Boundless Now Available as an Ebook

The flash fiction story Boundless is now available in ebook form.  This short work shows a glimpse into the sick world of a serial killer as he toys with and tortures a young girl. 

Boundless is book 3 of The Killers series.  It’s the first appearance of Gary Avellis, a sadistic serial killer who features prominently in the work-in-progress (WIP) Parts.  Although he doesn’t appear in it, his handiwork also appears in the WIP Bound, the sequel to Boundless.

Boundless is currently available on Smashwords.  It should be rolling out to the other stores soon, with the exception of Amazon.  Kindle users will need to read it online here or download the mobi from Smashwords… or wait until I have a collection that I can put up on Amazon.  I’ll update Boundless’ library entry with additional links when they become available.

Boundless

“Please.”47fiction-page-0

God, he loved it when they begged. It was so hot.

“You know, they say that people are smart, that humanity is boundlessly creative and intelligent. I would disagree. While there are certainly plenty of smart people out there, although few as brilliant as myself, most of the people you encounter are varying degrees of dumb. If there’s anything about humanity that’s boundless, it’s stupidity.”

“You don’t have to do this.”

“Let’s take you, for example.”

“I swear I won’t tell anyone,” the girl pleaded.

“Oh, will you SHUT UP!

The girl clamped her mouth closed, her teeth making an audible click as they came together, and shrunk away from Gary. Fresh tears spilled from her eyes.

“Now, as I was saying before I was so rudely interrupted, let’s take you, for example. I know that the cops on your campus keep putting out emails telling the student body not to be out alone after dark. Don’t you read them? And it should be common fucking sense to change up your routine. But in all the time I’ve been watching you, you never vary. I can time your schedule to within, I’d say, five minutes. Maybe ten if you’re running late. You take the same route. You visit the same coffee shop each morning on your way to class. You go to the same bar, and I can always count on you to show up at the Saturday-night Sigma parties and get wasted. And if you don’t sleep over, you walk home, usually alone.”

The girl’s lower lip was quivering. Her mascara had run, dark streaks down her face. Gary was getting awfully excited, but he held himself in check. He wanted to draw it out, enjoy it as much as he could. It would be over too soon even then.

“What rational, sane female approaches someone who looks like me asking for directions? In a panel van, no less? At night, when you’re alone and inebriated? I mean, who doesn’t have a smartphone these days, or a GPS? How can you be so stupid?”

Gary jabbed a finger into her forehead and rubbed it back and forth, moving her head with it. “You’re like lambs, so innocent, so naive, so unaware of the wolves lurking just out of sight, watching you, scenting you, just waiting for you to wander away from the flock.” He withdrew his finger and turned his back to her.

“Puh-puh-please let me go,” she blubbered.

“Puh-puh-puh-please,” he responded, mocking her. He turned back to face her.

“You want me to let you go?” He said the words slowly, as though speaking to a small, confused child.

The girl’s head bobbed up and down frantically.

Gary nodded back in a pantomime of agreement. “Maybe I should release you. Would you like that?”

The girl nodded even harder. Gary was amused and wondered if she might not break her own neck.

“You know what? I will release you; you’ve convinced me.” Her eyes looked so nakedly hopeful that he almost laughed. “I’ll release you from your banal existence, this vapid life that you lead, floating between classes and parties and home, like a bit of poplar fluff adrift on the breeze, oblivious to its surroundings, its destination, even the direction it’s heading. I will release you from your dim, meaningless future. And I will release the rest of humanity from your stupidity and the threat that you might reproduce, passing on your genetic garbage to future generations. Yes, I will release you. But first, we’ll have some fun.”

Gary smiled broadly. He reached into his back pocket and withdrew a long, well-worn handle. With a flick of his wrist, a straight razor swung out into view. It gleamed wickedly. The girl’s eyes, bugging out of her skull, locked onto it. He twisted it this way and that, throwing flashes of light into her eyes. She jerked against her restraints, pulling the twine tight into her wrists, causing the blood to start flowing there. Gary reached out and snatched a handful of hair, holding her head still.

He leaned in close to her. He could smell the alcohol and the terror rolling off of her in waves. “Now, let’s see about turning that frown upside down, shall we?” he whispered, bringing the edge of the blade up to her mouth. He caressed her lips with the cold metal. Then, with a savage grin, he began.

She screamed for a long time.

Pink Now Available as an Ebook

Yay for snow days!  It gave me the opportunity to finalize and upload Pink early.  As such:

The flash fiction story Pink is now available in ebook form.  It’s currently available on the Google Play store, on Scribd, and on Smashwords.  It should be rolling out to the other stores soon, with the exception of Amazon.  Kindle users will need to read it online here or download the mobi from Smashwords… or wait until I have a collection that I can put up on Amazon.  I’ll update Pink’s library entry with additional links when they become available.

Pink

#6, that was the tarnished brass number on the door. His lucky number. He pushed the room key into the battle-scarred lock and turned. It took a bit of jiggling, but the knob reluctantly gave in, and Fleming stepped inside the room, closing the door behind him.pink

He’d been in this room, or one of its countless siblings, many times before. It was a room where the insects skittered across the floor in the night, while bigger prey skittered in the walls. The hotel, or maybe it was a motel, was the sort of place where the blue collars brought their cheap prostitutes for a quick pump, where the front office didn’t ask for ID and took cash, where those who didn’t want to be found could spend a night with a roof over their heads. It smelled of semen and desperation, and it suited Fleming just fine.

He thumbed the deadbolt and leaned back against the door. He took a deep breath and then another. He was safe. Well, for the moment; he couldn’t linger. The gap under the door, an inch high if not two, let in a dull glow from the one working light in the parking lot. The light also slipped in through a crack in the curtains. Otherwise, the room was as dark as a tomb. Sadly, it was less quiet. Fleming could hear a television, much too loud for this time of night, blaring through the wall, as well as a rhythmic thumping, punctuated by moans and the well-practiced “oh, yeah’s” of a pro.

Fleming reached over and twitched the curtains the rest of the way closed. He clicked on the light switch and walked toward the bathroom. Here, the scent shifted to one of stale urine and old shit. He wrinkled his nose in distaste and turned on the exhaust fan. Standing in the middle of the dingy linoleum floor, he began shedding his clothes, dropping them into a pile at his feet. He winced as he eased out of his shirt. His right arm from the shoulder down ached, like he’d gone ten rounds for the heavyweight title. He dropped the shirt on top of the pile and toed off his socks, trying not to think about what his bare feet might now come in contact with. He reached into the tub and turned on the hot tap as high as it would go. Glancing at the threadbare towel and washcloth, the former of which had a disconcerting stain in the corner, he was glad he’d brought his own. From his overnight bag, he withdrew a towel and washcloth, cheap but new. The bag went on top of the toilet seat and the towels on the top of the bag. Turning the cold tap on just enough to keep from being scalded, he pulled the lever to engage the shower. It sputtered to life, and he stepped into the tub.

He stood under the spray, his head down and eyes closed, letting the water run over him. He laid his left arm against the shower wall (no way he could lift the right above chest level now) and rested his head against it. He was elated, still riding that high, but very soon exhaustion would begin to descend. Before that happened, he’d need to burn the clothes, washcloth and towel, too. He’d need to clean out the drain when he was done showering. He’d seen on TV where the cops could get into a drain trap and find all kinds of interesting bits and pieces. He didn’t intend for any of those to be his. He should still have 3, maybe 4 hours of darkness left. Plenty of time. So long as he kept moving.

He opened his eyes and pushed away from the wall. There was a red stripe on the tile where his arm had been. He rubbed at it with his hand but that only smeared it. That’s okay, he told himself. He had a spray bottle of bleach and several rags in his bag. He’d have to wipe down everything he’d touched and began to make a mental note of every surface his bare hands or feet had, or might have, come into contact with in the room. When he finished, this room’d probably be the cleanest it had been in years. Maybe decades.

With hands that trembled slightly, which he chalked up to leftover adrenalin working its way out of his system or maybe the exertion of his earlier activities, he lathered up the washcloth and began to scrub. The soapy water cascaded off him and swirled down the drain. It was pink.

Cross-posted from bdcrowell.com:

It took me awhile to get around to it, but I’ve finally started putting the books up on the Google Play store.  They’re not all up there, but I have titles from both BD Crowell and D Lee Warren up, and I’m working on the rest, updating the back matter as I go.  I’m updating the Library with links as they go live in the store.  Just in the short time they’ve been up, with no advertising or fanfare from my camp, Google has already moved several copies.  I’m excited and looking forward to what we’re going to accomplish together.
English: Google Logo officially released on Ma...
English: Google Logo officially released on May 2010 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In other news, Pink is back from beta reading and Boundless just went out for beta reading.  With any luck, I can get Pink finalized and published this weekend and maybe get Boundless out early next month.  I’m also making good progress on Bound and slow but steady progress on A Christmas Tale.  I’ve resumed work on Parts.  It’s been a challenging piece and isn’t coming easily, but I’m still plugging away at it and hope to see it through to completion one of these days.  I’ve limited myself to 4 active writing projects at a time so I don’t get spread too thinly but always have something in the pipe.  I’m trying to stick to 80% writing projects, 20% blog posts during my writing time.  And I work on illustrations whenever I can (which I plan to ramp up soon, but I’ll discuss that in another blog post).  You can always see where I’m at in the queue by visiting the Works in Progress (WIP) section of the Library.

That’s it for now.  I hope the rest of your winter isn’t too cold.

A Pair of Curious Problems

I turned 40 not long ago.  That fact alone seems rather surreal and not quite possible.  Statistically speaking then, I’m about halfway through this life.  True, I may not be quite at the halfway point.  In fact, if I turn out to be one of those bizarre cases, it could be that I’m only a third of the way through.  Or it could be that I’ve expended two-thirds or better of the time I’ve been given.  We never know.  But for the sake of this posting, let’s settle on half.

English: Stack of books in Gould's Book Arcade...

English: Stack of books in Gould's Book Arcade, Newtown, New South Wales (NSW), Australia. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In looking at my Goodreads to-be-read shelf, I see that I have over 700 books on there.  That does not include all the books I’d like to read or even all of the physical books that I have sitting on bookshelves, waiting for me to pick them up.  There was a time when I had to ponder what my next read would be, when I would work on one or two books at a time and had to have the physical book in front of me.  Now, I can read almost anywhere and typically have a half-dozen or so in progress at any one time.  I’ve become extremely picky about what I add to my shelf, only picking up unknown books by unknown authors (to me, at least) when they have at least 4.5 stars by double-digit or better reviewers.  Most of the time, I don’t even open my BookBub emails anymore, because I’ve come to realize that even if I stopped adding books today and only worked on my backlog, looking at my rate of reading (which has averaged 27 books a year over the past 3 years), there’s a good chance I don’t have enough years left to get through them all.  It’s a rather sad thought.  True, I could read faster than I do, but what would be the point in that?  I read for either the enjoyment, the knowledge, or both, and I tend to not enjoy it and not pick up as much when I speed-read.  Thus, I read at the speed at which I can enjoy and get the most from the experience.  That whole quality of life vs. quantity.  So, I have to accept that every time I pick up a book that it may be at the expense of getting through another in this lifetime.  And thus, it had better be a good read.  I don’t give books nearly the chance that I once did because life is too short to waste on a mediocre or poor reading experience.

Then there is the other side of the coin to books:  the writing.  I’ve heard of writers bemoan the process, worried that the muse will give out and they’ll be left with nothing to write.  I don’t understand that.  I have the opposite problem (knock on wood that I’m not jinxing myself).  I have scores of story ideas written down, even more that I’ve forgotten (although I figure that if they’re worth telling, they’ll come back to me).  I work on the ones that gnaw the worst at my brain and won’t let me be and for which I think I’m up to the challenge*.  Unless senility claims me early, I can’t imagine running out of stories to tell.  Although, granted, I’m not able to turn them out very quickly, so maybe that’s a problem for the full-time writers.  Or the unimaginative.  But again, as with the reading, I don’t expect to live long enough to tell all the tales that are waiting for me to tell.  And that’s just as sad to me as the fact I’ll not be able to read all that I’d like.  Perhaps more so, I’ve not yet decided.

Am I the only one who thinks this?  Let me know.  Thanks for reading.

 

*Yes, Three, I know that you (and your sequel) keep gnawing at me, but I don’t think I’m up the challenge of your second draft yet.  Come talk to me after Parts is done.

All D Lee Stories FREE in October!

Ah, it’s Fall.  The weather’s cooler, the leaves are changing colors, there’s sweet and tart apple cider about, and soon the kiddies will be dressing up as princesses and… wait a minute, that doesn’t sound like D Lee.  Let me try again…

There’s a chill in the air.  The leaves on the trees are dying, turning brown.  They’ll soon release their grip, leaving stark branches outlined against a steely gray, uncaring sky.  The chill worms its way into the hearts of the people who know that the Winter will soon be here, all of nature dying for another year, and forcing contemplation of our own short existences.  But before old man Winter descends on the lands, we must first go through the time of the reaping, All Hallow’s Eve, when all manner of creatures – spirits and demons – get to roam the land and go bump in the night.  The wise will huddle close to the fire, their shutters and curtains drawn, lest they look out their window to find something looking back.

Might as well cuddle up with a good book.  And if you can’t find one of those.. well heck, have one of mine.  Winking smile  All the D Lee stories are free this month*, in celebration of my favorite holiday, Halloween.  The price has already been set at Smashwords and should trickle out to the other retailers they distribute to over the next few days.  The only pesky ones may be Amazon and Barnes & Noble.  I can’t set it as free there, so we just have to wait on a price match.

How could you ever thank me?  Your readership is enough.  If you really feel compelled to do more, leave a review or a comment or even send me an email.  I’d love to hear from you.  And if you liked it, tell a friend.  And if you didn’t, lie to an enemy so they waste their time reading it, too.  Bwa ha ha!  And have a happy Halloween!

 

*To be fair, all of the currently released ones except Repetition have been free, but this month you can get Repetition free, too.