Today I’m proud to announce the publication of a new anthology of speculative fiction, Darkness, by Twisted Fate Publishing. It comprises a mix of sci-fi, fantasy and horror tales by seven previously published authors, and includes two of mine.
The anthology is formally published on 10 October, but is available on Amazon to pre-order at £3.99 on Kindle or to buy now at £9.99 in paperback – via this link:
All profits will be donated to the mental health charity, Mind.
I’m particularly pleased that this anthology includes the first outing in print of a story from my (very) slow-burning sci-fi project. Regular readers of this blog will be aware that I’ve been working at this, off and on, for quite a while (see https://timwordsblog.wordpress.com/2019/03/17/a-first-taste/), in between other things.
So here, to celebrate – and hopefully whet your appetite, is a short extract from that story, Delving. Peiku and his friend Vahe are in a ruined city, searching for artefacts with the more experienced Ravakinu. But the Guardians are searching for them:
They all returned to the doorway, made visible by the pale moonlight beyond it. Vahe and Peiku felt their way along the wall to the corner and Ravakinu left, with the briefest of waves.
In the corner, with their backs against the cold damp wall, it was not only dark but completely silent. Time had passed quickly while they were making their way to the old city. Now Peiku found himself counting the seconds and minutes away.
“D’you think it’ll take him long to find somewhere?” he whispered.
“I hope not. I don’t like it here.”
“Me neither. I hope the Guardians don’t find him before he gets back.”
“I just hope they don’t find us.”
There was a tremor in Vahe’s voice that Peiku had never heard before. She had always seemed completely fearless. He reached out for her hand. She took it and squeezed like a drowning man clutching a lifeline.
After a while, Peiku could make out the sound of footsteps in the old street beyond the doorway. At first, he thought it was Ravakinu, but then there were voices – not the excited chatter that he had heard earlier, but deeper, more purposeful. His hand closed around Vahe’s like a vice.
“Guardians!” he whispered in her ear.
Sure enough, as the footsteps drew closer, he could begin to make out words.
“They came in this direction. I reckon they’ll be hiding out in one of these old buildings.”
The footsteps stopped. Peiku could see some kind of flickering light beyond the door – white, like that from Ravakinu’s artefact; not the yellow light of a burning torch. Then a strange bright circle appeared on the far wall of the ruined building and hung there for a moment like the disc of some weird moon. It began to sweep to and fro across the room. Peiku could see a booted foot in the doorway. He huddled into the wall, not daring even to breathe, and felt Vahe bury her head in his shoulder. Now the white disc was coming towards them!
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