudgy fingers around Sunday’s lithe frame. Fear overpowered his natural inclinations for tact and subtlety.

The engine of the Harley Continental coughed and spluttered. It roared like a rambunctious kitten. It was no huge feat for the bikers to catch up to them after finding their dead friend. Their bikes’ engine noises sounded like a giant bowling ball rolling down main street. TJ imagined that, to them, everyone looked like pins.

He looked back and saw only a cloud of smoke and dust. He half-expected a haunted pirate ship to emerge from it, with jet black sails. Crewed by stop motion skeletons. But as it cleared, only a parade of shiny chrome and black leather remained. A tide of ill-fitting pants and boots, with lots of buckles on them, moving gradually closer.

“Can we outrun them?” TJ yelped.

“No,” Sunday said, without even looking back.

“Then what are we gonna do?”

“This,” Sunday said, almost whispering. She stopped the bike with a sudden, anguished screeching of the Continental’s tires.

“What the fuck are you doing?? They’ll kill us!” TJ squealed.

“They might,” Sunday said. She propped the bike up with the kickstand and dismounted with the grace of a duchess.

TJ dismounted, almost falling. This brought back horrible memories of riding in a bike seat with his Mom when he was a kid.

“We’ve gotta hide,” he said breathlessly, clinging to one of his sweaty moobs. The sword in his other hand was shaking in its cheap faux lacquer sheath.

“Where?” Sunday said as she took up a batting stance, squeezing the grip of the bat in both hands. She took a few practice swings at that mean old air.

TJ looked around a full three sixty and realised they were on the edge of town. They were on an open street with no cover. “Looks like we’ll have to reason with them” Sunday said. A wry smirk peeled across her face as she walked past TJ with the bat across her shoulder.

The bikers didn’t speed up or slow down; they kept their solid, droning pace. They knew there was nowhere for them to run. And the building sounds of the engines filled the entire town with a primal dread.

They were on Sunday and TJ, like vultures, two at first, circling; the rest hung back a little to see what they’d do. The bikers were armed with pipes and chains and anything they could get their hands on. They dragged the chains behind their bikes and scraped the ground with their pipes, which, in a different situation, TJ would have found pretty cool. It kind of reminded him of the opening scene of ‘Akira’. But that was beside the point because they were probably trying to kill him.

Sunday breathed out slowly, closing her eyes and digging her feet into the cold, dry tarmac. She squeezed and released her grip on the bat as they circled, laughing and whooping.

One of them tore in front of her. His tires screeched in pain as they turned to face her, head on, but she didn’t move. He charged, screaming for her, but she remained still. He raised his pipe over his head as he angled his bike to give him a good swing. With an instant, ferocious finesse, she stepped forward into the arch of his strike and sunk her bat straight across his chest. He bounced off his bike. The bike came to a stop, scraping along the concrete.

Sunday breathed in calmly, closing her eyes again. She squeezed and released the handle of the bat as it hummed in her hands, sending shivers of pain all through her arms and down her back.

“You fucking bitch!” the biker’s friend screeched, pulling down the bandana covering his mouth. “I’m gonna fuck you up!”

Sunday wasn’t paying attention. She picked up the other biker’s discarded pipe, without looking at him, as he circled back to strafe her.

She looked it over as he closed the distance. Tears and snot streamed from his eyes, rage pounding on the accelerator.

She idly tossed the pipe away, and the biker was too angry to notice it fall directly into his path of destruction. By the time he wiped the snot out of his face, it was too late. He ran over the mangled pipe and it got caught up in the front tire. The front wheel twisted, forcing the bike to one side and down onto the concrete. It squealed to a stop and Sunday walked towards the downed biker.

He was pinned under the bike: both of his legs, broken for sure, coughing up blood, screaming, “You bitch, you fucking bitch!”

She was slower for some reason; she dragged the bat now, with one hand, and squeezed her arm with the other. She brought the bat up and split his head effortless. It made a mundane, wet imploding noise, like a watermelon dropped on concrete. His mouth went slack and his eyes rolled back in his head.  She pulled the spiked monstrosity out of his skull with a soggy, sucking noise.

Then silence, a slow deafening silence. Then a thunderous clap, breaking the silence apart, like Thor’s hammer on the clouds. A man, on an enormous, bucket-seat Harley, sat as if on a throne, watching. Surrounded by his cronies and with a fine-looking biker chick on the back of his bike, clinging to him, he slowly clapped with his huge, gloved hands.

“That was cute. I really dug that,” he said as he leaned forward, across his custom handlebars. There was a cobra design on the front of his bike, and his breaks and clutch were ornate snake heads with a brass finish. “Oh, you’re finished. Allow me to introduce myself.” He stroked his Fu Manchu moustache. A large Latin man, with tattoos covering most, if not all his arms, he was adorned with Mayan tribal art and Japanese rip offs. He wore a loosely cut denim waistcoat, the back of which was emblazoned with their insignia: an angel in a straitjacket with the words ‘Los Angeles Locos’ written below it. The ensemble was completed by a pair dark red, leather pants and aggressive-looking combat boots. “My name is Mojang. It’s a pleasure to meet you!” Before he finished, the bikes had fired up again. And before she knew it, Sunday was surrounded by ten maybe twelve bikers. Clouds of smoke encircled her, a maelstrom of twisted metal. Her hair swept across her face. She raised her bat with a bitter defiance, ready to swing at the next one that came close. She hoped to take them one at a time, like balls in a batting cage.

Before she could take a swing, a chain wrapped itself around her bat and it was wrenched from her hand, wrenched away with a high-pitched banshee laugh. Sunday turned, just in time to see a leather boot heel coming towards her face at high speed.

“That’s for Lamb Chop, bitch!” the woman said as she got off the back of the bike. The rider watched with a vicious grin on his face as the angry young biker woman approached. Sunday rose again, spitting blood.

Sunday stuck her tongue out as she wiped blood away from her mouth. The biker chick snorted. She wore high leather boots, all black leathers, a pinch of PVC and a ridiculously tight corset, holding in a much larger frame than Sunday’s. She had black, dyed hair with flecks of red in it, shaved in odd places. Piercings all around her head culminated in an obnoxious bull ring in her nose.

She closed the gap, between the bike and Sunday, with a bounding leap, her angry excitement fuelled by the wailing crowd. They whooped and hollered like wild animals. “What, bitch? You think you can take me-?” Before she could finish speaking, Sunday had football tackled her to the ground. Sunday pummelled her with balled up fists, like an angry gorilla, and thought nothing of biting the septum ring out of her nose and spitting it at her face. Before Sunday could finish her, a large arm snaked around Sunday’s neck and began choking the life out of her, lifting her a clear foot off the ground before dropping her, in a bundle, on the floor.

The large biker picked up Sunday’s flaccid body like a rag doll. The angry female biker stood and coughed blood.

“Damn, Del, she fucked you up.”

“Hold her, Roan!” She approached Sunday’s lifeless body, pulling a small knife from her thigh high boot. Del ripped Sunday’s shirt, with both hands, as she dangled unconscious in the brutish biker’s arms. The torn fabric revealed her pale, porcelain skin and petite, anaemic breasts. Del took a moment to pick a spot to plunge the knife into. “Bitch!”

“WAIT!” A booming voice cut over the sounds of engines, like ritual drums, building to a climax. “Hey, tubby! Yeah, you! You can stop hiding now; we’re not buying it,” Mojang bellowed as he leant prone over the handle bars of his enormous Harley.

TJ shook. The spittle in his mouth became sticky and it was hard for him to breathe. He had spent the last couple of minutes cowering behind the tiny Continental, trying to make himself invisible. Sadly, at his size, it was wishful thinking. He’d spent a lot of his life just doing exactly that, pretending to be invisible, but now there was nowhere to hide. There were eyes and teeth and fists and pipes and chains everywhere he rested his eyes. Spinning and spinning endlessly. He got dizzy trying to focus on a single point.

~

Cobra Clutch

Ladies Close Your Eyes Chapter 3 ‘Strange and Unproductive Thinking’ (Raw)

Yoyoyo people, not sure what I was doing there, forget that.

Updates, updates, updates, what schlock can I use to fill this space, why do I do this again?
Ok right well pretty much nothing amazing has changed in my life since I posted the last blog, just writing editing and spamming as usual. Still really enjoying doing a serious crime fiction story, it’s a little out there a la Surveillance/Memento but it’s written by me it was never going to be normal. Fuck I just made one of my fbi characters a carsick pokemon go player. C’mon, what do I get for that? Oh that’s right nothing haha.

It’s still smooth sailing as usual, trucking along, trying to build a mailing is gonna prove difficult since I have no free shit to give haha. So I may just plonk GS or this on amazon when I have some reviews and give one away to promote the other as an ebook.

I dunno haha.

As usual you can check out the full chapter on inkitt and if you like it give it a review and a share and don’t forget to subscribe to my mailing list on this page so I can shill you books when I have books to shill haha.

Strange and Unproductive Thinking

~
James woke up in a muggy haze, his head feeling two sizes too small. He squinted, he was lying on his back, the way his doctor told him not to. He saw the fan was still going but not doing a lot of anything. The night had taken with it it’s cool countenance and the morning glared at him through his unshaded bedroom window.

His alarm told him it was six am.

She was gone, her indentation still lingered.

It wasn’t that unusual. She usually got up much earlier than him and pottered around for a little bit before she went to her volunteering at the homeless shelter. Serving them breakfast made her feel better about not having to line up for breakfast.

He showered. He had one of those old fashioned shower baths with a curtain.

He got out of the shower and dried himself. He wiped the steam from the mirror and looked at his reflection. His hair slicked back in the two door mirrored cabinet over the sink. The seam of which was right in the middle. The door hinges were a little loose and they buckled in the middle causing the doors to sink inward a little. Thus resulting in an almost funhouse mirror reflection of James’ sallow face split down the middle. He looked at himself and saw a face that was still quite handsome but time had added a few extras where they weren’t needed. A bit too much neck fat made him almost afraid to tilt his head down. With his hair slicked back his hairline was disheartening. His face sagged in places it didn’t use to. The bags under his eyes were now permanent fixtures next to the flecks of little grey hairs that he struggled not to notice.

Other than that his forehead was relatively unlined and his eyes still looked youthful, the result of years of not being very expressive. This gave him some comfort as he stared blankly at his own reflection.

He continued to floss and brush his teeth, gargling mouth wash and spitting. He skipped shaving, his face was still fairly smooth from yesterday.

He was dressed now in a short sleeve shirt and tie, bent over the kitchen sink scratching the black off a burnt piece of toast.

He sat at the kitchen table alone reading the paper. A plate of abused toast sitting next to a glass of store brand orange juice. It was just one shade dingier than the name brand and came with it a slightly coppery after-taste.

The kitchen was new looking, but just as the bedroom it was bare. Aside from the slight messes, the toast ash in the sink, the jam and butter fingerprints on the counter. It looked like a show house. Beautiful in its emptiness.

It wasn’t a particularly large kitchen, mid-range, stone floors. The counter was some type of imitation granite. He sat at a small breakfast bar which corralled the fridge and stove and combination oven. He was sitting on a minimalist chair made of plastic with metal struts. The kind you get in sandwich shops that force you to lean on the counter like hipster bar stools. He read the paper with his back bolt upright.

The door on his left lead to the utility room, the door to his right lead to a small dining room and the door behind him lead into the hall.

Across from the breakfast bar which jutted out like a little pier in the middle of the kitchen. The sink and dishwasher which overlooked the only window onto the small AstroTurf back garden.

Both of them knew they couldn’t really afford to live here. So they rented, and neither of them really lived in the house as much as they just existed there. A stop over until they could get something more liveable and secure their place on the ever shrinking island of California’s middle class.

The headline of the paper read;

“MATCHBOOK KILLER SUSPECT IN CUSTODY (Pictured page 30)”

He padded his way through the sport section and quickly shirked the relationship section. The politics section was as grim as usual given a brisk scan. He mouthed the words but they didn’t really go anywhere. On page twenty-nine he thumbed the corner as if it was a crumpled copy of playboy stored under a neighbours shed.

He got his hopes up for nothing. Just a few glossies of cops with their backs turned and a white tarp with an arm sticking out of it.

He sighed and felt a little dirty, he could have just looked it up online if he wanted to but he was running a little late now.

He closed his eyes and remembered something he’d seen before but he couldn’t quite remember if it were real or a dream or both. A picture of a tree at dusk, there was a plane crash he thought or at least that’s what he was meant to think. Arms and legs hung from the tree, clean and perfect like doll parts. In fact, they looked just like odd mannequin pieces. So recalling it didn’t alarm him as he was sure even if that picture did exist it was fake or some tween’s edgy art project.

He then proceeding to eat his burnt toast with long teeth and wash it down with glugs of gritty orange juice.

~

James’ car was parked out front. A Hyundai with a sagging bumper. He left his single story house on North 12th street which was located in a suburb of Colton. He lived opposite the park which consisted of two fenced in basketball courts with a shaded eating area in the centre. Sparsely decorated with an array of trees ranging from sycamores to the standard palm. It was pretty much empty except for a handful of kids that should have been in school. They were playing some form dodge/basketball hybrid he’d never seen before.

It was an ok neighbourhood, the houses and lawns were well kept. All single storied with wire fences around the lawns and carports.

He took a right and then another past the park onto North Mt Vernon Avenue towards the river. He passed a new looking truck stop with a big blue bud light truck out front and a sign that read “LQUOR”.

There was a 7-11 on the other side and a cosy Mexican restaurant off the highway.

He continued along South Mt Vernon past a motel and a garage selling discount cylinder heads. It took him over the highway and snaked around to join it. He got onto the I-10 towards Redland and found himself in a conga-line of early morning commuters.

The glare on the windshield reminded him he forgot to wear sunglasses driving in California.

Despite that he had some time to take in the scenery squinting at pretty much flat nothing. A drainage canal ran underneath the highway and lead to a strange grouping of green trees walled on either side by thick concrete. The other side of which was a lot containing several mounds of brown dirt, the result of digging or some kind of construction.

On the left there were sickly looking spruce trees poking over the top of the freeway. He took the time to read some of the billboards which were suspended along his side of the highway. The first was for a pest control business, a picture of a suspicious looking cockroach. The next has a big red truck on it claiming to be the #1 at something vague. The one that followed just had “$720,000” written on it with a phone number below it. After that was a movie poster with a blue guy strangling a blue woman, it didn’t look that interesting.

~

Strange and Unproductive Thinking

 

Green Sunday Chapter 8 ‘Motorpsycho Nitemare’ (Edited)

Friends, romans country men, lend me your braziers.
No stop that.
OK shit, why do I do these intros again? Oh yeah to make me look like a crazy dumbass, check!

As you can see making decent progress, getting a handle on getting the older stuff edited and working on new projects. I’ve even assigned days of ‘marketing’, which just boils down to a couple of hours of copy and pasting, spamming the shit out of Facebook and twitter. I laugh at your ban hammer Facebook, I laugh at it!

I’m also in talks with some other independent ‘zombie authors’ for some shared content and possibly some cross promotion in the future. So yeah plenty of nepotism yet to come, yay for cronyism! (I’m being sarcastic).

I’m having so much fun with the other project I’m working on and it’s tricky to resist the temptation to completely pan everything else and work on that. I’ve been trying to increase my writing output to something resembling 2k words a day. So far life and work and just plain laziness and love of blenders is getting in my way. I don’t hold out much hope of winning nanowrimo as much as I see it as a fun way to get a really good start on new project I think has the potential of raising my profile significantly.
Right back to earth haha. This is the start of some interesting shit happening now, lots of action in this one, the next one is probably my favourite but this is fun too. Looking forward to getting this done and dusted so I can properly show this to people. I added someone on Facebook I’m interested for a cover design, it’s all coming together folks.

Enough blathering, you can find the full chapter for free as usual on inkitt at;
Motorpsycho Nitemare

The stillness of the early morning was deafening. Cold and brittle as the morning before, it was shattered by hurried footsteps and the sound of frantic panting. A red-haired man in sweats jogged with a limping gait, taking cold, wet, terrified breaths. He choked as much of the damp morning air down as he could to keep his limbs moving. Lactic acid seeped into every joint and muscle as he tried frantically to make his body work as it was supposed to.

A bright light pierced the mist of the ambivalent early morning, accompanied by an obnoxiously loud and tinny Harley continental engine tearing into life. A black-gloved hand revved it for the pleasure of the vibration in his gut. He grabbed his leather-clad crotch with his gloved hand to rearrange the furniture. The sound and smell of creaking leather brought a smile to his greasy, stubbly face.

“Let’s go fuck shit up.”

He pulled his denim waistcoat tighter across his skinny frame. The name “Lamchop” was embossed above the left breast pocket. The biker dragged a chain across his lap, the end of which had a barbed hook that he hung over the side of the bike. He nudged the kickstand with his leather boot and screeched off down the suburban street.

The town was so still, dead and dying. The red-headed jogger could’ve heard the engine on the other side of town, but he was sure it was closer. His eyes widened and his pupils shrank as he loped into the mist. He doubled his pace, his muscles crying out in pain with every terrified step.

The biker let out some slack in the chain, one hand on the handles of his bike. He let it swing idly at his side as he drove. Noticing a shape form in the mist, he took control of its swinging motion. With the strength of his wrist alone he began to spin the chain, building up speed, keeping full control of the bike as he did so.

The swinging chain reached terminal velocity. The shape was within striking distance. The biker released the chain as if launching a dog at an unsuspecting rabbit from the barrel of a gun. All the force from his wrist snapped it at the shape coming at him from the mist.

The chain struck with snake-like, snapping precision. It tangled around the feet of its victim, locking into place at the ankle. The savage, biting barbs rent flesh from the bone and stuck stalwart in the calf of the bait.

No noise was heard over the thunderous engine, no screams, no pleas for help. The chain stopped for a brief moment, slack as it was, then it took on life once again as the bike pulled away. The chain snaked up with a vicious, snapping sound, yanking its victim off their feet and dragging them across the neatly tarmacked suburban roadway.

The meat sack hit the ground with a sad, wet trumping sound. Bones in a bag of wet flour collided awkwardly as they were wrenched out of the mist with a hiss and a slick grinding sound. The biker stopped and, lifting his goggles, he looked back at the zombie he’d caught on the hook. A proud fisherman, the biker smiled and pulled his goggles back down. The creature writhed, ground down teeth falling from its mouth like popcorn. Its face was hot and slick from its date with the smooth tarmac, most of its features worn down. It reached its arm up, reminding him of the canteen scene from “Oliver Twist.”

“More? OK, well, why didn’t you say?” He laughed to himself and revved his engine once more.

The red-haired man in sweats reached his front door, his breath burning his lungs. The air felt like sandpaper, going in and coming out. His sweats were drenched and the cold tugged at him as he propped himself up against the door. He tapped on it.

“Sheila, it’s me. Let me in! They’re coming! For God’s sake, lemme’ in!”. He whispered in a low, raspy voice as he tapped the window of the door.

He looked back into the mist as he heard the engine’s noises carried by the empty streets. “Sheila, open the fucking door, or God help me, I wil- “An abrupt unlatching noise cut him off. His wife opened the door a crack and he slipped through it, as if by osmosis.

“Will, are you OK? Did you find any?” A slight woman with mousey brown hair stood in front of him, bunching up a plaid dress in her two skinny fists.

“I couldn’t. They were on me, these guys. They were staking out the pharmacy. They knew people would come for supplies. It was a trap; I barely got away!” His voice was hoarse. He took in large, gulping breaths as he spoke. Feelings of shame and guilt and terror fought for space in his brain. All thoughts were barged out of the way though by his singular desire for all the stale oxygen on the landing.

“I can’t last much longer without my insulin,” she said, whispering into her dress, a maudlin expression on her pale face. “If you were a real man, you’d get it.”

“Yeah, and if you weren’t a total retard you’d have stocked up before the zombie apocalypse. But we can’t all be perfect!”

“It’s not the apocalypse. The army’ll come. They will. We just have to last a little longer. I don’t know how much longer I can- “

“It’ll be OK, I promise,” he said softly as he collapsed on the stairs. “We’ll find a way.”

Just as he got a little comfortable and the air particles started forming an orderly queue into his lungs, a sharp tapping taxman knock set the couple’s teeth on edge.

“Who… who is it?” Sheila said

“Shhhh.” Will’s panic and anger flared into a harsh, sharp shushing noise.

“I’ve come to read tha meeta,” the voice beyond the door said in a faux, mocking English accent.

“W-what?”

“Shhhhhhh,” Will said again, sharper and louder.

“Yeah I can definitely hear a leak. You betta let me in or-”

A dead silence fell as the couple inside tried to stop breathing for moment. “Or I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll blow your house down.” The voice became lower and more caustic. All the humour drained out of it, sending a chill down the couple’s spines.

Will’s breath creaked out of his mouth. Then a jostling of the door handle sent him reeling up the stairs, fumbling for the banister.

“Where are you going?” Sheila screeched as he fled.

“Little pigs, let me in!”
Motorpsycho Nitemare

 

 

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑