Daily Archives: February 14, 2016

How the West Was Zombed – Chapter 34

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Inside his mind, Blythe was in Hell, the realm of the damned.

He stood in a field of blank, black space that went on forever in every direction. Abruptly, a ringed wall of fire shot up into the air. It too went on to infinity.

In the center, an alluring blonde woman, all in white appeared. Her hair was up. Her right cheek had a subtle beauty mark. She held out her hand. Blythe kissed it.

“Lady Blackwood,” Blythe said.

“Counselor.”

As vice-chairwoman of the Legion Corporation’s board of directors, Lady Blackwood was an exceptionally powerful vampire. She spoke with a Scottish brogue, reminiscent of her highland ancestors long past.

Blythe looked around. “Perhaps a change of scenery? Something more fitting for your beauty.”

“Flattery will get you nowhere,” Lady Blackwood said. In the blink of an eye, the pair found themselves strolling across the beach of a tropical island. The water was a clean, sparkling blue. Palm trees could be seen further inland, along with the occasional parrot fluttering about.

Gentleman that he was, Blythe offer the Lady his arm. She took it.

“To what do I owe this honor?” Blythe asked.

“The Chairman is pleased with the invasion thus far,” Lady Blackwood said. “The remaining board members, however, demand assurances that the next phase will proceed as planned.”

“My lady,” Blythe said, “The New World burns from Colorado to the edge of Missouri. Our lycan friends have proved to be remarkable herdsmen, pushing the undead horde across country in a wide swath of destruction.”

“Their attacks are disorganized,” the Lady noted.

“Yet effective,” Blythe said. “When I am within range of them, our army will be unmatched.”

“And are they OUR army?” Lady Blackwood inquired.

“An offensive insinuation,” Blythe said.
“But one that has been made,” Lady Blackwood said. “Zebulon has been on a tear about how convenient it was that only your blood was disseminated en masse and therefore the only one who can control this army is you.”

“Control of the army requires one to be on the front lines of battle, my lady” Blythe said. “That was a task I don’t recall Zebulon raising his hand for.”

“Of that I am aware,” Lady Blackwood said. “And I am also aware of complications.”

“Complications?” Blythe asked.

“Joseph Freeman,” the Lady said. “And Rainier Slade. What is your counsel?”

“That each should be dispatched immediately without hesitation. What is the board’s will?”

“You won’t like it,” the Lady said.

“And yet as I’ve been so often told, that does not matter,” Blythe said.

“They wish to see Freeman suffer still,” the Lady advised. “Find his son and make it so.”

“I must protest,” Blythe said. “Had Freeman been killed outright a decade ago, he’d be of no concern now.  The board is making the same mistake twice.”

“I agree,” Lady Blackwood said. “But my vote is but one and the board is not without reason. Our alliance with the lycans has always been tenuous. They do not fear death but their weakness has always been that they wish to live amongst men, to have families of their own and to make it known we can reach them there is to ensure their continued submission.”

“And Slade?” Blythe asked.

“He is resistant to glamour,” Lady Blackwood said. “You know how rare that is.”

“Only a handful have ever been discovered,” Blythe said. “He is the first that has ever resisted me to be sure.”

“The board wishes you to rally him to our cause,” the Lady said. “If you can, he would be a tremendous asset.”

“Genghis Khan was resistant to glamour,” Blythe said. “As was Napoleon. Slade is nothing like those men.”

“But he was so cold that you found no hope within him to exploit,” the Lady said.

“There’s a lack of exploitability and then there’s sheer incorruptibility, my lady,” Blythe said. “The difference is subtle but it is there.”

“All we do is to bring about the end of days,” Lady Blackwood said. “To make the living conditions of the world so unbearable…”

“…that one leader emerges, convinces the humans that he is their only hope for survival and then once all power is trusted within him, he betrays humanity and becomes its undoing, making way for the Chairman to step into the world of men. Trust me, my lady, Slade is not that man.”

“How can you be so sure?” the Lady asked.

“He loves,” Blythe answered. “Two women, in fact.”

“The antichrist has lived and died many times before,” Lady Blackwood said. “Never being placed within the right set of circumstances to pursue his true calling.”

“The board proposes an Antichrist can be made?” Blythe asked.

“Perhaps you can use his loves against him,” the Lady said.

“My lady,” Blythe said. “Any other time I’d recognize that as a delightfully wicked notion but let us focus first on our conquest of America.  We’ll then spread our reign to the rest of the world and once humanity is under subjugation, we can spend all of eternity on a search for…he who the Chairman waits for.”

“A sentiment I already expressed,” Lady Blackwood said. “It was rebuffed.”

Blythe released Lady Blackwood’s arm and faced her. “We are teetering on the edge of victory and these imbeciles would have me play the role of a cat, batting Freeman and Slade about like playthings instead of crushing them immediately.”

“Bite your tongue, counselor,” Lady Blackwood said.

“I will not,” Blythe said. “I grow weary of bureaucratic machinations thrust upon me by fools who haven’t lifted a finger to help the cause in centuries!”

Lady Blackwood’s eyes turned yellow, her otherwise pleasant voice grew darker, colder. “Bite…your…tongue.”

Blythe knew she meant business. He took a seat on the sand. Lady Blackwood followed, her demeanor returning to normal. The duo sat on the beach for a moment, staring off at the ocean. Under normal circumstances, a man and a woman in their Sunday best lounging on the ground would have appeared odd, but then again, the sand wasn’t real.

“That comment wasn’t directed at you, Colleen,” Blythe said.

“I know,” the Lady replied.

“Of all the board members I’ve always felt you and I see things as they are,” Blythe said.

“Whereas the others see things as they’d like them to be, casting threats aside to the wind and letting others pick up the pieces,” the Lady said. “But you must know your place, Henry, and insulting the board is a surefire way to forfeit your existence.”

“Indeed,” Blythe said.

“You give me pause for concern when you speak so treacherously,” Lady Blackwood said. “Our last associate who did so sold us out to the greatest vampire hunter of them all.”

Blythe took the Lady’s hand and held it. “A situation you remedied with your cunning as I recall. Hickok has become quite an asset, has he not?”

“He has,” Lady Blackwood said. “But his former colleagues Ms. Canary and Mr. Utter nip at my heels at every turn. You whine about Slade and Freeman as if you’re the only one with problems, Henry.”

“My apologies,” Blythe said.

“The silver mining boom in Tombstone is troubling,” the Lady said.

“I have full confidence in associates Ringo and Brocious,” Blythe said.

“I don’t share it,” Lady Blackwood said. “Nor do I believe rumors that Wyatt Earp has retired.”

“Certainly the board doesn’t expect me to toy with him?” Blythe said.

“No,” Lady Blackwood said. “Get a bullet in his head the sooner the better.”

“Hickok’s meddlesome companions,” Blythe said. “Slade and Freeman finding their way to Highwater. The discovery of vast silver deposits…”

“I know where you’re going with this,” the Lady said. “But the board will not hear conspiracy theories. God has given up on humanity long ago as far as they’re concerned.”

“Humans have long sat around waiting for the man upstairs to send them some kind of protector,” Blythe said. “They’re mind numbingly oblivious to the fact that their Creator put them on Earth to serve that very role.”

“He manipulates situations to put the best humans where they need to be,” Lady Blackwood said. “The wise ones stand and fight. The rest wait for some miracle that’s never coming to fix the world for them.”
“But the board scoffs at that,” Blythe said.

“They do,” the Lady said.

Blythe rubbed his thumb over the back of Lady Blackwood’s hand. “I don’t believe it’s treacherous to note that a request for the Chairman to review the board’s competence is always in order.”

“And a good way to stop existing if the Chairman sides with the board,” Lady Blackwood noted.

“But one would simply…”

Lady Blackwood patted Blythe’s hand. “Enough scheming, Henry. You’ve already curried plenty of favor with the Chairman when you convinced us to incorporate our assets so many years ago.”

“Ahh, yes,” Blythe said. “Truly, the most vile of all human inventions is the corporation.”

“An entity capable of committing all manner of atrocities and when a culprit is searched for all the humans find is a tangled web of paperwork, dead ends, and a never ending blame game,” Lady Blackwood said. “Your success is the only reason why the Chairman allowed you to proceed with your current gamble.”

“Gamble?” Blythe asked.

“You’re rolling the dice,” Lady Blackwood said. “Henry, up until now, the greatest trick the Chairman ever pulled was to convince the world that he does not exist, that beings like us are boogeymen, the stuff of tall tales told to convince naughty children to behave lest monsters get them. We thrived in the shadows, closing deals to put the most despicable humans in positions of power and ruining other humans who would shine a light on corruption. The process is slow but eventually, it would have led to the end of days. If you fail now that you’ve put our cards on the table…”

“I’ll forfeit my medallion,” Blythe said.

“That will be the least of your worries,” Lady Blackwood said.

Lady Blackwood pecked Blythe on the cheek. “I must away. I have my own matters to attend to. Please the chairman and we’ll talk about a restructuring of the board.”

Poof. Lady Blackwood was gone. Blythe laid back on the sand, allowing the warm sun to tan his face. He closed his eyes and enjoyed it.

“It’s the most of my worries,” the vampire muttered to himself.
Blythe opened his eyes to find his two henchmen in werewolf form, staring at him. Startled, the vampire jolted to his feet.

“How many times have I told you two not to leer at me while I’m out like that?!”

Hewett and Becker morphed to their usual, naked human selves.

“Sorry sir,” Hewett said.

“Didn’t seem right to leave you alone,” Becker added.

“I’m fine,” Blythe said. “Find Freeman’s son and bring him to me.”

“Don’t you think it would be better to find Freeman and…” Hewett finished his thought by dragging a finger across his neck as if it were a knife.

“Don’t tell me what I think just do as I say,” Blythe said, shooing his lackeys away like bothersome pests. “Go!”

Hewett and Becker stepped out onto a veranda that overlooked the town. It was just after dusk. The moon bathed the town in pale light.

They returned to werewolf form, jumped across the street to the roof of the bank and were off.

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How the West Was Zombed – A Note on Chapter 34

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Hello.  I’m noted awesome person Bookshelf Q. Battler and for the 3.5 readers paying attention to How the West Was Zombed, here are a few notes:

  • First, you’ll probably say, “Oh boy, here are some new threads.”  Well, yes and no.  The mentions of “Ms. Canary and Mr. Utter,” Wild Bill Hickok, Wyatt Earp, “Associates Ringo and Brocious”  and so on…they’re basically hints at the future, should enough of you like this enough that I continue with a series.  Attorney Donnelly has advised me to keep quiet about the possibility of sequels tentatively titled “Calamity Jane vs. Zombies” and “Wyatt Earp vs. Zombies.”  They are partially written in my head and they are pretty awesome.  If only I could just hook my brain up to the computer and have it all dump out into a novel that way.  But basically, that’s why they’re mentioned, so hopefully How the West Was Zombed will be a success so that Calamity Jane and Wyatt can have their turn at the zombie mayhem.
  • I realize in an earlier chapter I had Blythe telling his werewolf henchmen to find Miles.  Disregard that part.  He now does that for the first time in this chapter.  You see, the problem I’ve faced is I didn’t want Blythe to be the typical dumb villain, toying with the heroes only to be hoisted on his own petard.  Instead, Blythe wants to kill Slade and Freeman immediately…
  • …but he has a bureaucratic board of vampires to answer to.  “I don’t really want to do this but my boss is making me…”  I feel like that’s a sentiment most people can get behind and start to understand why Blythe isn’t just whipping out a gat and blowing Slade’s head off while he’s taking a nap, which he very much wants to do.
  • This will probably be the one and only time you’ll see Lady Blackwood in this novel.  If this book leads to a steady source of cash money bling, Lady Blackwood will most likely be Calamity Jane’s nemesis in the sequel so…give me some notes as to what you think about the lady.

As always, thanks for reading.  I know.  This all still kinda stinks but I’m working on it.  I’m trying.  I’m continuing to press forward and have yet to give up, which I have a tendency to do but am pushing myself not to this time.

Let me know what you think, both good and bad.

Thanks,

BQB

 

 

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Things That Really Frost My Ass – Valentine’s Day Edition

By: Uncle Hardass, Grumpy Old Man Correspondent 

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Renowned Romance Expert Hardassimo J. Scrambler, BQB’s Grumpy Uncle

Hello degenerate 3.5 readers.  Still wasting your time trying to become writers I see. Despite your old Uncle Hardass’ repeated efforts to put you on the straight and narrow path, you’re all still convinced that you’re going to be the next Hugh Howey.

And you know what?  Maybe you all ought to shut yourselves up in a big grain silo for a decade or two just to get some inspiration for your next writing project.  God knows the world would be a better place without all you damn hippies in it.

The salt mines are still hiring, by the way.  GET A JOB!

Anyway, it’s Valentine’s Day.  The day of love.  Amor, mon cheri.  I know this comes as no surprise, but back in my day, I was quite the ladies’ man.

Why, when Gertie and I started going steady, I used to whisper sweet nothings in her ear like “Where’s my damn sandwich?” and “My dirty pants aren’t going to launder themselves.”

And Gertie was no slouch either.  Why, I remember one day we were taking a romantic walk through the drug store to pick up my hemorrhoid medication, the kind I like in the tube with the applicator tip, and she said to me, “Well, what the shit, I guess if I could do any better than you, Hardassimo, I’d of done it by now.”

Now that’s love.

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Gertrude “Aunt Gertie” Scrambler – Last seen working her way through every roadie employed by a Grateful Dead tribute band.

Nothing spells love like settling, 3.5 hippy readers.  And for those of you at home stuffing your free Dairy Queen blizzards in your suckholes and reading a blog that only attracts an audience of 3.5 readers, let me ask you this:

Have you considered settling?

Listen, I get it.  You have dreams.  You’re probably young and you’ve been led to believe crazy ideas like “I’m special” and “I deserve good things to happen to me” and “I believe in myself so all my dreams will come true.”

Look, that may all be well and good but lets face it.  Ladies, your Prince Charming is not riding up on his noble steed any time soon and men, a bus load of bikini models is not going to ever hire you to be their towel boy either.

If you’re alone this Valentine’s Day and you’re reading this pathetic excuse for a blog, then there’s a statistically high probability that you are what my nephew Bookshelf Q. Battler might call a C.H.U.D. and he doesn’t mean that in a disrespectful tone.  He’d be the first to tell you that he is one.

Hell, I tell BQB that he looks like a  “Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dweller” all the time and he never thanks me for it.  Don’t blame him for his rudeness.  He’s a blood relative on Gertie’s side of the family, so he never had the chance to inherit his Uncle Hardass’ good manners, looks, hard worth ethic, or his general ability to display kindness and sensitivity.

Look, if you millennials have come to me for advice about your love lives, you’ve come to the wrong place.  Way back when I was a youngster if a man liked a woman he’d ask her out on a date to the malt shoppe and if he had a good job and wasn’t a damn communist, her father would push her out the door like any God fearing American would have done at the time.

Ahh, but you new age young people have it all ass backwards now.  Ask a girl out on a date today and you’ll get accused of intruding on her “safe space” with a “micro aggression.”

Ladies, I’m not saying you have it any better now either.  Women used to be able to bat their eyelashes at a man they liked and that was it.  Now if you do that the guy’s liable to reach into his man purse and offer you a dab of his manscara.

That wasn’t a gay joke.  That was a straight men have become just as bad as women are at primping themselves all the time joke.  My nephew BQB has informed me that one errant gay joke is enough to leave you labeled as being worse than Charles Manson these days and I for one have always been an advocate for the gays.  As long as they work hard, pay their taxes and mow their damn lawns then I could care less what they do behind closed doors. More cooter for me, I say.

But I digress.  Let me return to the topic of settling.

If you’re reading this blog and you are alone on Valentine’s Day….SETTLE!

YOU!  Yes you.  The gal reading this dumb blog while you’re petting a calico cat with one hand and scooping  Ben and Jerry’s into your face hole with the other.

Why aren’t you settling?

You think I’m being mean here but I’m not.  Most of the time I am but not this time.  What was going through your mind when you rejected that geek that you met at your friend’s party last week?  You know.  That loser with the dopey glasses who couldn’t stop talking about the “Settlers of Catan Strategy Club” he’s in.

He called you and left a message.  Why haven’t you called that asshole back yet?

Oh I know.  “Some day things are going to turn around.  I’m going to blossom into a beautiful butterfly and Brad Pitt is going to knock down my door.”

Yeah.  Well.  Look.  One day he might.  One day my dumbass nephew might get a real job too.  Until God starts passing out miracles, call that dufus up and go on a date with him, will you?  What have you got to lose?

Holy shit.  He’s a C.H.U.D.  You’re a C.H.U.D.  Why are you damn C.H.U.D.s at home alone, stroking your ugly pets alone, watching TV alone, when you could be snuggled up nice and tight together as a hideous C.H.U.D. couple, getting a start on your bright C.H.U.D. future together and working on making some C.H.U.D. babies to scare the shit out of the nurses in the maternity ward?

I’ll tell you why.  To quote Marcellus Wallace in that Pulp Fiction movie that my stupid nephew used to watch on a continuous loop when he was growing up, “That’s pride talking.”

Yes.  You’ve convinced yourself that Brad Pitt is just around the corner.  Keep yourself single so you’ll be ready when Brad wakes up one day in his damn mansion, turns to his wife, Angelina Jolie and cries, “Holy shit, Angelina!  I’m sorry but I just realized I’m attracted to she-C.H.U.D.s with a penchant for overweight felines and novelty Vermont based ice cream products!”

Is there anything wrong with you for wanting better?  No.  That’s just human nature.  Shit, the day you stop wanting more is the day they outfit you for a pine box.

Keep wanting better but Jesus, take what you can get in the mean time.  If the bazillion to one shot that Brad leaves Angelina for you ever works out in your favor, then you can let the C.H.U.D. boyfriend you settled for go.  Maybe see if Brad can toss him a few bucks so he can get some plastic surgery to look less hideous so he can find a babe to replace you.

Holy Shit, I’ve dated myself, haven’t I?  None of you dummies know who Brad and Angelina are do you?  Who are the C.H.U.D. millennial girls hoping knocks on their door?  Justin Beiber?  Shit.  I have no idea.

Men, take a knee because your dumb asses aren’t getting off the hook easy either.  All you male C.H.U.D.s at home playing video games in your mother’s basement instead of asking that girl who works at the Arby’s that you visit three times a day to toss big beef and cheddars down your gullet.  Why don’t you ask her out?  What?  Because she has crooked teeth and a hair lip?

Shit.  I’m sure she’s still a nice gal.  Take her out to a few movies then once you get her in the sack you can plant some subliminal messages around the house.  Put a free coupon for lip waxing in the magazine she’s reading.  Tell her you have no idea how it got there.  Put an orthodontia documentary on the TV and blast it on high while she’s sleeping.  Maybe it’ll sink in.

Or just say screw it and learn to love her for her Yeti lip and snaggle teeth because let’s face it, you’re fatter than most planets and you could sell the rights to your face to Halloween mask companies.  Stop holding out for Blake Lively.  Blake Lively would not touch your diseased micro phallus if it was the only option to keep an alien race from exploding a thermonuclear bomb inside the Earth’s core.

Yeah.  Shit.  When I put it like that you want to call that Arby’s cashier up now, don’t you?

And just as the dopey gal with the cat can drop her C.H.U.D. boyfriend if Brad shows up, you too can show the Arby’s girl the door if Blake Lively falls out of love with her handsome movie star husband Ryan Reynolds and decides she’s been missing out when it comes to the micro genitalia of men that play video games in their mothers’ basements all day.

Yes, I know you young folk have been raised with perpetual pats on your back for doing nothing and participation ribbons for just showing up and you were taught to expect that every one of your wildest dreams will come true, so you may hate my guts for dousing you with this cold water but I’m really doing you a favor here.

I worry about you C.H.U.D.s.  I really, really do.  I’m not just saying that either.  Right now there’s a lonely she-C.H.U.D. and a lonely he-C.H.U.D. reading this and those C.H.U.D.s could be out having a swell time together on Valentine’s Day instead of wasting their time alone, apart, with nothing better to do than read my incompetent nephew’s bullshit blog.

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You ugly people should be together, having a good time, talking, laughing, getting to know each other and should the mood strike, exploring each others’ hideous, disgusting bodies, the types of bodies that Brad and Blake wouldn’t touch with rubber gloves covered in disinfectant.

Look, I wanted Rita Hayworth but I settled for Gertie.  And Gertie wanted Frank Sinatra but she got stuck with me.  We each wanted better but we weren’t dummies.  Like a lousy strip mall insurance lawyer, or a new house on a rickety foundation, we settled and you should too.

But Uncle Hardass, why are you telling me to settle for someone who treats me like shit and is mean to me and steals all my money and hits me and so on?

Jesus.  You 3.5 readers have reading comprehension problems.  I didn’t say settle for someone who’s a total asshole or doesn’t treat you with the dignity you deserve and shit, you don’t even have to settle for someone you don’t like or aren’t interested in.  If, for whatever reason, they just aren’t greasing your spark plugs, you don’t have to seem them again.  Don’t settle for someone if you don’t foresee any possible way of being in love with them.

All I’m saying is, at the risk of sounding hokey,  we’re all God’s children, made as he made us, aren’t we?

Ladies, go on a date with that geek.  Fellas, go on a date with that she-nerd.  Worst that happens is you don’t have a good time, it doesn’t feel right, and you don’t go out again.  Best that happens is you gave it a shot and you end up having a great time with someone you’d like to get to know better and you aren’t waiting around for something to happen.  Something is actually happening instead.

All I’m saying is you might be missing out on the love of your life for some dumb superficial reason, you dumbass.

Eh, but what do I know?  The more I watch the news, the more it seems like everyone’s an asshole these days so maybe all you single people are better off alone.  The world’s falling apart, so no need to procreate just to hand a shitty world to a new generation of losers who will cock it all up even worse than it is now, if that’s even possible.

Happy Valentine’s Day, lonely 3.5 readers.  Buck up, keep a stiff upper lip, and better luck next year.

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Happy Valentine’s Day 3.5 Readers

If you have someone, enjoy the day.

If you’re single, you can go to Dairy Queen and ask for a Free Singles Blizzard.  (Article in Fortune Magazine.)

I mean, if you’re not so prideful that you feel like going up to a teenage minimum wage slave and asking for a free ice cream treat to help dull the crippling pain of your seemingly endless loneliness isn’t beneath you and all.

I’m sure this promotion wasn’t created by a beautiful person or anything.

ATTRACTIVE AD EXEC 1 – Let’s give free ice cream to the lonely people on Valentine’s Day!

ATTRACTIVE AD EXEC 2 – Great idea! Ugly people love ice cream and they love deals that require them to admit that they’re single on the most romantic day of the year in order to stuff free food in their face holes!

If you’re in love, celebrate right.

If not, better luck next year and remember, you’re always loved as a member of BQB’s 3.5 readers club.  Why do you need a soulmate when you’ve got free ice cream and an independently published blog to read?  Seriously.  Stop being selfish.

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