In the heat and humidity of September in Mumbai, a small, white organism grew inside the walls of The Sahil Hotel on Behram Road. The walls were made to resist mold and most fungal growth, yet this persisted. It concentrated most heavily inside Room Two-Twenty-One which had gone unused and uncleaned for a week before being given to Joseph Patel, a business man out of New York in the United States. When he’d gotten the room, he complained that it smelled musty.
That morning, three cleaning women went in while he was out at a meeting and aired it out. They did not notice the spores that floated in the sunlight, mistaking them for dust. Laboring for nearly an hour, they managed to mask the smell that had offended Joseph Patel. When he returned that afternoon, the whole room smelled of lavender and pine and he slept soundly all night.
On the third morning of his stay, Joseph woke in the middle of the night with a headache and he felt like his sinuses was packed with cotton. He took an aspirin and went back to bed. He woke again before dawn and felt a cold coming on. Cursing his luck, he listed every person he met with this week and decided to lay the blame on Andil Vuschel, the salesman from Eramal. Andil had been sneezing through his entire presentation and didn’t cover his mouth once.
Three months ago a man got on a plane in India thinking he had a cold. What he carried inside of him was a disease that was highly infectious and resistant to most known forms of medication. Within weeks, the disease has spread across the globe and there is no cure.
The world calls it The Pale Horse.
For twenty year-old Meda Ahachik, her vacation should have been spent worrying about upcoming finals. Instead, the pandemic reaches the city of Baltimore, and Meda finds herself relying on the teachings of a family she’d left far behind.
“I am the swarm. Armies will be shattered. Worlds will burn.” – Kerrigan, Starcraft 2: Heart of the Swarm
There was darkness and pain, terrible pain. It burrowed deep, shocking her to the core and exploding into her mind. Rational thought was beyond her. All she could do was draw a breath, first one and then a second. A third. A fourth. Slowly, her mind began to clear.
Where am I? What happened?
The screaming was so loud. Was she screaming? Katie brought a hand up to her own lips and found them shut tight. Something wet and warm coated her fingers. She tasted copper. Blood. She was bleeding. Her tongue was on fire. Had she bitten it?
There was a heavy thump above her, followed by wild, erratic bangs, like someone pounding on a car roof. Continue reading →
So, I am in the midst of some major fiction writing.
The company I work for is very tight on what I can and can not do with intellectual property that may earn me money, so every piece of literature I write (for profit) has to be passed through a strict process of approval. For that reason, I’m turning this blog into something of an outlet for my other, less salable work. It will be the place where all my non-earning writing can go, which will be cool! I’ll write whatever comes to my mind and wants an outlet. It’ll be fun.
If I have some fan fiction to write, it’ll go here. If I have some horribly cliché story idea that I just want to write about anyway? No problem! This will be a blog where my fun, just-for-kicks stories can find a home. If and when any of my professional work comes out, I’ll be sure to link you all. Then you can be the gal or guy that says “Hey, I read that guy’s bullshit stories!” Should we ever meet at a signing or a Convention, we can laugh about them.
And now, an updated image of my upcoming story header.
I’m not sure it’s quite done yet. It might go through a few more iterations. I feel like it might need a subtitle. We’ll see as time goes on.
Good news everyone! I’ve decided to post some more updates about my writing today and you know what that means?
Yeah… I’m behind again. It’s not my fault, I swear! Well, actually, that’s a lie. Sorry. As I sit here listening to “The Glass Prison” by Dream Theatre, I’m reminded how time can get away from us, closing in around us with its invisible, intangible walls until there’s hardly any room to breathe. That’s how I feel lately, but it’s all for the best. The wife and I are moving soon, in three weeks in fact, and a great deal of time lately is split between a ton of overtime at work and packing up the apartment. I’m veryexcited about this move because at our new place I will have my very own writing room! Right? How cool is that? I’ll have my own quiet space to work, plot and scheme.
Aderyn stumbled backward, fighting for breath. She held out a hand, either to ward off the next blow or to submit. In her confused, desperate fight for air, she wasn’t sure which one she meant to do. Opposite her, Kendrick sighed and stood up straight, stretching his arms above his head.
“You know, if this had been a real fight, you’d be dead right now,” he said.
Hours, days perhaps, passed. Aderyn lost track of time in the tiny room, alone with her thoughts and memories. At first she slept and waited, but after a time the dreams grew too terrible. They were always of her mother or her brother Caiden. Awful dreams, painful dreams.
Only once did she dream of her father. It was a brief, sweet dream that faded like flavor ice on the tongue. When she woke that time she desperately wanted to hold onto it, to remember it but all she could recall was her father’s laugh. It was deep and wonderful, the kind of laugh that made everyone else in the room smile. Aderyn remembered smiling so many times. Continue reading →
“It’s all right,” Resh said. “They just want to ask you a few questions.”
It took all the calm she had left to step into the room and stand before them. Each of them looked as old as the Governess, if not older. They all regarded her like she had, with suspicion and distrust.
“Young lady,” said the one in the center, a woman with gray hair and a rasping voice. “Tell us who you are.” Continue reading →
In time the trees thinned and gave way to high grass and shrubbery. By then Aderyn was wheezing and her eyes and exposed skin felt red and raw and itchy. She needed to rest often and she drained the bottle of water Resh gave her.
“Your injection is wearing off,” he said, worry coloring his voice. “We need to get you to the tunnels soon or you’ll relapse.” Continue reading →