Dark Winter: Book 2 – Chapter 21

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She descended into Hell.

Until this moment, Lindsay thought she knew what Hell looked like. Burned towns, dozens of dead bodies, the Undead trying to kill everyone she cared about. Men dying from crushed throats.

None of it compared. The horror that waited in the dark burned itself into Lindsay’s memory. It wasn’t the Undead that littered the ground, or the smell of rot and decay, or even the desiccated corpses left behind by the Infected, but the dead who lay among them.

Once the soldiers dispatched the Infected, they’d begun burning chemical lights for illumination. What they revealed were hundreds of forms covered by plastic sheets. The sheets were sealed to the floor, preserving the contents within. When Lindsay approached, she saw the sheets had small windows at one end.

All of them had the faces of the dead beneath. Continue reading

Dark Winter: Book 2 – Chapter 20

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James waited for over an hour in the briefing room. The men waiting with him were both armed. He knew their names but he really didn’t know the men themselves. One was named Tom and the other Bradley, at least he thought they were. Neither tried to make small talk.

What he’d seen down in the labs he couldn’t reconcile. Why were they keeping people in those closets? Why were they held like animals? Why did they move Chris out of the main cells like that? Who were those people in the testing rooms?

Was it all true? Were they infecting people on purpose? Chris said they were trying to turn it into a weapon but why? The world was already dying, why kill it more? And what had he said about his daughter? They’d infected his daughter? Continue reading

Another Delayed Chapter :(

Hey everyone, just a quick update that it looks as though Chapter 20 of Dark Winter will be delayed, likely for a week. I’m moving next week and work has us working overtime again. So between packing and long hours at the office, I just can’t find the hours this week.

I hate doing this, because it’s been very prevalent these past few months. Now, I don’t discuss my day job very often but due to my frequent delays, I thought it might be worthwhile to explain at least partially what I do.

I work in Quality Assurance as a Senior Tester for a major MMO Video Game company. I won’t bother saying which one but you smart cookies can probably find out. We’re launching a major thing this week and the past few months have been very taxing on the QA team. We all want to see the game succeed, but still the hours can be grueling and disheartening. Sometimes I just get home and powering on a computer feels like a lot of effort.

Still, writing is a release but it has suffered from the strain. Dark Winter is almost done. There are maybe 10 chapters left, though probably less. I’m really excited about finishing it and getting it complete for all of you who have been following along so reliably.

So, thank you for that and I apologize for my frequent delays. Hopefully they will be kept at a minimum.

– Mike

Dark Winter: Book 2 – Chapter 19

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They gave Lindsay back her armor and rifle, though without Katie’s help, she had trouble remembering how it all went together. She refused to ask for help from any of these people though and managed the forearm, shin and chest armor after a short time. It felt heavy and awkward, like she’d forgotten to tighten something. It was too long in the chest and she briefly wondered if they’d given her Katie’s armor. She hoped they did.

The rifle she knew better. The little carbine was light but still heavy enough to feel powerful in her hands. A tactical strap went over her head and under her arm, holding it ready to use but also secure if she needed her hands. With the squeeze of her finger, she could have killed those men at the radio station with this weapon. Instead she’d stabbed one to death and crushed the throat of another. She’d done that. Lindsay Volk, Mount Hope High School Senior had killed two men brutally and without remorse. That lack of feeling still scared her. It was like something inside of her was numb and cold.

“Ready to go?” a gruff voice said behind her. She turned, seeing the man called Holden standing there in the doorway of the armory. He wore an all black uniform, body armor, and helmet with a strange goggle-like protrusion on it. Only the patch on his shoulder was white, though a black half-circle broke the white field in half. A black sun rising over a white field. She wondered why they’d chosen such an ominous name. Black Dawn.

It sounded evil. Continue reading

Dark Winter: Book 2 – Chapter 18

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James paced the small room, occasionally banging on the door with the heel of his palm. The first few times, one of the men outside opened it and asked what he wanted. When he said he wanted to leave, they just shut the door again. He really wished he had a window like Janine did. He could have squeezed out of it, maybe.

Time passed without word from anyone. His meals were brought to him twice a day, at least he believed it was twice a day. I really am a fucking prisoner, he thought over and over. He began to demand that his father see him. That he be allowed to speak with him. Neither request was granted. After five meals went by, James felt like he was going mad.

He lay on his cot, rereading Glyphbinder for the twenty-third time and regretting not buying the sequels, when there came a knock on the door. One of his guards announced he had a visitor and, expecting it to be his father, James stood up and prepared his tirade. Continue reading