Welcome back, daring readers…pull up a chair and don’t mind the cobwebs…or the thunderously loud organ music. They give the place so much more atmosphere, don’t you think? Now then…dim the lights in the room, huddle close, and be prepared to peruse some bone-chilling blurbs.
Our first title comes from the twisted mind of Tom Olbert. It is a tale about corporate drudgery and companies with dark secrets. It is a spine-tingling story of alien worlds and career choices that maybe aren’t so tasteful. We’ve all been there, but what if these things happen in a dark future with even darker possibilities? That, my faint-hearted friends…that, is Hellshift.
Preston Chandler is a lonely, overworked corporate office drone on the worst
assignment of his life. In the dark future world of Preston’s time, low-level
clerks like himself must serve a 1-year shift on a corporate mining colony on a
hellish alien planet whose indigenous population has been wiped out by nuclear
He isn’t safe even in his corporate offices, as dismembered human bodies begin
turning up. Preston fears he is losing his mind. He desperately wants to return
to Earth, but is trapped in an escalating nightmare. Computerized
psych-evaluation technology probes his mind with dehumanizing invasiveness.
Preston finally completes his assignment and is looking forward to returning
home to Earth at last. But will his Hellshift ever end?
Do you dare to face this strange new world? Do you dare to venture in? Well, for those brave enough to do so, Tom has graciously provided an eerie excerpt. So gather round close, find a hand to cling to, and let’s all read together:
Something was moving in the shadows, in the sputtering light of the dark tunnel.
Preston Chandler’s flabby chest was tight, his breathing shallow. He was afraid
to move. It stirred just outside the darkened subway car, the guttural breathing
and scraping claws of the thing outside inching their way up his spine. Preston
had dozed off on the subway on his way home from another exhausting double shift
at the office. At first, he’d thought it another bad dream. The hair prickling
on the back of his neck, he’d dug his fingernails deep into his forearm, the
pain infuriatingly real. His eyes swept the darkened car. Only intermittent
power remained in the tube station outside. “Hello?” he called out in a
strangled throat, hoping desperately he wasn’t alone. His eyes froze, his jaw
dropping in a silent scream. In the brief illumination of an electrical flash,
he saw disemboweled human cadavers.
Their flesh was shredded like cheesecloth, their, disembodied organs strewn
across the inside of the car like butcher’s scraps. The walls and seats were
splattered with gore.
The thing outside shrieked and howled, throwing its lengthy bulk against the
side of the train. The car rattled and shook. He gasped, his blood running
like ice water through his veins. He saw it, moving with a hideous rapidity,
crawling across the windows, its many clawed extensions wriggling and scraping
across the glass like a gigantic centipede. Preston heard it…felt it as it
clambered onto the roof. He screamed as it began tearing its way through,
curved claws bending back the metal, long lashing tentacles snaking their way
down in the flickering electric light.
In a burst of adrenalin, Preston threw himself against the nearest door, clawing
and pounding and screaming for help. Astonishingly, the door moved, a random
electric relay apparently kicking in. He ran in darkness and flickering light,
up dark flights of stairs, screaming in blind madness. There was nothing before
him but darkness and blue flashes and blood and dismembered bodies hanging from
torn, sputtering wires.
Had he finally arrived in hell?
Do you still crave more? Perhaps you think such unnerving obstacles can be overcome. Perhaps you wonder what this strange future involves, or what the hellshift really is…then if you have the need to read, you can find the book HERE