Darkest Hour – Chapter 1

I stood amidst the corpses of friends and allies, their blood everywhere soaking the walls and fields. The gore was so unimaginable I was helpless before it and fell to my knees with shaking hands and uncontrollable tears.

The world cracked and fell away. There came a light, a brilliant, blinding light to erase our world. I stared, transfixed, my gaze torn away from the face of my mother. My memory yet burns with the memory, her lips frozen in that terrible light with the last syllables of my name upon them.

From the heavens, came our Hell. I saw them as great shadows with one giant eye. They descended and fell upon the land and I knew the face of death.

The end had come.

– from The Cycle of Rebirth, Chapter 12, Verse 14

Chapter 1

 Just when I’d thought my day couldn’t get any worse, the world decided to end.

The bastard came down right over City Hall, digging giant tentacle appendages into Penn Square like an omni-blade through butter. I watched, dumbstruck, as the damn thing obliterated William Penn’s bronzed visage from the face of the Earth. I raised my M-3 and fired at that red eye until my thermal clip was full. The act of ejecting it woke me from my idiocy just in time to grab the nearest gawking civilian and haul him bodily into the cafe I’d just come from.

The street exploded into a million fragments of superheated polycrete and old fashioned masonry. I kept my head down and managed to kick over a table just in time for the shards to embed themselves in its plastic exterior. Another blast ripped through the air with a deafening sound that ripped a scream from my throat.

The world went red and burned away to a stark white nothing. I felt something pop in my ears and a sudden silence overcame me, followed by a high pitched ringing. For a heartbeat I thought I’d died, but my vision returned enough to see the world through flashes of light and darkness.

The cafe no longer had a wall and the ceiling was gone. I could see daylight above me, several hundred stories of building ripped open like a serrated can. Debris fell all around me, crashing into the street, into parked cars, and worse… into people. Continue reading

Advertisements

Next week’s stories

Now that The Squire has made its full run, it’s time for something new! I’ve got some big plans for the coming weeks and I hope you (and all your friends who you’re going to tell, right?) will enjoy it. I’m returning to Science Fiction full time with two new stories. One is fan fiction again, this time featuring Bioware’s Mass Effect universe and the second is an original.

Before I get into the stories themselves, I’ll be updating 3 times a week: Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I’ll be taking the weekend off, though I’ll still be writing. A writer’s job never rests.

Fan Fiction Mondays

Every Monday I’ll be posting the newest chapters of my Mass Effect story, Darkest Hour. In the event that I’m unable to post on that Monday, I plan to feature someone else’s fan fiction for your enjoyment.

Wednesday and Fridays

On Wednesdays and Fridays will be updates for my original Science Fiction story Icarus.

Now to tell you about the stories themselves:

Darkest Hour is a brand new piece of Fan Fiction set in Bioware’s Mass Effect Universe. For those who have played the games, it takes place during the events of Mass Effect 3. For those who haven’t played the games, giant, sentient, synthetic machines are invading and mankind is on the verge of extinction. If it sounds a little like the premise of Battlestar Galactica, you’re not half-wrong. 

Synopsis

Lieutenant James Wolfe is having the worst day of his life when the world decides to end. His girlfriend refused to marry him, his mother has announced that she has an incurable form of Eezo infection and his sister’s mental condition is worsening. When the Reapers land in the city of Philadelphia, he joins the desperate and futile attempt to fight back. Despite overwhelming loss of life, hope remains when the local resistance receives a strange transmission stating it contains vital information on defeating the Reapers. Unfortunately, no one can crack the security code the plans are concealed in.

No one except Kylie, Wolfe’s sister.

With a little help from an eccentric infiltrator and the powerful biotic who refused to wear his ring, James must carry this transmission into the rural reaches of Pennsylvania. The group must evade Reaper forces and mercenaries gone rogue in the vain hope that Kylie will be able to crack the mysterious code during Earth’s darkest hour.

Read new installments of Darkest Hour every Monday!

Icarus is a brand new, original piece of Science Fiction about mankind’s reach for the stars. Ever since I was a kid, I would look up at the night sky and wonder what existed out there beyond the distant lights of Deneb, Betelgeuse or Altair. In this story, I try to explore that sense of wonder through the cynical eye of a writer who accepts a dangerous assignment to travel where humans have only dreamed.

Synopsis

NASA’s prototype deep-space science vessel, the Icarus, is going to Alpha Centauri and William Shriver is not the kind of man you’d think to send.

He doesn’t know the first thing about the Time-Vortex Tunnels or how a star drive works. He doesn’t even read Science Fiction books, but when the pay and opportunity to spend ten years away from Earth comes up, he can’t help but volunteer. As a writer, his job will be to experience the trip and write down his observations in the hope that once he comes back to earth, he will have one hell of a story to tell.

Hell could be the story he brings back.

Written in the form of Shriver’s journal entries, Icarus tells the story of mankind’s first journey through the mysterious Time-Vortex Tunnels. These fluxes in space-time allow a ship to travel a great distance in a fraction of the time. It will take the Icarus approximately four and a half years to reach Alpha Centauri, but an extended stay in cramped quarters with a group of strangers isn’t the only problems awaiting the crew of the Icarus.

Like the fable, will the Icarus fly too close the far-distant star, daring what mankind should never dare?

With new entries coming every Wednesday and Friday, Icarus will feature short entries that you can easily digest in a few minutes, the perfect thing for when you have an itch for fiction but not a lot of time to read. Be sure to check it out and if you enjoy it, tell your friends!