Another Sneak Peek at Voyage for the Sundered Crown

 Book 4 in the Sundered Crown Saga will be released on December 30th so I thought I’d share another sneaky peek at the book. This scene takes place early on in the book and introduces a new monster; The Devourer.

Enjoy!


Suddenly, one of the sandbanks exploded outwards and a monster the likes he’d never seen before came screeching from it. It was like a giant worm covered in thick bony armoured plates and vicious razor-sharp spikes. The head was nothing but a cavernous maw of deadly snapping teeth. The Rider cried out, only just guiding the Whale out of the reach of the Devourer. With a thunderous boom, the Devourer crashed back down beneath the dunes sending clouds of sand flying in all directions. The whale sped on through the dunes, the Devourer hot on its heels. Luxon glanced over his shoulder and instantly regretted doing so. All he could see, and gaining quickly was that cavernous teeth filled mouth. Ferran too was looking over his shoulder, but unlike himself, there was no fear on his face, instead, his brow was knotted in concentration. The master monster hunter was studying every detail of the creature, analyzing it for any visible weakness. The Rider spurred the Whale to veer sharply to the right causing the less nimble Devourer to speed on past. It let out a frustrated screech before arching around in an attempt to re-engage its prey. Luxon pushed himself up in his seat, his arms trembling against the forces trying to pin him down. Ahead was a rocky outcropping. The Devourer couldn’t travel through the stone.

 “Head toward the outcropping!” he shouted to the panicking rider.

With a crack of the rod, the Whale veered to the right and sped toward the rocks.

 “Get ready to jump!” Luxon shouted. He followed words with action and unsnapped the harness holding him into place. Ferran likewise detached himself. It was hard to move as the speed of the Sand Whale threatened to pin them into their seats. Luxon narrowed his eyes and channelled his magic to create a shield that enveloped him, Ferran and the rider. The G-forces immediately eased allowing them to move more freely. He grabbed the rider’s hand and Ferran gripped onto his cloak tightly. The outcropping approached and Luxon jumped. With masterful skill, he cast a levitation spell that launched them high into the air and off the terrified Whale’s back. They floated across the sand and onto the high rocky cliff. A solitary dead tree stood on the peak to offer some much-needed shelter from the blazing hot sun. Once they were safely on the rock the Whale dived beneath the sand desperate to escape the monster. Strangely, the Devourer allowed the Whale to go, its attention fixed on them.

 “I can’t be the only who thinks it strange that such a beast would be more interested in us than such a large potential meal,” Ferran remarked.

 Luxon crouched and watched the Devourer as it circled the outcropping. In its huge armoured head was a solitary red eye that was fixed on them. He closed his eyes and focused on the monster. There was a familiar presence emanating from it, one that he’d hoped they would not encounter so far from Delfinnia.

 “N’Gist magic,” he muttered. There was no mistaking it. The gnashing monster below was one made from the darkest sorcery.

 A shout came from below. Sir Beric and the other Bannerlords had arrived. Hastily they disembarked their Sand Whale and hurried toward the rocks. To Luxon’s surprise, the Devourer ignored them.

 “Er, it really seems to like you, Luxon,” Ferran said.

The Bannerlords clambered up the outcropping and joined them at the top.

 “There’s the hideous beast,” wheezed Beric. Despite the desert heat he and his companions were wearing their plate armour. On their backs in packs was an array of weaponry.

 The Devourer’s red eye stared unblinking at the outcropping it’s body eerily still.

 “I trust it didn’t do this when you first encountered it?” Ferran asked Beric.

 “No. When we faced it the beast attacked without mercy. It ate our horses first and then two of our squires. The poor sots didn’t stand a chance. Ah well-”

Beric said as he took a spear from one of his comrades “it’s still as a rock now. Let’s kill this thing.”

His squire handed him a spear. Creeping to the edge of the outcropping he drew back his arm and hurled the weapon with all his might. Just as the spear looked as though it would strike its intended target, the eye snapped shut. The spear struck armoured shell to spin wildly and harmlessly off its surface. Beric swore loudly.

 The eye opened again, it stared at Luxon.

“What’s up with this thing?” Beric grumbled taking another spear from his comrades. The four Bannerlords stepped to the edge and all hurled their spears. Again, the weapons bounced off its armoured shell.

 “Let me try something,” Ferran said as he conjured a fireball into existence. With a flick of the wrist, the magical projectile shot downwards to strike the Devourer. The flame engulfed the monster but instead of it retreating in pain as expected it began to vibrate.

 To their surprise, the creature absorbed the flames and with a sickening crack, the shell split and it began to grow in height. It grew so high that now it’s snapping jaws were just a few feet from the top of the outcropping.


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The Cover for Voyage for the Sundered Crown

It’s done! Check out the awesome new cover for Voyage for the Sundered Crown: Book 4 in the Sundered Crown Saga. Pre-order now and get it for just 0.99p/c on release day. Get from Amazon – mybook.to/VFTSC and other retailers – https://books2read.com/u/b5ZJJ6 Here’s the description –

The Kingdom of Delfinnia has fallen, but hope remains.
Sent on a daring voyage to seek out allies from across the sea, the wizard, Luxon Edioz and his companions rediscover the continent of Tulin. A land that is full of dangers, magic, and adventure.
There they will find new allies, new wonders, and new enemies. As Danon’s conquest draws closer to completion, Luxon must use all of his wits and powers to unite the peoples of Tulin and convince them to help him save his homeland.
It will be a voyage that will test him to his limits and one that will decide the fate of all.

Pre-order your copy today!

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A Sneak Peek at The Temple of Arrival (Empowered Ones Book Two)

Hi everyone, I thought I’d share some of book two in the Empowered Ones series; The Temple of Arrival. I hope you enjoy it and if you haven’t already please sign up to the newsletter.


 

The Asylum

The monotonous tapping of water striking stone was comforting to Skit. So too, was the constant flickering of the torch ensconced into the slimy stone wall of the cell that had been his home for the past two decades. He gazed through half-open eyes at the iron grate acting as the door to his cell. The howls, yelps and whimpers of his fellow inmates, now that was something that still scared him. It was the sound of madness and insanity; it was the sound made by the Broken. It was constant, and in those first months sleeping had been difficult, but the saying that a man can get used to anything over time had proven true.

He clenched his jaw as he breathed in the damp acrid air. His back was moist with sweat, and his lice filled tunic covered his emaciated body. The cell was small, containing a pile of straw that acted as his bed, the flickering torch that was his only source of heat as well as light and a small dripping pipe that provided him with water.

The sound of iron grating on stone caused him to sit a little straighter. It was very rare that anything different happened to break the tedium of his self-inflicted imprisonment. He only ever saw the caretakers once every few months when they came through and dropped off food. The yelling and cries of the other inmates grew louder and louder until it grew to an almost deafening pitch. Approaching footsteps came from the darkness of the corridor outside the cell until a shadowy figure appeared in front of Skit’s cell door.

Skit’s ruined eyes could just make out a silhouette standing in the flicker of his torch.

“Who’s there?” he asked, his voice barely louder than a strained whisper. When was the last time he had spoken out loud? He couldn’t recall.

“An old friend,” came the reply. Skit’s eyes widened at the voice. Fear twisted in his belly.

“No. Not you. You’re no friend of mine. You’re the reason I’m in here.”

The figure stepped closer revealing himself.

It was who he had feared most. Vavius.

“Now don’t be like that Skit. We were friends back in the day. Fighting side by side against the Supreme and the Imperium. We were good at it too.”

Skit waved a skinny arm dismissively.

“We were fighting the good fight until I learnt the truth about you and what you did. I wonder if during all this time the others ever figured it out?”

Vavius crossed his arms, his blue cloak looking black in the dimness of the Asylum.

“To answer your question, they never did. Although I’m sure, they know some of the truth now. And it doesn’t matter. I’m this close to it Skit; I have the map.”

Skit looked away and spat in disgust.

“Congratulations,’ he replied his tone dripping with sarcasm. ‘Who did you betray for it? Tarv? Yin? Or perhaps Cleo?”

Vavius chuckled humourlessly.

“Two of those three are dead. I won’t tell you which. I’ll let it haunt your dreams while you cower in this hell. Why choose to hide here? Of all places.”

Skit shook his head in despair at the words. How many more would die for this man’s lust for power?

“I hide here because I know it disgusts you. It represents the worst of us. I’m just surprised it took you this long to find me.”

Vavius gripped one of the cell doors iron bars and placed his face to the cool metal.

“You know why I’m here. I need your help. I need you to read the map. I tried to make sense of it myself, but it’s written in ancient Aeranyth. There’s only one man I know who could read such a language, and that’s you Skit,” Vavius explained taking a scroll from the pocket sewn into his cloak. He pulled the string, unfurled it and pressed the parchment to the bars.

Skit squinted at it for a few moments and chuckled.

“I cannot read it,’ he said shaking his head. “You’ve wasted your time coming here.”

“You’re lying. I know you can read ancient Aeranyth,” Vavius snapped.

He  channeled his Anger. His limbs grew, as the emotion acted as a conduit to the Power. With ease, he ripped the iron door from its hinges and tossed it casually down the corridor. The crash of its impact set off the Asylum’s inmates, their howls of madness rising until that was all that could be heard. He stepped into the cell and forcefully placed a gloved hand to Skit’s forehead. He closed his eyes.

Skit screamed, but the agonized sound was lost in the howls of the damned.

“So, you need a cypher to read it,” Vavius muttered as he tore his way through Skit’s mind. His eyes snapped open as he learned where to obtain one.

“The Venerable Chamber archives,” he said, before lifting the now unconscious Skit over his shoulder and departing the Asylum.

 

***

*The above is a rough draft and is subject to change.


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Books header

The First Fear Cover Reveal and Pre-Order Special

Hello, so here it is a project that I’ve been working on for the past two years. If you pre-order before its release in June you can get it for a lower price of just 1.99.
I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did writing it and here’s a shout for the excellent cover artist Reza Afshar. Check out his other work at – https://artofreza.deviantart.com/ 

Pre-order at: mybook.to/FirstFear

The Supreme rules the world.

For centuries the Supreme has reigned with an iron fist. The people are slaves to her whim and at the mercy of her followers who revere her as their goddess. Using a supernatural ability, known as the ‘Power’ she is able to channel emotions and convert them into superhuman abilities.

Some Resist.

Not all live their lives in servitude. A few rare people also possess the Power and try to fight. These Empowered Ones are hunted mercilessly by the Supreme and her servants, for she knows the threat they pose to her will. None has dared to challenge her outright. That is until now.

Elian, a young boy living at the edge of the Imperium discovers he too possesses the Power with devastating consequences for both himself and the girl he loves. On the run, they encounter a ragtag band of resistance fighters called the Liberators. Among their ranks are others with the gift and their leader Vavius who believes that the key to overthrowing the Supreme lies in the ruins of the ravaged lands of the once mighty Kingdom of Aeranyth.

Pursued and hunted for their gifts by the sinister First Fear and the Hollowed, the world’s fate rests in the hands of the Empowered Ones.

The First Fear Cover Reveal

Hi everyone, as I’m getting close to completing the First Fear I thought I’d share with you the planned book cover and synopsis. Let me know your thoughts in the comments or via social media. As to when you’ll be able to read the book, well I’m aiming to submit it to a publisher (a first for me!), but failing that I’m aiming for a March release.

FF3

A new epic fantasy saga begins!

The Supreme rules the world.

For centuries she has reigned with an iron fist. The people are slaves to her whim and at the mercy of her followers who revere her as their goddess. Using a supernatural ability, known as the ‘Power’ she is able to channel emotions and convert them into superhuman abilities.

Some Resist.

Not all live their lives in servitude. A few rare people also possess the Power and try to fight. These Empowered Ones are hunted mercilessly by the Supreme and her servants, for she knows the threat they pose to her will. None has dared to challenge her outright. That is until now.

Elian, a young man living at the edge of the Imperium discovers he too possesses the Power with devastating consequences for both himself and the people he loves. On the run, they encounter a ragtag band of resistance fighters called the Liberators. Among their ranks are others with the Gift and their leader Vavius who believes that the key to overthrowing the Supreme lies in the ruins of the ravaged lands of the once mighty Kingdom of Aeranyth.

Pursued and hunted for their gifts by the sinister First Fear, the world’s fate rests in the hands of the Empowered Ones.

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Big Announcement

Hi folks,

Today I am announcing that Heir to the Sundered Crown is getting the audio book treatment. I’m working with the very talented Joseph Tweedale to bring the Sundered Crown Saga to Audible. Listen to a sample below –

Keep your eyes peeled for more announcements via my social media channels over the coming weeks. The release date is scheduled for October.

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The First Fear – New Book Announcement

 

Hi everybody, so as I’ve said in a few previous posts I have been planning and working on a new fantasy story. Don’t worry, work on Quest for the Sundered Crown is still ongoing (albeit slowly). As work on this new work in progress has been proceeding ahead at a quick pace I thought that I would announce it officially today!

What is it?

The new book is titled: The First Fear, here’s the synopsis (very likely to change as this is very much a work in progress).

A new epic fantasy saga begins!

The Supreme rules the world.

For centuries the Supreme has reigned with an iron fist. The people are slaves to her whim and at the mercy of her followers who revere her as their goddess. Using a supernatural ability, known as the ‘Power’ she is able to channel emotions and convert them into superhuman abilities.

Some Resist.

Not all live their lives in servitude. A few rare people also possess the Power and try to fight. These Empowered Ones are hunted mercilessly by the Supreme and her servants, for she knows the threat they pose to her will. None has dared to challenge her outright. That is until now.

Elian, a young boy living at the edge of the Imperium discovers he too possesses the Power with devastating consequences for both himself and the girl he loves. On the run, they encounter a ragtag band of resistance fighters called the Liberators. Among their ranks are others with the gift and their leader Vavius who believes that the key to overthrowing the Supreme lies in the ruins of the ravaged lands of the once mighty Kingdom of Aeranyth.

Pursued and hunted for their gifts by the sinister Hollowed, the world’s fate rests in the hands of the Empowered Ones.

Can I read it?

To help build interest in the story I have decided to post the first draft on Wattpad. You can read the first part here.

Is that the final cover?

That is still to be decided. It will depend on the feedback I get from you guys. I have a few other designs that I quite like, so I may put them to a popular vote when the book is closer to completion.

I’ll be working on this story for this years NanoWriMo!

Please check it out on Wattpad and if you like it give me some feedback and vote!

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The Nightblade is done!

Hi everyone, just letting you know that my next fantasy novel, The Nightblade is finished. I have spent over a year writing the story and I’m happy with the way it’s turned out.

The next step is, of course, the editing phase. My good author friend Rob May has agreed to assist with this and get it as polished as it can possibly be. You can read a very rough version of the story on Wattpad, (please bear in mind that the finished article has a completely different ending and a lot of extra scenes).

The release date will be sometime in October so stay tuned for updates!

Synopsis

When darkness rises, the Nightblade is never far behind.

It came from the forest. A creature not seen in the peaceful lands of Mid-lake for millennia.

A farmer disappears and strange sounds are heard in the nearby forest prompting Alther, an old man with a mysterious past to investigate. What he discovers could threaten not just Mid-lake but the Kingdom of Delfinnia as a whole.

The Nightblade is a tale of adventure, mystery and magic and casts light on the events leading up to the Sundered Crown Saga.

The epic Sundered Crown Saga is available on kindle and paperback now!
Heir to the Sundered Crown (Book 1) – http://a.co/cRiRqBL
War for the Sundered Crown (Book 2) – http://a.co/39JC6qc
Paperback editions –
Heir to the Sundered Crown http://amzn.to/1XDSxlg
War for the Sundered Crown http://amzn.to/1RiVFDs

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Terran Defenders – New cover art

Hi all, just thought I would do a little post on the new cover art Rob May has created for the Terran Defenders series. As you can see below the covers and text are now consistent of each other.

TDG

TD

Don’t forget to pre-order Terran Defenders! It will be available to buy on Kindle August 12th.

Pre-order links:

USA- https://amzn.com/B01IPY5SW2

UK – http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01IPY5SW2

Canada – http://www.amazon.ca/dp/B01IPY5SW2

Australia – http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B01IPY5SW2

Also available to pre-orderin in France, Germany, Japan, India, Spain, Brazil and Mexico

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Terran Defenders Sneak Peak

With the release of Terran Defenders rapidly approaching I thought I would give you all a sneak peak of the book. I hope you enjoy it! To pre-order, the book click here.

***

The small salvage ship fired its retro engines creating another bright dot of light in the vast ocean of stars in the depths of space.

Tumbling and rolling before the  ship was the desolate hull of the legendary SS Regent. Debris and flotsam spiralled away from the wrecked vessel causing the salvage ship’s captain to reinforce the shields. Tiny sparks like miniature solar flares brightened the cockpit as the shields disintegrated the potentially lethal detritus.

Captain Finley Adams scowled at the sad scene of the once mighty ship crumbling apart before his very eyes. With a skill that comes from years of experience, he brought the salvage ship in closer and activated the powerful searchlights that were sat above the cockpit.

“Are you seeing this captain?”

Over the intercom came the voice of his engineer and wife Carolyn Adams.

The married couple had been salvagers for over ten years making a good income from their dangerous work. This case, however, had been a complete surprise. They initially hadn’t had any intention of scouting the Ro system. Their contract had told them to search the much more profitable region of the Eagan system, another twenty light years away from their current location. No large scale battles had ever taken place in Ro, according to the charts Ro was a quiet backwater of a system, not having much in the way of resources and was home to only four gaseous planets.

Finley took the smouldering Chindin cigar from his mouth and blew a thick cloud of bluish smoke before replying; “Yeah, I see it. Looks like something ripped a chunk out of the port side of the hull. Jesus, it looks like an Asteroid strike to me.”

He tapped a series of buttons on the control console bringing up the external scanner. On the small screen to his right, he saw a 3d model of the wrecked Regent materialise as the ship’s computer began its spectral analysis. The powerful scanners blasted out radiation ranging from gamma rays right through to X-rays to get a complete readout.

“Any life signs?” enquired his wife over the comm.

Finn snorted at the silly question.

“No darling, if this is the Regent the poor sods on board would have died 200 years ago.”

The scanner pinged indicating the initial scan was complete.

“What the hell?” Finley exclaimed as the image of the Regent zoomed in showing the ragged hole that was threatening to tear the stricken hulk apart.

Impossibly the hole came into focus showing the sheared metal facing outwards, as though something had ripped out of the ship rather than struck it.

“Maybe the asteroid came through from the other side?” offered Carolyn as she joined her husband in the cockpit.

Her long brunette hair was tied up in a bun and her ragged features were as usual covered in grease and oil stains. She wore the same blue overalls as her overweight husband, each bearing the sign of the Space Exploration Ministry.

“I don’t think so, according to the scan only this side of the ship has been ruptured.” Finley leant forward and brought up another screen showing the magnified X-ray image of the stricken ship.

“Fuel leak, munitions explosion?” Carolyn offered again.

Fin smiled at his wife’s persistent use of logic. Fin, however, couldn’t shake the feeling that something wasn’t right. After so many years scouring battlefields, wrecked colonies and ancient scrap yards he’d never had his ship brought out of FTL right on top of a wreck, and the Regent was as famous as they came. She had once been the colonies most prized vessel but had mysteriously vanished on her maiden voyage two hundred years ago.

“Well honey, there’s only one way to know for sure” Said Fin as he prized himself out his chair setting the smaller ship to begin docking procedures.

*

The airlock hissed as it slid open to reveal the dark opening of the Regent’s docking bay. Fin and Carolyn were now wearing their bulky zero G-suits. Neither of them enjoyed travelling in them, the suits made them feel claustrophobic and clumsy. Each of their breaths made a sharp hissing noise through their internal comms making Fin more and more uneasy as they slowly made their way across the empty bay.

Scattered about the place and floating lazily in the vacuum were crates and tools. Carolyn caught one of the papers and held it up to her torch light.

“It’s dated August 2145. That was two hundred years ago,” she said in surprise.

Fin nodded, the dates fitted.

“That confirms it then. This is definitely THE SS Regent,” he replied as he too knelt awkwardly and picked up a page.

It was from an engineering manual for an ancient victor class of starfighter. He shook his head in wonder.

“This place should be in a museum. Imagine the finder’s fee were gonna get Fin!” Carolyn whooped.

Fin smiled, but that nagging feeling returned.

“Come on, let’s get to that hole. I want to know what happened here,” he said as he carefully moved to an access hatch at the far end of the bay.

The pair of salvagers made their way through the ship encountering nothing but eerily empty rooms.

“How come we’ve not seen any bodies Fin?” asked Carolyn nervously.

The emptiness of the place was starting to get to them both. It was strange not to encounter any dead crewmembers, those they could handle; it was a common thing for salvage crews to run into.

“Maybe they all got sucked out into space through that hole,” Fin offered, shrugging his shoulders. “I’m picking up some faint electrical anomalies.”

He glanced at his wrist scanner that displayed readouts of the interior of the ship. Another left turn and they would arrive at the damaged portion of the hull. Rounding the corner a vibration ran throughout the ship causing them both to stop dead in their tracks.

“Movement?” Fin wondered aloud.

He placed a thick-gloved hand onto the passageways wall and sure enough, he could feel a tremor running through the hull. His wrist scanner began to beep insistently, the speed increasing at a rapid pace. He quickly looked at the readouts.

“Holy hell, our ships engines are spooling up,” Fin cried in alarm.

He spun around and grabbed his wife’s hand pulling her after him as he rushed his way back to the scout ship. They ran as fast they could back towards the small craft. The wrist scanner was going crazy as the sensors detected that the ship was about to jump away at any second, stranding the salvagers on the dead Regent.

Desperately Fin jumped and kicked off from the access hatch they had gone through sending him flying through the vacuum of space. Within seconds, he reached the air lock and frantically removed his zero G-suit. Carolyn was screaming over the comm., screaming at him to hurry.

Fin was sweating, the perspiration was getting in his eyes and the sense of dread he felt was now of absolute terror. The airlock opened as he bounded through the ship towards the cockpits access ladder. All the while, he was swearing under his breath. The sound of the ships engines was deafening, at any moment the ship would jump ripping apart the wreck of the Regent and vaporising both of the scavengers. He forced his bulk awkwardly up the ladder and threw himself into the command seat. Urgently he brought up the console and with a cry of relief, he punched the engine override button, shutting them down. Fin collapsed back in his seat in utter relief, panting for breath and sweating profusely. After a few moments, he collected his thoughts and picked up the Comm.

“Carolyn. Honey, I did it, the ship’s secure. I don’t know what caused that. I’m gonna start a ship-wide diagnostic.”

No reply.

“Where is that damn woman? Carolyn, Carolyn can you hear me?” he asked in frustration and more than a little worry.

No reply.

Fin felt fear once more knot in his guts. He was just about to try again when a voice came over the comm.

“My god Fin, you got to take a look at this honey. I’m at the impact site.”

Fin frowned. It was Carolyn’s voice but it sounded distant almost ethereal. Cautiously he headed back to the airlock and once more donned his suit. Quickly he made his way back across the bay but not before disabling the scout ship’s engines with a computer override. Whatever had caused the mysterious engine start-up could happen again, he wasn’t prepared to take any chances.

He reached the point they had made it to before the incident and slowly rounded the corner. There before him was a scene of utter devastation. This was where the crew was, all five hundred of them. A cavernous space lay before him, the massive hole that led out into space on the far wall.

However, it was the rest of the walls that made Finlay vomit into his suit.

There, impaled on the walls was the ship’s crew, frozen in terror thanks to the vacuum of space.  Blood covered every surface, disembowelled corpses littered the floor and there standing in the middle of it all was Carolyn her back to her husband. Finley staggered towards her desperate to take them away from this nightmare. He grabbed her arm.

Slowly she turned to face him.

“Nooo!” Fin screamed as his wife stared at him. Except it was not his wife.

A sadistic grin adorned her face, her eyes were black slits and the skin was ripped and torn. He staggered backwards screaming. The thing that wore his wife’s suit reached for him, gripping his suit, and pushing him down to the ground with a superhuman strength. Fin struggled against the creature but it was too strong.

He screamed again as out of the corner of his eye he could see the corpses of the ship’s crew stirring, moving slowly towards him, arms outreached to drag him to their fate.  The last thing Finlay Adams heard was the scanner on his wrist beeping frantically. Someone or something had started up his ship…

***

Pre-order links:

USA- https://amzn.com/B01IPY5SW2

UK – http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01IPY5SW2

Canada – http://www.amazon.ca/dp/B01IPY5SW2

Australia – http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B01IPY5SW2

Also available to pre-orderin in France, Germany, Japan, India, Spain, Brazil and Mexico

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