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The cover art to the upcoming story “The Druids Son: A Historical Fable Of The Spirit Realm” Available only on Amazon 5/5/15

THEDRUIDSSON

Hello there. A few tid bits about the new story coming up. First off I really do have a lot of fun with the Horror stories, in case you didn’t notice they allow me to vent a Hell of a lot of frustration towards people and the world in general. LOL But because they are meant to introduce a threat into the series, they are generally lopsided stories of unsuspecting people meeting gruesome fates at the hands of something they never allowed themselves to really believe in, so they are immediately at a disadvantage. The other stories are truly my favorites however because they tend to introduce more of the rules and concepts of this universe that the stories take place in they introduce even more of the denizens that exist in it as well as establish characters who you see later on as the story reaches the point of a much larger story line or Epic Fable. ūüėĬ†Natasha, who I think is going to be a favorite is born in the upcoming story, so we learn how a spirit guide/guardian comes to be in the first place and how they differ from their physical counterparts. There is a Druid and a Witch, so we also get to see how the Magic users of the old world understood and and interacted with the Spirit Realm. ūüėĬ†Dragon, you knew it was only a matter of time before I wrote one into the series and what better way to introduce them than have one as the Spirit Guide of a bad ass Druid? Even more Nature Spirits, that is a given since Druids were like the shepherds of the Natural World. The story takes place pre Christianity, but we are already seeing how greedy,, evil, empty people are using the “favor” of the gods to manipulate and control the population as well as how they fear the Magic users who have the power forged from their genuine connection to the Spirit Realm. It takes place a couple centuries after the Elves vanished from the human world, So while you meet younger versions of Lorilei and Illuvian you see a little more in depth and fresh, the sadness their people carry with them from having to leave humans to their own devices. A first look at the Divine of the old world, first time a goddess and god make an appearance in the series, and they are mama and papa to a spirit guide/guardian to give you an idea of the type of purpose these particular two have in the grand scheme of things. Also last thing you will notice a couple familiar concepts to modern religion. The Druids and the Witches have a principle they follow in the belief that everyone will come to their spiritual path in their own way and in the lifetime that they are ready to but for those who already walk the spiritual path like themselves, they are not meant to love each other the way others fall in love and have families, procreation of the human race is a thing for the ones who have not chosen their current incarnation as the lifetime where they walk the spirit path. That said we are attracted to who we are attracted to, we love who we love and there really isn’t going to be a damn thing we can do about it in the end and so the Druid and Witch give birth to a child against the beliefs of their own people, but we see the forbidden union being endorsed by deities who foresee a time when the magic users are going to have to blend in with the common folk in order to keep from being completely wiped out, to keep that genuine connection with the Spirit Realm alive in humans. Okay I think I’ve given enough away, no wait. A week from now the first part of the story is going up here and the blog as a free preview of the story itself and right off the bat you will see just how bad ass a Druid and his Spirit Dragon can really be.

The following is an excerpt from my forthcoming short story¬†“The Journey To The River: An Adventure Fable Of The Spirit Realm” Copyright 2014 By Shayne Workman. ¬†Available on Amazon.com Kindle Store ¬†JANUARY 31ST, 2015. Cover art coming soon.

 

The Journey To The River: An Adventure Fable Of The Spirit Realm

By Shayne Workman

 

¬† ¬† ¬†‚ÄúYOU WERE GOING TO QUIT ANYWAY, LIKE YOU ALWAYS DID BEFORE! I KNOW YOU, YOU WERE¬†GETTING THAT SAME JADED ATTITUDE THAT YOU ALWAYS GET BEFORE YOU QUIT.‚ÄĚ Kelly screamed. On¬†some level she did have a point, that had been Damon’s MO for years, but that was before they were¬†married, before their son Todd was born twelve years before. ‚ÄúGETTING? GETTING? YOU REALLY¬†HAVE HAD YOUR HEAD UP YOUR ASS IF YOU COULDN’T SEE THAT I HAD, HAD IT WITH THAT PLACE FOR¬†YEARS, YEARS GODDAMN IT AND I WAS STILL HOLDING ON TO IT, NO MATTER HOW FUCKING¬†MISERABLE IT MADE ME!‚ÄĚ Damon fired back. Kelly only stood there rolling her eyes. ‚ÄúI can’t imagine¬†what for.‚ÄĚ She said, a venomous sarcasm had given her voice a cold edge. ‚ÄúFOR YOU, FOR TODD, FOR¬†OUR FAMILY, WHY CAN’T YOU SEE THAT I HAVE DONE EVERYTHING I CAN TO NOT BE THAT PERSON¬†THAT I WAS BEFORE WE GOT MARRIED? WHY CAN’T YOU QUIT THROWING EVERYTHING I DID AS A¬†STUPID ASS KID IN MY FUCKING FACE? WHY IS IT NEVER GOOD ENOUGH FOR YOU, NO MATTER WHAT¬†IT’S NEVER FUCKING GOOD ENOUGH FOR YOU. IF YOU HATED ME SO FUCKING BAD FOR WHAT I DID¬†THEN, WHY THE FUCK DID YOU PUSH ME TO GET MARRIED TO YOU? WAS IT JUST TO USE ME TO GET¬†WHATEVER SUPPORT YOU COULD FROM SOMEONE WHO WAS ALWAYS THERE?‚ÄĚ Damon was so pissed¬†that he was near tears as he screamed his pain at his wife who only stood there coldly staring at him. ‚ÄúSo that’s what it is, you’re jealous of what I have that you don’t.‚ÄĚ That same venomous sarcasm in¬†her voice. It’s how their fights always seemed to go, a simple disagreement turned into a screaming¬†match and as soon as Damon had gotten worked up Kelly would then switch gears to that damn¬†condescending sarcasm, pushing him even further into his anger. Even when he tried to walk away, she¬†would follow him hounding him every step until he felt like there was no escape but to go through a¬†fight that would last hours and leave them both mentally and physically exhausted, from the¬†outpouring of emotions. It had become a vicious cycle, that neither seemed to be able to break. He¬†didn’t want this, he shook his head. ‚ÄúIf I was so damn jealous I would never put my name to anything¬†you do, because I could never stand to be second billing in anything. You don’t even act like it matters,¬†there’s no appreciation, or respect for anything I do. Like everything else to you it just isn’t good¬†enough. You don’t want me to bend, you want me to break.‚ÄĚ

Damon had a point, but the sad truth was, the points made by either, mattered little to twelve year old Todd who sat alone in his room, unable to drown out the sounds of chaos coming from down the hall. It had been getting worse over the last few months, the fighting, throwing things. He was beginning to wonder if they even knew that he was there hearing it all, beginning to wonder if they even cared. Todd closed his eyes and silently told himself to think to concentrate on anything else but the fight that was taking place between his mom and dad. Without warning or reason the image of a full grown Kodiak bear entered the boys mind, a huge muscular frame beneath a mountain of thick, coarse fur, but it was the strange eyes it had, they were a kind of deep amber color and the pupils were like tiny pin pricks of black within the colorful irises, that made it feel familiar to him. Momentarily alarmed from the image, Todd opened his eyes, all the yelling started biting into his nerves again and he decided in that moment all he wanted was silence.

He walked right past them, neither stopping their fight long enough to even notice he was there, or that he was on his way to walk out the door. Such is it always in heated moments, in the storm of emotion people get lost in they often become oblivious. Oblivious to themselves, to each other as each screams their battle, with the intent to be heard but not listen, to the places they are in when these moments strike, and to the people around, but most especially the ones that would be damaged most, the others they love, who simply do not want to face the fighting between the people they share so many memories with. Damon and Kelly were so oblivious that they did not even notice Todd was gone until the following day, where the involvement of the local police department and a few phone calls revealed that the boy was in the hospital after being hit while riding his bike which left him in critical condition.

Todd immediately got on his bike as soon as he was out of the house and started riding down¬†the street. As the gentle springtime breeze enveloped him, hot tears began pouring from his eyes as¬†he thought about better times with his family, the picnics in the park, trips to the zoo, family dinners.¬†What happened? How did it come to this? Why? The hurt and frustration settled in further as he¬†realized that none of these questions could be answered, not by him anyway, and the only ones who¬†could answer that were too busy screaming at each other to put the young boy’s mind at ease. In the¬†storm of emotion people get lost in, they often become oblivious, the sadness and anger of child who¬†is an innocent victim is no different. Todd never thought about his position in an almost blind curve,¬†never saw the vehicle that hit him head on to even have a chance to react in time, For Todd the world¬†suddenly went black.

When he came to he was standing in the lobby of a hospital. What am I doing here? Why can’t¬†I remember how I got here? He thought. Suddenly freaked out by the fact that none of the faces¬†around him were familiar to him and so in a panic he found himself running around the large lobby¬†area. ‚Äú MOM! DAD!‚ÄĚ Repeatedly the boy screamed becoming more alarmed by the moment as he¬†realized that not only was he not getting an answer but everyone in the lobby acted like they did not even know he was there¬†despite the scene he was making. He ran for the exit needing to get his¬†bearings, the daylight and parked cars on the other side a beacon for his need to remove himself from¬†his over sterile artificial surroundings. Out the door he ran screaming. ‚ÄúMOM! DAD! WHERE ARE¬†YOU?!‚ÄĚ Todd stopped dead as he realized that he was not standing in the sunlit parking lot of the¬†hospital, but a dense and dead looking forest in the dark of night. He saw it, the shadow of the large¬†beast as it grunted, making its way through the forest. Not wanting to be spotted, Todd hid behind the¬†largest tree he could find. What’s going on here? His frightened mind raced trying to make sense of¬†all that was happening. Suddenly from overhead came the most blood curdling screech he had ever¬†heard in his life, it was as though hundreds of people were screaming in agony all at once over the ear¬†piercing sound of some unknown creature. Risking a look up into the night sky Todd saw three overly¬†large birdlike creatures, only they weren’t birds at all, they were wearing clothing and were almost¬†impossible to spot as they were nearly the dark charcoal color of the sky itself. One of them broke¬†from the flock and circled back, it only took Todd a second to realize that it was coming back for him.¬†Again came the terrible screech as the creature dove in. Todd started running in what believed was¬†the direction he had come from and had that confirmed as he saw the entrance to the hospital once¬†more.

The creature was gaining on him with incredible speed, but with a renewed burst of energy,¬†Todd dove through the entryway doors, only then did he risk a look behind. It was bright, the sunlit¬†parking lot of the hospital that was once more what was seen as the outside world.¬†The lights overhead in the lobby and hallway of the hospital flickered, causing the place to go¬†dim. Todd’s heart was beating faster than it ever had before, he was panting as much from fear as the¬†effort to make it back inside where it was safe. From behind him there came a soft tapping on the¬†glass door. Scared but unable to resist the urge to see what was behind him, Todd turned and¬†immediately screamed. The thing that was standing on the other side of the entryway looked like¬†something out of a twisted nightmare. It’s appearance almost human with pale skin and lidless eyes¬†that were white and bloodshot. It’s impossibly large mouth a giant grin of razor sharp teeth from ear to¬†ear. Again it tapped on the glass with one hideously elongated finger, and started laughing. Todd fell¬†backwards, frozen in terror at the very sight of his tormentor, which itself stood out in stark contrast¬†with the rest of the illusion of the sunlit parking lot. Without warning the creature morphed into what¬†Todd immediately recognized as the birdlike creature that had chased him in the forest. It pressed its¬†now charcoal face against the glass staring at Todd with now empty eye sockets. The thing stepped¬†back and let loose another of its awful screeches, shaking its shoulders another thirty screams of agony¬†joined it. The creature threw itself against the glass causing the whole frame to shake and the lights inside to go dim once¬†more. Todd could only sit there in the floor frozen by sheer terror and await¬†whatever fate the horrid creature had in store for him.

Because Amazon.com¬†did not give me the option of what to use as a sample for my short story, I am giving you my own. The following is an excerpt from¬†“The Trickster: A Horror Fable Of The Spirit ¬†Realm” ¬†Copyright 2014 By Shayne Workman, available now at Amazon.com Kindle Store for 2.99.

 

The Trickster: A Horror Fable Of The Spirit Realm

By Shayne Workman

 

Jordan sat in the chair holding Suzie. “How is daddy‚Äôs little princess this evening.” Suzie answered with a toothless grin and a coo. Jordan laughed, it never ceased to amaze him the way it seemed children, even those as new to the world as his daughter could have such a wonderful sense of understanding of the world around them. “You get that from me don’t you? You get that from daddy, you’re a smart¬†one and you’re going to grow up and help change the whole world aren’t you?” Jordan‚Äôs wife Amanda was standing in the doorway from the kitchen watching this with a smile on her face. “Just as long as she doesn’t take after you where it comes to changing diapers.” Jordan smiled as he looked over his shoulder. “Yeah, I’ve never been much good at the dirty work. Hopefully that is something she inherits from her mommy, so she ends up better rounded than me.” Amanda walked through. ‚ÄúI put the order in for Chinese, it should be delivered here shortly.” She said. Just then Suzie opened her mouth and spewed formula down Jordan‚Äôs arm. “Aaaggh, Heh heh, I don’t think our little girl likes the sound of that very much.” He said, handing her off to his wife as he went to get a wet rag for all of them. “How are finals going so far?” She asked as he came back into the room with two damp wash cloths. “Same as usual, frantic. You know I have to wonder if half of them even realize that they do more to hurt their chances of doing well, when they work themselves up in a frenzy like that, instead of having a well laid out plan of attack and just calmly executing it like they have some sense.” Amanda smiled as she wiped off Suzie‚Äôs face with the rag. She loved her husband, he had always been good to her and so far he was proving to be an excellent father, but remembering what she had been like in college when they first met, she wouldn’t want to be one of his students for anything in the world. As she looked at her daughters face she wondered if, in time maybe she would actually teach him the value of not always being so heavy handed. “Try not to terrorize them too bad, many of them are still just kids themselves and not everyone can be a super brain.” He shook his head as he unbuttoned his shirt. “It’s what I get paid for dear, I mean, what happens when they fail and drop out? I’ll tell you what happens, they go and work these sad little minimum wage jobs and grow jaded and hateful because they are trying to raise their own families and can barely make ends meet because they think the world failed them, instead of the other way around and they end up making everyone else around them miserable including the brats they fail to raise, who in turn poke fun at anything that resembles a ray of hope for humanity. Do you want our daughter growing up in world like that? I don’t.” Amanda just smiled, heavy handed she thought to herself.

Later that evening Jordan sat in his study going through his stack of papers. Amanda walked in. “I just put Suzie down for the night, hopefully.” Jordan smiled as he peered at her from the page he was reading over. “I take it you’re about to put yourself down for the night.” He said. “Yes, it’s been a long day. Are you coming soon, or are you still going to be awhile?” She asked him. “I have a few more things I want to try to catch up on, then yes I will be in.” She walked over to him and bent down to kiss him goodnight. “Try not to wear yourself too thin.” He gently kissed the back of her hand. “Just a few more things I swear, it‚Äôs been a long day for me too.” He watched her leave the study and then went back to reading the paper he had in his hand. His vision was getting a little blurry he noticed. Maybe I’m more tired than I thought. That won’t do and these papers aren’t going to grade themselves. He thought to himself. Taking off his reading glasses and rubbing his eyes, he leaned back in his chair. Suddenly he caught himself thinking about the strange looking Voo Doo dog, it was clearly a mutt, but it was decent sized and the shape of the head suggested that it had Pit Bull in it somewhere. He laughed. Jesus, it’s almost like I’m getting obsessed over that damn dog. Just put it out of your mind. He thought. He continued sitting there leaned back in his chair.

Jordan jerked awake sitting bolt upright in bed. He had just had the strangest sensation one could have in a sleep state, he had felt himself falling. He took several deep breaths to balance himself. That feeling wasn’t all that had him confused. He remembered being in the study what felt like only moments ago, but there was daylight outside and for the life of him he could not remember ever coming to bed….last night? Good Lord. He thought, it really had felt like only a couple minutes had passed since he had been sitting at his desk. He decided that he would ask Amanda when he got downstairs, because apparently she had beaten him at getting up. “I’m starting to think everyone’s right, I need to go a little easier than I have been.” Thirty minutes later he was downstairs ready for his day, but he was slightly distressed that there was no sign of either Amanda or Suzie. He went into the kitchen to the fridge where they always left notes to each other if anything had come up that required one of them to leave without the other one knowing. There on the little magnetic dry erase board in Amanda‚Äôs writing was a note that read. “Took Suzie with me for my yearly checkup.” Jordan breathed a sigh of relief. This day had already started out strangely as it was, this however, was a sign of normalcy.

As he walked out the front door his neighbor Henry smiled and waved. “Good morning Jordan, are you off to the university?” Jordan waved back. “Good morning Henry. No I don’t go in today. I just thought I would go for a walk, get out of the house you know.” Henry continued smiling. “It’s certainly a beautiful day for it.” He said. “It certainly is, well I’ll catch up with you later.” Jordan said and continued on his way. He never noticed the odd stillness of the day, or the fact that Henry was still watching him as he walked away with the same smile on his face. He walked to the market he had been to the day before to get a bottle of water, he had planned to walk to the park and knew he would be thirsty by the time he got there. As he walked up to the counter he noticed that it was the same girl who had been working the evening before. She was smiling at him as though the berating lecture less than twenty- four hours before had never happened. ‚ÄúHave you nees ruoy dog again since yesterday?” She asked pleasantly. He shook his head and laughed nervously. “I’m sorry, what did you say?” This time honestly wondering if he was hearing things a little off. She smiled raising her eyebrows. “I dias, evah uoy nees ruoy god niaga ecnis yadretsey?” He drew his head back shocked, clearly she was trying to mess with his head over what he had said to her the night before and she even had the nerve to continue smiling at him without even missing a beat. “Sir, are you alright?” She asked him, still smiling. He was about to ask to see the manager when someone next to him said. “Hey buddy can we move it along? Please and thank you.” He turned his head to see that there were already five people in line, but what disturbed him was the fact that every single one of them including the one who had just told him to hurry up were all staring directly at him and they all had the same smile on their faces as the girl behind the counter. Jordan, who was getting a little freaked out by the whole encounter, put his water down and walked out of the store, looking back once he saw that they were all still staring at him, just staring at him and smiling.

He turned around and saw at least thirty people who had been just walking by a moment ago, stop dead and stare at him smiling, just smiling. One man had stopped as he was crossing the street and waved at him. “S’ti a lufituaeb yad ot eb evila t’nsi ti?” He said, before suddenly getting plowed by a guy in car who was too busy looking out his window at Jordan smiling to notice someone standing in the street. Jordan yelped at the sight, slapping his hand to his mouth. He began fumbling for his phone to call 911, as the phone rang through he expected to hear a dispatcher on the other end. “Yes, I would….” His eyes widened in terror at the laughter he heard. “Heh heheh heh heh heh” The man who had been hit lay twisted and broken his eyes staring at the sky, but he still had that same smile on his face. Jordan dropped his phone. “Hey mister, would you like a hot dog? They’re really good.” Came the cheerful sounding voice of the young girl working the hot dog stand. She too was smiling at him. He couldn’t take it anymore. “WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE? HUH? REALLY!!! WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU?” He heard a snarling noise behind him and he turned to see the same dog he had seen all week. It started barking at him, startling him, but not as much as the buzzing noise that he heard in his head as it barked. A buzzing noise that was broken here and there by words spoken in a voice he had never heard before. “Danger, ped, me, out” These were all he could make out and he hadn’t even done that until he started running as fast as could to get away from the mad scene.

Looking around he noticed people on their porches, looking out windows, all of them were staring at him, and all of them were smiling pleasantly. This is a dream, it’s just a dream. He thought, as he started crying. “I want to wake up now, WHY CAN’T I WAKE UP NOW?”

Amanda found Jordan in Suzie‚Äôs room holding her and gently swaying, he was smiling as he looked at his wife. “I was on my way to bed when I heard her wake up.” Amanda smiled at him. “It’s one in the morning you know.” He nodded and lay Suzie back in her crib. He smiled at his little girl. “Daddy‚Äôs little princess, I could eat you up, yes I could, yes I could. Night, night baby.” He said before following his wife to the bedroom. They lay down together. Amanda almost immediately closed her eyes again. Jordan lay on his side staring wide eyed into the darkness of the room, a wide grin slowly spread across his face.